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Shobach was commander of the army of Hadadezer king of Zobah.


Shobach was named because he had the figure of a dove-cot ("shobak"); the other, that his real name was Shobach, and that he was called Shophach (= "the melter") because he looked so fierce and terrible that those who saw him "melted" away from mere fright.

Battle of Helam[]

After Zobah and some other Syrian states had been defeated by Israel in battle after trying to assist the Ammmonites, the Syrians regrouped in Zobah.[1] Hadadezer king of Zobah assembled a vast army in coalition with several Syrian kingdoms, including even some from beyond the Euphrates River. Hadadezer placed Shobach in command of this large army.[2] The army came to Helam, where they would face Israel.

King David led the Israelite army to Helam. Despite the numerical advantage of Shobach's force, the Syrians were decisively defeated by David. Shobach himself was wounded in the battle, and soon after died from his injuries.[3] Zobah's defeat meant that it and the other Syrian kingdoms involved in the battle became subject to Israel.[4]


  1. 2 Sam. 10:15 (Link)
  2. 2 Sam. 10:16 (Link)
  3. 2 Sam. 10:18 (Link)
  4. 2 Sam. 10:19 (Link)