Bible Wiki

Abishai was the oldest son of Zeruiah, David's sister. He was the brother of Joab and Asahel[1]). Abishai was the only one who accompanied David when he went to the camp of Saul and took the spear and the cruse of water from Saul's bolster.[2]

He had the command of one of the three divisions of David's army at the battle with Absalom.[3] He slew the Philistine giant Ishbi-benob, who threatened David's life.[4] He was the chief of the second rank of the three "mighties"[5] and on one occasion withstood 300 men, and slew them with his own spear.[6]


Abishai means "father of (i.e., "desirous of") a gift".


  1. 2 Samuel 2:18; 1 Chronicles 2:16 (Link)
  2. 1 Samuel 26:5-12 (Link)
  3. 2 Samuel 18:2, 5, 12 (Link)
  4. 2 Samuel 21:15-17 (Link)
  5. 2 Samuel 23:18-19; 1 Chronicles 11:20-21 (Link)
  6. 2 Samuel 23:18 (Link)