Seth (Heb. Sheth, שֵׁת, i.e. compensation; Sept. and New Test. Σήθ; Josephus, Σῆθος [Ant. 1, 2, 3]; A.V. "Sheth" in 1Ch 1:1; Nu 24:7), the third son of Adam (born B.C. 4042), and the father of Enos (when 105 years old); he died at the age of 912 (Ge 4:25-26; Ge 5; Ge 3-8; 1Ch 1:1; Lu 3:38). The signification of his name (given in Ge 4:25) is "appointed" or "put" in the place of the murdered Abel, and Delitzsch speaks of him as the second Abel; but Ewald (Gesch. 1, 353) thinks that another signification, which he prefers, is indicated in the text, viz. "seedling," or "germ." The phrase "children of Sheth" (Nu 24:17) has been understood as equivalent to all mankind, or as denoting the tribe of some unknown Moabitish chieftain; but later critics, among whom are Rosenmüller and Gesenius (Thesaur. p. 346), bearing in mind the parallel passage (Jer 48:45), render the phrase "children of noise, tumultuous ones," i.e. hostile armies. SEE SHETH.
In the 4th century there existed in Egypt a sect calling themselves Sethians, who are classed by Neander (Ch. Hist., 2, 115, ed. Bohn) among those Gnostic sects which, in opposing Judaism, approximated to paganism. (See. also Tillemont, Memoires, 2, 318.) Irenaeus (1, 30; comp. Massuet, Dissert. 1, 3, 14) and Theodoret (Hoeret. Fab. 14, 306), without distinguishing between them. and the Ophites, or worshippers of the serpent, say that in their system Seth was regarded as a divine effluence or virtue. Epiphanius, who devotes a chapter to them (Adv. Hoer. 1, 3, 39), says that they identified Seth with our Lord. See Quandt, De Christo in Nomine Sethi Adumbrato (Regiom. 1726).