Hast thou forsaken me, a Syro-Chaldaic word, a part of our Saviorís exclamation on the cross, Mt 27:46; the whole is taken from Ps 22:1, where it is used prophetically.
Or rather Tsabaoth, hosts or armies.JEHOVAH SABAOTH is the Lord of Hosts; and we are to understand the word hosts in the most comprehensive sense, as including the host of heaven, the angels and minister of the Lord; the stars and planets, which, as an army ranged in battle array, perform the will of God; the armies of earth, whose conflicts his providence overrules to the accomplishment of his own wise designs; the hordes of inferior creatures, as the locusts that plagued Egypt, the quails that fed Israel, and "the canker-worm and the palmer-worm, his great army," Joe 2:15; and lastly, the people of the Lord, both of the old and new covenants, a truly great army, of which God is the general and commander, 2Sa 6:2 Ps 24:10 Ro 9:29 Jas 5:4.
Rest. God having created the world in six days, "rested" on the seventh, Ge 2:2,3; that is, he ceased from producing new beings in this creation; and because he had rested on it, he "blessed" or sanctified it, and appointed it in a peculiar manner for his worship.
We here have an account of theORIGINAL INSTITUTION of the day of rest. Like the institution of marriage, it was given to man for the whole race. Those who worshipped God seem to have kept the Sabbath from the first, and there are tokens of this in the brief sketch the Bible contains of the ages before the giving of the law at Mount Sinai. Noah sent forth the raven from the ark, and the dove thrice, at intervals of seven days, Ge 8:1-22. The account of the sending of manna in the desert proves that the Sabbath was already known and observed, Ex 16:22-30. The week was an established division of time in Mesopotamia and Arabia, Ge 29:27; and traces of it have been found in many nations of antiquity, so remote from each other and of such diverse origin as to forbid the idea of their having received it from Sinai and the Hebrews.
TheREENACTMENT of the Sabbath on Mount Sinai, among the Commandments of the Moral Law, was also designed not for the Jews alone, but for all whom should receive the word of God, and ultimately for all mankind. Christ and his apostles never speak of the decalogue but as of permanent and universal obligation. "The Sabbath was made for man." The fourth commandment is as binding as the third and the fifth. Certain additions to it, with specifications and penalties, were a part of the Mosaic civil law, and are not now in force, Ex 31:14 Nu 15:32-36. On the Sabbath-day, the priests and Levites, ministers of the temple, entered on their week; and those who had attended the foregoing week, went out. They placed on the golden table new loaves of showbread, and took away the old ones, Le 24:8. Also on this day were offered particular sacrifices of two lambs for a burnt offering, with wine and meal. The Sabbath was celebrated like the other festivals, from evening, Nu 28:9,10.
The chief obligation of the Sabbath expressed in the law is to sanctify it, Ex 20:8 De 5:12: "Remember the Sabbath-day to sanctify it." It is sanctified by necessary works of charity, by prayers, praises, and thanksgiving, by the public and private worship of God, by the study of his word, by tranquility of mind, and by meditation on moral and religious truth in its bearing on the duties of life and the hope of immorality. The other requirement of the law is rest: "Thou shalt not do any work." The ordinary business of life is to be wholly laid aside, both for the sake of bodily and mental health, and chiefly to secure the quiet and uninterrupted employment of the sacred hours for religious purposes. The spirit of the law clearly forbids all uses of the day which are worldly, such as amusements, journeys, etc., whereby one fails to keep the day holy himself, or hinders others in doing so.
TheCHRISTIAN SABBATH is the original day of rest established in the Garden of the Eden and reenacted on Sinai, without those requirements, which were peculiar to Judaism, but with all its original moral force and with the new sanctions of Christianity. It commemorates not only the creation of the world, but a still greater event-the completion of the work of atonement by the resurrection of Christ; and as he rose from the dead on the day after the Jewish Sabbath, that day of his resurrection has been observed by Christians ever since. The change appears to have been made at once and as is generally believed under the direction of the "Lord of the Sabbath." On the same day, the first day of the week, he appeared among his assembled disciples; and on the next recurrence of the day he was again with them, and revealed himself to Thomas. From 1Co 11:20 14:23,40, it appears that the disciples in all places were accustomed to meet statedly to worship and to celebrate the Lordís supper; and from 1Co 16:1,2, we learn that these meetings were on the first day of the week. Thus in Ac 20:6-11, we find the Christians at Troas assembled on the first day, to partake of the supper and to receive religious instruction. John observed the day with peculiar solemnity, Re 1:10; and it had then received the name of "The Lordís day," which it has ever since retained. For a time, such of the disciples as were Jews observed the Jewish Sabbath also; but they did not require this nor the observance of any festival of the Mosaic dispensation, of Gentile converts, nor even of Jews, Col 2:16. The early Christian fathers refer to the first day of the week as the time set apart for worship, and to the transfer of the day on account of the resurrection of the Savior. Pliny the younger, proconsul of Pontus near the close of the first century, in a letter to the emperor Trajan, remarks that the Christians were "accustomed on a stated day to meet together before daylight, and to repeat a hymn to Christ as God, and to bind themselves by a solemn bond not to commit any wickedness," etc. So well known was their custom, that the ordinary test question put by persecutors to those suspected of Christianity was "Hast thou kept the Lordís day?" to which the reply was, "I am a Christian; I cannot omit it." Justin Martyr observes that "on the Lordís day all Christians in the city or country meet together, because that is the day of our Lordís resurrection, and then we read the writings of the apostles and prophets; this being done, the person presiding makes an oration to the assembly, to exhort them to imitate and to practice the things they have heard; then we all join in prayer, and after that we celebrate the sacrament. Then they who are able and willing give what they think proper, and what is collected is laid up in the hands of the chief officer, who distributes it to orphans and widows, and other necessitous Christians, as their wants require." See 1Co 16:2. A very honorable conduct and worship. Would that it were more prevalent among us, with the spirit and piety of primitive Christianity!
The commandment to observe the Sabbath is worthy of its place in the decalogue; and its observance is of fundamental importance to society, which without it would fast relapse into ignorance, vice, and ungodliness. Its very existence on earth, by the ordinance of God, proves that there remains an eternal Sabbath in heaven, of which the "blest repose" of the day of God is an earnest to those who rightly observe it, Heb 4:9.
"The second Sabbath after the first," Lu 6:1, should rather read, "The first Sabbath after the second day of the pass-over." Of the seven days of the pass-over, the first was a Sabbath, and on the second was a festival in which the fruits of the harvest were offered to God, Le 23:5,9, etc. From this second day the Jews reckoned seven weeks or the first Sabbath which occurred after this second day, was called the first week or Sabbath after the second day.
The "preparation of the Sabbath" was the Friday before; for as it was forbidden to make a fire, to bake bread, or to dress victuals, on the Sabbath-day, they provided on the Friday every thing needful for their sustenance on the Sabbath, Mr 15:42 Mt 27:62 Joh 19:14,31,42.
For "a Sabbath-dayís journey," seeJOURNEY.
Was to be celebrated among the Jews once every seven years; the land was to rest, and be left without culture, Ex 23:10,11 Le 25:17. God appointed the observance of the Sabbatical year, to preserve the remembrance of the creation of the world; to enforce the acknowledgment of his sovereign authority over all things, particularly over the land of Canaan, which he had given to the Hebrews; and to inculcate humanity on his people, by commanding that they should resign to servants, to the poor, to strangers and to brutes, the produce of the fields, of their vineyards, and of their gardens. Josephus and Tacitus both mention the Sabbatical year as existing in their day. SeeJUBILEE.
This word represents two distinct people, who, in accordance with the original Hebrew, might have been more properly called Sebaeans and Shebaeans.
1. The first denotes the inhabitants of the country calledSEBA. This appears to have been the great island, or rather peninsula of Meroe, in northern Ethiopia, or Nubia, formed between the Nile and the Astaboras, now Atbara. Upon this peninsula lay a city of the like name, the ruins of which are still visible a few mile north of the modern Shendy. Meroe was a city of priests, whose origin is lost in the highest antiquity. The monarch was chosen by the priests from among themselves; and the government was being theocratic, being managed by the priest according to the oracle of Jupiter Ammon. This was the Seba of the Hebrews, according to Josephus, who mentions at the same time that it was conquered by Cambyses, and received from him the name Meroe, after his sister. With this representation accord the notices of Seba and its inhabitants in Scripture. In Ge 10:7, their ancestor is said to be a son of Cush, the progenitor of the Ethiopians. In Isa 43:3 and Ps 72:10, Seba is mentioned as a distant and wealthy country; in the former passage, it is connected with Egypt and Ethiopia; and Meroe was one of the most important commercial cities of interior Africa. These Sabeans are described by Herodotus as men of uncommon size. Compare Isa 45:14. A branch of this family, it is thought, located themselves near the head of the Persian Gulf; and the Sabeans mentioned in Job 1:15 were probably Cushites. See CUSH and RAAMAH.
2. The inhabitants of the country calledSHEBA. The Sheba of Scripture appears to be the Saba of Strabo, situated towards the southern part of Arabia, at a short distance from the coast of the Red Sea, the capital of which was Mariaba, or Mareb. This region, called also Yemen, was probably settled by Sheba the son of Joktan, of the race of Shem, Ge 10:28 1Ch 1:22.
The queen of Sheba, who visited Solomon, 1Ki 10:1-29 2Ch 9:1-31 Mt 12:42, and made him presents of gold, ivory, and costly spices, was probably the mistress of this region; indeed, the Sabeans were celebrated, on account of their important commerce in these very products, among the Greeks also, Job 6:19 Isa 60:6 Jer 6:20 Eze 27:22 38:13 Ps 72:10,15 Joe 3:8. The tradition of this visit of the queen of Sheba to Solomon has maintained itself among the Arabs, who call her Balkis, and affirm that she became the wife of Solomon.
Besides the Joktanite Sabaeans, two others of the same name are mentioned in the Bible. 1. A son of Jokshan, and grandson of Abraham and Keturah, Ge 10:28 2. A grandson of Cush. It is possible that these descendants of the Ethiopian Sheba may have had their residence in Africa; but the question of these two Shebas is obscure and difficult to determine. The Sebaeans and Shebaeans are both mentioned in the same prophecy, Ps 72:10, as coming to lay their offerings at the feet of Christ.
SABTH and SABTECHA
Sons of Cush, Ge 10:7. It cannot be decided whether they settled in Africa, Arabia, or southeastern Asia.
Sack is a pure Hebrew word, and has spread into many modern languages. Sackcloth is a very coarse stuff, often of hair, Re 6:12. In great calamities, in penitence, in trouble, the Jews, etc., wore sackcloth about their bodies, Ge 37:34; 2Sa 3:31; 1Ki 20:32; Mt 11:21. The prophets were often clothed in sackcloth, and generally in coarse clothing, Mt 11:21. The Lord bid Isaiah put off the sackcloth from about his body, and go naked, Isa 20:2. Zechariah says, Zec 13:4, that false prophets should no longer prophesy in sackcloth, (English translation, a rough garment,) to deceive the simple.
In time of joy, or on hearing good news, those who were clad in sackcloth cast it from them, and resumed their usual clothing, Ps 30:11.
An offering made to God on his altar, by the hand of a lawful minister. A sacrifice differed from an oblation; it was properly the offering up of a life; whereas an oblation was but a simple offering or gift. There is every reason to believe that sacrifices were from the first of divine appointment; otherwise they would have been a superstitious will-worship, which God could not have accepted as he did. SeeABEL. Adam and his sons, Noah and his descendents, Abraham and his posterity, Job and Melchizedek, before the Mosaic law, offered to God real sacrifices. That law did but settle the quality, the number, and other circumstances of sacrifices. Every one was priest and minister of his own sacrifice; at least, he was at liberty to choose what priest he pleased in offering his victim. Generally, this honor belonged to the head of a family; hence it was the prerogative of the firstborn. But after Moses this was, among the Jews, confined to the family of Aaron.
There was but one place appointed in the law for the offering of sacrifices by the Jews. It was around the one altar of the only true God in the tabernacle, and afterwards in the temple, that all his people were to unite in his worship, Le 17:4,9 De 12:5-18. On some special occasions, however, kings, prophets, and judges sacrificed elsewhere, Jud 2:5 6:26 13:16 1Sa 7:17 1Ki 3:2,3 18:33. The Jews were taught to cherish the greatest horror of human sacrifices, as heathenish and revolting, Le 20:2 De 12:31 Ps 106:37 Isa 66:3 Eze 20:31.
The Hebrews had three kinds of sacrifices:
1. The burnt-offering or holocaust, in which the whole victim was consumed, without any reserve to the person who gave the victim, or to the priest who killed and sacrificed it, except that the priest had the skin; for before the victims were offered to the Lord, their skins were flayed off, and their feet and entrails were washed, Le 1:1-17 7:8. Every burnt offering contained an acknowledgment of general guilt, and a typical expiation of it. The burning of the whole victim on the altar signified, on the part of the offerer, the entireness of his devotion of himself and all his substance to God; and, on the part of the victim, the completeness of the expiation.
2. The sin offering, of which the trespass offering may be regarded as a variety. This differed from the burnt-offering in that it always had respect to particular offences against law either moral through ignorance, or at least not in a presumptuous spirit. No part of it returned to him who had given it, but the sacrificing priest had a share of it, Le 4:1-6:30 7:1-10 3. Peace-offerings: these were offered in the fulfillment of vows, to return thanks to God for benefits, (thank-offerings,) or to satisfy private devotion, (freewill-offerings.) The Israelites accordingly offered these when they chose, no law obliging them to it, and they were free to choose among such animals as were allowed in sacrifice, Le 3:1-17 7:11-34. The law only required that the victim should be without blemish. He who presented it came to the door of the tabernacle, put his hand on the head of the victim, and killed it. The priest poured out the blood about the altar of burntsacrifices: he burnt on the fire of the altar the fat of the lower belly, that which covers the kidneys, the liver, and the bowels. And if it were a lamb, or a ram, he added to it the rump of the animal, which in that country is very fat. Before these things were committed to the fire of the altar, the priest put them into the hands of the offerer, then made him lift them up on high, and wave them toward the four quarters of the world, the priest supporting and direction his hands. The breast and the right shoulder of the sacrifice belonged to the priest that performed the service; and it appears that both of them were put into the hands of him who offered them, though Moses mentions only the breast of the animal. After this, all the rest of the sacrifice belonged to him who presented it, and he might eat it with his family and friends at his pleasure, Le 8:31. The peace offering signified expiation of sin, and thus reconciliation with God, and holy communion with him and with his people.
The sacrifices of offerings of meal or liquors, which were offered for sin, were in favor of the poorer sort, who could not afford to sacrifice an ox or goat or sheep, Le 5:10-13. They contented themselves with offering meal or flour, sprinkled with oil, with spice (or frankincense) over it. And the priest, taking a handful of this flour, with all the frankincense, sprinkled them on the fire of the altar; and all the rest of the flour was his own: he was to eat it without leaven in the tabernacle, and none but priests were to partake of it. As to other offerings, fruits, wine, meal, wafers, or cakes, or any thing else, the priest always cast a part on the altar; the rest belonged to him and the other priests. These offerings were always accompanied with salt and wine, but were without leaven, Le 2:1-16.
Offerings, in which they set at liberty a bird or a goat, were not strictly sacrifices, because there was no shedding of blood, and the victim remained alive.
Sacrifices of birds were offered on three occasions: 1. For sin, when the person offering was not rich enough to provide an animal for a victim, Le 5:7,8 2. For purification of a woman after childbirth, Le 12:6,7. When she could offer a lamb and a young pigeon, she gave both; the lamb for a burnt offering, the pigeon for a sin offering. But if she were not able to offer a lamb, she gave a pair of turtles, or a pair of young pigeons; one for a burnt offering, and the other for a sin offering. 3. They offered two sparrows for those who were purified from the leprosy; one was a burnt offering, the other was a scape-sparrow, as above, Le 14:4, etc Le 14:1 27:34.
For the sacrifice of the paschal lamb, seePASSOVER.
The perpetual sacrifice of the tabernacle and temple, Ex 29:38-40 Nu 28:3, was a daily offering of two lambs on the altar of burnt offerings; one in the morning, the other in the evening. They were burnt as holocausts, but by a small fire, that they might continue burning the longer. The lamb of the morning was offered about sunrise, after the incense was burnt on the golden altar, and before any other sacrifice. That in the evening was offered between the two evenings, that is, at the decline of day, and before night. With each of these victims was offered half a pint of wine, half a pint of the purest oil, and an assaron, or about five pints, of the finest flour.
Such were the sacrifices of the Hebrews-sacrifices of divine appointment, and yet altogether incapable in themselves of purifying the soul or atoning for its sins. Paul has described these and other ceremonies of the law "as weak and beggarly elements," Ga 4:9. They represented grace and purity, but they did not communicate it. They convinced the sinner of his necessity of purification and sanctification to God; but they did not impart holiness or justification to him. Sacrifices were only prophecies and figures of the sacrifice, the Lamb of God, which eminently includes all their virtues and qualities; being at the same time a holocaust, a sacrifice for sin, and a sacrifice of thanksgiving; containing the whole substance and efficacy, of which the ancient sacrifices were only representations. The paschal lamb, the daily burnt-offerings, the offerings of flour and wine, and all other oblations, of whatever nature, promised and represented the death of Jesus Christ, Heb 9:9-15 10:1. Accordingly, by his death he abolished them all, 1Co 5:7 Heb 10:8-10. By his offering of himself once for all, Heb 10:3, he has superseded all other sacrifices, and saves forever all who believe, Eph 5:2 Heb 9:11-26; while without this expiatory sacrifice, divine justice could never have relaxed its hold on a single human soul.
The idea of a substitution of the victim in the place of the sinner is a familiar one in the Old Testament, Le 16:21 De 21:1-8 Isa 53:4 Da 9:26; and is found attending all the sacrifices of animals, Le 4:20,26 5:10 14:18 16:21. This is the reason assigned why the blood especially, as being the very life and soul of the victim, was sprinkled on the altar and poured out before the Lord to signify its utter destruction in the sinnerís stead, Le 17:11. Yet the Jews were carefully directed not to rely on these sacrifices as works of merit. They were taught that without repentance, faith, and reformation, all sacrifices were an abomination to God, Pr 21:27 Jer 6:20 Am 5:22 Mic 6:6-8; that He desires mercy and not sacrifice, Ho 6:6 Mt 9:13, and supreme love to him, Mr 12:33. "To obey is better than sacrifice, and to hearken than the fat of rams," 1Sa 15:22 Pr 21:3 Mt 5:23. See also Ps 50:1-23. Then, as truly as under the Christian dispensation, it could be said, "The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit; a broken and a contrite heart, O God, thou wilt not despise," Ps 51:17. The Jews, without these dispositions, could not present any offering agreeable to God; and he often explains himself on this matter in the prophets, Ps 40:6 Isa 1:11-14 Ho 6:6 Joe 2:12-18 Am 5:21,22, etc.
The term sacrifices is sometimes used metaphorically with respect to the services of Christians; implying a giving up of something that was their own, and a dedication of it to the Lord, Ro 12:1 Php 4:18 Heb 13:15,16 1Pe 2:5.
Any profanation or abuse of things peculiarly sacred to God; such as robbing the house of God, or making it a den of thieves, Mt 21:12,13; Ro 2:2.
This name was applied in the time of Jesus to a portion or sect of the Jews, who were usually at variance with the other leading sect, namely, the Pharisees, but united with them in opposing Jesus and accomplishing his death,Mt 16:1-12; Lu 20:27. The name would seem to be derived from a Hebrew word signifying the just; but the Talmudists affirm that it comes from a certain Sadoc, or Sadducus, who was the founder of the sect, and lived about three centuries before the Christian era. The Sadducees disregarded all the traditions and unwritten laws which the Pharisees prized so highly, and professed to consider the Scriptures as the only source and rule of the Jewish religion. They rejected the demonology of the Pharisees; denied the existence of angles and spirits; considered the soul as dying with the body, and of course admitted no future state of rewards and punishments, Mt 22:23. While, moreover, the Pharisees believed that all events and actions were directed by an overruling providence or fate, the Sadducees considered them all as depending on the will and agency of man. The tenets of these freethinking philosophers were not, in general, so acceptable to the people as those of the Pharisees; yet many of the highest rank adopted them, and practiced great severity of manners and of life. Many members of the Sanhedrin were Sadducees, Ac 23:6-9; and so was the high priest in the time of Christ seems to have added bitterness to their hatred of Christianity, Ac 4:1; 5:17.
The common Crocus Sativus, a small bluish flower, whose yellow, thread-like stigmata yield an agreeable aromatic odor; and also the Indian saffron, So 4:14. In the East these were used in making a highly valued perfume, and also as a condiment and a stimulating medicine.
A holy person, a friend of God, either on earth or in heaven, De 33:2. It is sometimes used of the pious Israelites, as Ps 16:3 34:9. Nothing is more frequent in Paul than the name of saints given to all Christians, Ro 1:7 8:27 12:13 15:25,31 16:2. In this acceptation it continued during the early ages of Christianity; nor was it applied to individuals declared to be saints by any other act of the church than admission to its membership, till various corruptions had depraved the primitive principles. The church of Rome assumes the power of making saints; that is, of announcing certain departed spirits as objects of worship, from whom the faithful may solicit favors-a notion worthy of the dark ages in which it originated.
The chief city of the isle of Cyprus, visited by Paul and Barnabas, A. D. 48. This was the native isle of Barnabas, and many Jews resided there to whom the gospel had already been carried, Ac 4:36; 11:19,20; 21:16. Paulís visit was signalized by the miracle wrought on Elymas, and by the conversion of the governor, Sergius Paulus, Ac 13:5-12. Sakanus was a large city, situated on the east side of the island, and was afterwards called Constantia.
1Co 3:17, orSHEALTIEL, father of Zerubbabel, Ezr 3:2 Ne 12:1 Hag 1:1; one of the ancestors of Christ, named in both the gospel genealogies, Mt 1:14 Lu 3:27. See GENEALOGY.
A city of Bashan, conquered by the Jews and assigned to Manasseh, De 3:10 Jos 12:5 13:11. It was near the border of Gad, 1Ch 5:11, and where the boundary line between the two tribes ran out farthest into the desert. A town called Salchat still exists there, on the southeast border of the modern Hauran.
1. An ancient name of Jerusalem, Ge 14:18 Heb 7:1,3, afterwards applied to it poetically, Ps 76:2.
2. A city of the Shechemites, east of Sychar, Ge 33:18.
A town near Enon and the Jordan, south of Bethshean, Joh 3:23.
OrSALMAH 1Ch 2:11, a chief man of the tribe of Judah, husband of Rahab, and father of Boaz, Ru 4:20 Mt 1:4,5 Lu 3:32. See ZALMON.
A promontory at the northeast extremity of the island of Crete, now cape Sidero, Ac 27:7.
Wife of Zebedee, mother of James the elder and John the evangelist, one of those holy women of Galilee who attended our Savior in his journeys and ministered to him,Mt 20.20-23. Her conception as to the true nature of Christís kingdom were no doubt changed by his crucifixion, which she witnessed "afar off," and by his resurrection, of which she was early apprized by the angels at the tomb, Mr 15:40; 16:1. Some infer, from comparing Mt 27:56 and Joh 19:25, that she was a sister of Mary the mother of Jesus.
Salome was also the name of the daughter of Herodias.
Was procured by the Jews from the Dead Sea, wither from the immense hill or ridge of pure rock salt at its southwest extremity, or from that deposited on the shore by the natural evaporation. The Arabs obtain it in large cakes, two or three inches thick, and sell it in considerable quantities throughout Syria. It well-known preservative qualities, and its importance as a seasoning for food, Job 6:6, are implied in most of the passages where it is mentioned in Scripture: as in the miraculous healing of a fountain, 2Ki 2:21; in the sprinkling of salt over the sacrifices consumed on Godís altar, Le 2:13 Eze 43:24 Mr 9:49; and its use in the sacred incense, Ex 30:35. So also good men are "the salt of the earth," Mt 5:13; and grace, or true wisdom, is the salt of language, Mr 9:50 Col 4:6. See also Eze 16:4. To sow a land with salt, signifies its utter barrenness and desolation; a condition often illustrated in the Bible by allusions to the region of Sodom and Gomorrah, with its soil impregnated with salt, or covered with acrid and slimy pools,De 29.33; Job 39.9; Ezekiel 47.11; Zep 2.9.
Salt is also the symbol of perpetuity and incorruption. Thus they said of a covenant, "It is a covenant of salt for ever before the Lord," Nu 18:19 2Ch 13:5. It is also the symbol of hospitality; and of the fidelity due from servants, friends, guests, and officers, to those who maintain them or who receive them at their tables. The governors of the provinces beyond the Euphrates, writing to the king Artaxerxes, tell him, "Because we have maintenance from the kingís palace," Ezr 4:14.
VALLEY OF SALT. This place is memorable for the victories of David, 2Sa 8:13 1Ch 18:12 Ps 60:1-12, and of Amaziah, 2Ki 14:7, over the Edomites. There can be little doubt that the name designates the broad deep valley El-Ghor, prolonged some eight miles south of the Dead Sea to the chalky cliffs called Akrabbim. Like all this region, it bears the marks of volcanic action, and has an air of extreme desolation. It is occasionally overflowed by the bitter waters of that sea, which rise to the height of fifteen feet. The driftwood on the margin of the valley, which indicates this rise of the water, is so impregnated with salt that it will not burn; and on the northwest side of the valley lies a mountain of salt. Parts of this plain are white with salt; others are swampy, or marked by sluggish streams or standing pools of brackish water. The southern part is covered in part with tamarisks and coarse shrubbery. Some travellers have found here quicksand pits in which camels and horses have been swallowed up and lost, Ge 14:10 Zep 2:9. See JORDAN and SEA 3.
The usual formula of salutation among the Hebrews was Shalom lekha, that is, Peace be with thee. The same expression is the common one among the Arabs to the present day: they say, Salam lekha, to which the person saluted replies, "With thee be peace," Ge 29:6 Jud 18:15, margin. Hence we hear of the Arab and Turkish Salams, that is, salutations. Other phrases of salutation are found in Scripture, most of them invoking a blessing: as "The Lord be with thee;" "All hail," or Joy to thee; "Blessed be thou of the Lord."
These and similar phrases the oriental still use on all occasions with the most profuse and punctilious politeness. The letter of an Arab will be nearly filled with salutations; and should he come in to tell you your house was on fire, he would first give and receive the compliments of the day, and then say perhaps, "If God will, all is well; but your house is on fire." Their more formal salutations they accompany with various ceremonies or gestures; sometimes they embrace and kiss each other; sometimes an inferior kiss the hand or the beard of a superior, or bows low, with the hand upon the breast, and afterwards raises it to his lips or forehead. See Jacobís salutation of Esau, Ge 43:1-34; and compare Ge 19:1 23:7 42:6 1Sa 25:44 2Sa 1:2 Joh 20:26. The due and dignified performance of some of these ceremonious courtesies, especially when frequently recurring, requires much time; and hence, when the prophet sent his servant in great haste to lay his staff upon the dead child, he forbade him to salute any one, or answer any salutation by the way, 2Ki 4:29.
For a similar reason, our Savior forbade the seventy disciples to salute any one by the way, Lu 10:4, that is, in this formal and tedious manner, wasting precious time. Much of the oriental courtesy was superficial with it what was "better than life." "My peace I give unto you; not as the world giveth, give I unto you," Joh 14:27.
Means, strictly, deliverance; and so it is used of temporal deliverance, victory, in Ge 14:13 1Sa 14:45. But as the spiritual deliverance from sin and death, through the Redeemer, Mt 1:21, is a far greater salvation, so this word has come to be used mostly only in this moral and spiritual sense; and implies not only this deliverance, but also the consequences of it, namely, eternal life and happiness in the kingdom of out Lord, 2Co 7:10 Eph 1:13. It is most justly described as a "great salvation," Heb 2:3.
The Hebrews rarely use concrete terms, as they are called, but often abstract terms. Thus, instead of saying, God saves them and protects them, they say, God is their salvation. So, a voice of salvation, tidings of salvation, the rock of salvation, the shield of salvation, a horn of salvation, a word of salvation, etc., are equivalent to a voice declaring deliverance; the joy that attends escape from a great danger; a rock where any one takes refuge, and is in safety; a buckler that secures from the attack of an enemy; a horn or ray of glory, of happiness and salvation, etc. Thus, to work great salvation in Israel signifies to deliver Israel from some imminent danger, to obtain a great victory over enemies.
The "garments of salvation," Isa 61:10, refer to the splendid robes worn on festival days. The expression is used figuratively to denote the reception of a signal favor from God, such as deliverance from great danger.
1. One of the three divisions of the Holy Land in the time of our Savior, having Galilee on the north and Judea on the south, the Jordan on the east and the Mediterranean on the west, and occupying parts of the territory assigned at first to Ephraim, Mahasseh, and Issachar, Lu 17:11 Joh 4:4. It is described as having its hills less bare than those of Judea, and its valleys and plains more cultivated and fruitful. SeeCANAAN. Many gospel churches were early planted here, Ac 8:1,25 9:31 15:3.
2. A city situated near the middle of Palestine, some six miles northwest of Shechem. It was built by Omri king of Israel, about 920 B. C., and named after Shemer the previous owner of the mountain or hill on which the city stood,1Ki 16.23,24. It became the favorite residence of the kings of Israel, instead of Shechem and Thirzah the former capitals. It was highly adorned with public buildings. Ahab built there a palace of ivory, 1Ki 22:39, and also a temple of Baal, 1Ki 16:32,33, which Jehu destroyed, 2Ki 10:18-28. The prophets often denounced it for its idolatry, Isa 9:9 Eze 16:46-63. It was twice besieged by the Syrians, 1Ki 20:1-43 2Ki 6:24 7:1-20. At length Shalmanezer king of Assyria captured and destroyed the city, and removed the people of the land, B. C. 720, 2Ki 17:3-6 Ho 10:5-7 Mic 1:1-6. See OMRI. The city was in part rebuilt by Cuthits imported from beyond the Tigris, but was again nearly destroyed by John Hyrcanus. The Roman proconsul Gabinius once more restored it and calling it Gabinia; and it was afterwards given by Augustus to Herod the Great, who enlarged and adorned it, and gave it the name of Sebaste, the Greek translation of the Latin word Augusta, in honor of the emperor. He placed in it a colony of six thousand persons, surrounded it with a strong wall, and built a magnificent temple in honor of Augustus. Early in the apostolic age it was favored by the successful labors of Philip and others, Ac 8.5-25; and the church then formed continued in existence several centuries, till the city of Herod was destroyed. Sebaste was afterwards revived, and is mentioned in the histories of the Crusades. It is now an inconsiderable village, called Sebustieh, with a few cottages built of stones from the ancient ruins.
The following is the account of the modern city, as given by Richardson: "Its situation is extremely beautiful and strong by nature; more so, I think, than Jerusalem. It stands on a fine large insulated hill, compassed all round by a broad, deep valley; and when fortified, as it is stated to have been by Herod, one would imagine that in the ancient system of warfare nothing but famine would have reduced such a place. The valley is surrounded by four hills, one on each side, which are cultivated in terraces to the top, sown with grain and planted with fig and olive trees, as is also the valley. The hill of Samaria rises in terraces to a height equal to any of the adjoining mountains."
"The present village is small and poor, and after passing the valley, the ascent to it is very steep; but viewed from the station of our tents, it is extremely interesting, both from its natural situation and from the picturesque remains of a ruined convent of good Gothic architecture."
"Having passed the village, towards the middle of the first terrace there is a number of columns still standing. I counted twelve in one row, besides several that stood apart, the brotherless remains of other rows. The situation is extremely delightful, and my guide informed me that they belonged to the serai or palace. On the next terrace there are no remains of solid building, but heaps of stones and lime, and rubbish mixed with the soil in great profusion. Ascending to the third or highest terrace, the traces of former buildings were not so numerous, but we enjoyed a delightful view of the surrounding country. The eye passed over the deep valley that compassed the hill of Sebaste, and rested on the mountains beyond, that retreated as they rose with a gentle slope, and met the view in every direction, like a book laid out for perusal on a writingdesk."
The inhabitants of Samaria. But in the New Testament this name is the appellation of a race of people who sprung originally from an intermixture of the ten tribes with gentile nations. When the inhabitants of Samaria and of the adjacent country were carried away by Shalmanezer king of Assyria, he sent in their place colonies from Babylonia, Cuthah, Ava, Hamath, and Sepharvaim, with which the Israelites who remained in the land became intermingled, and were ultimately amalgamated into one people, 2Ki 17:24-41. An origin like this would of course render the nation odious to the Jews. The new and mixed race indeed sent to Assyria for an Israelitish priest to teach them the law of Jehovah, and adopted in part the forms of the true religion; but most of them were but half converted from their native heathenism, Mt 10:5 Lu 17:16-18. It was therefore in vain that, when the Jews returned from captivity and began to rebuild Jerusalem and the temple, the Samaritans requested to be acknowledged as Jewish citizens, and to be permitted to assist in their work, Ezr 4:1-24. In consequence of this refusal, and the subsequent state of enmity, the Samaritans not only took occasion to calumniate the Jews before the Persian kings, Ezr 4:4 Ne 4:1-23, but also, recurring to the directions of Moses, De 27:11-13, that on entering the promised land half of the people should stand on Mount Gerizim to respond Amen to the covenant pronounced by the Levites, they erected a temple on that mountain, and instituted sacrifices according to the prescriptions of the Mosaic law, although the original altar, according to the Hebrew Scriptures, stood on Mount Ebal, De 27:4 Jos 8:30-35. Moreover, they rejected all the sacred books of the Jews except the Pentateuch. SeeSANBALLAT.
From all these and other circumstances, the national hatred between the Samaritans and Jews, instead of being at all diminished by time, was, on the contrary, fostered and augmented Lu 9:52,53. Hence the name of Samaritan became among the Jews a term of reproach and contempt, Joh 8:48, and all intercourse with them was carefully avoided, Joh 4:9. The temple on Mount Gerizim was destroyed by Hyrcanus about the year 129 B. C.; but the Samaritans in the time of Christ continued to esteem that mountain sacred, and as the proper place of national worship, Joh 4:20,21, as is also the case with the small remnant of that people who exist at the present day. The Samaritans, like the Jews, expected a Messiah, Joh 4:25 and many of them became the followers of Jesus, and embraced the doctrines of his religion. See Ac 8:1 9:31 15:3.
It is well known that a small remnant of the Samaritans still exists at Nabulus, the ancient Shechem. Great interest has been taken in them by the learned of Europe; and a correspondence has several times been instituted with them which, however, has never led to results of any great importance. They have a copy of the Pentateuch, professedly made by Abishua the son of Phinehas, 1400 years before Christ. Several copies of this have been taken, first in 1616, and compared with the received Hebrew text, with which it nearly coincides. There are various classes of different readings, but few or none in which the Samaritan does not appear to be a corruption of the original. Of late years the remnant of Samaritans at Nabulus have often been visited by travellers. They number about one hundred and fifty souls, and are devout observers of the law. They keep the Jewish Sabbath with great strictness, and meet thrice during the day in their synagogue for public prayers. For times in each year, at the Passover, the Pentecost, the feast of Tabernacles, and the day of Expiation, they all resort to the site of their ancient temple on Mount Gerizim to worship. SeeGERIZIM.
An island of the Archipelago, on the coast of Asia Minor, opposite Lydia, from which it is separated by a narrow strait. The island was devoted to the worship of Juno, who had there a magnificent temple, fragments of which still exist. It was also celebrated for its valuable potteries, and as the birthplace of Pythagoras. The Romans wrote to the governor in favor of the Jews in the time of Simon Maccabaeus. Paul landed here when going to Jerusalem, A. D. 58, Ac 20:15. It now contains about fifty thousand inhabitants; and though ill-cultivated, is fruitful in oranges, grapes, and olives, and exports corn and wine.
An island in the North-Aegean Sea, on the coast of Thrace, nearly midway between Troas and Philippi. On his first visit to Europe, Paul anchored for the night on the north of the island, Ac 16:11. It was anciently called Samos; and in order to distinguish it from the other Samos, the epithet Thracian was added. Samothracia contained a lofty mountain and a city of the same name, and was celebrated for its devotion to the heathen mysteries, particularly to those of Ceres and Proserpine. Hence the island received the epithet of "sacred," and was regarded as an inviolable asylum for all fugitives and criminals. It is now called by the Turks Semendrek.
The son of Manoah, of the tribe of Dan, a deliverer and judge of the southern tribes of the Hebrews for twenty years, Jud 13:1; 16:31. His birth was miraculously foretold; he was a Nazarite from infancy and the strongest of men; and was equally celebrated for his fearless and wonderful exploits, for his moral infirmities, and for his tragical end. His exploits were not wrought without special divine aid; "the Spirit of God came mightily upon him," Jud 13:25 14:6,19 15:14 16:20,28. The providence of God was signally displayed in overruling for good the hasty passions of Samson, the cowardice of his friends, and the malice of his enemies. The sins of Samson brought him in great disgrace and misery; but grace and faith triumphed in the end, Heb 11:32. His story forcibly illustrates how treacherous and merciless are sin and sinners, and the watchful care of Christ over his people in every age. Compare Jud 13:22 Mt 23:37.
God hath heard, 1Sa 1:20, a child of prayer, the celebrated Hebrew prophet and judge, Ac 3:24 13:20. He was a Levite by birth, 1Co 6:20, and the son of Elkanah and Hannah, at Ramah in Mount Ephraim, northwest of Jerusalem. At a very tender age he was carried to Shiloh, and brought up beside the tabernacle under the care of Eli the high priest. Having been conserated to God from his birth, and devoted to Nazariteship, he began to receive divine communications even in his childhood, 1Sa 3:1-21; and after the death of Eli, he became established as the judge of Israel. He was the last and best of the Hebrew judges. We contemplate his character and administration with peculiar pleasure and reverence. The twelve tribes, when he assumed their charge, were in a low condition both morally and politically he freed them from all foreign yokes, administered justice with vigor and impartiality, promoted education and true religion, united the tribes, and raised them higher in the scale of civilization.
Their demand of a king, in view of the advanced age of Samuel and the vile character of his sons, showed a great want of faith in God and of submission to his will. Yet He granted them a king "in his wrath," Ho 13:11. Samuel anointed Saul as their first king; and afterwards David, who in due time was to take the place of Saul already, rejected by God. As long as he lived, Samuel exerted a paramount and most beneficial influence in Israel, even over Saul himself. He instituted the "schools of the prophets," which were long continued and very useful. He died at the age of ninety-eight, B. C. 1053, honored and lamented by all. Even after his death the unhappy Saul, forsaken by the God was pleased to cause Samuel to appear, with a prophetic message to the king. In Ps 99:6 he is ranked with Moses and Aaron. See also Jer 15:1 Heb 11:32.
The twoBOOKS OF SAMUEL could not all have been written by him, because his death is mentioned in 1Sa 25:1-43, B. C. 1055. Thus far it is not improbable that he was the author, while the remaining chapters are commonly attributed to Nathan and Gad, B. C. 1018. Why Samuelís name is given to both books cannot be known. In the Septuagint they are called the First and Second Books of Kings. See KINGS. The two books comprise the history of Samuel, Saul, and David. They are quoted in the New Testament, Ac 13:22 Heb 1:5, and alluded to in the Psalms, etc.
Probably a native of Hornaim in the land of Moab, and a great enemy of the Jews. He may have received from the Persian government some authority over the Samaritans of imported Cuthites, as one of the governors west of the Euphrates. When Nehemiah came from Shushan to Jerusalem, Ne 2:10,19, B. C. 454, and began to rebuild the walls of Jerusalem, Sanaballat, Tobiah, and Geshem taunted him, and sent to inquire on what authority he undertook this enterprise, and whether it were not a revolt against the king. Nehemiah nevereless proceeded with vigor in his undertaking, and completed the walls of the city, Ne 2:10 4:6.
Nehemiah being obliged to return to king Artaxerxes at Shushan, Ne 13:6, B. C. 441, in his absence the high priest Eliashib married his grandson Manasseh son of Joiada to a daughter of Sanballat and allowed Tobiah, a kinsman of Sanballat, an apartment in the temple. Nehemiah, on his return to Jerusalem, (the exact year of which is not known,) drove Tobiah out of the temple, and would not suffer Manasseh the high priestís grandson to continue in the city, nor to perform the functions of the priesthood. Manasseh being thus expelled retired to his father-in-law Sanballat, who provided him the means of exercising his priestly office on Mount Gerizim. SeeGERIZIM and SAMARITANS.
To make holy, or to set apart for God, Ge 2:3 Ex 19:23. Ub the Old Testament, sanctification frequently denotes the ceremonial or ritual consecration of any person or thing to God: thus the Hebrews as a people were holy unto the Lord, through the covenant with its rites and atoning sacrifices, Ex 31:13; and the Jewish tabernacle, altar, priest, etc., were solemnly set apart for the divine service, Le 8:10-12. In the similar sense, men, "sanctified themselves" who made special preparation for the presence and worship of God, Ex 19:10,11 Nu 11:18; a day was sanctified when set apart for fasting and prayer, Joe 1:14; and the Sabbath was sanctified when regarded and treated as holy unto the Lord, De 5:12. All such sanctifications were testimonials to the holiness of God, and signified menís need of moral sanctification, or the devotion of purified and obedient souls to his love and service.
In a doctrinal sense, sanctification is the making truly and perfectly holy what was before defiled and sinful. It is a progressive work of divine grace upon the soul justified by the love of Christ. The believer is gradually cleansed from the corruption of his nature, and is at length presented "unspotted before the throne of God with exceeding joy." The Holy Spirit performs this work in connection with the providence and word of God, Joh 14:26 17:17 2Th 2:13 1Pe 1:2 and the highest motives urge every Christian not to resist him, and seek to be holy even as God is holy. The ultimate sanctification of every believer in Christ is a covenant mercy purchased on the cross. He, who saves us from the penalty of sin, also saves us from its power; and in promising to bring a believer into heaven, engages also to prepare for heaven.
A holy place devoted to God. It appears to be the name sometimes of the entire temple, Ps 73.17; Heb 9.1; sometimes of the "Holy place," where the altar on incense, the golden candlestick, and the showbread stood,2Ch 26:18 Heb 9:2; and sometimes of the "Holy of Holies," the most secret and retired part of the temple, in which was the ark of the covenant, and where none but the high priest might enter, and he only once a year on the day of solemn expiation. The same name was also given to the most sacred part of the tabernacle set up in the wilderness, Le 4:6. See TABERNACLE, and TEMPLE.
The temple or earthly sanctuary is an emblem of heaven, Ps 102:19 Heb 9:1,24; and God himself is called a sanctuary, Isa 8:14 Eze 11:16, in reference to the use of temples as a place of refuge for fugitives, because he is the only safe and sacred asylum for sinners pursued by the sword of divine justice.
Mr 6:9. The ordinary oriental sandal is a mere sole, of leather or wood, fastened to the bottom of the foot by thongs, one passing around the great toe and over the fore part of the foot, and the other around the ankle. The sole was sometimes plaited of some vegetable fibre, or cut from a fresh undressed skin; and the "shoelatchet" or thong, and indeed the whole sandal, was often of very little value, Ge 14:23 Am 2:6 8:6. Sandals are usually intended where "shoes" are spoken of in resembling our slipper, and sometimes a wooden shoe with a high heel. The Bedaween wears only a sandal.
The sandals of females were frequently much ornamented, So 7:1, and probably resembled the slippers or light shoes of modern orientals, which cover the upper part of the foot, and are often made of morocco, or of embroidered work wrought with silk, silver, and gold, Eze 16:10. SeeBADGERíS SKINS.
It is not customary in the East to wear shoes or sandals in the houses; they are always taken off on entering a house, and especially temples and all consecrated places. Hence the phrase, "to loose oneís shoes from off oneís feet," Ex 3:5 De 25:9 Jos 5:15. Visitors of the highest rank leave their slippers at the door; and on entering a Mohammedan mosque each worshipper adds his slippers to the pile in charge of the doorkeeper, unless attended by a servant. On the summit of Mount Gerizim, the Samaritans who accompanied Dr. Robinson took off their shoes as they approached the site of their ruined temple. To bind on the sandals denoted preparation for a journey, Ex 12:11 Ac 12:8. To bind on the sandals, to stoop down and unloose them, or to carry them until again needed, was the business of the lowest servants; a slave, newly bought, commenced his service by loosing the sandals of his new master, and carrying them a certain distance. Disciples sometimes performed this office for their master, and accounted it an honor; hence the expression of John the Baptist, that he was not worthy to loose or to carry the sandals of Jesus, Mt 3:11 Mr 1:7. See alsoFOOT, with reference to washing the feet. The poor of course often went barefoot but this was not customary among the rich, except as a sign of mourning,
2Sa 15:30 Isa 20:2-4 Eze 24:17,23. In the primitive days of the Israelitish commonwealth the custom, in transferring real estate, was, that the seller drew off his shoes and gave it to the buyer before witnesses, in confirmation of the bargain, Ru 4:7-11. The loosing of a shoe of one who refused to marry the widow of his deceased brother, and spitting upon the ownerís face, was a ceremony prescribed in the Jewish law, De 25:7-10.
OrBETHDIN, house of judgment, was a council of seventy senators among the Jews, usually with the addition of the high priest as president, who determined the most important affairs of the nation. It is first mentioned by Josephus in connection with the reign of John Hyrcanus II, B. C. 69, and is supposed to have originated after the second temple was built, during the cessation of the prophetic office, and in imitation of Mosesí council of seventy elders, Nu 11:16-24. The room, in which they met, according to the rabbins, was a rotunda, half of which was built without the temple, that is, without the inner court of Israel, and half within, the latter part being that in which the judges sat. The Nasi, or president, who was generally the high-priest, sat on a throne at the end of the hall; the vice-president, or chief counselor, called Ab-bethdin, at his right hand; and the sub-deputy, or Hakam, at his left; the other senators being ranged in order on each side. Most of the members of this council were priests or Levites, though men in private stations of life were not excluded. See SADDUCEES.
The authority of the Sanhedrin was very extensive. It decided causes brought before it by appeal from inferior courts; and even the king, the high priest, and the prophets, were under its jurisdiction. The general affairs of the nation were also brought before this assembly, particularly whatever was in any way connected with religion or worship, Mr 14:55 15:1 Ac 4:7 5:41 6:12. Jews in foreign cities appear to have been amenable to this court in matters of religion, Ac 9:2. The right of judging in capital cases belonged to it, until this was taken away by the Romans a few years before the time of Christ, Joh 18:31. The Sanhedrin was probably the "council" referred to by our Lord, Mt 5:22. There appears also to have been and inferior tribunal of seven members, in every town, for the adjudication of less important matters. Probably it is this tribunal that is called "the judgment" in Mt 5:22.
A gem next in hardness and value to the diamond, and comprising, as varieties, all those precious stones known by the name of oriental gems, namely, the oriental ruby, oriental topaz, and oriental emerald, Joh 21:25. In general the name of sapphire is given to the blue variety, which is either of deep indigo blue, or of various lighter tints, Ex 24:10, and sometimes gradually passes into perfectly white or colorless, which, when cut, may also pass for a diamond, Ex 28:18; 39:11; Re 21:19.
OrSARA, the wife of Abraham, the daughter of his father by another mother, Ge 20:12. Most Jewish writers, however, and many interpreters, identify her with Iscah, the sister of Lot, and Abrahamís niece, Gen 11.29; the word "daughter" according to Hebrew usage, comprising any female descendant, and "sister," any female relation by blood. When God made a covenant with Abraham, he changed the name of Sarai or my princess, into that of Sarah, or princess; and promised Abraham a son by her, which was fulfilled in due time.
The most prominent points of her history as recorded in the Bible are, her consenting to Abrahamís unbelieving dissimulation while near Pharaoh and Abimelech; her long-continued barrenness; her giving to Abraham her maid Hagar as a secondary wife; their mutual jealousy; and her bearing Isaac in her old age, "the child of promise," Ge 12:1-23:20. She appears to have been a woman of uncommon beauty, and a most exemplary and devoted wife. Her docility is eulogized in 1Pe 3:6, and her faith in Heb 11:11. See also Isa 51:2 Ga 4:22-31. Sarah lived to the age of one hundred and twenty-seven years. She died in the valley of Hebron, and Abraham came to Beer-sheba to mourn for her, after which he bought a field of Ephron the Hittite, wherein was a cave hewn in the rock, called Machpelah, where Sarah was buried, Ge 23:9.
Now called Sart, a city of Asia Minor, formerly the capital of Croesus king of Lydia, proverbial for the immensity of his wealth. It was situated at the foot of Mount Tmolus on the north, having a spacious and delightful plain before it, watered by several streams that flow from the neighboring hill and by the Pactolus. It lay upon the route of Xerxes to Greece; and its inhabitants were noted for their profligacy, Re 3:4. It is now a pitiful village, but contains a large khan for the accommodation of travellers, it being the road for the caravans that come out of Persia to Smyrna with silk. The inhabitants are for the most part shepherds, who have charge of the numerous flocks and herds, which feed in the plains.
To the southward of the town are very considerable ruins still remaining, chiefly those of a theatre, a stadium, and two churches. The height on which the citadel was built is shattered by an earthquake. There are two remarkable pillars, remnants, it is thought, of an ancient temple of Cybele, built only three hundred years after Solomonís temple. These ruins, and the countless sepulchral mounds in the vicinity, remind us of what Sardis was, before earthquake and the sword had laid it desolate.
The Turks have a mosque here, formerly a Christian church, at the entrance of which are several curious pillars of polished marble. Some few nominal Christians still reside here, working in gardens, or otherwise employed in such like drudgery. The church in Sardis was reproached by our Savior for its declension in vital religion. It had a name to live, but was really dead, Re 3:1-6.
OrSARDINE, a species of precious stone of a blood red, or sometimes of a flesh-color. It is more commonly known by the name of carnelian, Ex 28:17 Re 4:3.
As if a sardius united to an onyx; a species of gem exhibiting the reddish color of the carnelian and the white of the chalcedony, intermingled either in shades or in alternate circles, Re 21:20.
Isa 20:1-4, one of the later Assyrian kings, who sent his general, Tartan, with an army against Ashdod, and took it. The northwest palace at Nimroud in the ruins of Nineveh was built by him. There is some doubt whether he is or is not to be identified with one of the kings elsewhere mentioned in Scripture; and some regard him as having reigned for about three years between Shalmaneser and Sennacherib. Others think he was the same as Shalmaneser, which see.
Signifies, properly, adversary, enemy, 1Ki 11:14 Ps 109:6, and is so applied by Jesus to Peter, Mt 16:23 Mr 8:33. Hence it is used particularly of the grand adversary of souls, the devil, the prince of the fallen angels, the accuser and calumniator of men before God, Job 1:7,12 Zec 3:1,2 Re 12:10. He seduces them to sin, 1Ch 21:1 Lu 22:31; and is thus the author of that evil, both physical and moral, by which the human race is afflicted, especially of those vicious propensities and wicked actions which are productive of so much misery, and also of death itself, Lu 13:16 Heb 2:14. Hence Satan is represented both as soliciting men to commit sin, and as the source, the efficient cause of impediments which are thrown in the way of the Christians religion, or which are designed to diminish its efficacy in reforming the hearts and lives of men, and inspiring them with the hope of future bliss, Mt 4:10 Joh 13:27 Ro 16:20 Eph 2:2. SeeDEVIL.
The "synagogue of Satan," Re 2:9,13, probably denotes the unbelieving Jews, the false zealots for the Law of Moses, who at the beginning were the most eager persecutors of the Christians. They were very numerous at Smyrna, to which church John writes.
In Greek mythology, were imaginary demons, half men and half goats, believed by the superstitious to haunt forests and groves. The Hebrew word translates satyrs in Isa 13:21 34:14, means hairy, shaggy creatures, such as wild goats, or perhaps monsters of the ape family. It is translated "goats" in Le 4:24, and "devils" in Le 17:7. The gambols of these wild animals on the ruins of Babylon mark is as an uninhabited and lonely waste. SeeAPE.
The son of Kish, of the tribe of Benjamin, the first king of the Israelites, anointed by Samuel, B. C. 1091, and after a reign of forty years filled with various events, slain with his sons on Mount Gilboa. He was succeeded by David, who was his son-in-law, and whom he had endeavored to put to death. His history is contained in 1Sa 10:1-31:13. It is a sad and admonitory narrative. The morning of his reign was bright with special divine favors, both providential, and spiritual, 1Sa 9:20 10:1-11,24,25. But he soon began to disobey God, and was rejected as unworthy to found a line of kings; his sins and misfortunes multiplied, and his sun went down in gloom. In his first war with the Ammonites, God was with him; but then follow his presumptuous sacrifice, in the absence of Samuel; his equally rash vow; his victories over the Philistines and the Amalekites; his sparing Agag and the spoil; his spirit of distracted and foreboding melancholy; his jealousy and persecution of David; his barbarous massacre of the priests and people at Nob, and of the Gibeonites; his consulting the witch on Endor; the battle with the Philistines in which his army was defeated and his sons were slain; and lastly, his despairing self-slaughter, his insignia of royalty being conveyed to David by an Amalekite, 1Sa 31:1-13 2Sa 1:1-27 1Ch 10:13,14. The guilty course and the awful end of this first king of the Hebrews were a significant reproof of their sin in desiring any king but Jehovah; and also show to what extremes of guilt and ruin one may go who rebels against God, and is ruled by his own ambitious and envious passions.
SAULwas also the Hebrew name of the apostle Paul.
Is a term applied preeminently to our Lord Jesus Christ, because, as the angel expressed it, he came to "save his people from their sins," Mt 1:21. He was therefore calledJESUS, which signifies Savior, Joh 4:42 Ac 4:15 5:31.
An agreeable taste or odor, or that quality of objects which appeals to the sense of smell or of taste, Mt 5:13. The sacrifice of Noah and that of Christ were acceptable to God, like the odor of a sweet incense to a man, Ge 8:21 Eph 5:2. The chief savor of the apostlesí teaching was welcome by some to their eternal life, and rejected by others to their aggravated condemnation, 2Co 2:15,16.
HebrewAZAZEL, a word used only in connection with the ceremonies of the great Day of Atonement, Le 16:8,10,26, as to the derivation and meaning of which there has been great diversity of opinion. The safest and best interpretation is, that the goat itself symbolically bore away the sins of Godís people from His presence and remembrance, Ps 103:12. See EXPIATION.
A color much prized by the ancients, Ex 25:4 26:1,31,36. It is assigned as a merit of Saul, that he clothed the daughters of Israel in scarlet, 2Sa 1:24. So the diligent and virtuous woman is said to clothe her household in scarlet, Pr 31:21. The depth and strength of the color are alluded to in Isa 1:18; and it is used as a symbol of profligacy in Re 17:3,4. This color was obtained from the Coccus Ilicis of Linnaeus, a small insect found on the leaves of a species of oak, the Quercus Cocciferus, in Spain and the countries on the eastern part of the Mediterranean, which was used by the ancients for dyeing a beautiful crimson or deep scarlet color, and was supposed by them to be the berry of a plant or tree. It is the Kermez of the Materia Medica. As a dye it has been superseded in modern times by the cochineal insect, Coccus Cactus, which gives a more brilliant but less durable color. SeePURPLE.
A "rod" or decorated staff, sometimes six feet long, borne by kings and magistrates as a symbol of authority, Ge 49:10 Nu 24:17 Es 4:11 5:2 Isa 14:5 Zec 10:11. SeeROD.
A Jew at Ephesus, a leader among the priests, perhaps the head of one of the twenty-four courses. His seven sons pretended to practice exorcism, and presumed to call on evil spirits to come out from persons possessed, in the name of Jesus. Their ignominious discomfiture by a man possessed by and evil spirit, promoted the cause of the gospel at Ephesus, Ac 19:14-16.
A rent or fissure; generally used in the New Testament to denote a division within the Christian church, by contentions and alienated affections, without an outward separation into distinct bodies, 1Co 1:10-12 12:25,26. The sin may lie on the side of the majority, or of the minority, or both. It is a sin against Christian love, and strikes at the heart of Christianity, Joh 17:21 Ro 12:4-21.
1Co 4:15 Ga 3:24,25, in Greek Paidagogos; a sort of attendant who took the charge of young children, taught them the rudiments of knowledge, and at a suitable age conducted them to and from school. Thus the law was the pedagogue of the nation, and a length conducting them through its types and prophecies to Christ. When a Jew came to a believing knowledge of Christ, this office of the law ceased.
Little is known respecting the schools of the Jews, nor when and how far they took the place of domestic instruction, De 6:7-9 11:18-20. It is probable that elementary education was under the charge of the minister of religion, as well as the instruction of those of riper years. At the time of Christ, it would appear that the Jews in general were able at least to read and write.
Lu 10:19, one of the largest and most malignant of all the insect tribes. It somewhat resembles the lobster in its general appearance, but is much more hideous. Those found in Southern Europe seldom exceed two inches in length; but in tropical climates it is not uncommon thing to meet with them five or six times as long. They live upon other insects, but kill and devour their own species also. Maupertuis put about a hundred of them together in the same glass and in a few days there remained but fourteen, which had killed and devoured all the rest. He enclosed a female scorpion in a glass vessel, and she was seen to devour her young as fast as they were born. There was only one of the number that escaped the general destruction by taking refuge on the back of its parent; and this soon after revenged the cause of its brethren, by killing the old one in its turn. Such is the terrible nature of this insect; and it is even found that when placed in circumstances of danger, from which it perceives no way of escape, it will sting itself to death. The passage most descriptive of the scorpion is Re 9:3-10, in which it is to be observed that the sting of these creatures was not to produce death, but pain so intense that the wretched sufferers should seek death, Re 9:6, rather than submit to its endurance. Dr. Shaw states that the sting of scorpions is not always fatal, the malignity of their venom being in proportion to their size and complexion.
The poison is injected by means of a sharp curved sting at the end of the six-jointed tail. It occasions great pain, inflammation, and hardness, with alternate chills and burning. These animals frequent dry and hot places, and lie under stones and in the crevices of old ruins. The Jews encountered them in the wilderness, De 8:15, and a range of cliffs across the hot valley south of the Dead Sea, called Acrabbim, or scorpions, appears to have been much infest be them. The scorpion of Judea, when curled up, greatly resembles an egg in size and shape; hence the comparison and the contrast in Lu 11:11,12. The scorpions which the haughty Rehoboam threatened to use instead of whips, 1Ki 12:11, were probably scourges armed with knobs like the joints of a scorpionís tail; and like the sting of that animal, occasioned extreme pain.
Or Whip. The punishment of scourging was very common among the Jews. Our Savior was subjected to this barbarous and ignominious torture, which was at times so sever as to end in death, Joh 19:1. Moses limits the number of stripes to forty, which might never be exceeded, De 25:1-3. The Jews afterwards, in order to avoid in any case exceeding forty, and thus breaking the law, were accustomed to give only thirty-nine stripes, or thirteen blows with a scourge of three thongs. There were two ways of giving the lash: one with thongs or whips made of rope-ends, or straps of leather sometimes armed with iron points; the other with rods or twigs. The offender was stripped from his shoulders to his middle, and tied by his arms to a low pillar, that he might lean forward, and the executioner the more easily strike his back; or, according to the modern custom in inflicting the bastinado, was made to lie down with his face to the ground, De 25:2.
Paul informs us, 2Co 11:24, that at five different times he received thirty-nine stripes from the Jews; and in the next verse, shoes that correction with rods was different from that with a whip; for he says, "Thrice was I beaten with rods." The bastinado with rods was sometimes given on the back, at others on the soles of the feet.
In the earlier Hebrew writings, was one skilled in writing and accounts, Ex 5:6 Jud 5:14 Jer 52:25; the person who communicated to the people the commands of the king, like the modern Secretary of State, 2Sa 8:17 20:25. In the later times of the Old Testament, especially after the captivity, and in the New Testament, a scribe is a person skilled in the Jewish law, a teacher or interpreter of the law. So Ezra was "a ready scribe in the laws of Moses," Ezr 7:6 1Ch 27:32. The scribes of the New Testament were a class of men educated for the purpose of preserving and expounding the sacred books. They had the charge of transcribing them, of interpreting the more difficult passages, and of deciding in cases which grew out of the ceremonial law, Mt 2:4, and were especially skilled in those glosses and traditions by which the Jews made void the law, Mt 15:1-6. Jewish writers speak of them as the schoolmasters of the nation; and one mode in which they exercised their office was by meeting the people from time to time, in every town, for the purpose of holding familiar discussions, and raising questions of the law for debate.
Their influence was of course great; many of them were members of the Sanhedrin, and we often find them mentioned in connection with the elders and chief priests, Mt 5:20 7:29 12:38 20:18 21:15. Like the Pharisees, they were bitterly opposed to Christ, and joined with the priests and counselors in persecuting him and his followers, having little knowledge of Him concerning whom Moses and the prophets did write. The same persons who are termed scribes, are in parallel passages sometimes called lawyers and doctors of the law, Mt 22:35 Mr 12:28. Hence "scribe" is also used for a person distinguished for learning and wisdom,1Co 1.20.
A bag or wallet, in which travellers carried a portion of food, or some small articles of convenience, 1Sa 17:40; Mt 10:10.
OrSCRIPTURES, the writings, that is, by eminence; the inspired writings, comprising the Old and New Testaments. See BIBLE.
Wandering tribes in the immense regions north and northeast of the Black and Caspian Seas. They are said by Herodotus to have made an incursion into Southwestern Asia and Egypt, some seven hundred years before Christ; and it was perhaps a fragment of this host, located at Bethshean, which gave that city its classical name Scythopolis. In Col 3:11, "Scythian" appears to signify the rudest of barbarians.
The Hebrews give the name of sea to any large collection of water, Job 14:11; as to the lakes of Tiberias and Asphaltites, and also to the rivers Nile and Euphrates, Isa 11:15 18:2 21:1 Jer 51:36,42. The principal seas mentioned in Scripture are the following:
1. TheGREAT SEA, the Mediterranean, called also the Hinder or Western Sea. Indeed, the Hebrew word for sea, meaning the Mediterranean, is often put for the west. The Great Sea is 2,200 miles long, and in the widest part 1,200 miles in width. In many places it is so deep as to give no soundings. It is little affected by tides, but is often agitated by violent winds. The prevailing direction of the wind in spring is from the southeast and southwest and from the northeast and northwest the rest of the year.
2. TheRED SEA, Ex 10:19 13:18 Ps 106:7,9,22, derived its name from Edom, which lay between it and Palestine; or from the hue of the mountains on its western coast, or of the animalcule which float in masses on its surface. It lies between Arabia on the east and northeast, and Abyssinia and Egypt on the west and southwest, and extends from the straits of Babelmandel to Suez, a distance of about 1,400 miles, with an average width of 150 miles, and a depth of 1,800 feet. At the northern end it is divided into the two gulfs Suez and Akaba, anciently called the Gulf of Heroopolis and the Elanitic Gulf. The first of these is 190 miles in length and the second is 100 miles. Between these gulfs lies the celebrated peninsula of Mount Sinai. That of Akaba is connected with the Dead Sea by the great sand valley El Arabah described under the article JORDAN. It is only these gulfs of the Red Sea that are mentioned in Scripture. The Israelites, in their exodus out of Egypt, miraculously crossed the western gulf south of Suez, and then, after many years of sojourning and wandering in the deserts of the peninsula and north of it, they came to Ezion-geber, at the extremity of the eastern gulf. See EXODUS and WANDERINGS. In Zec 10:11, both the Red Sea and the Nile appear to be mentioned.
3. TheDEAD SEA, also called The Salt sea, Ge 14:3; The sea of the Plain, De 4:40; The Eastern sea, Zec 14:8; by the Greeks and Romans, lake Asphaltites; and by the modern Arabs, The sea of Lot. It lay at the southeast corner of the Holy Land, and receives the wastes of the Jordan from the north, and of the Arnon and several smaller streams from the east. It is over forty miles long, and eight or nine miles wide, and lies as in a chaldron between bare limestone cliffs, which rise on the west side 1,200 or 1,500 feet above its surface, and on the east side 2,000 feet or more. At the south end is a broad and low valley, overflowed after the annual rains. The general aspect of the region is dreary, sterile, and desolate; but at a few points there are brooks or fountains of fresh water, which in their way to the sea pass through spots of luxuriant verdure, the abode of birds in great numbers.
The waters of the Dead Sea are clear and limpid, but exceedingly salt and bitter. Their specific gravity exceeds that of all other waters known, being one-fifth or one-fourth greater than that of pure water. They are found by repeated analyses to contain one-fourth their weight of various salts, chiefly the chlorides of magnesium and sodium. Salt also is deposited by evaporation on the shore, or on garments wet in the sea. In the bed of the sea it is found in crystals and near the shore in incrustation deposited on the bottom. No fish can live in these acrid waters, and those which are brought down by the Jordan quickly die. Compare Eze 47:8-10, where the healing of this deadly sea, and its abounding in fish, as well as the new fertility and beauty of the dreary wilderness between it and Jerusalemóby means of the healing power of the Kidron flowing from beside that altar of Godóforcibly illustrate the healing and renovating power of gospel grace.
A person unacquainted with the art of swimming floats at ease upon the surface of lake Asphaltites, and it requires an effort to submerge the body. The boat of Lieutenant Lynch met with a gale on entering it from the Jordan; and "it seemed at if the bows, so dense was the water, were encountering the sledgehammers of the Titans, instead of the opposing waves of an angry sea."
At times, and especially after earthquakes, quantities of asphaltum are dislodged from the bottom, rise and float on the surface, and are driven to the shores, where the Arabs collect them for various uses. Sulphur is likewise found on the shores and a kind of stone or coal, called Musca by the Arabs, which on being rubbed exhales an intolerable odor. This stone, which also comes from the neighboring mountains, is black, and takes a fine polish. Maundrell saw pieces of it two feet square, in the convent of St. John in the Wilderness, carved in bas-relief, and polished to as great a lustre as black marble is capable of. The inhabitants of the country employ it in other places of public resort. In the polishing its disagreeable odor is lost. When placed by Mr. King upon hot coals, a strong stench of sulphur issued from it, and it soon began to blaze. The blaze rose four or five inches high, and continued about two minutes.
An uncommon love of exaggeration is observable in all the older narratives, and in some of modern date, respecting the nature and properties of the Dead Sea. Chateaubriand speaks of a "dismal sound proceeding from this lake of death, like the stifled clamors of the people ingulfed in its water," and says that its shores produce a fruit beautiful to the sight, but containing nothing but ashes; and that the heavy metals float on the surface of the sea. Others allege that black and sulphurous exhalations are constantly issuing from the water, and that birds attempting to fly across it are struck dead by its pestiferous fumes. These legends are corrected by more reliable accounts, which show that the birds fly over or float upon the sea uninjured; that no vapor is exhaled from its surface, except that caused by the rapid evaporation or its waters under the hot sun; and that the low level and excessive heat of the valley of the Jordan and the Dead Sea account for the diseases prevailing there, without imagining any more fearful cause. The "apostle of Sodom" above referred to by Chateaubriand, and described by Josephus and others answer, with some exaggerations, to fruits now growing around the Dead Sea.
In 1848, Lieutenant Lynch of the United Statesí navy passed down the Jordan from the Sea of Tiberias, with two metallic boats, and spent three weeks in a survey of the Sea of Sodom. He found it nearly 1,300 feet deep and its surface more than 1,300 feet below the level of the Mediterranean. From the eastern side, some eight miles from the south end, a low promontory projects three-fourths of the way towards the western cliffs, and sends up a point five miles towards the north. Below this point the lake becomes suddenly shallow, the southern bay not averaging more than twelve or fifteen feet in depth, Jos 15:2.
This lower part is believed to cover the sites of the cities destroyed by fire from heaven, Sodom, Gomorrah, Admah, and Zeboim. The vale of Siddim was once a smiling plain, well-watered, and like a garden of the Lord, Ge 13:10; it is now, and for all future ages, a monument of his just indignation, De 29:23, and an awful warning to reckless sinners that the day of the Lord will come upon them also suddenly and without remedy, Mt 10:15 11:22-24 2Pe 2:4-9 Jude 1:7. The bottom of the shallow bay is a deep slimy mud, Ge 14:10. On its southwest border lies a mountain or ridge composed chiefly of rock salt, and called Usdum or Sodom, between which and the sea stands a round pillar of salt forty feet high, reminding one of Lotís wife.
At present the Dead Sea has no perceptible outlet, and the waters poured into it by the Jordan are probably evaporated by the intense heat of the unclouded sun, or in part absorbed in the earth. It is thought by some that the northern and principal part of the sea was the product of some convulsion of nature, long before that which destroyed Sodom and formed the south bay; that the Jordan at first flowed into the Red Sea through the remarkable crevasse which extends from its sources to the Gulf of Akabah; and that at some period beyond the reach of history, its bed and valley sunk down to their present level and formed the Dead Sea. Lieutenant Lynch in sounding discovered a ravine in the bed of the sea, corresponding to the channel of the Jordan in its valley north of the sea. SeeJORDAN.
4. TheSEA OF TIBERIAS or of Galilee; the lake of Gennesareth, or of Cimmereth, Nu 34:11, is so called from the adjacent country, or from some of the principal cities on its shores. It resembles, in its general appearance, the Lake of Geneva in Switzerland, though not so large. The Jordan passes through it from north to south. It is twelve or fourteen miles long, six or seven miles in breadth, and 165 feet deep. Its waters lie in a deep basin, surrounded on all sides by rounded and beautiful hills, from 500 to 1,000 feet high, except the narrow entrance and outlet of the Jordan at either end. Its sheltered location protects it in some degree from the wind, but it is liable to sudden squalls and whirlwinds, and many travellers on its shores have met with violent tempests-reminding them of those encountered by Christ and his disciples. A strong current marks the passage of the Jordan through the middle of the lake, on its way to the Dead Sea. The volcanic origin of the basin of this lake is strongly inferred from numerous indications, such as the black basaltic rocks which abound, frequent and violent earthquakes, and several hot springs. According to Lieutenant Symonds, it is 328 feet below the level of the Mediterranean. Lieutenant Lynch makes it 653 feet below. Its waters are clear and sweet, and contain various kinds of excellent fish in great abundance. The appearance of the sea from the hills on the western shore is far less grand and more beautiful than that of the Dead Sea. It should be seen in spring, when the hills around it are clothed with grain and festooned wit flowers. The towns that once crowed its shores with a teeming population, the groves and shrubbery that covered its hills, and the boats and galleys that studded its surface are gone. But the sea remains, hallowed by many scenes described in the gospels. The Saviour of mankind often looked upon its quiet beauty and crossed it in his journeys; he stilled its waves by a word, and hallowed its shores by his miracles and teachings. Here several of the apostles were called to become "fishers of men," Mt 4:18 14:22 Lu 8:22 Joh 21:1.
"How pleasant to me thy deep blue wave,
O sea of Galilee,
For the glorious One who came to save
Hath often stood by thee.
O Savior gone to Godís right hand,
Yet the same Savior still,
Graved on thy heart is this lovely strand
And every fragrant hill."
5.SEA or WATERS OF MEROM. See MEROM.
TheBRAZEN or MOLTEN SEA, made by Solomon for the temple, was
a circular vessel at least fifteen feet in diameter, which stood in
the court of the temple, and contained three thousand baths,
according to 2Co 4:5, or two thousand baths according to 1Ki
7:26. Calmet supposes this may be reconciled by saying that the cup
or bowl contained two thousand baths, and the foot or basin a
thousand more. It was supported by twelve oxen of brass, and was
probably the largest brazen vessel ever made-an evidence of the skill
of the workers in metal at that period. It contained from 16,000 to
24,000 gallons, and was supplied with water either by the labor of
the Gibeonites, or as Jewish writers affirm, by a pipe from the well
of Etam, so that a constant flow was maintained. This water was used
for the various ablutions of the priests, 1Ch 4:6; a perpetual
and impressive testimony from God of the necessity of moral
purification in the inexhaustible foundation of Christís grace. The
preceding engraving must be chiefly imaginary.
The allusions and references to seals and sealing are frequent in the sacred writings. Seals or signets were in use at a very early period, and they were evidently of various kind. Some were used as a substitute for signing oneís name, the ownerís name or chosen device being stamped by it with suitable ink on the document to be authenticated. Seals to be used for this purpose, with or without the sign manual, appear to have been worn by the parties to whom they respectively belonged. The seal of a private person was usually worn on his finger, or his wrist, or in a bracelet, being small in size, Jer 32:10 Lu 15:22 Jas 2:2. SeeRINGS.
The seal of a governor was worn by him, or carried about his person in the most secure manner possible. The royal seal was either personal, to the king, or public, to the state; in other words, the seal of the king and the seal of the crown, 2Sa 1:10: the first the king retained; the latter he delivered to the proper officer of state. So far modern usages enable us to comprehend clearly the nature of this important instrument. The impress of the royal seal on any document gave it the sanction of government, 1Ki 21:8; and a temporary transfer of the seal to another hand conveyed a plenary authority for the occasion, Es 3:10,12 8:2. Instead of the impression of a seal, probably on account of the heat of the climate, Job 38:14. The seal was a token of possession and of careful preservation, De 32:34 Job 9:7 14:17. A portion of clay covering the lock or opening of a door, etc., guarded it from being opened clandestinely, So 4:12 Da 6:17 Mt 27:66. Travellers in the East have met the same custom in modern times. The cord around a book, box, or roll of parchment was often secured with a sea, Isa 8:16 Re 5:1. The Holy Spirit seals Christians, impressing his image upon them as a token that they are his, Eph 1:13,14 4:30. SeeSO.
The first month of the Jewish civil year, and the eleventh of the ecclesiastical year-from the new moon of February to that of March. SeeMONTH. They began in this month to the years of the trees they planted, the fruits of which were esteemed impure till the fourth year, Zec 1:7.
From a Latin word answering to the Greek word hoeresis, which latter our translators have in some places rendered "sect," in others "heresy." As used in the New Testament, it implies neither approbation nor censure of the persons to whom it is applied, or of their opinions, Ac 5:17 15:5. Among the Jews, there were four sects, distinguished by their practices and opinions, yet united in communion with each other and with the body of their nation: namely, the Pharisees, the Sadducees, and the Essenes, and the Herodians. Christianity was originally considered as a new sect of Judaism; hence Tertullus, accusing Paul before Felix, says that he was chief of the seditious sect of the Nazarenes, Ac 24:5; and the Jews of Rome said to the apostle, when he arrived in this city, "As concerning this sect, we know that everywhere it is spoken against," Ac 28:22. SeeHERESY.
A disciple at Thessalonica, who accompanied Paul in some of his journeys, Ac 20:4.
A popular tumult, Ac 24:5, or a religious faction, Ga 5:20. The same Greek word is translated "insurrection," in speaking of Barabbas, Mr 15:7, and "dissension" in Ac 15:2.
Ge 1:11; often used figuratively in Scripture, Da 9:1 1Pe 1:23 1Jo 3:9. There was an injunction in the Mosaic Law against sowing a field with mingled seed of diverse kinds, Le 19:19. The "precious seed" is often committed to the ground with many fears; but the harvest, at least in spiritual things, shall be a season of joy, Ps 126:5,6.
One supernaturally enlightened to see things which God only can reveal; applied to certain Hebrews prophets, 1Sa 9:9 2Ch 29:30 33:18,19 Isa 29:10 30:10. Compare Nu 24:3,4.
1. A mountain of Judah, near Kirjath-jearim, Jos 15:10.
2. A Horite, one of the primitive rulers of the country south and southeast of the Dead Sea, Ge 36:20 De 2:12.
3. A mountainous tract lying between the southern extremity of the Dead Sea and the eastern gulf of the Red Sea. Mount Hor formed part of Seir, and is the only part that retains its original name. SeeIDUMEA.
The name of a place mentioned in 2Ki 14:7, where it is said that Amaziah king of Judah slew ten thousand men of Edom, in the valley of Salt, and took Sela by war, and called the name of itJOKTHEEL, subdued by God. Sela, in Hebrew, signifies, a rock, and answers to the Greek word Petra; whence it has been reasonably inferred that the city bearing the name of Petra, and which was the celebrated capital of Arabia Petraea, is the place mentioned by the sacred historian. It is also mentioned in Isa 16:1, and may be intended by the word Sela, translated rock, in Jud 1:36 Isa 42:11. The ruins of this place were in modern times first visited by Burckhardt, 1812, and attest the splendor of the ancient city. He says, "At the distance of a two long daysí journey northeast from Akabah, is a rivulet and valley in the Djebel Shera, on the east side of the Arabah, called Wady Mousa. This place is very interesting for its antiquities and the remains of an ancient city, which I conjecture to be Petra, the capital of Arabia Petraea, a place which, as far as I know, no European traveller has ever visited. In the red sandstone of the which the valley is composed are upwards of two hundred and fifty sepulchres, entirely cut out of the rock, the greater part of them with Grecian ornaments. There is a mausoleum in the shape of a temple, of colossal dimensions, likewise cut out of the rock, with all its apartments, its vestibule, peristyle, etc. It is a most beautiful specimen of Grecian architecture, and in perfect preservation. There are other mausolea with obelisks, apparently in the Egyptian style, a whole amphitheater cut out of the rock, with the remains of a palace and of several temples. Upon the summit of the mountains, which closes the narrow valley on its western side, (Mount Hor,) is the tomb of Haroun, or Aaron. It is held in great veneration by the Arabs." That this was indeed the ancient Sela or Petra is established by various concurring proofs; Josephus, Eusebius, and Jerome affirm that the location and ruins correspond with the notices given in the Bible, and by Pliny and Strabo.
Subsequent travellers, especially Laborde, have given minute and graphic description of this wonderful city, with drawings of the principal ruins. The valley of Petra, 2,200 feet above the great valley El-Arabah, is about a mile long from north to south, and half a mile wide, with numerous short ravines in its sides, making its whole circuit perhaps four miles. It is accessible through ravines at the north and the south; but the cliffs, which define it on the east and west, are precipitous, and vary from two hundred to one thousand feet in height. The main passage into the city is on the east, and begins between cliffs forty feet high and fifty yards apart, which soon become higher, nearer, and full of excavated tombs. This winding ravine is a mile long, and gives entrance to a small brook; its sides at one place are but twelve feet apart and two hundred and fifty feet high. At the termination of this narrow gorge you confront the most splendid of all the structures of Petra, el-Khusneh, the temple mentioned by Burckhardt, hewn out of the face of the opposite cliff. Here you enter a wider ravine, which leads northwest, passes the amphitheatre in a recess on the left, and at length opens on the great valley of the main city towards the west. The tombs excavated in these, and in all the side gorges, are without number, rising range above range; many of them are approached by steps cut in the rock, while others are inaccessible, at the height of nearly four hundred feet. The theatre was so large as to accommodate more than three thousand persons. The palace, called Pharaohís house by the Arabs, is the chief structure not excavated in the mountain that survives in any good degree the ravages of time; it was evidently a gorgeous building. Most of the valley is strewn with the ruins of public edifices and with fragments of pottery. The brook flows through the valley towards the west, and passes off through a narrow gorge like that by which it entered. One of the finest temples, the Deir, stands high up in a ravine on the west side. It is hewn out of the solid rock, are eight feet in diameter. A singular charm is thrown over the whole by the beauty of the stone from which these various structures are wrought. It is fine and soft sandstone, variegated with almost every variety of hues, red, purple, black, white, azure, and yellow, the deepest crimson and the softest pink blending with each other, while high above the sculptured monuments the rocks rise in their native rudeness and majesty. The whole strange and beautiful scene leaves on the spectatorís mind impressions, which nothing can efface.
Petra was an ancient city, a strong fortress, and for many ages an important commercial center. It was the chief city among scores, which once filled that region. Yet the prophets of God foretold its downfall, and its abandonment to solitude and desolation, in terms which strikingly agree with the facts. "Thy terribleness hath deceived thee, and the pride of thy heart, O thou that dwellest in the clefts of the rock, that holdest the height of the hill: though thou shouldest make thy nest as high as the eagle, I will bring thee down from thence, saith the Lord," Jer 49:7-22. See also Isa 34:5-15 Eze 35:1-15 Joe 3:19 Am 1:11,12 Ob 1:3-16. When its ruin took place we are not informed. There were Christian churches there in the fifth and sixth centuries, but after A. D. 536 no mention is made of it in history.
A musical term which occurs seventy-three times in the Psalms, and is found also in Hab 3:3,9,13. It usually occurs at the end of a period or apostrophe, but sometimes at the end only of a clause. This difficult word, it is now generally believed, was a direction for a meditative pause in the singing of a psalm, during which perhaps there was an instrumental interlude.
Ac 5:21. SeeSANHEDRIN.
A name given to Mount Hermon by the Amorites, De 3:9 1Ch 5:23 Eze 27:5. SeeHERMON.
King of Assyria, son and successor of Shalmaneser, began to reign B. C. 710, and reigned but a few years. Hezekiah king of Judah having shaken off the yoke of the Assyrians, by which Ahaz his father had suffered under Tigloth-pileser, Sennacherib marched an army against him, and took all the strong cities of Judah. Hezekiah, seeing he had nothing left but Jerusalem, which he perhaps found it difficult to preserve, sent ambassadors to Sennacherib, then besieging and destroying Lachish, to make submission. Sennacherib accepted his tribute, but refused to depart, and sent Rabshakeh with an insolent message to Jerusalem. Hezekiah entreated the Lord, who sent a destroying angel against the Assyrian army, and slew in one night 185,000 men. Sennacherib returned with all speed to Nineveh, and turned his arms against the nations south of Assyria, and afterwards towards the north. But his career was not long; within two or three years from his return from Jerusalem, while he was paying adorations to his god Nisroch, in the temple, his two sons Adrammelech and Sharezer slew him and fled into Armenia. Esar-haddon his son reigned in his stead, 2Ki 18:1-19:37 2Ch 32:33.
A most remarkable confirmation of the above Bible history has been found in the long buried ruins of ancient Nineveh. The mound called Kouyunijik, opposite Mosul, has been to a good degree explored, and its ruins prove to be those of a palace erected by this powerful monarch. The huge stone tablets which formed the walls of its various apartments are covered with bas-reliefs and inscriptions; and though large portions of these have perished by violence and time, the fragments that remain are full of interest. One series of tablets recounts the warlike exploits of Sennacherib, who calls himself "the subduer of kings from the upper sea of the setting sun to the lower sea of the rising sun," that is, from the Mediterranean to the Persian Gulf.
The most important of these mural pages to Bible readers, are those recounting the history of his war against Syria and the Jews, in the third year of his reign. Crossing the upper part of Mount Lebanon, he appears to have conquered Tyre and all the cities south of it on the seacoast to Askelon. In this region he came in conflict with an Egyptian army, sent in aid of King Hezekiah; this host he defeated and drove back. See 2Ki 19:9 Isa 37:1-38. The inscription then proceeds to say, "Hezekiah king of Judah, who had not submitted to my authority, forty-six of his principal cities, and fortresses and villages dependant upon them, of which I took no account, I captured, and carried away their spoil. The fortified towns, and the rest of his towns which I spoiled, I severed from his country, and gave to the kings of Askelon, Ekron, and Gaza, so as to make his country small. In addition to the former tribute imposed upon their countries, I added a tribute the nature of which I fixed." Compare 2Ki 18:13 Isa 36:1. He does not profess to have taken Jerusalem itself, but to have carried away Hezekiahís family, servants, and treasures, with a tribute of thirty talents of gold and eight hundred talents of silver. The amount of gold is the same mentioned in the Bible narrative. The three hundred talents of silver mentioned in Scripture may have been all that was given in money, and the five hundred additional claimed in the Ninevite record may include the temple and palace treasures, given by Hezekiah as the price of peace.
In another apartment of the same palace was found a series of wellpreserved bas-reliefs, representing the siege and capture by the Assyrians of a large and strong city. It was doubly fortified, and the assault and the defense were both fierce. Part of the city is represented as already taken, while elsewhere the battle rages still in all its fury. Meanwhile captives are seen flayed, impaled, and put to the sword; and from one of the gates of the city a long procession of prisoners is brought before the king, who is gorgeously arrayed and seated on his throne upon a mound or low hill. They are presented by the general in command, very possibly Rabshakeh, with other chief officers. Two eunuchs stand behind the king, holding fans and napkins. Above his head is an inscription, which is thus translated: "Sennacherib the mighty king, king of the country of Assyria, sitting on the throne of judging at the gate of the city Lachisa; I give permission for its slaughter." The captives are stripped of their armor, ornaments, and much of their clothing, and are evidently Jews.
Little did Sennacherib then anticipate the utter of his ruin of his own proud metropolis, and still less that the ruins of his palace should preserve to this remote age the tablets containing his own history, and the image of his god Nisroch so incapable of defending him, to bear witness for the God whom he blasphemed and defied. SeeNINEVEH, NISROCH, SHALMANESER, and SO.
"A mountain of the East," a boundary of the Joktanite tribes, Ge 10:30. It is perhaps the same as Mount Sabber in Southwestern Arabia.
A place in Asia Minor near the Bosphorus, to which Jewish captives were conveyed, Ob 1:20.
When Shalmaneser king of Assyria carried away Israel from Samaria to beyond the Euphrates, he sent people in their stead into Palestine, among whom were the Sepharvaim, 2Ki 17:24,31. That Sepharvaim was a small district under its own king, is apparent from 2Ki 19:13; Isa 37:13. It may, with most probability, be assigned to Mesopotamia, because it is named along with other places in that region, and because Ptolemy mentions a city of a similar name, Sipphara, as the most southern of Mesopotamia.
The seventy, is the name of the most ancient Greek version of the Old Testament, and is so called because there were said to have been seventy translators.
The accounts of its origin disagree, but it should probably be assigned to the third century before Christ. This ancient version contains many errors, and yet as a whole is a faithful one, particularly in the books of Moses; it is of great value in the interpretation of the Old Testament, and is very often quoted by the New Testament writers, who wrote in the same dialect. It was the parent of the first Latin, the Coptic, and many other versions, and was so much quoted and followed by the Greek and Roman fathers as practically to supersede the original Hebrew, until the last few centuries. The chronology of the Septuagint differs materially from that of the Hebrew text, adding, for example, 606 years between the creation and the deluge. SeeALEXANDRIA.
A place of burial. The Hebrews were always very careful about the burial of their dead. Many of their sepulchres were hewn in rocks: as that of Shebna, Isa 22:16; those of the kings of Judah and Israel; and that in which our Savior was laid on Calvary. These tombs of the Jews were sometimes beneath the surface of the ground; but were often in the side of a cliff, and multitudes of such are found near the ruins of ancient cities, 2Ki 23:16 Isa 22:16. Travellers find them along the bases of hills and mountains in all parts of Syria; as on the south side of Hinnom, the west side of Olivet, at Tiberias, in Petra, in the gorge of the Barada, and in the sea-cliffs north on the Acre. The tombs, as well as the general graveyards, were uniformly without the city limits, as is apparent at this day with respect to both ancient and modern Jerusalem, 2Ki 23:6 Jer 26:23 Lu 7:12 Joh 11:30. SeeACELDAMA.
The kings of Judah, almost exclusively, appear to have been buried within Jerusalem, on Mount Zion, 1Ki 2:10 2Ki 14:20 2Ch 16:14 28:27 Ac 2:29. Family tombs were common, and were carefully preserved, Ge 50:5-13 Jud 8:32 2Sa 2:32 1Ki 13:22. Tombstones with inscriptions were in use, Ge 35:20 2Ki 23:16,17. Absalom was buried under a heap of stones, 2Sa 18:17. In many ancient heathen nations, a king was buried under a vast mound, with his arms, utensils, horses, and attendants, Eze 32:26,27; and the pyramids of Egypt are believed to be the tombs of kings, each having but one or two apartments, in one of which the stone coffin of the builder has been found.
It was thought an act of piety to preserve and adorn the tombs of the prophets, but was often an act of hypocrisy and our Savior says that the Pharisees were like whited sepulchres, which appeared fine without, but inwardly were full of rottenness and corruption, Mt 23:27-29; and Lightfoot has shown that every year, after the winter rains were over, the Hebrews whitened them anew. In Lu 11:44, Christ compares the Pharisees to "grave which appear not," so that men walk over them without being aware of it, and many thus contract an involuntary impurity. A superstitious adoration of the tombs and bones of supposed saints was then and is now a very prevalent form of idolatry; and our Savior tells the Jews of his day they were as guilty as their fathers, Lu 11:47,48: they built the sepulchres of the prophets, their fathers slew them; the hypocritical idolatry of the sons was as fatal a sin as the killing of the prophets by their fathers. These worshippers of the prophets soon afterwards showed that they allowed the deeds of their fathers, by crucifying the divine Prophet who Moses had foretold. In Syria at the present day the tomb of David on Mount Zion and that of Abraham at Hebron are most jealously guarded, and any intruder is instantly put to death; while almost all the laws of God and man may be violated with impunity. Deserted tombs were sometimes used as places of refuge and residence by the poor, Isa 65:4 Lu 8:27; the shepherds of Palestine still drive their flocks into them for shelter, and wandering Arabs live in them during the winter. SeeBURIAL.
Maundrellís description of the sepulchre north of Jerusalemósupposed by many to be the work of Helena queen of Adiabene, though now known as "the tombs of the kings,"ómay be useful for illustrating some passages of Scripture:
"The next place we came to was those famous grots called the sepulchres of the kings; but for what reason they go by that name is hard to resolve; for it is certain none of the kings, either of Israel or Judah, were buried here, the holy Scriptures assigning other places for their sepulchres. Whoever was buried here, this is certain that the place itself discovers so great an expense, both of labor and treasure, that we may well suppose it to have been the work of kings. You approach to it at the east side through an entrance cut out of the natural rock, which admits you into an open court of about forty paces square, cut down into the rock with which it is encompassed instead of walls."
"On the west side of the court is a portico nine paces long and four broad, hewn likewise out of the natural rock. This has a kind of architrave, running along its front, adorned with sculpture, of fruits and flowers, still discernible, but by time much defaced. At the end of the portico, on the left hand, you descend to the passage into the sepulchres. The door is now so obstructed with stones and rubbish, that it is a thing of some difficulty to creep through it. But within you arrive in a large fair room, about seven yards square, cut out of the natural rock. Its sides and ceiling are so exactly square, and its angles so just, that no architect, with levels and plummets, could build a room more regular. And the whole is so firm and entire that it may be called a chamber hallowed out of one piece of marble. From this room you pass into, I think, six more, one within another, all of the same fabric with the first. Of these the two innermost are deeper than the rest, having a second descent of about six or seven steps into them. In every one of these rooms, except the first, were coffins of stone placed in niches in the sides of the chambers. They had been at first covered with handsome lids, and carved with garlands; but now most of them were broken to pieces by sacrilegious hands."
A daughter of Asher, thrice named among those who migrated to Egypt, Ge 46:17; Nu 26:46; 1Ch 7:30. Why she was thus distinguished is unknown, but the rabbis have many fables respecting her.
The name of six persons, alluded to in the following passages: 2Sa 8:17; 2Ki 25:18; Ezr 7:1; Jer 36:26; 40:8; 51:59. The last is termed "a quiet prince" or "chief chamberlain." He bore to the Jews in Babylon a message from the prophet Jeremiah.
Burning ones, celestial beings surrounding the throne of God. Compare De 4:24 Heb 12:29. They appear to be distinguished from the cherubim, Eze 1:5-12. The prophet Isaiah, Isa 6:2,3, represents them as reverently adoring the triune God, and burning with zeal to fly and execute his will. Each one had six wings, with two of which he covered his face, with two his feet, and with the two others he flew. They cried to one another, and said, "Holy, holy, holy is the Lord of hosts; the whole earth is full of his glory!"
Ac 16:35, properly Roman lictors, public servants who bore a bundle of rods, sometimes with an axe in the center, before the magistrates of cities and colonies as insignia of their office, and who executed the sentences which their masters pronounced.
Proconsul or governor of the isle of Cyprus, was converted under the ministry of Paul, A. D. 48, Ac 13:7.
These reptiles, unclean among the Hebrews, Le 11:10,41, are widely diffused through the world, but are most numerous and venomous in tropical climates. About one-sixth part of all that are known to be poisonous. These are distinguished by having two hollow poisonfangs in the upper jaw, and are usually of slower motion than most snakes. Venomous serpents were abundant in Egypt and Arabia, and seven different kinds are mentioned in the Hebrew scriptures, some of which are identified with existing species. SeeADDER, ASP, COCKATRICE, and VIPER.
The serpents mentioned in Nu 21:1-35 Isa 14:29 30:6, and by whom multitudes of the Israelites were destroyed in the desert north of the Gulf of Akabah, were probably called "fiery" and "flying" with reference to the agonizing heat caused by their poison, and the rapidity of their darting motion. Herodotus indeed speaks of winged serpents as appearing every spring on the Arabian border of Egypt; but he did not see them, nor are there any to be met with in modern times. The serpent of brass, made and erected on a pole by Moses, had no healing virtue in itself, but was a test of the penitence and faith of the people. The author of Ecclesiasticus says of the Israelites, "They were troubled for a small season that they might be admonished, having a sign of salvation to put them in remembrance of the commandment of thy law. For he that turned towards it was not saved by the thing that he saw, but by thee, that art the Savior of all." Our Savior himself shows that the brazen serpent was a type of Him, Joh 3:14,15. The believing view of Christ is salvation to the soul infected by the fatal poison of sin. Respecting the brazen serpent, seeNEHUSHTAN. Hezekiah destroyed a true and most sacred relic; Rome, on the contrary, fabricates false relics and adores them. See CHARMERS.
Interpreters have largely speculated concerning the nature of the serpent that tempted Eve. Some have thought that serpents originally had feet and speech; but there is no probability that this creature was ever otherwise than it now is. Its subtle, crafty malignity is often alluded to the Scriptures, Ge 3:1 Mt 10:16 22:33. Besides, it cannot be doubted but that by the serpent we are to understand the devil, who employed the serpent as a vehicle to seduce the first woman, Ge 3:13 2Co 11:3 Re 12:9.
A descendant of Shem, and an ancestor of Abraham, Ge 11:20-23; Lu 3:35. Jewish tradition says he was the first of his line that fell into idolatry, Jos 24:2.
This word sometimes denotes a man who voluntarily dedicates himself to the service of another. Thus Joshua was the servant of Moses; Elisha of Elijah; and Peter, Andrew, Philip, and Paul were servants of Jesus Christ. The servants of Pharaoh, of Saul, and of David, were their subjects in general, and their court officers and counselors in particular. The Philistines, Syrians, and other nation were servants of David, that is, they obeyed and paid him tribute. The servants of God are those who are devoted to his service and obey his holy word.
In its primary sense, the word usually means in the Bible either a hired servant, or one whose service was the property of his master for a limited time and under various restrictions. Joseph is the first whom we read of as sold into bondage, Ge 37:27,28. The households of some of the early patriarchs contained many servants, who were apparently treated with kindness and justice; the highest trusts were sometimes confided to them, and they might inherit their masterís estate, Ge 14:11-16 15:2-4 24:1-10. They shared the religious privileges of the household, Ge 17:9-13,27 18:19, and were not transferred to other masters.
At the establishment of the Hebrew commonwealth, involuntary servitude was everywhere prevalent; and so far as it existed among the Jews, Moses sought to bring it under the restrictions demanded by religion and humanity. The mildest form of bond-service was that of a Hebrew in the house of another Hebrew. He might become bound to this service in various ways, chiefly through poverty, Ex 21:7 Le 25:39-47; to acquit himself of a debt he could not otherwise pay,2Ki 4:1; to make restitution for a theft, Ex 22:3; or to earn the price of his ransom for captivity among heathen. This form of service could not continue more than six or seven years; unless, when the Sabbatical year came round, the servant chose to remain permanently or until the Jubilee with his master, in token of which he suffered his ear to be bored before witnesses, Ex 21:2,6 25:40. The Hebrews servant was not to be made to serve with rigor, nor transferred to any harder bondage; he had an appeal to the tribunals, a right to all religious privileges, the power of demanding release on providing a pecuniary equivalent, and a donation from his master at his release, Le 25:47-55 De 15:12-18. Compare also 2Ch 28:10,11 Ne 5:1-13 Jer 34:8-22. The law likewise provided for the deliverance of a Hebrew, who was in bondage to a resident foreigner, Le 25:47-54.
From the heathen around and among them, especially from their captive enemies and the remains of the Canaanites, the Hebrew obtained many servants. These were protected by law, De 1:16,17 27:19, and might become proselytes, attend the festivals, enjoy religious instruction and privileges, Ex 12:44 De 12:18 29:10-13 31:10-13. The servant who was mutilated by his master was to be set free, Ex 21:26,27; the refugee from foreign oppression was to be welcomed, De 23:15,16; and kidnapping or man stealing was forbidden on pain of death, Ex 21:16 De 24:7 1Ti 1:10.
Roman slavery, as it existed in the time of Christ, was comparatively unknown to the Jews. The Romans held in bondage captives taken in war, had purchased slaves. Their bondage was perpetual, and the master held unquestioned control of the person and life of his slaves. Yet large numbers were set free, and in many instances Roman freedmen rose to the highest honors.
The allusion of the Bible to involuntary servitude, imply that it is an evil and undesirable condition of life; yet the bondman who cannot obtain his freedom is divinely exhorted to contentment, 1Co 7:20-24. Meanwhile the Bible give directions as to the mutual duties of masters and servants, Eph 6:5-9 Col 3:22 4:1 Tit 2:9 Phm 1:1-25 1Pe 2:18; and proclaims the great truths of the common origin of all men, the immorality of every human soul, and its right to the Bible and to all necessary means of knowing and serving the Saviorthe application of which to all the relations of master and servant, superior and inferior, employer and employed, would prevent all oppression, which God abhors, De 24:14 Ps 103:6 Isa 10:1-3 Am 4:1 Mal 3:5 Jas 5:4.
The first son of Adam after the death of Abel, Ge 4:25,26; 5:3,6,8, and ancestor of the line of godly patriarchs.
As from the beginning this was the number of days in the week, so it often has in Scripture a sort of emphasis attached to it, and is very generally used as a round or perfect number. Clean beasts were taken into the ark by sevens, Ge 7:1-24. The years of plenty and famine in Egypt were marked by sevens, Ge 41:1-57. With the Jews, not only was there a seventh day Sabbath, but every seventh year was a Sabbath, and after every seven times seven years came a jubilee. Their great feasts of unleavened bread and of tabernacles were observed for seven days; the number of animals in many of their sacrifices was limited to seven. The golden candlestick had seven branches. Seven priests with seven trumpets went around the walls of Jericho seven days, and seven times on the seventh day. In the Apocalypse we find seven churches mentioned, seven candlesticks, seven spirits, seven stars, seven seals, seven trumpets, seven thunders, seven vials, seven plagues, and seven angels to pour them out.
Seven is often put for any round or whole number, just as we use "ten" or "a dozen;" so in Mt 12:45 1Sa 2:5 Job 5:19 Pr 26:16,25 Isa 4:1 Jer 15:9. In like manner, seven times, or sevenfold, means often, abundantly, completely, Ge 4:15,24 Le 26:24 Ps 12:6 79:12 Mt 18:21. And seventy times seven is a still higher superlative, Mt 18:22.
A town of God, long held by the Amorites, Jos 19:42; Jud 1:35, but in the time of Solomon the headquarters of one of his commissaries, 1Ki 4:9.
Sometimes denotes intense darkness and gloom, Ps 23:4, and sometimes a cool retreat, Isa 33:2, or perfect protection, Ps 17:8 Isa 49:2 Da 4:12.
The long shadows cast by the declining sun are alluded to in Job 7:2 Jer 6:4. The swift, never ceasing motion of a shadow is an emblem of human life, 1Ch 29:15 Ps 102:11.
A Chaldean name given to Ananias at the court of Nebuchadnezzar, Da 1:7. SeeABED-NEGO.
A district adjoining Mount Ephraim on the west, 1Sa 9:4. Baal-shalisha is placed by Eusebius fifteen miles from Lydda, towards the north.
1. Son of Jabesh, or a native of Jebesh, who treacherously killed Zechariah King of Israel and usurped his kingdom, B. C. 772. He held it only one month, when Menahem son of Gadi killed him in Samaria. Scripture says that Shallun was the executioner of the threatenings of the Lord against the house of Jehu, 2Ki 15:10-15.
2. SeeJEHOAHAZ 2.
3. The husband of Huldah the prophetess in the time of Josiah, 2Ki 22:14.
Others of the time are alluded to in Nu 26:49 1Ch 2:40 9:17,19,31 Ezr 2:42 7:2 10:24,42 Ne 3:12 7:45.
King of Assyria between Tiglath-pileser and Sennacherib. He ascended the throne about B. C. 728, and reigned fourteen years. Scripture reports that he came into Palestine, subdued Samaria, and obliged Hoshea to pay him tribute; but in the third year, being weary of this exaction, Hoshea combined secretly with So, King of Egypt to remove the subjection. Shalmaneser brought an army against him, ravaged Samaria, besieged Hoshea in his capital, and notwithstanding his long resistance of three years, 2Ki 17:1-40; 18:9-12, he took the city and dismantled it, put Hoshea into bonds, and dismantled it, put Hoshea into bonds, and carried away most of the people beyond the Euphrates. He thus ruined the kingdom of Samaria, which had subsisted two hundred and fifty-four years, from B. C. 975 to 721. The bas- relief copied in the next page was found on a fine Assyrian obelisk of black marble, six and a half feet high, and covered on all sides with inscriptions. It was discovered in the ruins of the northwest palace at Nimroud, and is believed from various evidences to represent Shalmaneser receiving tribute from the Jews subdued by his arms. Hezekiah king of Judah successfully resisted him, 2Ki 18:7: but he appears to have ravaged Moab, Isa 10:9,15,16,23; and is said in Josephus to have conquered Phoenicia, with the exception of insular Tyre, which he besieged in vain for five years.
1Co 10:25, a public meat-market.
Son of Anath, the third judge of Israel, after Ehud and shortly before Barak, in a time of great insecurity and distress, Jud 3:31 5:6. Scripture only says he defended Israel, and killed six hundred Philistines with an ox-goad. SeePLOUGH.
1. One of the three chiefs of Davidís thirty heroes, who shared with David and Eleazar the honor of the exploit recorded in 2Sa 23:11,12; 1Ch 11:12-14. Another feast is described in 2Sa 23:13- 17.
2. A brother of David, 1Sa 16:9; 17:13; elsewhere called Shimeah, 2Sa 13:3,22; 1Ch 2:13.
Others of this name are mentioned, Ge 36:13,17; 2Sa 23:25,33; 1Ch 11:27; 27:8.
1. A scribe or secretary under King Josiah, to whom he read from the newly found autograph roll of the book of the law, 2Ki 22:12; Jer 29:3; 36:10; Eze 8:11.
2. The father of Ahikam, 2Ki 22:12; 25:22; Jer 26:24.
1. The father of Elisha, 1Ki 19:16.
2. A descendant of David, 1Ch 3:22.
3. A chief herdsmen of David in Bashan, 1Ch 27:29.
1. A son of Sennacherib, who assisted in slaying his father, Isa 37:38.
2. A delegate sent to Jerusalem with Regemmelec and others, probably soon after the return from the Babylonish captivity, to inquire of the priests at Jerusalem whether a certain fast was still to be observed, Zec 7:2; 8:19.
1. A plain adjoining the seacoast of Palestine between Carmel and Joppa, about sixty miles in length and of variable width, expanding inland as it stretches from the promontory of Carmel towards the south. It contains some sandy tracts, but the soil is in general highly productive, and the plain was of old famous for its beauty and fertility, 1Ch 27:29 So 2:1 Isa 33:9 35:2 65:10. It contained a town of the same name, called Saron in Ac 9:35.
The whole plain was once thickly populated, but is now comparatively uninhabited. The heat of summer is excessive, and the climate somewhat unhealthy. All travellers describe the view of the plain from the tower of Ramleh as one of surpassing richness and beauty.
The frowning hills of Judah on the east confront the glittering waters of the Mediterranean on the west. Towards the north and south far as the eye can reach spreads the beautiful plain, covered in many parts with fields of green or golden grain. Near by are the immense olive-groves of Ramleh and Lydda and amid them the picturesque towers, minarets, and domes of these villages; while the hillsides towards the northeast are thickly studded with native hamlets. The uncultivated parts of the plain are covered in spring and the early summer with a rich profusion of flowers.
2. A town in the tribe of Gad, in the district of Bashan beyond the Jordan, 1Ch 5:16.
A valley north of Jerusalem, called also the Kingís Dale, Ge 14:17; 2Sa 18:18.
The Jews shaved their beards and hair in time of mourning, repentance, or distress, Job 1:20 Jer 48:37, and in certain ceremonial purifications, Le 14:9 Nu 8:7. At other times they wore them long, like other oriental nationsóexcept the Egyptians, who kept their beards shaved, as we learn from Herodotus and from antique monuments. Hence Joseph shaved before he was presented to Pharaoh, Ge 41:14. SeeBEARD.
The remnant shall return, Isa 7:3 10:21, the name of one of Isaiahís sons; supposed to have had a prophetic meaning, like Mather-shalal-hash-baz.
1. Son of Raamah, Ge 10:7. His posterity is supposed to have settled near the head of the Persian Gulf. SeeCUSH and RAAMAH.
2. Son of Joktan, of the race of Shem, Ge 10:28. SeeSABEANS 2.
3. Son of Jokshan, and grandson of Abraham by Keturah, Ge 25:3. He is supposed to have settled in Arabia Deserta.
4. A turbulent Benjamite, who after the death of Absalom made a fruitless effort to excite a rebellion in Israel against David. Being pursued, and besieged in Abel-beth-maachah, near the southern part of Lebanon, he was beheaded by the people of the city, 2Sa 20:1-26.
SHEBA, QUEEN OF
The fifth month of the Jewish civil year, and the eleventh of the ecclesiastical year, from the new moon of February to that of March, Zec 1:7. SeeMONTH.
Steward of King Hezekiahís palace, Isa 22:15, afterwards his secretary, 2Ki 18:18,37.
1. A Canaanite prince, at the town of the same name, who abducted Dinah the daughter of Jacob, and was soon afterwards treacherously slain, with many of his people, by Simeon and Levi, Ge 34:1-31.
2. A city of central Canaan, between the mountains Gerizim and Ebal, thirty-four miles north of Jerusalem; called also Sychar and Sychem, Ac 7:16. It is first mentioned in the history of Abraham, who here erected his first altar in Canaan, and took possession of the country in the name of Jehovah, Ge 12:6 33:18,19 35:4. Jacob bought a field in its neighborhood, which by way of overplus, he gave to his son Joseph, who was buried here, Ge 48:22 Jos 24:32. After the conquest of Canaan it became a Levitical city of refuge in Ephraim, and a gathering-place of the tribes, Jos 20:7 21:21 24:1,25 Jud 9:1-57. Here Rehoboam gave the ten tribes occasion to revolt, 1Ki 12:1-33. In its vicinity was Jacobís well or fountain, at which Christ discoursed with the woman of Samaria, Joh 4:5. See also Ac 8:25 9:31 15:3. After the ruin of Samaria by Shalmaneser, Shechem became the capital of the Samaritans; and Josephus says it was so in the time of Alexander the Great. St the present day it is also the seat of the small remnant of the Samaritans. SeeSAMARITANS.
It was called by the Romans Neapolis, from which the Arabs have made Napolose, or Nabulus.
The valley of Shechem extends several miles northwest between Mount Ebal and Mount Gerizim, and is about five hundred yards wide; so that in the pure and elastic air of Palestine the two mountains are within hailing distance of each other, one circumstance among thousands evincing the exact truthfulness of Bible narratives, De 27:11-14 Jud 9:7. The winter rains which fall in the eastern part of the valley find their way to the Jordan, while in the western part are numerous springs, forming a pretty brook which flows towards the Mediterranean. "Here," says Dr. Robinson, "a scene of luxuriant and almost unparalleled verdure burst upon our view. The whole valley was filled with gardens of vegetables and orchards of all kinds of fruits, watered by several fountains, which burst forth in various parts and flow westward in refreshing streams. It came upon us suddenly, like a scene of fairy enchantment. We saw nothing to compare with it in Palestine." The modern town has several long and narrow streets, partly on the base of Mount Gerizim. It does not appear to extend so far to the east as the ancient city did. The houses are high and well built of stone, and covered with small domes. Nabulus is thought to contain eight thousand inhabitants, all Mohammedans except five hundred Greek Christians, one hundred and fifty Samaritans, and as many Jews. The rocky base of Mount Ebal on the north of the valley is full of ancient excavated tombs. On Mount Gerizim is the holy place of the Samaritans, and the ruins of a strong fortress erected by Justinian. At the foot of these mountains on the east lies the beautiful plain of Mukhna, ten miles long and a mile and a half wide; and where the valley opens on this plain, Josephís tomb and Jacobís well are located, by the unanimous consent of Jews, Christians, and Mohammedans. The former spot is now covered by a Mohammedan Wely, or sacred tomb; and the latter by an arched stone chamber, entered by a narrow hole in the roof, and the mouth of the well within is covered by a large stone. The well itself is one hundred and five feet deep, and is now sometimes dry. It bears every mark of high antiquity.
The following extract is from Dr. Clarkeís description of this place: "There is nothing in the Holy Land finer than a view of Napolose from the heights around it. As the traveller descends towards it from the hills, it appears luxuriantly embosomed in the most delightful and fragrant bowers, half concealed by rich gardens, and by stately trees collected into groves, all around the bold and beautiful valley in which it stands. Trade seems to flourish among its inhabitants. Their principal employment is in making soap; but the manufactures of the town supply a very widely extended neighborhood, and are exported to a great distance upon camels. In the morning after our arrival, we met caravans coming from Grand Cairo, and noticed others reposing in the large olive plantations near the gates."
"The sacred story of events transacted in the fields of Sychem, from our earliest years is remembered with delight; but with the territory before our eyes where those events took place, and in the view of objects existing as they were described above three thousand years ago, the grateful impression kindles into ecstasy. Along the valley we beheld Ďa company of Ishmaelites coming from Gilead,í Ge 37:25, as in the days of Reuben and Judah, Ďwith their camels bearing spicery and balm and myrrh,í who would gladly have purchased another Joseph of his brethren, and conveyed him as a slave to some Potiphar in Egypt. Upon the hills around, flocks and herds were feeding, as of old; nor in the simple garb of the shepherds of Samaria was there any thing repugnant to the notions we may entertain of the appearance presented by the sons of Jacob. It was indeed a scene to abstract and to elevate the mind; and under emotions so called forth by every circumstance of powerful coincidence, a single moment seemed to concentrate whole ages of existence."
"The principal object of veneration is Jacobís well, over which a church was formerly erected. This is situated at a small distance from the town, in the road to Jerusalem, and has been visited by pilgrims of all ages, but particularly since the Christian era, as the place where our Savior revealed himself to the woman of Samaria."
"The spot is so distinctly marked by the evangelist, and so little liable to uncertainty, from the circumstance of the well itself and the features of the country, that, if no tradition existed for its identity, the site of it could hardly be mistaken. Perhaps no Christian scholar ever attentively read Joh 4:1-54, without being struck with the numerous intervals evidences of truth which crowd upon the mind in its perusal. Within so small a compass it is impossible to find in other writings so many sources of reflection and of interest. Independently of its importance as a theological document, it concentrates so much information, that a volume might be filled with illustration it reflects on the history of the Jews and on the geography of their country. All that can be gathered on these subjects from Josephus seems but as a comment to illustrate this chapter. The journey of our Lord from Judea into Galilee; the cause of it; his passage through the territory of Samaria; his approach to the metropolis of this country; its name; his arrival at the Amorite field which terminates the narrow valley of Sychem; the ancient custom of halting at a well; the female employment of drawing water; the disciples sent into the city for food, by which its situation out of the town is obviously implied; the question of the woman referring to existing prejudices which separated the Jews from the Samaritans; the depth of the well; the oriental allusion contained in the expression, Ďliving water;í the history of the well, and the customs thereby illustrated; the worship upon Mount Gerizim; all these occur within the space of twenty verses."
Of the Syrian sheep, according to Dr. Russell, there are two varieties; the one called Bedaween sheep, which differ in no respect from the larger kinds of sheep among us, except that their tails are somewhat longer and thicker; the others are those often mentioned by travellers on account of their extraordinary tails; and this species is by far the most numerous. The tail of one of these animals is very broad and large, terminating in a small appendage that turns back upon it. It is of a substance between fat and marrow, and is not eaten separately, but mixed with the lean meat in many of their dishes, and also often used instead of butter. A common sheep of this sort, without the head, feet, skin, and entrails, weighs from sixty to eighty pounds, of which the tail itself is usually ten or fifteen pounds, and when the animal is fattened, twice or thrice that weight, and very inconvenient to its owner.
The sheep or lamb was the common sacrifice under the Mosaic law; and it is to be remarked, that when the divine legislator speaks of this victim, he never omits to appoint that the rump or tail be laid whole on the fire of the altar, Ex 29:22 Le 3:9. The reason for this is seen in the account just given from Dr. Russell; from which it appears that this was the most delicate part of the animal, and therefore the most proper to be presented in sacrifice to Jehovah.
The innocence, mildness, submission, and patience of the sheep or lamb, rendered it peculiarly sheep and lamb, rendered it peculiarly suitable for a sacrifice, and an appropriate type of the Lamb of God, Joh 1:29. A recent traveller in Palestine witnessed the shearing of a sheep in the immediate vicinity of Gethsemane; and the silent, unresisting submission of the poor animal, thrown with its feet bound upon the earth, its sides rudely pressed by the shearerís knees, while every movement threatened to lacerate the flesh, was a touching commentary on the prophetís description of Christ, Isa 53:7 Ac 8:32-35.
There are frequent allusions in Scripture to these characteristics of the sheep, and to its proneness to go astray, Ps 119:176 Isa 53:6. It is a gregarious animal also; and as loving the companionship of the flock and dependant of the protection and guidance of its master, its name is often given to the people of God, 2Ki 22:17 Ps 79:13 80:1 Mt 25:32. Sheep and goats are still found in Syria feeding indiscriminately together, as in ancient times,Ge 30:35 Mt 25:32,33. The season of sheep shearing was one of great joy and festivity, 1Sa 25:5,8,36 2Sa 13:23.
Sheep-cotes or folds, among the Israelites, appear to have been generally open houses, or enclosures walled round, often in front of rocky caverns, to guard the sheep from beasts of prey by night, and the scorching heat of noon,Nu 32:16 2Sa 7:8 Jer 23:3,6 Joh 10:1-5. See SHEPHERD.
Joh 5:2. The original might with at least equal propriety be rendered sheep gate; and a gate so called is mentioned in Ne 3:1- 32; 12:39. It was adjacent to the temple, and was so named from the number of sheep introduced through it for the temple service. Dr. Barclay thinks the "sheep market" was an enclosure for sheep and other animals designed for sacrifice, outside the temple area on the east.
The shekel was properly and only a weight. It was used especially in weighing uncoined gold and silver: "The land is worth 400 shekels of silver...Abraham weighed to Ephron the silver-in the audience of the sons of Heth," Ge 23:15,16. In such cases the word shekel is often omitted in the Hebrew, as in Ge 20:16 37:28, where our translators have supplied the word "pieces," but improperly, because coined money was not then known. SeeMONEY.
Between the sacred shekel, Ex 30:13, and the shekel after the "kingís weight," 2Sa 14:26, there would seem to have been a difference; but this and many think the phrase "shekel of the sanctuary" simply means a full and just shekel, according to the temple standards. The first coin, which bore the name of shekel was struck after the exile in the time of the Maccabees, and bore the inscription, Shekel of Israel. Bockh, whose authority in matters pertaining to ancient weights and measures is very high, fixes it proximately at 274 Paris grains. It is the coin mentioned in the New Testament, Mt 26:15, etc., where our translators have rendered it by "pieces of silver."
A son of Noah, Ge 5:32 6:10, always named before Ham and Japheth, as the eldest son; or, as some think, because he was the forefather of the Hebrews. In Ge 10:21, the word elder may be applied to Shem, instead of Japheth. He received a blessing from his dying father, Ge 9:26, and of his line the Messiah was born. He had five sons, and their posterity occupied the central regions between Ham and Japheth, and peopled the finest provinces of the East. The languages of some of these nations are still called the Shemitic languages, including the Hebrew, Chalee, Syriac, Arabic, Ethiopic, etc.; but in this general class are found several languages spoken by nations descended from Ham.
1. A prophet of Israel, by whom God forbade Rehoboam to endeavor to coerce the ten tribes back to their allegiance, and called the king and his court to repent at the invasion of Shishak. He is said to have written the history of Rehoboamís reign, 1Ki 12:22-24 2Ch 12:5-8,15.
2. A Levite, who made a registry of the twenty-four priestly classes, 1Ch 15:8,11 24:6.
3. A false prophet among the exiled Jews in Babylon, who opposed the prophet Jeremiah, and incurred divine judgments on himself and his family. For his name, Nehelamite, a dreamer, Jer 29:24-32.
4. A false prophet in the pay of Sanballat and Tobiah, who sought to terrify Nehemiah into the cowardly in forbidden step of taking refuge within the temple, Nu 3:38 Ne 6:10-14.
The former owner of the hill on which Omri built Samaria, 1Ki 16:24.
In the titles of Ps 6:1-10; 12:1-8, and in 1Ch 15:21. It means properly the eighth, and seems to have been not an instrument, but a part in music, perhaps the lowest.
The name of seven distinguished Jews, alluded to in the following passages: 2Sa 3:4 1Ch 12:5 27:16 2Ch 21:2 Ezr 2:4,57 Ne 11:4 Jer 38:1.
Abel was a keeper of sheep, Ge 4:2, as were the greater number of the ancient patriarchs. When men began to multiply, and to follow different employments, Jabal son of Lamech was acknowledged as father, that is, founder of shepherd and nomads, Ge 4:20. A large part of the wealth of ancient patriarchs consisted in flocks and herds, the care of which was shared by their sons, daughters, and servants. Rachel the bride of Jacob was a shepherdess, Ge 29:6; his sons, the fathers of the tribes of Israel were shepherds, and so was David their king, Ps 78:70-72. The employment is highly honored in the Bible, Lu 2:8-20. In the time of the kings, the "chief herdsman" occupies a post of some importance, 1Sa 21:7 2Ki 3:4 1Ch 27:29-31. In Palestine and its vicinity, besides those who united the keeping of flocks and herds with the tillage of the ground, there were and still are numbers of nomads or wandering shepherds confining themselves to no settled home. These dwellers in tents often had a wide range of pasture grounds, from one to another of which they drove their flocks as occasion required, Ge 37:12-17. In the vast deserts east and south of Palestine they found many spots which in winter and spring were clothed with verdure, Ex 3:1 Ps 65:12. But the heat of summer withered these "pastures of the wilderness," and drove the shepherds and their flocks to seek for highlands and streams. There are many indications in the Scripture of the conscious strength and independence of he ancient shepherd patriarchs, of the extent of their households, and the consideration in which they were held, Ge 14:14-24 21:22-32 26:13-16 30:43 Job 1:3.
God sometimes takes the name of Shepherd of Israel, Ps 80:1 Jer 31:10; and kings, both in Scripture and ancient writers, are distinguished by the title of "Shepherds of the people." The prophets often inveigh against the "shepherds of Israel," that is, the kings, who feed themselves and neglect their flocks; who distress, illtreat, seduce, and lead them astray, Eze 34:10. In like manner Christ, as the Messiah, is often called a shepherd,
Zec 13:7, and also takes on himself the title of "the Good Shepherd," who gives his life for his sheep, Joh 10:11,14,15. Paul calls him the great Shepherd of the sheep, Heb 13:20, and Peter gives him the appellation of Prince of shepherds, 1Pe 5:4. His ministers are in like manner the pastors or under-shepherds of the flock, Jer 3:15 23:3 Eph 4:11.
In Joh 10:1-16, our Savior says the good shepherd lays down his life for his sheep; that he knows them, and they know him; that they hear his voice, and follow him; that he goes before them; that no one shall force them out of his hands, and that he calls them by their names. These, however, being all incidents taken from the customs of the country, are by no means so striking to us as they must have been to those who heard our Lord, and who every day witnessed such methods of conducting this domesticated animal. Modern travelers in the East meet with many pleasing confirmation of the truth of Scripture in respect to these particulars; they see the shepherd walking before his flock, any one of which will instantly run to him when called by its own name. The hireling, or bad shepherd, forsakes the sheep, and the thief enters not by the door of the sheepfold, but climbs in another way. SeeSHEEP.
The Bible applies many of the excellences of the faithful shepherd in illustration of the Saviorís care of his flock. The shepherd was responsible for each member of the flock intrusted to him, Ge 31:39 Ex 22:12 Joh 10:28; he had need of great courage and endurance, Ge 31:40 1Sa 17:34,35 Joh 15:10; he exercised a tender care towards the feeble, and carried the lambs in his arms, Ge 33:13 Isa 40:11 Mr 10:14,16; and searched for the lost sheep, bringing it back from the "land of drought and the shadow of death" into green pastures and still waters, Ps 23:1-6 Lu 15:4-7.
A poetical name for Babylon, signifying, as some judge, house or court of the prince, Jer 25:26; 51:41.
A stream. In a war between the Ephraimites and the men of Gilead under Jephthah, the former were discomfited, and fled towards the fords of the Jordan. The Gileadites took possession of all these fords, and when an Ephraimite who had escaped came to the riverside and desired to pass over, they asked him if he were not an Ephraimite. It he said, No, they bade him pronounce shibboleth; but he pronouncing it sibboleth, according to the dialect of the Ephraimites, they killed him. In this war there fill 42,000 Ephraimites, Jud 12:1-15. This incident should mot be passed over without observing, that it affords proof of dialectical variations among the tribes of the same nation, and speaking the same language, in those early days. There can be no wonder, therefore, if we find in later ages the same word written different ways, according to the pronunciation of different tribes. That this continued, is evident from the peculiarities of the Galilean dialect, by which Peter was discovered to be of that district, Mr 14:70.
A piece of defensive armor. God is often called the shield of his people, Ge 15:1 Ps 5:12 84:11, as are also princes and great men, 2Sa 1:21 Ps 47:9. SeeARMOR.
Ps 7:1-17, title, andSHIGGIONOTH, Hab 3:1; probably song, or song of praise; perhaps some particular species of ode.
1. This term is used, Ge 49:10, to denote the Messiah, the coming of whom Jacob foretells in these words: "The scepter shall not depart from Judah, nor a lawgiver from between his feet, until Shiloh come; and unto him shall the gathering of the people be;" that is, until the time of Christ, Judahís self-governments as a tribe should not ceases. It must be admitted, however, that the literal signification of the word is not well ascertained. Some translate, "The scepter shall not depart from Judah till he comes to whom it belongs." Others, with more probability, till the coming of the Peacemaker, or of the One desired.
2. A famous city of Ephraim, about ten miles south of Shechem, and twenty-four north of Jerusalem. Here Joshua assembled the people to make the second distribution of the Land of Promise; and her the tabernacle of the Lord was set up, when they were settled in the country, Jos 18:1; 19:51. The ark and the tabernacle continued at Shiloh, from B. C. 1444 to B. C. 1116, when it was taken by the Philistines, under the administration of the high priest Eli. In honor of the presence of the ark, there was "a feast of the Lord in Shiloh yearly;" and at one of these festivals the daughters of Shiloh were seized by a remnant of the Benjamites, Jud 21:19-23. At Shiloh Samuel began to prophesy, 1Sa 4:1, and here the prophet Ahijah dwelt, 1Ki 14:2.
1. A Benjamite kinsman of Saul, who insulted king David when fleeing before Absalom, and humbled himself on Davidís return. On both occasions David spared and forgave him; but when dying he cautioned Solomon against a man who knew no restraints but those of fear. Shimei gave his parole never to leave Jerusalem; but broke it by pursuing his fugitive servants to Gath, and was put to death on returning, 2Sa 16:5-14; 19:16-23; 1Ki 2:8,9,36-46.
2. An officer under David, and perhaps under Solomon, 1Ki 1:8; 4:18.
3. A distinguished family at Jerusalem, Zec 12:13.
A level region of indefinite extent around Babylon and the junction of the Euphrates and Tigris, Ge 10:10 11:2 14:1 Jos 7:21 Isa 11:11 Da 1:2 Zec 5:11. SeeMESOPOTAMIA.
The ships of the ancients were very imperfect in comparison with modern ones. Navigators crept carefully along the shores, from one headland or prominent point to another, making a harbor if practicable every night; and when out of sight of land, being ignorant of the compass and quadrant, they guided their course by the sun and certain stars. Even in St. Paulís time, vessels passing from Palestine to Italy, sometimes wintered on the way!
Ac 27:12 28:11. The ancient ships were in general small, though a few large ships are on record. They were often highly ornamented both at the prow and the stern; and the figurehead or "sign," by which the vessel was known, was sometimes an image of its tutelar divinity. They were usually propelled by oars often in several "banks" or rows one above another, as well as by sails. In war, the galley tried to pierce and run down its antagonist.
The Phoenicians were celebrated for their ships and their extensive commerce, as appears from Ezekielís description, Eze 27:1-36, as well as from numerous ancient historians. Though Joppa and in Christís time Caesarea were Jewish ports, 2Ch 2:18 Jon 1:3, yet the Jews were never a maritime people, and most of their foreign navigation would appear to have been carried on by the aid of Phoenicians, 1Ki 9:26 10:22 22:49,50. Paulís graphic and faithful description of his voyage and shipwreck in Ac 27:1-44, discloses many of the peculiarities of ancient navigation. For the "ship of Tarshish," seeTARSHISH.
SHIPHRAH and PUAH
Midwives in Egypt, who through the fear of God spared the newborn sons of the Hebrews, contrary to the orders of the king. God rewarded their kindness to his people, though condemning no doubt the untruthfulness of their excuse to the king. He "made them houses," that is, probably gave each of them a numerous family, Ex 1:15- 21.
A king of Egypt, who declared war against Rehoboam king of Judah in the fifth year of his reign. He entered Judah, B. C. 971, with an innumerable multitude of people out of Egypt, the countries of Lubim, of Suchim, and of Cush, captured the strongest places in the country, and carried away from Jerusalem the treasures of the Lordís house and of the kingís palace, as well as the golden bucklers of Solomon.
Jeroboam having secured the friendship of Shishak, his territories were not invaded, 1Ki 11:40 14:25,26 2Ch 12:2-9. Shishak is generally believed to have been the Sesonchis of secular history, the first king of the twenty-second or Budastine line. He dethroned the dynasty into which Solomon married, 1Ki 3:1, and made many foreign conquests. In the palace-temple of Karnak in Egypt, the walls of which are yet standing, Sesonchis is represented in a large basrelief, dragging captive kings in triumph before the three chief Theban gods. Each country or city is personified, and its name written in an oval above it. One of these figures, with Jewish features, has an inscription, which Campollion interprets, "kingdom of Judah." Several other symbols are thought to denote as many walled towns of Judah, captured by Shishak. SeePHARAOH.
SHITTAH and SHITTIM
A valuable kind of wood, of which Moses made the greater part of the tables, altars, and planks belonging to the tabernacle. Jerome says, "The wood is hard, tough, smooth, and without knots, and extremely beautiful; so that the rich and curious make screws of it for their presses. It does not grow in cultivated places, nor in any other places of the Roman Empire, but only in the deserts of Arabia." It is thought he means the black acacia, the Acacia Seyal, which is found in the deserts of Arabia, and the wood of which is very common about Mount Sinai and the mountains which border on the Red Sea, and is so hard and solid as to be almost incorruptible.
Lilies of testimony, Ps 60:12. SeeSHUSHAN.
Peaceful, in Hebrew a feminine name, corresponding to Solomon as Julia does to Julius. It is the figurative name of the bride in Solomonís Song, So 6:13; and the bridegroom is represented bySOLOMON, also meaning peaceful.
A city of Issachar, Jos 19:18. The Philistines encamped at Shunem, in the great field or Plain of Esdraelon, 1Sa 28:4; and Saul encamped at Gilboa. Abishag, king of Davidís nurse, was of Shunem, 1Ki 1:3; so also was the woman whose son Elisha restored to life, 2Ki 4:8-37. Eusebius and Jerome place it five miles south of Tabor; and it is now recognized in a poor village called Solam, on a declivity at the northwest corner of a smaller valley of Jezreel.
A city on the northeast border of Egypt, not far from the modern Suez, Ge 16:7; 20:1; 25:18; 1Sa 15:7; 27:8. It gave its name to the desert between it and Canaan, towards the Mediterranean, Ex 15:22.
1. Ps 60:1-12, title; pluralSHOSHANNIM, Ps 45:1-14 69:1-36, titles; the name of a musical instrument. The word signifies a lily, or lilies; and if the instrument were so named from its similarity to this flower, we might understand the cymbal. Or it may denote a melody, so named for its pleasantness of the subject matter of the song, as in the title to Ps 45:1-14.
2. The capital city of Elam, or Persia, Ge 14:1 Da 8:2, on the river Ulai. It was the winter residence of the Persian kings, after Cyrus, Es 1:5; and is deeply interesting as the scene of the wonderful events narrated in the book of Esther. Here Daniel had the vision of the ram and he-goat, in the third year of Belshazzar, Da 8:1-27. Nehemiah was also at Shushan, when he obtained from Artaxerxes permission to return into Judea, and to repair the walls of Jerusalem, Ne 1:1.
The present Shouster, the capital of Khusistan, in long. 49 East, lat. 32 North, of the river Karun, a branch of the Shat-el-Arab, has been generally believed to be the ancient Shushan, the Susa of the Greeks; but Mr. Kinneir rather thinks the ruins about thirty-five miles west of Shouster are those of that ancient residence of royalty, "stretching not less, perhaps, then twelve miles from one extremity to the other. They occupy an immense space between the rivers Kerah and Abzal; and like the ruins of Ctesiphon, Babylon, and Kufa, consist of hillocks of earth and rubbish, covered with broken pieces of brick and colored tile. The largest is a mile in circumference, and nearly one hundred feet in height; another, not quite so high, is double the circuit. They are formed of clay and pieces of tile, with irregular layers of brick and mortar, five or six feet in thickness, to serve, as it should seem, as a kind of prop to the mass. Large blocks of marble, covered with hieroglyphics, are not unfrequently here discovered by the Arabs, when digging in search of hidden treasure; and at the foot of the most elevated of the pyramids (ruins) stands the tomb of Daniel, a small and apparently a modern building, erected on the spot where the relics of that prophet are believed to rest." Major Rennell coincides in the opinion that these ruins represent the ancient Susa. The desolation of the place, abandoned to beasts of prey, agrees with the prediction in Eze 32:24.
The preceding statements are confirmed by Loftus, who with Col. Williams visited and in part explored these ruins in 1851-2. Shush, we say, abounds in lions, wolves, lynxes, jackals, boars, etc. During nine months of the year the country is burnt up by the most intense heat, though exceedingly rich and beautiful in the rainy season. His excavations in the great mound disclosed the ruins of a vast palace, commenced apparently by Darius, carried on by Xerxes, and finished by Artaxerxes Mnemon. It is altogether probable that this was the scene of the festival described in Es 1:1-22. The "pillars of marble" may perhaps be even now traced in the ruined colonnade forming a great central court; the huge columns were fluted and highly ornamented, and one of the capitals measured was twenty-eight feet high.
A city of Reuben, Nu 32:28; Jos 13:19; Isa 16:8,9, speaks of the vines of Sibmah, which were cut down by the enemies of the Moabites; for that people had taken the city of Sibmah, Jer 48:32, and other cities of Reuben, after this tribe had been carried into captivity by Tiglath-pileser, 2Ki 15:29; 1Ch 5:26. Jerome says that between Hesbon and Sibmah there was hardly the distance of five hundred paces.
In the Old TestamentZIDON, now called Saida, was celebrated city of Phoenicia, on the Mediterranean Sea, twenty miles north of Tyre and as many south of Beyroot. It is one of the most ancient cities in the world, Ge 49:13, and is believed to have been founded by Zidon, the eldest son of Canaan, Ge 10:15 49:13. In the time of Homer, the Zidonians were eminent for their trade and commerce, their wealth and prosperity, their skill in navigation, astronomy, architecture, and for their manufactures of glass, etc. They had then a commodious harbor, now choked with sand and inaccessible to any but the smallest vessels. Upon the division of Canaan among the tribes by Joshua, Great Zidon fell to the lot of Asher, Jos 11:8 19:28; but that tribe never succeeded in obtaining possession, Jud 1:31 3:3 10:12.
The Zidonians continued long under their own government and kings, though sometimes tributary to the kings of Tyre. They were subdued successively by the Babyloniaus, Egyptians, Seleucidae, and Romans the latter of whom deprived them of their freedom. Many of the inhabitants of Sidon became followers of our Savior, Mr 3:8, and he himself visited their freedom. Many of them also resorted to him in Galilee, Lu 6:17. The gospel was proclaimed to the Jews at Sidon after the martyrdom of Stephen, Ac 11:19, and there was a Christian church there, when Paul visited it on his voyage to Rome, Ac 27:3.
It is at present, like most of the other Turkish towns in Syria, dirty and full of ruins, thought it still retains a little coasting trade, and has five thousand inhabitants. It incurred the judgments of God for its sins, Eze 28:21-24, though less ruinously than Tyre. Our Savior refers to both cities, in reproaching the Jews as more highly favored and less excusable than they, Mt 11:22. Saida occupies an elevated promontory, projecting into the sea, and defended by walls. Its environs watered by a stream from their beautiful gardens, and fruit trees of every kind.
A token, pledge, or proof, Ge 9:12,13 17:11 Ex 3:12 Isa 8:18. Also a supernatural portent, Lu 21:11; and a miracle, regarded as a token of the divine agency, Ex 4:7-9 Mr 8:11. The "signs of heaven" were the movements and aspects of the heavenly bodies, from which heathen astrologers pretended to obtain revelations, Isa 44:25 Jer 10:2. SeeSHIP.
A ring for sealing. SeeRING and SEAL, SEALING.
King of the Amorites at Heshbon, on refusing passage to the Hebrews, and coming to attack them, was himself slain, his army routed, and his dominions divided among Israel, Nu 21:21-34 De 2:26-36.
Black or turbid, the Nile. In Isa 23:3 and Jer 2:18, this name must necessarily be understood of the Nile. In Jos 13:3; 1Ch 13:5, some have understood it of the little river between Egypt and Judah.
Ac 23:3, andSILVANUS, 2Co 1:19, the former name being a contraction of the latter; one of the chief men among the first disciples at Jerusalem, Ac 15:22, and supposed by some to have been of the number of the seventy. On occasion of a dispute at Antioch, as to the observance of legal ceremonies, Paul and Barnabas were chosen to go to Jerusalem, to advise with the apostles; and they returned with Judas and Silas.
Silas joined himself to Paul; and after Paul and Barnabas had separated, Ac 15:37-41, A. D. 51, he accompanied Paul to visit the churches of Syria and Cilicia, and the towns and provinces of Lycaonia, Phrygia, Galatia, and Macedonia. He was imprisoned with him at Philippi, joined him at Corinth after a brief separation, bringing, it is supposed, the donation referred to in 2Co 11:9 Php 4:10,15, and probably went with him to Jerusalem, Ac 16:19,25 17:4,10,14 18:5 1Th 1:1 2Th 1:1. He appears always as a "faithful brother," well known and praised by all the churches, 2Co 1:19 1Pe 5:12.
In the time of the Ptolemies, came to Greece and Rome from the far east of China, etc., by the way of Alexandria, and was sold for its weight in gold. It sometimes came in the form of skeins, and was woven into a light and thin gauze. It is mentioned in Re 18:12, and probably in Eze 16:10,13. In Ge 41:42 and Pr 31:22, the word rendered silk in our version is the same that is elsewhere correctly rendered fine linen. It is not known how early or extensively the Jews used it.
Joh 9:7,11, orSHILOAH, Ne 3:15 Isa 8:6; a fountain and pool at the vase of the hill Ophel, near the opening of the Tyropoeon into the valley of the Kidron on the south of Jerusalem;
"Siloahís brook, that flowed
Fast by the oracle of God."
The pool is now an artificial stone reservoir, fifty-three feet long, eighteen feet wide, and nineteen feet deep. Steps lead to the bottom of the pool, three or four feet above which the water flows off southeast to water the cultivated grounds in the valley below. The fountain is in an arched excavation in the foot of the cliff above the pool; and the small basin here is connected by a winding passage cut through the solid rock under the hill Ophel, with the "Fountain of the Virgin" eleven hundred feet north on the east side of Mount Moriah. SeeBETHESDA.
This passage was traversed throughout by Dr. Robinson. The water flowing through it is tolerably sweet and clear, but has a marked taste, and in the dry season is slightly brackish. It is thought to be driven from the reservoirs under the ancient temple area, and in part from Mount Zion. It runs "softly," Isa 8:6, but ebbs and flows in the "Fountain of the Virgin," and less perceptibly in that of Siloam, at irregular intervals. Thus the water rose more than a foot in the upper fountain, and fell again within ten minutes, while Dr. Robinson was on the spot. He once found a party of soldiers there washing their clothes, Joh 9:1-11 and it is in constant use for purposes of ablution. At Siloam also the water is used for washing animals, etc.
Nothing is known respecting the "tower" near Siloam, the fall of which killed eighteen men. The ancient city wall is believed to have enclosed this pool. Christ teaches us by the above incident that temporal calamities are not always proofs of special guilt, Lu 13:4,5, though the utmost sufferings ever endured in this world are far less than the sins of even the best of men deserve, La 3:39.
One of the precious metals and the one most commonly used as coin among all nations. It is first mentioned in Scripture in the history of Abraham, Ge 13:2 20:16 23:16, and was used in constricting the tabernacle, Ex 26:19,32, and afterwards the temple, 1Ch 29:4. In employing it as a medium of trade, the ancient Hebrews weighed it out, instead of having coins. In the times of the New Testament there were coins. SeeSHEKEL, and MONEY.
1. One of the twelve patriarches, the son of Jacob and Leah, Ge 29:33 Ex 6:15. Some have thought he was more guilty than his brethren in the treatment of Joseph, Ge 37:20 42:24 43:23; but he may have been detained as a hostage because he was one of the eldest sons. The tribes of Simeon and Levi were scattered and dispersed in Israel, in conformity with the prediction of Jacob, on account of their sacrilegious and piratical revenge of the outrage committed against Dinah their sister, Ge 34:1-31 49:5. Levi had no compact lot or portion in the Holy Land; and Simeon received for his portion only a district dismembered from Judah, with some other lands the tribe overran in the mountains of Seir, and in the desert of Gedor, 1Ch 4:24,39,42. The portion of Simeon was west and south or that of Judah, having the Philistines on the northwest and the desert on the south, Jos 19:1-9.
The tribe was reduced in numbers while in the wilderness, from 59,300 to 24,000, Nu 1:23 26:14; very probably on account of sharing in the licentious idolatry of Moab, with Zimri their prince, Nu 25:1-18, or for other sins. They are little known in subsequent history. We find them faithful to David, 1Ch 12:25, and afterwards to Asa, 2Ch 15:9, and in general absorbed by Judah. Moses omits this tribe in his dying benedictions,De 33:1-29; but its place in Israel is restored by a covenant-keeping God, Eze 48:24 Re 7:7.
2. A venerable saint at Jerusalem, full of the Holy Spirit, who was expecting the redemption of Israel, Lu 2:25-35. It had been revealed to him that he should not die before he had seen the Christ so long promised; and he therefore came into the temple, promoted by inspiration, just at the time when Joseph and Mary presented our Savior there, in obedience to the law. Simeon took the child in his arms, gave thanks to God, and blessed Joseph and Mary. We know nothing further concerning him.
3. SurnamedNIGER, or the Black, Ac 13:1, was among the prophets and teachers of the Christian church at Antioch. Some think he was Simon the Cyrenian; but there is no proof of this.
4. The apostle Peter is also called Simeon in Ac 15:14, but elsewhere Simon.
1. One of the twelve apostles. SeePETER.
2. The Canaanite, or Zelotes, one of the twelve apostles. SeeZELOTES.
3. One of the "brethren" of Jesus, Mt 13:55 Mr 6:3. He is by some supposed to be the same with the preceding Simon Zelotes. SeeJAMES 3.
4. The Cyrenian, who was compelled to aid in bearing the cross of Jesus, Mt 27:32, probably on account of his known attachment to His cause. He was "the father of Alexander and Rufus," Mr 15:21; and from the cordial salutation of Paul, Ro 16:13, it would seem that the family afterwards resided at Rome, and that their labor of love was not forgotten by God.
5. A Pharisee, probably at Capernaum, who invited Jesus to dinner at his house, Lu 7:36-50.
6. The leper; that is, who had been a leper; a resident of Bethany, with whom also Jesus supped, Mt 26:6 Mr 14:3. Compare Joh 12:1-11.
7. The tanner; a disciple who dwelt at Joppa, and in whose house Peter lodged, Ac 9:43 10:6,17,32
8. The sorcerer of Samaria; often called Simon Magus, that is, the Magician. SeeSORCERER. This artful impostor, by the aid of some knowledge of philosophy, medicine, physics, and astronomy, acquired an ascendancy over the people of Samaria. But the preaching and miracles of Philip brought great numbers to Christ, and convinced even Simon that a real and great power attended the gospel. He coveted these spiritual gifts of the apostles for selfish end, and sought them by joining the church and afterwards offering to purchase them with money. Peter took the occasion to expose his hypocrisy by a terrible denunciation, Ac 8:9-24. There are various doubtful traditions as to his subsequent course. The sin of trafficking in spiritual things, called Simony after him, was more odious to Peter than to many whom claimed to be his especial followers.
9. The father of Judas Iscariot, Joh 6:71 13:2,26.
SIMPLE and SIMPLICITY
Sometimes used in the Bible in a good sense, denoting sincerity, candor, and an artless ignorance of evil, Ro 16:19 2Co 1:12 11:3; sometimes in a bad sense, denoting heedless foolishness both mental and moral, Pr 1:22 9:4 14:15 22:3; and sometimes in the sense of mere ignorance or inexperience, 2Sa 15:11 Pr 1:4 21:11.
1. Any thought, word, desire, action, or omission of action, contrary to the law of God, or defective when compared with it.
The origin of sin is a subject which baffles all investigation; and our inquiries are much better directed when we seek through Christ a release from its penalty and power, for ourselves and the world. Its entrance into the world, and infection of the whole human race, its nature, forms, and effects, and its fatal possession of every unregenerate soul, are fully described in the Bible, Ge 6:5 Ps 51:5 Mt 15:19 Ro 5:12 Jas 1:14,15.
As contrary to the nature, worship, love, and service to God, sin is called ungodliness; as a violation of the law of God and of the claims of man, it is a transgression or trespass; as a deviation from eternal rectitude, it is called iniquity or unrighteousness; as the evil and bitter root of all actual transgression, the depravity transmitted from our first parents to all their seed, it is called "original sin," or in the Bible," the flesh," "the law of sin and death," etc., Ro 8:1,2 1Jo 3:4 5:17. The just penalty or "wages of sin is death;" this was threatened against the first sin, Ge 2:17 and all subsequent sins: "the soul that sinneth it shall die." A single sin, unrepented of the unforgiven, destroys the soul, as a single break renders a whole ocean cable worthless. Its guilt and evil are to be measured by the holiness, justice, and goodness of the law it violates, the eternity of the misery it causes, and the greatness of the Sacrifice necessary to expiate it.
"Sin" is also sometimes put for the sacrifice of expiation, the sin offering, described in Le 4:3,25,29 also, Ro 8:3 and in 2Co 5:21, Paul says that God was pleased that Jesus, who knew no sin, should be our victim of expiation: "For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him."
For the sin against the Holy Ghost, seeBLASPHEMY.
2. A desert of Arabia Petraea, near Egypt, and on the western arm of the Red Sea, Ex 16:1 17:1 Nu 33:12. To be distinguished from the desert of Zin. SeeZIN.
3. An ancient fortified city, called "the strength of Egypt," Eze 30:15,16. Its name means mire, and in this it agrees with Pelusium and Tineh, the Greek and modern names of the same place. It defended the northeast frontier of Egypt, and lay near the Mediterranean, of the eastern arm of the Nile. Its site, near the village of Tineh, is surrounded with morasses; and is now accessible by boat only during a high inundation, or by land in the driest part or summer. A few mounds and columns alone remain.
A mountain, or mountain range, in Arabia Petraea, in the peninsula formed by the two arms of the Red Sea, and rendered memorable as the spot where the law was given to Israel through Moses, Ex 19:1-Nu 10:33. As this mountain has been almost unknown in modern times, until recently, and is of such importance in Scripture history, we shall enter into some details respecting it.
The upper region of Sinai forms an irregular circle of thirty or forty miles in diameter, possessing numerous sources of water, a temperate climate, and a soil capable of supporting animal and vegetable life; for which reason it is the refuge of all the Bedaweens when the low country is parched up. This, therefore, was the part of the peninsula best adapted to the residence of nearly a year, during which the Israelites were numbered, and received their laws from the Most High. In the highest and central part of this region, seven thousand feet above the level of the sea, rises the sacred summit of Horeb or Sinai. The two names are used almost indiscriminately in the Bible, the former predominating in Deuteronomy. Some have thought there were two adjacent summits, called, in the time of Moses, Horeb and Sinai; and indeed the monks give these names to the northern and southern heights of the same ridge, three miles long. But the comparison of all the Scripture passages rather shows thatHOREB was the general name for the group, and SINAI the name of the sacred summit.
In approaching this elevated region from the northwest, Burckhardt writes, "We now approached the central summits of Mount Sinai, which we had had in view for several days. Abrupt cliffs of granite, from six to eight hundred feet in height, whose surface is blackened by the sun, surround the avenues leading to the elevated region to which the name of Sinai is specifically applied. These cliffs inclose the holy mountain on three sides, leaving the east and northeast sides only, towards the Gulf of Akaba, more open to the view. At the end of three hours, we entered these cliffs by a narrow defile about forty feet in breadth, with perpendicular granite rocks on both sides. The ground is covered with sand and pebbles, brought down by the torrent which rushes from the upper region in the winter time."
The general approach to Sinai from the same quarter is thus described by Mr. Carne: "A few hours more, and we got sight of the mountains round Sinai. Their appearance was magnificent. When we drew near, and emerged out of a deep pass, the scenery was infinitely striking; and on the right extended a vast range of mountains, as far as the eye could reach, from the vicinity of Sinai down to Tor, on the Gulf of Suez. They were perfectly bar, but of grand and singular form. We had hoped to reach the convent by daylight; but the moon had risen some time when we entered the mouth of a narrow pass, where our conductors advised us to dismount. A gentle yet perpetual ascent led on, mile after mile, up this mournful valley, whose aspect was terrific, yet ever varying. It was not above two hundred yards in width, and the mountains rose to an immense height on each side. The road wound at their feet along the edge of a precipice, and amid masses of rock that had fallen from above. It was a toilsome path, generally over stones place like steps, probably by the Arabs; and the moonlight was of little service to us in this deep valley, as it only rested on the frowning summits above. Where is Mount Sinai? Was the inquiry of everyone."
"The Arabs pointed before to Jebel Moosa, the Mount of Moses, as it is called; but we could not distinguish it. Again and again point after point was turned, and we saw but the same stern scenery. But what had the beauty and softness of nature to do here? Mount Sinai required an approach like this, where all seemed to proclaim the land of miracles, and to have been visited by the terrors of the Lord. The scenes, as you gazed around, had an unearthly character, suited to the sound of the fearful trumpet that was heard there. We entered at last on the more open valley, about half a mile wide, and drew near this famous mountain."
The elevated valley or plain Er-Rahah, here and above referred to, is now generally believed to be the place where the Hebrews assembled to witness the giving of the law. Its is two miles long from northwest to southeast, and on an average half a mile wide. The square mile thus afforded is nearly doubled by the addition of those portions of side valleys, particularly Esh-Sheikh towards the northnortheast, from which the summit Tas-Sufsafeh can be seen. This summit, which Dr. Robinson takes to be the true Sinai, rises abruptly on the south side of the plain some fifteen hundred feet. It is the termination of a ridge running three miles southeast, the southern and highest point of which is called by the Arabs Jebel Musa, or Mosesí Mount. Separated from this ridge by deep and steep ravines, are two parallel ridges, of which the eastern is called the Mountain of the Cross, and the western, Jebel Humr. The convent of St. Catharine lies in the ravine east of the true Sinai; while Mount Catharine is the south peak of the western ridge, lying southwest of Jebel Musa and rising more than one thousand feet higher. From the convent, Dr. Robinson ascended the central and sacred mountain, and the steep peak Ras-Sufsafeh. "The extreme difficulty," he says, "and even danger of the ascent, was well rewarded by the prospect that now opened before us. The whole plain Er-Rahah lay spread out beneath our feet; while Wady Esh Sheikh on the right and a recess on the left, both connected with the opening broadly from Er-Rahah, presented an area which serves nearly to double that of the plain. Our conviction was strengthened that here, or on some one of the adjacent cliffs, was the spot where the Lord descended in fire and proclaimed the law. Here lay the plain where the whole congregation might be assembled; here was the mount which might be approached and touched; and here the mountain brow where alone the lightnings and the thick cloud would be visible, and the thunders and the voice of the trump be heard, when the Lord came down in the sight of all the people upon Mount Sinai. We gave ourselves up to the impressions of the awful scene; and read with a feeling which will never be forgotten the sublime account of the transaction and the commandments there promulgated, in the original words as recorded by the great Hebrew legislator."
The plain Er-Rahah is supposed to have been reached by the Hebrews from the shore of the Red Sea, south of the desert of Sin, by a series of wadys or broad ravines winding up among the mountains in an easterly direction, chiefly Wady Feiran and Wady Ehs-Sheikh. The former commences near the Red Sea, and opens into the latter, which making a circuit to the north of Sinai enters the plain at its foot from the north-northeast. For several miles from its termination here, this valley is half a mile wide. By the same northern entrance most travellers have approached the sacred mountain. Its south side is less known. To the spectator on Jebel Musa, it presents to trace of any plain, valley, or level ground to be compared with that on the north; yet some writers maintain that the Hebrews received the law at the southern foot of Sinai. See map, in the articleEXODUS.
In many of the western Sinaite valleys, and most of all in ElMukatteb, which enters Wady Feiran from the northwest, the more accessible parts of the rocky sides are covered by thousands of inscriptions, usually short, and rudely carved in spots where travellers would naturally stop to rest at noon; frequently accompanied by a cross and mingled with representations of animals. The inscriptions are in an unknown character, but were at first ascribed to the ancient Israelites on their way from Egypt to Sinai; and afterwards to Christian pilgrims of the fourth century. Recently, however, many of them have been deciphered by Prof. Beer of Leipzig, who regards them as the only known remains of the language and characters once peculiar to the Nabathaeans of Arabia Petraea. Those thus far deciphered are simply proper names, neither Jewish nor Christian, preceded by some such words as "peace," "blessed," "in memory of."
The giving of the law upon Mount Sinai made it one of the most memorable spots on the globe. Here, moreover, God appeared to Moses in the burning bush, Ex 3:1-22 and Ex 4:1-31; and six centuries later, sublimely revealed himself to the prophet Elijah when fleeing from the fury of Jezebel, 1Ki 19:1-21. There are frequent allusions in Scripture to the glorious and awful delivery of the Law, Jud 5:5 Ps 68:8,17 Hab 3:3. In the New Testament, the dispensation proclaimed on Sinai is contrasted with the gospel of the grace of God, Ga 4:24,25 Heb 12:18-29.
Isa 49:12, a people very remote from the Holy Land, towards the east or south; generally believed to mean the Chinese, who have been known to Western Asia from early times, and are called by the Arabs Sin, and by the Syrians Tsini.
A Canaanite tribe, probably near Mount Lebanon, Ge 10:17; 1Ch 1:15.
1. A name given in De 4:48 to one of the elevations on the mountain ridge called Hermon, which see.
2. The Greek or New Testament form of Zion, which see.
A general in the army of Jabin king of Hazor, sent by his master against Barak and Deborah, who occupied Mount Tabor with an army. Being defeated, he fled on foot, and was ingloriously slain by Jael, Jud 4:1-5:31. SeeJAEL.
In the style of the Hebrews, "sister" had equal latitude with "brother." It is used, not only for a sister by natural relation, from the same father and mother, but also for a sister by the same father only, or by the same mother only; or for any near female relative, Ge 12:13. SeeBROTHER.
An obsolete word, meaning since, Eze 35:6.
The third Hebrew ecclesiastical month, and the ninth of the civil year, beginning with the new moon of our June, Es 8:9.
Jer 2:14; Re 18:13. SeeSERVANT.
SeePITCH, and SEA 3.
An instrument much used in war before the invention of firearms. It was a formidable weapon in hands like those of David and the Benjamites, Jud 20:16 1Sa 17:48-50 1Ch 12:2 2Ch 26:14.
An artificer in brass, iron, etc., first mentioned in Ge 4:22. The art of the smith is one of the essential of civilization; and without it a nation was peculiarly defenseless in time of war, Jud 5:8 1Sa 13:19-22 2Ki 24:14. Workers in silver and in copper were distinguished from each other, Ac 19:24 2Ti 4:14.
A celebrated Ionian city situated at the head of a deep gulf on the western coast of Asia Minor, forty miles north by west of Ephesus. It was one of the richest and most powerful cities of that region, and was frequented by great numbers of Jews. A Christian church was established there at an early day, and was one of the seven churches addressed by Christ in the Revelation of Joh 1:11 2:8-11. It is still a prosperous commercial city, being visited by many foreign ships and by numerous caravans of camels from the interior.
Itís population is nearly 150,000; of whom one-half are Turks, one-forth Greeks, and the remainder chiefly Armenians, Jews, and Franks. So many of its inhabitants are not Mohammedan, that it is called by the Turks Giaour Izmir, or Infidel Smyrna. It has a deep and capacious harbor, well protected except towards the west by the hills, which rise to a great height in the rear of the city, inclosing it on three sides. On these hills lie the scanty remains of the ancient city; among which is the ground-plot of the stadium, where is said to have occurred the martyrdom of Polycarp-the pupil of the apostle John, and very probably "the angel of the church in Ephesus," Re 2:8. Smyrna has been often devastated by earthquakes and conflagrations; multitudes perished there of the cholera in 1831, and 60,000 died of the plague in 1824; yet its fine situation secures a prompt recovery from every disaster. It is now the seat of important missionary efforts, and enjoys the ordinances of a Protestant church.
In Le 11:30, is probably a sort of lizard; and in Ps 58:8, the common slug or snail without a shell, which "melteth" away by depositing its slime wherever it passes.
Is often alluded to in Scripture, for its whiteness, Ex 4:6; Nu 12:10; 2Ki 5:27; Ps 51:7; Isa 1:18, and for its cleansing qualities, Job 9:30. The expression in Pr 25:13, "as the cold of snow in the time of harvest," alludes to its use in preparing cool drinks for the reapers; while on the other hand, in Pr 26:1, "snow in summer," that is, a fall of snow, being unseasonable and unnatural, is compared to honors inappropriately lavished on a fool. Snow from Anti-Lebanon is still sold at Damascus and Beyroot in the simmer, and even conveyed to Egypt. It rarely fell of any great depth in the latitude of Palestine, or remained long on the ground except in elevated spots, 2Sa 23:20. Like every other wonder of nature, it is ascribed to the hand of God, Ps 147:16,17.
King of Egypt, made an alliance with Hoshea king of Israel, and promised him assistance; but was unable to prevent Shalmaneser king of Assyria from taking Samaria and subverting the kingdom, B. C. 721, 2Ki 17:4. SeePHARAOH.
So is believed to have been the Servetus or Sabaco II of secular history, the second king of the Ethiopian or twenty-fifth dynasty, and the predecessor of Trihakah. A singular fact has been brought to light by the recent explorations at Nineveh, corroborating the Scripture record the more forcibly, because unexpected and direct. The Bible shows that Egypt and Assyria, though remote, were often in conflict during the height of the Assyrian ruins power, and that So was at war with Shalmaneser. After war comes the treaty of peace; and as the Bible prepares us to suppose such treaties were made, the Assyrian ruins furnish evidence of their existence. In the remains of Sennacheribís palace recently disentombed, a small room was found which seems to have been a hall of records; and among the seals it contained was the seal of So, well known to students of Egyptian antiquities.
It was impressed, as was then the custom, on a piece of fine clay, which also bore the impress of a royal signet of Assyria; thus showing the probability that such a treaty between the two nations had here been deposited. If so, when the two monarchs affixed their seals to a document, which like themselves has turned to dust, the Most High by their act affixed an additional seal to his holy word, which is true and abideth forever.
Mal 3:2, Hebrew, borith, the cleanser; in Jer 2:22 distinguished from nitre, which see. It is well known that the ancient used certain vegetables and their ashes for the purpose of cleansing linen, etc. The ashes of seashore plants contain carbonate of potash. Combined with oil or fat the alkalies produced soap; but it is not known in what forms the Jews used them.
SOCOH or SHOCHOH
1 1Ki 4:10, a town in the plain of Judah, near Azekah, famous for a battle of David and Saul with the Philistines, 1Sa 17:1; against whom Rehoboam fortified it, and by whom it was afterwards taken, 2Ch 11:7 28:18.
2. A town in the mountains of Judah, south by west of Hebron, Jos 15:48. Dr. Robinson found traces of both these sites, under the name of Suweikeh, or Shaukeh.
One of the cities of the plain, and for some time the dwellingplace of Lot, Ge 13:10-13 14:12. Its crimes and vices were so enormous, that God destroyed it by fire from heaven, with three neighboring cities, Gomorrah, Zeboim, and Admah, which were as wicked as itself, Ge 19:1-20. The plain of Siddim in which they stood was pleasant and fruitful, like an earthy paradise; but it was first burned, and afterwards mostly overflowed by the waters of the Dead Sea or Lake of Sodom. SeeJORDAN, and SEA 3.
The prophets, in denouncing woes upon other countries, mention the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah, and intimate that these places shall be desert and dried up and uninhabited, Jer 49:18 50:40; that they shall be covered with briers and brambles, a land of salt and sulphur, where can be neither planting nor sowing, De 29:23 Am 4:11. Throughout Scripture the ruin of Sodom and Gomorrah is represented as a most signal effect of Godís anger, and as a mirror in which those living at ease in sin and lust may see their own doom. The name is given in Re 11:8, to the great and corrupt city of antichrist. "Sodomites" were men addicted to the beastly lusts alluded in Ge 19:1-38 1Ki 14:24 Ro 1:26,27.
Peaceful, the son and successor of David, born of Bathsheba, B. C. 1033. The prophet Nathan called him Jedidiah, "beloved of the Lord," 2Sa 12:25 and he was a child of promise, 1Ch 22:9,10. At the age of eighteen he received from David the throne which his brother Adonijah had endeavored to usurp. Scripture records his earnest and pious petition for wisdom from above, that he might govern that great people well; and the bestowal of the wisdom, with numerous other blessings in its train, Mt 6:33. His unequalled learning and sagacity soon became renowned throughout the East, and continue so even to this day. In every kind of temporal prosperity he was preeminently favored. His unquestioned dominion extended from the Euphrates to the "river of Egypt;" Palmyra in the desert and Eziongeber on the Red Sea were in his possession.
He accomplished Davidís purpose by erecting a temple for Jehovah with the utmost magnificence. Many other important public and private works were executed during his reign. He established a lucrative commerce with Tyre, Egypt, Arabia, India, and Babylon, by the fruits of which he himself first and chiefly, and indirectly the whole land, were greatly enriched. He was the wisest, wealthiest, most honored, and fortunate of men. But through the temptation connected with this flood of prosperity, he became luxurious, proud, and forgetful of God; plunged into every kind of self-indulgence; allowed his wives, and at length assisted them, in their abominable idolatries; and forfeited the favor of God. Yet divine grace did not forsake him; he was reclaimed, and has given us the proofs of his repentance and the fruits of his experience in his inspired writings.
His reign continued forty years, B. C. 1015-975, and was uniformly peaceful, and favorable to the people, if we except the evils of a corrupt example and an excessive taxation. His history is less fully recorded than Davidís is by the sacred historians, 1Ki 1:11 1Ch 1:19-31; but we may learn much respecting him from his writings, especially from the book of Ecclesiastes. Nothing could more emphatically teach us the weakness of human nature, even when accompanied with the utmost learning and sagacity, the perils of prosperity, or the insufficiency of all possible earthy good to satisfy the wants of man.
The writings of Solomon covered a wide range in the natural sciences as well as in philosophy and morals. "He spake three thousand proverbs; and his songs were a thousand and five: and he spake of trees-of beasts, and of foul, and of creeping things, and of fishes," 1Ki 4:32,33.
Ec 2:6. Among these may perhaps be included the ancient structures now so called, two or three miles southwest of Bethlehem. These are three large reservoirs lying one above and beyond another in a narrow valley. They are built of large stones, and plastered within; and the water collected in them, and in several fountains in the vicinity, was conveyed in an aqueduct to Bethlehem and Jerusalem. The upper pool is 380 feet in length, and the middle pool 423 and the lower on 582. Their average breadth is 200 feet and their depth 38 feet. At present they contain comparatively little water; yet they are of incalculable importance to Bethlehem, and might easily be made so to Jerusalem. The aqueduct crosses the valley of Hinnom below the southwest corner of the city wall, winds south around Mount Zion, and turns north again into the city towards the Haram area.
Called alsoCANTICLES, and Song of Songs, B. C. 1012. This highly figurative and beautiful poem has always held a place in the canonical Scriptures, and of course was a part of the Bible in the time of Christ; it was so regarded by the early Christians, and appears in the ancient catalogues, manuscripts, and versions. Numerous and very different opinions have been held as to the subject and plan of this poem; but that its design is to set forth the spiritual love and mutual communion between Christ and his people, is evident from its harmony, when so understood, with the large class of Scripture passages which represent God and particularly Christ as the husband of the church, and employ the marriage relation in its various aspects to illustrate the relation between the Savior and his people. Thus Ps 45:1-17 is a Messianic nuptial song. See also Isa 54:5 62:5 Jer 3:1-25 Eze 16:1-63 Ho 1:1-3:5 2Co 11:2 Eph 5:23-32 Re 19:7-9 21:2-9.
In the exposition of this beautiful poem we must remember the difference between eastern and western nations. Modern conventional rules and notions. Modern conventional rules and notions are not the standard to which its plan, its images, or its phraseology should be brought. The veiling of spiritual fervor and enjoyment under the symbol of love is common among oriental nations, and commentators have quoted portions of eastern allegorical songs, which bear no small resemblance to this inspired allegory. Many Christians, deeply imbued with the spirit of the gospel, have found great delight and benefit in reading it. Jonathan Edwards says, "I found an inward sweetness that would carry me away in my contemplations. This I know not how to express otherwise than by a calm, delightful abstraction of the soul from all concerns of the world; and sometimes a kind of vision of fixed ideas and imaginations of being alone in the mountains or some solitary wilderness, far from mankind, sweetly conversing with Christ, and rapt and swallowed up in God. The sense I had of divine things would often of a sudden kindle up an ardor in my soul that I knew not how to express. While thus engaged, it always seemed natural to me to sing or chant forth my mediations, or to speak my thoughts in soliloquies with a singing voice."
Dr. John Brown of Haddington, in the introduction to his admirable paraphrase of this book, says, "If understood of the marriage and fellowship between Christ and his people, it will appear most exalted, instructive, and heart-warming. Its majestic style, its power on menís conscience to promote holiness and purity the harmony of its language with that of Christís parables and the books of Revelation, the sincerity of the bride in acknowledging her faults, and its general reception by the Jewish and Christian church, sufficiently prove it inspired of God. To such as read it with a carnal and especially with a wanton mind, it is the savor of death unto death, as the mind and conscience of such are defiled; but to such as have experienced much fellowship with Christ, and read it with a heavenly and spiritual temper of mind, it will be the savor of life unto life. The speakers in it are, Christ, Believers, and the Daughters of Jerusalem," or companions and friends of believers.
Sometimes denotes a grandson, or any remote descendant, Ge 29:5 2Sa 19:24. At other times a son by adoption is meant, Ge 48:5; or by law, Ru 4:17; or by education, 1Sa 3:6 20:35; or by conversion, as Titus was Paulís "son father the common faith," Tit 1:4. And again it denotes a mental or moral resemblance, etc., Jud 19:22 Ps 89:6 Isa 57:3 Ac 13:10. In a similar sense men are sometimes called sons of God, Lu 3:38 Ro 8:14.
SON OF GOD,
A peculiar appellation of Christ, expressing his eternal relationship to the Father, Ps 2:7 Da 3:25 Lu 1:35 Joh 1:18,34. Christ always claimed to be the only-begotten Son of the Father, Mt 4:3 8:29 27:54 Joh 3:16-18; and the Jews rightly understood him as thus making himself equal with God, Joh 5:18 10:30-33.
SON OF MAN,
a title of Christ, assumed by himself in his humiliation, Joh 1:51.
It was understood as a designation of the Messiah, according to Old Testament predictions, Ps 80:17 Da 7:13,14; but appears to indicate especially his true humanity or oneness with the human race. It is applies to him more than eighty times in the New Testament.
Joh 13:26, a small portion of bread, dipped in sauce, wine, or some other liquid at table, Ru 2:14. Modern table utensils were unknown or little used by the ancients. The food was conveyed to the mouth of the thumb and fingers, and a choice morsel was often thus bestowed on a favored guest.
Similar customs still prevail in Palestine. Jowett says, "There are set on the table in the evening two or three messes of stewed meat, vegetables, and sour milk. To me the privilege of a knife, spoon, and plate was granted; but the rest helped themselves immediately from the dish, in which five Arab fingers might be seen at once. Their bread, which is extremely thin, tearing and folding up like a sheet of paper, is used for rolling together a large mouthful, or sopping up the fluid and vegetables. When the master of the house found in the dish any dainty morsel, he took it out with his fingers, and put it to my mouth."
A Berean Christian, and one of those who attended Paul from Greece into Asia Minor, Ac 20:4. He is supposed to have been the kinsman of Paul called Sosipater in Ro 16:21.
One who practised sorcery; nearly synonymous with magician, soothsayer, or wizard. This was a class of persons who dealt in incantations and divinations, and boasted of a power, in consequence of their deep science and by means of certain rites, to evoke the spirits of the dead from their gloomy abodes, and compel them to disclose information on subjects beyond the reach of human powers.
They pretended also that, by means of certain herbs and information on subjects beyond the reach of human powers. They pretended also that, by means of certain herbs and incantations, they were able to expel demons, Ac 13:6,8. Those persons also who devoted themselves to the general studies above mentioned, often abused their knowledge and deceived the common people, by pretending to foretell the destinies of men from the motions and appearances of the planets and stars, and to cure diseases by repeating certain phrases, etc. Of this class appears to have been Simon the sorcerer, mentioned in Ac 8:9,11. Females who practised such arts were called sorceresses and witches, Mal 3:5 Re 22:15. SeeDIVINATION, ENCHANTMENTS, and MAGIC.
A valley in which Delilah resided, not far from Zorah, and Eshtaol, Jud 16:4. In winter and spring it was the channel of a brook, flowing northwest from Judah, by the region of Dan and the Philistines, into the Mediterranean. Jerome mentions a village of Sorek in that vicinity. The same Hebrew word, translated "choice" and "noble" in Ge 49:11; Isa 5:2; Jer 2:21, its the name of a vine bearing small grapes, but very sweet and almost without seeds. This vine may have given the valley its name.
The chief of the synagogue at Corinth, who was beaten by the Gentiles when the Jews carried Paul before Gallio the proconsul, Ac 18:17. He appears to have been the leader of the Jews in this attempt to destroy Paul. Whether he was converted, and is identical with the "Sosthenes our brother" in 1Co 1:1, is unknown.
The ancients supposed the soul, or rather the animating principle of life, to reside in the breath, that it departed from the body with the breath. Hence the Hebrew and Greek words which, when they refer to man, in our Bibles are translated "soul," are usually rendered "life" or "breath" when they refer to animals, Ge 2:7 7:15 Nu 16:22 Job 12:10 34:14,15 Ps 104:29 Ec 12:7 Ac 17:25.
But together with this principle of life, which is common to men and brutes, and which in brutes perishes with the body, there is in man a spiritual, reasonable, and immortal soul, the seat of our thoughts, affections, and reasonings, which distinguishes us from the brute creation, and in which chiefly consists our resemblance to God, Ge 1:26. This must be spiritual, because it thinks; it must be immortal, because it is spiritual. Scripture ascribes to man alone understanding, conscience, the knowledge of God, wisdom, immortality, and the hope of future everlasting happiness. It threatens men only with punishment in another life, and with the pains of hell. In some places the Bible seems to distinguish soul from spirit, 1Th 5:23 Heb 4:12: the organ of our sensations, appetites, and passions, allied to the body, form the nobler portion of our nature which most allies man to God. Yet we are to conceive of them as one indivisible and spiritual being, called also the mind and the heart, spoken of variously as living, feeling, understanding, reasoning, willing, etc. Its usual designation is the soul.
The immortality of the soul is a fundamental doctrine of revealed religion. The ancient patriarchs lived and died persuaded of this truth; and it was in the hope of another life that they received the promises. Compare Ge 50:22 Nu 23:10 1Sa 28:13-15 2Sa 12:23 Job 19:25,26 Ec 12:7 Heb 11:13-16. In the gospel "life and immortality," and the worth of immortal souls, are fully brought to light, Mt 16:26 1Co 15:45-57 2Ti 1:10. To save the souls of men, Christ freely devoted himself to death; and how does it become us to labor and toil and strive, in our respective spheres, to promote the great work for which He bled and died!
Comprehended, in ancient usage, the modern kingdoms of Spain and Portugal, that is, the whole Spanish peninsula. In the time of Paul, it was subject to the Romans, and was frequented by many Jews. For the supposed origin of its name, seeCONEY. In Ro 15:24,28, Paul expresses his intention of visiting Spain; and many conjecture that he did so between his first and second imprisonments at Rome, about A. D. 64-66.
La 2:20, the distance from the extremity of the thumb to that of the little finger, when stretched apart; some nine inches.
A small bird, the Passer Domesticus of naturalists, with quill and tail feathers brown, and its body gray and black, resembling the small "chirping-bird" of America. It is a general inhabitant of Europe, Asia, and Africa; is bold and familiar in its habits, and frequents populous places. It builds under the eaves of houses, an in similar situations; feeds on seeds, fruits, and insects; and lays five or six eggs of a pale ash color, with brow spots. The Hebrew name Tzippor includes also other small chirping birds, feeding on grain and insects, and classed as clean, Le 14:4; among others the thrush, which may be alluded to in Ps 102:7, a bird remarkable throughout the East for sitting solitary on the habitations of men and warbling in sweet and plaintive strains. A sparrow is of course of comparatively little value; and it is therefore a striking exemplification of Godís providence to say that he watches even over the sparrowís fall, Mt 10:29.
These birds are still very numerous, troublesome, and cheap in Jerusalem, Lu 12:6, and flit in great numbers around the mosque of Omar, on the site of the ancient temple, within the precincts of which they built their favored nest of old, Ps 84:3.
So 1:12 4:13,14, a highly perfumed ointment prepared from a plant in India growing in short spikes. It was highly prized by the ancients, and was a favorite perfume at their baths and banquets. Horace represents a small box of it as equivalent to a large vessel of wine, and as a handsome quota for a guest to contribute to an entertainment. It was kept closely sealed, sometimes in alabaster boxes; and to unseal and open it was called breaking the box, Mr 14:3. The evangelists speak of it as diffusing a rich perfume; and as "precious," and "very costly," a pound of it being worth more than three hundred denarii, or over forty dollars, Joh 12:3-5. SeeALABASTER and PENNY.
A well-known insect, remarkable for the thread which it spins, and with which it forms a web of curious texture, but so frail that it is exposed to be broken and destroyed by the slightest accident. To the slenderness of this filmy workmanship Job compares the hope of the wicked, Job 8:14. So also in Isa 59:5, it is shown that the works of sinners are utterly inadequate to cover or protect them. In Pr 30:28, it is said in our version that "the spider taketh hold with her hands, and is in kingsí palaces;" but the Hebrew employs here a different word, which signifies, according to the best interpreters, a species of lizard frequent in Palestine.
A word employed in various senses in Scripture.
1. ForTHE HOLY, HOLINESS SPIRIT, the third person of the Holy Trinity, who inspired the prophets, animates good men, pours his unction into our hearts, imparts to us life and comfort; and in whose name we are baptized and blessed, as well as in that of the Father and the Son. When the adjective Holy is applied to the term Spirit, we should always understand it as here explained; but there are many places whether it must be taken in this sense, although the term Holy is omitted. See HOLY, HOLINESS SPIRIT.
2.BREATH, respiration; or the principle of animal life, common to men and animal: this God has given, and this he recalls when he takes away life, Ec 3:21. See SOUL.
3. TheRATIONAL SOUL which animates us, and preserves its being after the death of the body. That spiritual, reasoning, and choosing substance, which is capable of eternal happiness. See SOUL.
The "spirits in prison," 1Pe 3:19, it is generally thought, are the souls of antediluvian sinners now reserved unto the judgment-day, but unto whom the Spirit preached by the agency of Noah, etc., 2Pe 2:5, when they were in the flesh. Thus Christ "preached" to the Ephesians, whom he never visited in person, Eph 2:17.
4. AnANGEL, good or bad; a soul separate from the body, Mr 14:26. It is said, Ac 23:8, that the Sadducees denied the existence of angels and spirits. Christ, appearing to his disciples, said to them, Lu 24:39, "Handle me, and see; for a spirit hath not flesh and bones, as ye see me have."
5. TheDISPOSITION of the mind or intellect. Thus we read of a spirit of jealously, a spirit of fornication, a spirit of prayer, a spirit of infirmity, a spirit of wisdom and understanding, a spirit of fear of the Lord, Ho 4:12 Zec 12:10 Lu 13:11 Isa 11:2.
6. TheRENEWED NATURE of true believers, which is produced by the Holy Spirit, and conforms the soul to his likeness. Spirit is thus the opposite of flesh, Joh 3:6. This spirit is virally united with, an in some passages can hardly be distinguished from the "Spirit of Christ," which animates true Christians, the children of God, and distinguishes them from the children of darkness, who are animated by the spirit of the world, Ro 8:1-16. This indwelling Spirit is the gift of grace, of adoption-the Holy Spirit poured into our hearts-which emboldens us to call God "Abba, my Father." Those who are influenced by this Spirit "have crucified the flesh, with its affections and lusts," Ga 5:16-25.
"Distinguishing or discerning of spirits" consisted in discerning whether a man were really inspired by the Spirit of God, or was a false prophet, an impostor, who only followed the impulse of his own spirit or of Satan. Paul speaks, 1Co 12:10 of the discerning of spirits as being among the miraculous gifts granted by God to the faithful at the first settlement of Christianity.
To "quench the Spirit," 1Th 5:19, is a metaphorical expression easily understood. The Spirit may be quenched by forcing, as it were, that divine Agent to withdraw from us, by irregularity of life, frivolity, avarice, negligence, or other sins contrary to charity, truth, peace, and his other gifts and qualifications.
We "grieve" the Spirit of God by withstanding his holy inspirations, the impulses of his grace; or by living in a lukewarm and incautious manner; by despising his gifts, or neglecting them; by abusing his favors, either out of vanity, curiosity, or indifference. In a contrary sense, 2Ti 1:6, we "stir up" the Spirit of God which is in us, by the practice of virtue, by compliance with his inspirations, by fervor in his service, by renewing our gratitude, and by diligently serving Christ and doing the works of the Spirit.
Booty taken in war, in which all the soldiers were permitted by David to share, whether actually engaged in battle or not, 1Sa 30:21-25. A portion of what was thus gained was devoted to the Lord of hosts as early as the time of Abraham, Ge 14:20; and under the Mosaic legislation a definite rule for this purpose was established, Nu 31:26-47 1Ch 26:27.
Christ "spoiled" principalities and powers when by his atoning work he triumphed over Satan and his hosts, and deprived them of their power to injure his people, Col 2:15. Paul warns Christians not to permit human philosophy, tradition, etc., to "spoil" them, that is, to rob them of Scripture truths and spiritual blessings, Col 2:8. SeePHILOSOPHY.
A disciple of Paul, by whom he is honorably mentioned, Ro 16:9. From his name it would seem that he was a Greek, though residing at Rome.
One of the four ingredients composing the sacred perfume, Ex 30:34,35. Some think the gum called storax is intended; but it is generally understood to be the purest king of myrrh; and as the Hebrew properly signifies a drop, it would seem to refer to myrrh as distilling, dropping form the tree of its own accord, without incision. So Pliny, speaking of the trees whence myrrh is produced, says, "Before any incision is made, they exude of their own accord what is called Stacte, to which no kind of myrrh is preferable."
Under the name of stars, the Hebrew comprehended all the constellations, planets, and heavenly luminaries, except the sun and moon. The psalmist, to exalt the power and omniscience of God, says, "He telleth the number of the stars; he calleth them all by their names," Ps 147:4; God being described as a king taking a review of his army, and knowing the name of every one of his soldiers. Christ is called "the Morning Star," which is the brightest of the heavenly train, and ushers in the day, Re 22:16. Compare Nu 24:17. To express increase and multiplication, Scripture uses the similitude of the stars of heaven, or of the sands of the sea, Ge 15:5 22:17 26:4 Ex 32:13. In times of disgrace and public calamity, it is said the stars withhold their light; they fall from heaven, and disappear. These figurative and emphatic expressions, which refer to the governing powers of nations, are only weakened and enervated by being explained.
In the pure atmosphere of Judea and the East the stars shine with peculiar brilliancy, and seem as if hanging midway in the heavenly canopy, while the eye penetrates the ether far beyond them. The beauty and splendor that men observed in the stars; the great advantages they derived from them; the wonderful order apparent in their return, in the production and preservation of animals, fruits, plants, and minerals, have induced almost all heathen nations to impute to them life, knowledge, power, and to pay them a sovereign worship and adoration. The Israelites also needed to be warned against this sin. "Learn not the way of the heathen," says God, "and be not dismayed at the signs of heaven; for the heathen are dismayed at them," Jer 10:2. SeeIDOLATRY.
STAR IN THE EAST.
It is a fact of great interest, that when the Savior appeared, not only were the Jews eagerly expecting the Messiah, but many in various heathen lands were cherishing similar hopes: in part through the diffusion of the Hebrew prophecies; in part through the felt need of a Savior; and in part perhaps through direct divine intimations.
The eastern magi apparently were not only apprized of the coming birth of a royal and divine being in Judea, but were miraculously guided to Bethlehem by a meteoric light, appearing in the right direction for their course, Mt 2:9. The fanciful theory of the distinguished astronomer Kepler, that the conjunction of the planets Jupiter and Saturn six years before the common Christian era may have constituted the "star in the east," does not appear to meet the terms of the inspired narrative. SeeMAGI.
A Christian of Corinth, whose family Paul baptized, the first convert to the gospel in Achaia, probably about A. D. 52, 1Co 1:16. He was forward in the service of the church, and came to Paul at Ephesus, 1Co 16:15,17.
One of the seven deacons first chosen by the church at Jerusalem, and distinguished among them as "a man full of faith and of the Holy Ghost." He seems from his name to have been a Hellenistic Jew, (seeGRECIANS,) and to have been chosen in part as being familiar with the language, opinions, and customs of the Greeks, Ac 6:1-6. His mighty works and unanswerable argument roused the bitterest hostility against him, and he was brought before the Sanhedrin for trial, on the charge of blasphemy and heresy. His speech in his own defense, probably recorded only in part, shows historically that the opponents of Christianity were but the children and imitators of those who had always opposed true religion. His enraged hearers hurried him to death, a judicial tribunal becoming a riotous mob for the occasion. Compare Joh 18:31. With Christ-like magnanimity he forgave his murderers, and "fell asleep" amid their stones, with his eyes upon the Savior "standing at the right hand of God," as if rising from his throne to protect and receive the first martyr of his church, Ac 7:1-60.
The results of Stephenís death illustrates the saying of Tertrullian, "the blood of the martyrs is the seed of the church," Ac 8:1,4 11:19-21. Augustine observes that the church owes the conversion and ministry of Paul to the prayer of Stephen. Paul, himself a Cilician, Ac 6:9 22:3, had undoubtedly felt the force of his arguments in the discussions which preceded his arrest; and long afterwards alluded to his own presence at the martyrís death, Ac 22:19,20óthat triumph of Christian faith and love which has taught so many martyrs and Christians how to die. Yet nothing he heard or witnessed availed for his conversion, till he saw the Savior himself, Ac 9:1-43. The scene of Stephenís martyrdom is placed by modern tradition on the east side of Jerusalem, near the gate called after his name. Earlier traditions located it more to the north.
The trunk of a tree, Job 14:8, or a reproachful name for the idols carved out of it, Jer 2:27; Ho 4:12. The stocks in which Paul and Silas were fastened, Ac 16:24, were an instrument well known in Europe and America until recent times; consisting of two beams, the upper one movable, with grooves between them large enough to receive the ankles of the prisoner. The arms also were sometimes confined. Stocks were frequently erected in market places, that the insults of the populace might be added to the pain of confinement, Job 13:27; Jer 20:2.
A set of fatalistic heathen philosophers so named from the Greek word signifying porch, or portico, because Zeno its founder, more than three centuries before Christ, held his school in a porch of the city of Athens. They placed the supreme happiness of man in living agreeably to nature and reason; affecting the same stiffness, patience, apathy, austerity, and insensibility as the Pharisee, whom they much resembled. They were in great repute at Athens when Paul visited that city, Ac 17:18.
The allusion in Re 2:17 may be to the practice at the Olympic games of giving the successful competitor a white stone, inscribed with his name and the value of his prize; or to the mode of balloting with black and white stones on the question of the acquittal of an accused person, or his admission to certain privileges; if the stones deposited in the urn by the judges were all white, the decision was favorable. In early ages, flint-stone knives were in common use, instead of steel, Ex 4:25 Jos 5:2.
It was also customary to raise a heap or mound of stones in commemoration of any remarkable event, Ge 31:46 Jos 4:5-7 7:26 8:29 2Sa 18:17. The same custom still prevails in Syria, and passing travellers are wont to add each one a stone to the heap. SeeCORNER STONE.
Was a punishment much in use among the Hebrews, and the rabbins reckon all crimes as being subject to it, which the law condemns to death without expressing the particular mode. They say that when a man was condemned to death, he was led out of the city to the place of execution, and there exhorted to acknowledge and confess his fault.
He was then stoned in one of two ways; either stones were thrown upon him till he died, or he was thrown headlong down a steep place, and a large stone rolled upon his body. The former was the usual mode; and the witnesses were required to cast the first stones, De 17:5-7; for which purpose they sometimes threw off their outer garments, Ac 7:58. To the latter mode it is supposed there is a reference in Mt 21:44. So also in Lu 4:29, where compareNAZARETH.
Its Hebrew name signifies kindness or mercy, and its Greek name natural affection, probably because of the tenderness which it is said to manifest towards its parents-never, as is reported, forsaking them, but feeding and defending them in their decrepitude. In modern times, parent storks are known to have perished in the effort to rescue their young from flames; and it has been a popular, but perhaps ill-founded opinion, that in their migratory flights, the leader of the flock when fatigued is partially supported by others as he falls into the rear. In Jer 8:7, allusion is made to the unerring instinct of the stork as a bird of passage, and perhaps to its lofty flight: "the stork in the heavens knoweth her appointed times." Moses places it among unclean birds, Le 11:19 De 14:18. The psalmist says, "As for the stork, the fir-trees are her house," Ps 104:17. In the climate of Europe, she commonly builds her nest on some high tower or ruin, or on the top of a house; but in Palestine, where the coverings of the houses are flat, she builds in high trees.
The stork has the beak and legs long and red; it feeds on field mice, lizards, snakes, frogs, and insects. Its plumage would be wholly white, but that the extremities of its wings, and some small part of its head and thighs, are black. It sits for the space of thirty days, and lays but four eggs. Storks migrate to southern countries in August, and return in the spring. They are still the objects of much veneration among the common people in some parts of Europe and Asia.
Narrow, and difficult to pass, Mt 7:13,14. This word should not be confounded with straight. To be "in a strait," is to have oneís way beset with doubts or difficulties, to be at a loss, 1Sa 13:6 2Sa 24:14 Php 1:23.
Is sometimes used in a special sense, easily understood from the context. It usually denotes a foreigner, who is not a native of the land in which he resides, Ge 23:4. The Mosaic Law enjoined a generous hospitality towards foreign residents, saying, "Thou shalt love him as thyself," Le 19:33,34 De 10:18,19 24:17 27:19. They were subject to the law, Ex 20:10 Le 16:20, and were admitted to many of the privileges of the chosen people of God,Nu 9:14 15:14.
The strangers whom David collected to aid in building the temple, 1Ch 22:2, probably comprised many of the remnants of the Canaanite tribes, 1Ki 9:20,21. Hospitality to strangers, including all travellers, was the duty of all good citizens, Job 31:32 Heb 13:2.
In the towns and cities of Palestine, are supposed to have been comparatively narrow and ill graded, on account of the unevenness of their sites, and the little use of wheel-carriages. They were wider, however, than in many modern cities, Lu 14:21, and terminated in large public areas around the gates, Ne 8:1. Josephus says that those of Jerusalem were paved. They were named, like our own streets, Ac 9:11, and often resembled the bazaars of modern eastern cities, the shops of the same kind being in the same street and giving it its name, as the bakersí street, Ne 3:31,32; Jer 37:21, and the valley of the cheesemongers. Here, and especially at the prominent points and corners, men loved, as the Turks do now, to spread their piece of carpet and sit, 1Sa 4:13; Job 29:7; and here at the hours of prayer they performed their devotions, Mt 6:5.
1. A spot in the valley of the Jordan and near the Jabbok, where Jacob set up his tents on his return from Mesopotamia, Ge 33:17. Joshua assigned the city subsequently built here to the tribe of Gad, Jos 13:27. Gideon tore the flesh of the principal men of Succoth with thorn and briars, because they returned him a haughty answer when pursuing the Midianites, Jud 8:5. It seems to have lain on the east side of the Jordan; but may possibly have been on the west side, at the place now called Sakut. Compare 1Ki 7:46; Ps 60:6.
2. The first encampment of the Israelites, on their way out of Egypt, Ex 12:37.
Tents of the daughters, 2Ki 17:30, an object of idolatrous worship among the Babylonians: an idol; or as some think tents, or booths, in which the Babylonian females prostituted themselves of Mylitta, the Assyrian Venus.
Allies of Shishak in his invasion of Judah, 2Ch 12:3; probably from region southeast of Egypt.
The great luminary of day, which furnishes so many similitudes to the Hebrew poets, as well as those of all nations, Jud 5:31 Ps 84:11 Pr 4:18 Lu 1:78,79 Joh 8:12. For the idolatrous worship of the sun, seeBAAL.
SUPERSTITION and SUPERSTITIOUS
Ac 17:22; 19:25, are not to be understood offensively. Paul found the Athenians "much addicted to devotion," such as it was: perhaps "religion" and "religiously inclined" may better express the sense of the original.
SeeEATING, and LORDíS SUPPER. For the suppers, or love feasts, which used to accompany the celebration of the Lordís supper, see FEASTS.
One who makes himself personally responsible for the safe appearing of another, Ge 43:9 44:32, or for the full payment of his debts, etc., Pr 22:26. Christ is the "surety of a better testament;" that is, in the glorious and complete covenant of grace he engages to meet all the claims of the divine law against his people, that they may be absolved, and enriched with all covenant blessing, Heb 7:22. Hence his obedience unto death, Isa 53:5,12.
The well-known bird of passage, which is so common both in our country, in Europe, and in the East, Ps 84:3; Isa 38:14; Jer 8:7. SeeCRANE, and SPARROW.
This bird is mentioned only in Le 11:18 De 14:16; and it is there quite doubtful whether the Hebrew word means a swan. The Septuagint calls it the ibis, and the purple hen, a waterfowl.
A well-known animal, forbidden as food to the Hebrews, who held its flesh in such destination that they would not so much as pronounce its name, Le 11:7 De 14:8. The eating of swineís flesh was among the most odious of the idolatrous abominations charged upon some of the Jews, Isa 65:4 66:3,17. The herd of swine destroyed by evil spirits in the Sea of Gennesaret, Mt 8:32, are supposed to have been kept by Jews for sale to the Gentiles around them, in defiance of the law. The beautiful and affecting parable of the prodigal son shows that the tending of swine was considered to be an employment of the most despicable character; it was the last resource of that depraved and unhappy being who had squandered his patrimony in riotous living, Lu 15:14-16. The irreclaimably filthy habits of this animal illustrate the insufficiency of reformation without regeneration, 2Pe 2:22; as its treading in the mire any precious thing which it cannot eat, illustrates the treatment which some profligates the treatment which some profligates give to the gospel, Mt 7:6.
SYCAMORE or SYCAMINE
Lu 17:6, a curious tree, which seems to partake of the nature of both the mulberry and the fig, the former in its leaf, and the latter in its fruit. Hence its name in Greek, meaning the mulberryfig. The sycamore is thus described by Norden: "I shall remark that they have in Egypt divers sorts of figs; but if there is any difference between them, a particular kind differs still more. I mean that, which the sycamore bears, that they name in Arabic giomez. It was upon a tree of this sort that Zaccheus got up, to see our Savior pass through Jericho, Lu 19:4. This sycamore is of the height of a beech, and bears its fruit in a manner quite different from other trees. It has them on the trunk itself, which shoots out little sprigs in form of a grape-stalk, at the end of which grows the fruit, close to one another, much like bunches of grapes. The tree is always green, and bears fruit several times in the year, for I have seen some sycamores which had fruit has the figure and smell of real figs, but is inferior to them in the taste, having a disgustful sweetness. (Compare Am 7:17) Its color is a yellow, inclining to an ochre, shadowed by a flesh color; in the inside, it resembles the common fig, excepting that it has a blackish coloring, with yellow spots. This sort of tree is pretty common in Egypt. The people, for the greater part, live on its fruit."
The sycamore has a very large trunk, which breaks up onto five or six stout branches not many feet above the ground; it is planted by the roadside, and often where two ways meet; and sends its enormous roots deeply into the ground in every direction, so that few trees can compare with it in steadfast firmness. The power that could say to it, "Be thou plucked up by the root, and be thou planted in the sea," and it should obey, must be of God, Lu 17:6. From1Ki 10:27 1Ch 27:28 2Ch 1:15, it is evident that this tree was quite common it Palestine, as well as in Egypt; and from its being joined with the vines in Ps 78:47, as well as from the circumstance of Davidís appointing a particular officer to superintend the plantations of them, it seems to have been as much valued in ancient as in modern times. From Isa 9:10, we find that the timber of the sycamore was used in the construction of buildings; and notwithstanding its porous and spongy appearance, it was of extreme durability.
Describing the catacombs and mummies of Egypt, Dr. Shaw states that he found the mummy chests, and that little square boxes containing various figures, which are placed at the feet of each mummy, to be both made of sycamore and uncorrupted for at least three thousand years.
SYCHAR or SYCHEM
A city on the southern frontiers of Egypt, towards Ethiopia, between Thebes and the cataracts of the Nile, and now called Assouan. Pliny says it stands in a peninsula on the eastern shore of the Nile; that is was mile in circumference, and had a Rome garrison. "From Migdol," the tower, "unto Syene," denotes the whole length of Egypt from north to south, Eze 29:10; 30:6. Few remains of the ancient city are now extant. In its vicinity are quarries of the Egyptian granite called Syenite, which furnished the material for numerous obelisks and colossal statues.
A word which primarily signifies an assembly; but, like the word church, came at length to be applied to the buildings in which the ordinary Jewish assemblies for the worship of God were convened. From the silence of the Old Testament with reference to these places of worship, many commentators and writers of biblical antiquities are of opinion that they were not in use till after the Babylonish captivity; and that before that time, the Jews held their social meetings for religious worship either in the open air or in the houses of the prophets. See 2Ki 4:23. In Ps 74:8, it is at least very doubtful whether the Hebrew word rendered synagogues, refers to synagogue-buildings such as existed after the captivity. Properly the word signifies only places where religious assemblies were held. In the time of our Savior they abounded.
Synagogues could only be erected in those places when ten men of age, learning, piety, and easy circumstances could be found to attend to the service, which was enjoined in them. Large towns had several synagogues; and soon after the captivity their utility became so obvious, that they were scattered over the land, and became the parish churches of the Jewish nation. Their number appears to have been very considerable; and when the erection of a synagogue was considered a mark of piety, Lu 7:5, or a passport to heaven, we need not be surprised to hear that they were multiplied beyond all necessity, so that in Jerusalem alone there were not fewer than 460 or 480. They were generally built on the most elevated ground, and consisted of two parts. The westerly part of the building contained the ark or chest in which the book of the law and the section of the prophets were deposited, and was called the temple by way of eminence. The other, in which the congregation assembled, was termed the body of the synagogue. The people sat with their faces towards the temple, and the elders in the contrary direction, and opposite to the people; the space between them being occupied by the pulpit or reading desk. The seats of the elders were considered more holy than the others, and are spoken of as "the chief seats in the synagogues," Mt 23:6. The women sat by themselves in a gallery secluded by latticework.
The stated office-bearers in every synagogue were ten, forming six distinct classes. We notice first the Archisynagogos, or ruler of the synagogue, who regulated all its concerns and granted permission to address the assembly. Of these there were three in each synagogue. Dr. Lightfoot believes them to have possessed a civil power, and to have constituted the lowest civil tribunal, commonly known as "the council of three," whose office it was to judge minor offences against religion, and also to decide the differences that arose between any members of the synagogue, as to money matters, thefts, losses, etc. To these officers there is perhaps an allusion in 1Co 6:5. See alsoJUDGMENT. The second officer-bearer was "the angel of the synagogue," or minister of the congregation, who prayed and preached. In allusion to these, the pastors of the Asiatic churches are called "angels," Re 2:3.
The service of the synagogue was as follows: The people being seated, the "angel of the synagogue" ascended the pulpit, and offered up the public prayers, the people rising from their seats, and standing in a posture of deep devotion, Mt 6:5 Mr 11:25 Lu 18:11,13. The prayers were nineteen in number, and were closed by reading the execration. The next thing was the repetition of their phylacteries; after which came the reading of the law and the prophets. The former was divided into fifty-four sections, with which were united corresponding portions from the prophets; (see Ac 13:15,27 15:21) and these were read through once in the course of the year. After the return from the captivity, an interpreter was employed in reading the law and the prophets, Ne 8:2-8, who interpreted them into the Syro-Chaldaic dialect, which was then spoken by the people. The last part of the service was the expounding of the Scriptures, and preaching from them to the people. This was done either by one of the officer, or by some distinguished person who happened to be present. The reader will recollect one memorable occasion on which our Savior availed himself of the opportunity thus afforded to address his countrymen, Lu 4:20; and there are several other instances recorded of himself and his disciples teaching in the synagogues. See Mt 13:54 Mr 6:2 Joh 18:20 Ac 13:5,15,44 14:1 17:2-4,10 18:4,26 19:8. The whole service was concluded with a short prayer or benediction.
The Jewish synagogues were not only used for the purposes of divine worship, but also for courts of judicature, in such matters as fell under the cognizance of the Council of Three, of which we have already spoken. On such occasions, the sentence given against the offender was sometimes, after the manner of prompt punishment still prevalent in the East, carried into effect in the place where the council was assembled. Hence we read of persons being beaten in the synagogue, and scourged in the synagogue, Mt 10:17 Mr 13:9 Ac 22:19 26:11 2Co 11:24. To be "put out of the synagogue," or excommunicated from the Jewish church and deprived of the national privileges, was punishment much dreaded, Joh 9:22 12:42 16:2. In our own day the Jews erect synagogues wherever they are sufficiently numerous, and assemble on their Sabbath for worship; this being conducted, that is, the reading or chanting of the Old Testament and of prayers, in the original Hebrew, though it is a dead language spoken by few among them. Among the synagogues of Jerusalem, now eight or ten in number, are some for Jews of Spanish origin, and others for German Jews, etc., as in the time of Paul there were separate synagogues for the Libertines, Cyreians, Alexandrians, etc., Ac 6:9.
SYNTYCHE and EUODIAS
Php 4:2,3, women eminent for virtue and good works in the church at Philippi. Paul exhorts them to persevere, or rather, to act harmoniously together in their Christian labors, as all should do who are "in the Lord."
Now Siracasa, a large and celebrated city on the eastern coast of Sicily, furnished with a capacious and excellent harbor. The city, founded 734 B. C., was opulent and powerful, and was divided into four or five quarters or districts, which were of themselves separate cities. The whole circumference is stated by Strabo to have been one hundred and eighty stadia, or about twenty-two English miles. Syracuse is celebrated as having been the birthplace and residence of Archimedes, whose ingenious mechanical contrivances during its siege by the Romans, 200 B. C., long delayed its capture. Paul passed three days here, on his way from Melita to Rome, in the spring of A. D. 63, Ac 28:12. Population anciently 200,000; now 11,000.
In HebrewARAM, a large district of Asia, lying, in the widest acceptation of the name, between the Mediterranean, Mount Taurus, and the Tigris, and thus including Mesopotamia, that is, in Hebrew, Syria of the two rivers. See ARAM 2. Excepting the Lebanon range, it is for the most part a level country. In the New Testament, Syria may be considered as bounded west and north-west by the Mediterranean and by Mount Taurus, which separates it from Cilicia and Cataonia in Asia Minor, east by the Euphrates, and south by Arabia Deserta and Palestine, or rather Judea, for the name Syria included also the northern part of Palestine.
The valley between the ridges of Lebanon and Anti-Lebanon was called Coele-Syria and Phoenicia were subject to the king of Babylon, and they afterwards were tributary to the Persian monarchs. After the country fell into the hands of the Romans, Syria was made the province of a proconsul; to which Judea, although governed by its own procurators, was annexed in such a way, that in some cases an appeal might be made to the proconsul of Syria, who had at least the power of removing the procurators from office. Syria is now in the possession of the Turks. Its better portions have been thickly populated from a very early period, and travellers find traces of numerous cities wholly unknown to history.
Is Phoenicia properly so called, but during the period when by conquest it was united to the kingdom of Syria, it prefixed to its old name Phoenicia, that of Syria. The Canaanitish woman is called a Syrophoenician, Mr 7:26, because she was of Phoenicia, then considered as part of Syria. Matthew, who is by some supposed to have written in Hebrew or Syriac, calls her a Canaanitish woman, Mt 15:22, because that country was really people by Canaanites, Zidon being the eldest son of Canaan,
Ge 10:15. SeePHOENICIA, PHENICIA, or PHENICE.