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masc. proper name, biblical father of David, from Latin, from Greek Iessai, from Hebrew Yishay, of unknown origin.
firm, or a gift, a son of Obed, the son of Boaz and Ruth (Ruth 4:17, 22; Matt. 1:5, 6; Luke 3:32). He was the father of eight sons, the youngest of whom was David (1 Sam. 17:12). The phrase "stem of Jesse" is used for the family of David (Isa. 11:1), and "root of Jesse" for the Messiah (Isa. 11:10; Rev. 5:5). Jesse was a man apparently of wealth and position at Bethlehem (1 Sam. 17:17, 18, 20; Ps. 78:71). The last reference to him is of David's procuring for him an asylum with the king of Moab (1 Sam. 22:3).
in the Old Testament, the father of King David. Jesse was the son of Ohed, and the grandson of Boaz and Ruth. He was a farmer and sheep breeder in Bethlehem. David was the youngest of Jesse's eight sons. The appellation "son of Jesse" served as a synonym for David both at Saul's court and, subsequently, when David became king. It became a standard poetic metaphor in the Bible. Phrases such as "root of Jesse" and "stump of Jesse" (Isaiah 11:1,10) expand the metaphor. All evoke the figure of David. That the family of David would endure forever was an article of faith in monarchic circles (2 Samuel 7), supported by the fact that his dynasty had occupied the throne on Mount Zion in unbroken succession for over four centuries.