AHITHOPHEL, ɑ̄-hith´o-fel: A counselor of David. He is called
“the Gilonite,” i.e., from Giloh, a city in the south of Judah (II
Sam. xv. 12). David esteemed him highly for his great wisdom (II
Sam. xvi. 23). When Absalom revolted, Ahithophel faithlessly betrayed
David in the expectation that the rebellion would be successful (II
Sam. xv. 12, 31, xvi. 21, xvii. 1
sqq.). He soon perceived, however, that his authority was not paramount with
the young prince; and when the latter rejected his advice to attack David at
once, he went home and hanged himself (II Sam. xvii. 23).
Some think that Ps. xli. 9, lv. 12 sqq. have reference to
David’s sad experience with Ahithophel. Eliam, a son of Ahithophel, was one
of David’s heroes (II Sam. xxxiii. 34); it is hardly possible
that he was the Eliam mentioned as the father of Bath-sheba (II Sam.