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Answering The Atheist
February 22, 2004 / Volume 4, Issue 8

Was Abiathar the father (2 Sam 8:17; 1 Chr 18:16; 24:6) or son (1 Sam 22:20; 23:6) of Ahimelech? Is there a contradiction?

I don't suppose the questioner considered that there could be two men with the name Ahimelech, one the father of Abiathar, the other the son of Abiathar? Ahimelech, the father of Abiathar, was murdered by Doeg, according to the command of Saul (1 Sam 22:9-23). His son, Abiathar seems to be the only one to have escaped the massacre.

This Ahimelech, being dead, cannot be the same Ahimelech who is spoken of in 2 Samuel 8, 1 Chronicles 18, and other places. It would appear that Abiathar had a son, whom he named Ahimelech, perhaps as a tribute to his father, who died at the hands of ungodly men.

There is no contradiction.

This article is a response to Skeptic's Annotated Bible