Easton's Bible Dictionary
Sabachthani — Semei
the transliteration of the Hebrew word tsebha'oth , meaning "hosts," "armies" ( Romans 9:29 ; James 5:4 ). In the LXX. the Hebrew word is rendered by "Almighty." (See Revelation 4:8 ; Compare Isaiah 6:3 .) It may designate Jehovah as either (1) God of the armies of earth, or (2) God of the armies of the stars, or (3) God of the unseen armies of angels; or perhaps it may include all these ideas.
(Heb. verb shabbath, meaning "to rest from labour"), the day of rest. It is first mentioned as having been instituted in Paradise, when man was in innocence ( Genesis 2:2 ). "The sabbath was made for man," as a day of rest and refreshment for the body and of blessing to the soul.
It is next referred to in connection with the gift of manna to the children of Israel in the wilderness ( Exodus 16:23 ); and afterwards, when the law was given from Sinai ( 20:11 ), the people were solemnly charged to "remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy." Thus it is spoken of as an institution already existing.
In the subsequent history of the Jews frequent references are made to the sanctity of the Sabbath ( Isaiah 56:2 Isaiah 56:4 Isaiah 56:6 Isaiah 56:7 ; Isaiah 58:13 Isaiah 58:14 ; Jeremiah 17:20-22 ; Nehemiah 13:19 ). In later times they perverted the Sabbath by their traditions. Our Lord rescued it from their perversions, and recalled to them its true nature and intent ( Matthew 12:10-13 ; Mark 2:27 ; Luke 13:10-17 ).
The Sabbath, originally instituted for man at his creation, is of permanent and universal obligation. The physical necessities of man require a Sabbath of rest. He is so constituted that his bodily welfare needs at least one day in seven for rest from ordinary labour. Experience also proves that the moral and spiritual necessities of men also demand a Sabbath of rest. "I am more and more sure by experience that the reason for the observance of the Sabbath lies deep in the everlasting necessities of human nature, and that as long as man is man the blessedness of keeping it, not as a day of rest only, but as a day of spiritual rest, will never be annulled. I certainly do feel by experience the eternal obligation, because of the eternal necessity, of the Sabbath. The soul withers without it. It thrives in proportion to its observance. The Sabbath was made for man. God made it for men in a certain spiritual state because they needed it. The need, therefore, is deeply hidden in human nature. He who can dispense with it must be holy and spiritual indeed. And he who, still unholy and unspiritual, would yet dispense with it is a man that would fain be wiser than his Maker" (F. W. Robertson).
The ancient Babylonian calendar, as seen from recently recovered inscriptions on the bricks among the ruins of the royal palace, was based on the division of time into weeks of seven days. The Sabbath is in these inscriptions designated Sabattu, and defined as "a day of rest for the heart" and "a day of completion of labour."
The change of the day. Originally at creation the seventh day of the week was set apart and consecrated as the Sabbath. The first day of the week is now observed as the Sabbath. Has God authorized this change? There is an obvious distinction between the Sabbath as an institution and the particular day set apart for its observance. The question, therefore, as to the change of the day in no way affects the perpetual obligation of the Sabbath as an institution. Change of the day or no change, the Sabbath remains as a sacred institution the same. It cannot be abrogated.
If any change of the day has been made, it must have been by Christ or by his authority. Christ has a right to make such a change ( Mark 2:23-28 ). As Creator, Christ was the original Lord of the Sabbath ( John 1:3 ; Hebrews 1:10 ). It was originally a memorial of creation. A work vastly greater than that of creation has now been accomplished by him, the work of redemption. We would naturally expect just such a change as would make the Sabbath a memorial of that greater work.
True, we can give no text authorizing the change in so many words. We have no express law declaring the change. But there are evidences of another kind. We know for a fact that the first day of the week has been observed from apostolic times, and the necessary conclusion is, that it was observed by the apostles and their immediate disciples. This, we may be sure, they never would have done without the permission or the authority of their Lord.
After his resurrection, which took place on the first day of the week ( Matthew 28:1 ; Mark 16:2 ; Luke 24:1 ; John 20:1 ), we never find Christ meeting with his disciples on the seventh day. But he specially honoured the first day by manifesting himself to them on four separate occasions ( Matthew 28:9 ; Luke 24:34 Luke 24:18-33 ; John 20:19-23 ). Again, on the next first day of the week, Jesus appeared to his disciples ( John 20:26 ).
Some have calculated that Christ's ascension took place on the first day of the week. And there can be no doubt that the descent of the Holy Ghost at Pentecost was on that day ( Acts 2:1 ). Thus Christ appears as instituting a new day to be observed by his people as the Sabbath, a day to be henceforth known amongst them as the "Lord's day." The observance of this "Lord's day" as the Sabbath was the general custom of the primitive churches, and must have had apostolic sanction (Compare Acts 20:3-7 ; 1 Corinthians 16:1 1 Corinthians 16:2 ) and authority, and so the sanction and authority of Jesus Christ.
The words "at her sabbaths" ( Lamentations 1:7 , A.V.) ought probably to be, as in the Revised Version, "at her desolations."
supposed to be a distance of 2,000 cubits, or less than half-a-mile, the distance to which, according to Jewish tradition, it was allowable to travel on the Sabbath day without violating the law ( Acts 1:12 ; Compare Exodus 16:29 ; Numbers 35:5 ; Joshua 3:4 ).
every seventh year, during which the land, according to the law of Moses, had to remain uncultivated ( Leviticus 25:2-7 ; Compare Exodus 23:10 Exodus 23:11 Exodus 23:12 ; Leviticus 26:34 Leviticus 26:35 ). Whatever grew of itself during that year was not for the owner of the land, but for the poor and the stranger and the beasts of the field. All debts, except those of foreigners, were to be remitted ( Deuteronomy 15:1-11 ). There is little notice of the observance of this year in Biblical history. It appears to have been much neglected ( 2 Chronicles 36:20 2 Chronicles 36:21 ).
descendants of Seba ( Genesis 10:7 ); Africans ( Isaiah 43:3 ). They were "men of stature," and engaged in merchandise ( Isaiah 45:14 ). Their conversion to the Lord was predicted ( Psalms 72:10 ). This word, in Ezekiel 23:42 , should be read, as in the margin of the Authorized Version, and in the Revised Version, "drunkards." Another tribe, apparently given to war, is mentioned in Job 1:15 .
the fifth son of Cush (id.).
2. A son of Obed-edom the Gittite, and a temple porter ( 1 Chronicles 26:4 ).
cloth made of black goats' hair, coarse, rough, and thick, used for sacks, and also worn by mourners ( Genesis 37:34 ; 42:25 ; 2 Sam. 3:31 ; Esther 4:1 Esther 4:2 ; Psalms 30:11 , etc.), and as a sign of repentance ( Matthew 11:21 ). It was put upon animals by the people of Nineveh ( Jonah 3:8 ).
The offering up of sacrifices is to be regarded as a divine institution. It did not originate with man. God himself appointed it as the mode in which acceptable worship was to be offered to him by guilty man. The language and the idea of sacrifice pervade the whole Bible.
Sacrifices were offered in the ante-diluvian age. The Lord clothed Adam and Eve with the skins of animals, which in all probability had been offered in sacrifice ( Genesis 3:21 ). Abel offered a sacrifice "of the firstlings of his flock" ( 4:4 ; Hebrews 11:4 ). A distinction also was made between clean and unclean animals, which there is every reason to believe had reference to the offering up of sacrifices ( Genesis 7:2 Genesis 7:8 ), because animals were not given to man as food till after the Flood.
The same practice is continued down through the patriarchal age ( Genesis 8:20 ; 12:7 ; Genesis 13:4 Genesis 13:18 ; 15:9-11 ; 22:1-18 , etc.). In the Mosaic period of Old Testament history definite laws were prescribed by God regarding the different kinds of sacrifices that were to be offered and the manner in which the offering was to be made. The offering of stated sacrifices became indeed a prominent and distinctive feature of the whole period ( Exodus 12:3-27 ; Leviticus 23:5-8 ; Numbers 9:2-14 ). (See ALTAR .)
We learn from the Epistle to the Hebrews that sacrifices had in themselves no value or efficacy. They were only the "shadow of good things to come," and pointed the worshippers forward to the coming of the great High Priest, who, in the fullness of the time, "was offered once for all to bear the sin of many." Sacrifices belonged to a temporary economy, to a system of types and emblems which served their purposes and have now passed away. The "one sacrifice for sins" hath "perfected for ever them that are sanctified."
Sacrifices were of two kinds: 1. Unbloody, such as (1) first-fruits and tithes; (2) meat and drink-offerings; and (3) incense. 2. Bloody, such as (1) burnt-offerings; (2) peace-offerings; and (3) sin and trespass offerings. (See OFFERINGS .)
The origin of this Jewish sect cannot definitely be traced. It was probably the outcome of the influence of Grecian customs and philosophy during the period of Greek domination. The first time they are met with is in connection with John the Baptist's ministry. They came out to him when on the banks of the Jordan, and he said to them, "O generation of vipers, who hath warned you to flee from the wrath to come?" ( Matthew 3:7 .) The next time they are spoken of they are represented as coming to our Lord tempting him. He calls them "hypocrites" and "a wicked and adulterous generation" ( Matthew 16:1-4 ; 22:23 ). The only reference to them in the Gospels of ( Mark 12:18-27 ) and ( Luke 20:27-38 ) is their attempting to ridicule the doctrine of the resurrection, which they denied, as they also denied the existence of angels. They are never mentioned in John's Gospel.
There were many Sadducees among the "elders" of the Sanhedrin. They seem, indeed, to have been as numerous as the Pharisees ( Acts 23:6 ). They showed their hatred of Jesus in taking part in his condemnation ( Matthew 16:21 ; Matthew 26:1-3 Matthew 26:59 ; Mark 8:31 ; 15:1 ; Luke 9:22 ; 22:66 ). They endeavoured to prohibit the apostles from preaching the resurrection of Christ ( Acts 2:24 Acts 2:31 Acts 2:32 ; Acts 4:1 Acts 4:2 ; Acts 5:17 Acts 5:24-28 ). They were the deists or sceptics of that age. They do not appear as a separate sect after the destruction of Jerusalem.
just, mentioned in the genealogy of our Lord ( Matthew 1:14 ).
Heb. karkom, Arab. zafran (i.e., "yellow"), mentioned only in Cant Matthew 4:13 Matthew 4:14 ; the Crocus sativus. Many species of the crocus are found in Palestine. The pistils and stigmata, from the centre of its flowers, are pressed into "saffron cakes," common in the East. "We found," says Tristram, "saffron a very useful condiment in travelling cookery, a very small pinch of it giving not only a rich yellow colour but an agreable flavour to a dish of rice or to an insipid stew."
This word is also used of the holy dead ( Matthew 27:52 ; Revelation 18:24 ). It was not used as a distinctive title of the apostles and evangelists and of a "spiritual nobility" till the fourth century. In that sense it is not a scriptural title.
a city on the south-east coast of Cyprus ( Acts 13:5 ), where Saul and Barnabas, on their first missionary journey, preached the word in one of the Jewish synagogues, of which there seem to have been several in that place. It is now called Famagusta.
whom I asked of God, the son of Jeconiah ( Matthew 1:12 ; 1 Chronicles 3:17 ); also called the son of Neri ( Luke 3:27 ). The probable explanation of the apparent discrepancy is that he was the son of Neri, the descendant of Nathan, and thus heir to the throne of David on the death of Jeconiah (Compare Jeremiah 22:30 ).
peaceful, a place near AEnon (q.v.), on the west of Jordan, where John baptized ( John 3:23 ). It was probably the Shalem mentioned in Genesis 33:18 , about 7 miles south of AEnon, at the head of the great Wady Far'ah, which formed the northern boundary of Judea in the Jordan valley.
1. A Benjamite ( Nehemiah 11:8 ).
2. A priest in the days of Joshua and Zerubbabel ( Nehemiah 12:20 ).
1. A priest ( Nehemiah 12:7 ).
shady; or Zalmon (q.v.), a hill covered with dark forests, south of Shechem, from which Abimelech and his men gathered wood to burn that city ( Judges 9:48 ). In Psalms 68:14 the change from war to peace is likened to snow on the dark mountain, as some interpret the expression. Others suppose the words here mean that the bones of the slain left unburied covered the land, so that it seemed to be white as if covered with snow. The reference, however, of the psalm is probably to Joshua 11 and 12. The scattering of the kings and their followers is fitly likened unto the snow-flakes rapidly falling on the dark Salmon. It is the modern Jebel Suleiman.
a promontory on the east of Crete, under which Paul sailed on his voyage to Rome ( Acts 27:7 ); the modern Cape Sidero.
1. The wife of Zebedee and mother of James and John (Mat 27:56 ), and probably the sister of Mary, the mother of our Lord ( John 19:25 ). She sought for her sons places of honour in Christ's kingdom ( Matthew 20:20 Matthew 20:21 ; comp 19:28 ). She witnessed the crucifixion ( Mark 15:40 ), and was present with the other women at the sepulchre ( Matthew 27:56 ).
2. "The daughter of Herodias," not named in the New Testament. On the occasion of the birthday festival held by Herod Antipas, who had married her mother Herodias, in the fortress of Machaerus, she "came in and danced, and pleased Herod" ( Mark 6:14-29 ). John the Baptist, at that time a prisoner in the dungeons underneath the castle, was at her request beheaded by order of Herod, and his head given to the damsel in a charger, "and the damsel gave it to her mother," whose revengeful spirit was thus gratified. "A luxurious feast of the period" (says Farrar, Life of Christ) "was not regarded as complete unless it closed with some gross pantomimic representation; and doubtless Herod had adopted the evil fashion of his day. But he had not anticipated for his guests the rare luxury of seeing a princess, his own niece, a grand-daughter of Herod the Great and of Mariamne, a descendant, therefore, of Simon the high priest and the great line of Maccabean princes, a princess who afterwards became the wife of a tetrarch [Philip, tetrarch of Trachonitis] and the mother of a king, honouring them by degrading herself into a scenic dancer."
used to season food ( Job 6:6 ), and mixed with the fodder of cattle ( Isaiah 30:24 , "clean;" in marg. of RSV "salted"). All meat-offerings were seasoned with salt ( Leviticus 2:13 ). To eat salt with one is to partake of his hospitality, to derive subsistence from him; and hence he who did so was bound to look after his host's interests ( Ezra 4:14 , "We have maintenance from the king's palace;" A.V. marg., "We are salted with the salt of the palace;" RSV, "We eat the salt of the palace").
A "covenant of salt" ( Numbers 18:19 ; 2 Chr 13:5 ) was a covenant of perpetual obligation. New-born children were rubbed with salt ( Ezekiel 16:4 ). Disciples are likened unto salt, with reference to its cleansing and preserving uses ( Matthew 5:13 ). When Abimelech took the city of Shechem, he sowed the place with salt, that it might always remain a barren soil ( Judges 9:45 ). Sir Lyon Playfair argues, on scientific grounds, that under the generic name of "salt," in certain passages, we are to understand petroleum or its residue asphalt. Thus in Genesis 19:26 he would read "pillar of asphalt;" and in Matthew 5:13 , instead of "salt," "petroleum," which loses its essence by exposure, as salt does not, and becomes asphalt, with which pavements were made.
The Jebel Usdum, to the south of the Dead Sea, is a mountain of rock salt about 7 miles long and from 2 to 3 miles wide and some hundreds of feet high.
( Joshua 3:16 ). See DEAD SEA .
one of the cities of Judah ( Joshua 15:62 ), probably in the Valley of Salt, at the southern end of the Dead Sea.
a place where it is said David smote the Syrians ( 2 Samuel 8:13 ). This valley (the' Arabah) is between Judah and Edom on the south of the Dead Sea. Hence some interpreters would insert the words, "and he smote Edom," after the words, "Syrians" in the above text. It is conjectured that while David was leading his army against the Ammonites and Syrians, the Edomites invaded the south of Judah, and that David sent Joab or Abishai against them, who drove them back and finally subdued Edom. (Compare title to Psalms 60 .)
"Eastern modes of salutation are not unfrequently so prolonged as to become wearisome and a positive waste of time. The profusely polite Arab asks so many questions after your health, your happiness, your welfare, your house, and other things, that a person ignorant of the habits of the country would imagine there must be some secret ailment or mysterious sorrow oppressing you, which you wished to conceal, so as to spare the feelings of a dear, sympathizing friend, but which he, in the depth of his anxiety, would desire to hear of. I have often listened to these prolonged salutations in the house, the street, and the highway, and not unfrequently I have experienced their tedious monotony, and I have bitterly lamented useless waste of time" (Porter, Through Samaria, etc.). The work on which the disciples were sent forth was one of urgency, which left no time for empty compliments and prolonged greetings ( Luke 10:4 ).
This word is used of the deliverance of the Israelites from the Egyptians ( Exodus 14:13 ), and of deliverance generally from evil or danger. In the New Testament it is specially used with reference to the great deliverance from the guilt and the pollution of sin wrought out by Jesus Christ, "the great salvation" ( Hebrews 2:3 ). (See REDEMPTION; REGENERATION .)
a watch-mountain or a watch-tower. In the heart of the mountains of Israel, a few miles north-west of Shechem, stands the "hill of Shomeron," a solitary mountain, a great "mamelon." It is an oblong hill, with steep but not inaccessible sides, and a long flat top. Omri, the king of Israel, purchased this hill from Shemer its owner for two talents of silver, and built on its broad summit the city to which he gave the name of "Shomeron", i.e., Samaria, as the new capital of his kingdom instead of Tirzah ( 1 Kings 16:24 ). As such it possessed many advantages. Here Omri resided during the last six years of his reign. As the result of an unsuccessful war with Syria, he appears to have been obliged to grant to the Syrians the right to "make streets in Samaria", i.e., probably permission to the Syrian merchants to carry on their trade in the Israelite capital. This would imply the existence of a considerable Syrian population. "It was the only great city of Palestine created by the sovereign. All the others had been already consecrated by patriarchal tradition or previous possession. But Samaria was the choice of Omri alone. He, indeed, gave to the city which he had built the name of its former owner, but its especial connection with himself as its founder is proved by the designation which it seems Samaria bears in Assyrian inscriptions, Beth-khumri ('the house or palace of Omri').", Stanley.
Samaria was frequently besieged. In the days of Ahab, Benhadad II. came up against it with thirty-two vassal kings, but was defeated with a great slaughter ( 1 Kings 20:1-21 ). A second time, next year, he assailed it; but was again utterly routed, and was compelled to surrender to Ahab ( 20:28-34 ), whose army, as compared with that of Benhadad, was no more than "two little flocks of kids."
In the days of Jehoram this Benhadad again laid siege to Samaria, during which the city was reduced to the direst extremities. But just when success seemed to be within their reach, they suddenly broke up the seige, alarmed by a mysterious noise of chariots and horses and a great army, and fled, leaving their camp with all its contents behind them. The famishing inhabitants of the city were soon relieved with the abundance of the spoil of the Syrian camp; and it came to pass, according to the word of Elisha, that "a measure of fine flour was sold for a shekel, and two measures of barely for a shekel, in the gates of Samaria" ( 2 Kings 7:1-20 ).
Shalmaneser invaded Israel in the days of Hoshea, and reduced it to vassalage. He laid siege to Samaria (B.C. 723), which held out for three years, and was at length captured by Sargon, who completed the conquest Shalmaneser had begun ( 2 Kings 18:9-12 ; 17:3 ), and removed vast numbers of the tribes into captivity. (See SARGON .)
This city, after passing through various vicissitudes, was given by the emperor Augustus to Herod the Great, who rebuilt it, and called it Sebaste (Gr. form of Augustus) in honour of the emperor. In the New Testament the only mention of it is in Acts 8:5-14 , where it is recorded that Philip went down to the city of Samaria and preached there.
It is now represented by the hamlet of Sebustieh, containing about three hundred inhabitants. The ruins of the ancient town are all scattered over the hill, down the sides of which they have rolled. The shafts of about one hundred of what must have been grand Corinthian columns are still standing, and attract much attention, although nothing definite is known regarding them. (Compare Micah 1:6 .)
In the time of Christ, Western Palestine was divided into three provinces, Judea, Samaria, and Galilee. Samaria occupied the centre of Palestine ( John 4:4 ). It is called in the Talmud the "land of the Cuthim," and is not regarded as a part of the Holy Land at all.
It may be noticed that the distance between Samaria and Jerusalem, the respective capitals of the two kingdoms, is only 35 miles in a direct line.
On the return from the Exile, the Jews refused the Samaritans participation with them in the worship at Jerusalem, and the latter separated from all fellowship with them, and built a temple for themselves on Mount Gerizim. This temple was razed to the ground more than one hundred years B.C. Then a system of worship was instituted similar to that of the temple at Jerusalem. It was founded on the Law, copies of which had been multiplied in Israel as well as in Judah. Thus the Pentateuch was preserved among the Samaritans, although they never called it by this name, but always "the Law," which they read as one book. The division into five books, as we now have it, however, was adopted by the Samaritans, as it was by the Jews, in all their priests' copies of "the Law," for the sake of convenience. This was the only portion of the Old Testament which was accepted by the Samaritans as of divine authority.
The form of the letters in the manuscript copies of the Samaritan Pentateuch is different from that of the Hebrew copies, and is probably the same as that which was in general use before the Captivity. There are other peculiarities in the writing which need not here be specified.
There are important differences between the Hebrew and the Samaritan copies of the Pentateuch in the readings of many sentences. In about two thousand instances in which the Samaritan and the Jewish texts differ, the LXX. agrees with the former. The New Testament also, when quoting from the Old Testament, agrees as a rule with the Samaritan text, where that differs from the Jewish. Thus Exodus 12:40 in the Samaritan reads, "Now the sojourning of the children of Israel and of their fathers which they had dwelt in the land of Canaan and in Egypt was four hundred and thirty years" (Compare Galatians 3:17 ). It may be noted that the LXX. has the same reading of this text.
the name given to the new and mixed inhabitants whom Esarhaddon (B.C. 677), the king of Assyria, brought from Babylon and other places and settled in the cities of Samaria, instead of the original inhabitants whom Sargon (B.C. 721) had removed into captivity ( 2 Kings 17:24 ; Compare Ezra 4:2 Ezra 4:9 Ezra 4:10 ). These strangers (Compare Luke 17:18 ) amalgamated with the Jews still remaining in the land, and gradually abandoned their old idolatry and adopted partly the Jewish religion.
After the return from the Captivity, the Jews in Jerusalem refused to allow them to take part with them in rebuilding the temple, and hence sprang up an open enmity between them. They erected a rival temple on Mount Gerizim, which was, however, destroyed by a Jewish king (B.C. 130). They then built another at Shechem. The bitter enmity between the Jews and Samaritans continued in the time of our Lord: the Jews had "no dealings with the Samaritans" ( John 4:9 ; Compare Luke 9:52 Luke 9:53 ). Our Lord was in contempt called "a Samaritan" ( John 8:48 ). Many of the Samaritans early embraced the gospel ( John 4:5-42 ; Acts 8:25 ; 9:31 ; 15:3 ). Of these Samaritans there still remains a small population of about one hundred and sixty, who all reside in Shechem, where they carefully observe the religious customs of their fathers. They are the "smallest and oldest sect in the world."
be gracious, O Nebo! or a cup-bearer of Nebo, probably the title of Nergal-sharezer, one of the princes of Babylon ( Jeremiah 39:3 ).
an island in the AEgean Sea, which Paul passed on his voyage from Assos to Miletus ( Acts 20:15 ), on his third missionary journey. It is about 27 miles long and 20 broad, and lies about 42 miles south-west of Smyrna.
an island in the AEgean Sea, off the coast of Thracia, about 32 miles distant. This Thracian Samos was passed by Paul on his voyage from Troas to Neapolis ( Acts 16:11 ) on his first missionary journey. It is about 8 miles long and 6 miles broad. Its modern name is Samothraki.
of the sun, the son of Manoah, born at Zorah. The narrative of his life is given in Judg. 13-16. He was a "Nazarite unto God" from his birth, the first Nazarite mentioned in Scripture (Judg. 13:3-5 ; Compare Numbers 6:1-21 ). The first recorded event of his life was his marriage with a Philistine woman of Timnath (Judg. 14:1-5 ). Such a marriage was not forbidden by the law of Moses, as the Philistines did not form one of the seven doomed Canaanite nations ( Exodus 34:11-16 ; Deuteronomy 7:1-4 ). It was, however, an ill-assorted and unblessed marriage. His wife was soon taken from him and given "to his companion" ( Judges 14:20 ). For this Samson took revenge by burning the "standing corn of the Philistines" ( 15:1-8 ), who, in their turn, in revenge "burnt her and her father with fire." Her death he terribly avenged ( 15:7-19 ). During the twenty years following this he judged Israel; but we have no record of his life. Probably these twenty years may have been simultaneous with the last twenty years of Eli's life. After this we have an account of his exploits at Gaza ( 16:1-3 ), and of his infatuation for Delilah, and her treachery ( 16:4-20 ), and then of his melancholy death ( 16:21-31 ). He perished in the last terrible destruction he brought upon his enemies. "So the dead which he slew at his death were more [in social and political importance=the elite of the people] than they which he slew in his life."
"Straining all his nerves, he bowed: As with the force of winds and waters pent, When mountains tremble, those two massy pillars With horrible convulsion to and fro He tugged, he shook, till down they came, and drew The whole roof after them, with burst of thunder Upon the heads of all who sat beneath, Lords, ladies, captains, counsellors, or priests, Their choice nobility and flower." Milton's Samson Agonistes.
heard of God. The peculiar circumstances connected with his birth are recorded in 1 Samuel 1:20 . Hannah, one of the two wives of Elkanah, who came up to Shiloh to worship before the Lord, earnestly prayed to God that she might become the mother of a son. Her prayer was graciously granted; and after the child was weaned she brought him to Shiloh nd consecrated him to the Lord as a perpetual Nazarite ( (1:23-2:11). ). Here his bodily wants and training were attended to by the women who served in the tabernacle, while Eli cared for his religious culture. Thus, probably, twelve years of his life passed away. "The child Samuel grew on, and was in favour both with the Lord, and also with men" ( 2:26 ; Compare Luke 2:52 ). It was a time of great and growing degeneracy in Israel ( Judges 21:19-21 ; 1 Samuel 2:12-17 1 Samuel 2:22 ). The Philistines, who of late had greatly increased in number and in power, were practically masters of the country, and kept the people in subjection ( 1 Samuel 10:5 ; 13:3 ).
At this time new communications from God began to be made to the pious child. A mysterious voice came to him in the night season, calling him by name, and, instructed by Eli, he answered, "Speak, Lord; for thy servant heareth." The message that came from the Lord was one of woe and ruin to Eli and his profligate sons. Samuel told it all to Eli, whose only answer to the terrible denunciations ( 1 Samuel 3:11-18 ) was, "It is the Lord; let him do what seemeth him good", the passive submission of a weak character, not, in his case, the expression of the highest trust and faith. The Lord revealed himself now in divers manners to Samuel, and his fame and his influence increased throughout the land as of one divinely called to the prophetical office. A new period in the history of the kingdom of God now commenced.
The Philistine yoke was heavy, and the people, groaning under the wide-spread oppression, suddenly rose in revolt, and "went out against the Philistines to battle." A fierce and disastrous battle was fought at Aphek, near to Ebenezer ( 1 Samuel 4:1 1 Samuel 4:2 ). The Israelites were defeated, leaving 4,000 dead "in the field." The chiefs of the people thought to repair this great disaster by carrying with them the ark of the covenant as the symbol of Jehovah's presence. They accordingly, without consulting Samuel, fetched it out of Shiloh to the camp near Aphek. At the sight of the ark among them the people "shouted with a great shout, so that the earth rang again." A second battle was fought, and again the Philistines defeated the Israelites, stormed their camp, slew 30,000 men, and took the sacred ark. The tidings of this fatal battle was speedily conveyed to Shiloh; and so soon as the aged Eli heard that the ark of God was taken, he fell backward from his seat at the entrance of the sanctuary, and his neck brake, and he died. The tabernacle with its furniture was probably, by the advice of Samuel, now about twenty years of age, removed from Shiloh to some place of safety, and finally to Nob, where it remained many years ( 21:1 ).
The Philistines followed up their advantage, and marched upon Shiloh, which they plundered and destroyed (Compare Jeremiah 7:12 ; Psalms 78:59 ). This was a great epoch in the history of Israel. For twenty years after this fatal battle at Aphek the whole land lay under the oppression of the Philistines. During all these dreary years Samuel was a spiritual power in the land. From Ramah, his native place, where he resided, his influence went forth on every side among the people. With unwearied zeal he went up and down from place to place, reproving, rebuking, and exhorting the people, endeavouring to awaken in them a sense of their sinfulness, and to lead them to repentance. His labours were so far successful that "all the house of Israel lamented after the Lord." Samuel summoned the people to Mizpeh, one of the loftiest hills in Central Palestine, where they fasted and prayed, and prepared themselves there, under his direction, for a great war against the Philistines, who now marched their whole force toward Mizpeh, in order to crush the Israelites once for all. At the intercession of Samuel God interposed in behalf of Israel. Samuel himself was their leader, the only occasion in which he acted as a leader in war. The Philistines were utterly routed. They fled in terror before the army of Israel, and a great slaughter ensued. This battle, fought probably about B.C. 1095, put an end to the forty years of Philistine oppression. In memory of this great deliverance, and in token of gratitude for the help vouchsafed, Samuel set up a great stone in the battlefield, and called it "Ebenezer," saying, "Hitherto hath the Lord helped us" ( 1 Samuel 7:1-12 ). This was the spot where, twenty years before, the Israelites had suffered a great defeat, when the ark of God was taken.
This victory over the Philistines was followed by a long period of peace for Israel ( 1 Samuel 7:13 1 Samuel 7:14 ), during which Samuel exercised the functions of judge, going "from year to year in circuit" from his home in Ramah to Bethel, thence to Gilgal (not that in the Jordan valley, but that which lay to the west of Ebal and Gerizim), and returning by Mizpeh to Ramah. He established regular services at Shiloh, where he built an altar; and at Ramah he gathered a company of young men around him and established a school of the prophets. The schools of the prophets, thus originated, and afterwards established also at Gibeah, Bethel, Gilgal, and Jericho, exercised an important influence on the national character and history of the people in maintaining pure religion in the midst of growing corruption. They continued to the end of the Jewish commonwealth.
Many years now passed, during which Samuel exercised the functions of his judicial office, being the friend and counsellor of the people in all matters of private and public interest. He was a great statesman as well as a reformer, and all regarded him with veneration as the "seer," the prophet of the Lord. At the close of this period, when he was now an old man, the elders of Israel came to him at Ramah ( 1 Samuel 8:4 1 Samuel 8:5 1 Samuel 8:19-22 ); and feeling how great was the danger to which the nation was exposed from the misconduct of Samuel's sons, whom he had invested with judicial functions as his assistants, and had placed at Beersheba on the Philistine border, and also from a threatened invasion of the Ammonites, they demanded that a king should be set over them. This request was very displeasing to Samuel. He remonstrated with them, and warned them of the consequences of such a step. At length, however, referring the matter to God, he acceded to their desires, and anointed Saul (q.v.) to be their king ( 11:15 ). Before retiring from public life he convened an assembly of the people at Gilgal (ch. 12), and there solemnly addressed them with reference to his own relation to them as judge and prophet.
The remainder of his life he spent in retirement at Ramah, only occasionally and in special circumstances appearing again in public ( 1 Samuel 1315 ,15) with communications from God to king Saul. While mourning over the many evils which now fell upon the nation, he is suddenly summoned (ch.16) to go to Bethlehem and anoint David, the son of Jesse, as king over Israel instead of Saul. After this little is known of him till the time of his death, which took place at Ramah when he was probably about eighty years of age. "And all Israel gathered themselves together, and lamented him, and buried him in his house at Ramah" ( 25:1 ), not in the house itself, but in the court or garden of his house. (Compare 2 Kings 21:18 ; 2 Chr 33:20 ; 1 Kings 2:34 ; John 19:41 .)
The LXX. translators regarded the books of Samuel and of Kings as forming one continuous history, which they divided into four books, which they called "Books of the Kingdom." The Vulgate version followed this division, but styled them "Books of the Kings." These books of Samuel they accordingly called the "First" and "Second" Books of Kings, and not, as in the modern Protestant versions, the "First" and "Second" Books of Samuel.
The authors of the books of Samuel were probably Samuel, Gad, and Nathan. Samuel penned the first twenty-four chapters of the first book. Gad, the companion of David ( 1 Samuel 22:5 ), continued the history thus commenced; and Nathan completed it, probably arranging the whole in the form in which we now have it ( 1 Chronicles 29:29 ).
The contents of the books. The first book comprises a period of about a hundred years, and nearly coincides with the life of Samuel. It contains (1) the history of Eli (1-4); (2) the history of Samuel (5-12); (3) the history of Saul, and of David in exile (13-31). The second book, comprising a period of perhaps fifty years, contains a history of the reign of David (1) over Judah (1-4), and (2) over all Israel (5-24), mainly in its political aspects. The last four chapters of Second Samuel may be regarded as a sort of appendix recording various events, but not chronologically. These books do not contain complete histories. Frequent gaps are met with in the record, because their object is to present a history of the kingdom of God in its gradual development, and not of the events of the reigns of the successive rulers. It is noticeable that the section ( 2 Samuel 11:2-12 : 29 ) containing an account of David's sin in the matter of Bathsheba is omitted in the corresponding passage in 1 Chronicles 20 .
held some place of authority in Samaria when Nehemiah went up to Jerusalem to rebuild its ruined walls. He vainly attempted to hinder this work ( Nehemiah 2:10 Nehemiah 2:19 ; 4:1-12 ; 6 ). His daughter became the wife of one of the sons of Joiada, a son of the high priest, much to the grief of ( Nehemiah 13:28 ).
involves more than a mere moral reformation of character, brought about by the power of the truth: it is the work of the Holy Spirit bringing the whole nature more and more under the influences of the new gracious principles implanted in the soul in regeneration. In other words, sanctification is the carrying on to perfection the work begun in regeneration, and it extends to the whole man ( Romans 6:13 ; 2 co 4:6 ; Colossians 3:10 ; 1 John 4:7 ; 1 Corinthians 6:19 ). It is the special office of the Holy Spirit in the plan of redemption to carry on this work ( 1 Corinthians 6:11 ; 2 th. 2:13 ). Faith is instrumental in securing sanctification, inasmuch as it (1) secures union to Christ ( Galatians 2:20 ), and (2) brings the believer into living contact with the truth, whereby he is led to yield obedience "to the commands, trembling at the threatenings, and embracing the promises of God for this life and that which is to come."
Perfect sanctification is not attainable in this life ( 1 Kings 8:46 ; Proverbs 20:9 ; Eccl 7:20 ; James 3:2 ; 1 John 1:8 ). See Paul's account of himself in Romans 7:14-25 ; Phil 3:12-14 ; and 1 Timothy 1:15 ; also the confessions of David ( Psalms 19:12 Psalms 19:13 ; 51 ), of Moses ( 90:8 ), of ( Job 42:5 Job 42:6 ), and of ( Daniel 9:3-20 ). "The more holy a man is, the more humble, self-renouncing, self-abhorring, and the more sensitive to every sin he becomes, and the more closely he clings to Christ. The moral imperfections which cling to him he feels to be sins, which he laments and strives to overcome. Believers find that their life is a constant warfare, and they need to take the kingdom of heaven by storm, and watch while they pray. They are always subject to the constant chastisement of their Father's loving hand, which can only be designed to correct their imperfections and to confirm their graces. And it has been notoriously the fact that the best Christians have been those who have been the least prone to claim the attainment of perfection for themselves.", Hodge's Outlines.
denotes, (1) the Holy Land ( Exodus 15:17 ; Compare Psalms 114:2 ); (2) the temple ( 1 Chronicles 22:19 ; 2 Chr 29:21 ); (3) the tabernacle ( Exodus 25:8 ; Leviticus 12:4 ; 21:12 ); (4) the holy place, the place of the Presence (Gr. hieron, the temple-house; not the naos , which is the temple area, with its courts and porches), Leviticus 4:6 ; Ephesians 2:21 , RSV, marg.; (5) God's holy habitation in heaven ( Psalms 102:19 ). In the final state there is properly "no sanctuary" ( Revelation 21:22 ), for God and the Lamb "are the sanctuary" (RSV, "temple"). All is there hallowed by the Divine Presence; all is sancturary.
Mentioned only in Mark 6:9 and Acts 12:8 . The sandal was simply a sole, made of wood or palm-bark, fastened to the foot by leathern straps. Sandals were also made of seal-skin (Ezek. 16:10 ; lit. tahash, "leather;" A.V., "badger's skin;" RSV, "sealskin," or marg., "porpoise-skin"). (See SHOE .)
more correctly Sanhedrin (Gr. synedrion), meaning "a sitting together," or a "council." This word (rendered "council," A.V.) is frequently used in the New Testament ( Matthew 5:22 ; 26:59 ; Mark 15:1 , etc.) to denote the supreme judicial and administrative council of the Jews, which, it is said, was first instituted by Moses, and was composed of seventy men ( Numbers 11:16 Numbers 11:17 ). But that seems to have been only a temporary arrangement which Moses made. This council is with greater probability supposed to have originated among the Jews when they were under the domination of the Syrian kings in the time of the Maccabees. The name is first employed by the Jewish historian Josephus. This "council" is referred to simply as the "chief priests and elders of the people" ( Matthew 26:3 Matthew 26:47 Matthew 26:57 Matthew 26:59 ; Matthew 27:1 Matthew 27:3 Matthew 27:12 Matthew 27:20 , etc.), before whom Christ was tried on the charge of claiming to be the Messiah. Peter and John were also brought before it for promulgating heresy ( Acts 4:1-23 ; 5:17-41 ); as was also Stephen on a charge of blasphemy ( 6:12-15 ), and Paul for violating a temple by-law ( 22:30 ; 23:1-10 ).
The Sanhedrin is said to have consisted of seventy-one members, the high priest being president. They were of three classes (1) the chief priests, or heads of the twenty-four priestly courses ( 1 Chronicles 24 ), (2) the scribes, and (3) the elders. As the highest court of judicature, "in all causes and over all persons, ecclesiastical and civil, supreme," its decrees were binding, not only on the Jews in Palestine, but on all Jews wherever scattered abroad. Its jurisdiction was greatly curtailed by Herod, and afterwards by the Romans. Its usual place of meeting was within the precincts of the temple, in the hall "Gazith," but it sometimes met also in the house of the high priest ( Matthew 26:3 ), who was assisted by two vice-presidents.
beautiful, a town of Judah ( Micah 1:11 ), identified with es-Suafir, 5 miles south-east of Ashdod.
beautiful, the wife of Ananias (q.v.). She was a partner in his guilt and also in his punishment ( Acts 5:1-11 ).
Associated with diamonds ( Exodus 28:18 ) and emeralds ( Ezekiel 28:13 ); one of the stones in the high priest's breastplate. It is a precious stone of a sky-blue colour, probably the lapis lazuli, brought from Babylon. The throne of God is described as of the colour of a sapphire ( Exodus 24:10 ; Compare Ezekiel 1:26 ).
princess, the wife and at the same time the half-sister of Abraham ( Genesis 11:29 ; 20:12 ). This name was given to her at the time that it was announced to Abraham that she should be the mother of the promised child. Her story is from her marriage identified with that of the patriarch till the time of her death. Her death, at the age of one hundred and twenty-seven years (the only instance in Scripture where the age of a woman is recorded), was the occasion of Abraham's purchasing the cave of Machpelah as a family burying-place.
In the allegory of Galatians 4:22-31 she is the type of the "Jerusalem which is above." She is also mentioned as Sara in Hebrews 11:11 among the Old Testament worthies, who "all died in faith." (See ABRAHAM .)
( Revelation 4:3 , RSV, "sardius;" Heb. 'odhem; LXX., Gr. sardion, from a root meaning "red"), a gem of a blood-red colour. It was called "sardius" because obtained from Sardis in Lydia. It is enumerated among the precious stones in the high priest's breastplate ( Exodus 28:17 ; 39:10 ). It is our red carnelian.
the metropolis of Lydia in Asia Minor. It stood on the river Pactolus, at the foot of mount Tmolus. Here was one of the seven Asiatic churches ( Revelation 3:1-6 ). It is now a ruin called Sert-Kalessi.
( Revelation 21:20 ), a species of the carnelian combining the sard and the onyx, having three layers of opaque spots or stripes on a transparent red basis. Like the sardine, it is a variety of the chalcedony.
(In the inscriptions, "Sarra-yukin" [the god] has appointed the king; also "Sarru-kinu," the legitimate king.) On the death of Shalmaneser (B.C. 723), one of the Assyrian generals established himself on the vacant throne, taking the name of "Sargon," after that of the famous monarch, the Sargon of Accad, founder of the first Semitic empire, as well as of one of the most famous libraries of Chaldea. He forthwith began a conquering career, and became one of the most powerful of the Assyrian monarchs. He is mentioned by name in the Bible only in connection with the siege of Ashdod ( Isaiah 20:1 ).
At the very beginning of his reign he besieged and took the city of Samaria ( 2 Kings 17:6 ; 18:9-12 ). On an inscription found in the palace he built at Khorsabad, near Nieveh, he says, "The city of Samaria I besieged, I took; 27,280 of its inhabitants I carried away; fifty chariots that were among them I collected," etc. The northern kingdom he changed into an Assyrian satrapy. He afterwards drove Merodach-baladan (q.v.), who kept him at bay for twelve years, out of Babylon, which he entered in triumph. By a succession of victories he gradually enlarged and consolidated the empire, which now extended from the frontiers of Egypt in the west to the mountains of Elam in the east, and thus carried almost to completion the ambitious designs of Tiglath-pileser (q.v.). He was murdered by one of his own soldiers (B.C. 705) in his palace at Khorsabad, after a reign of sixteen years, and was succeeded by his son Sennacherib.
adversary; accuser. When used as a proper name, the Hebrew word so rendered has the article "the adversary" ( Job 1:6-12 ; 2:1-7 ). In the New Testament it is used as interchangeable with Diabolos, or the devil, and is so used more than thirty times.
He is also called "the dragon," "the old serpent" ( Revelation 12:9 ; 20:2 ); "the prince of this world" ( John 12:31 ; 14:30 ); "the prince of the power of the air" ( Ephesians 2:2 ); "the god of this world" ( 2 Corinthians 4:4 ); "the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience" ( Ephesians 2:2 ). The distinct personality of Satan and his activity among men are thus obviously recognized. He tempted our Lord in the wilderness ( Matthew 4:1-11 ). He is "Beelzebub, the prince of the devils" ( 12:24 ). He is "the constant enemy of God, of Christ, of the divine kingdom, of the followers of Christ, and of all truth; full of falsehood and all malice, and exciting and seducing to evil in every possible way." His power is very great in the world. He is a "roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour" ( 1 Peter 5:8 ). Men are said to be "taken captive by him" ( 2 Timothy 2:26 ). Christians are warned against his "devices" ( 2 Corinthians 2:11 ), and called on to "resist" him ( James 4:7 ). Christ redeems his people from "him that had the power of death, that is, the devil" ( Hebrews 2:14 ). Satan has the "power of death," not as lord, but simply as executioner.
hairy one. Mentioned in Greek mythology as a creature composed of a man and a goat, supposed to inhabit wild and desolate regions. The Hebrew word is rendered also "goat" ( Leviticus 4:24 ) and "devil", i.e., an idol in the form of a goat ( 17:7 ; 2 Chr. 11:15 ). When it is said ( Isaiah 13:21 ; comp 34:14 ) "the satyrs shall dance there," the meaning is that the place referred to shall become a desolate waste. Some render the Hebrew word "baboon," a species of which is found in Babylonia.
2. The son of Kish (probably his only son, and a child of prayer, "asked for"), of the tribe of Benjamin, the first king of the Jewish nation. The singular providential circumstances connected with his election as king are recorded in 1 Samuel 810 -10. His father's she-asses had strayed, and Saul was sent with a servant to seek for them. Leaving his home at Gibeah ( 10:5 , "the hill of God," A.V.; lit., as in RSV marg., "Gibeah of God"), Saul and his servant went toward the north-west over Mount Ephraim, and then turning north-east they came to "the land of Shalisha," and thence eastward to the land of Shalim, and at length came to the district of Zuph, near Samuel's home at Ramah ( 9:5-10 ). At this point Saul proposed to return from the three days' fruitless search, but his servant suggested that they should first consult the "seer." Hearing that he was about to offer sacrifice, the two hastened into Ramah, and "behold, Samuel came out against them," on his way to the "bamah", i.e., the "height", where sacrifice was to be offered; and in answer to Saul's question, "Tell me, I pray thee, where the seer's house is," Samuel made himself known to him. Samuel had been divinely prepared for his coming ( 9:15-17 ), and received Saul as his guest. He took him with him to the sacrifice, and then after the feast "communed with Saul upon the top of the house" of all that was in his heart. On the morrow Samuel "took a vial of oil and poured it on his head," and anointed Saul as king over Israel ( (9:25-10:8), ), giving him three signs in confirmation of his call to be king. When Saul reached his home in Gibeah the last of these signs was fulfilled, and the Sprit of God came upon him, and "he was turned into another man." The simple countryman was transformed into the king of Israel, a remarkable change suddenly took place in his whole demeanour, and the people said in their astonishment, as they looked on the stalwart son of Kish, "Is Saul also among the prophets?", a saying which passed into a "proverb." (Comp 19:24 .) The intercourse between Saul and Samuel was as yet unknown to the people. The "anointing" had been in secret. But now the time had come when the transaction must be confirmed by the nation. Samuel accordingly summoned the people to a solemn assembly "before the Lord" at Mizpeh. Here the lot was drawn ( 10:17-27 ), and it fell upon Saul, and when he was presented before them, the stateliest man in all Israel, the air was rent for the first time in Israel by the loud cry, "God save the king!" He now returned to his home in Gibeah, attended by a kind of bodyguard, "a band of men whose hearts God had touched." On reaching his home he dismissed them, and resumed the quiet toils of his former life. Soon after this, on hearing of the conduct of Nahash the Ammonite at Jabeshgilead (q.v.), an army out of all the tribes of Israel rallied at his summons to the trysting-place at Bezek, and he led them forth a great army to battle, gaining a complete victory over the Ammonite invaders at Jabesh ( 11:1-11 ). Amid the universal joy occasioned by this victory he was now fully recognized as the king of Israel. At the invitation of Samuel "all the people went to Gilgal, and there they made Saul king before the Lord in Gilgal." Samuel now officially anointed him as king ( 11:15 ). Although Samuel never ceased to be a judge in Israel, yet now his work in that capacity practically came to an end. Saul now undertook the great and difficult enterprise of freeing the land from its hereditary enemies the Philistines, and for this end he gathered together an army of 3,000 men ( 1 Samuel 13:1 1 Samuel 13:2 ). The Philistines were encamped at Geba. Saul, with 2,000 men, occupied Michmash and Mount Bethel; while his son Jonathan, with 1,000 men, occupied Gibeah, to the south of Geba, and seemingly without any direction from his father "smote" the Philistines in Geba. Thus roused, the Philistines, who gathered an army of 30,000 chariots and 6,000 horsemen, and "people as the sand which is on the sea-shore in multitude," encamped in Michmash, which Saul had evacuated for Gilgal. Saul now tarried for seven days in Gilgal before making any movement, as Samuel had appointed ( 10:8 ); but becoming impatient on the seventh day, as it was drawing to a close, when he had made an end of offering the burnt offering, Samuel appeared and warned him of the fatal consequences of his act of disobedience, for he had not waited long enough ( 1 Samuel 13:13 1 Samuel 13:14 ). When Saul, after Samuel's departure, went out from Gilgal with his 600 men, his followers having decreased to that number ( 13:15 ), against the Philistines at Michmash (q.v.), he had his head-quarters under a pomegrante tree at Migron, over against Michmash, the Wady esSuweinit alone intervening. Here at Gibeah-Geba Saul and his army rested, uncertain what to do. Jonathan became impatient, and with his armour-bearer planned an assault against the Philistines, unknown to Saul and the army ( 14:1-15 ). Jonathan and his armour-bearer went down into the wady, and on their hands and knees climbed to the top of the narrow rocky ridge called Bozez, where was the outpost of the Philistine army. They surprised and then slew twenty of the Philistines, and immediately the whole host of the Philistines was thrown into disorder and fled in great terror. "It was a very great trembling;" a supernatural panic seized the host. Saul and his 600 men, a band which speedily increased to 10,000, perceiving the confusion, pursued the army of the Philistines, and the tide of battle rolled on as far as to Bethaven, halfway between Michmash and Bethel. The Philistines were totally routed. "So the Lord saved Israel that day." While pursuing the Philistines, Saul rashly adjured the people, saying, "Cursed be the man that eateth any food until evening." But though faint and weary, the Israelites "smote the Philistines that day from Michmash to Aijalon" (a distance of from 15 to 20 miles). Jonathan had, while passing through the wood in pursuit of the Philistines, tasted a little of the honeycomb which was abundant there ( 14:27 ). This was afterwards discovered by Saul (ver. 42), and he threatened to put his son to death. The people, however, interposed, saying, "There shall not one hair of his head fall to the ground." He whom God had so signally owned, who had "wrought this great salvation in Israel," must not die. "Then Saul went up from following the Philistines: and the Philistines went to their own place" ( 1 Samuel 14:24-46 ); and thus the campaign against the Philistines came to an end. This was Saul's second great military success. Saul's reign, however, continued to be one of almost constant war against his enemies round about ( 1 Samuel 14:47 1 Samuel 14:48 ), in all of which he proved victorious. The war against the Amalekites is the only one which is recorded at length ( 1 Samuel 15 ). These oldest and hereditary ( Exodus 17:8 ; Numbers 14:43-45 ) enemies of Israel occupied the territory to the south and south-west of Palestine. Samuel summoned Saul to execute the "ban" which God had pronounced ( Deuteronomy 25:17-19 ) on this cruel and relentless foe of Israel. The cup of their iniquity was now full. This command was "the test of his moral qualification for being king." Saul proceeded to execute the divine command; and gathering the people together, marched from Telaim ( 1 Samuel 15:4 ) against the Amalekites, whom he smote "from Havilah until thou comest to Shur," utterly destroying "all the people with the edge of the sword", i.e., all that fell into his hands. He was, however, guilty of rebellion and disobedience in sparing Agag their king, and in conniving at his soldiers' sparing the best of the sheep and cattle; and Samuel, following Saul to Gilgal, in the Jordan valley, said unto him, "Because thou hast rejected the word of the Lord, he also hath rejected thee from being king" ( 15:23 ). The kingdom was rent from Saul and was given to another, even to David, whom the Lord chose to be Saul's successor, and whom Samuel anointed ( 16:1-13 ). From that day "the spirit of the Lord departed from Saul, and an evil spirit from the Lord troubled him." He and Samuel parted only to meet once again at one of the schools of the prophets. David was now sent for as a "cunning player on an harp" ( 1 Samuel 16:16 1 Samuel 16:18 ), to play before Saul when the evil spirit troubled him, and thus was introduced to the court of Saul. He became a great favourite with the king. At length David returned to his father's house and to his wonted avocation as a shepherd for perhaps some three years. The Philistines once more invaded the land, and gathered their army between Shochoh and Azekah, in Ephes-dammim, on the southern slope of the valley of Elah. Saul and the men of Israel went forth to meet them, and encamped on the northern slope of the same valley which lay between the two armies. It was here that David slew Goliath of Gath, the champion of the Philistines ( 17:4-54 ), an exploit which led to the flight and utter defeat of the Philistine army. Saul now took David permanently into his service ( 18:2 ); but he became jealous of him (ver. 9), and on many occasions showed his enmity toward him (ver. 10,11), his enmity ripening into a purpose of murder which at different times he tried in vain to carry out. After some time the Philistines "gathered themselves together" in the plain of Esdraelon, and pitched their camp at Shunem, on the slope of Little Hermon; and Saul "gathered all Israel together," and "pitched in Gilboa" ( 1 Samuel 28:3-14 ). Being unable to discover the mind of the Lord, Saul, accompanied by two of his retinue, betook himself to the "witch of Endor," some 7 or 8 miles distant. Here he was overwhelmed by the startling communication that was mysteriously made to him by Samuel (ver. 16-19), who appeared to him. "He fell straightway all along on the earth, and was sore afraid, because of the words of Samuel" (ver. 20). The Philistine host "fought against Israel: and the men of Israel fled before the Philistines, and fell down slain in Mount Gilboa" ( 31:1 ). In his despair at the disaster that had befallen his army, Saul "took a sword and fell upon it." And the Philistines on the morrow "found Saul and his three sons fallen in Mount Gilboa." Having cut off his head, they sent it with his weapons to Philistia, and hung up the skull in the temple of Dagon at Ashdod. They suspended his headless body, with that of Jonathan, from the walls of Bethshan. The men of Jabesh-gilead afterwards removed the bodies from this position; and having burnt the flesh, they buried the bodies under a tree at Jabesh. The remains were, however, afterwards removed to the family sepulchre at Zelah ( 2 Samuel 21:13 2 Samuel 21:14 ). (See DAVID .)
one who saves from any form or degree of evil. In its highest sense the word indicates the relation sustained by our Lord to his redeemed ones, he is their Saviour. The great message of the gospel is about salvation and the Saviour. It is the "gospel of salvation." Faith in the Lord Jesus Christ secures to the sinner a personal interest in the work of redemption. Salvation is redemption made effectual to the individual by the power of the Holy Spirit.
Leviticus 16:8-26 ; RSV, "the goat for Azazel" (q.v.), the name given to the goat which was taken away into the wilderness on the day of Atonement ( 16:20-22 ). The priest made atonement over the scapegoat, laying Israel's guilt upon it, and then sent it away, the goat bearing "upon him all their iniquities unto a land not inhabited."
At a later period an evasion or modification of the law of Moses was introduced by the Jews. "The goat was conducted to a mountain named Tzuk, situated at a distance of ten Sabbath days' journey, or about six and a half English miles, from Jerusalem. At this place the Judean desert was supposed to commence; and the man in whose charge the goat was sent out, while setting him free, was instructed to push the unhappy beast down the slope of the mountain side, which was so steep as to insure the death of the goat, whose bones were broken by the fall. The reason of this barbarous custom was that on one occasion the scapegoat returned to Jerusalem after being set free, which was considered such an evil omen that its recurrence was prevented for the future by the death of the goat" (Twenty-one Years' Work in the Holy Land). This mountain is now called el-Muntar.
This dye was obtained by the Egyptians from the shell-fish Carthamus tinctorius; and by the Hebrews from the Coccus ilicis, an insect which infests oak trees, called kermes by the Arabians.
This colour was early known ( Genesis 38:28 ). It was one of the colours of the ephod ( Exodus 28:6 ), the girdle (8), and the breastplate (15) of the high priest. It is also mentioned in various other connections ( Joshua 2:18 ; 2 Sam 1:24 ; Lamentations 4:5 ; Nahum 2:3 ). A scarlet robe was in mockery placed on our Lord ( Matthew 27:28 ; Luke 23:11 ). "Sins as scarlet" ( Isaiah 1:18 ), i.e., as scarlet robes "glaring and habitual." Scarlet and crimson were the firmest of dyes, and thus not easily washed out.
(Heb. shebet = Gr. skeptron), properly a staff or rod. As a symbol of authority, the use of the sceptre originated in the idea that the ruler was as a shepherd of his people ( Genesis 49:10 ; Numbers 24:17 ; Psalms 45:6 ; Isaiah 14:5 ). There is no example on record of a sceptre having ever been actually handled by a Jewish king.
an implement, a Jew, chief of the priests at Ephesus ( Acts 19:13-16 ); i.e., the head of one of the twenty-four courses of the house of Levi. He had seven sons, who "took upon them to call over them which had evil spirits the name of the Lord Jesus," in imitation of Paul. They tried their method of exorcism on a fierce demoniac, and failed. His answer to them was to this effect ( 19:15 ): "The Jesus whom you invoke is One whose authority I acknowledge; and the Paul whom you name I recognize to be a servant or messenger of God; but what sort of men are ye who have been empowered to act as you do by neither?" (Lindsay on the Acts of the Apostles.)
a separation, an alienation causing divisions among Christians, who ought to be united ( 1 Corinthians 12:25 ).
the law so designated by Paul ( Galatians 3:24 Galatians 3:25 ). As so used, the word does not mean teacher, but pedagogue (shortened into the modern page), i.e., one who was intrusted with the supervision of a family, taking them to and from the school, being responsible for their safety and manners. Hence the pedagogue was stern and severe in his discipline. Thus the law was a pedagogue to the Jews, with a view to Christ, i.e., to prepare for faith in Christ by producing convictions of guilt and helplessness. The office of the pedagogue ceased when "faith came", i.e., the object of that faith, the seed, which is Christ.
( 1 Samuel 19:18-24 ; 2 Kings 1 Samuel 2:3 1 Samuel 2:5 1 Samuel 2:7 1 Samuel 2:12 1 Samuel 2:15 ) were instituted for the purpose of training young men for the prophetical and priestly offices. (See PROPHET; SAMUEL .)
mentioned along with serpents ( Deuteronomy 8:15 ). Used also figuratively to denote wicked persons ( Ezekiel 2:6 ; Luke 10:19 ); also a particular kind of scourge or whip ( 1 Kings 12:11 ). Scorpions were a species of spider. They abounded in the Jordan valley.
( 1 Kings 12:11 ). Variously administered. In no case were the stripes to exceed forty ( Deuteronomy 25:3 ; Compare 2 Corinthians 11:24 ). In the time of the apostles, in consequence of the passing of what was called the Porcian law, no Roman citizen could be scourged in any case ( Acts 16:22-37 ). (See BASTINADO .) In the scourging of our Lord ( Matthew 27:26 ; Mark 15:15 ) the words of prophecy ( Isaiah 53:5 ) were fulfilled.
anciently held various important offices in the public affairs of the nation. The Hebrew word so rendered (sopher) is first used to designate the holder of some military office (Judg. 5:14 ; A.V., "pen of the writer;" RSV, "the marshal's staff;" marg., "the staff of the scribe"). The scribes acted as secretaries of state, whose business it was to prepare and issue decrees in the name of the king ( 2 Samuel 8:17 ; 20:25 ; 1 Chronicles 18:16 ; 24:6 ; 1 Kings 4:3 ; 2 Kings 12:9-11 ; 18:18-37 , etc.). They discharged various other important public duties as men of high authority and influence in the affairs of state.
There was also a subordinate class of scribes, most of whom were Levites. They were engaged in various ways as writers. Such, for example, was Baruch, who "wrote from the mouth of Jeremiah all the words of the Lord" ( Jeremiah 36:4 Jeremiah 36:32 ).
In later times, after the Captivity, when the nation lost its independence, the scribes turned their attention to the law, gaining for themselves distinction by their intimate acquaintance with its contents. On them devolved the duty of multiplying copies of the law and of teaching it to others ( Ezra 7:6 Ezra 7:10-12 ; Nehemiah 8:1 Nehemiah 8:4 Nehemiah 8:9 Nehemiah 8:13 ). It is evident that in New Testament times the scribes belonged to the sect of the Pharisees, who supplemented the ancient written law by their traditions ( Matthew 23 ), thereby obscuring it and rendering it of none effect. The titles "scribes" and "lawyers" (q.v.) are in the Gospels interchangeable ( Matthew 22:35 ; Mark 12:28 ; Luke 20:39 , etc.). They were in the time of our Lord the public teachers of the people, and frequently came into collision with him. They afterwards showed themselves greatly hostile to the apostles ( Acts 4:5 ; 6:12 ).
Some of the scribes, however, were men of a different spirit, and showed themselves friendly to the gospel and its preachers. Thus Gamaliel advised the Sanhedrin, when the apostles were before them charged with "teaching in this name," to "refrain from these men and let them alone" ( Acts 5:34-39 ; comp 23:9 ).
a small bag or wallet usually fastened to the girdle ( 1 Samuel 17:40 ); "a shepherd's bag."
In the New Testament it is the rendering of Gr. pera, which was a bag carried by travellers and shepherds, generally made of skin ( Matthew 10:10 ; Mark 6:8 ; Luke 9:3 ; 10:4 ). The name "scrip" is meant to denote that the bag was intended to hold scraps, fragments, as if scraped off from larger articles, trifles.
invariably in the New Testament denotes that definite collection of sacred books, regarded as given by inspiration of God, which we usually call the Old Testament ( 2 Timothy 3:15 2 Timothy 3:16 ; John 20:9 ; Galatians 3:22 ; 2 Pet 1:20 ). It was God's purpose thus to perpetuate his revealed will. From time to time he raised up men to commit to writing in an infallible record the revelation he gave. The "Scripture," or collection of sacred writings, was thus enlarged from time to time as God saw necessary. We have now a completed "Scripture," consisting of the Old and New Testaments. The Old Testament canon in the time of our Lord was precisely the same as that which we now possess under that name. He placed the seal of his own authority on this collection of writings, as all equally given by inspiration ( Matthew 5:17 ; 7:12 ; 22:40 ; Luke 16:29 Luke 16:31 ). (See BIBLE; CANON .)
The Scythians consisted of "all the pastoral tribes who dwelt to the north of the Black Sea and the Caspian, and were scattered far away toward the east. Of this vast country but little was anciently known. Its modern representative is Russia, which, to a great extent, includes the same territories." They were the descendants of Japheth ( Genesis 9:27 ). It appears that in apostolic times there were some of this people that embraced Christianity ( Colossians 3:11 ).
a figurative expression used in Revelation 4:6 and 15:2 . According to the interpretation of some, "this calm, glass-like sea, which is never in storm, but only interfused with flame, represents the counsels of God, those purposes of righteousness and love which are often fathomless but never obscure, always the same, though sometimes glowing with holy anger." (Compare Psalms 36:6 ; 77:19 ; Romans 11:33-36 .)
[J] indicates this entry was also found in Jack Van Impe's Prophecy Dictionary
( Jeremiah 48:32 ), a lake, now represented by some ponds in the high valley in which the Ammonite city of Jazer lies, the ruins of which are called Sar.
(Heb. yam), signifies (1) "the gathering together of the waters," the ocean ( Genesis 1:10 ); (2) a river, as the Nile ( Isaiah 19:5 ), the Euphrates ( Isaiah 21:1 ; Jeremiah 51:36 ); (3) the Red Sea ( Exodus 14:16 Exodus 14:27 ; 15:4 , etc.); (4) the Mediterranean ( Exodus 23:31 ; Numbers 34:6 Numbers 34:7 ; Joshua 15:47 ; Psalms 80:11 , etc.); (5) the "sea of Galilee," an inland fresh-water lake, and (6) the Dead Sea or "salt sea" ( Genesis 14:3 ; Numbers 34:3 Numbers 34:12 , etc.). The word "sea" is used symbolically in Isaiah 60:5 , where it probably means the nations around the Mediterranean. In Daniel 7:3 , Revelation 13:1 it may mean the tumultuous changes among the nations of the earth.
the great laver made by Solomon for the use of the priests in the temple, described in 1 Kings 7:23-26 ; 2 Chr 4:2-5 . It stood in the south-eastern corner of the inner court. It was 5 cubits high, 10 in diameter from brim to brim, and 30 in circumference. It was placed on the backs of twelve oxen, standing with their faces outward. It was capable of containing two or three thousand baths of water (Compare 2 Chronicles 4:5 ), which was originally supplied by the Gibeonites, but was afterwards brought by a conduit from the pools of Bethlehem. It was made of "brass" (copper), which Solomon had taken from the captured cities of Hadarezer, the king of Zobah ( 1 Chronicles 18:8 ). Ahaz afterwards removed this laver from the oxen, and placed it on a stone pavement ( 2 Kings 16:17 ). It was destroyed by the Chaldeans ( 25:13 ).
In land measure, a space of 50 cubits long by 50 broad. In measure of capacity, a seah was a little over one peck. (See MEASURE .)
commonly a ring engraved with some device ( Genesis 38:18 Genesis 38:25 ). Jezebel "wrote letters in Ahab's name, and sealed them with his seal" ( 1 Kings 21:8 ). Seals are frequently mentioned in Jewish history ( Deuteronomy 32:34 ; Nehemiah 9:38 ; 10:1 ; Esther 3:12 ; Cant 8:6 ; Isaiah 8:16 ; Jeremiah 22:24 ; 32:44 , etc.). Sealing a document was equivalent to the signature of the owner of the seal. "The use of a signet-ring by the monarch has recently received a remarkable illustration by the discovery of an impression of such a signet on fine clay at Koyunjik, the site of the ancient Nineveh. This seal appears to have been impressed from the bezel of a metallic finger-ring. It is an oval, 2 inches in length by 1 inch wide, and bears the image, name, and titles of the Egyptian king Sabaco" (Rawlinson's Hist. Illus. of the O.T., p. 46). The actual signet-rings of two Egyptian kings (Cheops and Horus) have been discovered. (See SIGNET .)
The use of seals is mentioned in the New Testament only in connection with the record of our Lord's burial ( Matthew 27:66 ). The tomb was sealed by the Pharisees and chief priests for the purpose of making sure that the disciples would not come and steal the body away (ver. 63,64). The mode of doing this was probably by stretching a cord across the stone and sealing it at both ends with sealing-clay. When God is said to have sealed the Redeemer, the meaning is, that he has attested his divine mission ( John 6:27 ). Circumcision is a seal, an attestation of the covenant ( Romans 4:11 ). Believers are sealed with the Spirit, as God's mark put upon them ( Ephesians 1:13 ; 4:30 ). Converts are by Paul styled the seal of his apostleship, i.e., they are its attestation ( 1 Corinthians 9:2 ). Seals and sealing are frequently mentioned in the book of ( Revelation 5:1 ; 6:1 ; 7:3 ; 10:4 ; 22:10 ).
( Genesis 8:22 ). See AGRICULTURE; MONTH .
1. One of the sons of Cush ( Genesis 10:7 ).
2. The name of a country and nation ( Isaiah 43:3 ; 45:14 ) mentioned along with Egypt and Ethiopia, and therefore probably in north-eastern Africa. The ancient name of Meroe. The kings of Sheba and Seba are mentioned together in Psalms 72:10 .
enclosure, one of the six cities in the wilderness of Judah, noted for its "great cistern" ( Joshua 15:61 ). It has been identified with the ruin Sikkeh, east of Bethany.
a hill or watch-tower, a place between Gibeah and Ramah noted for its "great well" ( 1 Samuel 19:22 ); probably the modern Suweikeh, south of Beeroth.
(Gr. hairesis, usually rendered "heresy", Acts 24:14 ; 1 Chronicles 11:19 ; Galatians 5:20 , etc.), meaning properly "a choice," then "a chosen manner of life," and then "a religious party," as the "sect" of the Sadducees ( Acts 5:17 ), of the Pharisees ( 15:5 ), the Nazarenes, i.e., Christians ( 24:5 ). It afterwards came to be used in a bad sense, of those holding pernicious error, divergent forms of belief ( 2 Peter 2:1 ; Galatians 5:20 ).
second, a Christian of Thessalonica who accompanied Paul into Asia ( Acts 20:4 ).
a name sometimes applied to the prophets because of the visions granted to them. It is first found in 1 Samuel 9:9 . It is afterwards applied to Zadok, Gad, etc. ( 2 Samuel 15:27 ; 24:11 ; 1 Chronicles 9:22 ; 25:5 ; 2 Chr 9:29 ; Amos 7:12 ; Micah 3:7 ). The "sayings of the seers" ( 2 Chronicles 33:18 2 Chronicles 33:19 ) is rendered in the Revised Version "the history of Hozai" (marg., the seers; so the LXX.), of whom, however, nothing is known. (See PROPHET .)
to boil ( Exodus 16:23 ).
1. A Horite; one of the "dukes" of Edom ( Genesis 36:20-30 ).
2. The name of a mountainous region occupied by the Edomites, extending along the eastern side of the Arabah from the south-eastern extremity of the Dead Sea to near the Akabah, or the eastern branch of the Red Sea. It was originally occupied by the Horites ( Genesis 14:6 ), who were afterwards driven out by the Edomites ( Genesis 32:3 ; Genesis 33:14 Genesis 33:16 ). It was allotted to the descendants of Esau ( Deuteronomy 2:4 Deuteronomy 2:22 ; Joshua 24:4 ; 2 Chr 20:10 ; Isaiah 21:11 ; Exek 25:8 ).
=Se'lah, rock, the capital of Edom, situated in the great valley extending from the Dead Sea to the Red Sea ( 2 Kings 14:7 ). It was near Mount Hor, close by the desert of Zin. It is called "the rock" ( Judges 1:36 ). When Amaziah took it he called it Joktheel (q.v.) It is mentioned by the prophets ( Isaiah 16:1 ; Obadiah 1:3 ) as doomed to destruction.
It appears in later history and in the Vulgate Version under the name of Petra. "The caravans from all ages, from the interior of Arabia and from the Gulf of Persia, from Hadramaut on the ocean, and even from Sabea or Yemen, appear to have pointed to Petra as a common centre; and from Petra the tide seems again to have branched out in every direction, to Egypt, Palestine, and Syria, through Arsinoe, Gaza, Tyre, Jerusalem, and Damascus, and by other routes, terminating at the Mediterranean." (See EDOM .)
a word frequently found in the Book of Psalms, and also in Habakkuk 3:9 Habakkuk 3:13 , about seventy-four times in all in Scripture. Its meaning is doubtful. Some interpret it as meaning "silence" or "pause;" others, "end," "a louder strain," "piano," etc. The LXX. render the word by daplasma i.e., "a division."
cliff of divisions the name of the great gorge which lies between Hachilah and Maon, south-east of Hebron. This gorge is now called the Wady Malaky. This was the scene of the interview between David and Saul mentioned in 1Sam.26:13. Each stood on an opposing cliff, with this deep chasm between.
the sea-port of Antioch, near the mouth of the Orontes. Paul and his companions sailed from this port on their first missionary journey ( Acts 13:4 ). This city was built by Seleucus Nicator, the "king of Syria." It is said of him that "few princes have ever lived with so great a passion for the building of cities. He is reputed to have built in all nine Seleucias, sixteen Antiochs, and six Laodiceas." Seleucia became a city of great importance, and was made a "free city" by Pompey. It is now a small village, called el-Kalusi.
mentioned in the genealogy of our Lord ( Luke 3:26 ).