ZIMRI (Heb. זִמְרִי; "my strength or protection (is the Deity)"), son of Salu, chieftain of a Simeonite ancestral house (Num. 25:14). The Israelites profaned themselves at Shittim by whoring with the Moabite women and by joining them in sacrifices to their god Baal-peor (Num. 25:1–2). Incensed, the Lord let loose a plague upon Israel (see Rashi, Num. 25:3) and ordered Moses to execute the ringleaders publicly (Num. 25:4). The earlier offense was further aggravated by Zimri, who brought a Midianite woman into his household (cf. Ibn Ezra, Num. 25:6) in full view of Moses and the assembled community who were bemoaning the plague. In an act of zeal for the Lord which became legendary (see I Macc. 2:26; IV Macc. 18:12), Phinehas son of Eleazar son of Aaron the priest killed both Zimri and the Midianite woman, Cozbi daughter of Zur, of a noble Midianite family. It was his action that turned away the wrath of God from the children of Israel. The plague ceased, but its victims numbered 24,000. -In the Aggadah In midrashic literature the biblical events are further dramatized in that Zimri openly challenged Moses' leadership and the validity of the Torah. Zimri shamed Moses into silence by reminding him of the non-Israelite origin of his own wife Zipporah (although this was not really a sin since he had married her before the acceptance of the Torah at Sinai). It was Phinehas who prevented complete disaster. He remembered a law which Moses had forgotten in his confusion – that at that time an Israelite caught in the act of openly consorting with a foreign woman was liable to immediate execution by zealots. Advised by Moses to carry out this law, Phinehas executed Zimri and Cozbi, and the threat was ended (Sanh. 82a). In Josephus' amplified version of the story, Moses feared an open confrontation with the rebels and merely exhorted the people to remain faithful to God. Encouraged by his weak reaction, Zimri denounced the law as a tyrannical limitation of man's ability to act according to his own will. The quick action of Phinehas put an end to the rebellion (Jos., Ant., 4:141–56). Phinehas became a symbol for zealous action for the Lord, while Zimri became a symbol for the worst rebellion against God and his Torah: "Fear neither the Pharisees nor those who are not Pharisees, but those hypocrites who resemble Pharisees whose deeds are like the deeds of Zimri, yet they demand the reward of Phinehas" (Sot. 22b). -BIBLIOGRAPHY: G. B. Gray, Numbers (ICC, 1912), 386–7; EM, 2 (1954), 931; Ginzberg, Legends, index; I. Ḥasida, Ishei ha-Tanakh (1964), 144. (Gershon Bacon)

Encyclopedia Judaica. 1971.

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  • ZIMRI — (d. 885/4 B.C.E.), king of Israel. When Baasha s son elah had reigned only a few months, he was slain by Zimri, commander of half of the chariots. Upon taking power, Zimri executed all the males among the relatives and admirers of Baasha (I Kings …   Encyclopedia of Judaism

  • Zimri — may refer to:*Either of two characters in the Bible: **Zimri (prince), the Prince of the Tribe of Simeon during the time of the Israelites were in the desert **Zimri (king), King of Israel after Elah and before Omri *Zimri (nation), a nation… …   Wikipedia

  • Zimri —    1) (fl. ?13th cent BCE)    Israelite, head of a clan of the tribe of Simeon. He consorted with a Midianite woman, and with her was stabbed by Phinehas, the grandson of Aaron. This act ended a plague which had been visited on the Israelites for …   Dictionary of Jewish Biography

  • Zimri — Quinto rey de Israel. En hebreo (זמרי) transliterado zmry Su historia está recogida en el primer libro de los Reyes 16:9 20 Gobernó en Israel siete días durante el año 885 a.C en Tirsa.[1] Tras haber usurpado el trono matando a su antecesor y a… …   Wikipedia Español

  • Zimri —    Praise worthy.    1) A son of Salu, slain by Phinehas, the son of Eleazar, because of his wickedness in bringing a Midianitish woman into his tent (Num. 25:6 15).    2) Murdered Elah at Tirzah, and succeeded him on the throne of Israel (1… …   Easton's Bible Dictionary

  • Zimri-Lim — war von 1773 bis 1759 v. Chr. (mittl. Chronologie), 1709 bis 1695 v. Chr. (kurze Chronologie), 1677 bis 1663 v. Chr. (ultrakurze Chronologie) letzter König von Mari, zu dessen Herrschaftsbereich in seiner Zeit auch Terqa und große Teile der… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Zimri-Lim — Zimrî Lîm Tablette de Zimri Lim relatant la fondation d une glacière à Terqa, musée du Louvre Zimri Lim ou Zimrî Lîm, roi de Mari de 1775 à 1761 av. J. C. Origines Bien qu il se déclare fils de l ancien roi de Mari Yahdun Lîm, Zimrî Lî …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Zimri-lim — Zimrî Lîm Tablette de Zimri Lim relatant la fondation d une glacière à Terqa, musée du Louvre Zimri Lim ou Zimrî Lîm, roi de Mari de 1775 à 1761 av. J. C. Origines Bien qu il se déclare fils de l ancien roi de Mari Yahdun Lîm, Zimrî Lî …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Zimri (king) — Zimri (Hebrew Name 1|זמרי|Zmri|praiseworthy) was a king of Israel for seven days. William F. Albright has dated his reign to 876 BC, while E. R. Thiele offers the date 885 BC. His story is told in 1 Kings , Chapter 16.He was a commander who… …   Wikipedia

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