Scriptures Bible Dictionary
Bible Dictionary


(Gen. 48: 7); elsewhere Padan-aram. Probably plain of Aram. Also called Mesopotamia, the country between the sources of the Tigris and Euphrates; the home of Rebekah (Gen. 25: 20) and Rachel (Gen. 28: 2, 5-7; see also Gen. 31: 18; Gen. 33: 18; Gen. 35: 9, 26; Gen. 46: 15 ).

Bible Dictionary


Joel 3: 4. The name originally denoted the district bordering the Mediterranean, inhabited by Philistines. The Greeks and Romans used the name to denote the whole of southern Syria (just as in most modern atlases), a district nearly 180 miles long, and about 85 miles in average breadth. Running from north to south is the deep Jordan valley, which at its lowest part near the Dead Sea, is 1290 feet below the level of the Mediterranean. This valley, which extends southward as far as the Gulf of Aqabah, is called the Arabah. On either side of the valley is hill country, the western range being broken by the plain of Esdraelon. Proceeding further west we reach the Shephelah or Low Hills, and then the Maritime Plain, extending the whole length of the seacoast, and including the plains of Philistia and Sharon. Down in the south was the Negeb, called in the KJV the “south country.” On the east of Jordan the highest summit is Mount Hermon (9400 feet). Thence going south the ground falls to an average height of about 2000 feet, this tableland being crossed by numerous valleys, and gradually sinking southward and eastward until the desert is reached. When Abraham first settled in Palestine the country was occupied by various Semitic tribes. Some of these remained on the borders of Palestine and for a long time disputed with Israel the possession of the land. The Israelite dominion was largest in the time of David. It shrank in consequence of repeated defeats by the Syrians, Assyrians, and Babylonians. The land was never fully occupied by the Jews after their return from captivity. In the time of our Lord, Judaea was mainly Jewish, but in the rest of Palestine there was a mixture of Jews, Syrians, and Greeks. The coast towns were mainly gentile. Samaria was occupied by people of mixed race who accepted the law of Moses, but who were regarded by Jews with a special hatred. In Galilee the small towns and villages were mainly Jewish, while in the large towns as well as in the district east of Jordan known as Decapolis the people were for the most part gentile.

Bible Dictionary


(1) Most teachers, especially Oriental teachers, have used some form of parable in their instruction, but none so exclusively as Jesus at one period of his ministry. During part of the Galilean ministry the record states that “without a parable spake he not unto them” (Mark 4: 34). From our Lord’s words (Matt. 13: 13-15; Mark 4: 12; Luke 8: 10 ) we learn the reason for this method. It was to veil the meaning. The parable conveys to the hearer religious truth exactly in proportion to his faith and intelligence; to the dull and uninspired it is a mere story, “seeing they see not,” while to the instructed and spiritual it reveals the mysteries or secrets of the kingdom of heaven. Thus it is that the parable exhibits the condition of all true knowledge. Only he who seeks finds.

(2) The word parable is Greek in origin, and means a setting side by side, a comparison. In parables divine truth is presented by comparison with material things. The Hebrew word, mashal, which parable is used to translate, has a wider significance, and is applied to the balanced metrical from in which teaching is conveyed int he poetical books of the Old Testament. See Matt. 13: 35.

(3) Interpretation of parables. It is important to distinguish between the interpretation of a parable and the application of a parable. The only true interpretation is the meaning the parable conveyed, or was meant to convey, when first spoken. The application of a parable may vary in every age and circumstance. But if the original meaning is to be grasped, it is important to consider its context and setting. The thought to which it is linked, the connection in which it is placed, the persons to whom it is addressed, all give the clue to the right interpretation. Other rules of interpretation are: (a) Do not force a meaning on subordinate incidents. (b) Do not regard as parallel parables that are connected by superficial likeness of imagery. (c) Bear in mind that the same illustration does not always have the same significance - leaven, e.g., signifies a principle of good as well as a principle of evil. (d) Remember that the comparison in a parable is not complete, does not touch at every point. Thus, the characters of the unjust judge or the unjust steward or the nobleman who went into a far country - possibly referring to the infamous Archelaus - do not concern the interpretation of the parable. The parable draws a picture of life as it is, not as it ought to be, and compares certain points in this picture with heavenly doctrine. (e) Observe the proper proportions of a parable, and do not make the episode more prominent than the main line of teaching.

(4) Classification of parables. The greatest importance should be attached to the grouping of the parables by the writers themselves. In Matthew three main lines of teaching are illustrated by parables: (a) The Church of the future- its planting and growth, internal and external, the enthusiasm for it, the mingling within it of good and evil, the final judgment of it (ch. 13). (b) The Jewish Church and nation, its history, and the causes of its fall (Matt. 21: 18-19, 23 - 22: 14). (c) The ministry of the Church in the parables given on the Mount of Olives, addressed especially to the apostles, on work and watchfulness (Matt. 25: 1-30). The parable of the laborers in the vineyard (Matt. 19: 30- 20: 16), in answer to a question of the apostles, may be classed under (a).

Mark follows the lines of Matthew in (a)Mark 4: 1-34, and (b)Mark 12: 1-12; but in each division fewer parables are reported, and in (b) one only. In (a), however, occurs the one parable peculiar to this Gospel.

Luke also omits the parables given on the Mount of Olives (c), but compare Luke 12: 35-48, Luke 19: 11-28, and illustrates (a) and (b) less copiously than Matthew. His independent reports, however, are numerous. These may be classified generally as illustrating

(1) Prayer and earnestness in religious life (Luke 11: 5-8; Luke 16: 1-13; Luke 18: 1-8 ).

(2) Forgiveness and the love of God (Luke 7: 41-43; Luke 15 ).

(3) Reversal of human judgment, as to just and unjust (Luke 10: 25-27; Luke 12: 16-21; Luke 18: 9-14 ); rich and poor (Luke 16: 19-31).

John has no true parables, but presents two allegories: the good shepherd (Luke 10: 1-16), and the vine and the branches (Luke 15: 1-7).

Parables peculiar to each Gospel:


1. The tares.

2. The hidden treasure.

3. The pearl of great price.

4. The draw-net.

5. The unmerciful servant.

6. The laborers in the vineyard.

7. The two sons.

8. Marriage of the king’s son.

9. The ten virgins.

10. The talents.


The seed growing secretly.


1. The two debtors.

2. The good Samaritan.

3. The importuned friend.

4. The rich fool.

5. The barren fig tree.

6. The lost piece of silver.

7. The prodigal son.

8. The unjust steward.

9. Dives and Lazarus.

10. The unjust judge.

11. The Pharisee and the Publican.

12. The ten pieces of money.

The parable of the ten pieces of money (minae) (Luke 19: 11-27) is an interesting example of historical groundwork in a parable. (The reference is possibly to the journey of Archelaus to Rome.) But probably in other parables similar historical allusions, now lost, must have added vividness to the narrative. Of these the royal marriage feast, the great supper, and the good Samaritan are possible examples.

Bible Dictionary


The word does not occur in the KJV. It is an English form of the Greek parakletos, a name applied by the Lord (John 14: 16, 26; John 15: 26; John 16: 7 ) to the Holy Spirit, and which may be translated Comforter, Advocate, or Helper. The same name is applied by John (1 Jn 2: 1) to the Lord himself. Advocate is probably the English word that most nearly represents the meaning of the Greek.

Bible Dictionary


A Persian word meaning a garden. It is not found in the O.T. In the N.T. it occurs in Luke 23: 43, 2 Cor. 12: 4, and Rev. 2: 7. See also 2 Ne. 9: 13; Alma 40: 12, 14; 4 Ne. 1: 14; Moro. 10: 34; D&C 77: 2, 5; cf. A of F 10. Paradise is that part of the spirit world in which the righteous spirits who have departed from this life await the resurrection of the body. It is a condition of happiness and peace. However, the scriptures are not always consistent in the use of the word, especially in the Bible. For example, when Jesus purportedly said to the thief on the cross, “To day shalt thou be with me in Paradise” (Luke 23: 43), the Bible rendering is incorrect. The statement would more accurately read, “Today shalt thou be with me in the world of spirits” since the thief was not ready for paradise (see HC 5: 424-25). Possibly 2 Cor. 12: 4 should also not use paradise in the sense of meaning the spirit world, as much as meaning the celestial kingdom. The “paradisiacal glory” of A of F 10 refers to the glorified millennial state of the earth rather than the spirit world.

Bible Dictionary

Paran, Wilderness of

The desert between Judaea and Sinai, forming the central part of the Sinaitic peninsula (Gen. 21: 21; Num. 10: 12; Num. 12: 16; Num. 13: 3, 26; Deut. 1: 1; Deut. 33: 2; 1 Sam. 25: 1; 1 Kgs. 11: 18; Hab. 3: 3 ); called El-paran (Gen. 14: 6).

Bible Dictionary


A Greek word that is the technical term in the N.T. for the second coming of the Lord in glory to judge the world (see Matt. 24: 3, 27, 39; 1 Cor. 15: 23; 1 Thes. 2: 19; 1 Thes. 3: 13; 1 Thes. 4: 15; 1 Thes. 5: 23; 2 Thes. 2: 1,8; 2 Pet. 1: 16; 3: 4).

Bible Dictionary


In Acts 2: 9, this word denotes Jews settled in Parthia, the district south of the Caspian Sea, and extending from India to the Tigris.

Bible Dictionary


See Feasts.

Bible Dictionary

Pastoral Epistles

The name given to the epistles to Timothy and Titus, because they deal with the pastoral office and the duties of the shepherds of ministers of the Church.

Bible Dictionary


= Upper Egypt (Isa. 11: 11; Jer. 44: 1, 15; Ezek. 29: 14; Ezek. 30: 14 ).

Bible Dictionary


One of the Sporades, the southeastern group of the islands of the Aegean Sea, being the island to which John was banished. There, according to tradition, he worked in the “mines,” i.e., marble quarries, and saw the vision related in the Apocalypse (Rev. 1: 9).

Bible Dictionary

Patriarch, Patriarchs

A patriarch is called an evangelist in D&C 107: 39 ff. As such patriarch is an ordained office in the Melchizedek Priesthood. The fathers from Adam to Jacob were all patriarchs of this kind. The word as used in the Bible seems to denote also a title of honor to early leaders of the Israelites, such as David (Acts 2: 29) and the 12 sons of Jacob (Acts 7: 8-9). The word is of Greek derivation and means father-ruler; the Hebrew word it translates is simply father.

Bible Dictionary


The life and work of the great apostle Paul is recorded at considerable length in the Acts and the epistles. It is only possible to indicate here a few of the chief facts. He was known in early life as Saul; his Latin name Paul is first mentioned at the beginning of his gentile ministry (Acts 13: 9).

He belonged to Tarsus, in Cilicia (Acts 9: 11); was a Pharisee and a pupil of Gamaliel (Acts 22: 3); was active in the persecution of Christians (Acts 8: 3; Acts. 26: 10; Gal. 1: 13; Philip. 3: 6 ); and took part in the martyrdom of Stephen (Acts 7: 58; Acts 8: 10 ).

He started for Damascus for the purpose of further persecution (Acts 9: 1) and on the road saw a vision of the Lord Jesus, which changed the whole current of his life (Acts 9: 4-19; Acts 22: 7; Acts 26: 14; Gal. 1: 15-16 ). After his baptism by Ananias (Acts 9: 18), he retired into Arabia (Gal. 1: 17), and then returned to Damascus, where he preached (Acts 9: 19-25; 2 Cor. 11: 32; Gal. 1: 17-18 ). Being compelled to flee, about three years after his conversion he went to Jerusalem, where he stayed 15 days, Barnabas introducing him to Peter and James (Acts 9: 26-30; Gal. 1: 18-19 ). Being in danger, he retired to Tarsus (Acts 9: 29-30) and there remained six or seven years, preaching in Syria and Cilicia (Gal. 1: 21-24). He was then brought by Barnabas to Antioch (Acts 11: 26), and after one year paid a visit to Jerusalem (Acts 11: 29-30). After two more years’ work in Antioch, he started with Barnabas and Mark on his first missionary journey (Acts 13: 1- 14: 26). Then came another visit to Jerusalem with Barnabas to attend a conference with the other apostles (Acts 15: 1-33; Gal. 2: 1-10 ), after which they returned to Antioch (Acts 15: 35). He then started on his second missionary journey (Acts 15: 36- 18: 22), which lasted about three years, and ended with a visit to Jerusalem. After a short stay in Antioch, Paul began his third journey, which occupied about 3 1/2 years (Acts 18: 23- 21: 15). On his return to Jerusalem he was arrested and sent to Caesarea (Acts 21: 17- 23: 35), where he remained a prisoner for two years (Acts 24: 1- 26: 32), and was then sent for trial to Rome, suffering shipwreck on the way (Acts 27: 1- 28: 10). He remained in Rome two years (Acts 28: 30) and was then released. He then appears to have visited Asia, Macedonia, Crete, and perhaps Spain. At the end of about four years he was again taken a prisoner to Rome, and suffered martyrdom, probably in the spring of A.D. 65.

For an account of his teaching, see Pauline Epistles.

Bible Dictionary

Pauline Epistles

Paul's 14 epistles found in our present N.T. were written to members of the Church who already had some knowledge of the gospel. They are not evangelistic; rather, they are regulatory in nature. The arrangement is neither chronological, geographical, nor alphabetical, but by length, in descending order from the longest (Romans) to the shortest (Philemon). This is the case except with the epistle to the Hebrews, which was placed last because some have questioned whether or not it was written by Paul. The dating and chronological grouping of the epistles as presented below is approximate, but seems consistent with the known facts.

An advantage in studying the epistles in chronological order is that the reader sees the differences in the types of problems the Church encountered as the years passed and circumstances changed. Early membership was mostly Jewish, and problems included questions about the law of Moses. Later, when the gentile membership had increased, problems involved items of Greek philosophy. Early persecution was from the Jews and the Judaizers. Later persecution came from the Roman government. These things are visible in the epistles not by sharp distinction, but by the gradual shift of emphasis.

Paul's epistles may be divided into four groups


1 and 2 Thessalonians

Epistles to the Thessalonians were written from Corinth during Paul's first visit to Europe. His work in Thessalonica is described in Acts 17. It was his wish to return, but he was unable to do so (1 Thes. 2: 18); he therefore sent Timothy to cheer the converts and bring him word how they fared. The first epistle is the outcome of his thankfulness on Timothy's return.

Analysis of 1 Thessalonians

1. Personal

a. Salutation and thanksgiving (1 Thes. 1: 1-10).

b. Reminder of his work among them, and fresh thanksgiving (1 Thes. 2: 1-16).

c. His anxiety on their behalf and his reason for sending Timothy (1 Thes. 2: 17- 3: 10).

d. A prayer for them (1 Thes. 3: 11-13).

2. Instruction

a. Exhortation about spiritual growth, chastity, love, and diligence (1 Thes. 4: 1-12).

b. Doctrine of the second advent, for the consolation of the bereaved (1 Thes. 4: 13-18), and for the warning and edification of survivors (1 Thes. 5: 1-11).

c. Exhortation to laity, clergy, and the whole church (1 Thes. 5: 12-28).

In the short interval between the two epistles the Church suffered from persecution (2 Thes. 1: 4); the prospect of an immediate return of the Lord fostered an unhealthy excitement (2 Thes. 2: 2), and seemed to countenance improvident idleness (2 Thes. 3: 6), while Paul's own teaching had been misunderstood (2 Thes. 3: 17, cf. 2 Thes. 2: 2 ).

Analysis of 2 Thessalonians

1. Salutation and thanksgiving (2 Thes. 1: 1-10).

2. A prayer (2 Thes. 1: 11-12).

3. Teaching about the second advent; the Lord not to come immediately (2 Thes. 2: 1-12).

4. Thanksgiving, an appeal to stand firm, and a prayer (2 Thes. 2: 13-17).

5. Prayer for himself and his converts (2 Thes. 3: 1-5).

6. Duty of subordination and of work (2 Thes. 3: 6-16).

7. Conclusion (2 Thes. 3: 17-18).


1 and 2 Corinthians, Galatians, Romans.

These epistles were written between A.D. 55 and 56; 1 Cor. toward the end of Paul's three years' stay at Ephesus, 2 Cor. and perhaps Gal. during his journey through Macedonia; and Rom. from Corinth.

Epistles to the Corinthians. Corinth was the meeting point of many nationalities because the main current of the trade between Asia and western Europe passed through its harbors. Paul's first visit lasted nearly two years; his converts were mainly Greeks, men gifted by race with a keen sense of the joys of physical existence, with a passion for freedom and a genius for rhetoric and logic, but reared in the midst of the grossest moral corruption, undisciplined and self-conceited. Some time before 1 Cor. 2 was written he paid them a second visit (2 Cor. 12: 14; 2 Cor. 13: 1 ) to check some rising disorder (2 Cor. 2: 1; 2 Cor. 13: 2 ), and wrote them a letter, now lost (1 Cor. 5: 9). They had also been visited by Apollos (Acts 18: 27), perhaps by Peter (1 Cor. 1: 12), and by some Jewish Christians who brought with them letters of commendation from Jerusalem (1 Cor. 1: 12; 2 Cor. 3: 1; 2 Cor. 5: 16; 2 Cor. 11: 23 ).

Analysis of 1 Corinthians

1. Salutation and Thanksgiving (1 Cor. 1: 1-9).

2. Rebuke of the Corinthian Church for lack of unity (1 Cor. 1: 10- 6: 20).

a. The spirit of partisanship and insubordination (1 Cor. 1: 10- 4: 21).

b. The case of impurity (1 Cor. 5: 1-13; 1 Cor. 6: 9-20 ).

c. The lawsuits (1 Cor. 6: 1-9).

3. Paul's reply to inquiries made by them as to

a. Marriage (1 Cor. 7: 1-40).

b. Meat offered to idols (1 Cor. 8: 1- 11: 1).

c. The order of worship, with special reference to the Lord's Supper and the use of spiritual gifts (1 Cor. 11: 2- 14: 40). This section contains 1 Cor. 12: 31 - 13: 13) a magnificent description of love, the greatest in the trio of things that abide forever.

4. Doctrine of the resurrection -

a. Of Christ (1 Cor. 15: 1-19).

b. Of the dead (1 Cor. 15: 20-34).

c. Degrees of glory (1 Cor. 15: 35-58).

5. Directions about a collection for the Christian poor at Jerusalem; information about Paul's, Timothy's, and Apollos's plans; final exhortations and salutation (1 Cor. 16: 1-24).

Soon after writing the first epistle Paul was driven from Ephesus by a riot (Acts 19). In Macedonia he met Titus (2 Cor. 7: 6), who brought him news from Corinth that his letter had been well received and had produced the desired effect; the Church had cleared itself of all complicity in a sexual offense and had excommunicated the offender (2 Cor. 2: 5-11). But Paul found that a personal coolness had sprung up between himself and his converts (2 Cor. 7: 2; 2 Cor. 12: 15 ), which unscrupulous opponents were turning to their own account.

Analysis of 2 Corinthians

1. Salutation and thanksgiving (2 Cor. 1: 1-11).

2. Personal, arising out of the report of Titus.

a. His own movements and feelings toward the Corinthian Church (2 Cor. 1: 12- 2: 17).

b. The characteristics of the Christian ministry as exemplified by true apostles (2 Cor. 3: 1- 6: 10).

c. An account of the impression produced on his own mind by the report of Titus (2 Cor. 6: 11- 7: 16).

3. Welfare collection for the churches of Judaea (2 Cor. 8: 1- 9;15).

4. Assertion of his own position as an apostle (2 Cor. 10: 1- 12: 10).

5. Conclusion (2 Cor. 12: 11- 13: 14).

Epistle to the Galatians. There is some uncertainty as to what churches were addressed in this epistle. They were either in northern Galatia, the district of which Ancyra was capital, or in the district on the borders of Phrygia and Galatia that was visited by Paul on his first missionary journey. In either case the Galatian churches were certainly visited by Paul on his second (Acts 16: 6) and third (Acts 18: 23) journeys. (See Galatia.) The epistle was written by him (Probably while traveling through Macedonia) at the news of a wholesale defection from the truth of the gospel in favor of a return to the bondage of the Jewish law. In the epistle he vindicates his own position as an apostle, enunciates the doctrine of righteousness by faith, and affirms the value of spiritual religion as opposed to a religion of externals.

Analysis of Galatians.

1. Salutation and expression of regret at the news he had received (Gal. 1: 1-10).

2. Personal: a vindication of his own position as an apostle; his relationship with other apostles (Gal. 1: 11- 2: 21).

3. Theological: showing the superiority of the doctrine of faith to the doctrine of merit by works (Gal. 3: 1- 4: 31).

a. Appeal to their own experience of the Christian life (Gal. 3: 1-6).

b. The faith of Abraham; faith in Jesus Christ enables believers to become Abraham's seed (Gal. 3: 1-29).

c. The purpose of the law and its preparatory function (Gal. 4: 1-11).

d. A personal appeal (Gal. 4: 12-20).

e. Allegory of Isaac and Ishmael (Gal. 4: 21-31).

4. Practical results of the doctrine of faith (Gal. 5: 1- 6: 10).

a. A return of Judaism a denial of Christian liberty (Gal. 5: 1-12).

b. Liberty did not mean freedom from moral restraint (Gal. 5: 13-26).

c. Duty of sympathy and liberality (Gal. 6: 1-10).

5. Autograph postscript (Gal. 6: 11-18).

Epistle to the Romans, written from Corinth toward the end of the stay recorded in Acts 20: 3. Paul was then contemplating a visit to Jerusalem, which was certain to be dangerous (Rom. 15: 31). If he escaped with his life he hoped afterwards to visit Rome. The letter was meant in part to prepare the Church there to receive him when he came. It may also be regarded as containing a statement of those doctrines which had been in dispute with the Judaizing Christians, and which Paul now regarded as finally established.

Analysis of Romans

1. Salutation and thanksgiving (Rom. 1: 1-15).

2. Doctrinal (Rom. 1: 16- 11: 36).

a. His main thesis, the doctrine of righteousness by faith (Rom. 1: 16-17).

b. Such a doctrine met a crying need of the whole world, for God's wrath against sin was only too evident, and this included both Jew and gentile (Rom. 1: 18- 2: 29).

c. The Jew's position of privilege (Rom. 3: 1-8; see also ch. 9).

d. Jew and gentile shown from scripture to be alike under sin (Rom. 3: 9-20).

e. Righteousness by faith now made possible and all boasting excluded (Rom. 3: 21-31).

f. Illustration of the doctrine from the case of Abraham (Rom. 4: 1-25).

g. Joy through the Lord Jesus (Rom. 5: 1-11).

h. The first and second Adam (Rom. 5: 12-19).

i. The moral consequences of our deliverance, namely, union with Christ, release from sin, and life in the Spirit (Rom. 5: 20- 8: 39).

j. Israel's rejection, the reason for it (Rom. 9: 1- 10: 21), yet not final (Rom. 11: 1-36).

3. Practical exhortations.

a. The duty of holiness of life and the law of love (Rom. 12: 1- 13: 14).

b. The treatment of weaker brethren (Rom. 14: 1- 15: 13).

4. Personal.

a. His reasons for writing (Rom. 15: 14-33).

b. Greetings (Rom. 6: 1-23).

c. Benediction and doxology (Rom. 16: 24- 27).

Characteristics of the Second Group. These four epistles illustrate a new stage in the apostolic teaching. A great controversy had arisen as to the necessity of obedience to the Mosaic law. Although the matter had been settled theologically at the Jerusalem conference in about A.D. 50 (Acts 15; Gal. 2: 1-10 ), it took a long time to settle the matter culturally in the lives of many Church members. Many still looked upon the church as a subdivision or an outgrowth of Judaism, and they saw no need to discontinue the ordinances of the law of Moses when they became members of the Christian Church. To them Christianity was something new, while the law was undoubtedly of divine appointment, and approved by the example of generations of faithful Israelites. In the controversy Paul took a leading part, and in these four epistles he points men to the cross of Christ as the only source of eternal life (cf. Mosiah 12: 27 - 16: 15). The epistles to the Romans and Galatians were the inspired writings most appealed to by the Reformation of the 16th century because they emphasize the spirit over legal formalism.


Philippians, Colossians, Ephesians, Philemon, Hebrews

These are separated from the previous group by an interval of four or five years, spent by Paul almost entirely in captivity. They were all written from Rome.

Epistle to the Philippians. The church at Philippi was the earliest founded by Paul in Europe (Acts 16: 11-40). His first visit ended abruptly, but he was not forgotten, and his converts sent him supplies not only while he remained in the neighborhood, but also after he had moved on to Corinth (Philip. 4: 15-16). He passed through Philippi six years later (Acts 20: 2) on his way from Ephesus to Corinth, and again on his return (Acts 20: 6) from Corinth to Jerusalem. When the news of his removal to Rome reached the Philippians, they sent one of their number, Epaphroditus (Acts 2: 25), to minister to him in their name. The strain of work in the capital proved too severe, and Epaphroditus had to be invalided home (Acts 2: 26-30), taking with him the epistle to the Philippians. Its main purpose is to express Paul's gratitude and affection, and to cheer them under the disappointment of his protracted imprisonment.

Analysis of Philippians

1. Salutation, thanksgiving, and prayer on their behalf (Philip. 1: 1-11).

2. Personal: dealing with the progress of the missionary work (Philip. 1: 12-26).

3. Exhortation to unity, humility, and perseverance (Philip. 2: 1-18).

4. Paul's own plans, and those of Timothy and Epaphroditus (Philip. 2: 19-30).

5. Warning against false teachers (Philip. 3: 1- 4: 9).

6. Thanks for their assistance, and conclusion (Philip. 4: 10-23).

Epistle to the Colossianswas the result of a visit from Epaphras, the evangelist of the Church in Colossae (Col. 1: 7-8), who reported that the Colossians were falling into serious error, the result of a deep consciousness of sin leading to a desire to attain moral perfection by mechanical means, the careful observance of external ordinances (Col. 2: 16) and ascetic restrictions (Col. 2: 20), coupled with special devotion to a host of angelic mediators. The attractiveness of such teaching was due not only to the satisfaction it offered to the craving after sanctification, but also to the show it made of superior wisdom and greater insight into the mysteries of the universe. Paul shows that Christ, in his own person, is the one principle of the unity of the universe, and that sanctification is to be found only through union with him.

Analysis of Colossians

1. Salutation, thanksgiving, and prayer (Col. 1: 1-13).

2. Doctrinal.

a. Christ, our Redeemer, the author and goal of all creation, the home of all divine perfection, in whom is the reconciliation of the universe (Col. 1: 14- 2: 5).

b. Hence the importance of union with him (Col. 2: 6-12).

c. Danger of ceremonialism and of angel worship (Col. 2: 13-19).

d. Importance of dying and rising again with Christ (Col. 2: 20- 3: 4).

3. Exhortation.

a. Every evil inclination to be subdued (Col. 3: 5-11).

b. We must clothe ourselves in all graces of the Spirit (Col. 3: 12-17).

c. Social duties to be observed (Col. 3: 18-4: 6).

4. Personal: commendations and greetings (Col. 4: 7-18).

EPISTLE TO THE EPHESIANS was carried by the same messenger who bore the Colossians' letter. The epistle is of great importance, for it contains Paul's teaching regarding the Church of Christ.

Analysis of Ephesians

1. Salutation (Eph. 1: 1-2).

2. Doctrinal: The Church of Christ.

a. Thanksgiving for blessings bestowed in Christ (Eph. 1: 3-14), and prayer for the further enlightenment of his converts (Eph. 1: 15- 2: 10).

b. The change in their state: once aliens, now fellow-citizens of the saints, gentile and Jew henceforth united in one Church (Eph. 2: 11-22), a mystery now revealed (Eph. 3: 1-12).

c. Prayer and thanksgiving (Eph. 3: 13-21).

3. Practical exhortation.

a. Necessity of unity (Eph. 4: 1-6), each developing his own gift for the good of the whole; role of apostles and prophets in the Church (Eph. 4: 7-16).

b. The new man (Eph. 4: 17- 5: 21).

c. Teaching about marriage, children, and servants (Eph. 5: 22- 6: 9).

d. The Christian armor (Eph. 6: 10-20).

4. Reference to Tychicus (Eph. 6: 21-22); blessing (Eph. 6: 23-24).

Epistle to Philemon is a private letter about Onesimus, a slave who had robbed his master, Philemon, and run away to Rome. Paul sent him back to his master at Colossae in company with Tychicus the bearer of the epistle to the Colossians. Paul asks that Onesimus be forgiven and received back as a fellow Christian.

Epistle to the Hebrews was written to Jewish members of the Church to persuade them that significant aspects of the law of Moses, as a forerunner, had been fulfilled in Christ, and that the higher gospel law of Christ had replaced it. When Paul returned to Jerusalem at the end of his third mission (about A.D. 60), he found that many thousands of Jewish members of the Church were still "zealous of the law" of Moses (Acts 21: 20). This was at least ten years after the conference at Jerusalem had determined that certain ordinances of the law of Moses were not necessary for the salvation of gentile Christians, but had not settled the matter for Jewish Christians. it appears that soon thereafter, Paul wrote the epistle to the Hebrews to show them by their own scripture and by sound reason why they should no longer practice the law of Moses. The epistle is built on a carefully worked-out plan. Some have felt that the literary style is different from that of Paul's other letters. However, the ideas are certainly Paul's.

Analysis of Hebrews

1. God has spoken to our fathers for centuries by means of prophets, but in our time he has sent his son Jesus, who is the heir and the Creator, an the exact image of the Father (Heb. 1: 1-3).

2. Superiority of Jesus.

a. Jesus is greater than the angels. He has a more excellent name, inheritance, and higher calling. They are servants; he is the Son (Heb. 1: 4- 2: 18).

b. If the word of angels is important, how much "more earnest heed" we ought to give to the things spoken by the Lord (Jesus) (Heb. 2: 1-4).

3. Jesus is greater than Moses. Moses was a faithful servant, but Jesus was a faithful son (Heb. 3: 1-6).

4. The superiority of Jesus' word.

a. The Israelites while travelling through the wilderness could not enter into the promised land because they did not believe and obey the teachings of God received through Moses (Heb. 3: 7-19).

b. How much more important it is, therefore, to obey the words of Jesus who is greater than Moses, if we wish to enter the heavenly land (Heb. 4: 1-2).

5. Jesus, as a high priest of Melchizedek, is superior to the high priests of the law of Moses.

a. Jesus was of the order of Melchizedek, which is greater than the order of Aaron. Melchizedek was even greater than Abraham (Heb. 7: 1-12).

b. The law of the Melchizedek Priesthood (gospel) is greater than the law of the Aaronic Priesthood (law of Moses) (Heb. 5: 1- 7: 28).

6. The tabernacle service was symbolic (or a shadow) or the real events.

a. The high priest under the law went through the veil into the Holy of Holies; but Jesus, the great high priest, has gone into heaven itself (Heb. 6: 19-20; Heb. 9: 1-14 ).

b. The traveling of Israel out of Egypt, through the wilderness, crossing over the Jordan River into the promised land, is similar to a man forsaking the worldly things, going through the wilderness of temptation, and finally passing through the veil of death into the celestial kingdom (cf. Alma 37: 38-45; D&C 84: 21-24 ).

7. The first covenant (testament) under Moses was fulfilled, and Jesus brought a new covenant (testament); thus we have in the Bible the Old and New Testaments (Heb. 8: 6- 9: 28). That which is therefore fulfilled and is old "is ready to vanish away" (Heb. 8: 13).

8. Exhortation to faithfulness and diligence (Heb. 10: 1-39).

9. A discourse on faith (Heb. 11: 1-40).

10. Admonitions and greetings (Heb. 12: 1- 13: 25).

Characteristics of the Third Group. The characteristic doctrine of this third group is the ascension and present sovereignty of Jesus Christ over the world and the Church. Problems of thought and of action pressed for solution. The gospel is shown to be the guide to a true philosophy, as well as to possess the power to produce right conduct and to satisfy the social as well as the individual needs of men.


Titus, 1 and 2 Timothy

These epistles, known as the pastoral epistles, deal mainly with questions relating to the internal discipline and organization of the Christian body and with the ideal of the pastoral office. We learn from them that Paul was set free from his first imprisonment in Rome, and revisited his old friends in Greece and Asia Minor. During this interval of freedom 1 Tim. and the epistle to Titus were written.

1 Timothy (see also Timothy ).

In the course of his travels after his first imprisonment Paul came to Ephesus, where he left Timothy to check the growth of certain unprofitable forms of speculation, intending (1 Tim. 3: 14) afterwards to return. As a delay might occur, he writes to him, perhaps from Macedonia (1 Tim. 1: 3), to give him counsel and encouragement in the fulfillment of his duty.

Analysis of 1 Timothy

1. Salutation (1 Tim. 1: 1-2).

2. Foolish speculations and legalism to be kept in check as dangerous to the simplicity of the gospel (1 Tim. 1: 3-20).

3. Directions about public worship, and about the character and conduct of ministers (1 Tim. 2: 1- 3: 13).

4. Summary of the Christian's creed (1 Tim. 3: 14-16).

5. Warning against foolish asceticism (1 Tim. 4: 1-16).

6. Hints to Timothy about the treatment of his flock (1 Tim. 5: 1- 6: 2).

7. Warnings against various dangers (1 Tim. 6: 3-19).

8. Conclusion (1 Tim. 6: 20-21).

Epistle to Titus (see also Titus ).

Analysis of Titus

1. Salutation (Titus 1: 1-4).

2. Qualifications of an elder (Titus 1: 5-9).

3. Discipline in the Cretan Church (Titus 1: 10-16).

4. Proper treatment of various classes of Christians (Titus 2: 1-15).

5. General exhortation (Titus 3: 1-11).

6. Personal messages (Titus 3: 12-15).

2 Timothywas written during Paul's second imprisonment, shortly before his martyrdom. It contains the apostle's last words, and shows the wonderful courage and trust with which he faced death.

Analysis of 2 Timothy

1. Salutation (2 Tim. 1: 1-2).

2. Charge to Timothy (2 Tim. 1: 3-14).

3. The desertion by old friends, and the faithfulness of others (2 Tim. 1: 15-18).

4. Various warnings and directions (2 Tim. 2: 1-26).

5. Dangers ahead and how to meet them (2 Tim. 3: 1- 4: 5).

6. Paul's confidence in the face of death (2 Tim. 4: 6-8).

7. A message to friends (2 Tim. 4: 9-12).

Characteristics of the Fourth Group. The pastoral epistles, being addressed to men engaged in the ministry of the Church, are occupied mainly with questions relating to the internal discipline and organization of the Christian body and with the ideal of the pastoral office. The development and training of the life of godliness have taken the place of instruction in the faith. At the same time it is striking to notice the way in which Paul emphasizes the universality of God's saving purpose (1 Tim. 2: 4; 1 Tim. 4: 10; Titus 2: 11; Titus 3: 4 ), and the bounty shines out in every part of his creation (1 Tim. 4: 4; 1 Tim. 6: 13, 17).

Summary: It is from Paul's writings that we learn the most about the N.T. Church, but it must be remembered that they were written for the use of men who were already members of the Church. The N.T. presupposes on the part of its readers at least an elementary knowledge of gospel truth. Paul's life is characterized by an extraordinary zeal for the Lord. His greatest contribution is what he tells us about Jesus.

Bible Dictionary

Peace offering

See Sacrifices.

Bible Dictionary


One’s very own, exclusive, or special; not used in the Bible as odd or eccentric. The Hebrew word segullah, which is translated peculiar in Deut. 14: 2 and Deut. 26: 18, is translated special in Deut. 7: 6. Compare the various translations of the same word in Ex. 19: 5; Ps. 135: 4; Eccl. 2: 8; Mal. 3: 17. Titus 2: 14 and 1 Pet. 2: 9 should carry the meaning of the saints’ being the Lord’s own special people or treasure.

Bible Dictionary



Son of Remaliah; kills his master Pekahiah and becomes king of Israel (2 Kgs. 15: 25-32; 2 Kgs. 16: 1 ); invades Judah with Rezin (2 Kgs. 15: 37; 2 Kgs. 16: 5; 2 Chr. 28: 6; Isa. 7: 1 ); Israel invaded by Tiglath-pileser; Pekah killed by Hoshea (2 Kgs. 15: 29-30). There is much difficulty in deciding the chronology of Pekah’s reign.

See Chronological Tables.

Bible Dictionary



Son of Eber (Gen. 10: 25; Gen. 11: 16-19; 1 Chr. 1: 19, 25; D&C 133: 24 ).

Bible Dictionary


Not mentioned in the N.T., Pella was a gentile settlement to which Christians of Jerusalem fled at the beginning of the Jewish rebellion against Rome in A.D. 66. It was situated in what is now Jordan, just east of the Jordan River, about 50 miles northeast of Jerusalem.

Bible Dictionary


The Face of God (Gen. 32: 30).

Elsewhere,Penuel. (1) By the Jordan, where Jacob wrestled with a man (Gen. 32: 31); the town there was destroyed by Gideon (Judg. 8: 8-9, 17); rebuilt by Jeroboam (1 Kgs. 12: 25).

(2)1 Chr. 4: 4.

(3)1 Chr. 8: 25.

Bible Dictionary


The Roman silver denarius.

See Money.

Bible Dictionary


A Greek word meaning the fivefold book; a name given to the five books that stand at the beginning of our Bible and that contain the Torah or law of Israel. The Pentateuch was written by Moses, although it is evident that he used several documentary sources from which he compiled the book of Genesis, beside a divine revelation to him. It is also evident that scribes and copyists have left their traces upon the Pentateuch as we have it today; for example, the explanation of Moses’ supposed death (Deut. 34: 5-12) was surely added by a later hand. But latter-day revelation confirms that Moses was the author of the first five books of the Bible: Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, Deuteronomy (1 Ne. 5: 10-11; cf. 2 Ne. 3: 17; Moses 1: 40-41 ).

In the Pentateuch we find the fundamental truths manifesting the purposes of God; for example, the creation of the world; the creation of man and animals; the fall of Adam; the means of redemption; the peopling of the earth; the commandments of God; the establishing of the Abrahamic family and covenant; and the history of the house of Israel from Abraham to entry into the promised land. A major contribution of the Pentateuch is an emphasis on the importance of holiness and moral character in the worshipper of the Holy God. “Ye shall be holy; for I am holy” (Lev. 11: 44).

Bible Dictionary


See Feasts.

Bible Dictionary



A people of Palestine; apparently a general name for Canaanite tribes who had no fortified towns (Josh. 3: 10; Josh. 17: 15 ).

Bible Dictionary


The Persians were a tribe who in the 8th century B.C. inhabited a district east of Elam. Cyrus united the Medes and Persians, conquered Babylon (538 B.C.), and founded the Persian Empire, which extended from Afghanistan to the Mediterranean, including Asia Minor. Its capitals were Persepolis, Babylon, Susa or Shushan, and Ecbatana or Achmetha. Judaea was a subject province to the Persian Empire from 530 until 334 B.C., when it passed, along with the other provinces of that empire, into the hands of Alexander the Great.

Bible Dictionary



Brother of Andrew (John 1: 40) and son of Jonah (Matt. 16: 17); also known as Simeon (Acts 15: 14; 2 Pet. 1: 1 ) or Simon; originally a fisherman of Bethsaida, on the western coast of the Sea of Galilee. He was called by Jesus to be a disciple (Matt. 4: 18-22; Mark 1: 16-20; Luke 5: 1-11; John 1: 40-42 ); at that time he was living at Capernaum with his wife and his wife’s mother (Matt. 8: 14; Mark 1: 29; Luke 4: 38 ). His Aramaic name, Cephas, of which Peter is the Greek equivalent, was given him by the Lord (John 1: 40-42). He was one of the three disciples present on several important occasions (Matt. 17: 1; Matt. 26: 37; Mark 5: 37 ). Other references to him are found in Matt. 14: 28-33; John 6: 66-71; and in the very important passage Matt. 16: 13-19, where we find his confession of the Lord’s Messiahship and Godhead. The words then addressed to him, “Thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church,” have been made the foundation of the papal claims. But it is the Godhead of Christ, which Peter had just confessed, that is the true keystone of the Church.

Other events connected with his life: his denial (Matt. 26: 33-35, 58, 69-75; for parallel passages in the other Gospels, see the Harmony under Gospels ); at the resurrection (Mark 16: 7; Luke 24: 12, 34; John 20: 2-7; 1 Cor. 15: 5 ); with our Lord by the Sea of Galilee (John 21); in Jerusalem after Pentecost (Acts 2- 5); with Simon Magus (Acts 8: 14-24); at Lydda and Joppa (Acts 9: 32-43); with Cornelius (Acts 10- 11: 18); in prison (Acts 12: 1-19); at the Jerusalem conference (Acts 15: 7-11; Gal. 2: 7-9 ); and at Antioch (Gal. 2: 11 ff.). From his epistle we learn (1 Pet. 5: 13) that he worked in Babylon (which may be the well-known city on the Euphrates, or more likely is a disguised name for Rome), and had as his companions Mark and Silvanus or Silas. It was under his direction that Mark wrote his Gospel. From A.D. 44 to 61 he was probably at work in Syrian towns, having Antioch as his center. It is generally believed that he suffered martyrdom at Rome, perhaps in 64 or 65.

Peter was one of the greatest of men. It is true that the N.T. recounts some mortal weaknesses, but it also illustrates that he overcame them and was made strong by his faith in Jesus Christ. The Lord honored Peter by selecting him to hold the keys of the kingdom on earth (Matt. 16: 13-18), and it was upon the holy mount that Peter received these keys from the Savior, Moses, and Elias (Elijah) (Matt. 17: 1-12). Peter was the chief apostle of his day; and after the death, resurrection, and ascension of the Savior, it was Peter who called the Church together and acted in the office of his calling as the one who possessed the keys of the priesthood (Acts 1: 2). It was through Peter’s ministry that the gospel was first opened up to the gentiles (Acts 10- 11).

In the latter days Peter, with James and John, came from heaven and literally conferred the Melchizedek Priesthood and the keys thereof upon Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery. This took place in May or June 1829, near Harmony, Pennsylvania. See D&C 27: 12-13.

Bible Dictionary

Peter, Epistles of

The first epistle was written from “Babylon” (i.e., probably Rome) soon after the outbreak of the Neronian persecution, A.D. 64, and is addressed to Christians in the different provinces of what is now called Asia Minor. Its object is to encourage (cf. Luke 22: 32 ) men who were in danger of being terrified into a denial of their Lord, but it also contains valuable teaching about the incarnation and atonement (1 Pet. 1: 11, 18-19; 1 Pet. 2: 21-25; 1 Pet. 3: 18; 1 Pet. 4: 1, 12-19 ), and the doctrine of regeneration (1 Pet. 1: 3, 23).

Analysis of the First Epistle

1: 1-2, salutation; 3-12, thanksgiving for the new life that the resurrection of Jesus Christ had brought with it; 13-25, an earnest call to a life of holiness, obedience, and love, remembering the price of our redemption.

2: 1-10, Christ is the cornerstone in the “spiritual house” into which individual Christians are built as “lively stones”; 11-12, the flesh must therefore be kept in subjection, and, 13-25, obedience must be rendered to constituted authority, even undeserved punishment being endured with patience, remembering the sufferings of Christ.

3: 1-7, the duties of wives and husbands; 8-12, exhortation to unity and love; 13-17, the need of care lest the force of our witness should be marred by arrogance or moral laxity; 18-22, if suffering comes, there is strength to endure in the thought of the sufferings of Christ, who, after his mortal death, preached the gospel also in the spirit world (see also 1 Pet. 4: 6 ).

4: 1-6, fresh exhortation to mortify the flesh, and, 7-11, to exercise our gifts for the good of all and the glory of Jesus Christ; 12-19, to be allowed a share in the Messianic sufferings is an earnest of glory, and a ground for thanksgiving, but not for presumption or moral carelessness.

5: 1-11, practical exhortations; 12-14, salutations.

The second epistlewas apparently addressed to the same churches as the first (2 Pet. 3: 1). It was written in the near prospect of death (2 Pet. 1: 14), and aims at guarding against apostasy. In ch. 1 we read some of Peter’s most forceful language, explaining how man can lay hold of the promise of eternal life and obtain the more sure word of prophecy (2 Pet. 1: 19; cf. D&C 131: 5 ). Ch. 2 speaks of the sophistry and lack of faith that often accompanies worldly learning and acclaim. Ch. 3 reaffirms that the Lord will come from heaven in great glory and in judgment upon the earth. The Prophet Joseph Smith said that “Peter penned the most sublime language of any of the apostles” (HC 5: 392).

Bible Dictionary


(See Egypt.)

The title given to the Egyptian kings; its meaning is “Great House” (cf. “Sublime Porte” or Gate). Nine or ten different Pharaohs are mentioned in the O.T., belonging to several different dynasties.

(1) The Pharaoh (probably one of the Hyksos or Shepherd Kings) visited by Abram (Gen. 12: 15-20).

(2) Pharaoh (also one of the Hyksos) and Joseph (Gen. 39 - 50).

(3) The Pharaohs of oppression, Seti I and Ramses II, belonging to the 19th dynasty (Ex. 1; Ex. 2 ); it is generally believed that the Pharaoh of the Exodus was Menephthah, but the discovery of the Tell el-Amarna tablets has thrown doubt on this.

(4) The Pharaoh whose daughter Solomon married, perhaps Pinetchem of the 21st dynasty (1 Kgs. 3: 1; 1 Kgs. 7: 8; 1 Kgs. 9: 16, 24 ).

(5) Shishak or Sheshonk, of the 22nd dynasty, who befriended Jeroboam.

(6) So (Shabakah) with whom Hoshea makes alliance (2 Kgs. 17: 4).

(7) Pharaoh Necho, who defeated Josiah at Megiddo (2 Kgs. 23: 29-35; Jer. 25: 19; Jer. 46: 17, 25; Jer. 47: 1 ).

(8) Pharaoh Hophra, who sent an army to the assistance of Zedekiah (Jer. 37: 5-11; Jer. 43: 9; Ezek. 17: 17; Ezek. 29: 2-3; Ezek. 30: 21-25; Ezek. 31: 2, 18; Ezek. 32: 2, 31-32 ). See also Abr. 1.

Bible Dictionary


A religious party among the Jews. The name denotes separatists. They prided themselves on their strict observance of the law, and on the care with which they avoided contact with things gentile. Their belief included the doctrine of immortality and resurrection of the body and the existence of angels and spirits. They upheld the authority of oral tradition as of equal value with the written law. The tendency of their teaching was to reduce religion to the observance of a multiplicity of ceremonial rules, and to encourage self-sufficiency and spiritual pride. They were a major obstacle to the reception of Christ and the gospel by the Jewish people. For the Lord’s judgment on them and their works see Matt. 23; Mark 7; Luke 11: 37-54.

Bible Dictionary

Philemon of Colossae

(Col. 4: 9; Philem. 1: 10 ), converted by Paul (Philem. 1: 1). He was the owner of the slave Onesimus, who ran away and joined Paul, and was sent back by him with a letter to his master.

See Pauline Epistles.

Bible Dictionary


Lover of horses.

(1) The apostle; formerly of Bethsaida (John 1: 44); mentioned along with Bartholomew (Matt. 10: 3; Luke 6: 14; see also John 1: 43-46; John 6: 5, 7; John 12: 21-22; John 14: 8-9 ).

(2) One of the seven; an evangelist (Acts 6: 5; Acts 21: 8 ); preaches at Samaria, and to the Ethiopian eunuch (Acts 8); entertains Paul (Acts 21: 8).

(3) Son of Herod the Great and Mariamne; first husband of Herodias (Matt. 14: 3; Mark 6: 17; Luke 3: 19 ). See Herod.

(4) Another son of Herod, tetrarch of Trachonitis (Luke 3: 1), founder of Caesarea Philippi.

Bible Dictionary


A city of Macedonia, founded by Philip, father of Alexander the Great; visited by Paul (Acts 16: 12-40; Acts 20: 6; see also Philip. 1: 1; 1 Thes. 2: 2 ). It is described as a Roman “colony,” i.e., it contained a body of Roman citizens, placed there for military purposes, governed directly from Rome and independent of provincial governors and local magistrates. The church there was mainly gentile, there being no Jewish synagogue. Paul’s visit was memorable for his assertion of his rights as a Roman citizen (Acts 16: 37). The converts were afterwards generous in their contributions toward his support (Philip. 4: 15).

Bible Dictionary

Philippians, Epistle to

See Pauline Epistles.

Bible Dictionary


A tribe that originally came from Caphtor (i.e., Crete, or perhaps part of Egypt) (Amos 9: 7), and occupied before the days of Abraham (Gen. 21: 32) the rich lowland on the Mediterranean coast from Joppa to the Egyptian desert. They formed a confederation of five chief cities, namely, Ashdod, Gaza, Ashkelon, Gath, and Ekron, each governed by its “lord.” For many years there was a struggle for supremacy between them and the Israelites, Philistine power being at its height at the time of Saul’s death, but rapidly declining during the reign of David. They were conquered by Tiglath-pileser in 734 B.C. Their country later formed part of the Persian Empire; in N.T. times it was annexed to the Roman province of Syria. Strangely enough the name of the territory of these detested enemies of the Jews has become one familiar title (Palestine) for the whole of the Holy Land.

Bible Dictionary


(1) Grandson of Aaron (Ex. 6: 25); kills the two offenders at Peor (Num. 25: 7, 11; Num. 31: 6; Ps. 106: 30 ); Phinehas and the trans-Jordanic tribes (Josh. 22: 15, 30-32); his home (Josh. 24: 33); high priest (Judg. 20: 28; 1 Chr. 6: 4, 50; 1 Chr. 9: 20 ); descendants (Ezra 7: 5; Ezra 8: 2, 33 ).

(2) Son of Eli (1 Sam. 1: 3; 1 Sam. 2: 34; 1 Sam. 4: 4, 11, 17, 19 ).

Bible Dictionary


The coastland extending from the Philistine territory to the mouth of the Orontes. The Phoenicians were a Semitic race, their language closely resembling Hebrew. They were a great commercial people, distributing the wares of Egypt and Babylon, and having trading stations all over the Mediterranean, Carthage being the most important. Their territory was never conquered by the Israelites, but many Israelite kings, including David, Solomon, and Ahab, entered into alliances with them for purposes of trade. Phoenicia consisted of a number of small states ruled by the kings of the great cities, but the Hebrews had most to do with the people of Tyre and Sidon. It was partially conquered by Assyria and Persia, and was finally merged in the empire of Alexander the Great. Phoenician religion (see Ashtaroth; Baal) was a nature worship of a very sensuous kind, and its influence over the Israelites was disastrous, especially after the marriage of Ahab to Jezebel, a Phoenician princess.

See Tyre; Zidon.

Bible Dictionary


(See Frontlets.)

Amulets fastened on the forehead, or on the left arm. They were small strips of parchment inscribed with texts (see Ex. 13: 1-10, 11-16; Deut. 6: 4-9; Deut. 11: 13-21 ) and enclosed in leather cases (see Matt. 23: 5 ).

Bible Dictionary

Piece of silver

Matt. 26: 15; = a silver shekel, or stater (see Money ). Thirty shekels was the price of a slave (Ex. 21: 32).

Bible Dictionary


Roman procurator in Judaea, A.D. 26-36 (Luke 3: 1). His headquarters were at Caesarea, but he was generally present in Jerusalem at feast time. He had a great contempt for the Jewish people and for their religion. During his term of office there was much disorder, mainly in consequence of an attempt he made to introduce into the city silver busts of the emperor on the Roman ensigns. In Luke 13: 1 there is a reference to an outbreak during one of the feasts, when Pilate sent soldiers into the temple courts and certain Galileans were slain. He is prominent in the story of our Lord’s Passion (Matt. 27: 2-26; Matt. 27: 58-66; Mark 15: 1-15, 42-47; Luke 23: 1-25, 50-53; John 18: 28 - 19: 22, 31, 38). As the Sanhedrin had no power to carry out their sentence of death, Pilate’s consent had to be obtained. The Lord was therefore charged before him with stirring up sedition, making himself a king, and forbidding to give tribute to Caesar. Pilate saw that there was no evidence to support the charge, and, having received a warning from his wife, he wished to dismiss the case. He also tried to avoid all responsibility in the matter by sending our Lord for trial to Herod Antipas, tetrarch of Galilee, but Herod sent him back without any formal decision on the case. It was not until the Jews threatened to send a report to the Emperor Tiberius, whose suspicious nature Pilate well knew, that he passed a death sentence, knowing it to be unjust. The sentence was carried out under his directions by Roman soldiers. Pilate was removed from office a few years later in consequence of a disturbance in Samaria.

Bible Dictionary

Pinnacle of the Temple

Matt. 4: 5; Luke 4: 9. It is uncertain what is meant; probably part of the roof of one of the temple porches overlooking the deep valley of the Kedron or of Hinnom.

Bible Dictionary



A hill in Moab, opposite Jericho (Num. 21: 20), whence Balaam (Num. 23: 14) and Moses saw the land of Israel (Deut. 3: 27; Deut. 34: 1 ). Nebo and the top (or head) of Pisgah may be two names of the same peak.

Bible Dictionary


Frequently used in the O.T. as equiv. to the grave (e.g., Job 33: 18, 24, 28, 30 ).

Bible Dictionary


A treasure city of Egypt (Ex. 1: 11); discovered by M. Naville in 1880, several monuments of interest being now in the British Museum. The store chambers are found to have been built with three kinds of brick, some made with straw, some with reeds or stubble, some with Nile mud alone. The bricks bear the cartouche or oval of Ramses II, who is thus shown to have been the Pharaoh of the oppression.

Bible Dictionary


A constellation of seven stars (Job 9: 9; Job 38: 31 ). In ancient times the rising and setting of the Pleiades marked the beginning and the end of the season of navigation.

Bible Dictionary


See Castor.

Bible Dictionary


A name of Pilate, indicating his connection with the ancient Samnite family of the Pontii.

See Pilate.

Bible Dictionary


A country in northeastern Asia Minor, forming part of the shore of the Euxine or Black Sea (Acts 2: 9; Acts 18: 2; 1 Pet. 1: 1 ).

Bible Dictionary


Devoted to the Sun.

Priest of On and father-in-law of Joseph (Gen. 41: 45, 50; Gen. 46: 20 ).

Bible Dictionary


Captain of Pharaoh’s bodyguard and Joseph’s master in Egypt (Gen. 37: 36; Gen. 39: 1 ).

Bible Dictionary

Potter’s Field

The name of a field bought with the money returned by Judas to the chief priests (Matt. 27: 3-10); also known as Aceldama.

Bible Dictionary


(1) A weight (see Weights and Measures ).

(2) In Luke 19: 20, a mina (see Money ).

Bible Dictionary


The headquarters of the Roman military governor, wherever he happened to be (Matt. 27: 27; Mark 15: 16; John 18: 28 ). In Philip. 1: 13 it probably denotes the body of judges forming the supreme court at Rome.

Bible Dictionary


Before the first generation of mankind had passed away, men began to call upon the name of the Lord (Gen. 4: 26; Moses 5: 4 ). Prayers, whether with (Gen. 12: 8; Gen. 13: 4 ) or without (Gen. 20: 7; Gen. 32: 9-11 ) sacrifice, were constantly offered by the patriarchs to God. The efficacy of the intercession of good men was recognized (Gen. 18: 23; Gen. 20: 7; Ex. 32: 11 ).

Prayer is nowhere specifically commanded as a duty in the law, and prayers were not prescribed at the sacrifices except on two occasions: a confession of sin on the Day of Atonement (Lev. 16: 21), and a thanksgiving when offering the firstfruits and tithes (Deut. 26: 3, 13). It is, however, certain from the nature of things, and from the custom in later times, that prayer accompanied sacrifice.

Even in the times of the Judges, the children of Israel did not forget to cry unto the Lord, and a model of prayer is furnished by Hannah (1 Sam. 2: 1). Samuel was recognized by his nation to be characteristically a man of prayer (1 Sam. 7: 5, 8; 1 Sam. 12: 19, 23; Ps. 99: 6 ). David’s Psalms, and the Psalms generally, breathe the highest spirit of prayer. The nation that possessed them must have been rich in teachers and examples of prayer. Remarkable prayers were prayed by Solomon (1 Kgs. 8); Hezekiah (2 Kgs. 19: 14, etc.; Isa. 38: 9, etc.); Ezra (Ezra 9: 5); the Levites (Neh. 9: 5, etc.); and Daniel (Dan. 9: 3, etc.). “Making many prayers” was a part of the corrupt religion of Israel under the later kings (Isa. 1: 15), and a marked feature of the religion of the Pharisees (Matt. 6: 5; Matt. 23: 14 ).

It was the custom to pray three times a day. So David (Ps. 55: 17), Daniel (Dan. 6: 10), and the later Jews. Prayer was said before meat (1 Sam. 9: 13; Matt. 15: 36; Acts 27: 35 ).

The attitude of prayer ordinarily was standing (1 Sam. 1: 26; Neh. 9: 2, 4; Matt. 6: 5; Luke 18: 11, 13 ); also kneeling (1 Kgs. 8: 54; Dan. 6: 10; Ezra 9: 5 ); or prostrate (Josh. 7: 6; Neh. 8: 6 ). The hands were spread forth to heaven (1 Kgs. 8: 22; Ezra 9: 5; Isa. 1: 15; Ps. 141: 2 ). Smiting on the breast and rending of the garments signified special sorrow (Luke 18: 13; Ezra 9: 5 ). The Lord’s attitude in prayer is recorded only once. In the Garden of Gethsemane he knelt (Luke 22: 41), fell on his face (Matt. 26: 39), fell on the ground (Mark 14: 35). It is noteworthy that Stephen (Acts 7: 60), Peter (Acts 9: 40), Paul (Acts 20: 36; Acts 21: 5 ), and the Christians generally (Acts 21: 5) knelt to pray.

Prayers were said at the Sanctuary (1 Sam. 1: 9-12; Ps. 42: 2, 4; 1 Kgs. 8 ), or looking toward the Sanctuary (1 Kgs. 8: 44, 48; Dan. 6: 10; Ps. 5: 7 ); on the housetop or in an upper chamber (Acts 10: 9; Dan. 6: 10 ). The Pharisees prayed publicly in the synagogues and at the corners of the streets (Matt. 6: 5). The Lord prayed upon the tops of mountains (Matt. 14: 23; Luke 9: 28 ), or in solitary places (Mark 1: 35).

As soon as we learn the true relationship in which we stand toward God (namely, God is our Father, and we are his children), then at once prayer becomes natural and instinctive on our part (Matt. 7: 7-11). Many of the so-called difficulties about prayer arise from forgetting this relationship. Prayer is the act by which the will of the Father and the will of the child are brought into correspondence with each other. The object of prayer is not to change the will of God, but to secure for ourselves and for others blessings that God is already willing to grant, but that are made conditional on our asking for them. Blessings require some work or effort on our part before we can obtain them. Prayer is a form of work, and is an appointed means for obtaining the highest of all blessings.

There are many passages in the N.T. that teach the duty of prayer (e.g., Matt. 7: 7; Matt. 26: 41; Luke 18: 1; Luke 21: 36; Eph. 6: 18; Philip. 4: 6; Col. 4: 2; 1 Thes. 5: 17, 25; 1 Tim. 2: 1, 8 ). Christians are taught to pray in Christ’s name (John 14: 13-14; John 15: 7, 16; John 16: 23-24 ). We pray in Christ’s name when our mind is the mind of Christ, and our wishes the wishes of Christ - when his words abide in us (John 15: 7). We then ask for things it is possible for God to grant. Many prayers remain unanswered because they are not in Christ’s name at all; they in no way represent his mind, but spring out of the selfishness of man’s heart.

Book of Mormon references on prayer include 1 Ne. 18: 3; Alma 34: 17-28; Ether 2: 14.

Bible Dictionary


At once, meaning instantly, and not the current usage of soon or after a while (Matt. 21: 19; Matt. 26: 52-53 ).

Bible Dictionary


Come before, precede (Job 41: 11; Ps. 88: 13; Amos 9: 10; 1 Thes. 4: 15 ). To anticipate (Ps. 119: 147-148). To oppose or hinder (Ps. 18: 5, 18). To speak first to, as in Matt. 17: 25.

Bible Dictionary


See Goads.

Bible Dictionary


The essential idea of a Hebrew priest was that of a mediator between his people and God by representing them officially in worship and sacrifice. By virtue of his office he was able to draw nigh to God, while they, because of their sins and infirmities, must needs stand afar off. The priest exercised his office mainly at the altar by offering the sacrifices and above all the incense (Num. 16: 40; Num. 18: 2-3, 5, 7; Deut. 33: 10 ), but also by teaching the people the law (Deut. 33: 10; Lev. 10: 10, 11; Mal. 2: 7 ), by communicating to them the divine will (Num. 27: 21), and by blessing them in the name of the Lord (Num. 6: 22-27).

The priest does not take his office upon himself but is chosen of God (Num. 16: 5; Heb. 5: 4 ). In an especial sense he belongs to God (Num. 16: 5) and is holy to him (Num. 16: 5).

The priests must be Aaron’s sons (Num. 16: 3-10, 40; Num. 18: 1 ) and free from all important bodily blemishes or infirmities or diseases. They were under special restrictions with respect to uncleanness for the dead, marriage, wine or strong drink when engaged in sacerdotal duties (Lev. 10: 9). The ordinary universal prohibitions were specially binding on them; their families were under special and stricter laws, and liable to more severe punishments than the rest of the people.

Nothing is specified in the law as to age at which a priest might begin to exercise his office. Levites were qualified according to the law at 30 or 25 (Num. 4: 3; Num. 8: 23-26 ), and according to later usage at 20 (1 Chr. 23: 24, 27). Consecration to the priestly office consisted of two parts: ceremonial and sacrificial.

Their ceremonial functions were

(1) They were washed at the door of the tabernacle.

(2) They were clothed with the priestly garments (coats, girdles, and headtires).

(3) They were anointed (Ex. 40: 15) with holy oil.

Their sacrificial function included the offering of three sacrifices

(1) a bullock as a sin offering, to put away their sin;

(2) a ram as a burnt offering, to indicate the full and complete surrender of themselves to God;

(3) a ram as a peace or consecration offering. The blood of the ram was put upon the tip of the priest’s right ear, the thumb of his right hand, and the great toe of his right foot. Obedience to the divine voice and activity in the divine service were thus symbolized. The priest’s hands were filled symbolized. The priest’s hands were filled (cf. 1 Kgs. 13: 33, “consecrated him,” Heb. ‘filled his hand’) with the fat, the kidneys, the right thigh or shoulder, and part of the meal offering. The gifts that henceforward they would offer to the Lord on behalf of the people were thus committed to them.

For the maintenance of the priests were assigned

(1)Portions of the Altar Offerings - namely, the whole of the sin and guilt offerings (except the fat), and the meal offerings, except the small portion burnt on the altar (Num. 18: 9), the skin of the burnt offering (Lev. 7: 8); the wave breast and the heave thigh of the peace offerings (Lev. 7: 34).

(2)The Firstfruits, especially of the seven products of Palestine (Deut. 8: 8) - wheat, barley, oil, wine, figs, pomegranates, and honey; but also all kinds of fruits (Num. 18: 13; Deut. 26: 2 ); dough (Num. 15: 20-21; Neh. 10: 37 ); the fleece of sheep (Deut. 18: 4). There was also the heave offering, i.e., the gift of the best of the produce of the soil (Num. 18: 12; cf. Neh. 10: 35 with Neh. 10: 37 ).

(3)The Firstborn: the redemption money, in the case of man (five shekels, Num. 18: 16 ), and unclean beasts (one-fifth more than the priest’s estimation, Lev. 27: 27 ); and the clean beasts themselves (Num. 18: 15-17).

(4)The Tithe of the Levitical Tithe (Num. 18: 26-28).

(5)The Offerings. Some of these were given to the service of the Sanctuary, but things devoted were the priest’s (Lev. 27: 21).

(6)Certain cities (13 in number, all in Judah, Simeon, and Benjamin) with their suburbs; but the priests were to have no part or inheritance in the land (Num. 18: 20; Josh. 21: 13-19 ).

David divided the priestly families into twenty-four courses. Four only returned from the captivity, and these were again subdivided into twenty-four. Each course officiated for a week at a time, the change being made on the Sabbath, between the morning and the evening sacrifices. All the courses officiated together at the great festivals.

See also High Priest, and for priests of the Christian Church, see Ministry.

Bible Dictionary


(2 Tim. 4: 19) Same as Priscilla.

Bible Dictionary


Wife of Aquila

(Acts 18: 2, 18, 26; Rom. 16: 3; 1 Cor. 16: 19 ).

Bible Dictionary


The work of a Hebrew prophet was to act as God’s messenger and make known God’s will. The message was usually prefaced with the words “Thus saith Jehovah.” He taught men about God’s character, showing the full meaning of his dealings with Israel in the past. It was therefore part of the prophetic office to preserve and edit the records of the nation’s history; and such historical books as Joshua, Judges, 1 and 2 Sam., 1 and 2 Kings were known by the Jews as the former Prophets. It was also the prophet’s duty to denounce sin and foretell its punishment, and to redress, so far as he could, both public and private wrongs. He was to be, above all, a preacher of righteousness. When the people had fallen away from a true faith in Jehovah, the prophets had to try to restore that faith and remove false views about the character of God and the nature of the Divine requirement. In certain cases prophets predicted future events, e.g., there are the very important prophecies announcing the coming of Messiah’s kingdom; but as a rule prophet was a forthteller rather than a foreteller. In a general sense a prophet is anyone who has a testimony of Jesus Christ by the Holy Ghost, as in Num. 11: 25-29; Rev. 19: 10.

Bible Dictionary


Men of gentile birth who had been incorporated into the Jewish church. The ceremony of admission included circumcision, baptism, and a sacrifice. They were expected to observe the whole Mosaic law. Proselytes of this kind were probably few in number, though the Jews showed great zeal in their efforts to gain them (Matt. 23: 15). In addition to these there were attached to most Jewish synagogues a number of “God- fearing” or “devout” gentiles, who attended the services, but only observed part of the ceremonial law, and who were regarded as outside the Jewish church. There are many references to men of this kind in the N.T. (e.g., Acts 10: 2, 22; Acts 13: 16, 26, 43, 50; Acts 16: 14; Acts 17: 4, 17; Acts 18: 7 ).

The entry of a “Godfearer” or “devout” man into the Christian church caused considerable commotion among the rigid Jews in the church, since the “Godfearers” had not been circumcised as had the proselytes. Thus the joining of Cornelius was momentous event (Acts 10- 11), whereas the status of a proselyte such a Nicolas (identified in Acts 6: 5 ) is barely mentioned.

Bible Dictionary

Proverbs, Book of

The Heb. word rendered proverb is mashal, a similitude or parable, but the book contains many maxims and sayings not properly so called, and also connected poems of considerable length. There is much in it that does not rise above the plane of worldly wisdom, but throughout it is taken for granted that “the fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom” (Prov. 1: 7; Prov. 9: 10 ). The least spiritual of the Proverbs are valuable as reminding us that the voice of Divine Inspiration does not disdain to utter homely truths. The first section, chs. 1 - 9, is the most poetic and contains an exposition of true wisdom. Chs. 10 - 24 contain a collection of proverbs and sentences about the right and wrong ways of living. Chs. 25 - 29 contain the proverbs of Solomon that the men of Hezekiah, king of Judah, copied out. Chs. 30 and 31 contain the “burden” of Agur and Lemuel, the latter including a picture of the ideal wife, arranged in acrostic form. The book is frequently quoted in the N.T., the use of ch. 3 being specially noteworthy.

Bible Dictionary


The Psalms collectively are called in Hebrew Tehillim or “Praises,” but the word mizmor, which denotes a composition set to music, is found in the titles of many of them. The book is the first in order of the “Scriptures” (Kethubim) or Hagiographa, which with the Law and the Prophets make up the Hebrew O.T. See Bible.

No book of the Old Testament is more Christian in its inner sense or more fully attested as such by the use made of it than the Psalms. Out of a total of 283 direct citations from the Old Testament in the New, 116 have been counted from this one book. Much of Christianity by its preference for the Psalms reverses the custom of the Synagogue, which judged the psalmists’ inspiration inferior to that of the prophets, and set Moses on high above them all, so that no prophet might teach any new thing but only what was implicitly contained in the law.

Titles are added to some of the Psalms, but it is open to question whether these are as old as the words to which they are attached. They mainly refer to the manner in which the words were to be sung or accompanied. Some Psalms were to be accompanied by stringed instruments (Neginah, NeginothPss. 4, 54 - 55, 61, 67, 76, and Hab. 3: 19 ), others by wind instruments (Nehiloth Ps. 5); while such titles as “Set to Alamoth ” (Ps. 46) = maidens, or “Set to Sheminith ” (Pss. 6, 12) = the octave, seem to imply that there was singing in parts. Some of the titles appear to be intended to indicate the character of the Psalm, as Maschil = giving instruction (Pss. 32, 42, 44-45, 52 - 55, 74, 78, 78, 88 - 89, and 112), Michtam, rendered by some Golden Psalm (Pss. 16, 56 - 60); while Shiggaion (Ps. 7) with Shigionoth (Hab. 3: 1) may refer to the irregular erratic style of the compositions, and Gittith = belonging to Gath (Pss. 8, 81, 84) may relate either to the melody or to the instrument used in the performance. The other titles are all probably names of tunes, well known at the time, to which the Psalms were appointed to be sung.

Seventy-three of the psalms are ascribed to David, and so it was natural that the whole collection should be referred to as his, and that this convenient way of speaking should give rise in time to the popular belief that “the sweet psalmist of Israel” himself wrote all the so-called Psalms of David. Sacred psalmody is ascribed to him in general terms in 1 and 2 Chr., the accompanying instruments also being called “instruments of David,” as in Neh. 12: 36 and Amos 6: 5. In some cases in which a psalm is ascribed to David in the Hebrew, it is certain that he could not have written it, and it has been concluded that the Hebrew titles are sometimes inaccurate.

Bible Dictionary


Heb. nebel, sometimes translated “viol” or “lute.” A large harp, much used for accompanying religious music.

Bible Dictionary


The word refers to certain noncanonical writings purported to have come from biblical characters, and refers to books of ancient Jewish literature outside the canon and the apocrypha. The writings purport to be the work of ancient patriarchs and prophets, but are, in their present form, mostly productions from about 200 B.C. to A.D. 200.

These writings have at times been popular with some branches of Christianity, but by their very nature there is no accepted fixed limit to the number of writings that are called pseudepigrapha, for what one person or group regards as canon another may call pseudepigrapha. Some of the writings originated in Palestine and were written in Hebrew or Aramaic; others originated in North Africa and were written in coptic Greek and Ethiopic. These include legends about biblical characters, hymns, psalms, and apocalypses. Things relating to Enoch, Moses, and Isaiah are prominent.

Although not canonized nor accepted as scripture, the pseudepigrapha are useful in showing various concepts and beliefs held by ancient peoples in the Middle East. In many instances latter-day revelation gives the careful student sufficient insight to discern truth from error in the narratives, and demonstrates that there is an occasional glimmer of historical accuracy in those ancient writings. The student may profit from this, always applying the divine injunction that “whoso is enlightened by the Spirit shall obtain benefit therefrom” (D&C 91: 5).

Bible Dictionary


A town on the northern coast of Palestine, now called Acre (Acts 21: 7).

Bible Dictionary


Men who bought or farmed the taxes under the Roman government were called publicani. The name is also used to describe those who actually collected the money, and who were properly called portitores. Both classes were detested by the Jews, and any Jew who undertook the work was excommunicated. Many of the tax-gatherers in Galilee would be in the service of Herod, and not of Rome. There are many references in the N.T. to the readiness with which the publicans received the gospel (Matt. 9: 9-10; Matt. 10: 3; Matt. 21: 31-32; Mark 2: 14-15; Luke 3: 12; Luke 5: 27-29; Luke 7: 29; Luke 15: 1; Luke 18: 13; Luke 19: 2, 8 ).

Bible Dictionary


(1) King of Assyria, most likely another name of Tiglath-pileser II; received tribute from Menahem (2 Kgs. 15: 19; 1 Chr. 5: 26 ).

(2) Probably for Put (Isa. 66: 19).

Bible Dictionary


Occurs only in Dan. 1: 12, 16. The Heb. word denotes seeds, and may include the grains of leguminous vegetables or any other edible seeds.

Bible Dictionary


The object of the punishments of the Mosaic law was the extirpation of evil in Israel (Deut. 19: 19-21), and they were apportioned on the principle of righteous retribution. It was life for life, wound for wound, beast for beast (Ex. 21: 23-25; Lev. 24: 18 ff.). The ordinary capital punishment was stoning (Deut. 17: 5), the witnesses, after laying their hands on the head of the condemned, casting the first stone. Executions took place outside the city (Lev. 24: 14; 1 Kgs. 21: 13; Acts 7: 58 ). The dead body was sometimes burned with fire (Lev. 20: 14; Lev. 21: 9; Josh. 7: 25 ) or hanged on a tree (Deut. 21: 22). In the latter case it must be cut down and buried the same day (Deut. 21: 22). In the latter case it must be cut down and buried the same day (Deut. 21: 23). The inhabitants of a city given to idolatry were to be slain with the edge of the sword (Deut. 13: 15). Minor punishments were: beating with a rod - not more than 40 strokes could be administered (Deut. 25: 2-3; Prov. 10: 13 ); suffering the same injury that the wrongdoer had inflicted (Lev. 24: 17-22); fines in money or kind as compensation for the injury done (Ex. 22: 4-9; Deut. 22: 19 ); or in default, the delinquent might be sold as a slave (Ex. 22: 4-9; Deut. 22: 3 ). Neither imprisonment nor banishment was a punishment recognized by the law, but offenders were imprisoned under the kings (cf. Micaiah, Jeremiah, and the various allusions to prisons), and Ezra was authorized by Artaxerxes to punish lawbreakers by imprisonment and banishment (Ezra 7: 26). Torture was not allowed in any case. Punishments were as a rule inflicted on the offender alone, and not on his wife and family (Deut. 24: 16; cf. Josh. 7: 24-25 ).

Bible Dictionary


There were various purifying ceremonies. Bathing the flesh and the clothes in running water was used in all, and sufficed in the simplest cases. When the uncleanness was of a deeper character, a purifying water for sprinkling was provided: e.g., after contact with a corpse, water mingled with the ashes of a red cow (Num. 19: 9); for the leper, water in which the blood of a bird had been allowed to fall (Lev. 14: 6). In some cases sin and trespass offerings were also made; e.g., a man with an issue (Lev. 15: 13-14); a woman after childbirth (Lev. 12: 6, 8); and above all, the leper (Lev. 14: 2-32).

See also Clean and Unclean.

Bible Dictionary


A Jewish feast (Esth. 9: 26-32).

See Feasts.