1. One of the four women whose names are preserved in the records of the world before the flood; all except Eve being Cainites. Site was daughter of Lamech by his wife Zillah, and sister, as is expressly mentioned to Tubal-cain
only. (B.C. about 3550.)
2. Mother of King Rehoboam.
1Ki 14:21,31; 2Ch 12:13
In each of these passages she is distinguished by the title "the (not ‘an,’ as in Authorized Version) Ammonite." She was therefore one of the foreign women whom Solomon took into his establishment.
one of the towns of Judah in the district of the lowland or Shefelah.
Capt. Warren, in Report of Palestine Exploration Fund, 1871, locates it at Naameh, six miles northeast of Yebna.
1. "Naaman the Syrian."
Naaman was commander-in-chief of the army of Syria, and was nearest to the person of the king, Ben-hadad II., whom he accompanied officially and supported when he went to worship in the temple of Rimmon,
at Damascus, the capital. (B.C. 885.) A Jewish tradition at least as old as the time of Josephus, and which may very well be a genuine one identifies him with the archer whose arrow, whether at random or not, struck Ahab with his mortal wound, and thus "gave deliverance to Syria." The expression in
is remarkable —"because that by him Jehovah had given deliverance to Syria." The most natural explanation perhaps is that Naaman in delivering his country, had killed one who was the enemy of Jehovah not less than he was of Syria. Whatever the particular exploit referred to was, it had given Naaman a great position at the court of Ben-hadad. Naaman was afflicted with a leprosy of the white kind which had hitherto defied cure. A little Israelitish captive maiden tells him of the fame and skill of Elisha, and he is cured by him by following his simple directions to bathe in the Jordan seven times. See
His first business after his cure is to thank his benefactor and gratefully acknowledge the power of the God of Israel, and promise "henceforth to offer neither burnt offering nor sacrifice unto other gods, but unto the Lord." How long Naaman lived to continue a worshipper of Jehovah while assisting officially at the worship of Rimmon we are not told; ("but his memory is perpetuated by a leper hospital which occupies the traditional site of his house in Damascus, on the banks of the Abana." —Schaff.)
2. One of the family of Benjamin who came down to Egypt with Jacob as read in
He was the son of Bela, and head of the family of the Naamites.
Nu 26:40; 1Ch 8:3,4
the Gentile name of one of Job’s friends, Zophar the Naamathite.
Job 2:11; 11:1; 20:1; 42:9
There is no other trace of this name in the Bible, and the town whence it is derived is unknown. (But as Uz was in Arabia, probably the Naamah where he lived was on the Arabian borders of Syria.)
the family descended from Naaman, the grandson of Benjamin.
(a maiden), the second wife of Ashur; a descendant of Judah.
(handmaid), one of the valiant men of David’s armies.
In 1 Chron. he is called the son of Ezbai, but in
he appears as "Paarai the Arbite." Kennicott decides that the former is correct. (B.C. about 1015.)
(juvenile), a city of Ephraim, which in a very ancient record,
is mentioned as the eastern limit of the tribe. It is very probably identical with Naarath, or more accurately Naarah.
(juvenile) (the Hebrew is equivalent to Naarah, which is therefore the real form of the name), a place named
only as one of the landmarks on the southern boundary of Ephraim. It appears to have lain between Ataroth and Jericho, in the Jordan valley: Eusebius and Jerome speak of it as if well known to them —"Naorath, a small village of the Jews, five miles from Jericho."
(enchanter), the Greek form of the name NAHSHON.
Mt 1:4, Lu 3:32
(fool) was a sheepmaster on the confines of Judea and the desert, in that part of the country which bore from its great conqueror the name of Caleb.
1Sa 25:3; 30:14
(B.C. about 1055.) His residence was on the southern Carmel, in the pasture lands of Maon. His wealth, as might be expected from his abode, consisted chiefly of sheep and goats. It was the custom of the shepherds to drive them into the wild downs on the slopes of Carmel; and it was whilst they were on one of these pastoral excursions that they met a band of outlaws, who showed them unexpected kindness, protecting them by day and night, and never themselves committing any depredations.
Once a year there was a grand banquet on Carmel, "like the feast of a king." ch.
1Sa 25:2,4, 36
It was on one of these occasions that ten youths from the chief of the freebooters approached Nabal, enumerated the services of their master, and ended by claiming, with a mixture of courtesy and defiance characteristic of the East, "whatsoever cometh into thy hand for thy servants and for thy son David." The great sheepmaster peremptorily refused. The moment that the messengers were gone, the shepherds that stood by perceived the danger that their master and themselves would incur. To Nabal himself they durst not speak. ch.
To his wife, as to the good angel of the household, one of the shepherds told the state of affairs. She, with the offerings usual on such occasions, with her attendants running before her, rode down the hill toward David’s encampment. David had already made the fatal vow of extermination. ch.
At this moment, as it would seem, Abigail appeared, threw herself on her face before him, and poured forth her petition in language which in both form and expression almost assumes the tone of poetry. She returned with the news of David’s recantation of his vow. Nabal was then at the height of his orgies and his wife dared not communicate to him either his danger or his escape. ch.
At break of day she told him both. The stupid reveller was suddenly roused to a sense of that which impended over him. "His heart died within him, and he be came as a stone." It was as if a stroke of apoplexy or paralysis had fallen upon him. Ten days he lingered "and the Lord smote Nabal, and he died." ch.
(fruits), the victim of Ahab and Jezebel, was the owner of a small vineyard at Jezreel, close to the royal palace of Shab.
(B.C. 897.) It thus became an object of desire to the king, who offered an equivalent in money or another vineyard. In exchange for this Naboth, in the independent spirit of a Jewish landholder, refused: "The Lord forbid it me that I should give the inheritance of my father unto thee." Ahab was cowed by this reply; but the proud spirit of Jezebel was aroused. She took the matter into her own hands. A fast was proclaimed, as on the announcement of some impending calamity. Naboth was "set on high" in the public place of Samaria; two men of worthless character accused him of having "cursed God and the king." He and his children,
were dragged out of the city and despatched; the same night. The place of execution there was by the large tank or reservoir which still remains an the slope of the hill of Samaria, immediately outside the walls. The usual punishment for blasphemy was enforced: Naboth and his sons were stoned; and the blood from their wounds ran down into the waters of the tank below. For the signal retribution taken on this judicial murder —a remarkable proof of the high regard paid in the old dispensation to the claims of justice and independence —see AHAB; JEHU; JEZEBEL.
JEHU -See 7333
JEZEBEL -See 7413
(prepared)threshing floor, the place at which the ark had arrived in its progress from Kirjath-jearim to Jerusalem, when Uzzah lost his life in his too-hasty zeal for its safety.
1. The eldest son of Aaron and Elisheba. Exod 8 13 Numb 3:2. (B.C. 1490.) He, his father and brother, and seventy old men of Israel were led out from the midst of the assembled people,
and were commended to stay and worship God "afar off," below the lofty summit of Sinai, where Moses alone was to come near to the Lord. Subsequently,
Nadab and his brother were struck dead before the sanctuary by fire from the Lord. Their offence was kindling the incense in their censers with "strange" fire, i.e. not taken from that which burned perpetually,
on the altar.
2. King Jeroboam’s son, who succeeded to the throne of Israel B.C. 954, and reigned two years.
At the siege of Gibbethon a conspiracy broke out in the midst of the army, and the king was slain by Baasha, a man of Issachar.
3. A son of Shammai
of the tribe of Judah.
4. A son of Gibeon,
1Ch 8:30; 9:36
of the tribe of Benjamin.
(illuminating), the true form of NAGGE,
and so given in the Revised Version.
one of the ancestors of Christ.
(pasture), one of the cities of Zebulun, given with its "suburbs" to the Merarite Levites.
It is the same which in
is inaccurately given in the Authorized Version as Nahallal, the Hebrew being in both cases identical. Elsewhere it is called NAHALOL.
It is identified with the modern Malul, a village in the plain of Esdraelon.
(torrents of God), one of the halting-places of Israel in the latter part of their progress to Canaan.
It lay "beyond," that is, north of, the Amen, ver.
and between Mattanah and Bamoth, the next after Bamoth being Pisgah.
(consolation), the brother of Modiah or Jehudiah, wife of Ezra.
(merciful), a chief man among those who returned from Babylon with Zerubbabel and Jeshua.
(snorter) the armor-bearer of Joab, called NAHARI in the Authorized Version of
He was a native of Beeroth.
The same as NAHARAI.
In the Authorized Version of 1611 the name is printed "Naharai the Berothite."
1. King of the Ammonites who dictated to the inhabitants of Jabesh-gilead that cruel alternative of the loss of their right eyes or slavery which roused the swift wrath of Saul, and caused the destruction of the Ammonite force.
(B.C. 1092.) "Nahaph" would seem to have been the title of the king of the Ammonites rather than the name of an individual. Nahash the father of Hanun had rendered David some special and valuable service, which David was anxious for an opportunity of requiting.
2. A person mentioned once only—
—in stating the parentage of Amasa, the commander-in-chief of Absalom’s army. Amasa is there said to have been the son of a certain Ithra by Abigail, "daughter of Nahash and sister to Zeruiah." (B.C. before 1023.)
1. One of the "dukes" of Edom, eldest son of Reuel the son of Esau.
Ge 36:13,17; 1Ch 1:37
2. A Kohathite Levite, son of Zophai.
3. A Levite in the reign of Hezekiah.
(hidden), the son of Vophsi, a Naphtalite, and one of the twelve spies.
(snorting), the name of two persons in the family of Abraham.
1. His grandfather; the son of Serug and father of Terah.
2. Grandson of the preceding son of Terah and brother of Abraham and Haran.
(B.C. 2000.) The order of the ages of the family of Terah is not improbably inverted in the narrative; in which case Nahor instead of being younger than Abraham, was really older. He married Milcah, the daughter of his brother Haran; and when Abraham and Lot migrated to Canaan, Nahor remained behind in the land of his birth, on the eastern side of the Euphrates.
(enchanter) son of Amminadab, and prince of the children of Judah (as he is styled in the genealogy of Judah,)
at the time of the first numbering in the wilderness.
Ex 6:23; Nu 1:7
etc. His sister, Elisheba, was wife to Aaron, and his son, Salmon, was husband to Rahab after the taking of Jericho. He died in the wilderness, according to
(B.C. before 1451.)
(consolation). Nahum, called "the Elkoshite," is the seventh in order of the minor prophets. His personal history is quite unknown. The site of Elkosh, his native place, is disputed, some placing it in Galilee, others in Assyria. Those who maintain the latter view assume that the prophet’s parents were carried into captivity by Tiglath-pileser and that the prophet was born at the village of Alkush, on the east bank of the Tigris, two miles north of Mosul. On the other hand, the imagery of his prophecy is such lie would be natural to an inhabitant of Palestine,
to whom the rich pastures of Bashan the vineyards of Carmel and the blossoms of Lebanon were emblems of all that was luxuriant and fertile. The language employed in ch.
Na 1:15; 2:2
is appropriate to one who wrote for his countrymen in their native land. (McClintock and Strong come to the conclusion that Nahum was a native of Galilee that at the captivity of the ten tribes he escaped into Judah, and prophesied in the reign of Hezekiah, 726-698.—ED.) Prophecy of Nahum. —The date of Nahum a prophecy can be determined with as little precision as his birthplace. It is, however, certain that the prophecy was written before the final downfall of Nineveh and its capture by the Medes and Chaldeans, cir. B.C. 625. The allusions to the Assyrian power imply that it was still unbroken. ch.
Na 1:12; 2:8,13; 3:16-17
It is most probable that Nahum flourished in the latter half of the return of Hezekiah, and wrote his prophecy either in Jerusalem or its neighborhood. The subject of the prophecy is, in accordance with the superscription, "the burden of Nineveh," the destruction of which he predicts. As a poet Nahum occupies a high place in the first rank of Hebrew literature. His style is clear and uninvolved, though pregnant and forcible; his diction sonorous and rhythmical, the words re-echoing to the sense. Comp.
Na 2:4; 3:3
1. Of finger. (a) A nail or claw of man or animal. (b) A point or style e.g. for writing; see
2. (a) A nail,
also a tent-peg. Tent-pegs were usually of wood and of large size; but some times, as was the case with those used to fasten the curtains of the tabernacle of metal.
Ex 27:19; 38:20
(b) A nail, primarily a point. We are told that David prepared iron for the nails to be used in the temple; and as the holy of holies was plated with gold, the nails for fastening the plates were probably of gold.
(beauty), a village of Galilee, the gate of which is made illustrious by the raising of the widow’s son.
The modern Nein is situated on the northwestern edge of the "Little Hermon," or Jebel-ed-Duhy, where the ground falls into the plain of Esdraelon. The entrance to the place, where our Saviour met the funeral, must probably always have seen up the steep ascent from the plain; and here on the west side of the village, the rock is full of sepulchral caves.
(habitations), or more fully, "Naioth in Ramah," a place of Mount Ephraim, the birthplace of Samuel and Saul, and in which Samuel and David took refuge together after the latter had made his escape from the jealous fury of Saul.
1Sa 19:18,19,22,23; 20:1
It is evident from ver.
that Naioth was not actually in Ramah, Samuel’s habitual residence. In its corrected from the name signifies "habitations," and probably means the huts or dwellings of a school or college of prophets over which Samuel presided as Elisha did over those at Gilgal and Jericho.
1. Names of places. —These may be divided into two general classes —descriptive and historical. The former are such as mark some peculiarity of the locality, usually a natural one, e.g. Sharon, "plain" Gibeah, "hill;" Pisgah. "height." Of the second class of local names, some were given in honor of individual men, e.g. the city Enoch
etc. More commonly, however, such names were given to perpetuate that memory of some important historic occurrence. Bethel perpetuated through all Jewish history the early revelations of God to Jacob.
Ge 28:19, 35:15
Peniel etc. In forming compounds to serve as names of towns or other localities, some of the most common terms employed were Kir, a "wall" or "fortress;" Kirjath, "city;" En, "fountain;" Beer, "a well," etc. The names of countries were almost universally derived from the name of the first settlers or earliest historic population.
2. Names of persons. —Among the Hebrews each person received hut a single name. In the case of boys this was conferred upon the eighth day, in connection with the rite of circumcision.
comp. Gene 17:5-14 To distinguish an individual from others of the same name it was customary to add to his own proper name that of his father or ancestors. Sometimes the mother’s was used instead. Simple names in Hebrew, as in all languages, were largely borrowed from nature; e.g. Deborah, "bee;" Tamar, "a palm tree;" Jonah, "dove." Many names of women were derived from those of men by change of termination; e.g. Hammelech. "the king;" Harnmoleketh, "the queen." The majority of compound names have special religious or social significance being compounded either (1) with terms denoting relationship, as Abi or Ab father, as Abihud, "father of praise," Abimelech "father of the king;" Ben son, as Benoni, "son of my sorrow," Benjamin, "son of the right hand;" or (2) nouns denoting natural life, as am, "people," melech "king;" or (3) with names of God and Jah or Ja, shortened from "Jehovah." As outside the circle of Revelation, particularly among the Oriental nations, it is customary to mark one’s entrance into a new relation by a new name, in which case the acceptance of the new name involves the acknowledgment of the sovereignty of the name giver, so the importance and new sphere assigned to the organs of Revelation in God’s kingdom are frequently indicated by a change of name. Examples of this are Abraham,
Israel, as the designation of the spiritual character in place of Jacob, which designated the natural character.
orNao’mi (my delight), the wife of Elimelech and mother-in-law of Ruth.
etc.; Ruth 2:1 etc.; Ruth 3:1; 4:3 etc. (B.C. 1363.) The name is derived from a root signifying sweetness or pleasantness. Naomi left Judea with her husband and two sons, in a time of famine and went to the land of Moab. Here her husband and sons died; and on her return to Bethlehem she wished to be known as Mara, bitterness, instead of Naomi, sweetness.
(refreshment), the last but one of the sons of Ishmael.
Ge 25:15; 1Ch 1:31
(wrestling), the fifth son of Jacob; the second child name to him by Bilhah, Rachel’s slave. His birth and the bestowal of his name are recorded in
When the census was taken at Mount Sinai the tribe of Naphtali numbered no less than 53,400 fighting men,
Nu 1:43; 2:50
but when the borders of the promised land were reached, its numbers were reduced to, 45,400.
During the march through the wilderness Naphtali occupied a position on the north of the sacred tent with Dan and Asher.
In the apportionment of the land, the lot of Naphtali was enclosed on three sides by those of other tribes. On the west lay Asher, on the south Zebulun, and on the east the transjordanic Manasseh. (In the division of the kingdom Naphtali belonged to the kingdom of Israel, and later was a part of Galilee, bordering on the northwestern pert of the Sea of Galilee, and including Capernaum and Bethsaida. —Ed.)
the mountainous district which formed the main part of the inheritance of Naphtali,
answering to "Mount Ephraim" in the centre and "Mount Judah" in the south of Palestine.
(border-people), a Mizraite (Egyptian) nation or tribe mentioned only in the account of the descendants of Noah.
Ge 10:13; 1Ch 1:11
If we may judge from their position in the list Of the Mizraites, the Naphtuhim were possibly settled, at first, either in Egypt or immediately to the west of it.
(stupidity), a dweller at Rome,
some members of whose household were known us Christians to St. Paul. Some have assumed the identity of this Narcissus with the secretary of the emperor Claudius; but this is quite uncertain.
1. An eminent Hebrew prophet in the reigns of David and Solomon. (B.C. 1015.) He first appears in the consultation with David about the building of the temple.
He next comes forward as the reprover of David for the sin with Bathsheba; and his famous apologue on the rich man and the ewe lamb, which is the only direct example of his prophetic power, shows it to have been of a very high order.
2. A son of David; one of the four who were borne to him by Bathsheba.
comp, 1Chr 14:4 and 2Sam 5:14
3. Son or brother of one of the members of David’s guard.
2Sa 23:36; 1Ch 11:38
4. One of the head men who returned from Babylon with Ezra on his second expedition.
1 Esdr. 8:44. It is not impossible that he may be the same with the "son of Bani."
(gift of God), a disciple of Jesus Christ, concerning whom, under that name at least, we learn from Scripture little more than his birthplace, Cana of Galilee,
and his simple, truthful character.
The name does not occur in the first three Gospels; but it is commonly believed that Nathanael and Bartholomew are the same person. The evidence for that belief is as follows: St, John who twice mentions Nathanael, never introduces the name of Bartholomew at all. St. Matthew,
and St. Luke,
all speak of Bartholomew but never of Nathanael. If was Philip who first brought Nathanael to Jesus, just as Andrew had brought his brother Simon.
(the gift of the king), a eunuch (Authorized Version "chamberlain") in the court of Josiah.
(consolation), son of Esli, and father of Amos, in the genealogy of Christ,
about contemporary with the high priesthood of Jason all the reign of Antiochus Epiphanes. (B.C.175.)
(Heb. gao), anything convex or arched, as the boss of a shield,
an eminent place.
It is rendered once only in the plural, "naves,"
meaning the centres of the wheels in which the spokes are inserted i.e. the hubs. In
it is rendered twice "rings," and margin "strakes," an old word apparently used for the nave (hub) of a wheel and also more probably for the felloe or the tire, as making the streak or stroke upon the ground.
an inhabitant of Nazareth. This appellative is applied to,Jesus in many passages in the New Testament. This name, made striking in so many ways, and which, if first given in scorn, was adopted and gloried in by the disciples, we are told in
possesses a prophetic significance. Its application to Jesus, in consequence of the providential arrangements by which his Parents were led to take up their abode in Nazareth, was the filling out of the predictions in which the promised Messiah is described as a netser i.e. a shoot, sprout, of Jesse, a humble and despised descendant of the decayed royal family. Once,
the term Nazarenes is applied to the followers of Jesus by way of contempt. The name still exists in Arabic as the ordinary designation of Christians.
(the guarded one) the ordinary residence of our Saviour, is not mentioned in the Old Testament, but occurs first in
It derives its celebrity from its connection with the history of Christ, and in that respect has a hold on the imagination and feelings of men which it shares only with Jerusalem and Bethlehem. It is situated among the hills which constitute the south ridges of Lebanon,just before they sink down into the plain of Esdraelon, (Mr. Merrill, in "Galilee in the Time of Christ" (1881), represents Nazareth in Christ’s time as a city (so always called in the New Testament) of 15,000 to 20,000 inhabitants, of some importance and considerable antiquity, and not so insignificant and mean as has been represented. —ED.) Of the identification of the ancient site there can be no doubt. The name of the present village is en-Nazirah the same, therefore, as of old it is formed on a hill or mountain,
it is within the limits of the province of Galilee,
it is near Cana, according to the implication in
a precipice exists in the neighborhood.
The modern Nazareth belongs to the better class of eastern villages. It has a population of 3000 or 4000; a few are Mohammadans, the rest Latin and Greek Christians. (Near this town Napoleon once encamped (1799), after the battle of Mount Tabor.) The origin of the disrepute in which Nazareth stood,
is not certainly known. All the inhabitants of Galilee were looked upon with contempt by the people of Judea because they spoke a ruder dialect, were less cultivated and were more exposed by their position to contact with the heathen. But Nazareth labored under a special opprobrium, for it was a Galilean and not a southern Jew who asked the reproachful question whether "any good thing" could come from that source. Above the town are several rocky ledges, over which a person could not be thrown without almost certain destruction. There is one very remarkable precipice, almost perpendicular and forty or fifty near the Maronite church, which may well be supposed to be the identical one over which his infuriated fellow townsmen attempted to hurl Jesus.
more properly Naz’irite (one separated), one of either sex who was bound by a vow of a peculiar kind to be set apart from others for the service of God. The obligation was either for life or for a defined time. There is no notice in the Pentateuch of Nazarites for life; but the regulations for the vow of a Nazarite of days are given.
The Nazarite, during-the term of has consecration, was bound to abstain from wine grapes, with every production of the vine and from every kind of intoxicating drink. He was forbidden to cut the hair of his head, or to approach any dead body, even that of his nearest relation. When the period of his vow was fulfilled he was brought to the door of the tabernacle, and was required to offer a he lamb for a burnt offering, a ewe lamb for a sin offering, and a ram for a peace offering, with the usual accompaniments of peace offerings,
and of the offering made at the consecration of priests.
Ex 29:2; Nu 6:15
He brought also a meat offering and a drink offering, which appear to have been presented by themselves as a distinct act of service. ver.
He was to cut off the hair of "the head of his separation "(that is, the hair which had grown during the period of his consecration) at the door of the tabernacle, and to put it into the fire under the sacrifice on the altar. Of the Nazarites for life three are mentioned in the Scriptures —Samson, Samuel and St. John the Baptist. The only one of these actually called a Nazarite is Samson. We do not know whether the vow for life was ever voluntarily taken by the individual. In all the cases mentioned in the sacred history, it was made by the parents before the birth of the Nazarite himself. The consecration of the Nazarite bore a striking resemblance to that of the nigh priest.
The meaning of the Nazarite vow has been regarded in different lights. It may be regarded as an act of self-sacrifice, That it was essentially a sacrifice of the person to the Lord is obviously in accordance with the terms of the law.
As the Nazarite was a witness for the straitness of the law, as distinguished from the freedom of the gospel, his sacrifice of himself was a submission to the letter of the rule. Its outward manifestations were restraints and eccentricities. The man was separated from his brethren that he might be peculiarly devoted to the Lord. This was consistent with the purpose of divine wisdom for the time for which it was ordained.
(shaking) a place which was one of the landmarks on the boundary of Zebulun.
only. It has not yet been certainly identified.
(new city) is the place in northern Greece where Paul and his associates first landed in Europe.
where, no doubt, he landed also on his second visit to Macedonia,
and whence certainly he embarked on his last journey through that province to Troas and Jerusalem.
Philippi being an inland town, Neapolis was evidently the port, and is represented by the present Kavalla. (Kavalla is a city of 5000 or 6000 inhabitants, Greeks and Turks. Neapolis was situated within the bounds of Thrace, ten miles from Philippi, on a high rocky promontory jutting out into the AEgean Sea, while a temple of Diana crowned the hill-top. —ED.)
(servant of Jehovah).
1. One of the six sons of Shemaiah in the line of the royal family of Judah after the captivity.
(B.C. about 350.)
2. A son of Ishi, and one of the captains of the 500 Simeonites who in the days of Hezekiah, drove out the Amalekites from Mount Seir.
(fruitful), a family of the heads of the people who signed the covenant with Nehemiah.
(heights), the "first-born of Ishmael,"
Ge 25:13; 1Ch 1:29
(B.C. about 1850), and father of a pastoral tribe named after him, the "rams Of Nebaioth" being mentioned by the prophet Isaiah,
with the; flocks of Kedar. From the days of Jerome: this people had been identified with the Nabathaeans of Greek and Roman history Petra was their capital. (They first settled in the country southeast of Palestine, and wandered gradually in search of pasturage till they came to Kedar, of which Isaiah speaks. Probably the Nebaioth of Arabia Petrea were, as M. Quatremere argues the same people as the Nebat of Chaldea. —McClintock and Strong’s Cyclopedia.)
(hidden folly), town of Benjamin, one of those which the Benjamites reoccupied after the captivity.
(aspect), the father of Jeroboam,
1Ki 11:26; 12:2,15
etc., is described as an Ephrathite or Ephraimite of Zereda. (B.C. about 1000.)
(prophet), Mount, the mountain from which Moses took his first and last view of the promised land.
De 32:41; 34:1
It is described as in the land of Moab, facing Jericho; the head or summit of a mountain called Pisgah, which again seems to have formed a portion of the general range of Abarim. (Notwithstanding the minuteness of this description, it is only recently that any one has succeeded in pointing out any spot which answers to Nebo. Tristram identifies it with a peak (Jebel Nebbah) of the Abarim or Moab mountains, about three miles southwest of Heshban (Heshbon) and about a mile and a half due west of Baal-meon. "It overlooks the mouth of the Jordan, over against Jericho,"
and the gentle slopes of its sides may well answer to the "field of Zophim."
Jebel Nebbah is 2683 feet high. It is not an isolated peak but one of a succession of bare turf-clad eminences, so linked together that the depressions between them were mere hollows rather than valleys. It commands a wide prospect. Prof. Paine, of the American Exploration Society, contends that Jebel Nebbah, the highest point of the range, is Mount Nebo, that Jebel Siaghah, the extreme headland of the hill, is Mount Pisgah, and that "the mountains of Abarim "are the cliffs west of these points, and descending toward the Dead Sea. Probably the whole mountain or range was called sometimes by the name of one peak and sometimes by that of another as is frequently the case with mountains now. —ED.)
1. A town of Reuben on the east side of Jordan.
In the remarkable prophecy adopted by Isaiah,
concerning Moab, Nebo is mentioned in the same connection as before, but in the hands of Moab. Eusebius and Jerome identify it with Nobah or Kerrath, and place it eight miles South of Heshbon, where the ruins of el-Habis appear to stand at present. (Prof. Paine identifies it with some ruins on Mount Nebo, a mile south of its summit, and Dr. Robinson seems to agree with this. —ED.)
2. The children of Nebo returned from Babylon with Zerubbabel.
Ezr 2:29; 10:43; Ne 7:33
The name occurs between Bethel and Ai and Lydda, which implies that it was situated in the territory of Benjamin to the northwest of Jerusalem. This is possibly the modern Beit-Nubah, about 12 miles northwest by west of Jerusalem, 8 from Lydda.
3. Nebo, which occurs both in Isaiah,
as the name of a Chaldean god, is a well known deity of the Babylonians and Assyrians. He was the god who presided over learning and letters. His general character corresponds to that of the Egyptian Thoth the Greek Hermes and the Latin Mercury. Astronomically he is identified with the planet nearest the sun. In Babylonia Nebo held a prominent place from an early time. The ancient town of Borsippa was especially under his protection, and the great temple here, the modern Birs-Nimrud, was dedicated to him from a very remote age. He was the tutelar god of the most important Babylonian kings, in whose names the word Nabu or Nebo appears as an element.
(may Nebo protect the crown), was the greatest and most powerful of the Babylonian kings. His name is explained to mean "Nebo is the protector against misfortune." He was the son and successor of Nabopolassar, the founder of the Babylonian empire. In the lifetime of his father Nebuchadnezzar led an army against Pharaoh-necho, king of Egypt, defeated him at Carchemish, B.C. 605, in a great battle
recovered Coele-Syria, Phoenicia and Palestine, took Jerusalem,
pressed forward to Egypt, and was engaged in that country or upon its borders when intelligence arrived which recalled him hastily to Babylon. Nabopolassar, after reigning twenty-one years, had died and the throne was vacant. In alarm about the succession Nebuchadnezzar returned to the capital, accompanied only by his light troops; and crossing the desert, probably by way of Tadmor or Palmyra, reached Babylon before any disturbance had arisen and entered peaceably on his kingdom, B.C. 604. Within three years of Nebuchadnezzar’s first expedition into Syria and Palestine, disaffection again showed itself in those countries. Jehoiakim, who, although threatened at first with captivity,
had been finally maintained on the throne as a Babylonian vassal, after three years of service "turned and rebelled" against his suzerain, probably trusting, to be supported by Egypt.
Not long afterward Phoenicia seems to have broken into revolt, and the Chaldean monarch once more took the field in person, and marched first of all against Tyre. Having invested that city and left a portion of his army there to continue the siege, he proceeded against Jerusalem, which submitted without a struggle. According to Josephus, who is here our chief authority, Nebuchadnezzar punished Jehoiakim with death, comp.
and Jere 36:30 but placed his son Jehoiachin upon the throne. Jehoiachin reigned only three months; for, on his showing symptoms of disaffection, Nebuchadnezzar came up against Jerusalem for the third time, deposed the son’s prince whom he carried to Babylon, together with a large portion of the population of the city and the chief of the temple treasures), and made his uncle, Zedekiah, king in his room. Tyre still held out; and it was not till the thirteenth year from the time of its first investment that the city of merchants fell, B.C. 585. Ere this happened, Jerusalem had been totally destroyed. Nebuchadnezzar had commenced the final siege of Jerusalem in the ninth year of Zedekiah —his own seventeenth year (B.C. 588)—and took it two years later, B.C. 586. Zedekiah escaped from the city, but was captured near Jericho,
and brought to Nebuchadnezzar at Riblah in the territory of Hamath, where his eyes were put out by the king’s order while his sons and his chief nobles were Plain. Nebuchadnezzar then returned to Babylon with Zedekiah, whom he imprisoned for the remainder of his life. The military successes of Nebuchadnezzar cannot be traced minutely beyond this point. It may be gathered from the prophetical Scriptures and from Josephus that the conquest of Jerusalem was rapidly followed by the fall of Tyre and the complete submission of Phoenicia, Ezek 26-28 after which the Babylonians carried their arms into Egypt, and inflicted severe injuries on that fertile country.
Jer 46:13-26; Eze 23:2-20
We are told that the first care of Nebuchadnezzar, on obtaining quiet possession of his kingdom after the first Syrian expedition, was to rebuild the temple of Bel (Bel-Merodach) at Babylon out of the spoils of the Syrian war. The next proceeded to strengthen and beautify the city, which he renovated throughout and surrounded with several lines of fortifications, himself adding one entirely new quarter. Having finished the walls and adorned the gates magnificently, he constructed a new palace. In the grounds of this palace he formed the celebrated "hanging garden," which the Greeks placed among the seven wonders of the world. But he did not confine his efforts to the ornamentation and improvement of his capital. Throughout the empire at Borsippa, Sippara, Cutha, Chilmad, Duraba, Teredon, and a multitude of other places, he built or rebuilt cities, repaired temples, constructed quays, reservoirs, canals and aqueducts, on a scale of grandeur and magnificence surpassing everything of the kind recorded in history unless it be the constructions of one or two of the greatest Egyptian monarchs. The wealth greatness and general prosperity of Nebuchadnezzar are strikingly placed before us in the book of Daniel. Toward the close of his reign the glory of Nebuchadnezzar suffered a temporary eclipse. As a punishment for his pride and vanity, that strange form of madness was sent upon him which the Greeks called Lycanthropy, wherein the sufferer imagines himself a beast, and, quitting the haunts of men, insists on leading the life of a beast.
(This strange malady is thought by some to receive illustration from an inscription; and historians place at this period the reign of a queen to whom are ascribed the works which by others are declared to be Nebuchadnezzar’s. Probably his favorite wife was practically at the head of affairs during the malady of her husband. Other historians, Eusebius and Berosus also confirm the account. See Rawlinson’s "Historical Illustrations." —ED. ) After an interval of four or perhaps seven years,
Nebuchadnezzar’s malady left him. We are told that "his reason returned, and for the glory of his kingdom his honor and brightness returned;" and he "was established in his kingdom, and excellent majesty was added to him."
He died in the year B.C. 561, at an advanced age (eighty-three or eighty-four), having reigned forty-three years. A son, Evilmerodach, succeeded him.
(Nebo saves me), one of the officers of Nebuchadnezzar at the time of the capture of Jerusalem. He was Rab-saris, i.e. a chief of the eunuchs.
Nebushasban’s office and title were the same as those of Ashpenaz,
whom he probably succeeded.
(chief whom Nebo favors), the Rab-tabbachim i.e. chief of the slaughterers (Authorized Version "captain of the guard"), a high officer in the court of Nebuchadnezzar. On the capture of Jerusalem he was left by Nebuchadnezzar in charge of the city. Comp.
He seems to have quitted Judea when he took down the chief people of Jerusalem to his master at Riblah.
In four years he again appeared.
Nebuchadnezzar in his twenty-third year made a descent on the regions east of Jordan, including the Ammonites and Moabites, who escaped when Jerusalem was destroyed. Thence he proceeded to Egypt, and, either on the way thither or on the return, Nebuzaradan again passed through the country and carried off more captives.
2Ch 35:20,22; 36:4
(whom Jehovah impels) apparently one of the sons of Jeconiah or Jehoiachin, king of Judah.
(stringed instruments), the singular of Neginoth. If occurs in the title of
It is the general term by which all stringed instruments are described. "The chief musician on Neginoth" was therefore the conductor of that portion of the temple-choir who played upon the stringed instruments, and who are mentioned in
the designation of a man named Shemaiah, a false prophet, who went with the captivity to Babylon.
The name is no doubt formed from that either of Shemaiah’s native place or the progenitor of his family which of the two is uncertain.
(consolation of the Lord).
1. Son of Hachaliah, and apparently of the tribe of Judah. All that we know certainly concerning him is contained in the book which bears his name. We first find him at Shushan, the winter residence of the kings of Persia, in high office as the cupbearer of King Artaxerxes Longimanus. In the twentieth year of the king’s reign, i.e. B.C. 445, certain Jews arrived from Judea, and gave Nehemiah a deplorable account of the state of Jerusalem. He immediately conceived the idea of going to Jerusalem to endeavor to better their state, and obtained the king’s consent to his mission. Having received his appointment as governor of Judea, he started upon his journey, being under promise to return to Persia within a given time. Nehemiah’s great work was rebuilding, for the first time since their destruction by Nebuzar-adan, the walls of Jerusalem, and restoring that city to its former state and dignity as a fortified town. To this great object therefore Nehemiah directed his whole energies without an hour’s unnecessary delay. In a wonderfully short time the walls seemed to emerge from the heaps of burnt rubbish, end to encircle the city as in the days of old. It soon became apparent how wisely Nehemiah had acted in hastening on the work. On his very first arrival, as governor, Sanballat and Tobiah had given unequivocal proof of their mortification at his appointment; but when the restoration was seen to be rapidly progressing, their indignation knew no bounds. They made a great conspiracy to fall upon the builders with an armed force and put a stop to the undertaking. The project was defeated by the vigilance and prudence of Nehemiah. Various stratagems were then resorted to get Nehemiah away from Jerusalem and if possible to take his life; but that which most nearly succeeded was the attempt to bring him into suspicion with the king of Persia, as if he intended to set himself up as an independent king as soon as the walls were completed. The artful letter of Sanballat so-far wrought upon Artaxerxes that he issued a decree stopping the work till further orders. If is probable that at the same time he recalled Nehemiah, or perhaps his leave of absence had previously expired. But after a delay, perhaps of several years he was permitted to return to Jerusalem land to crown his work by repairing the temple and dedicating the walls. During his government Nehemiah firmly repressed the exactions of the nobles and the usury of the rich, and rescued the poor Jews from spoliation and slavery. He refused to receive his lawful allowance as governor from the people, in consideration of their poverty, during the whole twelve years that he was in office but kept at his own charge a table for 150 Jews, at which any who returned from captivity were welcome. He made most careful provision for the maintenance of the ministering priests and Levites and for the due and constant celebration of divine worship. He insisted upon the sanctity of the precincts of the temple being preserved inviolable, and peremptorily ejected the powerful Tobiah from one of the chambers which Eliashib had assigned to him. With no less firmness and impartiality he expelled from all sacred functions those of the high priest’s family who had contracted heathen marriages, and rebuked and punished those of the common people who had likewise intermarried with foreigners; and lastly, he provided for keeping holy the Sabbath day, which was shamefully profaned by many both Jews and foreign merchants, and by his resolute conduct succeeded in repressing the lawless traffic on the day of rest. Beyond the thirty-second year of Artaxerxes, to which Nehemiah’s own narrative leads us, we have no account of him whatever.
2. One of the leaders of the first expedition from Babylon to Jerusalem under Zerabbabel.
Ezr 2:2; Ne 7:7
3. Son of Azbuk and ruler of the half part of Beth-zur, who helped to repair the wall of Jerusalem.
Nehemi’ah, The book of,
like the preceding one of Ezra, is clearly and certainly not all by the same hand. [EZRA, BOOK OF] By far the most important portion, indeed is the work of Nehemiah but other portions are either extracts from various chronicles and registers or supplementary narratives and reflections, some apparently by Ezra, others, perhaps the work of the same person who inserted the latest, genealogical extracts from the public chronicles. The main history contained in the book of Nehemiah covers about twelve years, viz., from the twentieth to the thirty-second year of Artaxerxes Langimanus i.e. from B.C. 445 to 433. The whole narrative gives us a graphic and interesting account of the state of Jerusalem and the returned captives in the writer’s times, and, incidentally, of the nature of the Persian government and the condition of its remote provinces, The book of Nehemiah has always had an undisputed place in the Canon, being included by the Hebrews under the general head of the book of Ezra, and, as Jerome tells us in the Prolog. Gal., by the Greeks and Latins under the name of the second book of Ezra.
The title of
in the Authorized Version is rendered "To the chief musician upon Nehiloth." It is most likely that nehiloth is the general term for perforated wind-instruments of all kinds, as neginoth denotes all manner of stringed instruments.
(consolation), one of those who returned from Babylon with Zerubbabel.
(brass), the daughter of Elnathan of Jerusalem, wife of Jehoiakim and mother of Jehoiachin, kings of Judah.
(a thing of brass), the name by which the brazen serpent made by Moses in the wilderness,
was worshipped in the time of Hezekiah.
It is evident that our translators by their rendering "and he called it Nehushtan" understood that the subject of the sentence is Hezekiah and that when he destroyed the brazen serpent he gave it the name Nehushtan "a brazen thing" in token of his utter contempt. But it is better to understand the Hebrew as referring to the name by which the serpent was generally known, the subject of the verb being indefinite— "and one called it ‘Nehushtan.’"
(moved by God), a place which formed one of the landmarks of the boundary of the tribe of Asher.
only. It occurs between Jiphthahel and Cabul. If the former of these be identified with Jefat, and the latter with Kabul, eight or nine miles east-southeast of Akka, then Neiel may possibly be represented by Mi’ar, a village conspicuously placed on a lofty mountain brow, just halfway between the two.
(cavern), one of the towns on the boundary of Naphtali.
It lay between Adami and Jabneel. A great number of commentators have taken this name as being connected with the preceding.
1. The descendants of Nekoda returned among the Nethinim after the captivity.
Ezr 2:48; Ne 7:50
2. The sons of Nekoda were among those who went up after the captivity from Tel-melah, Tel-harsa, and other places, but were unable to prove their descent from Israel.
Ezr 2:60; Ne 7:62
(day of God).
1. A Reubenite, son of Eliab and eldest brother of Dathan and Abiram.
2. The eldest son of Simeon,
Nu 26:12; 1Ch 4:24
from whom were descended the family of the Nemuelites. In
he is called JERIUEL.
1. One of the sons of Izhar the son of Kohath.
2. One of David’s sons born to him in Jerusalem.
2Sa 5:15; 1Ch 3:7; 14:6
(refreshed), an inaccurate variation (found in
only) of the name Nephish.
(expansions). The children of Nephishesim were among the Nethinim who returned with Zerubbabel.
A form of the name Naphtali.
Job 7:3; Mt 4:13,15; Re 7:6
(opening),The water of. The spring or source of the water or (inaccurately) waters of Nephtoah was one of the landmarks in the boundary line which separated Judah from Benjamin.
Jos 15:9; 18:15
It lay northwest of Jerusalem in which direction, it seems to have been satisfactorily identified in Ain Lifta, a spring situated a little distance above the village of the same name.
(expansions), the same as Nephishesim, of which name according to Gesenius it is the proper form.
(a light or lamp), son of Jehiel, according to
father of Abner, and grandfather of King Saul. (B.C. 1140.) Abner was, therefore, uncle to Saul, as is expressly stated in
(lamp), a Christian at Rome, saluted by St. Paul.
According to tradition he was beheaded at Terracina, probably in the reign of Nerva.
(hero), one of the chief Assyrian and Babylonian deities, seems to have corresponded closely to the classical Mars.
It is conjectured that he may represent the deified Nimrod.
(prince of fire) occurs only in
and Jere 39:13 There appear to have been two persons in the name among the "princes of the king of Babylon" who accompanied Nebuchadnezzar on his last expedition against Jerusalem. One of these is not marked by any additional title; but the other has the honorable distinction of Rab-mag, probably meaning chief of the Magi [see RAB-MAG], and it is to him alone that any particular interest attaches. In sacred Scripture he appears among the persons who, by command of Nebuchadnezzar, released Jeremiah from prison. Profane history gives us reason to believe that he was a personage of great importance, who not long afterward mounted the Babylonian throne. He is the same as the monarch called Neriglissar or Neriglissor, who murdered Evil-merodach, the son of Nebuchadnezzar and succeeded him upon the throne. His reign lasted from B.C. 559, to B.C. 556.
short form for NERIAH (Jehovah is my lamp) son of Melchi and father of Salathiel, in the genealogy of Christ.
(lamp of Jehovah), the son of Maaseiah and father of Baruch and Seraiah.
(given of God).
1. The son of Zuar and prince of the tribe of Issachar at the time of the exodus.
Nu 1:8; 2:5; 7:18
2. The fourth son of Jesse and brother of David.
3. A priest in the reign of David who blew the trumpet before the ark when it was brought from the house of Obededom.
4. A Levite, father of Shemaiah the scribe, in the reign of David.
5. A son of Obed-edom.
6. One of the princes of Judah whom Jehoshaphat sent to teach in the cities of his kingdom.
7. A chief of the Levites in the reign of Josiah.
8. A priest of the family of Pashur, in the time of Ezra, who married a foreign wife. (B.C. 458.)
9. The representative of the priestly family of Jedaiah in the time of Joiakim.
10. A Levite, of the sons of Asaph, who with his brethren played upon the musical instruments of David at the dedication of the wall of Jerusalem under Ezra and Nehemiah.
(given of Jehovah).
1. The son of Elishama, and father of Ishmael who murdered Gedaliah.
He was of the royal family of Judah. (B.C. 620.)
2. One of the four sons of Asaph the minstrel.
3. A Levite in the reign of Jehoshaphat.
4. The father of Jehudi.
(given, dedicated), As applied specifically to a distinct body of men connected with the services of the temple, this name first meets us in the later books of the Old Testament— in 1 Chronicles, Ezra and Nehemiah, The word and the ideas embodied in it may, however, be traced to a much earlier period. As derived from the verb nathan, i.e. give, set apart, dedicate, it was applied to those who were pointed to the liturgical offices of the tabernacle. We must not forget that the Levites were given to Aaron and his sons, i.e. to the priests as an order, and were accordingly the first Nethinim.
Nu 3:9; 8:19
At first they were the only attendants, and their work must have been laborious enough. The first conquests, however, brought them their share of the captive slaves of the Midianites and 320 were given to them as having charge of the tabernacle,
while 32 only were assigned specially to the priests. This disposition to devolve the more laborious offices of their ritual upon slaves of another race showed itself again in the treatment of the Gibeonites. No addition to the number thus employed pears to have been mad ring the period of the judges, and they continued to be known by their own name as the Gibeonites. Either the massacre at Nob had involved the Gibeonites as well as the priests,
or else they had fallen victims to some other outburst of Saul’s fury; and though there were survivors,
the number was likely to be quite inadequate for the greater stateliness of the new worship at Jerusalem. It is to this period accordingly that the origin of the class bearing this name may be traced. The Nethinim were those "whom David and the princes appointed (Heb. gave) for the service of the Levites."
At this time the Nethinim probably lived within the precincts of the temple, doing its rougher work and so enabling the Levites to take a higher position as the religious representatives and instructors of the people. The example set by David was followed by his successor.
(distillation), a town the name of which occurs only in the catalogue of those who returned with Zerubbabel from the captivity.
Ezr 2:22; Ne 7:26
1 Esdr. 5:18. But, though not directly mentioned till so late a period, Netophah was really a much older place. Two of David’s guard,
were Netophathites. The "villages of the Neophathites" were the residence of the Levites.
From another notice we learn that the particular Levites who inhabited these villages were singers.
To judge from
the town was in the neighborhood of, or closely connected with, Bethlehem.
an inhabitant of Neophah.
a well-known plant covered with minute sharp hairs; containing a poison that produces a painful, stifling sensation. It grows on neglected ground. A different Hebrew word in
Job 30:7; Pr 24:31; Zep 2:9
seems to indicate a different species.
The first day of the lunar month was observed as a holy day. In addition to the daily sacrifice there were offered two young bullocks, a ram and seven lambs of the first year as a burnt offering, with the proper meat offerings and drink offerings, and a kid as a sin offering.
As on the Sabbath, trade and handicraft work were stopped,
and the temple was opened for public worship.
Isa 66:23; Eze 46:3
The trumpets were blown at the offering of the special sacrifices for the day, as on the solemn festivals.
Nu 10:10; Ps 81:3
It was an occasion for state banquets.
In later, if not in earlier, times fasting was intermitted at the new moons. Judith 8:6. The new moons are generally mentioned so as to show that they were regarded as a peculiar class of holy days, distinguished from the solemn feasts and the Sabbaths.
1Ch 113:31; 2Ch 2:4; 8:13; 31;3; Ezr 3:5; Ne 10:33; Eze
The seventh new moon of the religious year, being that of Tisri, commenced the civil year, and had a significance and rites of its own. It was a day of holy convocation. The religious observance of the day of the new moon may plainly be regarded as the consecration of a natural division of time.
It is proposed in this article to consider the text of the New Testament. The subject naturally divides itself into— I. The history of the written text; II. The history of the printed text. I. THE HISTORY OF THE WRITTEN TEXT.—
1. The early history of the apostolic writings externally, as far as it can be traced, is the same as that of other contemporary books. St. Paul, like Cicero or Pliny often employed the services of an amanuensis, to whom he dictated his letters, affixing the salutation "with his own hand."
1Co 16:21; 2Th 3:17; Col 4:18
The original copies seem to have soon perished.
2. In the natural course of things the apostolic autographs would be likely to perish soon. The material which was commonly used for letters the papyrus paper, to which St. John incidentally alludes.
comp. 3Joh 1:13 was singularly fragile, and even the stouter kinds, likely to be used for the historical books, were not fitted to bear constant use. The papyrus fragments which have come down to the present time have been preserved under peculiar circumstances as at Herculaneum or in the Egyptian tombs.
3. In the time of the Diocletian persecution, A.D. 303, copies of the Christian Scriptures were sufficiently numerous to furnish a special object for persecutors. Partly, perhaps, owing to the destruction thus caused, but still more from the natural effects of time. no MS. of the New Testament of the first three centuries remains but though no fragment of the New Testament of the first century still remains, the Italian and Egyptian papyri, which are of that date give a clear notion of the caligraphy of the period. In these the text is written in columns, rudely divided, in somewhat awkward capital letters (uncials), without any punctuation or division of words; and there is no trace of accents or breathings.
4. In addition to the later MSS. the earliest versions and patristic quotations give very important testimony to the character and history of the ante-Nicene text; but till the last quarter of the second century this source of information fails us. Only are the remains of Christian literature up to that time extremely scanty, but the practice of verbal quotation from the New Testament was not yet prevalent. As soon as definite controversies arose among Christians, the text of the New Testament assumed its true importance.
5. Several very important conclusions follow from this earliest appearance of textual criticism. It is in the first place evident that various readings existed in the books of the New Testament at a time prior to all extant authorities. History affords a trace of the pure apostolic originals. Again, from the preservation of the first variations noticed, which are often extremely minute, in one or more of the primary documents still left, we may be certain that no important changes have been made in the sacred text which we cannot now detect.
6. Passing from these isolated quotations, we find the first great witnesses to the apostolic text in the early Syriac and Latin versions and in the rich quotations of Clement of Alexandria (cir. A.D. 220) and Origen (A.D. 1842~4). From the extant works of Origen alone no inconsiderable portion of the whole New Testament might be transcribed; and his writings are an almost inexhaustible store house for the history of the text. There can be no doubt that in Origen’s time the variations in the New Testament MSS. were beginning to lead to the formation of specific groups of copies.
7. The most ancient MSS. and versions now extant exhibit the characteristic differences which have been found to exist in different parts of the works of Origen. These cannot have had their source later than the beginning of the third century, and probably were much earlier. Bengel was the first (1734) who pointed out the affinity of certain groups of MSS., which as he remarks, must have arisen before the first versions were made. The honor of carefully determining the relations of critical authorities for the New Testament text belongs to Griesbach. According to him two distinct recensions of the Gospels existed at the beginning of the third century-the Alexandrine and the Western.
8. From the consideration of the earliest history of the New Testament text we now pass to the era of MSS. The quotations of Dionsius Alex. (A.D. 264), Petrus Alex. (cir. A.D. 312), Methodius (A.D. 311) and Eusebius (A.D. 340) confirm the prevalence of the ancient type of tent; but the public establishment of Christianity in the Roman empire necessarily led to important changes. The nominal or real adherence of the higher ranks to the Christian faith must have largely increased the demand for costly MSS. As a natural consequence the rude Hellenistic forms gave way before the current Greek, and at the same time it is reasonable to believe that smoother and fuller constructions were substituted for the rougher turns of the apostolic language. In this way the foundation of the Byzantine text was laid. Meanwhile the multiplication of copies in Africa and Syria was checked by Mohammedan conquests.
9. The appearance of the oldest MSS. have been already described. The MSS. of the fourth century, of which Codex Vaticanus may be taken as a type present a close resemblance to these. The writing is in elegant continuous uncials (capitals), in three columns, without initial letters or iota subscript or adscript. A small interval serves as a simple punctuation; and there are no accents or breathings by the hand of the first writer, though these have been added subsequently. Uncial writing continued in general use till the middle of the tenth century. From the eleventh century downward cursive writing prevailed. The earliest cursive biblical MS, is dated 964 A.D. The MSS. of the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries abound in the contractions which afterward passed into the early printed books. The oldest MSS. are written on the thinnest and finest vellum; in later copies the parchment is thick and coarse. Papprus was very rarely used after the ninth century. In the tenth century cotton paper was generally employed in Europe; and one example at least occurs of its use in the ninth century. In the twelfth century the common linen or rag paper came into use. One other kind of material requires notice —re-dressed parchment, called palimpsests. Even at a very early period the original text of a parchment MS. was often erased, that the material might be used afresh. In lapse of time the original writing frequently reappeared in faint lines below the later text, and in this way many precious fragments of biblical MSS. which had been once obliterated for the transcription of other works, have been recovered.
10. The division of the Gospels into "chapters" must have come into general use some time before the fifth century. The division of the Acts and Epistles into chapters came into use at a later time. It is commonly referred to Euthalius, who, however, says that he borrowed the divisions of the Pauline Epistles from an earlier father and there is reason to believe that the division of the Acts and Catholic Epistles which he published was originally the work of Pamphilus the martyr. The Apocalypse was divided into sections by Andreas of Caesarea about A.D. 500. The titles of the sacred books are from their nature additions to the original text. The distinct names of the Gospels imply a collection, and the titles of the Epistles are notes by the possessors, and not addresses by the writers.
11. Very few MSS. certain the whole New Testament —twenty-seven in all out of the vast mass of extant documents. Besides the MSS. of the New Testament, or of parts of it, there are also lectionaries, which contain extracts arranged for the church services.
12. The number of uncial MSS. remaining. though great when compared with the ancient MSS. extent of other writings, is inconsiderable. Tischendorf reckons forty in the Gospels. In these must be added Cod. Sinait., which is entire; a new MS. of Tischendorf, which is nearly entire; and Cod. Zacynth., Which contains considerable fragments of St. Luke. In the Acts there are nine: in the Catholic Epistles five; in the Pauline Epistles fourteen; in the Apocalypse three.
13. A complete description these MSS. is given In the great critical editions of the New Testament. Here those only can be briefly noticed which are of primary importance, the first place being given to the latest-discovered and most complete Codex Sinaiticus —the Cod. Frid. Aug. of LXX. at St. Petersburg, obtained by Tischendorf from the convent of St. Catherine, Mount Sinai, in 1859. The New Testament is entire, and the Epistle of Bamabas and parts of the Shepherd of Hermas are added. It is probably the oldest of the MSS. of the New Testament and of the fourth century. Codex Alexandrinus (Brit. Mus.), a MS. of the entire Greek Bible, with the Epistles of Clement added. It was given-by Cyril Lucar, patriarch of Constantinople, to Charles I. in 1628, and is now in the British Museum. It contains the whole of the New Testament, with some chasms. It was probably written in the first half of the fifth century. Codex Vaticanus (1209) a MS. of the entire Greek Bible which seems to have been in the Vatican Library almost from its commencement (cir. A.D. 1450). It contains the New Testament entire to
katha: the rest of the Epistle to the Hebrews, the Pastoral Epistles and the Apocalypse were added in the fifteenth century. The MS. is assigned to the fourth century. Codex Ephraemi rescriptus (Paris, Bibl, Imp. 9), a palimpsest MS. which contains fragments of the LXX. and of every part of the New Testament. In the twelfth century the original writing was effaced and some Greek writings of Ephraem Syrus were written over it. The MS was brought to Florence from the East at the beginning of the sixteenth century, and came thence to Paris with Catherine de Medici. The only entire books which have perished are 2 Thess. and 2 John.
14. The number of the cursive MSS. (minuscules) in existence cannot be accurately calculated. Tischendorf catalogues about 500 of the Gospels, 200 of the Acts and Catholic Epistles, 250 of the Pauline Epistles, and a little less than 100 of the Apocalypse (exclusive of lectionaries); but this enumeration can only be accepted as a rough approximation,
15. Having surveyed in outline the history of the transmission of the written text and the chief characteristics of the MSS. in which it is preserved, we are in a position to consider the extent and nature of the variations which exist in different copies. It is impossible to estimate the number of these exactly, but they cannot be less than 120,000 in all, though of these a very large proportion consists of differences of spelling and isolated aberrations of scribes and of the remainder comparatively few alterations are sufficiently well supported to create reasonable doubt as to the final judgment. Probably there are not more than 1600-2000 places in which the true reading is a matter of uncertainty.
16. Various causes: readings are due to some arose from accidental, others from intentional alterations of the original text.
17. Other variations are due to errors of sight. Others may be described as errors of impression or memory. The copyist, after reading a sentence from the text before him, often failed to reproduce it exactly. Variations of order are the most frequent and very commonly the most puzzling questions of textual criticism. Examples occur in every page, almost in every verse, of the New Testament.
18. Of intentional changes some affect the expression, others the substance of the passage.
19. The number of readings which seem to have been altered for distinctly dogmatic reasons is extremely small. In spite of the great revolutions in thought, feeling and practice through which the Christian Church passed In fifteen centuries, the copyists of the New Testament faithfully preserved, according to their ability, the sacred trust committed to them. There is not any trace of intentional revision designed to give support to current opinions.
Mt 17:21, Mr 9:29, 1Co 7:5
need scarcely be noticed.
20. The great mass of various readings are simply variations in form. There are, however, one or two greater variations of a different character. The most important of these are
and John 7:53 ... 8:12; Roma 16:25-27 The first stands quite by itself and there seems to be little doubt that it contains an authentic narrative but not by the hand of St. John. The two others taken in connection with the last chapter of St. John’s Gospel, suggest the possibility that the apostolic writings may have undergone in some cases authoritative revision.
21. Manuscripts, it must be remembered, are but one of the three sources of textual criticism. The versions and patristic quotations are scarcely less important in doubtful cases. II. THE HISTORY OF THE PRINTED TEXT. —The history of the printed text of the New Testament may be these divided into three periods. The extends from the labors of the Complutensian errors to those of Mill; the second from Mill to Scholz; the third from Lachmann to the present time. The criticism of the first period was necessarily tentative and partial: the materials available for the construction of the text were few and imperfectly known. The second period made a great progress: the evidence of MSS. of versions, of the fathers, was collected with the greatest diligence and success; authorities were compared and classified; principles of observation and judgment were laid down. But the influence of the former period still lingered. The third period was introduced by the declaration of a new and sounder law. It was laid down that no right of possession could be pleaded against evidence, The "received" text, as such, was allowed no weight whatever. Its authority, on this view, must depend solely on critical worth. From first to last, in minute details of order and orthography, as well as in graver questions of substantial alteration, the text must be formed by a free and unfettered judgment. The following are the earliest editions:
1. The Complutensian Polyglot.-The glory of printing the first Greek Testament is due to the princely Cardinal Ximenes. This great prelate as early as 1502 engaged the services of a number of scholars to superintend an edition of the whole Bible in the original Hebrew and Greek, with the addition of the Chaldee Targum of Onkelos, the LXX. version and the Vulgate. The volume containing the New Testament was Printed first, and was completed on January 10, 1524. The whole work was not finished till July 10, 1517. (It was called Complutensian because it was printed at Complutum, in Spain. —ED.)
2. The edition of Erasmus. —The edition of Erasmus was the first published edition of the New Testament. Erasmus had paid considerable attention to the study of the New Testament, when he received an application from Froben, a Printer of Basle with whom he was acquainted, to prepare a Greek text for the press. The request was made on April 17, 1515 and the whole work was finished in February, 1516.
3. The edition of Stephens. —The scene of our history now changes from Basle to Paris. In 1543, Simon de Colines: (Colinaeus) published a Greek text of the New Testament, corrected in about 150 places on fresh MS. authority. Not long after it appeared, R. Estienne (Stephanus) published his first edition (1546), which was based on a collation of MSS, in the Royal Library with the Complutensian text.
4. The editions of Beta and Elzevir. —The Greek text of Beta (dedicated to Queen Elizabeth) was printed by H. Stephens in 1565 and a second edition in 1576; but the chief edition was the third, printed in 1582, which contained readings from Codez Bezae and Codex Clarontontanus. The literal sense of the apostolic, writings must be gained in the same way as the literal sense of any other writings-by the fullest use of every appliance of scholarship, and the most complete confidence in the necessary and absolute connection of words and thoughts. No variation of phrase, no peculiarity of idiom, no change of tense, no change of order, can be neglected. The truth lies in the whole expression, and no one can presume to set aside any part as trivial or indifferent. The importance of investigating most patiently and most faithfully the literal meaning of the sacred text must be felt with tenfold force when it is remembered that the literal sense is the outward embodiment of a spiritual sense, which lies beneath and quickens every part of Holy Scripture, BIBLE]
[TRUMPETS FEAST OF]
(pre-eminent). The descendants of Neziah were among the Nethinim who returned with Zerubbabel,
Ezr 2:54; Ne 7:56
(garrison, pillar), a city of Judah,
only, in the district of the Shefelah or lowland, one of the same group with Keilah and Mareshah. To Eusebius and Jerome it was evidently known. They place it on the road between Eleutheropolis and Hebron, seven or nine miles from the former, and there it still stands under the almost identical name of Beit Nusib or Chirbeh Nasib.
(the barker), a deity of the Avites, introduced by them into Samaria in the time of Shalmaneser.
The rabbins derived the name from a Hebrew root nabach, "to bark," and hence assigned to it the figure of a dog, or a dog-headed man. The Egyptians worshipped the dog. Some indications of this worship have been found in Syria, a colossal figure of a dog having formerly stood at a point between Berytus and Tripolis.
(soft soil) one of the six cities of Judah,
which were in the district of the Midbar (Authorized Version "wilderness").
1. Son of Patroclus, 2 Macc. 8:9, a general who was engaged in the Jewish wars under Antiochus Epiphanes and Demetrius I. 1 Macc. 3:38; 4; 7:26,49. (B.C. 160.)
2. One of the first seven deacons. Acts 6:5.
(conqueror of the people), a Pharisee, a ruler of the Jews and a teacher of Israel,
whose secret visit to our Lord was the occasion of the discourse recorded only by St. John. In Nicodemus a noble candor and a simple love of truth shine out in the midst of hesitation and fear of man. He finally became a follower of Christ, and came with Joseph of Arimathaea to take down and embalm the body of Jesus.
(followers of Nicolas), a sect mentioned in
whose deeds were strongly condemned. They may have been identical with those who held the doctrine of Balaam. They seem to have held that it was lawful to eat things sacrificed to idols, and to commit fornication, in opposition to the decree of the Church rendered in
The teachers of the Church branded them with a name which expressed their true character. The men who did and taught such things were followers of Balaam.
2Pe 2:15; Jude 1:11
They, like the false prophet of Pethor, united brave words with evil deeds. In a time of persecution, when the eating or not eating of things sacrificed to idols was more than ever a crucial test of faithfulness, they persuaded men more than ever that was a thing indifferent.
This was bad enough, but there was a yet worse evil. Mingling themselves in the orgies of idolatrous feasts, they brought the impurities of those feasts into the meetings of the Christian Church. And all this was done, it must be remembered not simply as an indulgence of appetite: but as a part of a system, supported by a "doctrine," accompanied by the boast of a prophetic illumination,
It confirms the view which has been taken of their character to find that stress is laid in the first instance on the "deeds" of the Nicolaitans. To hate those deeds is a sign of life in a Church that otherwise is weak and faithless.
To tolerate them is well nigh to forfeit the glory of having been faithful under persecution.
(victor of the people),
a native of Antioch and a proselyte to the Jewish faith. When the church was still confined to Jerusalem, he became a convert and being a man of honest report full of the Holy Ghost and of wisdom, he was chosen by the whole multitude of the disciples to be one of the first seven deacons, and was ordained by the apostles. There is no reason except the simplicity of name for identifying Nicolas with the sect of Nicolaitans which our Lord denounces, for the traditions on the subject are of no value.
(city of victory) is mentioned in
as the place where St. Paul was intending to pass the coming winter. Nothing is to be found in the epistle itself to determine which Nicopolis is here intended. One Nicopolis was in Thrace, near the borders of Macedonia. The subscription (which, however, is of no authority) fixes on this place, calling it the Macedonian Nicopolis. But there is little doubt that Jerome’s view is correct, and that the Pauline Nicopolis was the celebrated city of Epirus. This city (the "city of victory") was built by Augustus in memory the battle of Actium. It was on a peninsula, to the west of the bay of Actium.
(black) is the additional or distinctive name given to the Simeon who was one of the teachers and prophets in the church at Antioch.
The Hebrew word so translated,
Le 11:10; De 14:15
probably denotes some kind of owl.
(blue, dark), the great river of Egypt. The word Nile nowhere occurs in the Authorized Version but it is spoken of under the names of Sihor [SIHOR] and the "river of Egypt."
We cannot as yet determine the length of the Nile, although recent discoveries have narrowed the question. There is scarcely a doubt that its largest confluent is fed by the great lakes on and south of the equator. It has been traced upward for about 2700 miles, measured by its course, not in a direct line, and its extent is probably over 1000 miles more. (The course of the river has been traced for 3300 miles. For the first 1800 miles (McClintock and Strong say 2300) from its mouth it receives no tributary; but at Kartoom, the capital of Nubia, is the junction of the two great branches, the White Nile and the Blue Nile, so called from the color of the clay which tinges their waters. The Blue Nile rises in the mountains of Abyssinia and is the chief source of the deposit which the Nile brings to Egypt. The White Nile is the larger branch. Late travellers have found its source in Lake Victoria Nyanza, three degrees south of the equator. From this lake to the mouth of the Nile the distance is 2300 miles in a straight line —one eleventh the circumference of the globe. From the First Cataract, at Syene, the river flows smoothly at the rate of two or three miles an hour with a width of half a mile. to Cairo. A little north of Cairo it divides into two branches, one flowing to Rosetta and the other to Damietta, from which place the mouths are named. See Bartlett’s "Egypt and Palestine," 1879. The great peculiarity of the river is its annual overflow, caused by the periodical tropical rains. "With wonderful clock-like regularity the river begins to swell about the end of June, rises 24 feet at Cairo between the 20th and 30th of September and falls as much by the middle of May. Six feet higher than this is devastation; six feet lower is destitution." —Bartlett. So that the Nile increases one hundred days and decreases one hundred days, and the culmination scarcely varies three days from September 25 the autumnal equinox. Thus "Egypt is the gift of the Nile." As to the cause of the years of plenty and of famine in the time of Joseph, Mr. Osburn, in his "Monumental History of Egypt," thinks that the cause of the seven years of plenty was the bursting of the barriers (and gradually wearing them away) of "the great lake of Ethiopia," which once existed on the upper Nile, thus bringing more water and more sediment to lower Egypt for those years. And he shows how this same destruction of this immense sea would cause the absorption of the waters of the Nile over its dry bed for several years after thus causing the famine. There is another instance of a seven-years famine-A.D. 1064-1071.—ED.) The great difference between the Nile of Egypt in the present day and in ancient times is caused by the failure of some of its branches and the ceasing of some of its chief vegetable products; and the chief change in the aspect of the cultivable land, as dependent on the Nile, is the result of the ruin of the fish-pools and their conduits and the consequent decline of the fisheries. The river was famous for its seven branches, and under the Roman dominion eleven were counted, of which, however, there were but seven principal ones. The monuments and the narratives of ancient writers show us in the Nile of Egypt in old times a stream bordered By flags and reeds, the covert of abundant wild fowl, and bearing on its waters the fragrant flowers of the various-colored lotus. Now in Egypt scarcely any reeds or waterplants —the famous papyrus being nearly, if not quite extinct, and the lotus almost unknown—are to he seen, excepting in the marshes near the Mediterranean. Of old the great river must have shown a more fair and busy scene than now. Boats of many kinds were ever passing along it, by the painted walls of temples and the gardens that extended around the light summer pavilions, from the pleasure,valley, with one great square sail in pattern and many oars, to the little papyrus skiff dancing on the water and carrying the seekers of pleasure where they could shoot with arrows or knock down with the throw-stick the wild fowl that abounded among the reeds, or engage in the dangerous chase of the hippopotamus or the crocodile. The Nile is constantly before us in the history of Israel in Egypt.
(limpid, pure), a place mentioned by this name in
only. If it is the same as BETU-NIMRAH, ver. 36, it belonged to the tribe of Gad. It was ten miles north of the Dead Sea and three miles east of the Jordan, in the hill of Nimrim.
(limpid, pure), The waters of, a stream or brook within the country of Moab, which is mentioned in the denunciations of that nation by Isaiah.
We should perhaps look for the site of Nimrim in Moab proper, i.e. on the southeastern shoulder of the Dead Sea.
(rebellion; or the valiant), a son of Cush and grandson of Ham. The events of his life are recorded in
ff., from which we learn (1) that he was a Cushite; (2) that he established an empire in Shinar (the classical Babylonia) the chief towns being Babel, Erech, Accad and Calneh; and (3) that he extended this empire northward along the course of the Tigris over Assyria, where he founded a second group of capitals, Nineveh, Rehoboth, Calah and Resen.
(rescued), the grandfather of Jehu, who is generally called "the son of Nimshi."
1Ki 19:16; 2Ki 9:2, 14,20; 2Ch 22:7
(abode of Ninus), the capital of the ancient kingdom and empire of Assyria. The name appears to be compounded from that of an Assyrian deity "Nin," corresponding, it is conjectured, with the Greek Hercules, and occurring in the names of several Assyrian kings, as in "Ninus," the mythic founder, according to Greek tradition of the city. Nineveh is situated on the eastern bank of the river Tigris, 50 miles from its mouth and 250 miles north of Babylon. It is first mentioned in the Old Testament in connection with the primitive dispersement and migrations of the human race. Asshur, or according to the marginal reading, which is generally preferred, Nimrod is there described,
as extending his kingdom from the land of Shinar or Babylonia, in the south, to Assyria in the north and founding four cities, of which the most famous was Nineveh. Hence Assyria was subsequently known to the Jews as "the land of Nimrod," cf.
and was believed to have been first peopled by a colony from Babylon. The kingdom of Assyria and of the Assyrians is referred to in the Old Testament as connected with the Jews at a very early period, as in
and Psal 83:8 but after the notice of the foundation of Nineveh in Genesis no further mention is made of the city until the time of the book of Jonah, or the eighth century B.C. In this book no mention is made of Assyria or the Assyrians, the king to whom the prophet was sent being termed the "king of Nineveh," and his subjects "the people of Nineveh." Assyria is first called a kingdom in the time of Menahem, about B.C. 770. Nahum (? B.C. 645) directs his prophecies against Nineveh; only once against the king of Assyria. ch.
and Isai 37:37 the city is first distinctly mentioned as the residence of the monarch. Sennacherib was slain there when worshipping in the temple of Nisroch his god. Zephaniah, about B.C. 630, couples the capital and the kingdom together,
and this is the last mention of Nineveh as an existing city. The destruction of Nineveh occurred B.C. 606. The city was then laid waste, its monuments destroyed and its inhabitants scattered or carried away into captivity. It never rose again from its ruins. This total disappearance of Nineveh is fully confirmed by the records of profane history. The political history of Nineveh is that of Assyria, of which a sketch has already been given. [ASSYRIA] Previous to recent excavations and researches, the ruins which occupied the presumed site of Nineveh seemed to consist of mere shapeless heaps or mounds of earth and rubbish. Unlike the vast masses of brick masonry which mark the site of Babylon, they showed externally no signs of artificial construction, except perhaps here and there the traces of a rude wall of sun-dried bricks. Some of these mounds were of enormous dimensions, looking in the distance rather like natural elevations than the work of men’s hands. They differ greatly in form, size and height. Some are mere conical heaps, varying from 50 to 150 feet high; others have a broad flat summit, and very precipitous cliff-like sites furrowed by deep ravines worn by the winter rains. The principal ruins are—
(1) the group immediately opposite Mosul, including the great mounds of Kouyunjik and Nebbi Yunus; (2) that near the junction of the Tigris and Zab comprising the mounds of Nimroud and Athur; (3) Khorsabad, about ten miles to the east of the former river; (4) Shereef Khan, about 5 1/2 miles to the north Kouyunjik; and (5) Selamiyah, three miles to the north of Nimroud. Discoveries. —The first traveller who carefully examined the supposed site of Nineveh was Mr. Rich formerly political agent for the East India Company at Bagdad; but his investigations were almost entirely confined to Kouyunjik and the surrounding mounds of which he made a survey in 1820. In 1843 M. Botta, the French consul at Mosul, fully explored the ruins. M. Botta’s discoveries at Khorsabad were followed by those of Mr. Layard at Nimroud and Kouyunjik, made between the years 1846 and 1850. (Since then very many and important discoveries have been made at Nineveh, more especially those by George Smith, of the British Museum. He has discovered not only the buildings, but the remains of fin ancient library written on stone tablets. These leaves or tablets were from an inch to 1 foot square, made of terra-cotta clay, on which when soft the inscriptions were written; the tablets were then hardened and placed upon the walls of the library rooms, so as to cover the walls. This royal library contained over 10,000 tablets. It was begun by Shalmaneser B.C. 860; his successors added to it, and Sardanapalus (B.C. 673) almost doubled it. Stories or subjects were begun on tablets, and continued on tablets of the same size sometimes to the number of one hundred. Some of the most interesting of these give accounts of the creation and of the deluge and all agree with or confirm the Bible. —ED.) Description of remains. —The Assyrian edifices were so nearly alike in general plan, construction an decoration that one description will suffice for all, They were built upon artificial mounds or platforms, varying in height, but generally from 30 to 50 feet above the level of the surrounding country, and solidly constructed of regular layers of sun-dried bricks, as at Nimroud, or consisting merely of earth and rubbish heaped up, as at Kouyunjik. This platform was probably faced with stone masonry, remains probable which were discovered at Nimroud, and broad flights of steps or inclined ways led up to its summit. Although only the general plan of the ground-floor can now be traced, it is evident that the palaces had several stories built of wood and sun-dried bricks, which, when the building was deserted and allowed to fall to decay, gradually buried the lower chambers with their ruins, and protected the sculptured slabs from the effects of the weather. The depth of soil and rubbish above the alabaster slabs varied from a few inches to about 20 feet. It is to this accumulation of rubbish above them that the bas-reliefs owe their extraordinary preservation. The portions of the edifices still remaining consist of halls, chambers and galleries, opening for the most part into large uncovered courts. The wall above the wainscoting of alabaster was plastered, and painted with figures and ornaments. The sculptured, with the exception of the human headed lions and bulls, were for the most part in low relief, The colossal figures usually represent the king, his attendants and the gods; the smaller sculptures, which either cover the whole face of the slab or are divided into two compartments by bands of inscriptions, represent battles sieges, the chase single combats with wild beasts, religious ceremonies, etc., etc. All refer to public or national events; the hunting-scenes evidently recording the prowess and personal valor of the king as the head of the people— "the mighty hunter before the Lord." The sculptures appear to have been painted, remains of color having been found on most of them. Thus decorated without and within, the Assyrian palaces must have displayed a barbaric magnificence, not, however, devoid of a certain grandeur and beauty which probably no ancient or modern edifice has exceeded. These great edifices, the depositories of the national records, appear to have been at the same time the abode of the king and the temple of the gods. Prophecies relating to Nineveh, and illustrations of the Old Testament. These are exclusively contained in the books of Nahum and Zephaniah. Nahum threatens the entire destruction of the city, so that it shall not rise again from its ruins. The city was to be partly destroyed by fire.
The gateway in the northern wall of the Kouyunjik enclosure had been destroyed by fire as well as the palaces. The population was to be surprised when unprepared: "while they are drunk as drunkards they shall be devoured as stubble fully dry "
Diodorus states that the last and fatal assault was made when they were overcome with wine. The captivity of the inhabitants and their removal to distant provinces are predicted.
The fullest and the most vivid and poetical picture of Nineveh’s ruined and deserted condition is that given by Zephaniah, who probably lived to see its fall.
Site of the city. —much diversity of opinion exists as to the identification of the ruins which may be properly included within the site of ancient Nineveh. According to Sir H. Rawlinson and those who concur in his interpretation of the cuneiform characters, each group of mounds already mentioned represents a separate and distinct city. On the other hand it has been conjectured, with much probability, that these groups of mounds are not ruins of separate cities, but of fortified royal residences, each combining palaces, temples, propylaea, gardens and parks, and having its peculiar name; and that they all formed part of one great city built and added to at different periods, sad consisting of distinct quarters scattered over a very large and frequently very distant one from the other. Thus the city would be, as Layard says, in the form of a parallelogram 18 to 20 miles long by 12 to 14 wide; or, as Diodorus Siculus says, 55 miles in circumference. Writing and language. —The ruins of Nineveh have furnished a vast collection of inscriptions partly carved on marble or stone slabs and partly impressed upon bricks anti upon clay cylinders, or sixsided and eight-sided prisms, barrels and tablets, which, used for the purpose when still moist, were afterward baked in a furnace or kilo. Comp.
The character employed was the arrow-headed or cuneiform —so called from each letter being formed by marks or elements resembling an arrow-head or a wedge. These inscribed bricks are of the greatest value in restoring the royal dynasties. The most important inscription hitherto discovered in connection with biblical history is that upon a pair of colossal human-headed bulls from Kouyunjik, now in the British Museum, containing the records of Sennacherib, and describing, among other events, his wars with Hezekiah. It is accompanied by a series of bas-reliefs believed to represent the siege and capture of Lachish. A list of nineteen or twenty kings can already be compiled, and the annals of the greater number of them will probably be restored to the lost history of one of the most powerful empires of the ancient world. and of one which appears to have exercised perhaps greater influence than any other upon the subsequent condition and development of civilized man. The people of Nineveh spoke a Shemitic dialect, connected with the Hebrew and with the so called Chaldee of the books of Daniel and Ezra. This agrees with the testimony of the Old Testament.
the inhabitants of Nineveh.
(the great eagle) an idol of Nineveh, in whose temple Sennacherib was worshipping when assassinated by his sons, Adrammelech and Shizrezer.
2Ki 19:37; Isa 37:38
This idol is identified with the eagle-headed human figure, which is one of the most prominent on the earliest Assyrian monuments, and is always represented as contending with and conquering the lion or the bull.
Mention of this substance is made in
—"and as vinegar upon nitre"—and in
The article denoted is not that which we now understand by the term nitre i.e. nitrate of Potassa—"saltpetre" —but the nitrum of the Latins and the natron or native carbonate of soda of modern chemistry. Natron was and still is used by the Egyptians for washing linen. The value of soda in this respect is well known. This explains the passage in Jeremiah. Natron is found In great abundance in the well-known soda lakes of Egypt.
(whom Jehovah meets).
1. A Levite, son of Binnui who with Meremoth, Eleazar and Jozabad weighed the vessels of gold and silver belonging to the temple which were brought back from Babylon.
2. The prophetess Noadiah joined Sanballet and Tobiah in their attempt to intimidate Nehemiah.
(rest), the tenth in descent from Adam, in the line of Seth was the son of Lamech and grandson of Methuselah. (B.C. 2948-1998.) We hear nothing of Noah till he is 500 years old when It is said he begat three sons, Shem, Ham and Japheth. In consequence of the grievous and hopeless wickedness of the world at this time, God resolved to destroy it. Of Noah’s life during this age of almost universal apostasy we are told but little. It is merely said that he was a righteous man and perfect in his generations (i.e. among his contemporaries), and that he, like Enoch, walked with God. St. Peter calls him "a preacher of righteousness."
Besides this we are merely told that he had three: sons each of whom had married a wife; that he built the ark in accordance with divine direction; end that he was 600 years old when the flood came.
The ark. —The precise meaning of the Hebrew word (tebah) is uncertain. The word occurs only in Genesis and in
In all probability it is to the old Egyptian that we are to look for its original form. Bunsen, in his vocabulary gives tba, "a chest," tpt, "a boat," and in the Coptic version of
thebi is the rendering of tebah. This "chest" or "boat" was to be made of gopher (i.e. cypress) wood, a kind of timber which both for its lightness and its durability was employed by the Phoenicians for building their vessels. The planks of the ark, after being put together were to be protected by a coating of pitch, or rather bitumen, both inside and outside, to make it water-tight, and perhaps also as a protection against the attacks of marine animals. The ark was to consist of a number of "nests" or small compartments, with a view, no doubt, to the convenient distribution of the different animals and their food. These were to be arranged in three tiers, one above another; "with lower, second and third (stories) shalt thou make it." Means were also to be provided for letting light into the ark. There was to be a door this was to be placed in the side of the ark. Of the shape of the ark nothing is said, but its dimensions are given. It was to be 300 cubits in length, 50 in breadth and 30 in height. Taking 21 inches for the cubit, the ark would be 525 feet in length, 87 feet 6 inches in breadth and 52 feet 6 inches in height. This is very considerably larger than the largest British man-of-war, but not as large as some modern ships. It should be remembered that this huge structure was only intended to float on the water, and was not in the proper sense of the word a ship. It had neither mast, sail nor rudder it was in fact nothing but an enormous floating house, or rather oblong box. The inmates of the ark were Noah and his wife and his three sons with their wives. Noah was directed to take also animals of all kinds into the ark with him, that they might be preserved alive. (The method of speaking of the animals that were taken into the ark "clean" and "unclean," implies that only those which were useful to man were preserved, and that no wild animals were taken into the ark; so that there is no difficulty from the great number of different species of animal life existing in the word. —ED.) The flood. —The ark was finished, and all its living freight was gathered into it as a place of safety. Jehovah shut him in, says the chronicler, speaking of Noah; and then there ensued a solemn pause of seven days before the threatened destruction was let loose. At last the before the threatened destruction was flood came; the waters were upon the earth. A very simple but very powerful and impressive description is given of the appalling catastrophe. The waters of the flood increased for a period of 190 days (40+150, comparing)
and Gene 7:24 and then "God remembered Noah" and made a wind to pass over the earth, so that the waters were assuaged. The ark rested on the seventeenth day of the seventh month on the mountains of Ararat. After this the waters gradually decreased till the first day of the tenth month, when the tops of the mountains were seen but Noah and his family did not disembark till they had been in the ark a year and a month and twenty days. Whether the flood was universal or partial has given rise to much controversy; but there can be no doubt that it was universal, so far as man was concerned: we mean that it extended to all the then known world. The literal truth of the narrative obliges us to believe that the whole human race, except eight persons, perished by the flood. The language of the book of Genesis does not compel us to suppose that the whole surface of the globe was actually covered with water, if the evidence of geology requires us to adopt the hypothesis of a partial deluge. It is natural to suppose it that the writer, when he speaks of "all flesh," "all in whose nostrils was the breath of life" refers only to his own locality. This sort of language is common enough in the Bible when only a small part of the globe is intended. Thus, for instance, it is said that "all countries came into Egypt to Joseph to buy corn and that" a decree went out from Caesar Augustus that all the world should be taxed." The truth of the biblical narrative is confirmed by the numerous traditions of other nations, which have preserved the memory of a great and destructive flood, from which but a small part of mankind escaped. They seem to point back to a common centre whence they were carried by the different families of man as they wandered east and west. The traditions which come nearest to the biblical account are those of the nations of western Asia. Foremost among these is the Chaldean. Other notices of a flood may be found in the Phoenician mythology. There is a medal of Apamea in Phrygia, struck as late as the time of Septimius Severus, in which the Phrygian deluge is commemorated. This medal represents a kind of a square vessel floating in the water. Through an opening in it are seen two persons, a man and a woman. Upon the top of this chest or ark is perched a bird, whilst another flies toward it carrying a branch between its feet. Before the vessel are represented the same pair as having just, quitted it and got upon the dry land. Singularly enough, too, on some specimens of this medal the letters NO or NOE have been found on the vessel, as in the cut on p.
454. (Tayler Lewis deduces the partial extent of the flood from the very face of the Hebrew text." "Earth," where if speaks of "all the earth," often is, and here should be, translated "land," the home of the race, from which there appears to have been little inclination to wander. Even after the flood God had to compel them to disperse. "Under the whole heavens" simply includes the horizon reaching around "all the land" the visible horizon. We still use the words in the same sense and so does the Bible. Nearly all commentators now agree on the partial extent of the deluge. If is probable also that the crimes and violence of the previous age had greatly diminished the population, and that they would have utterly exterminated the race had not God in this way saved out some good seed from their destruction. So that the flood, by appearing to destroy the race, really saved the world from destruction .—ED.) (The scene of the deluge —Hugh Miller, in his "Testimony of the Rocks," argues that there is a remarkable portion of the globe, chiefly on the Asiatic continent, though it extends into Europe, and which is nearly equal to all Europe in extent, whose rivers (some of them the Volga, Oural, Sihon, Kour and the Amoo, of great size) do not fall into the ocean, but, on the contrary are all turned inward, losing themselves in the eastern part of the tract, in the lakes of a rainless district in the western parts into such seas as the Caspian and the Aral. In this region there are extensive districts still under the level of the ocean. Vast plains white with salt and charged with sea-shells, show that the Caspian Sea was at no distant period greatly more extensive than it is now. With the well-known facts, then, before us regarding this depressed Asiatic region, let us suppose that the human family, still amounting to several millions, though greatly reduced by exterminating wars and exhausting vices, were congregated in that tract of country which, extending eastward from the modern Ararat to far beyond the Sea of Aral, includes the original Caucasian centre of the race. Let us suppose that, the hour of judgment having arrived, the land began gradually to sink (as the tract in the Run of Cutch sank in the year 1819) equably for forty days at the rate of about 400 feet per day a rate not twice greater than that at which the tide rises in the Straits of Magellan, and which would have rendered itself apparent as but a persistent inward flowing of the sea. The depression, which, by extending to the Euxine Sea and the Persian Gulf on the one hand and the Gulf of Finland on the other, would open up by three separate channels the "fountains of the great deep," and which included an area of 2000 miles each way, would, at the end of the fortieth day, be sunk in its centre to the depth of 16,000 feet, —sufficient to bury the loftiest mountains of the district; and yet, having a gradient of declination of but sixteen feet per mile, the contour of its hills and plains would remain apparently what they had been before, and the doomed inhabitants would, but the water rising along the mountain sides, and one refuge after another swept away. -ED.) After the Flood. —Noah’s great act after he left the ark was to build an altar and to offer sacrifices. This is the first altar of which we read in Scripture, and the first burnt sacrifice. Then follows the blessing of God upon Noah and his sons. Noah is clearly the head of a new human family, the representative of the whole race. It is as such that God makes his covenant with him; and hence selects a natural phenomenon as the sign of that covenant. The bow in the cloud, seen by every nation under heaven, is an unfailing witness to the truth of God. Noah now for the rest of his life betook himself to agricultural pursuits. It is particularly noticed that he planted a vineyard. Whether in ignorance of its properties or otherwise we are not informed, but he drank of the juice of the grape till he became intoxicated and shamefully exposed himself in his own tent. One of sons, Ham, mocked openly at his father’s disgrace. The others, with dutiful care and reverence, endeavored to hide it. When he recovered from the effects of his intoxication, he declared that a curse should rest upon the sons of Ham. With the curse on his youngest son was joined a blessing on the other two. After this prophetic blessing we hear no more of the patriarch but the sum of his years, 950.
(motion), one of the five daughters of Zelophehad.
Nu 26:33; 27:1; 36:11; Jos 17:3
(temple of Amon)
Jer 46:25; Eze 30:14,16
a city of Egypt, better known under the name of Thebes or Diospolis Magna, the ancient and splendid metropolis of upper Egypt The second part of the first form as the name of Amen, the chief divinity of Thebes, mentioned or alluded to in connection with this place in Jeremiah. There is a difficulty as to the meaning of No. It seems most reasonable to suppose that No is a Shemitic name and that Amen is added in Nahum (l.c.) to distinguish Thebes from some other place bearing the same name or on account of the connection of Amen with that city. The description of No-amon as "situated among the rivers, the waters round about it" (Nah. l.c.), remarkably characterizes Thebes. (It lay on both sides of the Nile, and was celebrated for its hundred gates, for its temples, obelisks, statues. etc. It was emphatically the city of temples, in the ruins of which many monuments of ancient Egypt are preserved, The plan of the city was a parallelogram, two miles from north to south and four from east to west, but none suppose that in its glory if really extended 33 miles along both aides of the Nile. Thebes was destroyed by Ptolemy, B.C. 81, and since then its population has dwelt in villages only. —ED.)
1Sa 22:19; Ne 11:32
a sacerdotal city in the tribe of Benjamin and situated on some eminence near Jerusalem. It was one of the places where the ark of Jehovah was kept for a time during the days of its wanderings.
etc. But the event for which Nob was most noted in the Scripture annals was a frightful massacre which occurred there in the reign of Saul.
(barking), an Israelite warrior,
who during the conquest of the territory on the east of Jordan possessed himself of the town of Kenath and the villages or hamlets dependent upon it, and gave them his own name. (B.C.1450.) For a certain period after the establishment of the Israelite rule the new name remained,
but it is not again heard of, and the original appellation, as is usual in such cases, appears to have recovered its hold, has since retained; for in the slightly-modified form of Kunawat it is the name of the place to the present day.
(flight), the land to which Cain fled after the murder of Abel. [CAIN]
(nobility), the name of an Arab tribe mentioned only in
in the account of the war of the Reubenites against the Hagarites. vs. 9-22. It is probable that Nodab, their ancestor, was the son of Ishmael, being mentioned with two of his other sons in the passage above cited, and was therefore a grandson of Abraham.
(brightness), one of the thirteen sons of David who were born to him in Jerusalem,
1Ch 3:7; 14:6
(rest), the fourth son of Benjamin.
(fish). Nun, the father of Joshua.
(blast), a place mentioned only in
in the remarkable song apparently composed by the Amorites after their conquest of Heshbon from the Moabites, and therefore of an earlier date than the Israelite invasion. It is named with Dibon and Medeba, and was possibly in the neighborhood of Heshbon. A name very similar to Nophah is Nobah, which is twice mentioned. Ewald decides that Nophah is identical with the latter of these.
Ge 24:22; Ex 35:22
Isa 3:21, Eze 16:12
"jewel on the forehead," a ring of metal, sometimes of gold or silver, passed usually through the right nostril, and worn by way of ornament by women in the East. Upon it are strung beads, coral or jewels. In Egypt it is now almost confined to the lower classes.
Like most Oriental nations, it is probable that the Hebrews in their written calculations made use of the letters of the alphabet. That they did so in post-Babylonian times we have conclusive evidence in the Maccabaean coins; and it is highly probable that this was the ease also in earlier times. But though, on the one hand, it is certain that in all existing MSS of the Hebrew text of the Old Testament the numerical expressions are written at length, yet, on the other, the variations in the several versions between themselves and from the Hebrew text, added to the evident inconsistencies in numerical statement between certain passages of that text itself seems to prove that some shorter mode of writing was originally in vogue, liable to be misunderstood, and in fact misunderstood by copyists and translators. These variations appear to have proceeded from the alphabetic method of writing numbers. There can be little doubt, however, that some at least of the numbers mentioned in Scripture are intended to be representative rather than determinative. Certain numbers, as 7,10,40,100, were regarded as giving the idea of completeness. Without entering into St. Augustine’s theory of this usage, we may remark that the notion of representative numbers in certain cases is one extremely common among eastern nations, who have a prejudice against counting their possessions accurately; that it enters largely into many ancient systems of chronology, and that it is found in the philosophical and metaphysical speculations not only of the Pythagorean and other ancient schools of philosophy, both Greek and Roman, but also in those of the later Jewish writers, of the Gnostics, and also of such Christian writers se St. Augustine himself. We proceed to give some instances of numbers used, (a) representatively, and thus probably by design indefinitely, or, (b) definitely, but, as we may say, preferentially, i.e. because some meaning (which we do not in all cases understand) was attached to them.
1. Seven as denoting either plurality or completeness, perhaps because seven days completed the week is so frequent as to make a selection only of instances necessary, e.g. seven fold
seven times, i.e. completely,
Le 26:24; Ps 12:6
seven (i.e. many) ways,
2. Ten as a preferential number is exemplified in the Ten Commandments and the law of tithe.
3. Seventy, as compounded of 7 X 10, appears frequently e.g. seventy fold.
Ge 4:24; Mt 18:22
Its definite use appears in the offerings of 70 shekels,
ff,; the 70 elders, ch.
70 years of captivity.
4. Five appears in the table of punishments, of legal requirements,
Ex 22:1; Le 5:16; 22:14; 27:15; Nu 5:7; 18:16
and in the five empires of Daniel.
5. Four is used in reference to the 4 winds,
and the so-called 4 corners of the earth; the creatures, each with 4 wings and 4 faces, of Ezekiel,
ff.; 4 rivers of Paradise
... and Reve 4:6 the 4 equal-sided temple-chamber.
6. Three was regarded, by both the Jews and other nations as a specially complete and mystic number.
7. Twelve (3X4) appears in 12 tribes 12 stones in the high priest’s breastplate, 12 apostles, 12 foundation-stones, and 12 gates.
8. Lastly, the mystic number 666.
the fourth book of the law or Pentateuch. It takes its name in the LXX. and Vulgate (whence our "Numbers") from the double numbering or census of the people, the first of which is given in chs. 1-4, and the second in ch. 28. Contents. —The book may be said to contain generally the history of the Israelites from the time of their leaving Sinai, in the second year after the exodus till their arrival at the borders of the Promised land in the fortieth year of their journeyings It consists of the following principal divisions: 1, The Preparations for the departure from Sinai.
Nu 1:1 ... 10:10
2. The journey from Sinai to the borders of Canaan. ch.
Nu 10:11 ... 14:45
3. A brief notice of laws and events which transpired during the thirty-seven years wandering in the wilderness. ch.
Nu 15:1 ... 19:22
4. The history of the last year, from the second arrival of the Israelites in Kadesh till they reached "the plains of Moab by Jordan near Jericho." ch,
Nu 20:1 ... 36:13
Integrity. —This, like the other books of the Pentateuch, is supposed by many critics to consist of a compilation from two or three or more earlier documents; but the grounds on which this distinction of documents rests are in every respect most unsatisfactory, and it may, in common with the preceding books and Deuteronomy, be regarded as the work of Moses. The book of Numbers is rich in fragments of ancient poetry, some of them of great beauty and all throwing an interesting light on the character of the times in which they were composed. Such, for instance, is the blessing of the high priest. ch.
Such too are chants which were the signal for the ark to move when the people journeyed, and for it to rest when they were about to encamp. In ch. 21 we have a passage cited from a book called the "Book of the Wars of Jehovah." This was probably a collection of ballads and songs composed on different occasions by the watch-fires of the camp, and for the most part, though not perhaps exclusively, in commemoration of the victories of the Israelites over their enemies.
(fish, or posterity), the father of the Jewish captain Joshua.
etc. His genealogical descent from Ephraim is recorded in
... (B.C. before 1530.)
In ancient times the position of the nurse, wherever one was maintained, was one of much honor sad importance. See
Ge 24:59; 36;8; 2Sa 4:4; 2Ki 11:2
The same term is applied to a foster-father or mother, e.g.
Nu 11:12; Ru 4:16; Isa 49:23
are mentioned among the good things of the things which the sons of Israel were to take as a present to Joseph in Egypt.
There can scarcely be a doubt that the Hebrew word, here denotes the fruit of the pistachio tree (Pistacia vera), for Syria and Palestine have been long famous. In
a different Hebrew word is translated "nuts." In all probability it here refers to the walnut tree. According to Josephus the walnut tree was formerly common and grew most luxuriantly around the Lake of Gennesareth.
(bridegroom), a wealthy and zealous Christian in Laodicea.