Gnostic Doctrine

Saturday, 12 November 2022

Christian Kabbalah Christ in the Hebrew Alphabet

Christian Kabbalah 

A Study of the Twenty-two Letters of the Hebrew Alphabet
Christ in the Hebrew Alphabet

In Jewish mysticism there is a book titled Sefer Yetzirah the book is a study of The Twenty-Two Letters of the Hebrew alphabet. It is also origin for the Sefirot of later Kabbalah.

However the foundation of Christian tradition is based upon faith in the Lord Jesus Christ and his teachings found in the Gospels. Therefore Christians should not be looking into Jewish mystical tradition to find the truth. (Manmade Traditions Matthew 15:1-9)

The Gospel of Truth found in the Nag Hammadi Library has a different understanding of the Divine Alphabet

This is the knowledge of the living book which he revealed to the generations at the end, letters from him revealing how they’re not vowels or consonants, so that one might read them and think they’re meaningless, but they’re letters of the Truth – they speak and know themselves. Each letter is a complete thought, like a book that’s complete, since they’re letters written by the Unity, the Father having written them so that the generations, by means of his letters, might know the Father. (The Gospel of Truth)

The book's characters are not vowels and consonants but truth's own character

This study taken and adapted from the book "The Romance of the Hebrew Alphabet" (Logos Christadelphian Magazine) will attempt to connect the dots that form an undeniable picture of the Alpha and Omega (Jesus Christ) in the New Testament to the not so obvious, Aleph and Tav (Jesus Christ) in the Old Testament.

the Hebrew Letter ALEPH א

Τhis first letter signifies an ox-head, the letter originally being clearly the outline of an oxhead with its two horns: א. Try turning our English letter "A" upside down and you will see that it still resembles the animal's head with horns! The form of the letter originally displayed the rough outline of the horns of the ox as it might first appear to the farmer in the field as he sees the ox approaching. It is appropriately the first letter of the alphabet, describing the beginning of the farmer's activity.

This letter is called "the princely letter" as it is not only the beginning of the alphabet, but is also in a complete form: with four points to each extremity. It is in the most perfect form, like the "city is laid out as a square," mentioned in Rev. 21:16.

It is the letter that commences Psalm 119:1-8, and which sets out The Path of the Burden-Bearer, drawing attention to the first appearance of the ox-head with the idea of service and activity. The opening words set the sense of the whole section: "Blessed are the undefiled in the way, who walk in the law of Yahweh" (v. 1). Such "carry" the divine law into the field of life, and reveal the great purpose of the spiritual Alphabet: the pathway of the Blessed. The Master declared: "I am among you as one that serveth" (Lk. 22:27), for he is the commencement of the divine activity of the faithful.

The plural form of the word, alephim, is rendered "oxen" in Isa 30:24 and in Psalm 8:7. A similar word, from the same root, alluph, is found in Jer 11:19, and in its plural form, alluphim, in Psalm 144:4.

The word Aleph, is derived from the root alaph, which signifies "to associate with," hence, to learn, or cause to teach. It is translated "learn" (Pro. 22:25), "teach" (Job 33:33) and "teacheth" (35:11), "utter" (Job 15:5). From the same root is derived the related word alluwph, or the short alluph, and this is rendered "captain" (Jer. 13:21), "duke" (Gen. 36:15), "chief friend" (Pro. 16:28; 17:9), "governor" Zech. 9:7; 12:5,6), "guide" (Pro. 2:17; Psa. 55:13; Jer. 3:4; Micah 7:5), "ox" (Jer. 11:19). It signifies a familiar friend, to be gentle [i.e., to carry burdens], a bullock as tamed, and so a chieftain.

Now consider this in relation to the Hebrew language. Why is the first letter called aleph or ox-head? Because the head of the ox is first seen as it leads in thploughing. Aleph is the chief letter which leads the way for the rest of the Hebrew alphabet to follow. It is an apt symbol for the Lord Jesus Christ, who is the beginning of the spiritual creation of God (Rev. 3:14). He is the "head" who first appears at the front of the herd of the faithful (cp. Col. 1:18; 2:10).

Note The Hebrew aleph, is the same as the Greek alpha and Latin A.

Alpha, al'-phå (Gk.).

a The first letter of the Greek alphabet.

b A title applied to Christ (Rev.:8; 21:6; 22:13).

Meta. Christ, the word of God, or idea of Divine Mind, as the "beginning" or the "first-born" of all creation. "And he that sitteth on the throne said . . . I am the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end."

Its Numerical Value
Every Hebrew letter also has a numerical value. Instead of using numbers as we do (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, etc.), the Jews use the letters of the Hebrew alphabet.
The numerical value of aleph is 1, but a single element that can grow into a multitude. When two dots are placed above aleph it becomes a thousand instead of one. In that form, the word is sometimes translated "family" (see Num. 1:16; 10:4; Jud. 6:15; "kine" in Deu. 7:13; 28:4, 51).
The significance of this letter is that of the beginning: whether the number 1, or 1,000 which begins the principle of the millennium. The number draws attention to the Lord Jesus Christ. He is the first, the "head," the number " 1 " who becomes a family, developing into a multitudinous seed (Isa. 53:10).
In Heb. 13:11, the Lord is likened to the bullock that was slain for a sacrifice.
Thus, in a symbolic sense, aleph, the first letter of the divine language of Hebrew is an appropriate symbol for the Lord Jesus Christ, who is the "head of the house."

the Hebrew letter BETH ב

The letter above Psalm 119:9-16 commences the second section of the alphabet Psalm, and is the word Beth, or Bet which means house. It commences such words as Beth-lehem (meaning, The House of Bread). 

Actually, Beth is a contraction or abbreviation for the Hebrew word bayith בּיִת, meaning house, tent, etc. It is derived from a Hebrew root banah בָּנָה, to build — either a house or a family (and that is why sometimes "house" is used to describe "family" such as "the house of David"; see 1 Sam.20:16; 2Sam. 3:1, etc.). From the same root is derived the Hebrew word ben, a son (such as Ben-jamin, "Son of the Right Hand"), bath, a daughter (Bath-sheba, Daughter of an Oath) and eban, a stone. As the stones in a house form the building, so sons and daughters create a family.

This is very applicable to the Lord Jesus Christ, for every one of the letters of the Hebrew alphabet portray his great work in some relationship. As he is Aleph: the Chief, Leader or Burden Bearer (the ox-head), so he became the Beth or founder of the true house of David (2Sam. 7:11). Paul describes the Ecclesia as the "house of God" (1Tim. 3:16) "whose house are we" (Heb. 3:6). The Lord declared that he would ascend into heaven to obtain "abiding places" in that spiritual and eternal house for all of his true family (John 14:2). Jesus Christ is both the foundation stone (Eph. 2:20) and the headstone of this spiritual building (1Pet. 2:4-8, Zech. 4:7); he is both the commencement, and the glorious completion of the spiritual building of God (Eph. 2:21).

In Psalm 119, under the beth section (vv. 9-16) emphasis is given to the importance of dwelling within. Having walked along the pathway (vv. 1-8), the Psalmist now seeks to become the "house" of the Word: "Thy word have I hid [treasured; preserved] in my heart" (v. 11); it "dwells" therein.

Beth is a complete word used to identify a house, son, daughter, etc., but as a letter it is pronounced as we do the letter B.

Beit (pronounced to rhyme with the word "gate") is still the present day Arabic word for "house," Arabic being a living sister language of Hebrew.

Whilst beth means "house," "B" alone put in front of any Hebrew word means "in"; i.e., it gives the Hebrew word, so to speak, the "house idea" — to go inside the building. If we add to this "B" the feminine ending of ah, we get bah, which means "in her." 

Thus, Isaiah 62:4 declares that God will call His people "Hephzibah}} — i.e., Hephzi with the "i" at the end for "my" delight, and bah, "in her." If, instead of a long -ah for the feminine, we add to "b" the long "o" vowel, making the word bo, we get "in him." This is beautifully seen in the name Boaz, the redeemer of Ruth (Ruth 2:20), and in the name of the pillar in Solomon's temple: "he set up the left pillar, and called the name thereof Boaz" (1 Kings. 7:21; see margin: "In it is strength.").

Further, it is remarkable that the Bible actually commences with the letter

"B"; bereshith 
בְּרֵאשִׁית, signifying "in the beginning." Since the Hebrew lettter "b" is prefixed to the Hebrew word, it shows that the Old Testament actually begins with the letter that describes "inside the house," the "house" representing God's purpose to fill this earth with His glory (see Heb. 3:4).

Its Numerical Value
This letter doubles up the value of aleph, for beth is used to define the plural 2. In this way it strengthens the first! The "head" becomes a "house," and therefore reveals the number of multiplication, and of manifestation.

the Hebrew letter GIMEL ג

This strange-looking letter is pronounced like our "g" but reads as a word "gimel" (
Hebrew spelling: גִּימֶלThe letter is shaped in such a way as to roughly display the neck and head of a camel. Its name means camel, and its figure on the Phoenician monuments, and on the coins of the Maccabees, bears a resemblance to the neck of a camel. 

The Hebrew word gimel 
גִּימֶל, comes from the root word gamal גִּמֶל, signifying to recompense, reward, deal bountifully, do good. According to Gesenius, its form in Arabic signifies "to carry." Thus it has the idea of a helper, a burden bearer.

How appropriate it is to the Lord Jesus who "bore men's sorrows," and "went about doing good."

The camel is a desert carrier, bearing the burden placed upon him in spite of the sandy paths he is called upon to traverse; making best use of the water of the oases which he carefully stores for times when it is hard to obtain.

Every line in the Hebrew of Psalm 119:17-24 begins with a word which commences with the letter gimel. The word "bountifully" in v. 17 is from the Hebrew gamal, the root from whence gimel is derived. The Psalmist says that Yahweh is his helper, and the Lord Jesus is the divine representative to that end.

As the camel was considered unclean under the Law (Lev. 11:4), it may bewondered how the letter could have any application to Christ. But consider the Lord's humanity. He was born with the same unclean nature we all possess, and it is by virtue of his conquest of that nature, and his perfect obedience in spite of it, that he is able to help us now. Isaiah could write of him as the bearer of the sins of his people in his own nature, "Surely he hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows" (Isa. 53:4). Peter taught: "His own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins should live unto righteousness; by whose stripes ye were healed" (IPet. 2:24). Here again, Christ is likened to the camel: unclean in nature, but perfect in character, and bearing the burden of humanity that they may be freed therefrom.

Its Numerical Value
Gimel has the value of 3, the number of the resurrection and of redemption.
Thus, out of the sparseness and impotence of the desert, the camel represents life and strength, and depicts in a figure the resurrection to life out of the sterility of the grave.
So, not only does the oxhead [1] lead to the house [2], but it continues on to the new life [3] of revival

the Hebrew letter Daleth ד

This word (
Daleth Hebrew spelling: דָּלֶת) signifies door, pronounced as "d." Notice that in shape it appears as the upright and lintel of a door. But, you may remark, one upright is missing!

That is true, because daleth does not signify a door slammed shut and unable to be opened; but rather a swinging door; one that will open at the touch. And the letter depicts that.

The word is rendered "door" in Exo. 21:6; and is used of the two-leaved doors of the temple, both in the past (1 Kings. 6:34) and the future (Eze. 41:24).

In the section of Psa. 119:25-32 which is headed Daleth, the Psalmist gives expression to the "open door" of his mind, as opened to receive instruction from Yahweh. He refers constantly to the "way of Thy precepts," "the way of Thy commandments" (vv. 29, 30, 32), which, of course, leads to the door of entrance into the kingdom.

Christ likened himself to the door of the fold through which his sheep must enter to be safe (John 10:7). Similar expressions are found in Acts 14:27; ICor. 16:9; 2Cor. 2:12; Rev. 3:8, 20, which all have application to the Lord. These verses point out that the Master opens a door of utterance for the preaching of the gospel; he opens the door of the heart; and reveals the entrance to positions of power and privilege of authority in the Age to come. Finally, he declared: "I have the keys of hell and of death" (Rev. 1:18). How privileged we are to be associated with Christ our door, and to realise that door is ready to swing open to receive us.

Its Numerical Value
This letter daleth has the value of 4, the number of Israel, emphasised in the four-square encampment of the tribes, by the four horns of the altar which stood in its midst, and the four corner towers of the temple of Ezekiel's prophecy. Hence it has relation to Israel in their spiritual worship of Yahweh.

The beginning [1], and the house [2], leading to new life [3] will result in obtaining the way into the [4] commonwealth of Israel (Eph. 2:12-13).

It was on the fourth day of creation that the heavenly bodies were brought into correct relationship to the earth; and in the fourth millennium of human history, the Word made flesh was revealed in the personage of the Lord Jesus Christ. So there are four gospels which depict the four aspects of his mission, and the Israelitish nature of the great hope the Master presented to mankind.

the Hebrew Letter (HE 5) ה

ה This is the fifth letter of the Hebrew alphabet, and is pronounced "hey." (
Hebrew spelling: הֵא) It is shaped like a window, and comes from a Hebrew root signifying "lo! see!" and thus figuratively relates to a window, or a lattice; something that reveals a new vista, or introduces light into a house. So the letter takes the alphabet of grace a further stage, for after entering a house through the open door, there is a window provided.

The window is the means of greater light, and allows the fresh air of the atmosphere to permeate the house. In that regard, the letter represents Christ, as the means of illumination. He declared: "I am the light of the world; he that folioweth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life" (John 8:12). He is like the window in the house of God, the Ecclesia (Heb. 3:6), giving access to the atmosphere of Truth, and the sweet breath of refreshing (cp. Acts 3:19).

As the fifth letter of the Hebrew alphabet, it is the number of grace. When God changed Abram's name to Abraham, and Sarai name to Sarah. He add a single letter; the fifth letter he ה to both names. It revealed an act of grace, and therefore it was appropriate that the fifth letter should be used. It changed Abram's name from Exalted Father to Father of a Multitude, and Sarai's name from My Princess (as exclusive to Abraham) to Princess (a name widened to embrace the multitude of the faithful of which Abraham is the father). It opened Abraham's vista to a wider vision; a vista that takes in the Lord Jesus Christ, and his seed.

Its Numerical Value
This letter he has the value of 5, and thus depicts the principle of grace which is added to the foregoing values of 1-4. This number has a considerable significance in the Scriptures. David selected five smooth stones from the brook of Elah (ISam. 17:41); there are five books of the Law (Genesis to Deuteronomy). Such principles bring victory over the enemy of flesh, and strengthen faith through the wisdom of the Word. It is "by grace" that we are saved (Eph. 2:5, 8), and this element lifts us above the mundane things of life, revealing the wonderful principle of God manifestation in His people.

The number five is signified by the letter hei, which as a noun means "window." As man realizes his potential, he serves as a window by which less evolved men can see the Christ; he also serves as a channel or transparency through which the Christ can shed its light upon the earth. Thus man stands at a mid-point where he exercises dominion over lower creation, yet surrenders himself to the dominion of his Creator.
the Hebrew Alphabet (Wav 6) ו

This curious little letter looks like a hook or a nail. Wav, Waw, Vav (Hebrew spelling: וָו or וָאו or וָיו.). Wav is pronounced by some as a "v," and by others as a "w." It is copulative, joining ideas together, and so is often used as the English word "and," and as forming • • | Π part of other words. It is a very common letter, occurring over 15,000 times in the Old Testament. One figure of speech used to describe the Lord Jesus is that of a hook ("nail" as in Isa. 22:23). He is the support of those who believe in him; he will hold them up when they put their trust in him. The golden hooks of the tabernacle speak of V faith, which is the sustaining power of a spiritual life. 

Its plural form wavim is used to describe the hooks of the tabernacle (Exo. 26:32, 37; 27:10, 11, 17, etc.). These hooks of gold were used to hold the dividing veil between the holy and the most holy place, and there were also hooks of silver for the hanging of the curtains. These hooks are called wavim in the plural, and wav singular. The hooks of the tabernacle would have to be bent at both ends to be of service to God in His building of worship. They represent those who are prepared to "bend" themselves to become part of the divine glory.

The wavim, or hooks which carried the hanging of the court of the tabernacle were of silver, indicating redemption, and without being redeemed by the precious blood of Christ, we can never act as hooks, or be of use in his service.

It is also important to remember that the hooks which carried the dividing curtain between the holy place and the most holy, were made of gold, so that only a man of perfect faith could fill such a position. It was the curtain through which the Lord moved when he passed from mortality into immortality. Significantly, therefore, when he offered the perfect sacrifice required of the Son of God, and "when he had cried again with a loud voice, yielded up the spirit. And behold the veil of the temple was rent in twain from the top to the bottom; and the earth did quake, and the rocks were rent" (Mat. 27:50).

Its Numerical Value
This letter Wav has the value of 6, a number used to define the flesh, and in this case demonstrates that the flesh needs to seek the Truth as the means of restoration. The Lord Jesus came as "the Word made flesh" (Jn. 1:14), for he identified with his brethren, being encompassed with "the feeling of our infirmity" (Heb. 4:15). Such a weakness requires some support p), a strengthening, to overcome the condition of mortality. We find that support in the Master, who, coming in the likeness of sin's flesh, was able by the power of the Father in him, to overcome and to lead the way for his brethren to obtain the glory (Heb. 2:10).

the Hebrew Letter zayin ז

The letter Zayin is the seventh letter in the Hebrew alphabet. (Hebrew spelling: זַיִןmaavak mezuyan ("armed struggle") (מאבק מזוין), kokhot mezuyanim ("armed forces") (כוחות מזוינים), and beton mezuyan (בטון מזוין) ("armed, i.e., reinforced concrete").

The letter zayin represents a weapon, a sword, as a weapon of attack. The principle is seen in the Word of God as a sharp two-edged sword, living and active, penetrating to the motives of the heart, dividing | asunder that which is soulish and spiritual, and being a critic of its thoughts and intentions (Heb. 4:12).

Moreover the Word of God, which is the "sword of the spirit" (Eph. 6:17) is a title of the Lord Jesus Christ, the weapon that Yahweh used to destroy the diabolos (the devil), the 
indwelling sin in our nature (Heb. 2:14). He will yet use the Sword of the Spirit to bring all mankind into subjection to Himself.

This principle teaches the importance of acting as a "good soldier of Christ" in the warfare against Sin. It is the evidence of the enmity (Gen. 3:15) that exists between Righteousness and Wickedness — and in this contest the man and woman of God will wage a continuous battle.

The Victory that comes by the power of the Spirit-Word opens up the covenant of faith in which those of a spiritual mind will rejoice.

Its Numerical Value
This letter zain has the value of 7, the number of the covenant, and thus demonstrates that the divine covenant is established upon the basis of the divine warfare against sin. The knife was used to cut an animal in parts (Gen. 15:10), so that the contracting parties could meet in the midst of the divided animal. The covenant was declared between them, and it was acknowledged that the fate of the covenant victim would rest upon the party who might pervert the terms of the covenant. Thus it is appropriate that the letter zain should depict the knife of the covenant. It is the Word, the "sharp two-edged sword" (Heb. 4:12), which establishes the terms of the divine covenant between Yahweh and His people.

Additionally, the seven days of creation brought to a completion the original design of the Almighty. Therein was seen the perfection (represented in the number 7) of His plan and purpose, and it will be after the end of the seventh millennium that true and lasting harmony and unity will be achieved: when sin and death are completely removed and perfection in character and nature will be revealed.

the hebrew letter Ḥēth ח

Ḥet or H̱et (also spelled Khet, Kheth, Chet, Cheth, .Het, or Heth) is the eighth letter of the hebrew Alphabet 

Ḥēth Hebrew spelling: חֵית

The eighth letter in the Hebrew alphabet. This letter is the harshest of the guttural sounds and is similar to the sound of “ch,” as in the Scottish word loch or the German ach. In the Hebrew, in the eighth section of Psalm 119 (vss 57-64) every verse begins with this letter.

Τhis letter looks like a fence, or a hedge around a paddock, with one part open as an entrance. Ḥēth means a fence or hedge, and the word is derived from a root signifying to surround; to gird. Such a hedge or fence marks off the garden or private plot for the pleasure of its owner, and thus appropriately suggests a closeness, or intimacy with the property. This is also illustrated in the name of the place called Hebron which is actually | Chebrown in the Hebrew (Gen. 13:18), and means "fellowship," or "communion." The ch is a strengthened "he."

The word beautifully illustrates the shepherd feature of the Lord Jesus Christ, whose ministry has established a safe abode for those who are his flock. He came to redeem Israel, who were suffering from attacks by spiritual wolves, and hirelings who cared little for the flock of God. In addition he stated: "Other sheep I have, which are not of this fold, them also I must bring, and they shall hear my voice; and there shall be one fold, and one shepherd" (John 10:16). A fold is an enclosure. Therefore, as part of the Alphabet of Grace, Ḥēth points to the Lord Jesus as the protective fence or enclosure behind which the flock must shelter to be safe from attack. 

The apostle Paul saw the developing danger of enemy animals in his day. To the ecclesia at Ephesus, he declared: "After my departing, shall grievous wolves enter in, not sparing the flock..." (Acts 20:29). Ḥēth is pronounced kh like a guttural noise from the back of the throat. Many English-speaking people, when they see anglicized Hebrew words commencing with Ḥēth wrongly pronounce it "ch." For example, the word "cherubim" should more correctly be pronounced as "kerubim." Similarly, the name of Israel's first president, Chaim Weizman, is really pronounced like a hard kh. Chaim means "life-
Its Numerical Value
Ḥēth has the value of 8, and relates to the fulness of things, the new world order beyond the work of bringing mankind to the divine covenant as seen in the number 7. The Lord Jesus rose on the eighth day (which was also the "first day of the week," having triumphed over sin and death in himself (Heb. 2:14), and revealed the glory that will grace this earth in the eighth millennium. Indeed, the eighth millennium (called by the apostle Paul "the third heaven" in 2Cor. 12:2) will see the conclusion of the present purpose of Deity with this earth, when sin and death are removed, and the flock of Yahweh will all have been redeemed.
the Hebrew Letter Teth ט

The Hebrew spelling of name of the letter: טֵית

ט Teth is a serpent. Note its curious shape, curled up like a serpent on a rock! It is significant that it forms part of the divine alphabet, and therefore relates to the Lord Jesus Christ. In the purpose of Yahweh, His Son inherited the serpent-nature common to us all, derived because of the transgression of Adam in the beginning, which is the cause of sin and death (Rom. 6:23; Heb. 2:14).

The Lord Jesus was involved in the misfortune that has come upon all mankind, for God "made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin" (2Cor. 5:21), that he might identify wit his brethren, and become the means of their redemption from the condemnation common to all mankind. The word teth (
טֵית) is pronounced like a "t." In the section of Psalm 119 which is headed by this Hebrew consonant (vv. 65-72), the inherent goodness of God is emphasised in contrast to the evil of human nature. When a young man approached the Lord Jesus, and addressed him as "Good Master," the Lord replied: "Why callest thou me good? there is none good but One, that is, God" (Mat. 19:17). The Lord was "good" as far as his character is concerned, but his nature was the same as that of all others. He gained the victory over the flesh through the strength he derived from his heavenly Father (Rom. 8:3).

Its Numerical Value
The numerical value of teth is 9. In Biblical numerology (the symbolical application of numbers) teth is the number of Judgment (one less than the number 10 representing salvation); very significant in view of its meaning, for the serpent power must come under divine judgment!

In his death, the Lord Jesus destroyed "him that had the power of death, that is the diabolos" (Heb. 2:14), the serpent power of the flesh. Having destroyed it in himself, he provides the means by which those "in him" can similarly be redeemed from the flesh. In so doing we uphold the divine judgment against the "sin which doth so easily beset us" (Heb. 12:1).

the Hebrew Letter Yod י

Yod (Hebrew spelling: יוֹדYod is a small letter, rather like an inverted comma. It is often seen but not heard; for generally, it is not even pronounced! The word signifies an open hand — that is, a hand indicative of action, and therefore representative of power, or the means of direction. The word yod, must be distinguished from the next letter: kaph כ, which signifies the closed hand (Psa. 119:145-152). Yod appears in Psalm 119 at the top of verse 73. Its meaning is demonstrated in the first verse of this section: 'Thy hands [yod] have made me and fashioned me: Give me understanding, that I may learn Thy commandments."

Notice that in this verse the hands provide the idea of creative power and purpose. And again, the meaning of the letter points forward to the Lord Jesus, as expressed in Isa 53:10, "Yet it pleased Yahweh to bruise him; he shall see his seed, he shall prolong his days, and the pleasure of Yahweh shall prosper in his hand/' The word for "hand" is yod, which is frequently so translated in the Bible. Following his atoning sacrifice, all power was delivered into the hands of the Master, in order for him to become "our great high priest," and to control the destiny of his people (see Mat. 28:18).

Its Numerical Value
The numerical value of yod is 10, the number of salvation. As 10 is the completion of the digital arrangement of mathematics, and the number 11 commences the new series, so the number 10 reveals the result of the work of God to redeem His creation from the experiences of the past. It is also a number signifying the hands (ten fingers) or feet (ten toes), that speak of the "work of salvation."

The number "ten" is often used of a complete, indefinite number, such as "David has slain his ten thousands..." signifying a large, indefinite number. Similarly, the "hand" of the Master will bestow power and authority upon the "ten thousand times ten thousands" of his saints when they are brought to perfection in the Kingdom Age.

the Hebrew Letter kaph כ

Look at the letter kaph (
Hebrew spelling: כַּף), then make the shape of it with your thumb and forefinger. You will notice that your hand is bent over, and curved. That is what kaph means: the bent hand or palm of the hand. The word is derived from kaphaph signifying to curve, and relates to the hollow of the curved hand.

Consider now: when do you curve your hand?

Obviously when you catch hold of something. For example, when you make ready to open a door you stretch out your hand and you begin to curve it to grasp the handle by which the door may be opened! Kaph, the curved hand, therefore represents the hand ready to take hold of something to help. How appropriate to the Lord Jesus, whom all the letters of the Hebrew alphabet foreshadow in some way or other! We read of him that: "verily, he took not on him the nature of angels; but he took on him the seed of Abraham" (Heb. 2:16). 

The Greek word translated "took" implies, to take by the hand so as to help. Jesus Christ did not help angels to salvation, since there was no need for that (the words in italics in Heb. 2:16 should be eliminated; they are merely the translators' indication that there are no comparable words in the original text), but the Lord has extended his hand to help us mortals to find salvation.

A similar expression is found in Heb. 8:9, "I took them by the hand to lead them out of the land of Egypt."

Zechariah predicts that the Jewish people will accept the Lord Jesus as Messiah, after they have viewed the wounds in his hands as he extends them for inspection (Zech. 12:10; 13:6). They will look at that curved hand, ready to help Israel in its extremity, to redeem them from the oppression of Gentile powers, and therefore will come to see in the wounds of his hands the very means by which their national salvation was achieved.

The plural form kapoth is rendered "branches of palm trees" in Lev. 23:40.

Israelites sheltered under the shade of these lovely trees, as they bent the boughs to cover them; and we, too, can shelter under the protection that the Lord Jesus affords us. The palm branches were among the boughs used in the Feast of Tabernacles that pointed forward to the future millennium. Thus, the glorious company of the Redeemed are pictured as rejoicing before the great King, clothed with white robes, and "palms in their hands" (Rev. 7:9). Each one of that glorious company would have taken hold of the curved hand of the Lord to help in their days of probation, and who now stand before him in order that his salvation might be revealed in them.

The use of both yod, and kaph are exhibited together in Exo. 4:4. Moses is told to put forth his hand, and take the serpent by the tail. He did so, "and it became a rod in his hand." The first word rendered "hand" is yod; the second word is kaph. Picture the scene. Moses put forth his arm, and guided his open hand [yod] towards the serpent, and then grasped the serpent firmly, so that his hand [kaph] curved around the tail of the animal and it became a rod to be used by him in the contest against Pharaoh. The difference is not apparent in the English version which uses the same word, but is evident in the Hebrew with the combined use of yod and kaph.

Again, kaph is used in Exo. 33:22-23 when describing how the angel of Yahweh covered Moses in the cleft of the rock, with His hand so that he would not look directly upon the divine glory manifested. The glory was too brilliant for mortal man, and Moses was taught that principle in this little episode. Obviously, the hand of the angel would curve around the eyes of Moses, and therefore the word kaph was used, and not yod. Try it for yourself. Place your open hand straight over your eyes. It does not blot out the light; you can look to the left or to the right and see light. But curve your hand around your eyes, and all light is blotted out. Exo. 33:22-23 could be rendered, "I will cover thee with My curved hand..."

Again, 2Chr. 30:6 speaks of Israelites "that escaped out of the hand of the kings of Assyria." The word is also kaph, and signifies the curved hand. In this case, the "hand" of Assyria had caught hold of the prisoners and refused to let them go, but a remnant had escaped from their grasp. In this case, therefore, kaph symbolizes power, the hand in action, and not merely the guiding hand as in the case with yod.

You can have great pleasure going through the Bible with an Analytical Concordance, and discerning the difference in the use of these two associated words yod and kaph.

One final item with this interesting little letter! When it appears at the end of a word, it changes its shape, and becomes, like this: "|. It is not known why this is, but originally, all the Hebrew words were joined together, so perhaps the last letter was changed to distinguish one word from another. However, this does not always apply, and not all letters change if used at the end of a word. Another suggestion is in the meaning of the letter, that when a curved hand has completed its work, it changes shape. But, again, this seems to be a rather simplistic solution.

Its Numerical Value
After having identified the simple digits from 1-10, the numerical value of the following letters of Hebrew alphabet increases by ten. This letter kaph has the value of 20. It is composed of 2 χ 10: the number of division multiplied by the number of completeness. Thus it emphasises the development of the work of the Truth in calling out a people for the Name of Yahweh, and perfecting that work.

the Hebrew Letter LAMED ל

Τhis letter 
ל, called lamed (Hebrew spelling: לָמֶד), represents an ox-goad, and actually the old Hebrew form of the letter looks more like an ox-goad (a stick with a hook or prick) than does the present one. The word means "to goad," and by implication, to "teach," the rod being used in ancient times as an incentive for learning and discipline, to develop the student in his skills.

The goad was also part of the shepherd's rod, which had a pointed end as well as a curved hook. With the curved hook the shepherd would lift up an animal caught in a crevasse, or pull it back onto the path if it strayed into danger. But with the pointed end he could prod a stubborn animal, and direct it along the correct path.

LAMED - this letter appears to carry the idea of teaching associated with prodding or goading as used to train an animal. It is associated with learning Deut 14:23, teaching and guidance Psa 25:9, learning with chastisement Psa 94:12.

The word is rendered "expert" in Song 3:8. The associates of King Solomon (who, in this book of the Bible, types the Lord Jesus Christ) were all "expert in war," because they had been disciplined and trained to know what they had to do. Of course, the warfare in which the associates of the Lord Jesus are particularly skilled, is the warfare of faith, to which Paul alludes in Eph. 6:10-17, by which principles we are able to direct our lives along the correct pathway and to avoid the contamination of an evil world.

Again the word lamed is translated "instruct" in Song 8:2, where the Bride, representing the Bride of Christ (Rev. 19:8), declares that her "mother would instruct" her; she would be prodded by the teaching of her mother. Who is the "mother" of the Bride of Christ? Paul declares that "Jerusalem which is above [i.e., the covenants of promise, creating faith, and portraying the Truth] is the mother of us all" (Gal. 4:26). These covenants of faith and the example of diligent men and women associated therewith, are as goads, teaching us and prodding us into action.

The word has been translated frequently "teach" as in Psa 25:4-5, "Shew me Thy ways, Ο Yahweh; teach me Thy paths. Lead me in Thy truth, and teach me: for Thou art the God of my salvation; on Thee do I wait all the day." See also Psa. 119:12,33.

Judges 3:31 records that Shamgar slew six hundred Philistines with an oxgoad and so "delivered Israel." In this verse the word "goad" is from the Hebrew malmad, which is directly derived from lamed, and indicates the way in which the discipline of the courageous Shamgar brought salvation to the nation.

As Saul of Tarsus pursued his course of persecution against the believers in the days of the apostles, he was on the road to Damascus when he was halted by a brilliant light, and heard a heavenly voice: "Saul, Saul, why persecutest thou me? it is hard for thee to kick against the pricks" (Acts 26:14). The RV more accurately renders the word "pricks" as "goads," for the record significantly states: "saying in the Hebrew tongue." Therefore Saul (later to be known as the apostle Paul) would have heard the voice declaring "it is hard for thee to kick against the lamedim, goads." Saul had been pursuing a course that brought him only concern and constant anguish. The circumstances of his life were pursuing him with as much diligence as he pursued the Christian believers, and causing him much frustration. Only when he recognised the influence of the lamed of Jesus Christ, the great shepherd, was he able to pursue the true and faithful course of life.

The Word of the Master is the goad that urges us along the path towards the kingdom of God. Paul learned that lesson, and came to appreciate that the events of his life, with all their pin-pricking frustrations, were as the jabbing of an oxgoad urging him along the true course that he should take.

The idea seems expressed by the Lord Jesus in Hebrew (note an indication that in immortality this is the language he has used) Acts 26:14 "I heard a voice saying in the Hebrew tongue, Saul, Saul, why persecutest thou me? it is hard for thee to kick against the pricks." (RV renders as 'goads'; Weymouth 'ox-goad'; Bullinger 'goads' etc)
Here we observe an application to the Lord whose teachings have the affect of 'prodding' us to turn from our own thinking and stubbornness to His ways and teachings.

Its Numerical Value
The letter lamed has the value of 30. This number depicts the sum of 3 χ 10, and demonstrates the multiplication of the principle of resurrection: the new life developed in a community. It is remarkable that the sons of Kohath were to be numbered "from thirty years old and upward" for the service of the tabernacle, being "goaded" into divine activity on behalf of the nation (Num. 4:3).

Appropriately, the Lord Jesus commenced his public ministry when he "began to be about thirty years of age" (Luke 3:23). He was numbered and singled out for the most wonderful service ever rendered by a person at any time, a work that began at his baptism in Jordan, and concluded in his atoning sacrifice on the stake of Golgotha.

the Hebrew Letter mem מ,ם

The thirteenth letter of the Hebrew Alphabet is mem 
מ,ם (Hebrew spelling: מֵם), which signifies "water," however, the scriptures only use the plural form of the word, mayim. If you exercise your imagination a little, you can see the waves shaped in the letter mem. In fact, the letter "m" in our language developed from the mem of Hebrew, and again, with imagination you can see the waves of the sea in the form of our "m."

This letter has an extremely important spiritual significance, and again the Hebrew alphabet demonstrates a fundamental principle of the path to salvation. When God separated the waters in the very beginning of creation (Gen. 1:6), He taught the need to separate from earthly matters and seek the higher principles of His way (Isa. 55:9). It is through water, in baptism, that we become joined to the Lord Jesus, and he covers us (Gal. 3:26-28); it is through the refreshing, life-giving Truth we receive through him, that we are sustained in our walk toward the kingdom of God.

The singular form of mem never occurs in scripture, except as part of a proper noun, but the plural form mayim does frequently. There are also related words.

For example, matar signifies "to rain."

Consequently mem is used in relation to many things; some to sustain, and some to rebuke. God rained fire, brimstone, and hail; and to sustain, He rained dew and manna on the earth. Similarly, Christ can be a saviour, or a destroyer. Paul wrote: "We are unto God a sweet savour of Christ, in them that are saved and in them that perish. To the one we are the savour of death unto death; and to the other the savour of life unto life" (2Cor. 2:15-16).

Consider God's use of rain. The waters of the heaven above and the depths beneath destroyed life upon the earth in the days of Noah, but those very same waters bore up the ark to save him and his family (IPet. 3:20). Similarly, the waters of baptism destroy the power of King Sin, and assist to life eternal. It puts us into covenant relationship with God in hope of the divine nature (2Pet. 1:4).

In Psalm 1:3, the righteous person is likened to a tree planted by "the rivers of water" [mayim] that "bringeth forth fruit." The Lord declared "Except a manbe born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God"(John 3:5). Further, "Whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shallnever thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of waterspringing up into everlasting life" (John 4:14). "He that believeth on me, as thescripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water" (John 7:38).

Truly the Lord Jesus is as the well of living water, by whose refreshing truths we find sustenance through the deserts of life. Israel was saved from the wrath of Pharaoh by the waters of the Red Sea. On the other side of the turbulent waters, the people, led by their redeemer, Moses, sang the Song of Deliverance (Exo. 15). Miriam, Moses' sister, led the women of Israel in their rejoicing before Yahweh, and in singing the refrain of Moses' song, so that all the company joined in the grand chorus of release (vv. 20-21).

Miriam's name is significant. Some say it means bitterness or rebellion, but others derive it from mar, "a drop" (as in Isa. 40:15), and yam, "the sea." As such she represents those saved from the Red Sea, and those taken out of the sea of nations (Isa. 57:20; cp Acts 15:14). As she led the refrain of the women of Israel on the other side of the sea, she represents the Bride of Christ, symbolised as a cloud (Rev. 1:7) and as a rainbow (Rev. 4:3). In the Age to come, that cloud of witnesses (Heb. 12:1) will "drop down rain" in dispensing the teachings of Christ (Deu. 32:2) and in doing so, will "come down as rain upon the mown grass" (Psa. 72:6), reviving the nations after Armageddon (Isa. 2:2-4).

Its Numerical Value
The numerical value of mem is 40, the number of probation. Noah waited in the ark for forty days before opening the window of the ark (Gen. 8:6). Moses waited for the "words of the covenant" for forty days and nights (Exo. 34:28) and lived for 120 years (3 divisions of 40 years each). Israel struggled through the wilderness for 40 years, condemned to wander because of their unfaithfulness at Kadesh Barnea (Num. 14:33). The Lord Jesus was led of the Spirit into the wilderness of temptation for forty days (Mk. 1:13).

The number is significant, as it depicts the time of dependency upon the power of Yahweh, and represents the trial of the saints as they await the day of ultimate glory and redemption.

the Hebrew Letter NUN

The next letter of the Hebrew alphabet appropriately follows mem, and illustrates the vastness of the waters. This one is nun, and signifies the fish that dwell in the seas. The original form of the letter suggested the shape of a fish; and even the modern letter recalls the appearance of a fish with its tail bent inward.

In Scripture the fish is noted for its ability to propagate, and the root meaning of nun is to re-sprout; to propagate; to be perpetual, emphasising the principle of continuance. Non, or Nuwn was the name of Joshua's father (IChr. 7:27).

The word is used in connection with the Lord Jesus Christ, for in Psa. 72:17 David declared of his glorious Son, "His name shall be continued as long as the sun." Here, the word "continued" is nuwn.

Pro. 29:21 refers to a servant who is carefully trained from childhood to ultimately become a son. The word for son is not ben, as normally used, but manuwn, derived from nuwn, or, nun, signifying "continuator." Thus, the servant becomes a son to continue on the name of the father of the household, in a prolific seed. Both the ideas of the prolific harvest offish, and the continuing of a dynasty are contained in this principle. It illustrates David's comment in relation to Christ, found in Psa. 72:17 quoted above. It also relates to the prophecy of Isaiah 53: ΙΟ- Ι 1 concerning the suffering servant, who was elevated to become the Son of Yahweh's right hand: "He shall see his seed, he shall prolong his days, and the pleasure of Yahweh shall prosper in his hand. He shall see of the travail of his soul, and shall be satisfied: by his knowledge shall My righteous servant justify many; for he shall bear their iniquities. Therefore will I divide him a portion with the great, and he shall divide the spoil with the strong; because he hath poured out his soul unto death."

The fish is not only noted for being prolific, but also for its determination and strength in battling against the stream. A dead fish will float with the current, but a living fish will strive against it, and develop itself in so doing. How like the Lord Jesus Christ, in his striving against sin! He endured Golgotha, and despised the shame; he endured the contradiction of sinners against himself, and encourages others to do likewise. He refused to conform to the ways about him, and revealed a courageous example as he "set his face to go to Jerusalem" (Luke 9:51). Although it was typically swimming against the stream, he was strengthened by so doing, and provided the means for others to follow his standard.

In all those ways, as well as in his ability to propagate the seed of the righteous, the Lord manifested the qualities of the tenacious fish.

In the first century the fish was commonly used as a symbol of Christ and his believers, probably because the birth to the new life is through baptism, but also because the Greek word for "fish," ichthus, is an acrostic of the initials of the five words lesous Christos Theos Huios Soter, "Jesus Christ Son of God, Saviour."

Therefore in a remarkable manner, the Hebrew alphabet sets forth a hidden prophecy of things concerning the Lord Jesus Christ.

The letter nun is found on top of the section commencing Psalm 119:105. In that stanza the Psalmist, foreshadowing Christ, declares: 'The wicked have laid a snare for me; Yet I erred not from Thy precepts" (v. 110). The word "snare" is the Hebrew pac from pacach, to spread a net, and therefore is appropriate to the letter nun (which signifies fish) that, in the Hebrew, commences every line of this section of the Psalm. The net is the means of gathering together the fish of its haul. The fulfilment of this verse is found in the Lord Jesus Christ, and those "fish" that the gospel net has drawn unto him (see Mat. 13:47-48; Jn. 21:11).

Its Numerical Value
This letter nun has the numerical value of 50, made up of 5 χ 10; thus the number of grace [5] extended to a multitude, for 10 signifies a large, undisclosed number of the saved, a "great multitude which no man could number" (Rev. 7:9). It suggests the swarming fish in the sea of life, and points forward to those who will experience the grace of Yahweh through the ministrations of His Servant- Son, in passing through the waters of baptism. The significance of the Hebrew letter illustrates this very point.

The letter nun also suggests the Jubilee law: the 50th year of Release and Liberty (Lev. 25:10). The Jubilee points forward to the glorious liberty found in Christ Jesus (Gal. 5:1), and beyond, to the millennial joy when liberty from sin and death will be the happy lot of those who have remained within the net of the Lord's spiritual harvest.

the Hebrew Letter 15

Samekh is pronounced as we would pronounce "c" in  "cymbal;" something like an "s" but a little sharper and crisper.

The Hebrew has another letter called schin which is pronounced either "sh" or "s" depending on where a dot is placed above the letter. The distinction between samekh and its companion letter schin is evident in the incident recorded in Judges 12:6. 
The Ephraimites had attacked Jephthah and were defeated. They endeavoured to escape capture by claiming that they were not Ephraimites. But the men of Gilead put them to the test. They called upon those whom they captured to say "shibboleth," but instead, because oftheir accent, the men of Ephraim pronounced it "sibboleth," ι and instantly the Gileadites knew that they were of 1 Ephraim. Shibboleth is spelt with a schin ש, whereas sibboleth is spelt with samekh ס. In this instance, samekh was no help to the liars of Ephraim, but it was a guide and support to the men of Jephthah!

You will find the letter samekh above Psalm 119:113. Each line of vv. 1 Π- Ι 20 in the Hebrew commences with different words, yet all begin with this letter. Samekh means to "prop, support or rest." It appears in v. 116 as "uphold;" thus:

"Uphold me with Thy Word." In Exo. 29 it is rendered "put" in describing the manner in which the priests identified themselves with a sacrifice by putting their hands upon it (vv. 10, 15, 19). In Psa. 37:17 it is rendered "upholdeth," "Yahwehupholdeth the righteous" (cp. also v. 24 and Psa. 54:4). In Isa. 63:5 it is identified with the work of Christ: "I looked, and there was none to uphold." Other places where it is used significantly include Psa. 71:6; Isa. 48:2; Song 2:5; Isa. 26:3.

The letter depicts the work of the Lord Jesus as a prop, a support, and a stay for those who approach the Father through him. Believers rest upon him, and see in him the One who provides the foundation upon whom we can rest or lean with every confidence. Concerning the problems he faced, the apostle Paul wrote: "I can do all things through Christ, which strengthened me" (Phil. 4:13).

Its Numerical Value
The significant numerical value of this letter is 60. In Bible numerics 6 is the number of flesh, and 10 is the number of a large undisclosed multitude. Therefore, the number of flesh, shown in a great multitude, is reflected in this word, which means support. There is no true support unless it be seen in the Lord Jesus. Apart from him, flesh is grass (Isa. 40:6), and faces "vanity and vexation of spirit:" seen in the emptiness of life without the Truth (Ecc. 1:14; 2:11, 17, 26,etc.). All this points forward to those who will be redeemed from amongst mankind, and constitute a "great multitude, which no man could number, out of all nations and kindreds, and people and tongues" (Rev. 7:9). They are represented as praising the Lamb because of the help and support they received from him (cp vv. 14-17).

the Hebrew Letter 16


The sixteenth letter of the Hebrew alphabet is called ayin. The Greek vowel o´mi·kron (“o”) is derived from `ayin; however, the Hebrew letter is not a vowel but a consonant. It represents a peculiar guttural sound pronounced at the back of the throat and has no equivalent in English. It appears as the initial letter in each of the verses of Psalm 119:121-128, Hebrew text.

It is an interesting letter which can mean either eye, or, spring. In either case it points to the Lord Jesus Christ, the Word made flesh, whose eyes are constantly upon his followers, and who provides a fountain of living water for their eternal refreshment.

The letter ay in appears above verse 121 of Psa. 119. In verse 123, the Psalmist declares: "Mine eyes fail for Thy salvation." The Hebrew word for "eyes" is the plural form of ay in. Note that the letter takes the form of two eyes, connected together as though portraying the face. What the eyes see is conveyed to the brain, and frequently dictates the words spoken by the mouth. It is certainly significant that the next letter in the Hebrew alphabet actually signifies the mouth.

How is the letter ayin pronounced? It is not, or at least, most people do not pronounce it! In fact, it is a very difficult letter to pronounce for people who are not Jewish. In his concordance, J. Strong states: "The letter ayin, owing to the difficulty experienced by Occidentals [i.e., Europeans] in pronouncing it accurately [it is a deep guttural sound, like that made in gargling], is generally neglected [i.e., passed over silently], in reading..." This is significant, for it suggests that this letter, meaning eyes, is hidden away in words, so that, unless you are a member of the covenant nation, you pass it over unnoticed! Is it not the same with the eyes of Yahweh, or the water of the Christ-well? Do not Gentiles ignore the existence of such divine things, or are totally oblivious of them? Only those who clearly recognise the existence of God realize that His eyes are ever upon on them; only those who have been drawn close to the Lord Jesus Christ, can hear the bubbling of the water of the hidden well found only in him (Jn. 4:14).

It is remarkable that the word ayin can mean either eye ox fountain. It might seem strange that one Hebrew word should do duty for both, until we think it over. What does one obtain from a fountain? Water, naturally! What do the eyes do under deep emotional stress? They water, of course! So the eyes are the fountains of the body, while wells are the fountains of the earth. From the appearance of the eye, one can tell much of the character of a person, while fountain springs, bubbling up from deep in the earth, determine the quality and character of the land. The eyes can sparkle, like the waters of a fountain; the eyes can reveal depth of character, like the deep waters of a well. The eyes can reflect the image upon which they gaze, as does the water of a fountain to those who look therein.

An example of this is found in Gen. 16:7 where the word "fountain" is ayin.

The angel found Hagar in the desert by a "fountain of water." The fountain became Hagar's means of sustenance as she wandered homeless in the desert; it was the place at which the angel discovered her plight, and urged upon her to return and submit to her mistress. This symbolizes the power of Yahweh's Truth. A further example is found in Deu. 33:28, where Moses refers to "the fountain of Jacob upon a land of corn and wine." Jacob dug a fountain, or well, and was sustained by it. The Lord found refreshment by that well (John 4) which continues to supply water to people even today. This underground spring of water remained hidden, until it was brought to light by Jacob, and in the Age to come that fact will be revealed to all people. The water of Jacob's well symbolizes the gospel which Christ preached, as he testified to the woman at the well (Jn. 4:14).

In Num. 33:9, the "twelve fountains of water" in Elim (which means "Strong Ones"), and represented the hope of Israel, are given this name of ay in. Ayin suggests also the strength that comes only when eyes are open to the Truth and the Fountain of living waters is available to sustain. A fortress is useless unless the eyes of the watchman are open to all about him, and unless the people within have adequate water to sustain them in time of siege. That is the importance of the letter before us.

Whenever we see ayin displayed in Psalm 119, it reminds us of the silent eyes of Yahweh upon us, and of the hidden fountain of living waters that can sustain us whatever distresses the desert of life might bring.

Its Numerical Value
The numerical value of the letter is 70. This too, is a significant number, for 7 is the number of a covenant, and 10 is the number of a large undisclosed multitude, expressing the idea of completeness. Therefore, 70 can represent that "great multitude which no man could number, out of all nations, kindreds, people, and tongues," who shall "stand before the Lamb" in the future (Rev. 7:9). What has ayin to do with this great company? Everything! They are the people upon whom the "eyes of Yahweh" have been focussed from the very beginning of time (2Chr. 16:9), and who have drunk deeply from the well of living water, provided by the Lord (Jn. 4:14). In Revelation 7 these are the "sealed of God;" therefore His eyes are upon them, and they continue to drink from the "living fountains of waters" (v. 17). In consequence, "God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes."

the Hebrew Letter 17

How appropriate it is that the letter/?<?/z should follow the previous letter ay in in the Hebrew alphabet, for ^peh signifies mouth whereas ay in signifies eye; and both are closely related in nature. In spiritual matters they are even more closely connected. The Lord declared: 'Out of the abundance of the heart, the mouth speaketh" (Mat. 12:34). Therefore, what a persons "sees" — i.e., physically or mentally comprehends — he will speak about. And this letter describes a speaking mouth, not one closed and silent.

Observe its shape. It roughly represents an open mouth showing the tongue. When the tongue is active the mouth speaks. This word, rendered "mouth" appears in Psalm 119:131, three verses under the letter heading that section. Notice, too, that the mouth is open: "/ opened my mouth and panted'."

The word is frequently used throughout the Old Testament, including the following places: Job 23:4, 12; Psa. 8:2; 37:30; 63:5, and so on. In Gen. 29:2, 3,10 reference is made to the well's mouth. Imagine the wide open mouth of the well with its life-giving, refreshing water, as indicative of an open mouth with its tongue speaking words of life! The word is also rendered "edge" when used in relation to the edge of a sword as in Gen. 34:26; Deu. 13:15, etc. This suggests the wide mouth of the sword and its activity in operation. Heb. 4:12 declares: "The Word of God is quick and powerful and sharper than any two-edged sword..." Figuratively the sword has a mouth that speaks.

The most active part of the body is the tongue. It is constantly wagging — butmostly to the discredit of its possessor. James makes the point that the tongue is capable of great good and great evil. Unfortunately the tendency of the flesh is to use it for the latter more than the former (cp. Jas. 3:8-12). Therefore James concludes: "Who is a wise man and endued with knowledge among you? Let him show out of a good conversation his works with meekness of wisdom" (v. 13).

Originally the serpent had a mouth that spoke, but because it was used to discredit God and to cause transgression against His law by the first human pair, the ability of speech was taken from the animal. We now need to exercise care as to how we use our mouths, for this could govern our eternal future. Christ warned: "every idle word that men shall speak, they shall give account thereof in the day of judgment. For by thy words thou shalt be justified, and by thy words thou shalt be condemned" (Mat. 12:36-37).

It is interesting to examine Hebrew words, and build up a story around the letters used. For example, the word Joppa, which is the name of the seaside harbour from whence Jonah sought to sail, and to this place the apostle Peter ventured. The name Joppa is formed of three Hebrew letters, with peh 3 in the centre. The letters are yod \ peh 3, and wav 1. The first represents the pointing hand; the second, the speaking mouth; the third, the hook as the means of support. The word itself signifies Beautiful and this is significant, for from Joppa there sounded forth to the Gentiles the "beautiful" doctrine of grace by Peter. He "pointed to" the way of salvation to be found in the risen Christ, "speaking forth" the message of the Kingdom, by which was given to the Gentile Cornelius the "hook" upon which he was able to draw himself out of his previously hopeless state.

Its Numerical Value
The numerical value of the letter/?^ is 80. This is most significant as eighty is made up of 8 and 10. In Bible numerics 8 is the number of perfection, whilst 10 stands for a large undisclosed number. It was on the eighth day that the rite of circumcision was performed, teaching the Israelite that there should be a striving for perfection by denying the flesh. It will be in the eighth millennium that the purpose of God will be brought to completion and perfection by the entire removal of every element in relation to the age of sin and death. Then the "undisclosed number" of the Redeemed, known only to the Deity, will be revealed to all mankind in the joyful state of perfection.

Thus, when 8 and 10 are joined as with an open mouth in which the tongue can be seen protruding, it suggests the great multitude, brought to perfection by the gospel, busily engaged in the work of proclaiming it by example and expression!

The word peh is emphasised in Isaiah 59:21, "As for Me, this is My covenant with them, saith Yahweh: My spirit that is upon thee, and my words that I have put in thy mouth, shall not depart out of thy mouth, nor out of the mouth of thy seed, nor out of the mouth of thy seed's seed, saith Yahweh, from henceforth and for ever."

Paul sought the prayers of his brethren "that utterance may be given unto me, that I may open my mouth boldly; to make known the mystery of the gospel" (Eph. 6:19). Thus, the mouth must always be used to express the divine alphabet in the words of Truth that come from the Deity.

the Hebrew Letter 18 

The eighteenth letter of the Hebrew alphabet is given the name of tsade or tzaddi as found in the heading of the section in Psalm 119:137-144. When the letter occurs at the end of a word, its shape is changed, and it appears like this, with its tail straightened: f\ Davidson's Hebrew Grammar suggests (with a question mark!) that tzaddi signifies "fish-hook," perhaps identifying the word with the root tsuwd: "to lie in wait, to catch." Those who adopt this suggestion, see in the shape of the letter the form of a fish-hook, aligning this interpretation with its appearance.

Others, however, draw its meaning from the root tzadaq, "to make right, to justify." The Hebrew tsaddiyq, translated "righteous," is derived from this root. Significantly, this word commences the stanza in Psalm 119:137, under the heading of this letter, which gives preference for identifying it with the principle of "righteousness," rather than "fishhook." In any case both meanings apply to Christ, the "Word of God made flesh." He is represented as a fisher of men (Mark 1:17), drawing out of the sea of nations a "people for His name" (Acts 15:14). 

On the other hand, he is given the title of Yahweh Tzidkenu: "Yahweh our Righteousness" (Jer. 23:6). Paul states: "Of Him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption" (ICor. 1:30). These are the four essential steps to salvation. First comes "wisdom," for we must learn the Truth. Second comes "righteousness," for we must be justified by the forgiveness of sins through baptism. Third comes "sanctification," the manifestation of separateness from sin in action through following the ways of Christ. Finally there comes "redemption," the change to immortality at the return of Christ.
Comparison with Other Languages
The Hebrew term tsadaq which many identify with the letter we are considering, denotes that which is perfectly straight, a straight line drawn from one point to another. Its equivalent in cultural Greek is δικέ dike, and in legal Latin is jus. Both speak of the principle of righteousness, but from different viewpoints; neither is as profound or expressive as the Hebrew root word. The Greek dike signifies "to divide equally, apportioning to each one his due." It therefore accounts what is right and just to the recipient. The Latin jus is from judeo and means that which is commanded; a response to a demand. However the Hebrew tsadaq signifies that which is direct, straight, uninterrupted; the quickest route to the desired end.

The ancient Latins were a warlike people, and their idea of righteousness was giving strict obedience to orders. The Greeks were a cultural people, and their idea of righteousness was to give everyone what was appropriate. But to the Hebrew, righteousness was a firmly established divine principle, the eternal distinction between right and wrong, as represented by the straight line of God's commandments and teaching. It was a straight connection to Yahweh, aiming at complete identification with Him; and the shortest route to eternal life!

On the other hand, the usual Hebrew word for "sin," in contrast to tzaddi is chata, which not only signifies "missing the mark," as an incorrect aiming of the arrow (see the use of this word translated "not miss" in Jdg. 20:16), but also swerving from this straight line, and thereby making the sinner's journey towards the goal and aim of his existence so much longer.

The root word conveying the Hebrew idea of righteousness is therefore much more expressive and deeper in meaning than in those other languages. Mere obedience to commands, or convenience concerning right and wrong, as expressed by these Gentile languages, is contrasted with straight access to God manifestation set forth in the Hebrew. To the Jew, of course, the attainment of righteousness was dependent on forgiveness of sins. To seek righteousness in the absence of justification will never lead us to God!

Another Suggested Meaning of the Letter
Some have traced the meaning of this eighteenth letter 2£ to the Hebrew word tzad. This word signifies "the side," and particularly the side of the mother where she carries her children. Speaking to Jerusalem, the prophet Isaiah visualised the time when "thy sons shall come from far, and thy daughters shall be nursed at thy side" (Isa. 60:4; see also 66:12). Those who relate the letter to this root see the shape of the letter 2£ as indicating the side with the arms extended to help and carry. They point out that the Hebrew word for "hosts" is tzavaoth, indicating "hosts for assistance." Paul quotes the words of Isa. 1:9, "Except Yahweh of Sabaoth had left us a seed, we had been as Sodoma and been made like unto Gomorrha" (Rom. 9:29). Through His hosts (see Josh. 5:14-15), Yahweh has frequently moved to the side of His people to help them. He has further done so in providing a greater Commander in the person of the Lord Jesus Christ (Isa. 55:4).

Select any one of these meanings for the letter tsade and it takes us to Christ our Righteousness, the Fisherman who has drawn us out of Gentile darkness, the Redeemer who has hastened to our side to sustain us in our helplessness, as well as providing the direct Route to divine acceptance. Thus, again, the Hebrew alphabet wonderfully focuses attention on the Lord Jesus Christ.

Its Numerical Value
As we have learned previously, the Hebrew consonants are also used as numerals and the numerical value of tzaddi is 90.

the Hebrew Letter 19

Τhe nineteenth letter of the Hebrew alphabet is given the name of koph, and appears at the head of Psalm 119:145-152. The Oxford Gesenius gives the meaning as "to go around." It forms the root of such words as nakaph which occurs in Lev. 19:27, "Ye shall not round the corners of your heads," which Gesenius renders as "Ye shall not go in circle (in shaving) the outer part of your head." It is rendered "round" in Josh. 6:3, and "compass" in 2 Kings. 11:8; 2Chr. 23:7; Psa. 17:9; 2 Kings. 6:14.

In his Lexicon, Davidson gives the meaning of this letter as "the eye of a needle," or "the back of the head." You can= see how the shape of the letter does suggest the back of the n e ad, the occiput or cranium, which encases the emotional P a r t o f t h e b r a i n ·

Certainly this letter is appropriate to the Lord Jesus, the"Word made flesh," for he constitutes the "brain" of the Multitudinous Christ. Hence Paul wrote: "Let this mind bein you, which was also in Christ Jesus" (Phi. 2:5). He told the Ephesians that Christ should be their head (Eph. 4:15), and warned the Colossians that they were committing spiritual suicide when they were "not holding the head" (Col. 2:19), by acting inconsistently with the "mind of Christ".

Because this was the spiritual state of the ecclesia in Colossae, they walked disjointedly, without proper balance, and without the mind that would provide them with proper spiritual equilibrium. Their koph was not operating properly! In contrast, Christ has a perfect mind, able to completely absorb the things of Yahweh during his first advent; he was in full accord with the mind of his Father, and perfectly manifested His wisdom. Of this the Lord declared: "I do nothing of myself; but as my Father hath taught me, I speak these things" (Jn. 8:28). In this way he was able to say that "I and my Father are one" (Jn. 10:30). Again, "all things that I have heard of my Father I have made known unto you" (Jn. 15:15).

Unfortunately, our minds are not quite as "balanced" as was his, and therefore we lack quality and control of thought such as he was able to manifest. 

The Most Marvellous Act of Creation: A Man with a Mind!
In the beginning, God made man in His "image and likeness," far superior to the animal creation, amongst whom Adam found not a "help to his face" (Gen.2:20) for which compatibility he sought. "Image" relates to shape; but "likeness" reflects capacity, the ability to understand and to mentally consider matters brought to attention. Unlike the beasts of the earth, Adam possessed a brain capable of absorbing divine ideas, and of reflecting them in action. Of all the works of creation, the human brain is the most marvellous; and perhaps the least understood. It consists of a mass of nerve material which not only works with great skill in regulating the various movements of the body, but determines those things which are called "the conscious personality," including all thoughts, feelings, desires and hopes.

Though man knows much about the human body, there are aspects of the brain that completely elude him. Specialists are still unable to completely understand how it actually works, and what results from the exercise of its capacity.

However, three distinct parts, each having particular work to perform, can be recognised. The large portion occupying all the upper and front two-thirds of the cranium, is called the cerebrum. Here, the will, thoughts, and feelings have their origin. Toward the back of the head, and below the cerebrum is the smaller section of the brain called the cerebellum, the duty of which is to control what are called "reflex actions." An illustration of these is seen in the ability to balance oneself when walking. This is done unconsciously, for one may be deep in thought about something else whilst walking along, and the cerebellum continues to monitor the path of the body correctly.

The third distinct portion of the brain is situated lower, more centrally, at the end of that great bundle of nerves called the spinal cord, which passes up through the body to the brain. This part -farcoiae is called the "bulb" or medulla oblongata, and its work consists of 00Ζ{ζ:"ιΤίη9' regulating the organs of the body which act as automatic operators working day and night without conscious effort by the person, even while asleep. The «ιίο™™* constant beating of the heart, the breathing of the lungs, the digesting of the stomach, and workings of the body of this kind, continue whether we are conscious or not. Spiritually, the "brain" of the Body of Christ continues to work notwithstanding whether the Body is active or "asleep;" thus the Lord declared: "My Father worketh hitherto, and I work" (Jn. 5:17). The mind of Christ maintains the functions of the Brotherhood continuously.

The back of the head also contains the visual centre of the brain, for the eyes are the only means whereby sight enters the body. Their images are forwarded to the brain, and are there interpreted, so that the correct picture is portrayed. This again is important, for what is seen by the spiritual "eyes" of each member of the Christ-Body will be imaged into the "brain" (the Lord Jesus), and determine the direction of life, for good or ill. So, "Whosoever therefore shall confess me before men, him will I confess also before my Father which is in heaven" (Mat. 10:32).

How important is the back of the head! How vital the letter koph p when applied to Christ in relationship to believers! He will give them proper balance; he will cause their spiritual reflexes to act consistently and properly along the pathway of life; he will give true vision and a correct perspective. This is why Paul emphatically and urgently exclaimed: "Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus" (Phil. 2:5).

Its Numerical Value
This letter koph has the value of 100, and thus brings to a conclusion the primal numerical system (refer to comments on yod, and the number 10). It represents the "century" of mankind's dominion; the control of the cranium, but also looks forward to the advent of a new Age: when all the redeemed will enjoy the "mind of Christ" (Phil. 2:5) in immortality.

the Hebrew Letter 20

The letter resh is found at the head of the twentieth stanza of Psalm 119, above v. 153. It is the name given to the twentieth letter of the Hebrew alphabet. With a little imagination we can see the shape of the back of a head in the form of the letter.

It is appropriate therefore, that resh signifies head, chief, or the sum [completion] of a matter. The word occurs frequently in the Bible, used both as a common and a proper noun.

The word resh is used in Eze. 38:2, where it is rendered as an adjective: "chief prince." Hebraists state that in this place, the grammatical construction of the verses strongly favours its use as a proper noun, and therefore should be rendered prince of Rosh, or, Russia.

The word has been translated "head" in Psa. 68:21; Hab. 3:13-14, and is there related to the "head of the wicked," the "serpent power" of the northern confederacy that is to be crushed by the stone power of Nebuchadnezzar's image (Dan. 2:44). It has also been translated "poison" (Job 20:16), "venom" (Deu. 32:33), and "gall" (Deu. 29:18; 32:32). It may appear strange that one word should do duty for all these various meanings, but a little thought will show that they are related.

First consider Job 20:16, "He shall suck the poison of asps." The word rosh is rendered poison in that relation because it was considered that the tongue of the snake or viper is poisonous, and therefore comes from the head, and is a direct result of the brain directing the body accordingly.

Deu. 29:18 refers to "a root bearing gall" [rosh]. Gall is a poisonous drug, probably derived from the poppy with its prominent flower-head from which is obtained opium. In this regard, the word is used in relation to heads of wickedness.

Note: We have seen that the word Beth means house now we come to the head of the "household of faith" (Galatians 6:10) in the letter resh. The word is used in the plural in Exodus 6:14,25 "heads of father's houses," for Christians we have only one head or one Lord (Ephesians 4:5; 5:23; Colossians 1:18

However, as we have seen, the words of the Hebrew alphabet point forward to the Lord Jesus Christ, the Word made flesh, and therefore he must be associated with sin and wickedness in some way. Being born of humankind he inherited the condition of nature that he shares with his fellows, a condition described as "sin's flesh" (Rom. 8:3), by which he was able to "bare our griefs, and carry our sorrows" so that "with his stripes we are healed" (Isa. 53:3-5).

Note: It is left to Christ to crush the former on the head, and destroy forever the influence of the latter, as revealed in the book of Revelation. The first conquest was personal, as Christ destroyed the diabolos sin-power within himself (Heb. 2:14); the latter represents the conquest of the nations to be accomplished at his return to earth (Isa. 60:12).

He is represented as the "head" of the multitudinous Body of Christ, (see ICor. 11:3; Eph. 1:22; 4:15; 5:23; Col. 1:18,2:19), and is thereby associated with those members who constitute his "Body." In a healthy body, the head controls the different parts, so that all continue in balance. So it should be in the ecclesia of Christ. Paul exhorted the brethren at Philippi: "Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus" (Phi. 2:5). He urged upon them to allow Christ to do their thinking for them, and to react to his instructions, as the natural body does to the directions it receives from the brain. How can we do that? Only by allowing Christ to "dwell in our hearts by faith" (Eph. 3:17). We might further ask, How can we do that? The answer is, "Faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the Word of God" (Rom. 10:17). 

To the extent that we allow the Word of God to dominate our minds, Christ will become the ruling influence of our lives. Christ as the Head is predicted in Psalm 118:22; "The stone which the builders refused is become the head [resh] of the corner." The Hebrew resh is also found in Psalm 18:43 where Christ the King (cp. v. 50) is represented as saying, "Thou hast made me the head of the nations."


The Letter in Psalm 119 

Resh is found in the stanza of Psalm 119:160 in the statement: "Thy Word is true from the beginning." The word "beginning" is resh, and in the Hebrew it appears at the commencement of the line, not at its end. Hence the R.V. has translated the line: "The sum of Thy Word is truth." The Psalmist, having summed up the experiences of life, and all the influences of Scripture, found that the grand total balanced all that the Word revealed; so that it is nothing but absolute Truth. That is why the Lord Jesus, as the "head of the body, the ecclesia" (Col. 1:18), declared: "I am the way, the truth, and the life; no man cometh unto the Father, but by me" (John 14:6). We must view him as our head; therefore let our actions be governed by his teaching, and his mind will become ours, to our eternal salvation.
Its Numerical Value
This letter resh has the value of 200, a combination of development (2) and completion (100) — thus the principle of the "house" (beth, with the numerical value of 2), filled with the glorified redeemed. This will reveal the finality of the Davidic covenant of 2Samuel 7, and the grand promise that Yahweh will "build David an house" (v. 7), and thereby grant him an everlasting inheritance.
the Hebrew Letter 21

the twenty-first letter of the Hebrew alphabet is a quaint-looking character called sin or schin. From its appearance one might imagine that it is shaped to represent a harp. But no! Shin actually represents a tooth! It has the shape of a molar. Although that which it supposedly represents can twang like a harp, as when one has a toothache!

It can be pronounced either as "s" or "sh," depending upon where a small dot is placed above the left hand side or the right hand side of the letter (as tSor 2?). If you look up words that commence with this letter in Strong's Concordance, you will find that sometimes the dot is at the left of the letter (see No. 7795), when it is pronounced "s," and sometimes at the right of the letter (see No. 7798), when it should be read as "sh."

The name of the letter signifies "tooth," and you can observe three teeth-like forms in the letter itself. This suggests two significant meanings: [1] the serpent's bite, or [2] the purity and durability of ivory, from the tusks of the elephant, and from which objects of great value were fashioned (cp. 1 Kings. 10:18). Both meanings are applicable to Christ. He came in human nature, formed because of the "bite" of the serpent in Eden, and experienced that bite in submitting to death; but he also manifested perfect obedience, and so attained unto great authority in immortality and rulership (cp. Song 5:14; 7:4).

The singular form of the word is schin (tooth), and the plural, denoting teeth, is shenim (in Hebrew, the letters im at the end of a word indicates the plural form). The word is derived from a Hebrew root shanan meaning "sharp-pointed." Metaphorically, the word signifies either to sharpen the tongue, i.e., to use insulting words, or to teach diligently as in Deu. 6:7. The plural word shenabiym is derived from schen, and is rendered "ivory" (1 Kings. 10:18, 22; 22:39), a term prophetically applied to Christ in Psa. 45:8; Song 5:14; whilst shen is rendered "teeth" and applied to the Christ-Bride in Song 4:2; 6:6.

The term is used metaphorically of the serpent's bite in Mic. 3:5 and Zech. 9:7. Consider its use also in Psa. 35:16; 37:12; 57:4, and note how sharp and deadly is the serpent's bite there expressed.

But the serpent's bite will not always prevail. The time is coming when it will be said of the Lord: "Thou hast broken the teeth of the ungodly" (Psa. 3:7; 58:6). The letter appears at the head of the twenty-first stanza of Psa. 119:161-168, where every line of the stanza commences with a word beginning with this letter.

The first verse of this stanza reads:

Princes have persecuted me without a cause; 

But my heart standeth in awe of Thy Word.

How remarkably fitting is this verse, as illustrative of the twofold significance of the letter. The first line suggests the bitter bite of the serpent (teeth); the second line sets forth the basis of immortality (ivory). Combined, the lines speak of the conquest of sin by the Lord Jesus in himself, upon which the rest of the stanza discourses (vv. 162-168).

Whichever way we look at it, therefore, this letter points forward to Christ. If we treat it as the biting tooth, and apply it to the serpent's bite, we know that the Lord was related to such as bearer of sin's flesh (Rom. 8:3), the condemnation that has come upon us because of Adamic transgression. On the other hand, if we take it to signify the beauty of ivory, it depicts the symbol of righteousness and immortality, seen fulfilled in the Lord. In fact, one idea develops from the other. By his conquest over the serpent's influence (Gen. 3:15), he became the redeemer of his people, and will yet sit as king on the millennial throne of power and authority (Rev. 3:21).

Its Numerical Value
The numerical value of this letter is 300. The combination of 3x100, draws attention to the multiplication of the resurrection (the number 3), resulting in a company which "no man can number," all of them having come out of the "grave" of flesh, and having been redeemed, will stand forth in glory.

the Hebrew Letter Taw ת

ת Tawtav, or taf is the twenty-second and last of the 
Hebrew Alphabet. Hebrew spelling: תָו

The last letter of the Hebrew alphabet places Yahweh's sign or mark of ownership on the whole of His revelation. It fittingly draws attention to the completion of the Lord's work in a remarkable manner.

This final letter appears in Psa. 119:169. The left upright has a firm foundation, and is joined to the right part of the letter by a crossbar. Gesenius states that it denotes "a sign in the form of a cross branded on the thigh or neck of horses and camels, whence the name of the letter Taw, which is Phoenician, and on the coins of the Maccabees, has the form of a cross. From the Phoenicians, the Greeks and the Romans took both the name and form of the letter." Again he writes concerning the secondary meaning of the word: "sign, mark subscribed instead of a name to a bill of complaint: hence subscription (Job 31:35). It is stated that at the synod of Chalcedon and other synods principally in the East, even some of the bishops being unable to write, put the sign of a cross instead of their names, which is still often done by common people in legal proceedings. Thus in the infancy of the art of writing this could not fail of being the case, so as for the expression to be received into the usage of the language."

The idea of the word is to apply a mark or brand to an animal so as to distinguish the ownership; the animal bears the insignia of its master. Under the stanza headed Taw (Psa. 119:169-176) occur the following lines "I have gone astray like a lost sheep: seek thy servant; For I do not forget Thy commandments." Hence the Psalmist speaks of himself as having wandered away from the flock, and as having been considered "lost." But as he has scrupulously kept the commandments, he prays that the Shepherd of Israel would seek him and identify, or mark him, as His own.

In the days of his flesh, the Lord Jesus Christ was considered as one who was lost, for the people failed to perceive the divine mark, sign or Taw upon him. The prophet Isaiah declared: "he hath no form nor comeliness; and when we shall see him, there is no beauty that we should desire him" (Isa. 53:2). The people of Israel could not identify the mark upon him, for they failed to recognise the divine characteristics he manifested. Therefore, he called upon his disciples to spiritually discern it, declaring: "Labour not for the meat which perisheth but for that meat which endureth unto everlasting life, which the Son of Man shall give unto you: for him hath God the Father sealed" (Jn. 6:27). The stamp of divine authority was manifested by the Lord in his words, works, and character. They all demonstrated his divine origin, and therefore those in him are also sealed (2Cor. 1:22; Rev. 7:2-4). The glorious revelation of the future is of the Redeemed surrounding the Lamb on Mt. Zion, and identified by the mystical number of 144,000, with the Father's name inscribed in their foreheads. That will constitute the "mark," "sign," or Taw of their identification with the Father and the Son. It is appropriately the final word, as the appearance of the divine qualities in His people will constitute the final work in His people.

The word Taw is rendered "mark" in Eze. 9:4-6, "Yahweh said unto him. Go through the midst of the city, through the midst of Jerusalem, and set a mark upon the foreheads of the men that sigh and cry for all the abominations that be done in the midst thereof... Slay utterly old and young... but come not near any man upon whom is the mark..."

The mark was the note of absolute identification of the righteous in this time of national judgment, as the "seal of the Living God" inscribed upon the foreheads of the righteous in the future day of judgment, which will save them also.

In Job 31:35, the word is rendered desire: "Oh that one would hear me; Behold my desire is that the Almighty would answer me, And that mine adversary had written a book." Job's attitude of mind was his mark or token. Hence the R.V. renders this in parenthesis: "Here is my signature, let the Almighty answer me!"

The Cross: The Final Mark of Service
Significantly the Hebrew alphabet concludes with a word that can be identified with the stake of Golgotha, because it was the Lord's submission to the "death of the cross" that identifies him as the Redeemer of mankind, the One who, in consequence, has been "highly exalted" and "given a name which is above every name" (Phi. 2:5-9). This marked him off for the high destiny to which he is called.

Controversy has ensued concerning the shape of the cross, or stake, as some prefer to call it. Some light has been thrown on this by the discovery in 1968, of the first material evidence of a crucifixion in an ancient cemetery at Giv'at Ha- Mivtar, close to Jerusalem. A detailed anatomical study of the skeleton of a man crucified about the same time as Christ, showed that the victim was nailed to the cross in a sitting position, both his legs slung sideways, with the nail penetrating the sides of both feet just below the heel. The "difficult and unnatural posture" that the victim was forced to endure would increase the agony.

Whether the Lord was crucified in that way we do not know. However philological and literary evidence seems to point to a cross in the shape of a capital T, and archaeology gives some support to this. In any case, the stake upon which the Lord was suspended on Golgotha's hill, bore a superscription on its cross-member: "This is Jesus of Nazareth, the King of the Jews" (Jn. 19:19).

The remarkable and outstanding Hebrew alphabet terminates with a letter that implies the supreme sacrifice of the Lord, and the divine sealing which demonstrates his true identity, revealing him to be the Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the ending, of Yahweh's divine purpose, and the Alphabet of Grace.

Note:  Omega, o-me'-gå (Gk.)--the last; the end; the objective; the fulfillment; the consummation; perfection; restitution.

The last letter of the Greek alphabet, "I am the Alpha and the Omega, the first and the last, the beginning and the end" (Rev. 22:13).

Meta. The last, the end, or the fulfillment. Christ, being the Alpha and the Omega, the first and the last, the beginning and the end, signifies the allness of Truth- through Christ, the ideal creation of God, or Divine Mind, all things came into existence in the first place and all things will finally come to the Christ likeness, which is the goal of perfection toward which the whole creation is unfolding. Christ is the fulfillment of all good to everybody and to everything.

Its Numerical Value
Taw has the numerical value of 400. The basis of this number is in the Israelitish covenant (number 4) multiplied by 100. Thus it represents the final aspects of the "Hope of Israel" to be revealed in the Kingdom Age, when all mankind will be brought into unity with Almighty God, and the joy of Abraham will be fulfilled (John 8:56). It is appropriately the numerical value of the final letter in the Hebrew alphabet.

The Hebrew Alphabet Rhyme
The Ten Words

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