Easton’s Bible Dictionary (complete text) by M.G. Easton – D through E
Daberath Pasture, a Levitical town of Issachar (Josh. 19:12; 21:28), near the border of Zebulum. It is the modern small village of Deburich, at the base of Mount Tabor. Tradition has incorrectly made it the scene of the miracle of the cure of the lunatic child (Matt. 17:14).
Daemon The Greek form, rendered “devil” in the Authorized Version of the New Testament. Daemons are spoken of as spiritual beings (Matt. 8:16; 10:1; 12:43-45) at enmity with God, and as having a certain power over man (James 2:19; Rev. 16:14). They recognize our Lord as the Son of God (Matt. 8:20; Luke 4:41). They belong to the number of those angels that “kept not their first estate,” “unclean spirits,” “fallen angels,” the angels of the devil (Matt. 25:41; Rev. 12:7-9). They are the “principalities and powers” against which we must “wrestle” (Eph. 6:12).
Daemoniac One “possessed with a devil.” In the days of our Lord and his apostles, evil spirits, “daemons,” were mysteriously permitted by God to exercise an influence both over the souls and bodies of men, inflicting dumbness (Matt. 9:32), blindness (12:22), epilepsy (Mark 9:17-27), insanity (Matt. 8:28; Mark 5:1-5). Daemoniacs are frequently distinguished from those who are afflicted with ordinary bodily maladies (Mark 1:32; 16:17, 18; Luke 6:17, 18). The daemons speak in their own persons (Matt. 8:29; Mark 1:23, 24; 5:7). This influence is clearly distinguished from the ordinary power of corruption and of temptation over men. In the daemoniac his personality seems to be destroyed, and his actions, words, and even thoughts to be overborne by the evil spirit (Mark, l.c.; Acts 19:15).
Dagon Little fish; diminutive from dag = a fish, the fish-god; the national god of the Philistines (Judg. 16:23). This idol had the body of a fish with the head and hands of a man. It was an Assyrio-Babylonian deity, the worship of which was introduced among the Philistines through Chaldea. The most famous of the temples of Dagon were at Gaza (Judg. 16:23-30) and Ashdod (1 Sam. 5:1-7). (See FISH.)
Dagon’s house (1 Sam. 5:2), or Beth-dagon, as elsewhere rendered (Josh. 15: 41; 19:27), was the sanctuary or temple of Dagon.
The Beth-dagon of Josh. 15:41 was one of the cities of the tribe of Judah, in the lowland or plain which stretches westward. It has not been identified.
The Beth-dagon of Josh. 19:27 was one of the border cities of Asher.
That of 1 Chr. 10:10 was in the western half-tribe of Manasseh, where the Philistines, after their victory at Gilboa, placed Saul’s head in the temple of their god. (Comp. 1 Sam. 31:8-13).
Daily sacrifice (Dan. 8:12; 11:31; 12:11), a burnt offering of two lambs of a year old, which were daily sacrificed in the name of the whole Israelitish people upon the great altar, the first at dawn of day, and the second at evening (Dan. 9:21), or more correctly, “between the two evenings.” (See SACRIFICE.)
Dale, the king’s The name of a valley, the alternative for “the valley of Shaveh” (q.v.), near the Dead Sea, where the king of Sodom met Abraham (Gen. 14:17). Some have identified it with the southern part of the valley of Jehoshaphat, where Absalom reared his family monument (2 Sam. 18:18).
Dalmanutha A place on the west of the Sea of Galilee, mentioned only in Mark 8:10. In the parallel passage it is said that Christ came “into the borders of Magdala” (Matt. 15:39). It is plain, then, that Dalmanutha was near Magdala, which was probably the Greek name of one of the many Migdols (i.e., watch-towers) on the western side of the lake of Gennesaret. It has been identified in the ruins of a village about a mile from Magdala, in the little open valley of Ain-el-Barideh, “the cold fountain,” called el-Mejdel, possibly the “Migdal-el” of Josh. 19:38.
Dalmatia A mountainous country on the eastern shore of the Adriatic, a part of the Roman province of Illyricum. It still bears its ancient name. During Paul’s second imprisonment at Rome, Titus left him to visit Dalmatia (2 Tim. 4:10) for some unknown purpose. Paul had himself formerly preached in that region (Rom. 15:19).
The present Emperor of Austria bears, among his other titles, that of “King of Dalmatia.”
Damaris A heifer, an Athenian woman converted to Christianity under the preaching of Paul (Acts 17:34). Some have supposed that she may have been the wife of Dionysius the Areopagite.
Damascus Activity, the most ancient of Oriental cities; the capital of Syria (Isa. 7:8; 17:3); situated about 133 miles to the north of Jerusalem. Its modern name is Esh-Sham; i.e., “the East.”
The situation of this city is said to be the most beautiful of all Western Asia. It is mentioned among the conquests of the Egyptian king Thothmes III. (B.C. 1500), and in the Amarna tablets (B.C. 1400).
It is first mentioned in Scripture in connection with Abraham’s victory over the confederate kings under Chedorlaomer (Gen. 14:15). It was the native place of Abraham’s steward (15:2). It is not again noticed till the time of David, when “the Syrians of Damascus came to succour Hadadezer” (q.v.), 2 Sam. 8:5; 1 Chr. 18:5. In the reign of Solomon, Rezon became leader of a band who revolted from Hadadezer (1 Kings 11:23), and betaking themselves to Damascus, settled there and made their leader king. There was a long war, with varying success, between the Israelites and Syrians, who at a later period became allies of Israel against Judah (2 Kings 15:37).
The Syrians were at length subdued by the Assyrians, the city of Damascus was taken and destroyed, and the inhabitants carried captive into Assyria (2 Kings 16:7-9; comp. Isa. 7:8). In this, prophecy was fulfilled (Isa. 17:1; Amos 1:4; Jer. 49:24). The kingdom of Syria remained a province of Assyria till the capture of Nineveh by the Medes (B.C. 625), when it fell under the conquerors. After passing through various vicissitudes, Syria was invaded by the Romans (B.C. 64), and Damascus became the seat of the government of the province. In A.D. 37 Aretas, the king of Arabia, became master of Damascus, having driven back Herod Antipas.
This city is memorable as the scene of Saul’s conversion (Acts 9:1-25). The street called “Straight,” in which Judas lived, in whose house Saul was found by Ananias, is known by the name Sultany, or “Queen’s Street.” It is the principal street of the city. Paul visited Damascus again on his return from Arabia (Gal. 1:16, 17). Christianity was planted here as a centre (Acts 9:20), from which it spread to the surrounding regions.
In A.D. 634 Damascus was conquered by the growing Mohammedan power. In A.D. 1516 it fell under the dominion of the Turks, its present rulers. It is now the largest city in Asiatic Turkey. Christianity has again found a firm footing within its walls.
Damnation In Rom. 13:2, means “condemnation,” which comes on those who withstand God’s ordinance of magistracy. This sentence of condemnation comes not from the magistrate, but from God, whose authority is thus resisted.
In 1 Cor. 11:29 (R.V., “judgment”) this word means condemnation, in the sense of exposure to severe temporal judgements from God, as the following verse explains.
In Rom. 14:23 the word “damned” means “condemned” by one’s own conscience, as well as by the Word of God. The apostle shows here that many things which are lawful are not expedient; and that in using our Christian liberty the question should not simply be, Is this course I follow lawful? but also, Can I follow it without doing injury to the spiritual interests of a brother in Christ? He that “doubteth”, i.e., is not clear in his conscience as to “meats”, will violate his conscience “if he eat,” and in eating is condemned; and thus one ought not so to use his liberty as to lead one who is “weak” to bring upon himself this condemnation.
Dan A judge. (1.) The fifth son of Jacob. His mother was Bilhah, Rachel’s maid (Gen. 30:6, “God hath judged me”, Heb. dananni). The blessing pronounced on him by his father was, “Dan shall judge his people” (49:16), probably in allusion to the judgeship of Samson, who was of the tribe of Dan.
The tribe of Dan had their place in the march through the wilderness on the north side of the tabernacle (Num. 2:25, 31; 10:25). It was the last of the tribes to receive a portion in the Land of Promise. Its position and extent are described in Josh. 19:40-48.
The territory of Dan extended from the west of that of Ephraim and Benjamin to the sea. It was a small territory, but was very fertile. It included in it, among others, the cities of Lydda, Ekron, and Joppa, which formed its northern boundary. But this district was too limited. “Squeezed into the narrow strip between the mountains and the sea, its energies were great beyond its numbers.” Being pressed by the Amorites and the Philistines, whom they were unable to conquer, they longed for a wider space. They accordingly sent out five spies from two of their towns, who went north to the sources of the Jordan, and brought back a favourable report regarding that region. “Arise,” they said, “be not slothful to go, and to possess the land,” for it is “a place where there is no want of any thing that is in the earth” (Judg. 18:10). On receiving this report, 600 Danites girded on their weapons of war, and taking with them their wives and their children, marched to the foot of Hermon, and fought against Leshem, and took it from the Sidonians, and dwelt therein, and changed the name of the conquered town to Dan (Josh. 19:47). This new city of Dan became to them a new home, and was wont to be spoken of as the northern limit of Palestine, the length of which came to be denoted by the expression “from Dan to Beersheba”, i.e., about 144 miles.
“But like Lot under a similar temptation, they seem to have succumbed to the evil influences around them, and to have sunk down into a condition of semi-heathenism from which they never emerged. The mounds of ruins which mark the site of the city show that it covered a considerable extent of ground. But there remains no record of any noble deed wrought by the degenerate tribe. Their name disappears from the roll-book of the natural and the spiritual Israel.”, Manning’s Those Holy Fields.
This old border city was originally called Laish. Its modern name is Tell el-Kady, “Hill of the Judge.” It stands about four miles below Caesarea Philippi, in the midst of a region of surpassing richness and beauty.
(2.) This name occurs in Ezek 27:19, Authorize Version; but the words there, “Dan also,” should be simply, as in the Revised Version, “Vedan,” an Arabian city, from which various kinds of merchandise were brought to Tyre. Some suppose it to have been the city of Aden in Arabia. (See MAHANEH-DAN.)
Dance Found in Judg. 21:21, 23; Ps. 30:11; 149:3; 150:4; Jer. 31:4, 13, etc., as the translation of hul, which points to the whirling motion of Oriental sacred dances. It is the rendering of a word (rakad’) which means to skip or leap for joy, in Eccl. 3:4; Job 21:11; Isa. 13:21, etc.
In the New Testament it is in like manner the translation of different Greek words, circular motion (Luke 15:25); leaping up and down in concert (Matt. 11:17), and by a single person (Matt. 14:6).
It is spoken of as symbolical of rejoicing (Eccl. 3:4. Comp. Ps. 30:11; Matt. 11: 17). The Hebrews had their sacred dances expressive of joy and thanksgiving, when the performers were usually females (Ex. 15:20; 1 Sam. 18:6).
The ancient dance was very different from that common among Western nations. It was usually the part of the women only (Ex. 15:20; Judg. 11:34; comp. 5:1). Hence the peculiarity of David’s conduct in dancing before the ark of the Lord (2 Sam. 6:14). The women took part in it with their timbrels. Michal should, in accordance with the example of Miriam and others, have herself led the female choir, instead of keeping aloof on the occasion and “looking through the window.” David led the choir “uncovered”, i.e., wearing only the ephod or linen tunic. He thought only of the honour of God, and forgot himself.
From being reserved for occasions of religious worship and festivity, it came gradually to be practised in common life on occasions of rejoicing (Jer. 31:4). The sexes among the Jews always danced separately. The daughter of Herodias danced alone (Matt. 14:6).
Daniel God is my judge, or judge of God. (1.) David’s second son, “born unto him in Hebron, of Abigail the Carmelitess” (1 Chr. 3:1). He is called also Chileab (2 Sam. 3:3).
(2.) One of the four great prophets, although he is not once spoken of in the Old Testament as a prophet. His life and prophecies are recorded in the Book of Daniel. He was descended from one of the noble families of Judah (Dan. 1:3), and was probably born in Jerusalem about B.C. 623, during the reign of Josiah. At the first deportation of the Jews by Nebuchadnezzar (the kingdom of Israel had come to an end nearly a century before), or immediately after his victory over the Egyptians at the second battle of Carchemish, in the fourth year of the reign of Jehoiakim (B.C. 606), Daniel and other three noble youths were carried off to Babylon, along with part of the vessels of the temple. There he was obliged to enter into the service of the king of Babylon, and in accordance with the custom of the age received the Chaldean name of Belteshazzar, i.e., “prince of Bel,” or “Bel protect the king!” His residence in Babylon was very probably in the palace of Nebuchadnezzar, now identified with a mass of shapeless mounds called the Kasr, on the right bank of the river.
His training in the schools of the wise men in Babylon (Dan. 1:4) was to fit him for service to the empire. He was distinguished during this period for his piety and his stict observance of the Mosaic law (1:8-16), and gained the confidence and esteem of those who were over him. His habit of attention gained during his education in Jerusalem enabled him soon to master the wisdom and learning of the Chaldeans, and even to excel his compeers.
At the close of his three years of discipline and training in the royal schools, Daniel was distinguished for his proficiency in the “wisdom” of his day, and was brought out into public life. He soon became known for his skill in the interpretation of dreams (1:17; 2:14), and rose to the rank of governor of the province of Babylon, and became “chief of the governors” (Chald. Rab-signin) over all the wise men of Babylon. He made known and also interpreted Nebuchadnezzar’s dream; and many years afterwards, when he was now an old man, amid the alarm and consternation of the terrible night of Belshazzar’s impious feast, he was called in at the instance of the queen-mother (perhaps Nitocris, the daughter of Nebuchadnezzar) to interpret the mysterious handwriting on the wall. He was rewarded with a purple robe and elevation to the rank of “third ruler.” The place of “second ruler” was held by Belshazzar as associated with his father, Nabonidus, on the throne (5:16). Daniel interpreted the handwriting, and “in that night was Belshazzar the king of the Chaldeans slain.”
After the taking of Babylon, Cyrus, who was now master of all Asia from India to the Dardanelles, placed Darius (q.v.), a Median prince, on the throne, during the two years of whose reign Daniel held the office of first of the “three presidents” of the empire, and was thus practically at the head of affairs, no doubt interesting himself in the prospects of the captive Jews (Dan. 9), whom he had at last the happiness of seeing restored to their own land, although he did not return with them, but remained still in Babylon. His fidelity to God exposed him to persecution, and he was cast into a den of lions, but was miraculously delivered; after which Darius issued a decree enjoining reverence for “the God of Daniel” (6:26). He “prospered in the reign of Darius, and in the reign of Cyrus the Persian,” whom he probably greatly influenced in the matter of the decree which put an end to the Captivity (B.C. 536).
He had a series of prophetic visions vouch-safed to him which opened up the prospect of a glorious future for the people of God, and must have imparted peace and gladness to his spirit in his old age as he waited on at his post till the “end of the days.” The time and circumstances of his death are not recorded. He probably died at Susa, about eighty-five years of age.
Ezekiel, with whom he was contemporary, mentions him as a pattern of righteousness (14:14, 20) and wisdom (28:3). (See NEBUCHADNEZZAR.)
Daniel, Book of Is ranked by the Jews in that division of their Bible called the Hagiographa (Heb. Khethubim). (See BIBLE.) It consists of two distinct parts. The first part, consisting of the first six chapters, is chiefly historical; and the second part, consisting of the remaining six chapters, is chiefly prophetical.
The historical part of the book treats of the period of the Captivity. Daniel is “the historian of the Captivity, the writer who alone furnishes any series of events for that dark and dismal period during which the harp of Israel hung on the trees that grew by the Euphrates. His narrative may be said in general to intervene between Kings and Chronicles on the one hand and Ezra on the other, or (more strictly) to fill out the sketch which the author of the Chronicles gives in a single verse in his last chapter: And them that had escaped from the sword carried he [i.e., Nebuchadnezzar] away to Babylon; where they were servants to him and his sons until the reign of the kingdom of Persia'” (2 Chr. 36:20).
The prophetical part consists of three visions and one lengthened prophetical communication.
The genuineness of this book has been much disputed, but the arguments in its favour fully establish its claims. (1.) We have the testimony of Christ (Matt. 24:15; 25:31; 26:64) and his apostles (1 Cor. 6:2; 2 Thess. 2:3) for its authority; and (2) the important testimony of Ezekiel (14:14, 20; 28:3). (3.) The character and records of the book are also entirely in harmony with the times and circumstances in which the author lived. (4.) The linguistic character of the book is, moreover, just such as might be expected. Certain portions (Dan. 2:4; 7) are written in the Chaldee language; and the portions written in Hebrew are in a style and form having a close affinity with the later books of the Old Testament, especially with that of Ezra. The writer is familiar both with the Hebrew and the Chaldee, passing from the one to the other just as his subject required. This is in strict accordance with the position of the author and of the people for whom his book was written. That Daniel is the writer of this book is also testified to in the book itself (7:1, 28; 8:2; 9:2; 10:1, 2; 12:4, 5). (See BELSHAZZAR.)
Dan-jaan Woodland Dan, a place probably somewhere in the direction of Dan, near the sources of the Jordan (2 Sam. 24:6). The LXX. and the Vulgate read “Dan-ja’ar”, i.e., “Dan in the forest.”
Dannah Murmuring, a city (Josh. 15:49) in the mountains of Judah about 8 miles south-west of Hebron.
Darda Pearl of wisdom, one of the four who were noted for their wisdom, but whom Solomon excelled (1 Kings 4:31).
Daric In the Revised Version of 1 Chr. 29:7; Ezra 2:69; 8:27; Neh. 7:70-72, where the Authorized Version has “dram.” It is the rendering of the Hebrew darkemon and the Greek dareikos. It was a gold coin, bearing the figure of a Persian King with his crown and armed with bow and arrow. It was current among the Jews after their return from Babylon, i.e., while under the Persian domination. It weighed about 128 grains troy, and was of the value of about one guinea or rather more of our money. It is the first coin mentioned in Scripture, and is the oldest that history makes known to us.
Darius The holder or supporter, the name of several Persian kings. (1.) Darius the Mede (Dan. 11:1), “the son of Ahasuerus, of the seed of the Medes” (9:1). On the death of Belshazzar the Chaldean he “received the kingdom” of Babylon as viceroy from Cyrus. During his brief reign (B.C. 538-536) Daniel was promoted to the highest dignity (Dan. 6:1, 2); but on account of the malice of his enemies he was cast into the den of lions. After his miraculous escape, a decree was issued by Darius enjoining “reverence for the God of Daniel” (6:26). This king was probably the “Astyages” of the Greek historians. Nothing can, however, be with certainty affirmed regarding him. Some are of opinion that the name “Darius” is simply a name of office, equivalent to “governor,” and that the “Gobryas” of the inscriptions was the person intended by the name.
(2.) Darius, king of Persia, was the son of Hystaspes, of the royal family of the Achaemenidae. He did not immediately succeed Cyrus on the throne. There were two intermediate kings, viz., Cambyses (the Ahasuerus of Ezra), the son of Cyrus, who reigned from B.C. 529-522, and was succeeded by a usurper named Smerdis, who occupied the throne only ten months, and was succeeded by this Darius (B.C. 521-486). Smerdis was a Margian, and therefore had no sympathy with Cyrus and Cambyses in the manner in which they had treated the Jews. He issued a decree prohibiting the restoration of the temple and of Jerusalem (Ezra 4:17-22). But soon after his death and the accession of Darius, the Jews resumed their work, thinking that the edict of Smerdis would be now null and void, as Darius was in known harmony with the religious policy of Cyrus. The enemies of the Jews lost no time in bringing the matter under the notice of Darius, who caused search to be made for the decree of Cyrus (q.v.). It was not found at Babylon, but at Achmetha (Ezra 6:2); and Darius forthwith issued a new decree, giving the Jews full liberty to prosecute their work, at the same time requiring the Syrian satrap and his subordinates to give them all needed help. It was with the army of this king that the Greeks fought the famous battle of Marathon (B.C. 490). During his reign the Jews enjoyed much peace and prosperity. He was succeeded by Ahasuerus, known to the Greeks as Xerxes, who reigned for twenty-one years.
(3.) Darius the Persian (Neh. 12:22) was probably the Darius II. (Ochus or Nothus) of profane history, the son of Artaxerxes Longimanus, who was the son and successor of Ahasuerus (Xerxes). There are some, however, who think that the king here meant was Darius III. (Codomannus), the antagonist of Alexander the Great (B.C. 336-331).
Darkness The plague (the ninth) of darkness in Egypt (Ex. 10:21) is described as darkness “which may be felt.” It covered “all the land of Egypt,” so that “they saw not one another.” It did not extend to the land of Goshen (ver. 23).
When Jesus hung upon the cross (Matt. 27:45; Luke 23:44), from the “sixth hour there was darkness over all the land unto the ninth hour.”
On Mount Sinai, Moses (Ex. 20:21) “drew near unto the thick darkness where God was.” This was the “thick cloud upon the mount” in which Jehovah was when he spake unto Moses there. The Lord dwelt in the cloud upon the mercy-seat (1 Kings 8:12), the cloud of glory. When the psalmist (Ps. 97:2) describes the inscrutable nature of God’s workings among the sons of men, he says, “Clouds and darkness are round about him.” God dwells in thick darkness.
Darkness (Isa. 13:9, 10; Matt. 24:29) also is a symbol of the judgments that attend on the coming of the Lord. It is a symbol of misery and adversity (Job 18:6; Ps. 107:10; Isa. 8:22; Ezek. 30:18). The “day of darkness” in Joel 2:2, caused by clouds of locusts, is a symbol of the obscurity which overhangs all divine proceedings. “Works of darkness” are impure actions (Eph. 5:11). “Outer darkness” refers to the darkness of the streets in the East, which are never lighted up by any public or private lamps after nightfall, in contrast with the blaze of cheerful light in the house. It is also a symbol of ignorance (Isa. 9:2; 60:2; Matt. 6:23) and of death (Job 10:21; 17:13).
Darling Ps. 22:20; 35:17) means an “only one.”
Dart An instrument of war; a light spear. “Fiery darts” (Eph. 6:16) are so called in allusion to the habit of discharging darts from the bow while they are on fire or armed with some combustible material. Arrows are compared to lightning (Deut. 32:23, 42; Ps. 7:13; 120:4).
Date The fruit of a species of palm (q.v.), the Phoenix dactilifera. This was a common tree in Palestine (Joel 1:12; Neh. 8:15). Palm branches were carried by the Jews on festive occasions, and especially at the feast of Tabernacles (Lev. 23:40; Neh. 8:15).
Dathan Welled; belonging to a fountain, a son of Eliab, a Reubenite, who joined Korah (q.v.) in his conspiracy, and with his accomplices was swallowed up by an earthquake (Num. 16:1; 26:9; Deut. 11:6; Ps. 106:17).
Daughter This word, besides its natural and proper sense, is used to designate, (1.) A niece or any female descendant (Gen. 20:12; 24:48; 28:6). (2.) Women as natives of a place, or as professing the religion of a place; as, “the daughters of Zion” (Isa. 3:16), “daughters of the Philistines” (2 Sam. 1:20). (3.) Small towns and villages lying around a city are its “daughters,” as related to the metropolis or mother city. Tyre is in this sense called the daughter of Sidon (Isa. 23:12). (4.) The people of Jerusalem are spoken of as “the daughters of Zion” (Isa. 37:22). (5.) The daughters of a tree are its boughs (Gen. 49:22). (6.) The “daughters of music” (Eccl. 12:4) are singing women.
David Beloved, the eighth and youngest son of Jesse, a citizen of Bethlehem. His father seems to have been a man in humble life. His mother’s name is not recorded. Some think she was the Nahash of 2 Sam. 17:25. As to his personal appearance, we only know that he was red-haired, with beautiful eyes and a fair face (1 Sam. 16:12; 17:42).
His early occupation was that of tending his father’s sheep on the uplands of Judah. From what we know of his after history, doubtless he frequently beguiled his time, when thus engaged, with his shepherd’s flute, while he drank in the many lessons taught him by the varied scenes spread around him. His first recorded exploits were his encounters with the wild beasts of the field. He mentions that with his own unaided hand he slew a lion and also a bear, when they came out against his flock, beating them to death in open conflict with his club (1 Sam. 17:34, 35).
While David, in the freshness of ruddy youth, was thus engaged with his flocks, Samuel paid an unexpected visit to Bethlehem, having been guided thither by divine direction (1 Sam. 16:1-13). There he offered up sacrifice, and called the elders of Israel and Jesse’s family to the sacrificial meal. Among all who appeared before him he failed to discover the one he sought. David was sent for, and the prophet immediately recognized him as the chosen of God, chosen to succeed Saul, who was now departing from the ways of God, on the throne of the kingdom. He accordingly, in anticipation, poured on his head the anointing oil. David went back again to his shepherd life, but “the Spirit of the Lord came upon David from that day forward,” and “the Spirit of the Lord departed from Saul” (1 Sam. 16:13, 14).
Not long after this David was sent for to soothe with his harp the troubled spirit of Saul, who suffered from a strange melancholy dejection. He played before the king so skilfully that Saul was greatly cheered, and began to entertain great affection for the young shepherd. After this he went home to Bethlehem. But he soon again came into prominence. The armies of the Philistines and of Israel were in battle array in the valley of Elah, some 16 miles south-west of Bethlehem; and David was sent by his father with provisions for his three brothers, who were then fighting on the side of the king. On his arrival in the camp of Israel, David (now about twenty years of age) was made aware of the state of matters when the champion of the Philistines, Goliath of Gath, came forth to defy Israel. David took his sling, and with a well-trained aim threw a stone “out of the brook,” which struck the giant’s forehead, so that he fell senseless to the ground. David then ran and slew him, and cut off his head with his own sword (1 Sam. 17). The result was a great victory to the Israelites, who pursued the Philistines to the gates of Gath and Ekron.
David’s popularity consequent on this heroic exploit awakened Saul’s jealousy (1 Sam. 18:6-16), which he showed in various ways. He conceived a bitter hatred toward him, and by various stratagems sought his death (1 Sam. 18-30). The deep-laid plots of the enraged king, who could not fail to observe that David “prospered exceedingly,” all proved futile, and only endeared the young hero the more to the people, and very specially to Jonathan, Saul’s son, between whom and David a life-long warm friendship was formed.
A fugitive. To escape from the vengeance of Saul, David fled to Ramah (1 Sam. 19:12-18) to Samuel, who received him, and he dwelt among the sons of the prophets, who were there under Samuel’s training. It is supposed by some that the sixth, seventh, and eleventh Psalms were composed by him at this time. This place was only 3 miles from the residence of Saul, who soon discovered whither the fugitive had gone, and tried ineffectually to bring him back. Jonathan made a fruitless effort to bring his father to a better state of mind toward David (1 Sam. 20), who, being made aware of the fact, saw no hope of safety but in flight to a distance. We accordingly find him first at Nob (21:1-9) and then at Gath, the chief city of the Philistines. The king of the Philistines would not admit him into his service, as he expected that he would, and David accordingly now betook himself to the stronghold of Adullam (22:1-4; 1 Chr. 12:8-18). Here in a short time 400 men gathered around him and acknowledged him as their leader. It was at this time that David, amid the harassment and perils of his position, cried, “Oh that one would give me drink of the water of the well of Bethlehem;” when three of his heroes broke through the lines of the Philistines and brought him the water for which he longed (2 Sam. 23:13-17), but which he would not drink.
In his rage at the failure of all his efforts to seize David, Saul gave orders for the massacre of the entire priestly family at Nob, “persons who wore a linen ephod”, to the number of eighty-five persons, who were put to death by Doeg the Edomite. The sad tidings of the massacre were brought to David by Abiathar, a son of Ahimelech, the only one who escaped. Comp. Ps. 52.
Hearing that Keilah, a town on the western frontier, was harassed by the Philistines, David with his men relieved it (1 Sam. 23:1-14); and then, for fear of Saul, he fled to the strongholds in the “hill country” of Judah. Comp. Ps. 31. While encamped there, in the forest in the district of Ziph, he was visited by Jonathan, who spoke to him words of encouragement (23:16-18). The two now parted never to meet again. Saul continued his pursuit of David, who narrowly escaped from him at this time, and fled to the crags and ravines of Engedi, on the western shore of the Dead Sea (1 Sam. 23:29). Here Saul, who still pursued him with his army, narrowly escaped, through the generous forbearance of David, and was greatly affected by what David had done for him. He returned home from pursuing him, and David betook himself to Maon, where, with his 600 men, he maintained himself by contributions gathered from the district. Here occurred the incident connected with Nabal and his wife Abigail (1 Sam. 25), whom David married after Nabal’s death.
Saul again went forth (1 Sam. 26) in pursuit of David, who had hid himself “in the hill Hachilah, which is before Jeshimon,” in the wilderness of Ziph, and was a second time spared through his forbearance. He returned home, professing shame and penitence for the way in which he had treated David, and predicting his elevation to the throne.
Fighting against Israel. Harassed by the necessity of moving from place to place through fear of Saul, David once more sought refuge among the Philistines (1 Sam. 27). He was welcomed by the king, who assigned him Ziklag as his residence. Here David lived among his followers for some time as an independent chief engaged in frequent war with the Amalekites and other tribes on the south of Judah.
Achish summoned David with his men to join his army against Saul; but the lords of the Philistines were suspicious of David’s loyalty, and therefore he was sent back to Ziklag, which he found to his dismay may had been pillaged and burnt during his brief absence. David pursued after the raiders, the Amalekites, and completely routed them. On his return to Ziklag tidings reached him of Saul’s death (2 Sam. 1). An Amalekite brought Saul’s crown and bracelet and laid them at his feet. David and his men rent their clothes and mourned for Saul, who had been defeated in battle near Mount Gilboa. David composed a beautiful elegy, the most beautiful of all extant Hebrew odes, a “lamentation over Saul and over Jonathan his son” (2 Sam. 1:18-27). It bore the title of “The Bow,” and was to be taught to the children, that the memory of Saul and Jonathan might be preserved among them. “Behold, it is written in the book of Jasher” (q.v.).
David king over Judah. David and his men now set out for Hebron under divine direction (2 Sam. 2:1-4). There they were cordially welcomed, and he was at once anointed as king. He was now about thirty years of age.
But his title to the throne was not undisputed. Abner took Ish-bosheth, Saul’s only remaining son, over the Jordan to Mahanaim, and there crowned him as king. Then began a civil war in Israel. The first encounter between the two opposing armies, led on the one side by Abner, and on the other by Joab, took place at the pool of Gibeon. It resulted in the defeat of Abner. Other encounters, however, between Israel and Judah followed (2 Sam. 3:1, 5), but still success was on the side of David. For the space of seven and a half years David reigned in Hebron. Abner now sided with David, and sought to promote his advancement; but was treacherously put to death by Joab in revenge for his having slain his brother Asahel at Gibeon (3:22-39). This was greatly to David’s regret. He mourned for the death of Abner. Shortly after this Ish-bosheth was also treacherously put to death by two Canaanites of Beeroth; and there being now no rival, David was anointed king over all Israel (4:1-12).
David king over all Israel (2 Sam. 5:1-5; 1 Chr. 11:1-3). The elders of Israel now repaired to Hebron and offered allegiance to David in name of all the people, among whom the greatest enthusiasm prevailed. He was anointed king over all Israel, and sought out a new seat of government, more suitable than Hebron, as the capital of his empire. At this time there was a Jebusite fortress, “the stronghold”, on the hill of Zion, called also Jebus. This David took from the Jebusites, and made it Israel’s capital, and established here his residence, and afterwards built for himself a palace by the aid of Tyrian tradesmen. The Philistines, who had for some time observed a kind of truce, now made war against David; but were defeated in battle at a place afterwards called, in remembrance of the victory, Baal-perazim. Again they invaded the land, and were a second time routed by him. He thus delivered Israel from their enemies.
David now resolved to bring up the ark of the covenant to his new capital (2 Sam. 6). It was in the house of Abinadab at Kirjath-jearim, about 7 miles from Jerusalem, where it had been for many years, from the time when the Philistines had sent it home (1 Sam. 6; 7). In consequence of the death of Uzzah (for it was a divine ordinance that only the Levites should handle the ark, Num. 4), who had put forth his hand to steady the ark when the cart in which it was being conveyed shook by reason of the roughness of the road, David stayed the procession, and conveyed the ark into the house of Obed-edom, a Philistine from Gath. After three months David brought the ark from the house of Obed-edom up to Jerusalem. Comp. Ps. 24. Here it was placed in a new tent or tabernacle which David erected for the purpose. About seventy years had passed since it had stood in the tabernacle at Shiloh. The old tabernacle was now at Gibeah, at which Zadok ministered. David now (1 Chr. 16) carefully set in order all the ritual of divine worship at Jerusalem, along with Abiathar the high priest. A new religious era began. The service of praise was for the first time introduced into public worship. Zion became henceforth “God’s holy hill.”
David’s wars. David now entered on a series of conquests which greatly extended and strengthened his kingdom (2 Sam. 8). In a few years the whole territory from the Euphrates to the river of Egypt, and from Gaza on the west to Thapsacus on the east, was under his sway (2 Sam. 8:3-13; 10).
David’s fall. He had now reached the height of his glory. He ruled over a vast empire, and his capital was enriched with the spoils of many lands. But in the midst of all this success he fell, and his character became stained with the sin of adultery (2 Sam. 11:2-27). It has been noted as characteristic of the Bible that while his military triumphs are recorded in a few verses, the sad story of his fall is given in detail, a story full of warning, and therefore recorded. This crime, in the attempt to conceal it, led to anoter. He was guilty of murder. Uriah, whom he had foully wronged, an officer of the Gibborim, the corps of heros (23:39), was, by his order, “set in the front of the hottest battle” at the siege of Rabbah, in order that he might be put to death. Nathan the prophet (2 Sam. 7:1-17; 12:1-23) was sent by God to bring home his crimes to the conscience of the guilty monarch. He became a true penitent. He bitterly bewailed his sins before God. The thirty-second and fifty-first Psalms reveal the deep struggles of his soul, and his spiritual recovery.
Bathsheba became his wife after Uriah’s death. Her first-born son died, according to the word of the prophet. She gave birth to a second son, whom David called Solomon, and who ultimately succeeded him on the throne (2 Sam. 12:24, 25).
Peace. After the successful termination of all his wars, David formed the idea of building a temple for the ark of God. This he was not permitted to carry into execution, because he had been a man of war. God, however, sent Nathan to him with a gracious message (2 Sam. 7:1-16). On receiving it he went into the sanctuary, the tent where the ark was, and sat before the Lord, and poured out his heart in words of devout thanksgiving (18-29). The building of the temple was reserved for his son Solomon, who would be a man of peace (1 Chr. 22:9; 28:3).
A cloudy evening. Hitherto David’s carrer had been one of great prosperity and success. Now cloudy and dark days came. His eldest son Amnon, whose mother was Ahinoam of Jezreel, was guilty of a great and shameful crime (2 Sam. 13). This was the beginning of the disasters of his later years. After two years Absalom terribly avenged the crime against Tamar, and put Amnon to death. This brought sore trouble to David’s heart. Absalom, afraid of the consequences of his guilt, fled to Geshur beyond Jordan, where he remained for three years, when he was brought back through the intrigue of Joab (2 Sam. 14).
After this there fell upon the land the calamity of three years’ famine (2 Sam. 21:1-14). This was soon after followed by a pestilence, brought upon the land as a punishment for David’s sinful pride in numbering the people (2 Sam. 24), in which no fewer than 70,000 perished in the space of three days.
Rebellion of Absalom. The personal respect for David was sadly lowered by the incident of Bathsheba. There was a strong popular sentiment against the taking of the census, and the outburst of the plague in connection with it deepened the feeling of jealously that had begun to manifest itself among some of the tribes against David. Absalom, taking full advantage of this state of things, gradually gained over the people, and at length openly rebelled against his father, and usurped the throne. Ahithophel was Absalom’s chief counsellor. The revolt began in Hebron, the capital of Judah. Absalom was there proclaimed king. David was now in imminent danger, and he left Jerusalem (2 Sam. 15:13-20), and once more became a fugitive. It was a momentous day in Israel. The incidents of it are recorded with a fulness of detail greater than of any other day in Old Testament history. David fled with his followers to Mahanarm, on the east of Jordan. An unnatural civil war broke out. After a few weeks the rival armies were mustered and organized. They met in hostile array at the wood of Ephraim (2 Sam. 18:1-8). Absalom’s army was defeated, and himself put to death by the hand of Joab (9-18). The tidings of the death of his rebellious son filled the heart of David with the most poignant grief. He “went up to the chamber over the gate, and wept” (33), giving utterance to the heart-broken cry, “Would God I had died for thee, O Absalom, my son, my son!” Peace was now restored, and David returned to Jerusalem and resumed the direction of affairs. An unhappy dispute arose between the men of Judah and the men of Israel (19:41-43). Sheba, a Benjamite, headed a revolt of the men of Israel. He was pursued to Abelbeth-maachah, and was there put to death, and so the revolt came to an end.
The end. After the suppression of the rebellion of Absalom and that of Sheba, ten comparatively peaceful years of David’s life passed away. During those years he seems to have been principally engaged in accumulating treasures of every kind for the great temple at Jerusalem, which it was reserved to his successor to build (1 Chr. 22; 28; 29), a house which was to be “exceeding magnifical, of fame and of glory throughout all countries” (22:5). The exciting and laborious life he had spent, and the dangers and trials through which he had passed, had left him an enfeebled man, prematurely old. It became apparent that his life was now drawing to its close. A new palace conspiracy broke out as to who should be his successor. Joab favoured Adonijah. The chiefs of his party met at the “Fuller’s spring,” in the valley of Kidron, to proclaim him king; but Nathan hastened on a decision on the part of David in favour of Solomon, and so the aim of Adonijah’s party failed. Solomon was brought to Jerusalem, and was anointed king and seated on his father’s throne (1 Kings 1:11-53). David’s last words are a grand utterance, revealing his unfailing faith in God, and his joyful confidence in his gracious covenant promises (2 Sam. 23:1-7).
After a reign of forty years and six months (2 Sam. 5:5; 1 Chr. 3:4) David died (B.C. 1015) at the age of seventy years, “and was buried in the city of David.” His tomb is still pointed out on Mount Zion.
Both in his prophetical and in his regal character David was a type of the Messiah (1 Sam. 16:13). The book of Psalms commonly bears the title of the “Psalms of David,” from the circumstance that he was the largest contributor (about eighty psalms) to the collection. (See PSALMS.)
“The greatness of David was felt when he was gone. He had lived in harmony with both the priesthood and the prophets; a sure sign that the spirit of his government had been throughly loyal to the higher aims of the theocracy. The nation had not been oppressed by him, but had been left in the free enjoyment of its ancient liberties. As far as his power went he had striven to act justly to all (2 Sam. 8:15). His weak indulgence to his sons, and his own great sin besides, had been bitterly atoned, and were forgotten at his death in the remembrance of his long-tried worth. He had reigned thirty-three years in Jerusalem and seven and a half at Hebron (2 Sam. 5:5). Israel at his accession had reached the lowest point of national depression; its new-born unity rudely dissolved; its territory assailed by the Philistines. But he had left it an imperial power, with dominions like those of Egypt or Assyria. The sceptre of Solomon was already, before his father’s death, owned from the Mediterranean to the Euphrates, and from the Orontes to the Red Sea.”, Geikie’s Hours etc., iii.
David, City of (1.) David took from the Jebusites the fortress of Mount Zion. He “dwelt in the fort, and called it the city of David” (1 Chr. 11:7). This was the name afterwards given to the castle and royal palace on Mount Zion, as distinguished from Jerusalem generally (1 Kings 3:1; 8:1), It was on the south-west side of Jerusalem, opposite the temple mount, with which it was connected by a bridge over the Tyropoeon valley.
(2) Bethlehem is called the “city of David” (Luke 2:4, 11), because it was David’s birth-place and early home (1 Sam. 17:12).
Day The Jews reckoned the day from sunset to sunset (Lev. 23:32). It was originally divided into three parts (Ps. 55:17). “The heat of the day” (1 Sam. 11:11; Neh. 7:3) was at our nine o’clock, and “the cool of the day” just before sunset (Gen. 3:8). Before the Captivity the Jews divided the night into three watches, (1) from sunset to midnight (Lam. 2:19); (2) from midnight till the cock-crowing (Judg. 7:19); and (3) from the cock-crowing till sunrise (Ex. 14:24). In the New Testament the division of the Greeks and Romans into four watches was adopted (Mark 13:35). (See WATCHES.)
The division of the day by hours is first mentioned in Dan. 3:6, 15; 4:19; 5:5. This mode of reckoning was borrowed from the Chaldeans. The reckoning of twelve hours was from sunrise to sunset, and accordingly the hours were of variable length (John 11:9).
The word “day” sometimes signifies an indefinite time (Gen. 2:4; Isa. 22:5; Heb. 3:8, etc.). In Job 3:1 it denotes a birthday, and in Isa. 2:12, Acts 17:31, and 2 Tim. 1:18, the great day of final judgment.
Day’s journey The usual length of a day’s journey in the East, on camel or horseback, in six or eight hours, is about 25 or 30 miles. The “three days’ journey” mentioned in Ex. 3:18 is simply a journey which would occupy three days in going and returning.
Daysman An umpire or arbiter or judge (Job 9:33). This word is formed from the Latin diem dicere, i.e., to fix a day for hearing a cause. Such an one is empowered by mutual consent to decide the cause, and to “lay his hand”, i.e., to impose his authority, on both, and enforce his sentence.
Dayspring (Job 38:12; Luke 1:78), the dawn of the morning; daybreak. (Comp. Isa. 60:1, 2; Mal. 4:2; Rev. 22:16.)
Daystar Which precedes and accompanies the sun-rising. It is found only in 2 Pet. 1:19, where it denotes the manifestation of Christ to the soul, imparting spiritual light and comfort. He is the “bright and morning star” of Rev. 2:28; 22:16. (Comp. Num. 24:17.)
Deacon Anglicized form of the Greek word diaconos, meaning a “runner,” “messenger,” “servant.” For a long period a feeling of mutual jealousy had existed between the “Hebrews,” or Jews proper, who spoke the sacred language of palestine, and the “Hellenists,” or Jews of the Grecian speech, who had adopted the Grecian language, and read the Septuagint version of the Bible instead of the Hebrew. This jealousy early appeared in the Christian community. It was alleged by the Hellenists that their widows were overlooked in the daily distribution of alms. This spirit must be checked. The apostles accordingly advised the disciples to look out for seven men of good report, full of the Holy Ghost, and men of practical wisdom, who should take entire charge of this distribution, leaving them free to devote themselves entirely to the spiritual functions of their office (Acts 6:1-6). This was accordingly done. Seven men were chosen, who appear from their names to have been Hellenists. The name “deacon” is nowhere applied to them in the New Testament; they are simply called “the seven” (21:8). Their office was at first secular, but it afterwards became also spiritual; for among other qualifications they must also be “apt to teach” (1 Tim. 3: 8-12). Both Philip and Stephen, who were of “the seven,” preached; they did “the work of evangelists.”
Deaconess Rom. 16:1, 3, 12; Phil. 4:2, 3; 1 Tim. 3:11; 5:9, 10; Titus 2:3, 4). In these passages it is evident that females were then engaged in various Christian ministrations. Pliny makes mention of them also in his letter to Trajan (A.D. 110).
Dead Sea The name given by Greek writers of the second century to that inland sea called in Scripture the “salt sea” (Gen. 14:3; Num. 34:12), the “sea of the plain” (Deut. 3:17), the “east sea” (Ezek. 47:18; Joel 2:20), and simply “the sea” (Ezek. 47:8). The Arabs call it Bahr Lut, i.e., the Sea of Lot. It lies about 16 miles in a straight line to the east of Jerusalem. Its surface is 1,292 feet below the surface of the Mediterranean Sea. It covers an area of about 300 square miles. Its depth varies from 1,310 to 11 feet. From various phenomena that have been observed, its bottom appears to be still subsiding. It is about 53 miles long, and of an average breadth of 10 miles. It has no outlet, the great heat of that region causing such rapid evaporation that its average depth, notwithstanding the rivers that run into it (see JORDAN), is maintained with little variation. The Jordan alone discharges into it no less than six million tons of water every twenty-four hours.
The waters of the Dead Sea contain 24.6 per cent. of mineral salts, about seven times as much as in ordinary sea-water; thus they are unusually buoyant. Chloride of magnesium is most abundant; next to that chloride of sodium (common salt). But terraces of alluvial deposits in the deep valley of the Jordan show that formerly one great lake extended from the Waters of Merom to the foot of the watershed in the Arabah. The waters were then about 1,400 feet above the present level of the Dead Sea, or slightly above that of the Mediterranean, and at that time were much less salt.
Nothing living can exist in this sea. “The fish carried down by the Jordan at once die, nor can even mussels or corals live in it; but it is a fable that no bird can fly over it, or that there are no living creatures on its banks. Dr. Tristram found on the shores three kinds of kingfishers, gulls, ducks, and grebes, which he says live on the fish which enter the sea in shoals, and presently die. He collected one hundred and eighteen species of birds, some new to science, on the shores, or swimming or flying over the waters. The cane-brakes which fringe it at some parts are the homes of about forty species of mammalia, several of them animals unknown in England; and innumerable tropical or semi-tropical plants perfume the atmosphere wherever fresh water can reach. The climate is perfect and most delicious, and indeed there is perhaps no place in the world where a sanatorium could be established with so much prospect of benefit as at Ain Jidi (Engedi).”, Geikie’s Hours, etc.
Deal, Tenth See OMER.
Dearth A scarcity of provisions (1 Kings 17). There were frequent dearths in Palestine. In the days of Abram there was a “famine in the land” (Gen. 12:10), so also in the days of Jacob (47:4, 13). We read also of dearths in the time of the judges (Ruth 1:1), and of the kings (2 Sam. 21:1; 1 Kings 18:2; 2 Kings 4:38; 8:1).
In New Testament times there was an extensive famine in Palestine (Acts 11:28) in the fourth year of the reign of the emperor Claudius (A.D. 44 and 45).
Death May be simply defined as the termination of life. It is represented under a variety of aspects in Scripture: (1.) “The dust shall return to the earth as it was” (Eccl. 12:7).
(2.) “Thou takest away their breath, they die” (Ps. 104:29).
(3.) It is the dissolution of “our earthly house of this tabernacle” (2 Cor. 5:1); the “putting off this tabernacle” (2 Pet. 1:13, 14).
(4.) Being “unclothed” (2 Cor. 5:3, 4).
(5.) “Falling on sleep” (Ps. 76:5; Jer. 51:39; Acts 13:36; 2 Pet. 3:9.
(6.) “I go whence I shall not return” (Job 10:21); “Make me to know mine end” (Ps. 39:4); “to depart” (Phil. 1:23).
The grave is represented as “the gates of death” (Job 38:17; Ps. 9:13; 107:18). The gloomy silence of the grave is spoken of under the figure of the “shadow of death” (Jer. 2:6).
Death is the effect of sin (Heb. 2:14), and not a “debt of nature.” It is but once (9:27), universal (Gen. 3:19), necessary (Luke 2:28-30). Jesus has by his own death taken away its sting for all his followers (1 Cor. 15:55-57).
There is a spiritual death in trespasses and sins, i.e., the death of the soul under the power of sin (Rom. 8:6; Eph. 2:1, 3; Col. 2:13).
The “second death” (Rev. 2:11) is the everlasting perdition of the wicked (Rev. 21:8), and “second” in respect to natural or temporal death.
THE DEATH OF CHRIST is the procuring cause incidentally of all the blessings men enjoy on earth. But specially it is the procuring cause of the actual salvation of all his people, together with all the means that lead thereto. It does not make their salvation merely possible, but certain (Matt. 18:11; Rom. 5:10; 2 Cor. 5:21; Gal. 1:4; 3:13; Eph. 1:7; 2:16; Rom. 8:32-35).
Debir Oracle town; sanctuary. (1.) One of the eleven cities to the west of Hebron, in the highlands of Judah (Josh. 15:49; Judg. 1:11-15). It was originally one of the towns of the Anakim (Josh. 15:15), and was also called Kirjath-sepher (q.v.) and Kirjath-sannah (49). Caleb, who had conquered and taken possession of the town and district of Hebron (Josh. 14:6-15), offered the hand of his daughter to any one who would successfully lead a party against Debir. Othniel, his younger brother (Judg. 1:13; 3:9), achieved the conquest, and gained Achsah as his wife. She was not satisfied with the portion her father gave her, and as she was proceeding toward her new home, she “lighted from off her ass” and said to him, “Give me a blessing [i.e., a dowry]: for thou hast given me a south land” (Josh. 15:19, A.V.); or, as in the Revised Version, “Thou hast set me in the land of the south”, i.e., in the Negeb, outside the rich valley of Hebron, in the dry and barren land. “Give me also springs of water. And he gave her the upper springs, and the nether springs.”
Debir has been identified with the modern Edh-Dhaheriyeh, i.e., “the well on the ridge”, to the south of Hebron.
(2.) A place near the “valley of Achor” (Josh. 15:7), on the north boundary of Judah, between Jerusalem and Jericho.
(3.) The king of Eglon, one of the five Canaanitish kings who were hanged by Joshua (Josh. 10:3, 23) after the victory at Gibeon. These kings fled and took refuge in a cave at Makkedah. Here they were kept confined till Joshua returned from the pursuit of their discomfited armies, when he caused them to be brought forth, and “Joshua smote them, and slew them, and hanged them on five trees” (26).
Deborah A bee. (1.) Rebekah’s nurse. She accompanied her mistress when she left her father’s house in Padan-aram to become the wife of Isaac (Gen. 24:59). Many years afterwards she died at Bethel, and was buried under the “oak of weeping”, Allon-bachuth (35:8).
(2.) A prophetess, “wife” (woman?) of Lapidoth. Jabin, the king of Hazor, had for twenty years held Israel in degrading subjection. The spirit of patriotism seemed crushed out of the nation. In this emergency Deborah roused the people from their lethargy. Her fame spread far and wide. She became a “mother in Israel” (Judg. 4:6, 14; 5:7), and “the children of Israel came up to her for judgment” as she sat in her tent under the palm tree “between Ramah and Bethel.” Preparations were everywhere made by her direction for the great effort to throw off the yoke of bondage. She summoned Barak from Kadesh to take the command of 10,000 men of Zebulun and Naphtali, and lead them to Mount Tabor on the plain of Esdraelon at its north-east end. With his aid she organized this army. She gave the signal for attack, and the Hebrew host rushed down impetuously upon the army of Jabin, which was commanded by Sisera, and gained a great and decisive victory. The Canaanitish army almost wholly perished. That was a great and ever-memorable day in Israel. In Judg. 5 is given the grand triumphal ode, the “song of Deborah,” which she wrote in grateful commemoration of that great deliverance. (See LAPIDOTH, JABIN .)
Debt The Mosaic law encouraged the practice of lending (Deut. 15:7; Ps. 37:26; Matt. 5:42); but it forbade the exaction of interest except from foreigners. Usury was strongly condemned (Prov. 28:8; Ezek. 18:8, 13, 17; 22:12; Ps. 15:5). On the Sabbatical year all pecuniary obligations were cancelled (Deut. 15:1-11). These regulations prevented the accumulation of debt.
Debtor Various regulations as to the relation between debtor and creditor are laid down in the Scriptures.
(1.) The debtor was to deliver up as a pledge to the creditor what he could most easily dispense with (Deut. 24:10, 11).
(2.) A mill, or millstone, or upper garment, when given as a pledge, could not be kept over night (Ex. 22:26, 27).
(3.) A debt could not be exacted during the Sabbatic year (Deut. 15:1-15).
For other laws bearing on this relation see Lev. 25:14, 32, 39; Matt. 18:25, 34.
(4.) A surety was liable in the same way as the original debtor (Prov. 11:15; 17:18).
Decalogue The name given by the Greek fathers to the ten commandments; “the ten words,” as the original is more literally rendered (Ex. 20:3-17). These commandments were at first written on two stone slabs (31:18), which were broken by Moses throwing them down on the ground (32:19). They were written by God a second time (34:1). The decalogue is alluded to in the New Testament five times (Matt. 5:17, 18, 19; Mark 10:19; Luke 18:20; Rom. 7:7, 8; 13:9; 1 Tim. 1:9, 10).
These commandments have been divided since the days of Origen the Greek father, as they stand in the Confession of all the Reformed Churches except the Lutheran. The division adopted by Luther, and which has ever since been received in the Lutheran Church, makes the first two commandments one, and the third the second, and so on to the last, which is divided into two. “Thou shalt not covet thy neighbour’s house” being ranked as ninth, and “Thou shalt not covet thy neighbour’s wife,” etc., the tenth. (See COMMANDMENTS.)
Decapolis Ten cities=deka, ten, and polis, a city, a district on the east and south-east of the Sea of Galilee containing “ten cities,” which were chiefly inhabited by Greeks. It included a portion of Bashan and Gilead, and is mentioned three times in the New Testament (Matt. 4:25; Mark 5:20; 7:31). These cities were Scythopolis, i.e., “city of the Scythians”, (ancient Bethshean, the only one of the ten cities on the west of Jordan), Hippos, Gadara, Pella (to which the Christians fled just before the destruction of Jerusalem), Philadelphia (ancient Rabbath-ammon), Gerasa, Dion, Canatha, Raphana, and Damascus. When the Romans conquered Syria (B.C. 65) they rebuilt, and endowed with certain privileges, these “ten cities,” and the province connected with them they called “Decapolis.”
Decision, Valley of A name given to the valley of Jehoshaphat (q.v.) as the vale of the sentence. The scene of Jehovah’s signal inflictions on Zion’s enemies (Joel 3:14; marg., “valley of concision or threshing”).
Decrees of God “The decrees of God are his eternal, unchangeable, holy, wise, and sovereign purpose, comprehending at once all things that ever were or will be in their causes, conditions, successions, and relations, and determining their certain futurition. The several contents of this one eternal purpose are, because of the limitation of our faculties, necessarily conceived of by us in partial aspects, and in logical relations, and are therefore styled Decrees.” The decree being the act of an infinite, absolute, eternal, unchangeable, and sovereign Person, comprehending a plan including all his works of all kinds, great and small, from the beginning of creation to an unending eternity; ends as well as means, causes as well as effects, conditions and instrumentalities as well as the events which depend upon them, must be incomprehensible by the finite intellect of man. The decrees are eternal (Acts 15:18; Eph. 1:4; 2 Thess. 2:13), unchangeable (Ps. 33:11; Isa. 46:9), and comprehend all things that come to pass (Eph. 1:11; Matt. 10:29, 30; Eph. 2:10; Acts 2:23; 4:27, 28; Ps. 17:13, 14).
The decrees of God are (1) efficacious, as they respect those events he has determined to bring about by his own immediate agency; or (2) permissive, as they respect those events he has determined that free agents shall be permitted by him to effect.
This doctrine ought to produce in our minds “humility, in view of the infinite greatness and sovereignty of God, and of the dependence of man; confidence and implicit reliance upon wisdom, rightenousness, goodness, and immutability of God’s purpose.”
Dedan Low ground. (1.) A son of Raamah (Gen. 10:7). His descendants are mentioned in Isa. 21:13, and Ezek. 27:15. They probably settled among the sons of Cush, on the north-west coast of the Persian Gulf.
(2.) A son of Jokshan, Abraham’s son by Keturah (1 Chr. 1:32). His descendants settled on the Syrian borders about the territory of Edom. They probably led a pastoral life.
Dedanim The descendants of Dedan, the son of Raamah. They are mentioned in Isa. 21:13 as sending out “travelling companies” which lodged “in the forest of Arabia.” They are enumerated also by Ezekiel (27:20) among the merchants who supplied Tyre with precious things.
Dedication, Feast of the (John 10:22, 42), i.e., the feast of the renewing. It was instituted B.C. 164 to commemorate the purging of the temple after its pollution by Antiochus Epiphanes (B.C. 167), and the rebuilding of the altar after the Syrian invaders had been driven out by Judas Maccabaeus. It lasted for eight days, beginning on the 25th of the month Chisleu (December), which was often a period of heavy rains (Ezra 10:9, 13). It was an occasion of much rejoicing and festivity.
But there were other dedications of the temple. (1) That of Solomon’s temple (1 Kings 8:2; 2 Chr. 5:3); (2) the dedication in the days of Hezekiah (2 Chr. 29); and (3) the dedication of the temple after the Captivity (Ezra 6:16).
Deep Used to denote (1) the grave or the abyss (Rom. 10:7; Luke 8:31); (2) the deepest part of the sea (Ps. 69:15); (3) the chaos mentioned in Gen. 1:2; (4) the bottomless pit, hell (Rev. 9:1, 2; 11:7; 20:13).
Degrees, Song of Song of steps, a title given to each of these fifteen psalms, 120-134 inclusive. The probable origin of this name is the circumstance that these psalms came to be sung by the people on the ascents or goings up to Jerusalem to attend the three great festivals (Deut. 16:16). They were well fitted for being sung by the way from their peculiar form, and from the sentiments they express. “They are characterized by brevity, by a key-word, by epanaphora [i.e, repetition], and by their epigrammatic style…More than half of them are cheerful, and all of them hopeful.” They are sometimes called “Pilgrim Songs.” Four of them were written by David, one (127) by Solomon, and the rest are anonymous.
Dehavites Villagers, one of the Assyrian tribes which Asnapper sent to repopulate Samaria (Ezra 4:9). They were probably a nomad Persian tribe on the east of the Caspian Sea, and near the Sea of Azof.
Delaiah Freed by Jehovah. (1.) The head of the twenty-third division of the priestly order (1 Chr. 24:18).
(2.) A son of Shemaiah, and one of the courtiers to whom Jeremiah’s first roll of prophecy was read (Jer. 36:12).
(3.) The head of one of the bands of exiles that returned under Zerubbabel to Jerusalem (Ezra 2:60; Neh. 7:62).
Delilah Languishing, a Philistine woman who dwelt in the valley of Sorek (Judg. 16:4-20). She was bribed by the “lords of the Philistines” to obtain from Samson the secret of his strength and the means of overcoming it (Judg. 16:4-18). She tried on three occasions to obtain from him this secret in vain. On the fourth occasion she wrung it from him. She made him sleep upon her knees, and then called the man who was waiting to help her; who “cut off the seven locks of his head,” and so his “strength went from him.” (See SAMSON.)
Deluge The name given to Noah’s flood, the history of which is recorded in Gen. 7 and 8.
It began in the year 2516 B.C., and continued twelve lunar months and ten days, or exactly one solar year.
The cause of this judgment was the corruption and violence that filled the earth in the ninth generation from Adam. God in righteous indignation determined to purge the earth of the ungodly race. Amid a world of crime and guilt there was one household that continued faithful and true to God, the household of Noah. “Noah was a just man and perfect in his generations.”
At the command of God, Noah made an ark 300 cubits long, 50 broad, and 30 high. He slowly proceeded with this work during a period of one hundred and twenty years (Gen. 6:3). At length the purpose of God began to be carried into effect. The following table exhibits the order of events as they occurred:
In the six hundredth year of his life Noah is commanded by God to enter the ark, taking with him his wife, and his three sons with their wives (Gen. 7:1-10).
The rain begins on the seventeenth day of the second month (Gen. 7:11-17).
The rain ceases, the waters prevail, fifteen cubits upward (Gen. 7:18-24).
The ark grounds on one of the mountains of Ararat on the seventeenth day of the seventh month, or one hundred and fifty days after the Deluge began (Gen. 8:1-4).
Tops of the mountains visible on the first day of the tenth month (Gen. 8:5).
Raven and dove sent out forty days after this (Gen. 8:6-9).
Dove again sent out seven days afterwards; and in the evening she returns with an olive leaf in her mouth (Gen. 8:10, 11).
Dove sent out the third time after an interval of other seven days, and returns no more (Gen. 8:12).
The ground becomes dry on the first day of the first month of the new year (Gen. 8:13).
Noah leaves the ark on the twenty-seventh day of the second month (Gen. 8:14-19).
The historical truth of the narrative of the Flood is established by the references made to it by our Lord (Matt. 24:37; comp. Luke 17:26). Peter speaks of it also (1 Pet. 3:20; 2 Pet. 2:5). In Isa. 54:9 the Flood is referred to as “the waters of Noah.” The Biblical narrative clearly shows that so far as the human race was concerned the Deluge was universal; that it swept away all men living except Noah and his family, who were preserved in the ark; and that the present human race is descended from those who were thus preserved.
Traditions of the Deluge are found among all the great divisions of the human family; and these traditions, taken as a whole, wonderfully agree with the Biblical narrative, and agree with it in such a way as to lead to the conclusion that the Biblical is the authentic narrative, of which all these traditions are more or less corrupted versions. The most remarkable of these traditions is that recorded on tablets prepared by order of Assur-bani-pal, the king of Assyria. These were, however, copies of older records which belonged to somewhere about B.C. 2000, and which formed part of the priestly library at Erech (q.v.), “the ineradicable remembrance of a real and terrible event.” (See NOAH; CHALDEA.)
Demas A companion and fellow-labourer of Paul during his first imprisonment at Rome (Philemon 1:24; Col. 4:14). It appears, however, that the love of the world afterwards mastered him, and he deserted the apostle (2 Tim. 4:10).
Demetrius (1.) A silversmith at Ephesus, whose chief occupation was to make “silver shrines for Diana” (q.v.), Acts 19:24, i.e., models either of the temple of Diana or of the statue of the goddess. This trade brought to him and his fellow-craftsmen “no small gain,” for these shrines found a ready sale among the countless thousands who came to this temple from all parts of Asia Minor. This traffic was greatly endangered by the progress of the gospel, and hence Demetrius excited the tradesmen employed in the manufacture of these shrines, and caused so great a tumult that “the whole city was filled with confusion.”
(2.) A Christian who is spoken of as having “a good report of all men, and of the truth itself” (3 John 1:12).
Demon See DAEMON.
Den A lair of wild beasts (Ps. 10:9; 104:22; Job 37:8); the hole of a venomous reptile (Isa. 11:8); a recess for secrecy “in dens and caves of the earth” (Heb. 11:38); a resort of thieves (Matt. 21:13; Mark 11:17). Daniel was cast into “the den of lions” (Dan. 6:16, 17). Some recent discoveries among the ruins of Babylon have brought to light the fact that the practice of punishing offenders against the law by throwing them into a den of lions was common.
Deputy In 1 Kings 22:47, means a prefect; one set over others. The same Hebrew word is rendered “officer;” i.e., chief of the commissariat appointed by Solomon (1 Kings 4:5, etc.).
In Esther 8:9; 9:3 (R.V., “governor”) it denotes a Persian prefect “on this side” i.e., in the region west of the Euphrates. It is the modern word pasha.
In Acts 13:7, 8, 12; 18:12, it denotes a proconsul; i.e., the governor of a Roman province holding his appointment from the senate. The Roman provinces were of two kinds, (1) senatorial and (2) imperial. The appointment of a governor to the former was in the hands of the senate, and he bore the title of proconsul (Gr. anthupatos). The appointment of a governor to the latter was in the hands of the emperor, and he bore the title of propraetor (Gr. antistrategos).
Derbe A small town on the eastern part of the upland plain of Lycaonia, about 20 miles from Lystra. Paul passed through Derbe on his route from Cilicia to Iconium, on his second missionary journey (Acts 16:1), and probably also on his third journey (18:23; 19:1). On his first journey (14:20, 21) he came to Derbe from the other side; i.e., from Iconium. It was the native place of Gaius, one of Paul’s companions (20:4). He did not here suffer persecution (2 Tim. 3:11).
Desert (1.) Heb. midbar, “pasture-ground;” an open tract for pasturage; a common (Joel 2:22). The “backside of the desert” (Ex. 3:1) is the west of the desert, the region behind a man, as the east is the region in front. The same Hebrew word is rendered “wildernes,” and is used of the country lying between Egypt and Palestine (Gen. 21:14, 21; Ex. 4:27; 19:2; Josh. 1:4), the wilderness of the wanderings. It was a grazing tract, where the flocks and herds of the Israelites found pasturage during the whole of their journey to the Promised Land.
The same Hebrew word is used also to denote the wilderness of Arabia, which in winter and early spring supplies good pasturage to the flocks of the nomad tribes than roam over it (1 Kings 9:18).
The wilderness of Judah is the mountainous region along the western shore of the Dead Sea, where David fed his father’s flocks (1 Sam. 17:28; 26:2). Thus in both of these instances the word denotes a country without settled inhabitants and without streams of water, but having good pasturage for cattle; a country of wandering tribes, as distinguished from that of a settled people (Isa. 35:1; 50:2; Jer. 4:11). Such, also, is the meaning of the word “wilderness” in Matt. 3:3; 15:33; Luke 15:4.
(2.) The translation of the Hebrew Aribah’, “an arid tract” (Isa. 35:1, 6; 40:3; 41:19; 51:3, etc.). The name Arabah is specially applied to the deep valley of the Jordan (the Ghor of the Arabs), which extends from the lake of Tiberias to the Elanitic gulf. While midbar denotes properly a pastoral region, arabah denotes a wilderness. It is also translated “plains;” as “the plains of Jericho” (Josh. 5:10; 2 Kings 25:5), “the plains of Moab” (Num. 22:1; Deut. 34:1, 8), “the plains of the wilderness” (2 Sam. 17:16).
(3.) In the Revised Version of Num. 21:20 the Hebrew word jeshimon is properly rendered “desert,” meaning the waste tracts on both shores of the Dead Sea. This word is also rendered “desert” in Ps. 78:40; 106:14; Isa. 43:19, 20. It denotes a greater extent of uncultivated country than the other words so rendered. It is especially applied to the desert of the peninsula of Arabia (Num. 21:20; 23:28), the most terrible of all the deserts with which the Israelites were acquainted. It is called “the desert” in Ex. 23:31; Deut. 11:24. (See JESHIMON.)
(4.) A dry place; hence a desolation (Ps. 9:6), desolate (Lev. 26:34); the rendering of the Hebrew word horbah’. It is rendered “desert” only in Ps. 102:6, Isa. 48:21, and Ezek. 13:4, where it means the wilderness of Sinai.
(5.) This word is the symbol of the Jewish church when they had forsaken God (Isa. 40:3). Nations destitute of the knowledge of God are called a “wilderness” (32:15, midbar). It is a symbol of temptation, solitude, and persecution (Isa. 27:10, midbar_; 33:9, _arabah).
Desire of all nations (Hag. 2:7), usually interpreted as a title of the Messiah. The Revised Version, however, more correctly renders “the desirable things of all nations;” i.e., the choicest treasures of the Gentiles shall be consecrated to the Lord.
Desolation, Abomination of (Matt. 24:15; Mark 13:14; comp. Luke 21:20), is interpreted of the eagles, the standards of the Roman army, which were an abomination to the Jews. These standards, rising over the site of the temple, were a sign that the holy place had fallen under the idolatrous Romans. The references are to Dan. 9:27. (See ABOMINATION.)
Destroyer (Ex. 12:23), the agent employed in the killing of the first-born; the destroying angel or messenger of God. (Comp. 2 Kings 19:35; 2 Sam. 24:15, 16; Ps. 78:49; Acts 12:23.)
Destruction In Job 26:6, 28:22 (Heb. abaddon) is sheol, the realm of the dead.
Destruction, City of (Isa. 19:18; Heb. Ir-ha-Heres, “city of overthrow,” because of the evidence it would present of the overthrow of heathenism), the ideal title of On or Heliopolis (q.v.).
Deuteronomy In all the Hebrew manuscripts the Pentateuch (q.v.) forms one roll or volume divided into larger and smaller sections called parshioth_ and _sedarim. It is not easy to say when it was divided into five books. This was probably first done by the Greek translators of the book, whom the Vulgate follows. The fifth of these books was called by the Greeks Deuteronomion, i.e., the second law, hence our name Deuteronomy, or a second statement of the laws already promulgated. The Jews designated the book by the two first Hebrew words that occur, _’Elle haddabharim_, i.e., “These are the words.” They divided it into eleven parshioth. In the English Bible it contains thirty-four chapters.
It consists chiefly of three discourses delivered by Moses a short time before his death. They were spoken to all Israel in the plains of Moab, in the eleventh month of the last year of their wanderings.
The first discourse (1-4:40) recapitulates the chief events of the last forty years in the wilderness, with earnest exhortations to obedience to the divine ordinances, and warnings against the danger of forsaking the God of their fathers.
The seond discourse (5-26:19) is in effect the body of the whole book. The first address is introductory to it. It contains practically a recapitulation of the law already given by God at Mount Sinai, together with many admonitions and injunctions as to the course of conduct they were to follow when they were settled in Canaan.
The concluding discourse (ch. 27-30) relates almost wholly to the solemn sanctions of the law, the blessings to the obedient, and the curse that would fall on the rebellious. He solemnly adjures them to adhere faithfully to the covenant God had made with them, and so secure for themselves and their posterity the promised blessings.
These addresses to the people are followed by what may be called three appendices, namely (1), a song which God had commanded Moses to write (32:1-47); (2) the blessings he pronounced on the separate tribes (ch. 33); and (3) the story of his death (32:48-52) and burial (ch. 34), written by some other hand, probably that of Joshua.
These farewell addresses of Moses to the tribes of Israel he had so long led in the wilderness “glow in each line with the emotions of a great leader recounting to his contemporaries the marvellous story of their common experience. The enthusiasm they kindle, even to-day, though obscured by translation, reveals their matchless adaptation to the circumstances under which they were first spoken. Confidence for the future is evoked by remembrance of the past. The same God who had done mighty works for the tribes since the Exodus would cover their head in the day of battle with the nations of Palestine, soon to be invaded. Their great lawgiver stands before us, vigorous in his hoary age, stern in his abhorrence of evil, earnest in his zeal for God, but mellowed in all relations to earth by his nearness to heaven. The commanding wisdom of his enactments, the dignity of his position as the founder of the nation and the first of prophets, enforce his utterances. But he touches our deepest emotions by the human tenderness that breathes in all his words. Standing on the verge of life, he speaks as a father giving his parting counsels to those he loves; willing to depart and be with God he has served so well, but fondly lengthening out his last farewell to the dear ones of earth. No book can compare with Deuteronomy in its mingled sublimity and tenderness.” Geikie, Hours, etc.
The whole style and method of this book, its tone and its peculiarities of conception and expression, show that it must have come from one hand. That the author was none other than Moses is established by the following considerations: (1.) The uniform tradition both of the Jewish and the Christian Church down to recent times. (2.) The book professes to have been written by Moses (1:1; 29:1; 31:1, 9-11, etc.), and was obviously intended to be accepted as his work. (3.) The incontrovertible testimony of our Lord and his apostles (Matt. 19:7, 8; Mark 10:3, 4; John 5:46, 47; Acts 3:22; 7:37; Rom. 10:19) establishes the same conclusion. (4.) The frequent references to it in the later books of the canon (Josh. 8:31; 1 Kings 2:9; 2 Kings 14:6; 2 Chr. 23:18; 25:4; 34:14; Ezra 3:2; 7:6; Neh. 8:1; Dan. 9:11, 13) prove its antiquity; and (5) the archaisms found in it are in harmony with the age in which Moses lived. (6.) Its style and allusions are also strikingly consistent with the circumstances and position of Moses and of the people at that time.
This body of positive evidence cannot be set aside by the conjectures and reasonings of modern critics, who contended that the book was somewhat like a forgery, introduced among the Jews some seven or eight centuries after the Exodus.
Devil (Gr. diabolos), a slanderer, the arch-enemy of man’s spiritual interest (Job 1:6; Rev. 2:10; Zech. 3:1). He is called also “the accuser of the brethen” (Rev. 12:10).
In Lev. 17:7 the word “devil” is the translation of the Hebrew sair, meaning a “goat” or “satyr” (Isa. 13:21; 34:14), alluding to the wood-daemons, the objects of idolatrous worship among the heathen.
In Deut. 32:17 and Ps. 106:37 it is the translation of Hebrew shed, meaning lord, and idol, regarded by the Jews as a “demon,” as the word is rendered in the Revised Version.
In the narratives of the Gospels regarding the “casting out of devils” a different Greek word (daimon) is used. In the time of our Lord there were frequent cases of demoniacal possession (Matt. 12:25-30; Mark 5:1-20; Luke 4:35; 10:18, etc.).
Dew “There is no dew properly so called in Palestine, for there is no moisture in the hot summer air to be chilled into dew-drops by the coldness of the night. From May till October rain is unknown, the sun shining with unclouded brightness day after day. The heat becomes intense, the ground hard, and vegetation would perish but for the moist west winds that come each night from the sea. The bright skies cause the heat of the day to radiate very quickly into space, so that the nights are as cold as the day is the reverse, a peculiarity of climate from which poor Jacob suffered thousands of years ago (Gen. 31:40). To this coldness of the night air the indispensable watering of all plant-life is due. The winds, loaded with moisture, are robbed of it as they pass over the land, the cold air condensing it into drops of water, which fall in a gracious rain of mist on every thirsty blade. In the morning the fog thus created rests like a sea over the plains, and far up the sides of the hills, which raise their heads above it like so many islands. At sunrise, however, the scene speedily changes. By the kindling light the mist is transformed into vast snow-white clouds, which presently break into separate masses and rise up the mountain-sides, to disappear in the blue above, dissipated by the increasing heat. These are the morning clouds and the early dew that go away’ of which Hosea (6:4; 13:3) speaks so touchingly” (Geikie’s The Holy Land, etc., i., p. 72). Dew is a source of great fertility (Gen. 27:28; Deut. 33:13; Zech. 8:12), and its withdrawal is regarded as a curse from God (2 Sam. 1:21; 1 Kings 17:1). It is the symbol of a multitude (2 Sam. 17:12; Ps. 110:3); and from its refreshing influence it is an emblem of brotherly love and harmony (Ps. 133:3), and of rich spiritual blessings (Hos. 14:5).
Diadem The tiara of a king (Ezek. 21:26; Isa. 28:5; 62:3); the turban (Job 29:14). In the New Testament a careful distinction is drawn between the diadem as a badge of royalty (Rev. 12:3; 13:1; 19:12) and the crown as a mark of distinction in private life. It is not known what the ancient Jewish “diadem” was. It was the mark of Oriental sovereigns. (See CROWN.)
Dial For the measurement of time, only once mentioned in the Bible, erected by Ahaz (2 Kings 20:11; Isa. 38:8). The Hebrew word (ma’aloth) is rendered “steps” in Ex. 20:26, 1 Kings 10:19, and “degrees” in 2 Kings 20:9, 10, 11. The ma’aloth was probably stairs on which the shadow of a column or obelisk placed on the top fell. The shadow would cover a greater or smaller number of steps, according as the sun was low or high.
Probably the sun-dial was a Babylonian invention. Daniel at Babylon (Dan. 3:6) is the first to make mention of the “hour.”
Diamond (1.) A precious gem (Heb. yahalom’, in allusion to its hardness), otherwise unknown, the sixth, i.e., the third in the second row, in the breastplate of the high priest, with the name of Naphtali engraven on it (Ex. 28:18; 39:11; R.V. marg., “sardonyx.”)
(2.) A precious stone (Heb. shamir’, a sharp point) mentioned in Jer. 17:1. From its hardness it was used for cutting and perforating other minerals. It is rendered “adamant” (q.v.) in Ezek. 3:9, Zech. 7:12. It is the hardest and most valuable of precious stones.
Diana So called by the Romans; called Artemis by the Greeks, the “great” goddess worshipped among heathen nations under various modifications. Her most noted temple was that at Ephesus. It was built outside the city walls, and was one of the seven wonders of the ancient world. “First and last it was the work of 220 years; built of shining marble; 342 feet long by 164 feet broad; supported by a forest of columns, each 56 feet high; a sacred museum of masterpieces of sculpture and painting. At the centre, hidden by curtains, within a gorgeous shrine, stood the very ancient image of the goddess, on wood or ebony reputed to have fallen from the sky. Behind the shrine was a treasury, where, as in the safest bank in Asia,’ nations and kings stored their most precious things. The temple as St. Paul saw it subsisted till A.D. 262, when it was ruined by the Goths” (Acts 19:23-41)., Moule on Ephesians: Introd.
Diblaim Doubled cakes, the mother of Gomer, who was Hosea’s wife (Hos. 1:3).
Diblathaim Two cakes, a city of Moab, on the east of the Dead Sea (Num. 33:46; Jer. 48:22).
Dibon Pining; wasting. (1.) A city in Moab (Num. 21:30); called also Dibon-gad (33:45), because it was built by Gad and Dimon (Isa. 15:9). It has been identified with the modern Diban, about 3 miles north of the Arnon and 12 miles east of the Dead Sea. (See Moabite Stone.)
(2.) A city of the tribe of Judah, inhabited after the Captivity (Neh. 11:25); called also Dimonah (Josh. 15:22). It is probably the modern ed-Dheib.
Didymus (Gr. twin = Heb. Thomas, q.v.), John 11:16; 20:24; 21:2.
Dimnah Dunghill, a city of Zebulun given to the Merarite Levites (Josh. 21:35). In 1 Chr. 6:77 the name “Rimmon” is substituted.
Dinah Judged; vindicated, daughter of Jacob by Leah, and sister of Simeon and Levi (Gen. 30:21). She was seduced by Shechem, the son of Hamor, the Hivite chief, when Jacob’s camp was in the neighbourhood of Shechem. This led to the terrible revenge of Simeon and Levi in putting the Shechemites to death (Gen. 34). Jacob makes frequent reference to this deed of blood with abhorrence and regret (Gen. 34:30; 49:5-7). She is mentioned among the rest of Jacob’s family that went down into Egypt (Gen. 46:8, 15).
Dine (Gen. 43:16). It was the custom in Egypt to dine at noon. But it is probable that the Egyptians took their principal meal in the evening, as was the general custom in the East (Luke 14:12).
Dinhabah Robbers’ den, an Edomitish city, the capital of king Bela (Gen. 36:32). It is probably the modern Dibdiba, a little north-east of Petra.
Dionysius The Areopagite, one of Paul’s converts at Athens (Acts 17:34).
Diotrephes Jove-nourished, rebuked by John for his pride (3 John 1:9). He was a Judaizer, prating against John and his fellow-labourers “with malicious words” (7).
Disciple A scholar, sometimes applied to the followers of John the Baptist (Matt. 9:14), and of the Pharisees (22:16), but principally to the followers of Christ. A disciple of Christ is one who (1) believes his doctrine, (2) rests on his sacrifice, (3) imbibes his spirit, and (4) imitates his example (Matt. 10:24; Luke 14:26, 27, 33; John 6:69).
Dish For eating from (2 Kings 21:13). Judas dipped his hand with a “sop” or piece of bread in the same dish with our Lord, thereby indicating friendly intimacy (Matt. 26:23). The “lordly dish” in Judg. 5:25 was probably the shallow drinking cup, usually of brass. In Judg. 6:38 the same Hebrew word is rendered “bowl.”
The dishes of the tabernacle were made of pure gold (Ex. 25:29; 37:16).
Dishan Antelope, the youngest son of Seir the Horite, head of one of the tribes of Idumaea (Gen. 36:21, 28, 30).
Dispensation (Gr. oikonomia, “management,” “economy”). (1.) The method or scheme according to which God carries out his purposes towards men is called a dispensation. There are usually reckoned three dispensations, the Patriarchal, the Mosaic or Jewish, and the Christian. (See COVENANT, Administration of.) These were so many stages in God’s unfolding of his purpose of grace toward men. The word is not found with this meaning in Scripture.
(2.) A commission to preach the gospel (1 Cor. 9:17; Eph. 1:10; 3:2; Col. 1:25).
Dispensations of Providence are providential events which affect men either in the way of mercy or of judgement.
Dispersion (Gr. diaspora, “scattered,” James 1:1; 1 Pet. 1:1) of the Jews. At various times, and from the operation of divers causes, the Jews were separated and scattered into foreign countries “to the outmost parts of heaven” (Deut. 30:4).
(1.) Many were dispersed over Assyria, Media, Babylonia, and Persia, descendants of those who had been transported thither by the Exile. The ten tribes, after existing as a separate kingdom for two hundred and fifty-five years, were carried captive (B.C. 721) by Shalmaneser (or Sargon), king of Assyria. They never returned to their own land as a distinct people, although many individuals from among these tribes, there can be no doubt, joined with the bands that returned from Babylon on the proclamation of Cyrus.
(2.) Many Jews migrated to Egypt and took up their abode there. This migration began in the days of Solomon (2 Kings 18:21, 24; Isa. 30:7). Alexander the Great placed a large number of Jews in Alexandria, which he had founded, and conferred on them equal rights with the Egyptians. Ptolemy Philadelphus, it is said, caused the Jewish Scriptures to be translated into Greek (the work began B.C. 284), for the use of the Alexandrian Jews. The Jews in Egypt continued for many ages to exercise a powerful influence on the public interests of that country. From Egypt they spread along the coast of Africa to Cyrene (Acts 2:10) and to Ethiopia (8:27).
(3.) After the time of Seleucus Nicator (B.C. 280), one of the captains of Alexander the Great, large numbers of Jews migrated into Syria, where they enjoyed equal rights with the Macedonians. From Syria they found their way into Asia Minor. Antiochus the Great, king of Syria and Asia, removed 3,000 families of Jews from Mesopotamia and Babylonia, and planted them in Phrygia and Lydia.
(4.) From Asia Minor many Jews moved into Greece and Macedonia, chiefly for purposes of commerce. In the apostles’ time they were found in considerable numbers in all the principal cities.
From the time of Pompey the Great (B.C. 63) numbers of Jews from Palestine and Greece went to Rome, where they had a separate quarter of the city assigned to them. Here they enjoyed considerable freedom.
Thus were the Jews everywhere scattered abroad. This, in the overruling providence of God, ultimately contributed in a great degree toward opening the way for the spread of the gospel into all lands.
Dispersion, from the plain of Shinar. This was occasioned by the confusion of tongues at Babel (Gen. 11:9). They were scattered abroad “every one after his tongue, after their families, in their nations” (Gen. 10:5, 20, 31).
The tenth chapter of Genesis gives us an account of the principal nations of the earth in their migrations from the plain of Shinar, which was their common residence after the Flood. In general, it may be said that the descendants of Japheth were scattered over the north, those of Shem over the central regions, and those of Ham over the extreme south. The following table shows how the different families were dispersed:
| – Japheth | – Gomer | Cimmerians, Armenians | – Magog | Caucasians, Scythians | – Madal | Medes and Persian tribes | – Javan | – Elishah | Greeks | – Tarshish | Etruscans, Romans | – Chittim | Cyprians, Macedonians | – Dodanim | Rhodians | – Tubal | Tibareni, Tartars | – Mechech | Moschi, Muscovites | – Tiras | Thracians | | – Shem | – Elam | Persian tribes | – Asshur | Assyrian | – Arphaxad | – Abraham | – Isaac | – Jacob | Hebrews | – Esau | Edomites | – Ishmael | Mingled with Arab tribes | – Lud | Lydians | – Aram | Syrians | | – Ham | – Cush | Ethiopans | – Mizrain | Egyptians | – Phut | Lybians, Mauritanians | – Canaan | Canaanites, Phoenicians
Distaff (Heb. pelek, a “circle”), the instrument used for twisting threads by a whirl (Prov. 31:19).
Divination Of false prophets (Deut. 18:10, 14; Micah 3:6, 7, 11), of necromancers (1 Sam. 28:8), of the Philistine priests and diviners (1 Sam. 6:2), of Balaam (Josh. 13:22). Three kinds of divination are mentioned in Ezek. 21:21, by arrows, consulting with images (the teraphim), and by examining the entrails of animals sacrificed. The practice of this art seems to have been encouraged in ancient Egypt. Diviners also abounded among the aborigines of Canaan and the Philistines (Isa. 2:6; 1 Sam. 28). At a later period multitudes of magicians poured from Chaldea and Arabia into the land of Israel, and pursued their occupations (Isa. 8:19; 2 Kings 21:6; 2 Chr. 33:6). This superstition widely spread, and in the time of the apostles there were “vagabond Jews, exorcists” (Acts 19:13), and men like Simon Magus (Acts 8:9), Bar-jesus (13:6, 8), and other jugglers and impostors (19:19; 2 Tim. 3:13). Every species and degree of this superstition was strictly forbidden by the law of Moses (Ex. 22:18; Lev. 19:26, 31; 20:27; Deut. 18:10, 11).
But beyond these various forms of superstition, there are instances of divination on record in the Scriptures by which God was pleased to make known his will.
(1.) There was divination by lot, by which, when resorted to in matters of moment, and with solemnity, God intimated his will (Josh. 7:13). The land of Canaan was divided by lot (Num. 26:55, 56); Achan’s guilt was detected (Josh. 7:16-19), Saul was elected king (1 Sam. 10:20, 21), and Matthias chosen to the apostleship, by the solem lot (Acts 1:26). It was thus also that the scape-goat was determined (Lev. 16:8-10).
(2.) There was divination by dreams (Gen. 20:6; Deut. 13:1, 3; Judg. 7:13, 15; Matt. 1:20; 2:12, 13, 19, 22). This is illustrated in the history of Joseph (Gen. 41:25-32) and of Daniel (2:27; 4:19-28).
(3.) By divine appointment there was also divination by the Urim and Thummim (Num. 27:21), and by the ephod.
(4.) God was pleased sometimes to vouch-safe direct vocal communications to men (Deut. 34:10; Ex. 3:4; 4:3; Deut. 4:14, 15; 1 Kings 19:12). He also communed with men from above the mercy-seat (Ex. 25:22), and at the door of the tabernacle (Ex. 29:42, 43).
(5.) Through his prophets God revealed himself, and gave intimations of his will (2 Kings 13:17; Jer. 51:63, 64).
Divorce The dissolution of the marriage tie was regulated by the Mosaic law (Deut. 24:1-4). The Jews, after the Captivity, were reguired to dismiss the foreign women they had married contrary to the law (Ezra 10:11-19). Christ limited the permission of divorce to the single case of adultery. It seems that it was not uncommon for the Jews at that time to dissolve the union on very slight pretences (Matt. 5:31, 32; 19:1-9; Mark 10:2-12; Luke 16:18). These precepts given by Christ regulate the law of divorce in the Christian Church.
Dizahab Region of gold, a place in the desert of Sinai, on the western shore of the Elanitic gulf (Deut. 1:1). It is now called Dehab.
Doctor (Luke 2:46; 5:17; Acts 5:34), a teacher. The Jewish doctors taught and disputed in synagogues, or wherever they could find an audience. Their disciples were allowed to propose to them questions. They assumed the office without any appointment to it. The doctors of the law were principally of the sect of the Pharisees. Schools were established after the destruction of Jerusalem at Babylon and Tiberias, in which academical degrees were conferred on those who passed a certain examination. Those of the school of Tiberias were called by the title “rabbi,” and those of Babylon by that of “master.”
Dodai Loving, one of David’s captains (1 Chr. 27:4). (See DODO .)
Dodanim Leaders, a race descended from Javan (Gen. 10:4). They are known in profane history as the Dardani, originally inhabiting Illyricum. They were a semi-Pelasgic race, and in the ethnographical table (Gen. 10) they are grouped with the Chittim (q.v.). In 1 Chr. 1:7, they are called Rodanim. The LXX. and the Samaritan Version also read Rhodii, whence some have concluded that the Rhodians, the inhabitants of the island of Rhodes, are meant.
Dodo Amatory; loving. (1.) A descendant of Issachar (Judg. 10:1).
(2.) An Ahohite, father of Eleazar, who was one of David’s three heroes (2 Sam. 23:9; 1 Chr. 11:12). He was the same with Dodai mentioned in 1 Chr. 27:4.
(3.) A Bethlehemite, and father of Elhanan, who was one of David’s thirty heroes (2 Sam. 23:24).
Doeg Fearful, an Edomite, the chief overseer of Saul’s flocks (1 Sam. 21:7). At the command of Saul he slew the high priest Ahimelech (q.v.) at Nob, together with all the priests to the number of eighty-five persons. (Comp. Ps. 52, title.)
Dog Frequently mentioned both in the Old and New Testaments. Dogs were used by the Hebrews as a watch for their houses (Isa. 56:10), and for guarding their flocks (Job 30:1). There were also then as now troops of semi-wild dogs that wandered about devouring dead bodies and the offal of the streets (1 Kings 14:11; 16:4; 21:19, 23; 22:38; Ps. 59:6, 14).
As the dog was an unclean animal, the terms “dog,” “dog’s head,” “dead dog,” were used as terms of reproach or of humiliation (1 Sam. 24:14; 2 Sam. 3:8; 9:8; 16:9). Paul calls false apostles “dogs” (Phil. 3:2). Those who are shut out of the kingdom of heaven are also so designated (Rev. 22:15). Persecutors are called “dogs” (Ps. 22:16). Hazael’s words, “Thy servant which is but a dog” (2 Kings 8:13), are spoken in mock humility=impossible that one so contemptible as he should attain to such power.
Doleful creatures (occurring only Isa. 13:21. Heb. ochim, i.e., “shrieks;” hence “howling animals”), a general name for screech owls (howlets), which occupy the desolate palaces of Babylon. Some render the word “hyaenas.”
Door-keeper This word is used in Ps. 84:10 (R.V. marg., “stand at the threshold of,” etc.), but there it signifies properly “sitting at the threshold in the house of God.” The psalmist means that he would rather stand at the door of God’s house and merely look in, than dwell in houses where iniquity prevailed.
Persons were appointed to keep the street door leading into the interior of the house (John 18:16, 17; Acts 12:13). Sometimes females held this post.
Door-posts The Jews were commanded to write the divine name on the posts (mezuzoth’) of their doors (Deut. 6:9). The Jews, misunderstanding this injunction, adopted the custom of writing on a slip of parchment these verses (Deut. 6:4-9, and 11:13-21), which they enclosed in a reed or cylinder and fixed on the right-hand door-post of every room in the house.
Doors Moved on pivots of wood fastened in sockets above and below (Prov. 26:14). They were fastened by a lock (Judg. 3:23, 25; Cant. 5:5) or by a bar (Judg. 16:3; Job 38:10). In the interior of Oriental houses, curtains were frequently used instead of doors.
The entrances of the tabernacle had curtains (Ex. 26:31-33, 36). The “valley of Achor” is called a “door of hope,” because immediately after the execution of Achan the Lord said to Joshua, “Fear not,” and from that time Joshua went forward in a career of uninterrupted conquest. Paul speaks of a “door opened” for the spread of the gospel (1 Cor. 16:9; 2 Cor. 2:12; Col. 4:3). Our Lord says of himself, “I am the door” (John 10:9). John (Rev. 4:1) speaks of a “door opened in heaven.”
Dophkah Knocking, an encampment of the Israelites in the wilderness (Num. 33:12). It was in the desert of Sin, on the eastern shore of the western arm of the Red Sea, somewhere in the Wady Feiran.
Dor Dwelling, the Dora of the Romans, an ancient royal city of the Canaanites (Josh. 11:1, 2; 12:23). It was the most southern settlement of the Phoenicians on the coast of Syria. The original inhabitants seem never to have been expelled, although they were made tributary by David. It was one of Solomon’s commissariat districts (Judg. 1:27; 1 Kings 4:11). It has been identified with Tantura (so named from the supposed resemblance of its tower to a tantur, i.e., “a horn”). This tower fell in 1895, and nothing remains but debris and foundation walls, the remains of an old Crusading fortress. It is about 8 miles north of Caesarea, “a sad and sickly hamlet of wretched huts on a naked sea-beach.”
Dorcas A female antelope, or gazelle, a pious Christian widow at Joppa whom Peter restored to life (Acts 9:36-41). She was a Hellenistic Jewess, called Tabitha by the Jews and Dorcas by the Greeks.
Dothan Two wells, a famous pasture-ground where Joseph found his brethren watching their flocks. Here, at the suggestion of Judah, they sold him to the Ishmaelite merchants (Gen. 37:17). It is mentioned on monuments in B.C. 1600.
It was the residence of Elisha (2 Kings 6:13), and the scene of a remarkable vision of chariots and horses of fire surrounding the mountain on which the city stood. It is identified with the modern Tell-Dothan, on the south side of the plain of Jezreel, about 12 miles north of Samaria, among the hills of Gilboa. The “two wells” are still in existence, one of which bears the name of the “pit of Joseph” (Jubb Yusuf).
Dough (batsek, meaning “swelling,” i.e., in fermentation). The dough the Israelites had prepared for baking was carried away by them out of Egypt in their kneading-troughs (Ex. 12:34, 39). In the process of baking, the dough had to be turned (Hos. 7:8).
Dove In their wild state doves generally build their nests in the clefts of rocks, but when domesticated “dove-cots” are prepared for them (Cant. 2:14; Jer. 48:28; Isa. 60:8). The dove was placed on the standards of the Assyrians and Babylonians in honour, it is supposed, of Semiramis (Jer. 25:38; Vulg., “fierceness of the dove;” comp. Jer. 46:16; 50:16). Doves and turtle-doves were the only birds that could be offered in sacrifice, as they were clean according to the Mosaic law (Ge. 15:9; Lev. 5:7; 12:6; Luke 2:24). The dove was the harbinger of peace to Noah (Gen. 8:8, 10). It is often mentioned as the emblem of purity (Ps. 68:13). It is a symbol of the Holy Spirit (Gen. 1:2; Matt. 3:16; Mark 1:10; Luke 3:22; John 1:32); also of tender and devoted affection (Cant. 1:15; 2:14). David in his distress wished that he had the wings of a dove, that he might fly away and be at rest (Ps. 55:6-8). There is a species of dove found at Damascus “whose feathers, all except the wings, are literally as yellow as gold” (68:13).
Dove’s dung (2 Kings 6:25) has been generally understood literally. There are instances in history of the dung of pigeons being actually used as food during a famine. Compare also the language of Rabshakeh to the Jews (2 Kings 18:27; Isa. 36:12). This name, however, is applied by the Arabs to different vegetable substances, and there is room for the opinion of those who think that some such substance is here referred to, as, e.g., the seeds of a kind of millet, or a very inferior kind of pulse, or the root of the ornithogalum, i.e., bird-milk, the star-of-Bethlehem.
Dowry (mohar; i.e., price paid for a wife, Gen. 34:12; Ex. 22:17; 1 Sam. 18:25), a nuptial present; some gift, as a sum of money, which the bridegroom offers to the father of his bride as a satisfaction before he can receive her. Jacob had no dowry to give for his wife, but he gave his services (Gen. 29:18; 30:20; 34:12).
Dragon (1.) Heb. tannim, plural of tan. The name of some unknown creature inhabiting desert places and ruins (Job 30:29; Ps. 44:19; Isa. 13:22; 34:13; 43:20; Jer. 10:22; Micah 1:8; Mal. 1:3); probably, as translated in the Revised Version, the jackal (q.v.).
(2.) Heb. tannin. Some great sea monster (Jer. 51:34). In Isa. 51:9 it may denote the crocodile. In Gen. 1:21 (Heb. plural tanninim) the Authorized Version renders “whales,” and the Revised Version “sea monsters.” It is rendered “serpent” in Ex. 7:9. It is used figuratively in Ps. 74:13; Ezek. 29:3.
In the New Testament the word “dragon” is found only in Rev. 12:3, 4, 7, 9, 16, 17, etc., and is there used metaphorically of “Satan.” (See WHALE.)
Dragon well (Neh. 2:13), supposed by some to be identical with the Pool of Gihon.
Dram The Authorized Version understood the word adarkonim (1 Chr. 29:7; Ezra 8:27), and the similar word darkomnim (Ezra 2:69; Neh. 7:70), as equivalent to the Greek silver coin the drachma. But the Revised Version rightly regards it as the Greek dareikos, a Persian gold coin (the daric) of the value of about 1 pound, 2s., which was first struck by Darius, the son of Hystaspes, and was current in Western Asia long after the fall of the Persian empire. (See DARIC.)
Draught-house (2 Kings 10:27). Jehu ordered the temple of Baal to be destroyed, and the place to be converted to the vile use of receiving offal or ordure. (Comp. Matt. 15:17.)
Drawer of water (Deut. 29:11; Josh. 9:21, 23), a servile employment to which the Gibeonites were condemned.
Dream God has frequently made use of dreams in communicating his will to men. The most remarkable instances of this are recorded in the history of Jacob (Gen. 28:12; 31:10), Laban (31:24), Joseph (37:9-11), Gideon (Judg. 7), and Solomon (1 Kings 3:5). Other significant dreams are also recorded, such as those of Abimelech (Gen. 20:3-7), Pharaoh’s chief butler and baker (40:5), Pharaoh (41:1-8), the Midianites (Judg. 7:13), Nebuchadnezzar (Dan. 2:1; 4:10, 18), the wise men from the east (Matt. 2:12), and Pilate’s wife (27:19).
To Joseph “the Lord appeared in a dream,” and gave him instructions regarding the infant Jesus (Matt. 1:20; 2:12, 13, 19). In a vision of the night a “man of Macedonia” stood before Paul and said, “Come over into Macedonia and help us” (Acts 16:9; see also 18:9; 27:23).
Dredge (Job 24:6). See CORN.
Dregs (Ps. 75:8; Isa. 51:17, 22), the lees of wine which settle at the bottom of the vessel.
Dress (1.) Materials used. The earliest and simplest an apron of fig-leaves sewed together (Gen. 3:7); then skins of animals (3:21). Elijah’s dress was probably the skin of a sheep (2 Kings 1:8). The Hebrews were early acquainted with the art of weaving hair into cloth (Ex. 26:7; 35:6), which formed the sackcloth of mourners. This was the material of John the Baptist’s robe (Matt. 3:4). Wool was also woven into garments (Lev. 13:47; Deut. 22:11; Ezek. 34:3; Job 31:20; Prov. 27:26). The Israelites probably learned the art of weaving linen when they were in Egypt (1 Chr. 4:21). Fine linen was used in the vestments of the high priest (Ex. 28:5), as well as by the rich (Gen. 41:42; Prov. 31:22; Luke 16:19). The use of mixed material, as wool and flax, was forbidden (Lev. 19:19; Deut. 22:11).
(2.) Colour. The prevailing colour was the natural white of the material used, which was sometimes rendered purer by the fuller’s art (Ps. 104:1, 2; Isa. 63:3; Mark 9:3). The Hebrews were acquainted with the art of dyeing (Gen. 37:3, 23). Various modes of ornamentation were adopted in the process of weaving (Ex. 28:6; 26:1, 31; 35:25), and by needle-work (Judg. 5:30; Ps. 45:13). Dyed robes were imported from foreign countries, particularly from Phoenicia (Zeph. 1:8). Purple and scarlet robes were the marks of the wealthy (Luke 16:19; 2 Sam. 1:24).
(3.) Form. The robes of men and women were not very much different in form from each other.
(a) The “coat” (kethoneth), of wool, cotton, or linen, was worn by both sexes. It was a closely-fitting garment, resembling in use and form our shirt (John 19:23). It was kept close to the body by a girdle (John 21:7). A person wearing this “coat” alone was described as naked (1 Sam. 19:24; Isa. 20:2; 2 Kings 6:30; John 21:7); deprived of it he would be absolutely naked.
(b) A linen cloth or wrapper (sadin) of fine linen, used somewhat as a night-shirt (Mark 14:51). It is mentioned in Judg. 14:12, 13, and rendered there “sheets.”
(c) An upper tunic (meil), longer than the “coat” (1 Sam. 2:19; 24:4; 28:14). In 1 Sam. 28:14 it is the mantle in which Samuel was enveloped; in 1 Sam. 24:4 it is the “robe” under which Saul slept. The disciples were forbidden to wear two “coats” (Matt. 10:10; Luke 9:3).
(d) The usual outer garment consisted of a piece of woollen cloth like a Scotch plaid, either wrapped round the body or thrown over the shoulders like a shawl, with the ends hanging down in front, or it might be thrown over the head so as to conceal the face (2 Sam. 15:30; Esther 6:12). It was confined to the waist by a girdle, and the fold formed by the overlapping of the robe served as a pocket (2 Kings 4:39; Ps. 79:12; Hag. 2:12; Prov. 17:23; 21:14).
Female dress. The “coat” was common to both sexes (Cant. 5:3). But peculiar to females were (1) the “veil” or “wimple,” a kind of shawl (Ruth 3:15; rendered “mantle,” R.V., Isa. 3:22); (2) the “mantle,” also a species of shawl (Isa. 3:22); (3) a “veil,” probably a light summer dress (Gen. 24:65); (4) a “stomacher,” a holiday dress (Isa. 3:24). The outer garment terminated in an ample fringe or border, which concealed the feet (Isa. 47:2; Jer. 13:22).
The dress of the Persians is described in Dan. 3:21.
The reference to the art of sewing are few, inasmuch as the garments generally came forth from the loom ready for being worn, and all that was required in the making of clothes devolved on the women of a family (Prov. 31:22; Acts 9:39).
Extravagance in dress is referred to in Jer. 4:30; Ezek. 16:10; Zeph. 1:8 (R.V., “foreign apparel”); 1 Tim. 2:9; 1 Pet. 3:3. Rending the robes was expressive of grief (Gen. 37:29, 34), fear (1 Kings 21:27), indignation (2 Kings 5:7), or despair (Judg. 11:35; Esther 4:1).
Shaking the garments, or shaking the dust from off them, was a sign of renunciation (Acts 18:6); wrapping them round the head, of awe (1 Kings 19:13) or grief (2 Sam. 15:30; casting them off, of excitement (Acts 22:23); laying hold of them, of supplication (1 Sam. 15:27). In the case of travelling, the outer garments were girded up (1 Kings 18:46). They were thrown aside also when they would impede action (Mark 10:50; John 13:4; Acts 7:58).
Drink The drinks of the Hebrews were water, wine, “strong drink,” and vinegar. Their drinking vessels were the cup, goblet or “basin,” the “cruse” or pitcher, and the saucer.
To drink water by measure (Ezek. 4:11), and to buy water to drink (Lam. 5:4), denote great scarcity. To drink blood means to be satiated with slaughter.
The Jews carefully strained their drinks through a sieve, through fear of violating the law of Lev. 11:20, 23, 41, 42. (See Matt. 23:24. “Strain at” should be “strain out.”)
Drink-offering Consisted of wine (Num. 15:5; Hos. 9:4) poured around the altar (Ex. 30:9). Joined with meat-offerings (Num. 6:15, 17; 2 Kings 16:13; Joel 1:9, 13; 2:14), presented daily (Ex. 29:40), on the Sabbath (Num. 28:9), and on feast-days (28:14). One-fourth of an hin of wine was required for one lamb, one-third for a ram, and one-half for a bullock (Num. 15:5; 28:7, 14). “Drink offerings of blood” (Ps. 16:4) is used in allusion to the heathen practice of mingling the blood of animals sacrificed with wine or water, and pouring out the mixture in the worship of the gods, and the idea conveyed is that the psalmist would not partake of the abominations of the heathen.
Drink, strong (Heb. shekar’), an intoxicating liquor (Judg. 13:4; Luke 1:15; Isa. 5:11; Micah 2:11) distilled from corn, honey, or dates. The effects of the use of strong drink are referred to in Ps. 107:27; Isa. 24:20; 49:26; 51:17-22. Its use prohibited, Prov. 20:1. (See WINE.)
Dromedary (Isa. 60:6), an African or Arabian species of camel having only one hump, while the Bactrian camel has two. It is distinguished from the camel only as a trained saddle-horse is distinguished from a cart-horse. It is remarkable for its speed (Jer. 2:23). Camels are frequently spoken of in partriarchal times (Gen. 12:16; 24:10; 30:43; 31:17, etc.). They were used for carrying burdens (Gen. 37:25; Judg. 6:5), and for riding (Gen. 24:64). The hair of the camel falls off of itself in spring, and is woven into coarse cloths and garments (Matt. 3:4). (See CAMEL.)
Dropsy Mentioned only in Luke 14:2. The man afflicted with it was cured by Christ on the Sabbath.
Dross The impurities of silver separated from the one in the process of melting (Prov. 25:4; 26:23; Ps. 119:119). It is also used to denote the base metal itself, probably before it is smelted, in Isa. 1:22, 25.
Drought From the middle of May to about the middle of August the land of Palestine is dry. It is then the “drought of summer” (Gen. 31:40; Ps. 32:4), and the land suffers (Deut. 28:23: Ps. 102:4), vegetation being preserved only by the dews (Hag. 1:11). (See DEW.)
Drown (Ex. 15:4; Amos 8:8; Heb. 11:29). Drowning was a mode of capital punishment in use among the Syrians, and was known to the Jews in the time of our Lord. To this he alludes in Matt. 18:6.
Drunk The first case of intoxication on record is that of Noah (Gen. 9:21). The sin of drunkenness is frequently and strongly condemned (Rom. 13:13; 1 Cor. 6:9, 10; Eph. 5:18; 1 Thess. 5:7, 8). The sin of drinking to excess seems to have been not uncommon among the Israelites.
The word is used figuratively, when men are spoken of as being drunk with sorrow, and with the wine of God’s wrath (Isa. 63:6; Jer. 51:57; Ezek. 23:33). To “add drunkenness to thirst” (Deut. 29:19, A.V.) is a proverbial expression, rendered in the Revised Version “to destroy the moist with the dry”, i.e., the well-watered equally with the dry land, meaning that the effect of such walking in the imagination of their own hearts would be to destroy one and all.
Drusilla Third and youngest daughter of Herod Agrippa I. (Acts 12:1-4, 20-23). Felix, the Roman procurator of Judea, induced her to leave her husband, Azizus, the king of Emesa, and become his wife. She was present with Felix when Paul reasoned of “righteousness, temperance, and judgment to come” (Acts 24:24). She and her son perished in the eruption of Mount Vesuvius, A.D. 79.
Duke Derived from the Latin dux, meaning “a leader;” Arabic, “a sheik.” This word is used to denote the phylarch or chief of a tribe (Gen. 36:15-43; Ex. 15:15; 1 Chr. 1:51-54).
Dulcimer (Heb. sumphoniah), a musical instrument mentioned in Dan. 3:5, 15, along with other instruments there named, as sounded before the golden image. It was not a Jewish instrument. In the margin of the Revised Version it is styled the “bag-pipe.” Luther translated it “lute,” and Grotius the “crooked trumpet.” It is probable that it was introduced into Babylon by some Greek or Western-Asiatic musician. Some Rabbinical commentators render it by “organ,” the well-known instrument composed of a series of pipes, others by “lyre.” The most probable interpretation is that it was a bag-pipe similar to the zampagna of Southern Europe.
Dumah Silence, (comp. Ps. 94:17), the fourth son of Ishmael; also the tribe descended from him; and hence also the region in Arabia which they inhabited (Gen. 25:14; 1 Chr. 1:30).
There was also a town of this name in Judah (Josh. 15:52), which has been identified with ed-Domeh, about 10 miles southwest of Hebron. The place mentioned in the “burden” of the prophet Isaiah (21:11) is Edom or Idumea.
Dumb From natural infirmity (Ex. 4:11); not knowing what to say (Prov. 31:8); unwillingness to speak (Ps. 39:9; Lev. 10:3). Christ repeatedly restored the dumb (Matt. 9:32, 33; Luke 11:14; Matt. 12:22) to the use of speech.
Dung (1.) Used as manure (Luke 13:8); collected outside the city walls (Neh. 2:13). Of sacrifices, burned outside the camp (Ex. 29:14; Lev. 4:11; 8:17; Num. 19:5). To be “cast out as dung,” a figurative expression (1 Kings 14:10; 2 Kings 9:37; Jer. 8:2; Ps. 18:42), meaning to be rejected as unprofitable.
(2.) Used as fuel, a substitute for firewood, which was with difficulty procured in Syria, Arabia, and Egypt (Ezek. 4:12-15), where cows’ and camels’ dung is used to the present day for this purpose.
Dungeon Different from the ordinary prison in being more severe as a place of punishment. Like the Roman inner prison (Acts 16:24), it consisted of a deep cell or cistern (Jer. 38:6). To be shut up in, a punishment common in Egypt (Gen. 39:20; 40:3; 41:10; 42:19). It is not mentioned, however, in the law of Moses as a mode of punishment. Under the later kings imprisonment was frequently used as a punishment (2 Chron. 16:10; Jer. 20:2; 32:2; 33:1; 37:15), and it was customary after the Exile (Matt. 11:2; Luke 3:20; Acts 5:18, 21; Matt. 18:30).
Dung-gate (Neh. 2:13), a gate of ancient Jerusalem, on the south-west quarter. “The gate outside of which lay the piles of sweepings and offscourings of the streets,” in the valley of Tophet.
Dung-hill To sit on a, was a sign of the deepest dejection (1 Sam. 2:8; Ps. 113:7; Lam. 4:5).
Dura The circle, the plain near Babylon in which Nebuchadnezzar set up a golden image, mentioned in Dan. 3:1. The place still retains its ancient name. On one of its many mounds the pedestal of what must have been a colossal statue has been found. It has been supposed to be that of the golden image.
Dust Storms of sand and dust sometimes overtake Eastern travellers. They are very dreadful, many perishing under them. Jehovah threatens to bring on the land of Israel, as a punishment for forsaking him, a rain of “powder and dust” (Deut. 28:24).
To cast dust on the head was a sign of mourning (Josh. 7:6); and to sit in dust, of extreme affliction (Isa. 47:1). “Dust” is used to denote the grave (Job 7:21). “To shake off the dust from one’s feet” against another is to renounce all future intercourse with him (Matt. 10:14; Acts 13:51). To “lick the dust” is a sign of abject submission (Ps. 72:9); and to throw dust at one is a sign of abhorrence (2 Sam. 16:13; comp. Acts 22:23).
Dwarf A lean or emaciated person (Lev. 21:20).
Dwell Tents were in primitive times the common dwellings of men. Houses were afterwards built, the walls of which were frequently of mud (Job 24:16; Matt. 6:19, 20) or of sun-dried bricks.
God “dwells in light” (1 Tim. 6:16; 1 John 1:7), in heaven (Ps. 123:1), in his church (Ps. 9:11; 1 John 4:12). Christ dwelt on earth in the days of his humiliation (John 1:14). He now dwells in the hearts of his people (Eph. 3:17-19). The Holy Spirit dwells in believers (1 Cor. 3:16; 2 Tim. 1:14). We are exhorted to “let the word of God dwell in us richly” (Col. 3:16; Ps. 119:11).
Dwell deep occurs only in Jer. 49:8, and refers to the custom of seeking refuge from impending danger, in retiring to the recesses of rocks and caverns, or to remote places in the desert.
Dwellings The materials used in buildings were commonly bricks, sometimes also stones (Lev. 14:40, 42), which were held together by cement (Jer. 43:9) or bitumen (Gen. 11:3). The exterior was usually whitewashed (Lev. 14:41; Ezek. 13:10; Matt. 23:27). The beams were of sycamore (Isa. 9:10), or olive-wood, or cedar (1 Kings 7:2; Isa. 9:10).
The form of Eastern dwellings differed in many respects from that of dwellings in Western lands. The larger houses were built in a quadrangle enclosing a court-yard (Luke 5:19; 2 Sam. 17:18; Neh. 8:16) surrounded by galleries, which formed the guest-chamber or reception-room for visitors. The flat roof, surrounded by a low parapet, was used for many domestic and social purposes. It was reached by steps from the court. In connection with it (2 Kings 23:12) was an upper room, used as a private chamber (2 Sam 18:33; Dan. 6:11), also as a bedroom (2 Kings 23:12), a sleeping apartment for guests (2 Kings 4:10), and as a sick-chamber (1 Kings 17:19). The doors, sometimes of stone, swung on morticed pivots, and were generally fastened by wooden bolts. The houses of the more wealthy had a doorkeeper or a female porter (John 18:16; Acts 12:13). The windows generally opened into the courtyard, and were closed by a lattice (Judg. 5:28). The interior rooms were set apart for the female portion of the household.
The furniture of the room (2 Kings 4:10) consisted of a couch furnished with pillows (Amos 6:4; Ezek. 13:20); and besides this, chairs, a table and lanterns or lamp-stands (2 Kings 4:10).
Dye The art of dyeing is one of great antiquity, although no special mention is made of it in the Old Testament. The Hebrews probably learned it from the Egyptians (see Ex. 26:1; 28:5-8), who brought it to great perfection. In New Testament times Thyatira was famed for its dyers (Acts 16:14). (See COLOUR.) __________________________________________________________________
Eagle (Herb. nesher; properly the griffon vulture or great vulture, so called from its tearing its prey with its beak), referred to for its swiftness of flight (Deut. 28:49; 2 Sam. 1:23), its mounting high in the air (Job 39:27), its strength (Ps. 103:5), its setting its nest in high places (Jer. 49:16), and its power of vision (Job 39:27-30).
This “ravenous bird” is a symbol of those nations whom God employs and sends forth to do a work of destruction, sweeping away whatever is decaying and putrescent (Matt. 24:28; Isa. 46:11; Ezek. 39:4; Deut. 28:49; Jer. 4:13; 48:40). It is said that the eagle sheds his feathers in the beginning of spring, and with fresh plumage assumes the appearance of youth. To this, allusion is made in Ps. 103:5 and Isa. 40:31. God’s care over his people is likened to that of the eagle in training its young to fly (Ex. 19:4; Deut. 32:11, 12). An interesting illustration is thus recorded by Sir Humphry Davy:, “I once saw a very interesting sight above the crags of Ben Nevis. Two parent eagles were teaching their offspring, two young birds, the maneuvers of flight. They began by rising from the top of the mountain in the eye of the sun. It was about mid-day, and bright for the climate. They at first made small circles, and the young birds imitated them. They paused on their wings, waiting till they had made their flight, and then took a second and larger gyration, always rising toward the sun, and enlarging their circle of flight so as to make a gradually ascending spiral. The young ones still and slowly followed, apparently flying better as they mounted; and they continued this sublime exercise, always rising till they became mere points in the air, and the young ones were lost, and afterwards their parents, to our aching sight.” (See Isa. 40:31.)
There have been observed in Palestine four distinct species of eagles, (1) the golden eagle (Aquila chrysaetos); (2) the spotted eagle (Aquila naevia); (3) the common species, the imperial eagle (Aquila heliaca); and (4) the Circaetos gallicus, which preys on reptiles. The eagle was unclean by the Levitical law (Lev. 11:13; Deut. 14:12).
Ear Used frequently in a figurative sense (Ps. 34:15). To “uncover the ear” is to show respect to a person (1 Sam. 20:2 marg.). To have the “ear heavy”, or to have “uncircumcised ears” (Isa. 6:10), is to be inattentive and disobedient. To have the ear “bored” through with an awl was a sign of perpetual servitude (Ex. 21:6).
Earing An Old English word (from the Latin aro, I plough), meaning “ploughing.” It is used in the Authorized Version in Gen. 45:6; Ex. 34:21; 1 Sam. 8:12; Deut. 21:4; Isa. 30:24; but the Revised Version has rendered the original in these places by the ordinary word to plough or till.
Earnest The Spirit is the earnest of the believer’s destined inheritance (2 Cor. 1:22; 5:5; Eph. 1:14). The word thus rendered is the same as that rendered “pledge” in Gen. 38:17-20; “indeed, the Hebrew word has simply passed into the Greek and Latin languages, probably through commercial dealings with the Phoenicians, the great trading people of ancient days. Originally it meant no more than a pledge; but in common usage it came to denote that particular kind of pledge which is a part of the full price of an article paid in advance; and as it is joined with the figure of a seal when applied to the Spirit, it seems to be used by Paul in this specific sense.” The Spirit’s gracious presence and working in believers is a foretaste to them of the blessedness of heaven. God is graciously pleased to give not only pledges but foretastes of future blessedness.
Earrings Rings properly for the ear (Gen. 35:4; Num. 31:50; Ezek. 16:12). In Gen. 24:47 the word means a nose-jewel, and is so rendered in the Revised Version. In Isa. 3:20 the Authorized Version has “ear-rings,” and the Revised Version “amulets,” which more correctly represents the original word (lehashim), which means incantations; charms, thus remedies against enchantment, worn either suspended from the neck or in the ears of females. Ear-rings were ornaments used by both sexes (Ex. 32:2).
Earth (1.) In the sense of soil or ground, the translation of the word adamah’. In Gen. 9:20 “husbandman” is literally “man of the ground or earth.” Altars were to be built of earth (Ex. 20:24). Naaman asked for two mules’ burden of earth (2 Kings 5:17), under the superstitious notion that Jehovah, like the gods of the heathen, could be acceptably worshipped only on his own soil.
(2). As the rendering of ‘erets, it means the whole world (Gen. 1:2); the land as opposed to the sea (1:10). Erets also denotes a country (21:32); a plot of ground (23:15); the ground on which a man stands (33:3); the inhabitants of the earth (6:1; 11:1); all the world except Israel (2 Chr. 13:9). In the New Testament “the earth” denotes the land of Judea (Matt. 23:35); also things carnal in contrast with things heavenly (John 3:31; Col. 3:1, 2).
Earthquake Mentioned among the extraordinary phenomena of Palestine (Ps. 18:7; comp. Hab. 3:6; Nah. 1:5; Isa. 5:25).
The first earthquake in Palestine of which we have any record happened in the reign of Ahab (1 Kings 19:11, 12). Another took place in the days of Uzziah, King of Judah (Zech. 14:5). The most memorable earthquake taking place in New Testament times happened at the crucifixion of our Lord (Matt. 27:54). An earthquake at Philippi shook the prison in which Paul and Silas were imprisoned (Act 16:26).
It is used figuratively as a token of the presence of the Lord (Judg. 5:4; 2 Sam. 22:8; Ps. 77:18; 97:4; 104:32).
East (1.) The orient (mizrah); the rising of the sun. Thus “the east country” is the country lying to the east of Syria, the Elymais (Zech. 8:7).
(2). Properly what is in front of one, or a country that is before or in front of another; the rendering of the word kedem. In pointing out the quarters, a Hebrew always looked with his face toward the east. The word kedem is used when the four quarters of the world are described (Gen. 13:14; 28:14); and mizrah when the east only is distinguished from the west (Josh. 11:3; Ps. 50:1; 103:12, etc.). In Gen. 25:6 “eastward” is literally “unto the land of kedem;” i.e., the lands lying east of Palestine, namely, Arabia, Mesopotamia, etc.
East, Children of the The Arabs as a whole, known as the Nabateans or Kedarenes, nomad tribes (Judg. 6:3, 33; 7:12; 8:10).
Easter Originally a Saxon word (Eostre), denoting a goddess of the Saxons, in honour of whom sacrifices were offered about the time of the Passover. Hence the name came to be given to the festival of the Resurrection of Christ, which occured at the time of the Passover. In the early English versions this word was frequently used as the translation of the Greek pascha (the Passover). When the Authorized Version (1611) was formed, the word “passover” was used in all passages in which this word pascha occurred, except in Act 12:4. In the Revised Version the proper word, “passover,” is always used.
East gate (Jer. 19:2), properly the Potter’s gate, the gate which led to the potter’s field, in the valley of Hinnom.
East sea (Joel 2:20; Ezek. 47:18), the Dead Sea, which lay on the east side of the Holy Land. The Mediterranean, which lay on the west, was hence called the “great sea for the west border” (Num. 34:6).
East wind The wind coming from the east (Job 27:21; Isa. 27:8, etc.). Blight caused by this wind, “thin ears” (Gen. 41:6); the withered “gourd” (Jonah 4: 8). It was the cause and also the emblem of evil (Ezek. 17:10; 19:12; Hos. 13:15). In Palestine this wind blows from a burning desert, and hence is destitute of moisture necessary for vegetation.
Eating The ancient Hebrews would not eat with the Egyptians (Gen. 43:32). In the time of our Lord they would not eat with Samaritans (John 4:9), and were astonished that he ate with publicans and sinners (Matt. 9:11). The Hebrews originally sat at table, but afterwards adopted the Persian and Chaldean practice of reclining (Luke 7:36-50). Their principal meal was at noon (Gen. 43:16; 1 Kings 20:16; Ruth 2:14; Luke 14:12). The word “eat” is used metaphorically in Jer. 15:16; Ezek. 3:1; Rev. 10:9. In John 6:53-58, “eating and drinking” means believing in Christ. Women were never present as guests at meals (q.v.).
Ebal Stony. (1.) A mountain 3,076 feet above the level of the sea, and 1,200 feet above the level of the valley, on the north side of which stood the city of Shechem (q.v.). On this mountain six of the tribes (Deut. 27:12, 13) were appointed to take their stand and respond according to a prescribed form to the imprecations uttered in the valley, where the law was read by the Levites (11:29; 29:4, 13). This mountain was also the site of the first great altar erected to Jehovah (Deut. 27:5-8; Josh. 8:30-35). After this the name of Ebal does not again occur in Jewish history. (See GERIZIM.)
(2.) A descendant of Eber (1 Chr. 1:22), called also Obal (Gen. 10:28).
(3.) A descendant of Seir the Horite (Gen. 36:23).
Ebed Slave, the father of Gaal, in whom the men of Shechem “put confidence” in their conspiracy against Abimelech (Judg. 9:26, 26, 30, 31).
Ebed-melech A servant of the king; probably an official title, an Ethiopian, “one of the eunuchs which was in the king’s house;” i.e., in the palace of Zedekiah, king of Judah. He interceded with the king in Jeremiah’s behalf, and was the means of saving him from death by famine (Jer. 38:7-13: comp. 39:15-18).
Eben-ezer Stone of help, the memorial stone set up by Samuel to commemorate the divine assistance to Israel in their great battle against the Philistines, whom they totally routed (1 Sam. 7:7-12) at Aphek, in the neighbourhood of Mizpeh, in Benjamin, near the western entrance of the pass of Beth-horon. On this very battle-field, twenty years before, the Philistines routed the Israelites, “and slew of the army in the field about four thousand men” (4:1, 2; here, and at 5:1, called “Eben-ezer” by anticipation). In this extremity the Israelites fetched the ark out of Shiloh and carried it into their camp. The Philistines a second time immediately attacked them, and smote them with a very great slaughter, “for there fell of Israel thirty thousand footmen. And the ark of God was taken” (1 Sam. 4:10). And now in the same place the Philistines are vanquished, and the memorial stone is erected by Samuel (q.v.). The spot where the stone was erected was somewhere “between Mizpeh and Shen.” Some have identified it with the modern Beit Iksa, a conspicuous and prominent position, apparently answering all the necessary conditions; others with Dier Aban, 3 miles east of Ain Shems.
Eber Beyond. (1.). The third post-duluvian patriach after Shem (Gen. 10:24; 11:14). He is regarded as the founder of the Hebrew race (10:21; Num. 24:24). In Luke 3:35 he is called Heber.
(2.) One of the seven heads of the families of the Gadites (1 Chr. 5:13).
(3.) The oldest of the three sons of Elpaal the Benjamite (8:12).
(4.) One of the heads of the familes of Benjamites in Jerusalem (22).
(5.) The head of the priestly family of Amok in the time of Zerubbabel (Neh. 12:20).
Ebony A black, hard wood, brought by the merchants from India to Tyre (Ezek. 27:15). It is the heart-wood, brought by Diospyros ebenus, which grows in Ceylon and Southern India.
Ebronah Passage, one of the stations of the Israelites in their wanderings (Num. 33:34, 35). It was near Ezion-geber.
Ecbatana (Ezra 6:2 marg.). (See ACHMETHA.)
Ecclesiastes The Greek rendering of the Hebrew Koheleth, which means “Preacher.” The old and traditional view of the authorship of this book attributes it to Solomon. This view can be satisfactorily maintained, though others date it from the Captivity. The writer represents himself implicitly as Solomon (1:12). It has been appropriately styled The Confession of King Solomon. “The writer is a man who has sinned in giving way to selfishness and sensuality, who has paid the penalty of that sin in satiety and weariness of life, but who has through all this been under the discipline of a divine education, and has learned from it the lesson which God meant to teach him.” “The writer concludes by pointing out that the secret of a true life is that a man should consecrate the vigour of his youth to God.” The key-note of the book is sounded in ch. 1:2,
“Vanity of vanities! saith the Preacher, Vanity of vanities! all is vanity!”
i.e., all man’s efforts to find happiness apart from God are without result.
Eclipse Of the sun alluded to in Amos 8:9; Micah 3:6; Zech. 14:6; Joel 2:10. Eclipses were regarded as tokens of God’s anger (Joel 3:15; Job 9:7). The darkness at the crucifixion has been ascribed to an eclipse (Matt. 27:45); but on the other hand it is argued that the great intensity of darkness caused by an eclipse never lasts for more than six minutes, and this darkness lasted for three hours. Moreover, at the time of the Passover the moon was full, and therefore there could not be an eclipse of the sun, which is caused by an interposition of the moon between the sun and the earth.
Ed Witness, a word not found in the original Hebrew, nor in the LXX. and Vulgate, but added by the translators in the Authorized Version, also in the Revised Version, of Josh. 22:34. The words are literally rendered: “And the children of Reuben and the children of Gad named the altar. It is a witness between us that Jehovah is God.” This great altar stood probably on the east side of the Jordan, in the land of Gilead, “over against the land of Canaan.” After the division of the Promised Land, the tribes of Reuben and Gad and the half-tribe of Manasseh, on returning to their own settlements on the east of Jordan (Josh. 22:1-6), erected a great altar, which they affirmed, in answer to the challenge of the other tribes, was not for sacrifice, but only as a witness (Ed) or testimony to future generations that they still retained the same interest in the nation as the other tribes.
Edar Tower of the flock, a tower between Bethlehem and Hebron, near which Jacob first halted after leaving Bethlehem (Gen. 35:21). In Micah 4:8 the word is rendered “tower of the flock” (marg., “Edar”), and is used as a designation of Bethlehem, which figuratively represents the royal line of David as sprung from Bethlehem.
Eden Delight. (1.) The garden in which our first parents dewlt (Gen. 2:8-17). No geographical question has been so much discussed as that bearing on its site. It has been placed in Armenia, in the region west of the Caspian Sea, in Media, near Damascus, in Palestine, in Southern Arabia, and in Babylonia. The site must undoubtedly be sought for somewhere along the course of the great streams the Tigris and the Euphrates of Western Asia, in “the land of Shinar” or Babylonia. The region from about lat. 33 degrees 30′ to lat. 31 degrees, which is a very rich and fertile tract, has been by the most competent authorities agreed on as the probable site of Eden. “It is a region where streams abound, where they divide and re-unite, where alone in the Mesopotamian tract can be found the phenomenon of a single river parting into four arms, each of which is or has been a river of consequence.”
Among almost all nations there are traditions of the primitive innocence of our race in the garden of Eden. This was the “golden age” to which the Greeks looked back. Men then lived a “life free from care, and without labour and sorrow. Old age was unknown; the body never lost its vigour; existence was a perpetual feast without a taint of evil. The earth brought forth spontaneously all things that were good in profuse abundance.”
(2.) One of the markets whence the merchants of Tyre obtained richly embroidered stuffs (Ezek. 27:23); the same, probably, as that mentioned in 2 Kings 19:12, and Isa. 37:12, as the name of a region conquered by the Assyrians.
(3.) Son of Joah, and one of the Levites who assisted in reforming the public worship of the sanctuary in the time of Hezekiah (2 Chr. 29:12).
Eder Flock. (1.) A city in the south of Judah, on the border of Idumea (Josh. 15:21).
(2.) The second of the three sons of Mushi, of the family of Merari, appointed to the Levitical office (1 Chr. 23:23; 24:30).
Edom (1.) The name of Esau (q.v.), Gen. 25:30, “Feed me, I pray thee, with that same red pottage [Heb. haadom, haadom, i.e., the red pottage, the red pottage’] …Therefore was his name called Edom”, i.e., Red.
(2.) Idumea (Isa. 34:5, 6; Ezek. 35:15). “The field of Edom” (Gen. 32:3), “the land of Edom” (Gen. 36:16), was mountainous (Obad. 1:8, 9, 19, 21). It was called the land, or “the mountain of Seir,” the rough hills on the east side of the Arabah. It extended from the head of the Gulf of Akabah, the Elanitic gulf, to the foot of the Dead Sea (1 Kings 9:26), and contained, among other cities, the rock-hewn Sela (q.v.), generally known by the Greek name Petra (2 Kings 14:7). It is a wild and rugged region, traversed by fruitful valleys. Its old capital was Bozrah (Isa. 63:1). The early inhabitants of the land were Horites. They were destroyed by the Edomites (Deut. 2:12), between whom and the kings of Israel and Judah there was frequent war (2 Kings 8:20; 2 Chr. 28:17).
At the time of the Exodus they churlishly refused permission to the Israelites to pass through their land (Num. 20:14-21), and ever afterwards maintained an attitude of hostility toward them. They were conquered by David (2 Sam. 8:14; comp. 1 Kings 9:26), and afterwards by Amaziah (2 Chr. 25:11, 12). But they regained again their independence, and in later years, during the decline of the Jewish kingdom (2 Kings 16:6; R.V. marg., “Edomites”), made war against Israel. They took part with the Chaldeans when Nebuchadnezzar captured Jerusalem, and afterwards they invaded and held possession of the south of Palestine as far as Hebron. At length, however, Edom fell under the growing Chaldean power (Jer. 27:3, 6).
There are many prophecies concerning Edom (Isa. 34:5, 6; Jer. 49:7-18; Ezek. 25:13; 35:1-15; Joel 3:19; Amos 1:11; Obad.; Mal. 1:3, 4) which have been remarkably fulfilled. The present desolate condition of that land is a standing testimony to the inspiration of these prophecies. After an existence as a people for above seventeen hundred years, they have utterly disappeared, and their language even is forgotten for ever. In Petra, “where kings kept their court, and where nobles assembled, there no man dwells; it is given by lot to birds, and beasts, and reptiles.”
The Edomites were Semites, closely related in blood and in language to the Israelites. They dispossessed the Horites of Mount Seir; though it is clear, from Gen. 36, that they afterwards intermarried with the conquered population. Edomite tribes settled also in the south of Judah, like the Kenizzites (Gen. 36:11), to whom Caleb and Othniel belonged (Josh. 15:17). The southern part of Edom was known as Teman.
Edrei Mighty; strength. (1.) One of the chief towns of the kingdom of Bashan (Josh. 12:4, 5). Here Og was defeated by the Israelites, and the strength of the Amorites broken (Num. 21:33-35). It subsequently belonged to Manasseh, for a short time apparently, and afterwards became the abode of banditti and outlaws (Josh. 13:31). It has been identified with the modern Edr’a, which stands on a rocky promontory on the south-west edge of the Lejah (the Argob of the Hebrews, and Trachonitis of the Greeks). The ruins of Edr’a are the most extensive in the Hauran. They are 3 miles in circumference. A number of the ancient houses still remain; the walls, roofs, and doors being all of stone. The wild region of which Edrei was the capital is thus described in its modern aspect: “Elevated about 20 feet above the plain, it is a labyrinth of clefts and crevasses in the rock, formed by volcanic action; and owing to its impenetrable condition, it has become a refuge for outlaws and turbulent characters, who make it a sort of Cave of Adullam…It is, in fact, an impregnable natural fortress, about 20 miles in length and 15 in breadth” (Porter’s Syria, etc.). Beneath this wonderful city there is also a subterranean city, hollowed out probably as a refuge for the population of the upper city in times of danger. (See BASHAN.)
(2.) A town of Naphtali (Josh. 19:37).
Effectual call See CALL.
Effectual prayer Occurs in Authorized Version, James 5:16. The Revised Version renders appropriately: “The supplication of a righteous man availeth much in its working”, i.e., “it moves the hand of Him who moves the world.”
Egg (Heb. beytsah, “whiteness”). Eggs deserted (Isa. 10:14), of a bird (Deut. 22:6), an ostrich (Job 39:14), the cockatrice (Isa. 59:5). In Luke 11:12, an egg is contrasted with a scorpion, which is said to be very like an egg in its appearance, so much so as to be with difficulty at times distinguished from it. In Job 6:6 (“the white of an egg”) the word for egg (hallamuth’) occurs nowhere else. It has been translated “purslain” (R.V. marg.), and the whole phrase “purslain-broth”, i.e., broth made of that herb, proverbial for its insipidity; and hence an insipid discourse. Job applies this expression to the speech of Eliphaz as being insipid and dull. But the common rendering, “the white of an egg”, may be satisfactorily maintained.
Eglah A heifer, one of David’s wives, and mother of Ithream (2 Sam. 3:5; 1 Chr. 3:3). According to a Jewish tradition she was Michal.
Eglaim Two ponds, (Isa. 15:8), probably En-eglaim of Ezek. 47:10.
Eglon The bullock; place of heifers. (1.) Chieftain or king of one of the Moabite tribes (Judg. 3:12-14). Having entered into an alliance with Ammon and Amalek, he overran the trans-Jordanic region, and then crossing the Jordan, seized on Jericho, the “city of palm trees,” which had been by this time rebuilt, but not as a fortress. He made this city his capital, and kept Israel in subjection for eighteen years. The people at length “cried unto the Lord” in their distress, and he “raised them up a deliverer” in Ehud (q.v.), the son of Gera, a Benjamite.
(2.) A city in Judah, near Lachish (Josh. 15:39). It was destroyed by Joshua (10:5, 6). It has been identified with Tell Nejileh, 6 miles south of Tell Hesy or Ajlan, north-west of Lachish. (See LACHISH.)
Egypt The land of the Nile and the pyramids, the oldest kingdom of which we have any record, holds a place of great significance in Scripture.
The Egyptians belonged to the white race, and their original home is still a matter of dispute. Many scholars believe that it was in Southern Arabia, and recent excavations have shown that the valley of the Nile was originally inhabited by a low-class population, perhaps belonging to the Nigritian stock, before the Egyptians of history entered it. The ancient Egyptian language, of which the latest form is Coptic, is distantly connected with the Semitic family of speech.
Egypt consists geographically of two halves, the northern being the Delta, and the southern Upper Egypt, between Cairo and the First Cataract. In the Old Testament, Northern or Lower Egypt is called Mazor, “the fortified land” (Isa. 19:6; 37: 25, where the A.V. mistranslates “defence” and “besieged places”); while Southern or Upper Egypt is Pathros, the Egyptian Pa-to-Res, or “the land of the south” (Isa. 11:11). But the whole country is generally mentioned under the dual name of Mizraim, “the two Mazors.”
The civilization of Egypt goes back to a very remote antiquity. The two kingdoms of the north and south were united by Menes, the founder of the first historical dynasty of kings. The first six dynasties constitute what is known as the Old Empire, which had its capital at Memphis, south of Cairo, called in the Old Testament Moph (Hos. 9:6) and Noph. The native name was Mennofer, “the good place.”
The Pyramids were tombs of the monarchs of the Old Empire, those of Gizeh being erected in the time of the Fourth Dynasty. After the fall of the Old Empire came a period of decline and obscurity. This was followed by the Middle Empire, the most powerful dynasty of which was the Twelfth. The Fayyum was rescued for agriculture by the kings of the Twelfth Dynasty; and two obelisks were erected in front of the temple of the sun-god at On or Heliopolis (near Cairo), one of which is still standing. The capital of the Middle Empire was Thebes, in Upper Egypt.
The Middle Empire was overthrown by the invasion of the Hyksos, or shepherd princes from Asia, who ruled over Egypt, more especially in the north, for several centuries, and of whom there were three dynasties of kings. They had their capital at Zoan or Tanis (now San), in the north-eastern part of the Delta. It was in the time of the Hyksos that Abraham, Jacob, and Joseph entered Egypt. The Hyksos were finally expelled about B.C. 1600, by the hereditary princes of Thebes, who founded the Eighteenth Dynasty, and carried the war into Asia. Canaan and Syria were subdued, as well as Cyprus, and the boundaries of the Egyptian Empire were fixed at the Euphrates. The Soudan, which had been conquered by the kings of the Twelfth Dynasty, was again annexed to Egypt, and the eldest son of the Pharaoh took the title of “Prince of Cush.”
One of the later kings of the dynasty, Amenophis IV., or Khu-n-Aten, endeavoured to supplant the ancient state religion of Egypt by a new faith derived from Asia, which was a sort of pantheistic monotheism, the one supreme god being adored under the image of the solar disk. The attempt led to religious and civil war, and the Pharaoh retreated from Thebes to Central Egypt, where he built a new capital, on the site of the present Tell-el-Amarna. The cuneiform tablets that have been found there represent his foreign correspondence (about B.C. 1400). He surrounded himself with officials and courtiers of Asiatic, and more especially Canaanitish, extraction; but the native party succeeded eventually in overthrowing the government, the capital of Khu-n-Aten was destroyed, and the foreigners were driven out of the country, those that remained being reduced to serfdom.
The national triumph was marked by the rise of the Nineteenth Dynasty, in the founder of which, Rameses I., we must see the “new king, who knew not Joseph.” His grandson, Rameses II., reigned sixty-seven years (B.C. 1348-1281), and was an indefatigable builder. As Pithom, excavated by Dr. Naville in 1883, was one of the cities he built, he must have been the Pharaoh of the Oppression. The Pharaoh of the Exodus may have been one of his immediate successors, whose reigns were short. Under them Egypt lost its empire in Asia, and was itself attacked by barbarians from Libya and the north.
The Nineteenth Dynasty soon afterwards came to an end; Egypt was distracted by civil war; and for a short time a Canaanite, Arisu, ruled over it.
Then came the Twentieth Dynasty, the second Pharaoh of which, Rameses III., restored the power of his country. In one of his campaigns he overran the southern part of Palestine, where the Israelites had not yet settled. They must at the time have been still in the wilderness. But it was during the reign of Rameses III. that Egypt finally lost Gaza and the adjoining cities, which were seized by the Pulista, or Philistines.
After Rameses III., Egypt fell into decay. Solomon married the daughter of one of the last kings of the Twenty-first Dynasty, which was overthrown by Shishak I., the general of the Libyan mercenaries, who founded the Twenty-second Dynasty (1 Kings 11:40; 14:25, 26). A list of the places he captured in Palestine is engraved on the outside of the south wall of the temple of Karnak.
In the time of Hezekiah, Egypt was conquered by Ethiopians from the Soudan, who constituted the Twenty-fifth Dynasty. The third of them was Tirhakah (2 Kings 19:9). In B.C. 674 it was conquered by the Assyrians, who divided it into twenty satrapies, and Tirhakah was driven back to his ancestral dominions. Fourteen years later it successfully revolted under Psammetichus I. of Sais, the founder of the Twenty-sixth Dynasty. Among his successors were Necho (2 Kings 23:29) and Hophra, or Apries (Jer. 37:5, 7, 11). The dynasty came to an end in B.C. 525, when the country was subjugated by Cambyses. Soon afterwards it was organized into a Persian satrapy.
The title of Pharaoh, given to the Egyptian kings, is the Egyptian Per-aa, or “Great House,” which may be compared to that of “Sublime Porte.” It is found in very early Egyptian texts.
The Egyptian religion was a strange mixture of pantheism and animal worship, the gods being adored in the form of animals. While the educated classes resolved their manifold deities into manifestations of one omnipresent and omnipotent divine power, the lower classes regarded the animals as incarnations of the gods.
Under the Old Empire, Ptah, the Creator, the god of Memphis, was at the head of the Pantheon; afterwards Amon, the god of Thebes, took his place. Amon, like most of the other gods, was identified with Ra, the sun-god of Heliopolis.
The Egyptians believed in a resurrection and future life, as well as in a state of rewards and punishments dependent on our conduct in this world. The judge of the dead was Osiris, who had been slain by Set, the representative of evil, and afterwards restored to life. His death was avenged by his son Horus, whom the Egyptians invoked as their “Redeemer.” Osiris and Horus, along with Isis, formed a trinity, who were regarded as representing the sun-god under different forms.
Even in the time of Abraham, Egypt was a flourishing and settled monarchy. Its oldest capital, within the historic period, was Memphis, the ruins of which may still be seen near the Pyramids and the Sphinx. When the Old Empire of Menes came to an end, the seat of empire was shifted to Thebes, some 300 miles farther up the Nile. A short time after that, the Delta was conquered by the Hyksos, or shepherd kings, who fixed their capital at Zoan, the Greek Tanis, now San, on the Tanic arm of the Nile. All this occurred before the time of the new king “which knew not Joseph” (Ex. 1:8). In later times Egypt was conquered by the Persians (B.C. 525), and by the Greeks under Alexander the Great (B.C. 332), after whom the Ptolemies ruled the country for three centuries. Subsequently it was for a time a province of the Roman Empire; and at last, in A.D. 1517, it fell into the hands of the Turks, of whose empire it still forms nominally a part. Abraham and Sarah went to Egypt in the time of the shepherd kings. The exile of Joseph and the migration of Jacob to “the land of Goshen” occurred about 200 years later. On the death of Solomon, Shishak, king of Egypt, invaded Palestine (1 Kings 14:25). He left a list of the cities he conquered.
A number of remarkable clay tablets, discovered at Tell-el-Amarna in Upper Egypt, are the most important historical records ever found in connection with the Bible. They most fully confirm the historical statements of the Book of Joshua, and prove the antiquity of civilization in Syria and Palestine. As the clay in different parts of Palestine differs, it has been found possible by the clay alone to decide where the tablets come from when the name of the writer is lost. The inscriptions are cuneiform, and in the Aramaic language, resembling Assyrian. The writers are Phoenicians, Amorites, and Philistines, but in no instance Hittites, though Hittites are mentioned. The tablets consist of official dispatches and letters, dating from B.C. 1480, addressed to the two Pharaohs, Amenophis III. and IV., the last of this dynasty, from the kings and governors of Phoenicia and Palestine. There occur the names of three kings killed by Joshua, Adoni-zedec, king of Jerusalem, Japhia, king of Lachish (Josh. 10:3), and Jabin, king of Hazor (11:1); also the Hebrews (Abiri) are said to have come from the desert.
The principal prophecies of Scripture regarding Egypt are these, Isa. 19; Jer. 43: 8-13; 44:30; 46; Ezek. 29-32; and it might be easily shown that they have all been remarkably fulfilled. For example, the singular disappearance of Noph (i.e., Memphis) is a fulfilment of Jer. 46:19, Ezek. 30:13.
Ehud Union. (1.) A descendant of Benjamin (1 Chr. 7:10), his great-grandson.
(2.) The son of Gera, of the tribe of Benjamin (Judg. 3:15). After the death of Othniel the people again fell into idolatry, and Eglon, the king of Moab, uniting his bands with those of the Ammonites and the Amalekites, crossed the Jordan and took the city of Jericho, and for eighteen years held that whole district in subjection, exacting from it an annual tribute. At length Ehud, by a stratagem, put Eglon to death with a two-edged dagger a cubit long, and routed the Moabites at the fords of the Jordan, putting 10,000 of them to death. Thenceforward the land, at least Benjamin, enjoyed rest “for fourscore years” (Judg. 3:12-30). (See QUARRIES .) But in the south-west the Philistines reduced the Israelites to great straits (Judg. 5:6). From this oppression Shamgar was raised up to be their deliverer.
Ekron Firm-rooted, the most northerly of the five towns belonging to the lords of the Philistines, about 11 miles north of Gath. It was assigned to Judah (Josh. 13:3), and afterwards to Dan (19:43), but came again into the full possession of the Philistines (1 Sam. 5:10). It was the last place to which the Philistines carried the ark before they sent it back to Israel (1 Sam. 5:10; 6:1-8). There was here a noted sanctuary of Baal-zebub (2 Kings 1: 2, 3, 6, 16). Now the small village Akir. It is mentioned on monuments in B.C. 702, when Sennacherib set free its king, imprisoned by Hezekiah in Jerusalem, according to the Assyrian record.
Elah Terebinth or oak. (1.) Valley of, where the Israelites were encamped when David killed Goliath (1 Sam. 17:2, 19). It was near Shochoh of Judah and Azekah (17:1). It is the modern Wady es-Sunt, i.e., “valley of the acacia.” “The terebinths from which the valley of Elah takes its name still cling to their ancient soil. On the west side of the valley, near Shochoh, there is a very large and ancient tree of this kind known as the ‘terebinth of Wady Sur,’ 55 feet in height, its trunk 17 feet in circumference, and the breadth of its shade no less than 75 feet. It marks the upper end of the Elah valley, and forms a noted object, being one of the largest terebinths in Palestine.” Geikie’s, The Holy Land, etc.
(2.) One of the Edomite chiefs or “dukes” of Mount Seir (Gen. 36:41).
(3.) The second of the three sons of Caleb, the son of Jephunneh (1 Chr. 4:15).
(4.) The son and successor of Baasha, king of Israel (1 Kings 16:8-10). He was killed while drunk by Zimri, one of the captains of his chariots, and was the last king of the line of Baasha. Thus was fullfilled the prophecy of Jehu (6, 7, 11-14).
(5.) The father of Hoshea, the last king of Israel (2 Kings 15:30; 17:1).
Elam Highland, the son of Shem (Gen. 10:22), and the name of the country inhabited by his descendants (14:1, 9; Isa. 11:11; 21:2, etc.) lying to the east of Babylonia, and extending to the shore of the Mediterranean, a distance in a direct line of about 1,000 miles. The name Elam is an Assyrian word meaning “high.”
“The inhabitants of Elam, or the Highlands,’ to the east of Babylon, were called Elamites. They were divided into several branches, speaking different dialects of the same agglutinative language. The race to which they belonged was brachycephalic, or short-headed, like the pre-Semitic Sumerians of Babylonia.
“The earliest Elamite kingdom seems to have been that of Anzan, the exact site of which is uncertain; but in the time of Abraham, Shushan or Susa appears to have already become the capital of the country. Babylonia was frequently invaded by the Elamite kings, who at times asserted their supremacy over it (as in the case of Chedorlaomer, the Kudur-Lagamar, or servant of the goddess Lagamar,’ of the cuneiform texts).
“The later Assyrian monarchs made several campaigns against Elam, and finally Assur-bani-pal (about B.C. 650) succeeded in conquering the country, which was ravaged with fire and sword. On the fall of the Assyrian Empire, Elam passed into the hands of the Persians” (A.H. Sayce).
This country was called by the Greeks Cissia or Susiana.
Elasah God made. (1.) One of the descendants of Judah, of the family of Hezron (1 Chr. 2:39, “Eleasah”).
(2.) A descendant of king Saul (1 Chr. 8:37; 9:43).
(3.) The son of Shaphan, one of the two who were sent by Zedekiah to Nebuchadnezzar, and also took charge of Jeremiah’s letter to the captives in Babylon (Jer. 29:3).
Elath Grove; trees, (Deut. 2:8), also in plural form Eloth (1 Kings 9:26, etc.); called by the Greeks and Romans Elana; a city of Idumea, on the east, i.e., the Elanitic, gulf, or the Gulf of Akabah, of the Red Sea. It is first mentioned in Deut. 2:8. It is also mentioned along with Ezion-geber in 1 Kings 9:26. It was within the limits of Solomon’s dominion, but afterwards revolted. It was, however, recovered and held for a time under king Uzziah (2 Kings 14:22). Now the ruin Aila.
El-Bethel God of Bethel, the name of the place where Jacob had the vision of the ladder, and where he erected an altar (Gen. 31:13; 35:7).
Eldad Whom God has loved, one of the seventy elders whom Moses appointed (Num. 11:26, 27) to administer justice among the people. He, with Medad, prophesied in the camp instead of going with the rest to the tabernacle, as Moses had commanded. This incident was announced to Moses by Joshua, who thought their conduct in this respect irregular. Moses replied, “Enviest thou for my sake? would God that all the Lord’s people were prophets” (Num. 11:24-30; comp. Mark 9:38; Luke 9:49).
Elder A name frequently used in the Old Testament as denoting a person clothed with authority, and entitled to respect and reverence (Gen. 50:7). It also denoted a political office (Num. 22:7). The “elders of Israel” held a rank among the people indicative of authority. Moses opened his commission to them (Ex. 3:16). They attended Moses on all important occasions. Seventy of them attended on him at the giving of the law (Ex. 24:1). Seventy also were selected from the whole number to bear with Moses the burden of the people (Num. 11:16, 17). The “elder” is the keystone of the social and political fabric wherever the patriarchal system exists. At the present day this is the case among the Arabs, where the sheik (i.e., “the old man”) is the highest authority in the tribe. The body of the “elders” of Israel were the representatives of the people from the very first, and were recognized as such by Moses. All down through the history of the Jews we find mention made of the elders as exercising authority among the people. They appear as governors (Deut. 31:28), as local magistrates (16:18), administering justice (19:12). They were men of extensive influence (1 Sam. 30:26-31). In New Testament times they also appear taking an active part in public affairs (Matt. 16:21; 21:23; 26:59).
The Jewish eldership was transferred from the old dispensation to the new. “The creation of the office of elder is nowhere recorded in the New Testament, as in the case of deacons and apostles, because the latter offices were created to meet new and special emergencies, while the former was transmitted from the earlies times. In other words, the office of elder was the only permanent essential office of the church under either dispensation.”
The “elders” of the New Testament church were the “pastors” (Eph. 4:11), “bishops or overseers” (Acts 20:28), “leaders” and “rulers” (Heb. 13:7; 1 Thess. 5:12) of the flock. Everywhere in the New Testament bishop and presbyter are titles given to one and the same officer of the Christian church. He who is called presbyter or elder on account of his age or gravity is also called bishop or overseer with reference to the duty that lay upon him (Titus 1:5-7; Acts 20:17-28; Phil. 1:1).
Elealeh God has ascended, a place in the pastoral country east of Jordan, in the tribe of Reuben (Num. 32:3, 37). It is not again mentioned till the time of Isaiah (15:4; 16:9) and Jeremiah (48:34). It is now an extensive ruin called el-A’al, about one mile north-east of Heshbon.
Eleazar God has helped. (1.) The third son of Aaron (Ex. 6:23). His wife, a daughter of Putiel, bore him Phinehas (Ex. 6:25). After the death of Nadab and Abihu (Lev. 10:12; Num. 3:4) he was appointed to the charge of the sanctuary (Num. 3:32). On Mount Hor he was clothed with the sacred vestments, which Moses took from off his brother Aaron and put upon him as successor to his father in the high priest’s office, which he held for more than twenty years (Num. 20:25-29). He took part with Moses in numbering the people (26:3, 4), and assisted at the inauguration of Joshua. He assisted in the distribution of the land after the conquest (Josh. 14:1). The high-priesthood remained in his family till the time of Eli, into whose family it passed, till it was restored to the family of Eleazar in the person of Zadok (1 Sam. 2:35; comp. 1 Kings 2:27). “And Eleazar the son of Aaron died; and they buried him in a hill that pertained to Phinehas his son” (Josh. 24:33). The word here rendered “hill” is Gibeah, the name of several towns in Palestine which were generally on or near a hill. The words may be more suitably rendered, “They buried him in Gibeah of Phinehas”, i.e., in the city of Phinehas, which has been identified, in accordance with Jewish and Samaritan traditions, with Kefr Ghuweirah=Awertah, about 7 miles north of Shiloh, and a few miles south-east of Nablus. “His tomb is still shown there, overshadowed by venerable terebinths.” Others, however, have identified it with the village of Gaba or Gebena of Eusebius, the modern Khurbet Jibia, 5 miles north of Guphna towards Nablus.
(2.) An inhabitant of Kirjath-jearim who was “sanctified” to take charge of the ark, although not allowed to touch it, while it remained in the house of his father Abinadab (1 Sam. 7:1, 2; comp. Num. 3:31; 4:15).
(3.) The son of Dodo the Ahohite, of the tribe of Benjamin, one of the three most eminent of David’s thirty-seven heroes (1 Chr. 11:12) who broke through the Philistine host and brought him water from the well of Bethlehem (2 Sam. 23:9, 16).
(4.) A son of Phinehas associated with the priests in taking charge of the sacred vessels brought back to Jerusalem after the Exile (Ezra 8:33).
(5.) A Levite of the family of Merari (1 Chr. 23:21, 22).
Election of Grace The Scripture speaks (1) of the election of individuals to office or to honour and privilege, e.g., Abraham, Jacob, Saul, David, Solomon, were all chosen by God for the positions they held; so also were the apostles. (2) There is also an election of nations to special privileges, e.g., the Hebrews (Deut. 7:6; Rom. 9:4). (3) But in addition there is an election of individuals to eternal life (2 Thess. 2:13; Eph. 1:4; 1 Pet. 1:2; John 13:18).
The ground of this election to salvation is the good pleasure of God (Eph. 1:5, 11; Matt. 11:25, 26; John 15:16, 19). God claims the right so to do (Rom. 9:16, 21).
It is not conditioned on faith or repentance, but is of soverign grace (Rom. 11:4-6; Eph. 1:3-6). All that pertain to salvation, the means (Eph. 2:8; 2 Thess. 2:13) as well as the end, are of God (Acts 5:31; 2 Tim. 2:25; 1 Cor. 1:30; Eph. 2:5, 10). Faith and repentance and all other graces are the exercises of a regenerated soul; and regeneration is God’s work, a “new creature.”
Men are elected “to salvation,” “to the adoption of sons,” “to be holy and without blame before him in love” (2 Thess. 2:13; Gal. 4:4, 5; Eph. 1:4). The ultimate end of election is the praise of God’s grace (Eph. 1:6, 12). (See PREDESTINATION.)
Elect lady To whom the Second Epistle of John is addressed (2 John 1:1). Some think that the word rendered “lady” is a proper name, and thus that the expression should be “elect Kyria.”
El-elohe-Isreal Mighty one; God of Israel, the name which Jacob gave to the alter which he erected on the piece of land where he pitched his tent before Shechem, and which he afterwards purchased from the sons of Hamor (Gen. 33:20).
Elements In its primary sense, as denoting the first principles or constituents of things, it is used in 2 Pet. 3:10: “The elements shall be dissolved.” In a secondary sense it denotes the first principles of any art or science. In this sense it is used in Gal. 4:3, 9; Col. 2:8, 20, where the expressions, “elements of the world,” “week and beggarly elements,” denote that state of religious knowledge existing among the Jews before the coming of Christ, the rudiments of religious teaching. They are “of the world,” because they are made up of types which appeal to the senses. They are “weak,” because insufficient; and “beggarly,” or “poor,” because they are dry and barren, not being accompanied by an outpouring of spiritual gifts and graces, as the gospel is.
Elephant Not found in Scripture except indirectly in the original Greek word (elephantinos) translated “of ivory” in Rev. 18:12, and in the Hebrew word (shenhabim, meaning “elephant’s tooth”) rendered “ivory” in 1 Kings 10:22 and 2 Chr. 9:21.
Elhanan Whom God has graciously bestowed. (1.) A warrior of the time of David famed for his exploits. In the Authorized Version (2 Sam. 21:19) it is recorded that “Elhanan the son of Jaare-oregim, a Bethlehemite, slew the brother of Goliath.” The Revised Version here rightly omits the words “the brother of.” They were introduced in the Authorized Version to bring this passage into agreement with 1 Chr. 20:5, where it is said that he “slew Lahmi the brother of Goliath.” Goliath the Gittite was killed by David (1 Sam. 17). The exploit of Elhanan took place late in David’s reign.
(2.) The son of Dodo, and one of David’s warriors (2 Sam. 23:24).
Eli Ascent, the high priest when the ark was at Shiloh (1 Sam. 1:3, 9). He was the first of the line of Ithamar, Aaron’s fourth son (1 Chr. 24:3; comp. 2 Sam. 8:17), who held that office. The office remained in his family till the time of Abiathar (1 Kings 2:26, 27), whom Solomon deposed, and appointed Zadok, of the family of Eleazar, in his stead (35). He acted also as a civil judge in Israel after the death of Samson (1 Sam. 4:18), and judged Israel for forty years.
His sons Hophni and Phinehas grossly misconducted themselves, to the great disgust of the people (1 Sam. 2:27-36). They were licentious reprobates. He failed to reprove them so sternly as he ought to have done, and so brought upon his house the judgment of God (2:22-33; 3:18). The Israelites proclaimed war against the Philistines, whose army was encamped at Aphek. The battle, fought a short way beyond Mizpeh, ended in the total defeat of Israel. Four thousand of them fell in “battle array”. They now sought safety in having the “ark of the covenant of the Lord” among them. They fetched it from Shiloh, and Hophni and Phinehas accompanied it. This was the first time since the settlement of Israel in Canaan that the ark had been removed from the sanctuary. The Philistines put themselves again in array against Israel, and in the battle which ensued “Israel was smitten, and there was a very great slaughter.” The tidings of this great disaster were speedily conveyed to Shiloh, about 20 miles distant, by a messenger, a Benjamite from the army. There Eli sat outside the gate of the sanctuary by the wayside, anxiously waiting for tidings from the battle-field. The full extent of the national calamity was speedily made known to him: “Israel is fled before the Philistines, there has also been a great slaughter among the people, thy two sons Hophni and Phinehas are dead, and the ark of God is taken” (1 Sam. 4:12-18). When the old man, whose eyes were “stiffened” (i.e., fixed, as of a blind eye unaffected by the light) with age, heard this sad story of woe, he fell backward from off his seat and died, being ninety and eight years old. (See ITHAMAR.)
Eli, Heb. eli, “my God”, (Matt. 27:46), an exclamation used by Christ on the cross. Mark (15:34), as usual, gives the original Aramaic form of the word, Eloi.
Eliab To whom God is father. (1.) A Reubenite, son of Pallu (Num. 16:1, 12; 26:8, 9; Deut. 11:6).
(2.) A son of Helon, and chief of the tribe of Zebulun at the time of the census in the wilderness (Num. 1:9; 2:7).
(3.) The son of Jesse, and brother of David (1 Sam. 16:6). It was he who spoke contemptuously to David when he proposed to fight Goliath (1 Sam. 17:28).
(4.) One of the Gadite heroes who joined David in his stronghold in the wilderness (1 Chr. 12:9).
Eliada Whom God cares for. (1.) One of David’s sons born after his establishment in Jerusalem (2 Sam. 5:16).
(2.) A mighty man of war, a Benjamite (2 Chr. 17:17).
(3.) An Aramite of Zobah, captain of a marauding band that troubled Solomon (1 Kings 11:23).
Eliakim Whom God will raise up. (1.) The son of Melea (Luke 3:30), and probably grandson of Nathan.
(2.) The son of Abiud, of the posterity of Zerubbabel (Matt. 1:13).
(3.) The son of Hilkiah, who was sent to receive the message of the invading Assyrians and report it to Isaiah (2 Kings 18:18; 19:2; Isa. 36:3; 37:2). In his office as governor of the palace of Hezekiah he succeeded Shebna (Isa. 22:15-25). He was a good man (Isa. 22:20; 2 Kings 18:37), and had a splendid and honourable career.
(4.) The original name of Jehoiakim, king of Judah (2 Kings 23:34). He was the son of Josiah.
Eliam God’s people. (1.) The father of Bathsheba, the wife of Uriah (2 Sam. 11:3). In 1 Chr. 3:5 his name is Ammiel.
(2.) This name also occurs as that of a Gilonite, the son of Ahithophel, and one of David’s thirty warriors (2 Sam. 23:34). perhaps these two were the same person.
Elias The Greek form of Elijah (Matt. 11:14; 16:14, etc.), which the Revised Version has uniformly adopted in the New Testament. (See ELIJAH.)
Eliashib Whom God will restore. (1.) A priest, head of one of the courses of the priests of the time of David (1 Chr. 24:12).
(2.) A high priest in the time of Ezra and Nehemiah (Neh. 12:22, 23). He rebuilt the eastern city wall (3:1), his own mansion being in that quarter, on the ridge Ophel (3:20, 21). His indulgence of Tobiah the Ammonite provoked the indignation of Nehemiah (13:4, 7).
Eliathah To whom God will come, one of the foureen sons of the Levite Heman, and musician of the temple in the time of David (1 Chr. 25:4).
Elidad Whom God has loved, son of Chislon, and chief of the tribe of Benjamin; one of those who were appointed to divide the Promised Land among the tribes (Num. 34:21).
Eliel To whom God is might. (1.) A chief of Manasseh, on the east of Jordan (1 Chr. 5:24).
(2.) A Gadite who joined David in the hold at Ziklag (1 Chr. 12:11).
(3.) One of the overseers of the offerings in the reign of Hezekiah (2 Chr. 31:13).
Eliezer God his help. (1.) “Of Damascus,” the “steward” (R.V., “possessor”) of Abraham’s house (Gen. 15:2, 3). It was probably he who headed the embassy sent by Abraham to the old home of his family in Padan-aram to seek a wife for his son Isaac. The account of this embassy is given at length in Gen. 24.
(2.) The son of Becher, and grandson of Benjamin (1 Chr. 7:8).
(3.) One of the two sons of Moses, born during his sojourn in Midian (Ex. 18:4; 1 Chr. 23:15, 17). He remained with his mother and brother Gershom with Jethro when Moses returned to Egypt. (Ex. 18:4). They were restored to Moses when Jethro heard of his departure out of Egypt.
(4.) One of the priests who blew the trumpet before the ark when it was brought to Jerusalem (1 Chr. 15:24).
(5.) Son of Zichri, and chief of the Reubenites under David (1 Chr. 27:16).
(6.) A prophet in the time of Jehoshaphat (2 Chr. 20:37). Others of this name are mentioned Luke 3:29; Ezra 8:16; 10:18, 23, 31.
Elihu Whose God is he. (1.) “The son of Barachel, a Buzite” (Job 32:2), one of Job’s friends. When the debate between Job and his friends is brought to a close, Elihu for the first time makes his appearance, and delivers his opinion on the points at issue (Job 32-37).
(2.) The son of Tohu, and grandfather of Elkanah (1 Sam. 1:1). He is called also Eliel (1 Chr. 6:34) and Eliab (6:27).
(3.) One of the captains of thousands of Manasseh who joined David at Ziklag (1 Chr. 12:20).
(4.) One of the family of Obed-edom, who were appointed porters of the temple under David (1 Chr. 26:7).
Elijah Whose God is Jehovah. (1.) “The Tishbite,” the “Elias” of the New Testament, is suddenly introduced to our notice in 1 Kings 17:1 as delivering a message from the Lord to Ahab. There is mention made of a town called Thisbe, south of Kadesh, but it is impossible to say whether this was the place referred to in the name given to the prophet.
Having delivered his message to Ahab, he retired at the command of God to a hiding-place by the brook Cherith, beyond Jordan, where he was fed by ravens. When the brook dried up God sent him to the widow of Zarephath, a city of Zidon, from whose scanty store he was supported for the space of two years. During this period the widow’s son died, and was restored to life by Elijah (1 Kings 17: 2-24).
During all these two years a famine prevailed in the land. At the close of this period of retirement and of preparation for his work (comp. Gal. 1:17, 18) Elijah met Obadiah, one of Ahab’s officers, whom he had sent out to seek for pasturage for the cattle, and bade him go and tell his master that Elijah was there. The king came and met Elijah, and reproached him as the troubler of Israel. It was then proposed that sacrifices should be publicly offered, for the purpose of determining whether Baal or Jehovah were the true God. This was done on Carmel, with the result that the people fell on their faces, crying, “The Lord, he is the God.” Thus was accomplished the great work of Elijah’s ministry. The prophets of Baal were then put to death by the order of Elijah. Not one of them escaped. Then immediately followed rain, according to the word of Elijah, and in answer to his prayer (James 5:18).
Jezebel, enraged at the fate that had befallen her priests of Baal, threatened to put Elijah to death (1 Kings 19:1-13). He therefore fled in alarm to Beersheba, and thence went alone a day’s journey into the wilderness, and sat down in despondency under a juniper tree. As he slept an angel touched him, and said unto him, “Arise and eat; because the journey is too great for thee.” He arose and found a cake and a cruse of water. Having partaken of the provision thus miraculously supplied, he went forward on his solitary way for forty days and forty nights to Horeb, the mount of God, where he took up his abode in a cave. Here the Lord appeared unto him and said, “What dost thou here, Elijah?” In answer to his despondent words God manifests to him his glory, and then directs him to return to Damascus and anoint Hazael king over Syria, and Jehu king over Israel, and Elisha to be prophet in his room (1 Kings 19:13-21; comp. 2 Kings 8:7-15; 9:1-10).
Some six years after this he warned Ahab and Jezebel of the violent deaths they would die (1 Kings 21:19-24; 22:38). He also, four years afterwards, warned Ahaziah (q.v.), who had succeeded his father Ahab, of his approaching death (2 Kings 1:1-16). (See NABOTH.) During these intervals he probably withdrew to some quiet retirement, no one knew where. His interview with Ahaziah’s messengers on the way to Ekron, and the account of the destruction of his captains with their fifties, suggest the idea that he may have been in retirement at this time on Mount Carmel.
The time now drew near when he was to be taken up into heaven (2 Kings 2:1-12). He had a presentiment of what was awaiting him. He went down to Gilgal, where was a school of the prophets, and where his successor Elisha, whom he had anointed some years before, resided. Elisha was solemnized by the thought of his master’s leaving him, and refused to be parted from him. “They two went on,” and came to Bethel and Jericho, and crossed the Jordan, the waters of which were “divided hither and thither” when smitten with Elijah’s mantle. Arrived at the borders of Gilead, which Elijah had left many years before, it “came to pass as they still went on and talked” they were suddenly separated by a chariot and horses of fire; and “Elijah went up by a whirlwind into heaven, “Elisha receiving his mantle, which fell from him as he ascended.
No one of the old prophets is so frequently referred to in the New Testament. The priests and Levites said to the Baptist (John 1:25), “Why baptizest thou, if thou be not that Christ, nor Elias?” Paul (Rom. 11:2) refers to an incident in his history to illustrate his argument that God had not cast away his people. James (5:17) finds in him an illustration of the power of prayer. (See also Luke 4:25; 9:54.) He was a type of John the Baptist in the sternness and power of his reproofs (Luke 9:8). He was the Elijah that “must first come” (Matt. 11:11, 14), the forerunner of our Lord announced by Malachi. Even outwardly the Baptist corresponded so closely to the earlier prophet that he might be styled a second Elijah. In him we see “the same connection with a wild and wilderness country; the same long retirement in the desert; the same sudden, startling entrance on his work (1 Kings 17:1; Luke 3:2); even the same dress, a hairy garment, and a leathern girdle about the loins (2 Kings 1:8; Matt. 3:4).”
How deep the impression was which Elijah made “on the mind of the nation may be judged from the fixed belief, which rested on the words of Malachi (4:5, 6), which many centuries after prevailed that he would again appear for the relief and restoration of the country. Each remarkable person as he arrives on the scene, be his habits and characteristics what they may, the stern John equally with his gentle Successor, is proclaimed to be Elijah (Matt. 11:13, 14; 16:14; 17:10; Mark 9:11; 15:35; Luke 9:7, 8; John 1:21). His appearance in glory on the mount of transfiguration does not seem to have startled the disciples. They were sore afraid,’ but not apparently surprised.”
(2.) The Elijah spoken of in 2 Chr. 21:12-15 is by some supposed to be a different person from the foregoing. He lived in the time of Jehoram, to whom he sent a letter of warning (comp. 1 Chr. 28:19; Jer. 36), and acted as a prophet in Judah; while the Tishbite was a prophet of the northern kingdom. But there does not seem any necessity for concluding that the writer of this letter was some other Elijah than the Tishbite. It may be supposed either that Elijah anticipated the character of Jehoram, and so wrote the warning message, which was preserved in the schools of the prophets till Jehoram ascended the throne after the Tishbite’s translation, or that the translation did not actually take place till after the accession of Jehoram to the throne (2 Chr. 21:12; 2 Kings 8:16). The events of 2 Kings 2 may not be recorded in chronological order, and thus there may be room for the opinion that Elijah was still alive in the beginning of Jehoram’s reign.
Elika God is his rejector, one of David’s thirty-seven distinguished heros (2 Sam. 23:25).
Elim Trees, (Ex. 15:27; Num. 33:9), the name of the second station where the Israelites encamped after crossing the Red Sea. It had “twelve wells of water and threescore and ten palm trees.” It has been identified with the Wady Ghurundel, the most noted of the four wadies which descend from the range of et-Tih towards the sea. Here they probably remained some considerable time. The form of expression in Ex. 16:1 seems to imply that the people proceeded in detachments or companies from Elim, and only for the first time were assembled as a complete host when they reached the wilderness of Sin (q.v.).
Elimelech God his king, a man of the tribe of Judah, of the family of the Hezronites, and kinsman of Boaz, who dwelt in Bethlehem in the days of the judges. In consequence of a great dearth he, with his wife Naomi and his two sons, went to dwell in the land of Moab. There he and his sons died (Ruth 1:2, 3; 2:1, 3; 4:3, 9). Naomi afterwards returned to Palestine with her daughter Ruth.
Elioenai Toward Jehovah are my eyes, the name of several men mentioned in the Old Testament (1 Chr. 7:8; 4:36; Ezra 10:22, 27). Among these was the eldest son of Neariah, son of Shemaiah, of the descendants of Zerubbabel. His family are the latest mentioned in the Old Testament (1 Chr. 3:23, 24).
Eliphalet God his deliverance, one of David’s sons (2 Sam. 5:16); called also Eliphelet (1 Chr. 3:8).
Eliphaz God his strength. (1.) One of Job’s “three friends” who visited him in his affliction (4:1). He was a “Temanite”, i.e., a native of Teman, in Idumea. He first enters into debate with Job. His language is uniformly more delicate and gentle than that of the other two, although he imputes to Job special sins as the cause of his present sufferings. He states with remarkable force of language the infinite purity and majesty of God (4:12-21; 15:12-16).
(2.) The son of Esau by his wife Adah, and father of several Edomitish tribes (Gen. 36:4, 10, 11, 16).
Elipheleh God will distinguish him, one of the porters appointed to play “on the Sheminith” on the occasion of the bringing up of the ark to the city of David (1 Chr. 15:18, 21).
Eliphelet God his deliverance. (1.) One of David’s distinguished warriors (2 Sam. 23:34); called also Eliphal in 1 Chr. 11:35.
(2.) One of the sons of David born at Jerusalem (1 Chr. 3:6; 14:5); called Elpalet in 1 Chr. 14:5. Also another of David’s sons (1 Chr. 3:8); called Eliphalet in 2 Sam. 5:16; 1 Chr. 14:7.
(3.) A descendant of king Saul through Jonathan (1 Chr. 8:39).
Elisabeth God her oath, the mother of John the Baptist (Luke 1:5). She was a descendant of Aaron. She and her husband Zacharias (q.v.) “were both righteous before God” (Luke 1:5, 13). Mary’s visit to Elisabeth is described in 1:39-63.
Elisha God his salvation, the son of Shaphat of Abel-meholah, who became the attendant and disciple of Elijah (1 Kings 19:16-19). His name first occurs in the command given to Elijah to anoint him as his successor (1 Kings 19:16). This was the only one of the three commands then given to Elijah which he accomplished. On his way from Sinai to Damascus he found Elisha at his native place engaged in the labours of the field, ploughing with twelve yoke of oxen. He went over to him, threw over his shoulders his rough mantle, and at once adopted him as a son, and invested him with the prophetical office (comp. Luke 9:61, 62). Elisha accepted the call thus given (about four years before the death of Ahab), and for some seven or eight years became the close attendant on Elijah till he was parted from him and taken up into heaven. During all these years we hear nothing of Elisha except in connection with the closing scenes of Elijah’s life. After Elijah, Elisha was accepted as the leader of the sons of the prophets, and became noted in Israel. He possessed, according to his own request, “a double portion” of Elijah’s spirit (2 Kings 2:9); and for the long period of about sixty years (B.C. 892-832) held the office of “prophet in Israel” (2 Kings 5:8).
After Elijah’s departure, Elisha returned to Jericho, and there healed the spring of water by casting salt into it (2 Kings 2:21). We next find him at Bethel (2:23), where, with the sternness of his master, he cursed the youths who came out and scoffed at him as a prophet of God: “Go up, thou bald head.” The judgment at once took effect, and God terribly visited the dishonour done to his prophet as dishonour done to himself. We next read of his predicting a fall of rain when the army of Jehoram was faint from thirst (2 Kings 3:9-20); of the multiplying of the poor widow’s cruse of oil (4:1-7); the miracle of restoring to life the son of the woman of Shunem (4:18-37); the multiplication of the twenty loaves of new barley into a sufficient supply for an hundred men (4:42-44); of the cure of Naaman the Syrian of his leprosy (5:1-27); of the punishment of Gehazi for his falsehood and his covetousness; of the recovery of the axe lost in the waters of the Jordan (6:1-7); of the miracle at Dothan, half-way on the road between Samaria and Jezreel; of the siege of Samaria by the king of Syria, and of the terrible sufferings of the people in connection with it, and Elisha’s prophecy as to the relief that would come (2 Kings 6:24-7:2).
We then find Elisha at Damascus, to carry out the command given to his master to anoint Hazael king over Syria (2 Kings 8:7-15); thereafter he directs one of the sons of the prophets to anoint Jehu, the son of Jehoshaphat, king of Israel, instead of Ahab. Thus the three commands given to Elijah (9:1-10) were at length carried out.
We do not again read of him till we find him on his death-bed in his own house (2 Kings 13:14-19). Joash, the grandson of Jehu, comes to mourn over his approaching departure, and utters the same words as those of Elisha when Elijah was taken away: “My father, my father! the chariot of Israel, and the horsemen thereof.”
Afterwards when a dead body is laid in Elisha’s grave a year after his burial, no sooner does it touch the hallowed remains than the man “revived, and stood up on his feet” (2 Kings 13:20-21).
Elishah The oldest of the four sons of Javan (Gen. 10:4), whose descendants peopled Greece. It has been supposed that Elishah’s descendants peopled the Peloponnesus, which was known by the name of Elis. This may be meant by “the isles of Elishah” (Ezek. 27:7).
Elishama Whom God hears. (1.) A prince of Benjamin, grandfather of Joshua (Num. 1:10; 1 Chr. 7:26). (2.) One of David’s sons (2 Sam. 5:16). (3.) Another of David’s sons (1 Chr. 3:6). (4.) A priest sent by Jehoshaphat to teach the people the law (2 Chr. 17:8).
Elishaphat Whom God has judged, one of the “captains of hundreds” associated with Jehoiada in the league to overthrow the usurpation of Athaliah (2 Chr. 23:1).
Elisheba God is her oath, the daughter of Amminadab and the wife of Aaron (Ex. 6:23).
Elishua God his salvation, a son of David, 2 Sam. 5:15 = Elishama, 1 Chr. 3:6.
Elkanah God-created. (1.) The second son of Korah (Ex. 6:24), or, according to 1 Chr. 6:22, 23, more correctly his grandson.
(2.) Another Levite of the line of Heman the singer, although he does not seem to have performed any of the usual Levitical offices. He was father of Samuel the prophet (1 Chr. 6:27, 34). He was “an Ephrathite” (1 Sam. 1:1, 4, 8), but lived at Ramah, a man of wealth and high position. He had two wives, Hannah, who was the mother of Samuel, and Peninnah.
Elkosh God my bow, the birth-place of Nahum the prophet (Nah. 1:1). It was probably situated in Galilee, but nothing definite is known of it.
Ellasar The oak or heap of Assyria, a territory in Asia of which Arioch was king (Gen. 14:1, 9). It is supposed that the old Chaldean town of Larsa was the metropolis of this kingdom, situated nearly half-way between Ur (now Mugheir) and Erech, on the left bank of the Euphrates. This town is represented by the mounds of Senkereh, a little to the east of Erech.
Elm Hos. 4:13; rendered “terebinth” in the Revised Version. It is the Pistacia terebinthus of Linn., a tree common in Palestine, long-lived, and therefore often employed for landmarks and in designating places (Gen. 35:4; Judg. 6:11, 19. Rendered “oak” in both A.V. and R.V.). (See TEIL TREE.)
Elnathan Whom God has given. (1.) An inhabitant of Jerusalem, the father of Nehushta, who was the mother of king Jehoiachin (2 Kings 24:8). Probably the same who tried to prevent Jehoiakim from burning the roll of Jeremiah’s prophecies (Jer. 26:22; 36:12). (2.) Ezra 8:16.
Elon Oak. (1.) A city of Dan (Josh. 19:43). (2.) A Hittite, father of Bashemath, Esau’s wife (Gen. 26:34). (3.) One of the sons of Zebulun (Gen. 46:14). (4.) The eleventh of the Hebrew judges. He held office for ten years (Judg. 12:11, 12). He is called the Zebulonite.
Elparan Oak of Paran, a place on the edge of the wilderness bordering the territory of the Horites (Gen. 14:6). This was the farthest point to which Chedorlaomer’s expedition extended. It is identified with the modern desert of et-Tih. (See PARAN.)
Eltekeh God is its fear, a city in the tribe of Dan. It was a city of refuge and a Levitical city (Josh. 21:23). It has been identified with Beit-Likia, north-east of latrum.
Elul (Neh. 6:15), the name of the sixth month of the ecclesiastical year, and the twelfth of the civil year. It began with the new moon of our August and September, and consisted of twenty-nine days.
Elymas Magician or sorcerer, the Arabic name of the Jew Bar-jesus, who withstood Paul and Barnabas in Cyprus. He was miraculously struck with blindness (Acts 13:11).
Embalming The process of preserving a body by means of aromatics (Gen. 50:2, 3, 26). This art was practised by the Egyptians from the earliest times, and there brought to great perfection. This custom probably originated in the belief in the future reunion of the soul with the body. The process became more and more complicated, and to such perfection was it carried that bodies embalmed thousands of years ago are preserved to the present day in the numberless mummies that have been discovered in Egypt.
The embalming of Jacob and Joseph was according to the Egyptian custom, which was partially followed by the Jews (2 Chr. 16:14), as in the case of king Asa, and of our Lord (John 19:39, 40; Luke 23:56; 24:1). (See PHARAOH.)
Embroider The art of embroidery was known to the Jews (Ex. 26:36; 35:35; 38:23; Judg. 5:30; Ps. 45:14). The skill of the women in this art was seen in the preparation of the sacerdotal robes of the high priest (Ex. 28). It seems that the art became hereditary in certain families (1 Chr. 4:21). The Assyrians were also noted for their embroidered robes (Ezek. 27:24).
Emerald Heb. nophek (Ex. 28:18; 39:11); i.e., the “glowing stone”, probably the carbuncle, a precious stone in the breastplate of the high priest. It is mentioned (Rev. 21:19) as one of the foundations of the New Jerusalem. The name given to this stone in the New Testament Greek is smaragdos, which means “live coal.”
Emerod See HAEMORRHOIDS.
Emims Terrors, a warlike tribe of giants who were defeated by Chedorlaomer and his allies in the plain of Kiriathaim. In the time of Abraham they occupied the country east of Jordan, afterwards the land of the Moabites (Gen. 14:5; Deut. 2:10). They were, like the Anakim, reckoned among the Rephaim, and were conquered by the Moabites, who gave them the name of Emims, i.e., “terrible men” (Deut. 2:11). The Ammonites called them Zamzummims (2:20).
Emmanuel God with us, Matt. 1:23). (See IMMANUEL.)
Emmaus Hot baths, a village “three-score furlongs” from jerusalem, where our Lord had an interview with two of his disciples on the day of his resurrection (Luke 24:13). This has been identified with the modern el-Kubeibeh, lying over 7 miles north-west of Jerusalem. This name, el-Kubeibeh, meaning “little dome,” is derived from the remains of the Crusaders’ church yet to be found there. Others have identified it with the modern Khurbet Khamasa i.e., “the ruins of Khamasa”, about 8 miles south-west of Jerusalem, where there are ruins also of a Crusaders’ church. Its site, however has been much disputed.
Emmor An ass, Acts 7:16. (See HAMOR.)
Encamp An encampment was the resting-place for a longer or shorter period of an army or company of travellers (Ex. 13:20; 14:19; Josh. 10:5; 11:5).
The manner in which the Israelites encamped during their march through the wilderness is described in Num. 2 and 3. The order of the encampment (see CAMP) was preserved in the march (Num. 2:17), the signal for which was the blast of two silver trumpets. Detailed regulations affecting the camp for sanitary purposes are given (Lev. 4:11, 12; 6:11; 8:17; 10:4, 5; 13:46; 14:3; Num. 12:14, 15; 31:19; Deut. 23:10, 12).
Criminals were executed without the camp (Lev. 4:12; comp. John 19:17, 20), and there also the young bullock for a sin-offering was burnt (Lev. 24:14; comp. Heb. 13:12).
In the subsequent history of Israel frequent mention is made of their encampments in the time of war (Judg. 7:18; 1 Sam. 13:2, 3, 16, 23; 17:3; 29:1; 30:9, 24). The temple was sometimes called “the camp of the Lord” (2 Chr. 31:2, R.V.; comp. Ps. 78:28). The multitudes who flocked to David are styled “a great host (i.e., “camp;” Heb. mahaneh), like the host of God” (1 Chr. 12:22).
Enchantments (1.) The rendering of Hebrew latim_ or _lehatim, which means “something covered,” “muffled up;” secret arts, tricks (Ex. 7:11, 22; 8:7, 18), by which the Egyptian magicians imposed on the credulity of Pharaoh.
(2.) The rendering of the Hebrew keshaphim, “muttered spells” or “incantations,” rendered “sorceries” in Isa. 47:9, 12, i.e., the using of certain formulae under the belief that men could thus be bound.
(3.) Hebrew lehashim, “charming,” as of serpents (Jer. 8:17; comp. Ps. 58:5).
(4.) Hebrew nehashim, the enchantments or omens used by Balaam (Num. 24:1); his endeavouring to gain omens favourable to his design.
(5.) Hebrew heber (Isa. 47:9, 12), “magical spells.” All kinds of enchantments were condemned by the Mosaic law (Lev. 19:26; Deut. 18:10-12). (See DIVINATION.)
End In Heb. 13:7, is the rendering of the unusual Greek word ekbasin, meaning “outcome”, i.e., death. It occurs only elsewhere in 1 Cor. 10:13, where it is rendered “escape.”
Endor Fountain of Dor; i.e., “of the age”, a place in the territory of Issachar (Josh. 17:11) near the scene of the great victory which was gained by Deborah and Barak over Sisera and Jabin (comp. Ps. 83:9, 10). To Endor, Saul resorted to consult one reputed to be a witch on the eve of his last engagement with the Philistines (1 Sam. 28:7). It is identified with the modern village of Endur, “a dirty hamlet of some twenty houses, or rather huts, most of them falling to ruin,” on the northern slope of Little Hermon, about 7 miles from Jezreel.
En-eglaim Fountain of two calves, a place mentioned only in Ezek. 47:10. Somewhere near the Dead Sea.
En-gannim Fountain of gardens. (1.) A town in the plains of Judah (Josh. 15:34), north-west of Jerusalem, between Zanoah and Tappuah. It is the modern Umm Jina.
(2.) A city on the border of Machar (Josh. 19:21), allotted to the Gershonite Levites (21:29). It is identified with the modern Jenin, a large and prosperous town of about 4,000 inhabitants, situated 15 miles south of Mount Tabor, through which the road from Jezreel to Samaria and Jerusalem passes. When Ahaziah, king of Judah, attempted to escape from Jehu, he “fled by the way of the garden house” i.e., by way of En-gannim. Here he was overtaken by Jehu and wounded in his chariot, and turned aside and fled to Megiddo, a distance of about 20 miles, to die there.
Engedi Fountain of the kid, place in the wilderness of Judah (Josh. 15:62), on the western shore of the Dead Sea (Ezek. 47:10), and nearly equidistant from both extremities. To the wilderness near this town David fled for fear of Saul (Josh. 15:62; 1 Sam. 23:29). It was at first called Hazezon-tamar (Gen. 14:7), a city of the Amorites.
The vineyards of Engedi were celebrated in Solomon’s time (Cant. 1:4). It is the modern Ain Jidy. The “fountain” from which it derives its name rises on the mountain side about 600 feet above the sea, and in its rapid descent spreads luxuriance all around it. Along its banks the osher grows abundantly. That shrub is thus described by Porter: “The stem is stout, measuring sometimes nearly a foot in diameter, and the plant grows to the height of 15 feet or more. It has a grayish bark and long oval leaves, which when broken off discharge a milky fluid. The fruit resembles an apple, and hangs in clusters of two or three. When ripe it is of a rich yellow colour, but on being pressed it explodes like a puff-ball. It is chiefly filled with air…This is the so-called apple of Sodom.'” Through Samaria, etc. (See APPLE.)
Engines (1.) Heb. hishalon i.e., “invention” (as in Eccl. 7:29) contrivances indicating ingenuity. In 2 Chr. 26:15 it refers to inventions for the purpose of propelling missiles from the walls of a town, such as stones (the Roman balista) and arrows (the catapulta).
(2.) Heb. mechi kobollo, i.e., the beating of that which is in front a battering-ram (Ezek. 26:9), the use of which was common among the Egyptians and the Assyrians. Such an engine is mentioned in the reign of David (2 Sam. 20:15).
Engraver Heb. harash (Ex. 35:35; 38:23) means properly an artificer in wood, stone, or metal. The chief business of the engraver was cutting names or devices on rings and seals and signets (Ex. 28:11, 21, 36; Gen. 38:18).
En-hakkore Fountain of the crier, the name of the spring in Lehi which burst forth in answer to Samson’s prayer when he was exhausted with the slaughter of the Philistines (Judg. 15:19). It has been identified with the spring Ayun Kara, near Zoreah.
Enmity Deep-rooted hatred. “I will put enmity between thee and the woman, between thy seed and her seed” (Gen. 3:15). The friendship of the world is “enmity with God” (James 4:4; 1 John 2:15, 16). The “carnal mind” is “enmity against God” (Rom. 8:7). By the abrogation of the Mosaic institutes the “enmity” between Jew and Gentile is removed. They are reconciled, are “made one” (Eph. 2:15, 16).
Enoch Initiated. (1.) The eldest son of Cain (Gen. 4:17), who built a city east of Eden in the land of Nod, and called it “after the name of his son Enoch.” This is the first “city” mentioned in Scripture.
(2.) The son of Jared, and father of Methuselah (Gen. 5:21; Luke 3:37). His father was one hundred and sixty-two years old when he was born. After the birth of Methuselah, Enoch “walked with God three hundred years” (Gen. 5:22-24), when he was translated without tasting death. His whole life on earth was three hundred and sixty-five years. He was the “seventh from Adam” (Jude 1:14), as distinguished from the son of Cain, the third from Adam. He is spoken of in the catalogue of Old Testament worthies in the Epistle to the Hebrews (11:5). When he was translated, only Adam, so far as recorded, had as yet died a natural death, and Noah was not yet born. Mention is made of Enoch’s prophesying only in Jude 1:14.
Enos Man the son of Seth, and grandson of Adam (Gen. 5:6-11; Luke 3:38). He lived nine hundred and five years. In his time “men began to call upon the name of the Lord” (Gen. 4:26), meaning either (1) then began men to call themselves by the name of the Lord (marg.) i.e., to distinguish themselves thereby from idolaters; or (2) then men in some public and earnest way began to call upon the Lord, indicating a time of spiritual revival.
En-rogel Fountain of the treaders; i.e., “foot-fountain;” also called the “fullers’ fountain,” because fullers here trod the clothes in water. It has been identified with the “fountain of the virgin” (q.v.), the modern Ain Ummel-Daraj. Others identify it, with perhaps some probability, with the Bir Eyub, to the south of the Pool of Siloam, and below the junction of the valleys of Kidron and Hinnom. (See FOUNTAIN.)
It was at this fountain that Jonathan and Ahimaaz lay hid after the flight of David (2 Sam. 17:17); and here also Adonijah held the feast when he aspired to the throne of his father (1 Kings 1:9).
The Bir Eyub, or “Joab’s well,” “is a singular work of ancient enterprise. The shaft sunk through the solid rock in the bed of the Kidron is 125 feet deep…The water is pure and entirely sweet, quite different from that of Siloam; which proves that there is no connection between them.” Thomson’s Land and the Book.
En-shemesh Fountain of the sun a spring which formed one of the landmarks on the boundary between Judah and Benjamin (Josh. 15:7; 18:17). It was between the “ascent of Adummim” and the spring of En-rogel, and hence was on the east of Jerusalem and of the Mount of Olives. It is the modern Ain-Haud i.e., the “well of the apostles” about a mile east of Bethany, the only spring on the road to Jericho. The sun shines on it the whole day long.
Ensign (1.) Heb. oth, a military standard, especially of a single tribe (Num. 2:2). Each separate tribe had its own “sign” or “ensign.”
(2.) Heb. nes, a lofty signal, as a column or high pole (Num. 21:8, 9); a standard or signal or flag placed on high mountains to point out to the people a place of rendezvous on the irruption of an enemy (Isa. 5:26; 11:12; 18:3; 62:10; Jer. 4:6, 21; Ps. 60:4). This was an occasional signal, and not a military standard. Elevation and conspicuity are implied in the word.
(3.) The Hebrew word degel denotes the standard given to each of the four divisions of the host of the Israelites at the Exodus (Num. 1:52; 2:2; 10:14). In Cant. 2:4 it is rendered “banner.” We have no definite information as to the nature of these military standards. (See BANNER.)
Entertain Entertainments, “feasts,” were sometimes connected with a public festival (Deut. 16:11, 14), and accompanied by offerings (1 Sam. 9:13), in token of alliances (Gen. 26:30); sometimes in connection with domestic or social events, as at the weaning of children (Gen. 21:8), at weddings (Gen. 29:22; John 2:1), on birth-days (Matt. 14:6), at the time of sheep-shearing (2 Sam. 13:23), and of vintage (Judg. 9:27), and at funerals (2 Sam. 3:35; Jer. 16:7).
The guests were invited by servants (Prov. 9:3; Matt. 22:3), who assigned them their respective places (1 Sam. 9:22; Luke 14:8; Mark 12:39). Like portions were sent by the master to each guest (1 Sam. 1:4; 2 Sam. 6:19), except when special honour was intended, when the portion was increased (Gen. 43:34).
The Israelites were forbidden to attend heathenish sacrificial entertainments (Ex. 34:15), because these were in honour of false gods, and because at such feast they would be liable to partake of unclean flesh (1 Cor. 10:28).
In the entertainments common in apostolic times among the Gentiles were frequent “revellings,” against which Christians were warned (Rom. 13:13; Gal. 5:21; 1 Pet. 4:3). (See BANQUET.)
Epaenetus Commendable, a Christian at Rome to whom Paul sent his salutation (Rom. 16:5). He is spoken of as “the first fruits of Achaia” (R.V., “of Asia”, i.e., of proconsular Asia, which is probably the correct reading). As being the first convert in that region, he was peculiarly dear to the apostle. He calls him his “well beloved.”
Epaphras Lovely, spoken of by Paul (Col. 1:7; 4:12) as “his dear fellow-servant,” and “a faithful minister of Christ.” He was thus evidently with him at Rome when he wrote to the Colossians. He was a distinguished disciple, and probably the founder of the Colossian church. He is also mentioned in the Epistle to Philemon (1:23), where he is called by Paul his “fellow-prisoner.”
Epaphroditus Fair, graceful; belonging to Aphrodite or Venus the messenger who came from Phillipi to the apostle when he was a prisoner at Rome (Phil. 2:25-30; 4:10-18). Paul mentions him in words of esteem and affection. On his return to Philippi he was the bearer of Paul’s letter to the church there.
Ephah Gloom. (1.) One of the five sons of Midian, and grandson of Abraham (Gen. 25:4). The city of Ephah, to which he gave his name, is mentioned Isa. 60:6, 7. This city, with its surrounding territory, formed part of Midian, on the east shore of the Dead Sea. It abounded in dromedaries and camels (Judg. 6:5).
(2.) 1 Chr. 2:46, a concubine of Caleb.
(3.) 1 Chr. 2:47, a descendant of Judah.
Ephah, a word of Egyptian origin, meaning measure; a grain measure containing “three seahs or ten omers,” and equivalent to the bath for liquids (Ex. 16:36; 1 Sam. 17:17; Zech. 5:6). The double ephah in Prov. 20:10 (marg., “an ephah and an ephah”), Deut. 25:14, means two ephahs, the one false and the other just.
Epher A calf. (1.) One of the sons of Midian, who was Abraham’s son by Keturah (Gen. 25:4).
(2.) The head of one of the families of trans-Jordanic Manasseh who were carried captive by Tiglath-pileser (1 Chr. 5:24).
Ephes-dammim Boundary of blood, a place in the tribe of Judah where the Philistines encamped when David fought with Goliath (1 Sam. 17:1). It was probably so called as having been the scene of frequent sanguinary conflicts between Israel and the Philistines. It is called Pas-dammim (1 Chr. 11:13). It has been identified with the modern Beit Fased, i.e., “house of bleeding”, near Shochoh (q.v.).
Ephesians, Epistle to Was written by Paul at Rome about the same time as that to the Colossians, which in many points it resembles.
Contents of. The Epistle to the Colossians is mainly polemical, designed to refute certain theosophic errors that had crept into the church there. That to the Ephesians does not seem to have originated in any special circumstances, but is simply a letter springing from Paul’s love to the church there, and indicative of his earnest desire that they should be fully instructed in the profound doctrines of the gospel. It contains (1) the salutation (1:1, 2); (2) a general description of the blessings the gospel reveals, as to their source, means by which they are attained, purpose for which they are bestowed, and their final result, with a fervent prayer for the further spiritual enrichment of the Ephesians (1:3-2:10); (3) “a record of that marked change in spiritual position which the Gentile believers now possessed, ending with an account of the writer’s selection to and qualification for the apostolate of heathendom, a fact so considered as to keep them from being dispirited, and to lead him to pray for enlarged spiritual benefactions on his absent sympathizers” (2:12-3:21); (4) a chapter on unity as undisturbed by diversity of gifts (4:1-16); (5) special injunctions bearing on ordinary life (4:17-6:10); (6) the imagery of a spiritual warfare, mission of Tychicus, and valedictory blessing (6:11-24).
Planting of the church at Ephesus. Paul’s first and hurried visit for the space of three months to Ephesus is recorded in Acts 18:19-21. The work he began on this occasion was carried forward by Apollos (24-26) and Aquila and Priscilla. On his second visit, early in the following year, he remained at Ephesus “three years,” for he found it was the key to the western provinces of Asia Minor. Here “a great door and effectual” was opened to him (1 Cor. 16:9), and the church was established and strengthened by his assiduous labours there (Acts 20:20, 31). From Ephesus as a centre the gospel spread abroad “almost throughout all Asia” (19:26). The word “mightily grew and prevailed” despite all the opposition and persecution he encountered.
On his last journey to Jerusalem the apostle landed at Miletus, and summoning together the elders of the church from Ephesus, delivered to them his remarkable farewell charge (Acts 20:18-35), expecting to see them no more.
The following parallels between this epistle and the Milesian charge may be traced:
(1.) Acts 20:19 = Eph. 4:2. The phrase “lowliness of mind” occurs nowhere else.
(2.) Acts 20:27 = Eph. 1:11. The word “counsel,” as denoting the divine plan, occurs only here and Heb. 6:17.
(3.) Acts 20:32 = Eph. 3:20. The divine ability.
(4.) Acts 20:32 = Eph. 2:20. The building upon the foundation.
(5.) Acts 20:32 = Eph. 1:14, 18. “The inheritance of the saints.”
Place and date of the writing of the letter. It was evidently written from Rome during Paul’s first imprisonment (3:1; 4:1; 6:20), and probably soon after his arrival there, about the year 62, four years after he had parted with the Ephesian elders at Miletus. The subscription of this epistle is correct.
There seems to have been no special occasion for the writing of this letter, as already noted. Paul’s object was plainly not polemical. No errors had sprung up in the church which he sought to point out and refute. The object of the apostle is “to set forth the ground, the cause, and the aim and end of the church of the faithful in Christ. He speaks to the Ephesians as a type or sample of the church universal.” The church’s foundations, its course, and its end, are his theme. “Everywhere the foundation of the church is the will of the Father; the course of the church is by the satisfaction of the Son; the end of the church is the life in the Holy Spirit.” In the Epistle to the Romans, Paul writes from the point of view of justification by the imputed righteousness of Christ; here he writes from the point of view specially of union to the Redeemer, and hence of the oneness of the true church of Christ. “This is perhaps the profoundest book in existence.” It is a book “which sounds the lowest depths of Christian doctrine, and scales the loftiest heights of Christian experience;” and the fact that the apostle evidently expected the Ephesians to understand it is an evidence of the “proficiency which Paul’s converts had attained under his preaching at Ephesus.”
Relation between this epistle and that to the Colossians (q.v.). “The letters of the apostle are the fervent outburst of pastoral zeal and attachment, written without reserve and in unaffected simplicity; sentiments come warm from the heart, without the shaping out, pruning, and punctilious arrangement of a formal discourse. There is such a fresh and familiar transcription of feeling, so frequent an introduction of coloquial idiom, and so much of conversational frankness and vivacity, that the reader associates the image of the writer with every paragraph, and the ear seems to catch and recognize the very tones of living address.” “Is it then any matter of amazement that one letter should resemble another, or that two written about the same time should have so much in common and so much that is peculiar? The close relation as to style and subject between the epistles to Colosse and Ephesus must strike every reader. Their precise relation to each other has given rise to much discussion. The great probability is that the epistle to Colosse was first written; the parallel passages in Ephesians, which amount to about forty-two in number, having the appearance of being expansions from the epistle to Colosse. Compare:
Eph 1:7; Col 1:14 Eph 1:10; Col 1:20 Eph 3:2; Col 1:25 Eph 5:19; Col 3:16 Eph 6:22; Col 4:8 Eph 1:19-2:5; Col 2:12, 13 Eph 4:2-4; Col 3:12-15 Eph 4:16; Col 2:19 Eph 4:32; Col 3:13 Eph 4:22-24; Col 3:9, 10 Eph 5:6-8; Col 3:6-8 Eph 5:15, 16; Col 4:5 Eph 6:19, 20; Col 4:3, 4 Eph 5:22-6:9; Col 3:18-4:1
“The style of this epistle is exceedingly animated, and corresponds with the state of the apostle’s mind at the time of writing. Overjoyed with the account which their messenger had brought him of their faith and holiness (Eph. 1:15), and transported with the consideration of the unsearchable wisdom of God displayed in the work of man’s redemption, and of his astonishing love towards the Gentiles in making them partakers through faith of all the benefits of Christ’s death, he soars high in his sentiments on those grand subjects, and gives his thoughts utterance in sublime and copious expression.”
Ephesus The capital of proconsular Asia, which was the western part of Asia Minor. It was colonized principally from Athens. In the time of the Romans it bore the title of “the first and greatest metropolis of Asia.” It was distinguished for the Temple of Diana (q.v.), who there had her chief shrine; and for its theatre, which was the largest in the world, capable of containing 50,000 spectators. It was, like all ancient theatres, open to the sky. Here were exhibited the fights of wild beasts and of men with beasts. (Comp. 1 Cor. 4:9; 9:24, 25; 15:32.)
Many Jews took up their residence in this city, and here the seeds of the gospel were sown immediately after Pentecost (Acts 2:9; 6:9). At the close of his second missionary journey (about A.D. 51), when Paul was returning from Greece to Syria (18:18-21), he first visited this city. He remained, however, for only a short time, as he was hastening to keep the feast, probably of Pentecost, at Jerusalem; but he left Aquila and Priscilla behind him to carry on the work of spreading the gospel.
During his third missionary journey Paul reached Ephesus from the “upper coasts” (Acts 19:1), i.e., from the inland parts of Asia Minor, and tarried here for about three years; and so successful and abundant were his labours that “all they which dwelt in Asia heard the word of the Lord Jesus, both Jews and Greeks” (19:10). Probably during this period the seven churches of the Apocalypse were founded, not by Paul’s personal labours, but by missionaries whom he may have sent out from Ephesus, and by the influence of converts returning to their homes.
On his return from his journey, Paul touched at Miletus, some 30 miles south of Ephesus (Acts 20:15), and sending for the presbyters of Ephesus to meet him there, he delivered to them that touching farewell charge which is recorded in Acts 20:18-35. Ephesus is not again mentioned till near the close of Paul’s life, when he writes to Timothy exhorting him to “abide still at Ephesus” (1 Tim. 1:3).
Two of Paul’s companions, Trophimus and Tychicus, were probably natives of Ephesus (Acts 20:4; 21:29; 2 Tim. 4:12). In his second epistle to Timothy, Paul speaks of Onesiphorus as having served him in many things at Ephesus (2 Tim. 1:18). He also “sent Tychicus to Ephesus” (4:12), probably to attend to the interests of the church there. Ephesus is twice mentioned in the Apocalypse (1:11; 2:1).
The apostle John, according to tradition, spent many years in Ephesus, where he died and was buried.
A part of the site of this once famous city is now occupied by a small Turkish village, Ayasaluk, which is regarded as a corruption of the two Greek words, hagios theologos; i.e., “the holy divine.”
Ephod Something girt, a sacred vestment worn originally by the high priest (Ex. 28:4), afterwards by the ordinary priest (1 Sam. 22:18), and characteristic of his office (1 Sam. 2:18, 28; 14:3). It was worn by Samuel, and also by David (2 Sam. 6:14). It was made of fine linen, and consisted of two pieces, which hung from the neck, and covered both the back and front, above the tunic and outer garment (Ex. 28:31). That of the high priest was embroidered with divers colours. The two pieces were joined together over the shoulders (hence in Latin called superhumerale) by clasps or buckles of gold or precious stones, and fastened round the waist by a “curious girdle of gold, blue, purple, and fine twined linen” (28:6-12).
The breastplate, with the Urim and Thummim, was attached to the ephod.
Ephphatha The Greek form of a Syro-Chaldaic or Aramaic word, meaning “Be opened,” uttered by Christ when healing the man who was deaf and dumb (Mark 7:34). It is one of the characteristics of Mark that he uses the very Aramaic words which fell from our Lord’s lips. (See 3:17; 5:41; 7:11; 14:36; 15:34.)
Ephraim Double fruitfulness (“for God had made him fruitful in the land of his affliction”). The second son of Joseph, born in Egypt (Gen. 41:52; 46:20). The first incident recorded regarding him is his being placed, along with his brother Manasseh, before their grandfather, Jacob, that he might bless them (48:10; comp. 27:1). The intention of Joseph was that the right hand of the aged patriarch should be placed on the head of the elder of the two; but Jacob set Ephraim the younger before his brother, “guiding his hands wittingly.” Before Joseph’s death, Ephraim’s family had reached the third generation (Gen. 50:23).
Ephraim, Gate of One of the gates of Jerusalem (2 Kings 14:13; 2 Chr. 25:23), on the side of the city looking toward Ephraim, the north side.
Ephraim in the wilderness (John 11: 54), a town to which our Lord retired with his disciples after he had raised Lazarus, and when the priests were conspiring against him. It lay in the wild, uncultivated hill-country to the north-east of Jerusalem, betwen the central towns and the Jordan valley.
Ephraim, Mount The central mountainous district of Palestine occupied by the tribe of Ephraim (Josh. 17:15; 19:50; 20:7), extending from Bethel to the plain of Jezreel. In Joshua’s time (Josh. 17:18) these hills were densely wooded. They were intersected by well-watered, fertile valleys, referred to in Jer. 50:19. Joshua was buried at Timnath-heres among the mountains of Ephraim, on the north side of the hill of Gaash (Judg. 2:9). This region is also called the “mountains of Israel” (Josh. 11:21) and the “mountains of Samaria” (Jer. 31:5, 6: Amos 3:9).
Ephraim, The tribe of Took precedence over that of Manasseh by virtue of Jacob’s blessing (Gen. 41:52; 48:1). The descendants of Joseph formed two of the tribes of Israel, whereas each of the other sons of Jacob was the founder of only one tribe. Thus there were in reality thirteen tribes; but the number twelve was preserved by excluding that of Levi when Ephraim and Manasseh are mentioned separately (Num. 1:32-34; Josh. 17:14, 17; 1 Chr. 7:20).
Territory of. At the time of the first census in the wilderness this tribe numbered 40,500 (Num. 1:32, 33); forty years later, when about to take possession of the Promised Land, it numbered only 32,500. During the march (see CAMP) Ephraim’s place was on the west side of the tabernacle (Num. 2:18-24). When the spies were sent out to spy the land, “Oshea the son of Nun” of this tribe signalized himself.
The boundaries of the portion of the land assigned to Ephraim are given in Josh. 16:1-10. It included most of what was afterwards called Samaria as distinguished from Judea and Galilee. It thus lay in the centre of all traffic, from north to south, and from Jordan to the sea, and was about 55 miles long and 30 broad. The tabernacle and the ark were deposited within its limits at Shiloh, where it remained for four hundred years. During the time of the judges and the first stage of the monarchy this tribe manifested a domineering and haughty and discontented spirit. “For more than five hundred years, a period equal to that which elapsed between the Norman Conquest and the War of the Roses, Ephraim, with its two dependent tribes of Manasseh and Benjamin, exercised undisputed pre-eminence. Joshua the first conqueror, Gideon the greatest of the judges, and Saul the first king, belonged to one or other of the three tribes. It was not till the close of the first period of Jewish history that God refused the tabernacle of Joseph, and chose not the tribe of Ephraim, but chose the tribe of Judah, the Mount Zion which he loved’ (Ps. 78:67, 68). When the ark was removed from Shiloh to Zion the power of Ephraim was humbled.”
Among the causes which operated to bring about the disruption of Israel was Ephraim’s jealousy of the growing power of Judah. From the settlement of Canaan till the time of David and Solomon, Ephraim had held the place of honour among the tribes. It occupied the central and fairest portions of the land, and had Shiloh and Shechem within its borders. But now when Jerusalem became the capital of the kingdom, and the centre of power and worship for the whole nation of Israel, Ephraim declined in influence. The discontent came to a crisis by Rehoboam’s refusal to grant certain redresses that were demanded (1 Kings 12).
Ephraim, Wood of A forest in which a fatal battle was fought between the army of David and that of Absalom, who was killed there (2 Sam. 18:6, 8). It lay on the east of Jordan, not far from Mahanaim, and was some part of the great forest of Gilead.
Ephratah Fruitful. (1.) The second wife of Caleb, the son of Hezron, mother of Hur, and grandmother of Caleb, who was one of those that were sent to spy the land (1 Chr. 2:19, 50).
(2.) The ancient name of Bethlehem in Judah (Gen. 35:16, 19; 48:7). In Ruth 1:2 it is called “Bethlehem-Judah,” but the inhabitants are called “Ephrathites;” in Micah 5:2, “Bethlehem-Ephratah;” in Matt. 2:6, “Bethlehem in the land of Judah.” In Ps. 132:6 it is mentioned as the place where David spent his youth, and where he heard much of the ark, although he never saw it till he found it long afterwards at Kirjath-jearim; i.e., the “city of the wood,” or the “forest-town” (1 Sam. 7:1; comp. 2 Sam. 6:3, 4).
Ephrathite A citizen of Ephratah, the old name of Bethlehem (Ruth 1:2; 1 Sam. 17:12), or Bethlehem-Judah.
Ephron Fawn-like. (1.) The son of Zohar a Hittite, the owner of the field and cave of Machpelah (q.v.), which Abraham bought for 400 shekels of silver (Gen. 23:8-17; 25:9; 49:29, 30).
(2.) A mountain range which formed one of the landmarks on the north boundary of the tribe of Judah (Josh. 15:9), probably the range on the west side of the Wady Beit-Hanina.
Epicureans Followers of Epicurus (who died at Athens B.C. 270), or adherents of the Epicurean philosophy (Acts 17:18). This philosophy was a system of atheism, and taught men to seek as their highest aim a pleasant and smooth life. They have been called the “Sadducees” of Greek paganism. They, with the Stoics, ridiculed the teaching of Paul (Acts 17:18). They appear to have been greatly esteemed at Athens.
Epistles The apostolic letters. The New Testament contains twenty-one in all. They are divided into two classes. (1.) Paul’s Epistles, fourteen in number, including Hebrews. These are not arranged in the New Testament in the order of time as to their composition, but rather according to the rank of the cities or places to which they were sent. Who arranged them after this manner is unknown. Paul’s letters were, as a rule, dictated to an amanuensis, a fact which accounts for some of their peculiarities. He authenticated them, however, by adding a few words in his own hand at the close. (See GALATIANS, EPISTLE TO.)
The epistles to Timothy and Titus are styled the Pastoral Epistles.
(2.) The Catholic or General Epistles, so called because they are not addressed to any particular church or city or individual, but to Christians in general, or to Christians in several countries. Of these, three are written by John, two by Peter, and one each by James and Jude.
It is an interesting and instructive fact that a large portion of the New Testament is taken up with epistles. The doctrines of Christianity are thus not set forth in any formal treatise, but mainly in a collection of letters. “Christianity was the first great missionary religion. It was the first to break the bonds of race and aim at embracing all mankind. But this necessarily involved a change in the mode in which it was presented. The prophet of the Old Testament, if he had anything to communicate, either appeared in person or sent messengers to speak for him by word of mouth. The narrow limits of Palestine made direct personal communication easy. But the case was different when the Christian Church came to consist of a number of scattered parts, stretching from Mesopotamia in the east to Rome or even Spain in the far west. It was only natural that the apostle by whom the greater number of these communities had been founded should seek to communicate with them by letter.”
Erastus Beloved. (1.) The “chamberlain” of the city of Corinth (Rom. 16:23), and one of Paul’s disciples. As treasurer of such a city he was a public officer of great dignity, and his conversion to the gospel was accordingly a proof of the wonderful success of the apostle’s labours.
(2.) A companion of Paul at Ephesus, who was sent by him along with Timothy into Macedonia (Acts 19:22). Corinth was his usual place of abode (2 Tim. 4:20); but probably he may have been the same as the preceding.
Erech (LXX., “Orech”), length, or Moon-town, one of the cities of Nimrod’s kingdom in the plain of Shinar (Gen. 10:10); the Orchoe of the Greeks and Romans. It was probably the city of the Archevites, who were transplanted to Samaria by Asnapper (Ezra 4:9). It lay on the left bank of the Euphrates, about 120 miles south-east of Babylon, and is now represented by the mounds and ruins of Warka. It appears to have been the necropolis of the Assyrian kings, as the whole region is strewed with bricks and the remains of coffins. “Standing on the summit of the principal edifice, called the Buwarizza, a tower 200 feet square in the centre of the ruins, the beholder is struck with astonishment at the enormous accumulation of mounds and ancient relics at his feet. An irregular circle, nearly 6 miles in circumference, is defined by the traces of an earthen rampart, in some places 40 feet high.”
Esaias The Greek form for Isaiah, constantly used in the Authorized Version of the New Testament (Matt. 3:3; 4:14), but in the Revised Version always “Isaiah.”
Esarhaddon Assur has given a brother, successor of Sennacherib (2 Kings 19:37; Isa. 37:38). He ascended the throne about B.C. 681. Nothing further is recorded of him in Scripture, except that he settled certain colonists in Samaria (Ezra 4:2). But from the monuments it appears that he was the most powerful of all the Assyrian monarchs. He built many temples and palaces, the most magnificent of which was the south-west palace at Nimrud, which is said to have been in its general design almost the same as Solomon’s palace, only much larger (1 Kings 7:1-12).
In December B.C. 681 Sennacherib was murdered by two of his sons, who, after holding Nineveh for forty-two days, were compelled to fly to Erimenas of Ararat, or Armenia. Their brother Esarhaddon, who had been engaged in a campaign against Armenia, led his army against them. They were utterly overthrown in a battle fought April B.C. 680, near Malatiyeh, and in the following month Esarhaddon was crowned at Nineveh. He restored Babylon, conquered Egypt, and received tribute from Manasseh of Judah. He died in October B.C. 668, while on the march to suppress an Egyptian revolt, and was succeeded by his son Assur-bani-pal, whose younger brother was made viceroy of Babylonia.
Esau Hairy, Rebekah’s first-born twin son (Gen. 25:25). The name of Edom, “red”, was also given to him from his conduct in connection with the red lentil “pottage” for which he sold his birthright (30, 31). The circumstances connected with his birth foreshadowed the enmity which afterwards subsisted between the twin brothers and the nations they founded (25:22, 23, 26). In process of time Jacob, following his natural bent, became a shepherd; while Esau, a “son of the desert,” devoted himself to the perilous and toilsome life of a huntsman. On a certain occasion, on returning from the chase, urged by the cravings of hunger, Esau sold his birthright to his brother, Jacob, who thereby obtained the covenant blessing (Gen. 27:28, 29, 36; Heb. 12:16, 17). He afterwards tried to regain what he had so recklessly parted with, but was defeated in his attempts through the stealth of his brother (Gen. 27:4, 34, 38).
At the age of forty years, to the great grief of his parents, he married (Gen. 26:34, 35) two Canaanitish maidens, Judith, the daughter of Beeri, and Bashemath, the daughter of Elon. When Jacob was sent away to Padan-aram, Esau tried to conciliate his parents (Gen. 28:8, 9) by marrying his cousin Mahalath, the daughter of Ishmael. This led him to cast in his lot with the Ishmaelite tribes; and driving the Horites out of Mount Seir, he settled in that region. After some thirty years’ sojourn in Padan-aram Jacob returned to Canaan, and was reconciled to Esau, who went forth to meet him (33:4). Twenty years after this, Isaac their father died, when the two brothers met, probably for the last time, beside his grave (35:29). Esau now permanently left Canaan, and established himself as a powerful and wealthy chief in the land of Edom (q.v.).
Long after this, when the descendants of Jacob came out of Egypt, the Edomites remembered the old quarrel between the brothers, and with fierce hatred they warred against Israel.
Eschew From old French eschever, “to flee from” (Job 1:1, 8; 2:3; 1 Pet. 3:11).
Esdraelon The Greek form of the Hebrew “Jezreel,” the name of the great plain (called by the natives Merj Ibn Amer; i.e., “the meadow of the son of Amer”) which stretches across Central Palestine from the Jordan to the Mediterraanean, separating the mountain ranges of Carmel and Samaria from those of Galilee, extending about 14 miles from north to south, and 9 miles from east to west. It is drained by “that ancient river” the Kishon, which flows westward to the Mediterranean. From the foot of Mount Tabor it branches out into three valleys, that on the north passing between Tabor and Little Hermon (Judg. 4:14); that on the south between Mount Gilboa and En-gannim (2 Kings 9:27); while the central portion, the “valley of Jezreel” proper, runs into the Jordan valley (which is about 1,000 feet lower than Esdraelon) by Bethshean. Here Gideon gained his great victory over the Midianites (Judg. 7:1-25). Here also Barak defeated Sisera, and Saul’s army was defeated by the Philistines, and king Josiah, while fighting in disguise against Necho, king of Egypt, was slain (2 Chr. 35:20-27; 2 Kings 23-29). This plain has been well called the “battle-field of Palestine.” “It has been a chosen place for encampment in every contest carried on in this country, from the days of Nebuchadnezzar, king of the Assyrians, in the history of whose wars with Arphaxad it is mentioned as the Great Plain of Esdraelon, until the disastrous march of Napoleon Bonaparte from Egypt into Syria. Jews, Gentiles, Saracens, Crusaders, Frenchmen, Egyptians, Persians, Druses, Turks, and Arabs, warriors out of every nation which is under heaven, have pitched their tents in the plain, and have beheld the various banners of their nations wet with the dews of Tabor and Hermon” (Dr. Clark).
Esek Quarrel, a well which Isaac’s herdsmen dug in the valley of Gerar, and so called because the herdsmen of Gerar quarrelled with them for its possession (Gen. 26:20).
Eshbaal Man of Baal, the fourth son of king Saul (1 Chr. 8:33; 9:39). He is also called Ish-bosheth (q.v.), 2 Sam. 2:8.
Eshcol Bunch; brave. (1.) A young Amoritish chief who joined Abraham in the recovery of Lot from the hands of Chedorlaomer (Gen. 14:13, 24).
(2.) A valley in which the spies obtained a fine cluster of grapes (Num. 13:23, 24; “the brook Eshcol,” A.V.; “the valley of Eshcol,” R.V.), which they took back with them to the camp of Israel as a specimen of the fruits of the Promised Land. On their way back they explored the route which led into the south (the Negeb) by the western edge of the mountains at Telilat el-Anab, i.e., “grape-mounds”, near Beersheba. “In one of these extensive valleys, perhaps in Wady Hanein, where miles of grape-mounds even now meet the eye, they cut the gigantic clusters of grapes, and gathered the pomegranates and figs, to show how goodly was the land which the Lord had promised for their inheritance.”, Palmer’s Desert of the Exodus.
Eshean A place in the mountains of Judah (Josh. 15:52), supposed to be the ruin es-Simia, near Dumah, south of Hebron.
Eshtaol Narrow pass or recess, a town (Josh. 15:33) in the low country, the She-phelah of Judah. It was allotted to the tribe of Dan (Josh. 19:41), and was one of their strongholds. Here Samson spent his boyhood, and first began to show his mighty strength; and here he was buried in the burying-place of Manoah his father (Judg. 13:25; 16:31; 18:2, 8, 11, 12). It is identified with the modern Yeshua, on a hill 2 miles east of Zorah. Others, however, identify it with Kustul, east of Kirjath-jearim.
Eshtemoa Obedience, a town in the mountains of Judah (Josh. 21:14; 1 Chr. 6:57), which was allotted, with the land round it, to the priests. It was frequented by David and his followers during their wanderings; and he sent presents of the spoil of the Amalekites to his friends there (1 Sam. 30:28). It is identified with es-Semu’a, a village about 3 1/2 miles east of Socoh, and 7 or 8 miles south of Hebron, around which there are ancient remains of the ruined city. It is the centre of the “south country” or Negeb. It is also called “Eshtemoh” (Josh. 15:50).
Espouse (2 Sam. 3:14), to betroth. The espousal was a ceremony of betrothing, a formal agreement between the parties then coming under obligation for the purpose of marriage. Espousals are in the East frequently contracted years before the marriage is celebrated. It is referred to as figuratively illustrating the relations between God and his people (Jer. 2:2; Matt. 1:18; 2 Cor. 11:2). (See BETROTH.)
Essenes A Jewish mystical sect somewhat resembling the Pharisees. They affected great purity. They originated about B.C. 100, and disappeared from history after the destruction of Jerusalem. They are not directly mentioned in Scripture, although they may be referred to in Matt. 19:11, 12, Col. 2:8, 18, 23.
Esther The queen of Ahasuerus, and heroine of the book that bears her name. She was a Jewess named Hadas’sah (the myrtle), but when she entered the royal harem she received the name by which she henceforth became known (Esther 2:7). It is a Syro-Arabian modification of the Persian word satarah, which means a star. She was the daughter of Abihail, a Benjamite. Her family did not avail themselves of the permission granted by Cyrus to the exiles to return to Jerusalem; and she resided with her cousin Mordecai, who held some office in the household of the Persian king at “Shushan in the palace.” Ahasuerus having divorced Vashti, chose Esther to be his wife. Soon after this he gave Haman the Agagite, his prime minister, power and authority to kill and extirpate all the Jews throughout the Persian empire. By the interposition of Esther this terrible catastrophe was averted. Haman was hanged on the gallows he had intended for Mordecai (Esther 7); and the Jews established an annual feast, the feast of Purim (q.v.), in memory of their wonderful deliverance. This took place about fifty-two years after the Return, the year of the great battles of Plataea and Mycale (B.C. 479).
Esther appears in the Bible as a “woman of deep piety, faith, courage, patriotism, and caution, combined with resolution; a dutiful daughter to her adopted father, docile and obedient to his counsels, and anxious to share the king’s favour with him for the good of the Jewish people. There must have been a singular grace and charm in her aspect and manners, since she obtained favour in the sight of all them that looked upon her’ (Esther 2:15). That she was raised up as an instrument in the hand of God to avert the destruction of the Jewish people, and to afford them protection and forward their wealth and peace in their captivity, is also manifest from the Scripture account.”
Esther, Book of The authorship of this book is unknown. It must have been obviously written after the death of Ahasuerus (the Xerxes of the Greeks), which took place B.C. 465. The minute and particular account also given of many historical details makes it probable that the writer was contemporary with Mordecai and Esther. Hence we may conclude that the book was written probably about B.C. 444-434, and that the author was one of the Jews of the dispersion.
This book is more purely historical than any other book of Scripture; and it has this remarkable peculiarity that the name of God does not occur in it from first to last in any form. It has, however, been well observed that “though the name of God be not in it, his finger is.” The book wonderfully exhibits the providential government of God.
Etam Eyrie. (1.) A village of the tribe of Simeon (1 Chr. 4:32). Into some cleft (“top,” A.V.,; R.V., “cleft”) of a rock here Samson retired after his slaughter of the Philistines (Judg. 15:8, 11). It was a natural stronghold. It has been identified with Beit ‘Atab, west of Bethlehem, near Zorah and Eshtaol. On the crest of a rocky knoll, under the village, is a long tunnel, which may be the “cleft” in which Samson hid.
(2.) A city of Judah, fortified by Rehoboam (2 Chr. 11:6). It was near Bethlehem and Tekoah, and some distance apparently to the north of (1). It seems to have been in the district called Nephtoah (or Netophah), where were the sources of the water from which Solomon’s gardens and pleasure-grounds and pools, as well as Bethlehem and the temple, were supplied. It is now Ain ‘Atan, at the head of the Wady Urtas, a fountain sending forth a copious supply of pure water.
Eternal death The miserable fate of the wicked in hell (Matt. 25:46; Mark 3:29; Heb. 6:2; 2 Thess. 1:9; Matt. 18:8; 25:41; Jude 1:7). The Scripture as clearly teaches the unending duration of the penal sufferings of the lost as the “everlasting life,” the “eternal life” of the righteous. The same Greek words in the New Testament (aion, aionios, aidios) are used to express (1) the eternal existence of God (1 Tim. 1:17; Rom. 1:20; 16:26); (2) of Christ (Rev. 1:18); (3) of the Holy Ghost (Heb. 9:14); and (4) the eternal duration of the sufferings of the lost (Matt. 25:46; Jude 1:6).
Their condition after casting off the mortal body is spoken of in these expressive words: “Fire that shall not be quenched” (Mark 9:45, 46), “fire unquenchable” (Luke 3:17), “the worm that never dies,” the “bottomless pit” (Rev. 9:1), “the smoke of their torment ascending up for ever and ever” (Rev. 14:10, 11).
The idea that the “second death” (Rev. 20:14) is in the case of the wicked their absolute destruction, their annihilation, has not the slightest support from Scripture, which always represents their future as one of conscious suffering enduring for ever.
The supposition that God will ultimately secure the repentance and restoration of all sinners is equally unscriptural. There is not the slightest trace in all the Scriptures of any such restoration. Sufferings of themselves have no tendency to purify the soul from sin or impart spiritual life. The atoning death of Christ and the sanctifying power of the Holy Spirit are the only means of divine appointment for bringing men to repentance. Now in the case of them that perish these means have been rejected, and “there remaineth no more sacrifice for sins” (Heb. 10:26, 27).
Eternal life This expression occurs in the Old Testament only in Dan. 12:2 (R.V., “everlasting life”).
It occurs frequently in the New Testament (Matt. 7:14; 18:8, 9; Luke 10:28; comp. 18:18). It comprises the whole future of the redeemed (Luke 16:9), and is opposed to “eternal punishment” (Matt. 19:29; 25:46). It is the final reward and glory into which the children of God enter (1 Tim. 6:12, 19; Rom. 6:22; Gal. 6:8; 1 Tim. 1:16; Rom. 5:21); their Sabbath of rest (Heb. 4:9; comp. 12:22).
The newness of life which the believer derives from Christ (Rom. 6:4) is the very essence of salvation, and hence the life of glory or the eternal life must also be theirs (Rom. 6:8; 2 Tim. 2:11, 12; Rom. 5:17, 21; 8:30; Eph. 2:5, 6). It is the “gift of God in Jesus Christ our Lord” (Rom. 6:23). The life the faithful have here on earth (John 3:36; 5:24; 6:47, 53-58) is inseparably connected with the eternal life beyond, the endless life of the future, the happy future of the saints in heaven (Matt. 19:16, 29; 25:46).
Etham Perhaps another name for Khetam, or “fortress,” on the Shur or great wall of Egypt, which extended from the Mediterranean to the Gulf of Suez. Here the Israelites made their third encampment (Ex. 13:20; Num. 33:6). The camp was probably a little to the west of the modern town of Ismailia. Here the Israelites were commanded to change their route (Ex. 14:2), and “turn” towards the south, and encamp before Pi-hahiroth. (See EXODUS; PITHOM.)
Ethan Firm. (1.) “The Ezrahite,” distinguished for his wisdom (1 Kings 4:31). He is named as the author of the 89th Psalm. He was of the tribe of Levi.
(2.) A Levite of the family of Merari, one of the leaders of the temple music (1 Chr. 6:44; 15:17, 19). He was probably the same as Jeduthun. He is supposed by some to be the same also as (1).
Ethanim The month of gifts, i.e., of vintage offerings; called Tisri after the Exile; corresponding to part of September and October. It was the first month of the civil year, and the seventh of the sacred year (1 Kings 8:2).
Eth-baal With Baal, a king of Sidon (B.C. 940-908), father of Jezebel, who was the wife of Ahab (1 Kings 16:31). He is said to have been also a priest of Astarte, whose worship was closely allied to that of Baal, and this may account for his daughter’s zeal in promoting idolatry in Israel. This marriage of Ahab was most fatal to both Israel and Judah. Dido, the founder of Carthage, was his granddaughter.
Ethiopia Country of burnt faces; the Greek word by which the Hebrew Cush is rendered (Gen. 2:13; 2 Kings 19:9; Esther 1:1; Job 28:19; Ps. 68:31; 87:4), a country which lay to the south of Egypt, beginning at Syene on the First Cataract (Ezek. 29:10; 30:6), and extending to beyond the confluence of the White and Blue Nile. It corresponds generally with what is now known as the Soudan (i.e., the land of the blacks). This country was known to the Hebrews, and is described in Isa. 18:1; Zeph. 3:10. They carried on some commercial intercourse with it (Isa. 45:14).
Its inhabitants were descendants of Ham (Gen. 10:6; Jer. 13:23; Isa. 18:2, “scattered and peeled,” A.V.; but in R.V., “tall and smooth”). Herodotus, the Greek historian, describes them as “the tallest and handsomest of men.” They are frequently represented on Egyptian monuments, and they are all of the type of the true negro. As might be expected, the history of this country is interwoven with that of Egypt.
Ethiopia is spoken of in prophecy (Ps. 68:31; 87:4; Isa. 45:14; Ezek. 30:4-9; Dan. 11:43; Nah. 3:8-10; Hab. 3:7; Zeph. 2:12).
Ethiopian eunuch The chief officer or prime minister of state of Candace (q.v.), queen of Ethiopia. He was converted to Christianity through the instrumentality of Philip (Act 8:27). The northern portion of Ethiopia formed the kingdom of Meroe, which for a long period was ruled over by queens, and it was probably from this kingdom that the eunuch came.
Ethiopian woman The wife of Moses (Num. 12:1). It is supposed that Zipporah, Moses’ first wife (Ex. 2:21), was now dead. His marriage of this “woman” descended from Ham gave offence to Aaron and Miriam.
Eunice Happily conquering, the mother of Timothy, a believing Jewess, but married to a Greek (Acts 16:1). She trained her son from his childhood in the knowledge of the Scriptures (2 Tim. 3:15). She was distinguished by her “unfeigned faith.”
Eunuch Literally bed-keeper or chamberlain, and not necessarily in all cases one who was mutilated, although the practice of employing such mutilated persons in Oriental courts was common (2 Kings 9:32; Esther 2:3). The law of Moses excluded them from the congregation (Deut. 23:1). They were common also among the Greeks and Romans. It is said that even to-day there are some in Rome who are employed in singing soprano in the Sistine Chapel. Three classes of eunuchs are mentioned in Matt. 19:12.
Euodias A good journey, a female member of the church at Philippi. She was one who laboured much with Paul in the gospel. He exhorts her to be of one mind with Syntyche (Phil. 4:2). From this it seems they had been at variance with each other.
Euphrates Hebrew, Perath; Assyrian, Purat; Persian cuneiform, Ufratush, whence Greek Euphrates, meaning “sweet water.” The Assyrian name means “the stream,” or “the great stream.” It is generally called in the Bible simply “the river” (Ex. 23:31), or “the great river” (Deut. 1:7).
The Euphrates is first mentioned in Gen. 2:14 as one of the rivers of Paradise. It is next mentioned in connection with the covenant which God entered into with Abraham (15:18), when he promised to his descendants the land from the river of Egypt to the river Euphrates (comp. Deut. 11:24; Josh. 1:4), a covenant promise afterwards fulfilled in the extended conquests of David (2 Sam. 8:2-14; 1 Chr. 18:3; 1 Kings 4:24). It was then the boundary of the kingdom to the north-east. In the ancient history of Assyria, and Babylon, and Egypt many events are recorded in which mention is made of the “great river.” Just as the Nile represented in prophecy the power of Egypt, so the Euphrates represented the Assyrian power (Isa. 8:7; Jer. 2:18).
It is by far the largest and most important of all the rivers of Western Asia. From its source in the Armenian mountains to the Persian Gulf, into which it empties itself, it has a course of about 1,700 miles. It has two sources, (1) the Frat or Kara-su (i.e., “the black river”), which rises 25 miles north-east of Erzeroum; and (2) the Muradchai (i.e., “the river of desire”), which rises near Ararat, on the northern slope of Ala-tagh. At Kebban Maden, 400 miles from the source of the former, and 270 from that of the latter, they meet and form the majestic stream, which is at length joined by the Tigris at Koornah, after which it is called Shat-el-Arab, which runs in a deep and broad stream for above 140 miles to the sea. It is estimated that the alluvium brought down by these rivers encroaches on the sea at the rate of about one mile in thirty years.
Euroclydon South-east billow, the name of the wind which blew in the Adriatic Gulf, and which struck the ship in which Paul was wrecked on the coast of Malta (Acts 27:14; R.V., “Euraquilo,” i.e., north-east wind). It is called a “tempestuous wind,” i.e., as literally rendered, a “typhonic wind,” or a typhoon. It is the modern Gregalia or Levanter. (Comp. Jonah 1:4.)
Eutychus Fortunate, (Acts 20:9-12), a young man of Troas who fell through drowsiness from the open window of the third floor of the house where Paul was preaching, and was “taken up dead.” The lattice-work of the window being open to admit the air, the lad fell out and down to the court below. Paul restored him to life again. (Comp. 1 Kings 17:21; 2 Kings 4:34.)
Evangelist A “publisher of glad tidings;” a missionary preacher of the gospel (Eph. 4:11). This title is applied to Philip (Acts 21:8), who appears to have gone from city to city preaching the word (8:4, 40). Judging from the case of Philip, evangelists had neither the authority of an apostle, nor the gift of prophecy, nor the responsibility of pastoral supervision over a portion of the flock. They were itinerant preachers, having it as their special function to carry the gospel to places where it was previously unknown. The writers of the four Gospels are known as the Evangelists.
Eve Life; living, the name given by Adam to his wife (Gen. 3:20; 4:1). The account of her creation is given in Gen. 2:21, 22. The Creator, by declaring that it was not good for man to be alone, and by creating for him a suitable companion, gave sanction to monogamy. The commentator Matthew Henry says: “This companion was taken from his side to signify that she was to be dear unto him as his own flesh. Not from his head, lest she should rule over him; nor from his feet, lest he should tyrannize over her; but from his side, to denote that species of equality which is to subsist in the marriage state.” And again, “That wife that is of God’s making by special grace, and of God’s bringing by special providence, is likely to prove a helpmeet to her husband.” Through the subtle temptation of the serpent she violated the commandment of God by taking of the forbidden fruit, which she gave also unto her husband (1 Tim. 2:13-15; 2 Cor. 11:3). When she gave birth to her first son, she said, “I have gotten a man from the Lord” (R.V., “I have gotten a man with the help of the Lord,” Gen. 4:1). Thus she welcomed Cain, as some think, as if he had been the Promised One the “Seed of the woman.”
Evening The period following sunset with which the Jewish day began (Gen. 1:5; Mark 13:35). The Hebrews reckoned two evenings of each day, as appears from Ex. 16:12: 30:8; 12:6 (marg.); Lev. 23:5 (marg. R.V., “between the two evenings”). The “first evening” was that period when the sun was verging towards setting, and the “second evening” the moment of actual sunset. The word “evenings” in Jer. 5:6 should be “deserts” (marg. R.V.).
Everlasting Eternal, applied to God (Gen. 21:33; Deut. 33:27; Ps. 41:13; 90:2). We also read of the “everlasting hills” (Gen. 49:26); an “everlasting priesthood” (Ex. 40:15; Num. 25:13). (See ETERNAL.)
Evil eye (Prov. 23:6), figuratively, the envious or covetous. (Comp. Deut. 15:9; Matt. 20:15.)
Evil-merodach Merodach’s man, the son and successor of Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon (2 Kings 25:27; Jer. 52:31, 34). He seems to have reigned but two years (B.C. 562-560). Influenced probably by Daniel, he showed kindness to Jehoiachin, who had been a prisoner in Babylon for thirty-seven years. He released him, and “spoke kindly to him.” He was murdered by Nergal-sharezer=Neriglissar, his brother-in-law, who succeeded him (Jer. 39:3, 13).
Evil-speaking Is expressly forbidden (Titus 3:2; James 4:11), and severe punishments are denounced against it (1 Cor. 5:11; 6:10). It is spoken of also with abhorrence (Ps. 15:3; Prov. 18:6, 7), and is foreign to the whole Christian character and the example of Christ.
Example Of Christ (1 Pet. 2:21; John 13:15); of pastors to their flocks (Phil. 3:17; 2 Thess. 3:9; 1 Tim. 4:12; 1 Pet. 5:3); of the Jews as a warning (Heb. 4:11); of the prophets as suffering affliction (James 5:10).
Executioner (Mark 6:27). Instead of the Greek word, Mark here uses a Latin word, speculator, which literally means “a scout,” “a spy,” and at length came to denote one of the armed bodyguard of the emperor. Herod Antipas, in imitation of the emperor, had in attendance on him a company of speculatores. They were sometimes employed as executioners, but this was a mere accident of their office. (See MARK, GOSPEL OF.)
Exercise, bodily (1 Tim. 4:8). An ascetic mortification of the flesh and denial of personal gratification (comp. Col. 2:23) to which some sects of the Jews, especially the Essenes, attached importance.
Exile (1.) Of the kingdom of Israel. In the time of Pekah, Tiglath-pileser II. carried away captive into Assyria (2 Kings 15:29; comp. Isa. 10:5, 6) a part of the inhabitants of Galilee and of Gilead (B.C. 741).
After the destruction of Samaria (B.C. 720) by Shalmaneser and Sargon (q.v.), there was a general deportation of the Israelites into Mesopotamia and Media (2 Kings 17:6; 18:9; 1 Chr. 5:26). (See ISRAEL, KINGDOM OF.)
(2.) Of the kingdom of the two tribes, the kingdom of Judah. Nebuchadnezzar, in the fourth year of Jehoiakim (Jer. 25:1), invaded Judah, and carried away some royal youths, including Daniel and his companions (B.C. 606), together with the sacred vessels of the temple (2 Chr. 36:7; Dan. 1:2). In B.C. 598 (Jer. 52:28; 2 Kings 24:12), in the beginning of Jehoiachin’s reign (2 Kings 24:8), Nebuchadnezzar carried away captive 3,023 eminent Jews, including the king (2 Chr. 36:10), with his family and officers (2 Kings 24:12), and a large number of warriors (16), with very many persons of note (14), and artisans (16), leaving behind only those who were poor and helpless. This was the first general deportation to Babylon.
In B.C. 588, after the revolt of Zedekiah (q.v.), there was a second general deportation of Jews by Nebuchadnezzar (Jer. 52:29; 2 Kings 25:8), including 832 more of the principal men of the kingdom. He carried away also the rest of the sacred vessels (2 Chr. 36:18). From this period, when the temple was destroyed (2 Kings 25:9), to the complete restoration, B.C. 517 (Ezra 6:15), is the period of the “seventy years.”
In B.C. 582 occurred the last and final deportation. The entire number Nebuchadnezzar carried captive was 4,600 heads of families with their wives and children and dependants (Jer. 52:30; 43:5-7; 2 Chr. 36:20, etc.). Thus the exiles formed a very considerable community in Babylon.
When Cyrus granted permission to the Jews to return to their own land (Ezra 1:5; 7:13), only a comparatively small number at first availed themselves of the privilege. It cannot be questioned that many belonging to the kingdom of Israel ultimately joined the Jews under Ezra, Zerubbabel, and Nehemiah, and returned along with them to Jerusalem (Jer. 50:4, 5, 17-20, 33-35).
Large numbers had, however, settled in the land of Babylon, and formed numerous colonies in different parts of the kingdom. Their descendants very probably have spread far into Eastern lands and become absorbed in the general population. (See JUDAH, KINGDOM OF; CAPTIVITY.)
Exodus The great deliverance wrought for the children of Isreal when they were brought out of the land of Egypt with “a mighty hand and with an outstretched arm” (Ex 12:51; Deut. 26:8; Ps 114; 136), about B.C. 1490, and four hundred and eighty years (1 Kings 6:1) before the building of Solomon’s temple.
The time of their sojourning in Egypt was, according to Ex. 12:40, the space of four hundred and thirty years. In the LXX., the words are, “The sojourning of the children of Israel which they sojourned in Egypt and in the land of Canaan was four hundred and thirty years;” and the Samaritan version reads, “The sojourning of the children of Israel and of their fathers which they sojourned in the land of Canaan and in the land of Egypt was four hundred and thirty years.” In Gen. 15:13-16, the period is prophetically given (in round numbers) as four hundred years. This passage is quoted by Stephen in his defence before the council (Acts 7:6).
The chronology of the “sojourning” is variously estimated. Those who adopt the longer term reckon thus:
| Years | | From the descent of Jacob into Egypt to the | death of Joseph 71 | | From the death of Joseph to the birth of | Moses 278 | | From the birth of Moses to his flight into | Midian 40 | | From the flight of Moses to his return into | Egypt 40 | | From the return of Moses to the Exodus 1 | | 430
Others contend for the shorter period of two hundred and fifteen years, holding that the period of four hundred and thirty years comprehends the years from the entrance of Abraham into Canaan (see LXX. and Samaritan) to the descent of Jacob into Egypt. They reckon thus:
| Years | | From Abraham’s arrival in Canaan to Isaac’s | birth 25 | | From Isaac’s birth to that of his twin sons | Esau and Jacob 60 | | From Jacob’s birth to the going down into | Egypt 130 | | (215) | | From Jacob’s going down into Egypt to the | death of Joseph 71 | | From death of Joseph to the birth of Moses 64 | | From birth of Moses to the Exodus 80 | | In all… 430
During the forty years of Moses’ sojourn in the land of Midian, the Hebrews in Egypt were being gradually prepared for the great national crisis which was approaching. The plagues that successively fell upon the land loosened the bonds by which Pharaoh held them in slavery, and at length he was eager that they should depart. But the Hebrews must now also be ready to go. They were poor; for generations they had laboured for the Egyptians without wages. They asked gifts from their neighbours around them (Ex. 12:35), and these were readily bestowed. And then, as the first step towards their independent national organization, they observed the feast of the Passover, which was now instituted as a perpetual memorial. The blood of the paschal lamb was duly sprinkled on the door-posts and lintels of all their houses, and they were all within, waiting the next movement in the working out of God’s plan. At length the last stroke fell on the land of Egypt. “It came to pass, that at midnight Jehovah smote all the firstborn in the land of Egypt.” Pharaoh rose up in the night, and called for Moses and Aaron by night, and said, “Rise up, and get you forth from among my people, both ye and the children of Israel; and go, serve Jehovah, as ye have said. Also take your flocks and your herds, as ye have said, and be gone; and bless me also.” Thus was Pharaoh (q.v.) completely humbled and broken down. These words he spoke to Moses and Aaron “seem to gleam through the tears of the humbled king, as he lamented his son snatched from him by so sudden a death, and tremble with a sense of the helplessness which his proud soul at last felt when the avenging hand of God had visited even his palace.”
The terror-stricken Egyptians now urged the instant departure of the Hebrews. In the midst of the Passover feast, before the dawn of the 15th day of the month Abib (our April nearly), which was to be to them henceforth the beginning of the year, as it was the commencement of a new epoch in their history, every family, with all that appertained to it, was ready for the march, which instantly began under the leadership of the heads of tribes with their various sub-divisions. They moved onward, increasing as they went forward from all the districts of Goshen, over the whole of which they were scattered, to the common centre. Three or four days perhaps elapsed before the whole body of the people were assembled at Rameses, and ready to set out under their leader Moses (Ex. 12:37; Num. 33:3). This city was at that time the residence of the Egyptian court, and here the interviews between Moses and Pharaoh had taken place.
From Rameses they journeyed to Succoth (Ex. 12:37), identified with Tel-el-Maskhuta, about 12 miles west of Ismailia. (See PITHOM.) Their third station was Etham (q.v.), 13:20, “in the edge of the wilderness,” and was probably a little to the west of the modern town of Ismailia, on the Suez Canal. Here they were commanded “to turn and encamp before Pi-hahiroth, between Migdol and the sea”, i.e., to change their route from east to due south. The Lord now assumed the direction of their march in the pillar of cloud by day and of fire by night. They were then led along the west shore of the Red Sea till they came to an extensive camping-ground “before Pi-hahiroth,” about 40 miles from Etham. This distance from Etham may have taken three days to traverse, for the number of camping-places by no means indicates the number of days spent on the journey: e.g., it took fully a month to travel from Rameses to the wilderness of Sin (Ex. 16:1), yet reference is made to only six camping-places during all that time. The exact spot of their encampment before they crossed the Red Sea cannot be determined. It was probably somewhere near the present site of Suez.
Under the direction of God the children of Israel went “forward” from the camp “before Pi-hahiroth,” and the sea opened a pathway for them, so that they crossed to the farther shore in safety. The Egyptian host pursued after them, and, attempting to follow through the sea, were overwhelmed in its returning waters, and thus the whole military force of the Egyptians perished. They “sank as lead in the mighty waters” (Ex. 15:1-9; comp. Ps. 77:16-19).
Having reached the eastern shore of the sea, perhaps a little way to the north of Ayun Musa (“the springs of Moses”), there they encamped and rested probably for a day. Here Miriam and the other women sang the triumphal song recorded in Ex. 15:1-21.
From Ayun Musa they went on for three days through a part of the barren “wilderness of Shur” (22), called also the “wilderness of Etham” (Num. 33:8; comp. Ex. 13:20), without finding water. On the last of these days they came to Marah (q.v.), where the “bitter” water was by a miracle made drinkable.
Their next camping-place was Elim (q.v.), where were twelve springs of water and a grove of “threescore and ten” palm trees (Ex. 15:27).
After a time the children of Israel “took their journey from Elim,” and encamped by the Red Sea (Num. 33:10), and thence removed to the “wilderness of Sin” (to be distinguished from the wilderness of Zin, 20:1), where they again encamped. Here, probably the modern el-Markha, the supply of bread they had brought with them out of Egypt failed. They began to “murmur” for want of bread. God “heard their murmurings” and gave them quails and manna, “bread from heaven” (Ex. 16:4-36). Moses directed that an omer of manna should be put aside and preserved as a perpetual memorial of God’s goodness. They now turned inland, and after three encampments came to the rich and fertile valley of Rephidim, in the Wady Feiran. Here they found no water, and again murmured against Moses. Directed by God, Moses procured a miraculous supply of water from the “rock in Horeb,” one of the hills of the Sinai group (17:1-7); and shortly afterwards the children of Israel here fought their first battle with the Amalekites, whom they smote with the edge of the sword.
From the eastern extremity of the Wady Feiran the line of march now probably led through the Wady esh-Sheikh and the Wady Solaf, meeting in the Wady er-Rahah, “the enclosed plain in front of the magnificient cliffs of Ras Sufsafeh.” Here they encamped for more than a year (Num. 1:1; 10:11) before Sinai (q.v.).
The different encampments of the children of Israel, from the time of their leaving Egypt till they reached the Promised Land, are mentioned in Ex. 12:37-19; Num. 10-21; 33; Deut. 1, 2, 10.
It is worthy of notice that there are unmistakable evidences that the Egyptians had a tradition of a great exodus from their country, which could be none other than the exodus of the Hebrews.
Exodus, Book of Exodus is the name given in the LXX. to the second book of the Pentateuch (q.v.). It means “departure” or “outgoing.” This name was adopted in the Latin translation, and thence passed into other languages. The Hebrews called it by the first words, according to their custom, Ve-eleh shemoth (i.e., “and these are the names”).
It contains, (1.) An account of the increase and growth of the Israelites in Egypt (ch. 1) (2.) Preparations for their departure out of Egypt (2-12:36). (3.) Their journeyings from Egypt to Sinai (12:37-19:2). (4.) The giving of the law and the establishment of the institutions by which the organization of the people was completed, the theocracy, “a kingdom of priest and an holy nation” (19:3-ch. 40).
The time comprised in this book, from the death of Joseph to the erection of the tabernacle in the wilderness, is about one hundred and forty-five years, on the supposition that the four hundred and thirty years (12:40) are to be computed from the time of the promises made to Abraham (Gal. 3:17).
The authorship of this book, as well as of that of the other books of the Pentateuch, is to be ascribed to Moses. The unanimous voice of tradition and all internal evidences abundantly support this opinion.
Exorcist (Acts 19:13). “In that sceptical and therefore superstitious age professional exorcist abounded. Many of these professional exorcists were disreputable Jews, like Simon in Samaria and Elymas in Cyprus (8:9; 13:6).” Other references to exorcism as practised by the Jews are found in Matt. 12:27; Mark 9:38; Luke 9:49, 50. It would seem that it was an opinion among the Jews that miracles might be wrought by invoking the divine name. Thus also these “vagabond Jews” pretended that they could expel daemons.
The power of casting out devils was conferred by Christ on his apostles (Matt. 10:8), and on the seventy (Luke 10:17-19), and was exercised by believers after his ascension (Mark 16:17; Acts 16:18); but this power was never spoken of as exorcism.
Expiation Guilt is said to be expiated when it is visited with punishment falling on a substitute. Expiation is made for our sins when they are punished not in ourselves but in another who consents to stand in our room. It is that by which reconciliation is effected. Sin is thus said to be “covered” by vicarious satisfaction.
The cover or lid of the ark is termed in the LXX. hilasterion, that which covered or shut out the claims and demands of the law against the sins of God’s people, whereby he became “propitious” to them.
The idea of vicarious expiation runs through the whole Old Testament system of sacrifices. (See PROPITIATION.)
Eye (Heb. ain, meaning “flowing”), applied (1) to a fountain, frequently; (2) to colour (Num. 11:7; R.V., “appearance,” marg. “eye”); (3) the face (Ex. 10:5, 15; Num. 22:5, 11), in Num. 14:14, “face to face” (R.V. marg., “eye to eye”). “Between the eyes”, i.e., the forehead (Ex. 13:9, 16).
The expression (Prov. 23:31), “when it giveth his colour in the cup,” is literally, “when it giveth out [or showeth] its eye.” The beads or bubbles of wine are thus spoken of. “To set the eyes” on any one is to view him with favour (Gen. 44:21; Job 24:23; Jer. 39:12). This word is used figuratively in the expressions an “evil eye” (Matt. 20:15), a “bountiful eye” (Prov. 22:9), “haughty eyes” (6:17 marg.), “wanton eyes” (Isa. 3:16), “eyes full of adultery” (2 Pet. 2:14), “the lust of the eyes” (1 John 2:16). Christians are warned against “eye-service” (Eph. 6:6; Col. 3:22). Men were sometimes punished by having their eyes put out (1 Sam. 11:2; Samson, Judg. 16:21; Zedekiah, 2 Kings 25:7).
The custom of painting the eyes is alluded to in 2 Kings 9:30, R.V.; Jer. 4:30; Ezek. 23:40, a custom which still prevails extensively among Eastern women.
Ezekias Grecized form of Hezekiah (Matt. 1:9, 10).
Ezekiel God will strengthen. (1.) 1 Chr. 24:16, “Jehezekel.”
(2.) One of the great prophets, the son of Buzi the priest (Ezek. 1:3). He was one of the Jewish exiles who settled at Tel-Abib, on the banks of the Chebar, “in the land of the Chaldeans.” He was probably carried away captive with Jehoiachin (1:2; 2 Kings 24:14-16) about B.C. 597. His prophetic call came to him “in the fifth year of Jehoiachin’s captivity” (B.C. 594). He had a house in the place of his exile, where he lost his wife, in the ninth year of his exile, by some sudden and unforeseen stroke (Ezek. 8:1; 24:18). He held a prominent place among the exiles, and was frequently consulted by the elders (8:1; 11:25; 14:1; 20:1). His ministry extended over twenty-three years (29:17), B.C. 595-573, during part of which he was contemporary with Daniel (14:14; 28:3) and Jeremiah, and probably also with Obadiah. The time and manner of his death are unknown. His reputed tomb is pointed out in the neighbourhood of Bagdad, at a place called Keffil.
Ezekiel, Book of Consists mainly of three groups of prophecies. After an account of his call to the prophetical office (1-3:21), Ezekiel (1) utters words of denunciation against the Jews (3:22-24), warning them of the certain destruction of Jerusalem, in opposition to the words of the false prophets (4:1-3). The symbolical acts, by which the extremities to which Jerusalem would be reduced are described in ch. 4, 5, show his intimate acquaintance with the Levitical legislation. (See Ex. 22:30; Deut. 14:21; Lev. 5:2; 7:18, 24; 17:15; 19:7; 22:8, etc.)
(2.) Prophecies against various surrounding nations: against the Ammonites (Ezek. 25:1-7), the Moabites (8-11), the Edomites (12-14), the Philistines (15-17), Tyre and Sidon (26-28), and against Egypt (29-32).
(3.) Prophecies delivered after the destruction of Jerusalem by Nebuchadnezzar: the triumphs of Israel and of the kingdom of God on earth (Ezek. 33-39); Messianic times, and the establishment and prosperity of the kingdom of God (40;48).
The closing visions of this book are referred to in the book of Revelation (Ezek. 38=Rev. 20:8; Ezek. 47:1-8=Rev. 22:1,2). Other references to this book are also found in the New Testament. (Comp. Rom. 2:24 with Ezek. 36:2; Rom. 10:5, Gal. 3:12 with Ezek. 20:11; 2 Pet. 3:4 with Ezek. 12:22.)
It may be noted that Daniel, fourteen years after his deportation from Jerusalem, is mentioned by Ezekiel (14:14) along with Noah and Job as distinguished for his righteousness, and some five years later he is spoken of as pre-eminent for his wisdom (28:3).
Ezekiel’s prophecies are characterized by symbolical and allegorical representations, “unfolding a rich series of majestic visions and of colossal symbols.” There are a great many also of “symbolcal actions embodying vivid conceptions on the part of the prophet” (4:1-4; 5:1-4; 12:3-6; 24:3-5; 37:16, etc.) “The mode of representation, in which symbols and allegories occupy a prominent place, gives a dark, mysterious character to the prophecies of Ezekiel. They are obscure and enigmatical. A cloudy mystery overhangs them which it is almost impossible to penetrate. Jerome calls the book a labyrith of the mysteries of God.’ It was because of this obscurity that the Jews forbade any one to read it till he had attained the age of thirty.”
Ezekiel is singular in the frequency with which he refers to the Pentateuch (e.g., Ezek. 27; 28:13; 31:8; 36:11, 34; 47:13, etc.). He shows also an acquaintance with the writings of Hosea (Ezek. 37:22), Isaiah (Ezek. 8:12; 29:6), and especially with those of Jeremiah, his older contemporary (Jer. 24:7, 9; 48:37).
Ezel A separation, (1 Sam. 20:19), a stone, or heap of stones, in the neighbourhood of Saul’s residence, the scene of the parting of David and Jonathan (42). The margin of the Authorized Version reads, “The stone that sheweth the way,” in this rendering following the Targum.
Ezer Treasure. (1.) One of the sons of Seir, the native princes, “dukes,” of Mount Hor (Gen. 36:21, 27). (2.) 1 Chr. 7:21; (3.) 4:4. (4.) One of the Gadite champions who repaired to David at Ziklag (12:9). (5.) A Levite (Neh. 3:19). (6.) A priest (12:42).
Ezion-geber The giant’s backbone (so called from the head of a mountain which runs out into the sea), an ancient city and harbour at the north-east end of the Elanitic branch of the Red Sea, the Gulf of Akabah, near Elath or Eloth (Num. 33:35; Deut. 2:8). Here Solomon built ships, “Tarshish ships,” like those trading from Tyre to Tarshish and the west, which traded with Ophir (1 Kings 9:26; 2 Chr. 8:17); and here also Jehoshaphat’s fleet was shipwrecked (1 Kings 22:48; 2 Chr. 20:36). It became a populous town, many of the Jews settling in it (2 Kings 16:6, “Elath”). It is supposed that anciently the north end of the gulf flowed further into the country than now, as far as Ain el-Ghudyan, which is 10 miles up the dry bed of the Arabah, and that Ezion-geber may have been there.
Ezra Help. (1.) A priest among those that returned to Jerusalem under Zerubabel (Neh. 12:1).
(2.) The “scribe” who led the second body of exiles that returned from Babylon to Jerusalem B.C. 459, and author of the book of Scripture which bears his name. He was the son, or perhaps grandson, of Seraiah (2 Kings 25:18-21), and a lineal descendant of Phinehas, the son of Aaron (Ezra 7:1-5). All we know of his personal history is contained in the last four chapters of his book, and in Neh. 8 and 12:26.
In the seventh year of the reign of Artaxerxes Longimanus (see DARIUS), he obtained leave to go up to Jerusalem and to take with him a company of Israelites (Ezra 8). Artaxerxes manifested great interest in Ezra’s undertaking, granting him “all his request,” and loading him with gifts for the house of God. Ezra assembled the band of exiles, probably about 5,000 in all, who were prepared to go up with him to Jerusalem, on the banks of the Ahava, where they rested for three days, and were put into order for their march across the desert, which was completed in four months. His proceedings at Jerusalem on his arrival there are recorded in his book.
He was “a ready scribe in the law of Moses,” who “had prepared his heart to seek the law of the Lord and to do it, and to teach in Israel statutes and judgments.” “He is,” says Professor Binnie, “the first well-defined example of an order of men who have never since ceased in the church; men of sacred erudition, who devote their lives to the study of the Holy Scriptures, in order that they may be in a condition to interpret them for the instruction and edification of the church. It is significant that the earliest mention of the pulpit occurs in the history of Ezra’s ministry (Neh. 8:4). He was much more of a teacher than a priest. We learn from the account of his labours in the book of Nehemiah that he was careful to have the whole people instructed in the law of Moses; and there is no reason to reject the constant tradition of the Jews which connects his name with the collecting and editing of the Old Testament canon. The final completion of the canon may have been, and probably was, the work of a later generation; but Ezra seems to have put it much into the shape in which it is still found in the Hebrew Bible. When it is added that the complete organization of the synagogue dates from this period, it will be seen that the age was emphatically one of Biblical study” (The Psalms: their History, etc.).
For about fourteen years, i.e., till B.C. 445, we have no record of what went on in Jerusalem after Ezra had set in order the ecclesiastical and civil affairs of the nation. In that year another distinguished personage, Nehemiah, appears on the scene. After the ruined wall of the city had been built by Nehemiah, there was a great gathering of the people at Jerusalem preparatory to the dedication of the wall. On the appointed day the whole population assembled, and the law was read aloud to them by Ezra and his assistants (Neh. 8:3). The remarkable scene is described in detail. There was a great religious awakening. For successive days they held solemn assemblies, confessing their sins and offering up solemn sacrifices. They kept also the feast of Tabernacles with great solemnity and joyous enthusiasm, and then renewed their national covenant to be the Lord’s. Abuses were rectified, and arrangements for the temple service completed, and now nothing remained but the dedication of the walls of the city (Neh. 12).
Ezra, Book of This book is the record of events occurring at the close of the Babylonian exile. It was at one time included in Nehemiah, the Jews regarding them as one volume. The two are still distinguished in the Vulgate version as I. and II. Esdras. It consists of two principal divisions:
(1.) The history of the first return of exiles, in the first year of Cyrus (B.C. 536), till the completion and dedication of the new temple, in the sixth year of Darius Hystapes (B.C. 515), ch. 1-6. From the close of the sixth to the opening of the seventh chapter there is a blank in the history of about sixty years.
(2.) The history of the second return under Ezra, in the seventh year of Artaxerxes Longimanus, and of the events that took place at Jerusalem after Ezra’s arrival there (7-10).
The book thus contains memorabilia connected with the Jews, from the decree of Cyrus (B.C. 536) to the reformation by Ezra (B.C. 456), extending over a period of about eighty years.
There is no quotation from this book in the New Testament, but there never has been any doubt about its being canonical. Ezra was probably the author of this book, at least of the greater part of it (comp. 7:27, 28; 8:1, etc.), as he was also of the Books of Chronicles, the close of which forms the opening passage of Ezra.
Ezrahite A title given to Ethan (1 Kings 4:31; Ps. 89, title) and Heman (Ps. 88, title). They were both sons of Zerah (1 Chr. 2:6).
Ezri Help of Jehovah, the son of Chelub. He superintended, under David, those who “did the work of the field for tillage” (1 Chr. 27:26).