(Jo·haʹnan) [shortened form of Jehohanan, meaning “Jehovah Has Shown Favor; Jehovah Has Been Gracious”].
The English name John stems from this Hebrew name.
1. An ambidextrous, mighty Benjamite, one of the skilled warriors who joined David at Ziklag.—1Ch 12:1-4.
4. Firstborn son of King Josiah. (1Ch 3:15) Since he is nowhere mentioned in connection with succession to the throne of Judah, as are his three younger brothers, he must have died before his father’s death.—2Ki 23:30, 34; 24:17; Jer 22:11; see JOSIAH No. 1.
5. One of the chiefs of the military forces remaining in Judah after the general deportation to Babylon in the summer of 607 B.C.E. This son of Kareah readily supported the appointment of Gedaliah and, on learning of Ishmael’s plot to assassinate the governor, asked Gedaliah for permission to kill Ishmael secretly but was denied it. (Jer 40:7, 8, 13-16) Gedaliah was assassinated, Johanan led the forces to avenge him, and persons whom Ishmael had taken captive were recovered; but the assassin himself escaped to Ammon. (Jer 41:11-16) Fearing reprisals from the Babylonians, Johanan and the others asked the prophet Jeremiah what they should do, but, rather than follow Jehovah’s advice to remain in the land, they fled to Egypt, taking Jeremiah with them.—Jer 42:1–43:7; 2Ki 25:23-26.
7. Grandson of Eliashib, the high priest contemporary with Nehemiah. His being called Jonathan in Nehemiah 12:11 is probably due to a scribal error, as the names “Johanan” and “Jonathan” are very similar in Hebrew. Johanan is mentioned in Nehemiah 12:22, 23 and in a letter found among the Elephantine Papyri, where he is addressed as high priest.—Jewish Antiquities, by F. Josephus, XI, 297 (vii, 1).