Cattle were primarily a measure or symbol of wealth in biblical times. They were both familiar and significant, good characteristics for symbolic use. Among his livestock, the wealthy Job had a thousand oxen (Job 1:3). Cattle not only provided meat, milk, leather, and other by-products, they were the main animal workforce in ancient agricultural societies. Oxen (castrated bulls) pulled plows as well as wagons. Continue reading SIGNS AND SYMBOLS OF THE BIBLE (BULL/CALF)→
Cherubim is plural for the Hebrews word cherub, or angel, In the Old Testament, cherubim were heavenly beings who served God. In the Garden of Eden, angels guarded the tree of life (Gen 3:24). Two cherubim made of gold decorated the top of the ark of the covenant, symbolizing a covering of atonement (Exod 25:18-22). Given that God cannot Continue reading WHAT ARE CHERUBIM?→
Piece of furniture for resting the feet, especially for one seated on a throne (2 Chron 9:18; James 2:3). The footstool of Tutankhamen of Egypt was carved with pictures of his enemies. Other Pharaohs were portrayed with their feet on their enemies’ heads. The footstool thus became a symbol for dominion. God is pictured as a king enthroned in heaven with the earth as His footstool (Isa 66:1; Matt 5:35). In Ps 99:5 and Lam 2:1 it is difficult to determine with certainty whether God’s footstool is the ark, the temple, or Zion (Isa 60:13, Ezek 43:7). Only 1 Chron 28:2 is an unambiguous reference to the ark as a resting place for God’s feet. Continue reading DEFINITION OF THE DAY “FOOTSTOOL”→
On its own, the ark was little more than an interesting piece of furniture. But the ark held the Ten Commandments and symbolized God’s presence. Any attempt to see power in the ark itself (as in the popular Indiana Jones films) is tantamount to idolatry. The people of Israel made this mistake frequently. They assumed that possession of such a powerful instrument as the ark gave them some control over God Himself, since God was obligated to guarantee the success of anyone (or any group of people) possessing it. Continue reading IF THE ARK OF THE COVENANT WAS SO SPECIAL, WHY WERE THE PHILISTINES ALLOWED TO HAVE IT?→
God wanted to dwell among his people. How does a holy God dwell among sinful people? First God required the people to sacrifice a perfect animal for their sins (Lev 17:11). The blood of the animal was important to justify the people before God. Only the finest animal-a perfect one-was good enough. Sacrifices needed to be offered on a regular basis (Heb 9:25). The person bringing the offering would put his hand on the head of the lamb
The term ark in Scriptures has two main meanings: one is a large boat built by Noah, and the other is the ark of the covenant that was housed in the tabernacle and later in the temple. Both of these images encapsulate important spiritual truths related to salvation.