ebed-melech Summary and Overview
Bible Dictionaries at a Glance
ebed-melech in Easton's Bible Dictionary
a servant of the king; probably an official title, an Ethiopian,
"one of the eunuchs which was in the king's house;" i.e., in the
palace of Zedekiah, king of Judah. He interceded with the king
in Jeremiah's behalf, and was the means of saving him from death
by famine (Jer. 38:7-13: compare 39:15-18).
ebed-melech in Smith's Bible Dictionary
(a king's servant), an Ethiopian eunuch in the service of King Zedekiah, through whose interference Jeremiah was released from prison. #Jer 38:7| ff.; Jere 39:15 ff. (B.C. 1589).
ebed-melech in Schaff's Bible Dictionary
E'BED-ME'LECH (slave of the king), an Ethiopian eunuch of Zedekiah, king of Judah, who was instrumental in saving the prophet Jeremiah from death by famine, and who for his kindness in his behalf was promised deliverance when the city should fall into the enemy's hands, Jer 38:7; Jer 39:15-18. His name seems to have been an official title.
ebed-melech in Fausset's Bible Dictionary
("king's stare".) (An oriental phrase), an Ethiopian eunuch of king Zedekiah, instrumental in Jeremiah's deliverance out of Malchiah's dungeon pit. Ebed-melech, an Ethiopian Gentile slave, did that which none of Jeremiah's own countrymen attempted in his behalf. Often God raises friends to His people from quarters from whence least they could expect it. Ebedmelech's courageous interference in Jeremiah's behalf, at a time when he might naturally fear the wrath of the princes to which even the king had to yield (Jeremiah 38:4-13; Jeremiah 39:16-18), brought deliverance not only to the prophet, but ultimately to himself as his reward from God.
None ever loses by being bold for God (Matthew 10:42). He might have spoken privately to the king, as being over the king's harem (Nubians being chosen for that office to the present day), but Ebed-melech "went forth out of the king's house to the gate of Benjamin," and there spoke publicly to the king, "these men have done evil in all that they have done to Jeremiah whom they have cast into the dungeon, and he is like to die for hunger in the place where he is, for there is no more bread in the city."
With 30 men to guard against the princes' opposition, and by means of torn clothes and worn garments ("cast clouts and rotten rags," for God chooses weak things to confound the mighty, 1 Corinthians 1:27-29), he raised Jeremiah up from the pit. So when his enemies should perish God promised Ebedmelech should be saved, "because thou hast put thy trust in Me" (compare 1 Chronicles 5:20; Psalm 37:40). Trust in God generates fearlessness of man and brings true safety for eternity, and often even here (Jeremiah 39). So shall they be rewarded who have visited Christ, in the person of His servants, in prison (Matthew 25:34 ff).