He was a priest of the Jerusalem temple, probably a member of the dominant house of Zadok, and doubtless had the literary training of the cultivated priesthood of the time, including acquaintance with the national historical, legal and ritual traditions and with the contemporary history and customs of neighbouring peoples.
2 The stem of David is superseded by the house of Zadok, the kingship has yielded to the priesthood, and the extinction of national hopes gives new importance to that strict organization of the hierarchy for which Ezekiel had prepared the way by his sentence of disfranchisement against the nonZadokite priests.
The Levites who had been idolatrous are punished by exclusion from the proper priestly work, and take the subordinate offices which the uncircumcised and polluted foreigners had formerly filled, while the sons of Zadok, who had remained faithful, are henceforth the legitimate priests, the only descendants of Levi who are allowed to minister unto Yahweh (Ezek.
The sequel to this phase is placed in the reign of Solomon, when David's old priest Abiathar, sole survivor of the priests of Shiloh, is expelled to Anathoth (near Jerusalem), and Zadok becomes the first chief priest contemporary with the foundation of the first temple (1 Kings ii.
Thus Zadok, who obtained the priestly office at Jerusalem in the reign of Solomon and was succeeded by his sons, was regarded in later days as the founder of the true and legitimate succession of the priesthood descended from Levi (Ezek.
The officiating priests are now the descendants of the line of Zadok belonging to the tribe of Levi.
It is the sons of Zadok only that have any right to offer sacrifice at the altar of burnt offering (xliii.
His small kingdom of Judah enjoyed an unbroken dynasty which survived the most serious crises, a temple which grew in splendour and wealth under royal patronage, and a legitimate priesthood which owed its origin to Zadok, the successful rival of David's priest Abiathar.
Bathsheba, relying upon David's promise that Solomon should succeed him, vigorously advanced her son's claims with the support of Zadok the priest, the military officer Benaiah, and David's bodyguard; Adonijah, for his part, had David's old priest Abiathar, the commander Joab, and the men of Judah.
Moreover, with the emphasis which is laid upon the Jerusalem Temple is to be associated the new superiority of Zadok, the traditional ancestor of the Zadokites, the Jerusalem priests, whose supremacy over the other Levitical families only enters into the history of a much later age (see Levites).
That at least the greater offices were hereditary - as in the case of the sons of Zadok, who succeeded to the royal priesthood in Jerusalem after the fall of Abiathar - was almost a matter of course as society was then constituted, but there is not the slightest trace of an hereditary hierarchy officiating by divine right, such as existed after the exile.
The sons of Zadok, the priests-of the royal chapel, were the king's servants as absolutely as any other great officers of state; they owed their place to the fiat of King Solomon, and the royal will was supreme in all matters of cultus (2 Kings xii., xvi.
And as the sons of Zadok had no divine right as against the kings, so too they had no claim to be more legitimate than the priests of the local sanctuaries, who also were reckoned to the tribe which in the 7th century B.C. was recognized as having been divinely set apart as Jehovah's ministers in the days of Moses (Deut.
36, a passage written after the hereditary dignity of the sons of Zadok at Jerusalem was well established.
Of Zadok to the proposal to share the sanctuary on equal terms with these new-comers, and the theoretical justification of the degradation of the latter L to the position of mere servants in the Temple supplied by Ezekiel soon after the captivity, need not here be dealt with.
4 Zadok and Abiathar are found acting together as priests under Solomon.
Arguments for a preMaccabean date may be derived (a) from the fact that the book contains apparently no reference to the Maccabean struggles, (b) from the eulogy of the priestly house of Zadok which fell into disrepute during these wars for independence.
25 seq.), and the deity Sedek is curiously associated with the names of the Jerusalem priests Zadok, Jehozadak (cf.
The Talmud reports ancient controversies on points of law; and gives the Sadducees a founder, Zadok the disciple of Antigonus the man of Soco who prohibited the hope of reward for service done to God.
(1) One of Solomon's "princes," son of Zadok the priest (I Kings iv.