1 Now it came to pass in the thirtieth year, in the fourth month, in the fifth day of the month, as I was among the captives by the river of Chebar, that the heavens were opened, and I saw visions of God.
2 In the fifth day of the month, which was the fifth year of king Jehoiachin’s captivity,
In Old Testament times, a man’s wealth was measured by the size of his flocks and herds. Job was a rich man by these standards. Female donkeys are mentioned in this passage because they were more valuable than male donkeys. They milk produced by females was a valuable food substance.
Some interpreters hold that many of the biblical references to Leviathan (Job 41:1-34; Psa 74:14; 104:26; Isa 27:1), dragons (Ps 74:13; Isa 27:1; 51:9), and the behemoth (Job 40:14-24) preserve early memories of dinosaurs. Most, however, prefer to explain these great monsters in terms of large and terrifying animals known to man today.
First son born to a couple and required of newly married people was believed to represent the prime of human vigor (Gen 49:3; Ps 78:51). In memory of the death of Egypt’s firstborn and the preservation of the firstborn of Israel, all the firstborn of Israel, both of man and beast, belonged to Yahweh (Exod 13:2,15; cp. 12:12-16). This meant that the people of Israel attached unusual value to the eldest son and assigned special privileges and responsibilities to him.
In Bible times wine and other liquids were stored in containers made of animal skins (read Matthew 9:17). These skins would eventually become brittle and develop cracks, particularly when exposed to the smoke given off by fires that burned in the tents and primitive houses of that time.
These verses occur in the context of presenting a sacrificial animal as an offering to the Lord. The Israelites believed the blood of such an animal was sacred, since it carried the very essence of life itself. In a sense, the blood was the ransom price that atoned for their sins. It was to be drained from the animal and poured on the ground at the base of the altar.
Paul spent eighteen months in the city of Corinth (Acts 18:11), working with Priscilla and Aquila at their mutual trade of tentmaker to support himself. During this time they established a church in this thriving, paganistic city.
In the Old Testament, the object erected time and time again to communicate the presence and power of God was an altar. The altar could be a single rock or a loosely organized arrangement of large stones, so people were never far from an altar or could build one in a few moments. Nothing was more prominent as a biblical image for worship and allegiance to God than the altar. It is no exaggeration to say that the most visible sign of one’s devotion to the true God in the worship of the old covenant was the building of altars or traveling to them for acts of sacrifice or offering. Continue reading SIGNS AND SYMBOLS OF THE BIBLE (ALTAR)→