Chief of the three - a title given to Adino the Eznite, one of David's greatest heroes (2 Sam. 23:8); also called Jashobeam (1 Chr. 11:11).
Chief priest - See PRIEST.
Chiefs of Asia - "Asiarchs," the title given to certain wealthy persons annually appointed to preside over the religious festivals and games in the various cities of proconsular Asia (Acts 19:31). Some of these officials appear to have been Paul's friends.
Child - This word has considerable latitude of meaning in Scripture. Thus Joseph is called a child at the time when he was probably about sixteen years of age (Gen. 37:3); and Benjamin is so called when he was above thirty years (44:20). Solomon called himself a little child when he came to the kingdom (1 Kings 3:7).
The descendants of a man, however remote, are called his children; as, "the children of Edom," "the children of Moab," "the children of Israel."
In the earliest times mothers did not wean their children till they were from thirty months to three years old; and the day on which they were weaned was kept as a festival day (Gen. 21:8; Ex. 2:7, 9; 1 Sam. 1:22-24; Matt. 21:16). At the age of five, children began to learn the arts and duties of life under the care of their fathers (Deut. 6:20-25; 11:19).
To have a numerous family was regarded as a mark of divine favour (Gen. 11:30; 30:1; 1 Sam. 2:5; 2 Sam. 6:23; Ps. 127:3; 128:3).
Figuratively the name is used for those who are ignorant or narrow-minded (Matt. 11:16; Luke 7:32; 1 Cor. 13:11). "When I was a child, I spake as a child." "Brethren, be not children in understanding" (1 Cor. 14:20). "That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro" (Eph. 4:14).
Children are also spoken of as representing simplicity and humility (Matt. 19:13-15; Mark 10:13-16; Luke 18:15-17). Believers are "children of light" (Luke 16:8; 1 Thess. 5:5) and "children of obedience" (1 Pet. 1:14).
Chileab - protected by the father, David's second son by Abigail (2 Sam. 3:3); called also Daniel (1 Chr. 3:1). He seems to have died when young.
Chilion - the pining one, the younger son of Elimelech and Naomi, and husband of Orpah, Ruth's sister (Ruth 1:2; 4:9).
Chilmad - a place or country unknown which, along with Sheba and Asshur, traded with Tyre (Ezek. 27:23).
Chimham - pining, probably the youngest son of Barzillai the Gileadite (2 Sam. 19:37-40). The "habitation of Chimham" (Jer. 41:17) was probably an inn or khan, which is the proper meaning of the Hebrew geruth, rendered "habitation", established in later times in his possession at Bethlehem, which David gave to him as a reward for his loyalty in accompanying him to Jerusalem after the defeat of Absalom (1 Kings 2:7). It has been supposed that, considering the stationary character of Eastern institutions, it was in the stable of this inn or caravanserai that our Saviour was born (Luke 2:7).
Chinnereth - lyre, the singular form of the word (Deut. 3:17; Josh. 19:35), which is also used in the plural form, Chinneroth, the name of a fenced city which stood near the shore of the lake of Galilee, a little to the south of Tiberias. The town seems to have given its name to a district, as appears from 1 Kings 15:20, where the plural form of the word is used.
The Sea of Chinnereth (Num. 34:11; Josh. 13:27), or of Chinneroth (Josh. 12: 3), was the "lake of Gennesaret" or "sea of Tiberias" (Deut. 3:17; Josh. 11:2). Chinnereth was probably an ancient Canaanitish name adopted by the Israelites into their language.
Chios - mentioned in Acts 20:15, an island in the Aegean Sea, about 5 miles distant from the mainland, having a roadstead, in the shelter of which Paul and his companions anchored for a night when on his third missionary return journey. It is now called Scio.
Chisleu - the name adopted from the Babylonians by the Jews after the Captivity for the third civil, or ninth ecclesiastical, month (Neh. 1:1; Zech. 7:1). It corresponds nearly with the moon in November.
Chittim - or Kittim, a plural form (Gen. 10:4), the name of a branch of the descendants of Javan, the "son" of Japheth. Balaam foretold (Num. 24:24) "that ships shall come from the coast of Chittim, and afflict Eber." Daniel prophesied (11:30) that the ships of Chittim would come against the king of the north. It probably denotes Cyprus, whose ancient capital was called Kition by the Greeks.
The references elsewhere made to Chittim (Isa. 23:1, 12; Jer. 2:10; Ezek. 27:6) are to be explained on the ground that while the name originally designated the Phoenicians only, it came latterly to be used of all the islands and various settlements on the sea-coasts which they had occupied, and then of the people who succeeded them when the Phoenician power decayed. Hence it designates generally the islands and coasts of the Mediterranean and the races that inhabit them.
Chiun - occurs only in Amos 5:26 (R.V. marg., "shrine"). The LXX. translated the word by Rhephan, which became corrupted into Remphan, as used by Stephen (Acts 7:43; but R.V., "Rephan"). Probably the planet Saturn is intended by the name. Astrologers represented this planet as baleful in its influences, and hence the Phoenicians offered to it human sacrifices, especially children.
Chloe - verdure, a female Christian (1 Cor. 1:11), some of whose household had informed Paul of the divided state of the Corinthian church. Nothing is known of her.
Chor-ashan - smoking furnace, one of the places where "David himself and his men were wont to haunt" (1 Sam. 30:30, 31). It is probably identical with Ashan (Josh. 15:42; 19:7), a Simeonite city in the Negeb, i.e., the south, belonging to Judah. The word ought, according to another reading, to be "Bor-ashan."
Chorazin - named along with Bethsaida and Capernaum as one of the cities in which our Lord's "mighty works" were done, and which was doomed to woe because of signal privileges neglected (Matt. 11:21; Luke 10:13). It has been identified by general consent with the modern Kerazeh, about 2 1/2 miles up the Wady Kerazeh from Capernaum; i.e., Tell Hum.
Chosen - spoken of warriors (Ex. 15:4; Judg. 20:16), of the Hebrew nation (Ps. 105:43; Deut. 7:7), of Jerusalem as the seat of the temple (1 Kings 11:13). Christ is the "chosen" of God (Isa. 42:1); and the apostles are "chosen" for their work (Acts 10:41). It is said with regard to those who do not profit by their opportunities that "many are called, but few are chosen" (Matt. 20:16).
Chozeba - (1 Chr. 4:22), the same as Chezib and Achzib, a place in the lowlands of Judah (Gen. 38:5; Josh. 15:44).
Christ - anointed, the Greek translation of the Hebrew word rendered "Messiah" (q.v.), the official title of our Lord, occurring five hundred and fourteen times in the New Testament. It denotes that he was anointed or consecrated to his great redemptive work as Prophet, Priest, and King of his people. He is Jesus the Christ (Acts 17:3; 18:5; Matt. 22:42), the Anointed One. He is thus spoken of by Isaiah (61:1), and by Daniel (9:24-26), who styles him "Messiah the Prince."
The Messiah is the same person as "the seed of the woman" (Gen. 3:15), "the seed of Abraham" (Gen. 22:18), the "Prophet like unto Moses" (Deut. 18:15), "the priest after the order of Melchizedek" (Ps. 110:4), "the rod out of the stem of Jesse" (Isa. 11:1, 10), the "Immanuel," the virgin's son (Isa. 7:14), "the branch of Jehovah" (Isa. 4:2), and "the messenger of the covenant" (Mal. 3:1). This is he "of whom Moses in the law and the prophets did write." The Old Testament Scripture is full of prophetic declarations regarding the Great Deliverer and the work he was to accomplish. Jesus the Christ is Jesus the Great Deliverer, the Anointed One, the Saviour of men. This name denotes that Jesus was divinely appointed, commissioned, and accredited as the Saviour of men (Heb. 5:4; Isa. 11:2-4; 49:6; John 5:37; Acts 2:22).
To believe that "Jesus is the Christ" is to believe that he is the Anointed, the Messiah of the prophets, the Saviour sent of God, that he was, in a word, what he claimed to be. This is to believe the gospel, by the faith of which alone men can be brought unto God. That Jesus is the Christ is the testimony of God, and the faith of this constitutes a Christian (1 Cor. 12:3; 1 John 5:1).
Christian - the name given by the Greeks or Romans, probably in reproach, to the followers of Jesus. It was first used at Antioch. The names by which the disciples were known among themselves were "brethren," "the faithful," "elect," "saints," "believers." But as distinguishing them from the multitude without, the name "Christian" came into use, and was universally accepted. This name occurs but three times in the New Testament (Acts 11:26; 26:28; 1 Pet. 4:16).
Christs, False - Our Lord warned his disciples that they would arise (Matt. 24:24). It is said that no fewer than twenty-four persons have at different times appeared (the last in 1682) pretending to be the Messiah of the prophets.
Chronicles - the words of the days, (1 Kings 14:19; 1 Chr. 27:24), the daily or yearly records of the transactions of the kingdom; events recorded in the order of time.
Chronicles, Books of - The two books were originally one. They bore the title in the Massoretic Hebrew Dibre hayyamim, i.e., "Acts of the Days." This title was rendered by Jerome in his Latin version "Chronicon," and hence "Chronicles." In the Septuagint version the book is divided into two, and bears the title Paraleipomena, i.e., "things omitted," or "supplements", because containing many things omitted in the Books of Kings.
The contents of these books are comprehended under four heads. (1.) The first nine chapters of Book I. contain little more than a list of genealogies in the line of Israel down to the time of David. (2.) The remainder of the first book contains a history of the reign of David. (3.) The first nine chapters of Book II. contain the history of the reign of Solomon. (4.) The remaining chapters of the second book contain the history of the separate kingdom of Judah to the time of the return from Babylonian Exile.
The time of the composition of the Chronicles was, there is every ground to conclude, subsequent to the Babylonian Exile, probably between 450 and 435 B.C. The contents of this twofold book, both as to matter and form, correspond closely with this idea. The close of the book records the proclamation of Cyrus permitting the Jews to return to their own land, and this forms the opening passage of the Book of Ezra, which must be viewed as a continuation of the Chronicles. The peculiar form of the language, being Aramaean in its general character, harmonizes also with that of the books which were written after the Exile. The author was certainly contemporary with Zerubbabel, details of whose family history are given (1 Chr. 3:19).
The time of the composition being determined, the question of the authorship may be more easily decided. According to Jewish tradition, which was universally received down to the middle of the seventeenth century, Ezra was regarded as the author of the Chronicles. There are many points of resemblance and of contact between the Chronicles and the Book of Ezra which seem to confirm this opinion. The conclusion of the one and the beginning of the other are almost identical in expression. In their spirit and characteristics they are the same, showing thus also an identity of authorship.
In their general scope and design these books are not so much historical as didactic. The principal aim of the writer appears to be to present moral and religious truth. He does not give prominence to political occurences, as is done in Samuel and Kings, but to ecclesiastical institutions. "The genealogies, so uninteresting to most modern readers, were really an important part of the public records of the Hebrew state. They were the basis on which not only the land was distributed and held, but the public services of the temple were arranged and conducted, the Levites and their descendants alone, as is well known, being entitled and first fruits set apart for that purpose." The "Chronicles" are an epitome of the sacred history from the days of Adam down to the return from Babylonian Exile, a period of about 3,500 years. The writer gathers up "the threads of the old national life broken by the Captivity."
The sources whence the chronicler compiled his work were public records, registers, and genealogical tables belonging to the Jews. These are referred to in the course of the book (1 Chr. 27:24; 29:29; 2 Chr. 9:29; 12:15; 13:22; 20:34; 24:27; 26:22; 32:32; 33:18, 19; 27:7; 35:25). There are in Chronicles, and the books of Samuel and Kings, forty parallels, often verbal, proving that the writer both knew and used these records (1 Chr. 17:18; comp. 2 Sam. 7:18-20; 1 Chr. 19; comp. 2 Sam. 10, etc.).
As compared with Samuel and Kings, the Book of Chronicles omits many particulars there recorded (2 Sam. 6:20-23; 9; 11; 14-19, etc.), and includes many things peculiar to itself (1 Chr. 12; 22; 23-26; 27; 28; 29, etc.). Twenty whole chapters, and twenty-four parts of chapters, are occupied with matter not found elsewhere. It also records many things in fuller detail, as (e.g.) the list of David's heroes (1 Chr. 12:1-37), the removal of the ark from Kirjath-jearim to Mount Zion (1 Chr. 13; 15:2-24; 16:4-43; comp. 2 Sam. 6), Uzziah's leprosy and its cause (2 Chr. 26:16-21; comp. 2 Kings 15:5), etc.
It has also been observed that another peculiarity of the book is that it substitutes modern and more common expressions for those that had then become unusual or obsolete. This is seen particularly in the substitution of modern names of places, such as were in use in the writer's day, for the old names; thus Gezer (1 Chr. 20:4) is used instead of Gob (2 Sam. 21:18), etc.
The Books of Chronicles are ranked among the khethubim or hagiographa. They are alluded to, though not directly quoted, in the New Testament (Heb. 5:4; Matt. 12:42; 23:35; Luke 1:5; 11:31, 51).
Chronicles of king David - (1 Chr. 27:24) were statistical state records; one of the public sources from which the compiler of the Books of Chronicles derived information on various public matters.
Chronology - is the arrangement of facts and events in the order of time. The writers of the Bible themselves do not adopt any standard era according to which they date events. Sometimes the years are reckoned, e.g., from the time of the Exodus (Num. 1:1; 33:38; 1 Kings 6:1), and sometimes from the accession of kings (1 Kings 15:1, 9, 25, 33, etc.), and sometimes again from the return from Exile (Ezra 3:8).
Hence in constructing a system of Biblecal chronology, the plan has been adopted of reckoning the years from the ages of the patriarchs before the birth of their first-born sons for the period from the Creation to Abraham. After this period other data are to be taken into account in determining the relative sequence of events.
As to the patriarchal period, there are three principal systems of chronology: (1) that of the Hebrew text, (2) that of the Septuagint version, and (3) that of the Samaritan Pentateuch, as seen in the scheme on the opposite page.
The Samaritan and the Septuagint have considerably modified the Hebrew chronology. This modification some regard as having been wilfully made, and to be rejected. The same system of variations is observed in the chronology of the period between the Flood and Abraham. Thus:
| Hebrew Septuigant Samaritan | From the birth of | Arphaxad, 2 years | after the Flood, to | the birth of Terah. 220 1000 870 | From the birth of | Terah to the birth | of Abraham. 130 70 72
The Septuagint fixes on seventy years as the age of Terah at the birth of Abraham, from Gen. 11:26; but a comparison of Gen. 11:32 and Acts 7:4 with Gen. 12:4 shows that when Terah died, at the age of two hundred and five years, Abraham was seventy-five years, and hence Terah must have been one hundred and thirty years when Abraham was born. Thus, including the two years from the Flood to the birth of Arphaxad, the period from the Flood to the birth of Abraham was three hundred and fifty-two years.
The next period is from the birth of Abraham to the Exodus. This, according to the Hebrew, extends to five hundred and five years. The difficulty here is as to the four hundred and thirty years mentioned Ex. 12:40, 41; Gal. 3:17. These years are regarded by some as dating from the covenant with Abraham (Gen. 15), which was entered into soon after his sojourn in Egypt; others, with more probability, reckon these years from Jacob's going down into Egypt.)
In modern times the systems of Biblical chronology that have been adopted are chiefly those of Ussher and Hales. The former follows the Hebrew, and the latter the Septuagint mainly. Archbishop Ussher's (died 1656) system is called the short chronology. It is that given on the margin of the Authorized Version, but is really of no authority, and is quite uncertain.
| Ussher Hales | B.C. B.C. | Creation 4004 5411 | Flood 2348 3155 | Abram leaves Haran 1921 2078 | Exodus 1491 1648 | Destruction of the | Temple 588 586
To show at a glance the different ideas of the date of the creation, it may be interesting to note the following: From Creation to 1894.
According to Ussher, 5,898; Hales, 7,305; Zunz (Hebrew reckoning), 5,882; Septuagint (Perowne), 7,305; Rabbinical, 5,654; Panodorus, 7,387; Anianus, 7,395; Constantinopolitan, 7,403; Eusebius, 7,093; Scaliger, 5,844; Dionysius (from whom we take our Christian era), 7,388; Maximus, 7,395; Syncellus and Theophanes, 7,395; Julius Africanus, 7,395; Jackson, 7,320.
Chrysoprasus - golden leek, a precious stone of the colour of leek's juice, a greenish-golden colour (Rev. 21:20).
Chub - the name of a people in alliance with Egypt in the time of Nebuchadnezzar. The word is found only in Ezek. 30:5. They were probably a people of Northern Africa, or of the lands near Egypt in the south.
Chun - one of the cities of Hadarezer, king of Syria. David procured brass (i.e., bronze or copper) from it for the temple (1 Chr. 18:8). It is called Berothai in 2 Sam. 8:8; probably the same as Berothah in Ezek. 47:16.
Church - Derived probably from the Greek kuriakon (i.e., "the Lord's house"), which was used by ancient authors for the place of worship.
In the New Testament it is the translation of the Greek word ecclesia, which is synonymous with the Hebrew kahal of the Old Testament, both words meaning simply an assembly, the character of which can only be known from the connection in which the word is found. There is no clear instance of its being used for a place of meeting or of worship, although in post-apostolic times it early received this meaning. Nor is this word ever used to denote the inhabitants of a country united in the same profession, as when we say the "Church of England," the "Church of Scotland," etc.
We find the word ecclesia used in the following senses in the New Testament: (1.) It is translated "assembly" in the ordinary classical sense (Acts 19:32, 39, 41).
(2.) It denotes the whole body of the redeemed, all those whom the Father has given to Christ, the invisible catholic church (Eph. 5:23, 25, 27, 29; Heb. 12:23).
(3.) A few Christians associated together in observing the ordinances of the gospel are an ecclesia (Rom. 16:5; Col. 4:15).
(4.) All the Christians in a particular city, whether they assembled together in one place or in several places for religious worship, were an ecclesia. Thus all the disciples in Antioch, forming several congregations, were one church (Acts 13:1); so also we read of the "church of God at Corinth" (1 Cor. 1:2), "the church at Jerusalem" (Acts 8:1), "the church of Ephesus" (Rev. 2:1), etc.
(5.) The whole body of professing Christians throughout the world (1 Cor. 15:9; Gal. 1:13; Matt. 16:18) are the church of Christ.
The church visible "consists of all those throughout the world that profess the true religion, together with their children." It is called "visible" because its members are known and its assemblies are public. Here there is a mixture of "wheat and chaff," of saints and sinners. "God has commanded his people to organize themselves into distinct visible ecclesiastical communities, with constitutions, laws, and officers, badges, ordinances, and discipline, for the great purpose of giving visibility to his kingdom, of making known the gospel of that kingdom, and of gathering in all its elect subjects. Each one of these distinct organized communities which is faithful to the great King is an integral part of the visible church, and all together constitute the catholic or universal visible church." A credible profession of the true religion constitutes a person a member of this church. This is "the kingdom of heaven," whose character and progress are set forth in the parables recorded in Matt. 13.
The children of all who thus profess the true religion are members of the visible church along with their parents. Children are included in every covenant God ever made with man. They go along with their parents (Gen. 9:9-17; 12:1-3; 17:7; Ex. 20:5; Deut. 29:10-13). Peter, on the day of Pentecost, at the beginning of the New Testament dispensation, announces the same great principle. "The promise [just as to Abraham and his seed the promises were made] is unto you, and to your children" (Acts 2:38, 39). The children of believing parents are "holy", i.e., are "saints", a title which designates the members of the Christian church (1 Cor. 7:14).
The church invisible "consists of the whole number of the elect that have been, are, or shall be gathered into one under Christ, the head thereof." This is a pure society, the church in which Christ dwells. It is the body of Christ. it is called "invisible" because the greater part of those who constitute it are already in heaven or are yet unborn, and also because its members still on earth cannot certainly be distinguished. The qualifications of membership in it are internal and are hidden. It is unseen except by Him who "searches the heart." "The Lord knoweth them that are his" (2 Tim. 2:19).
The church to which the attributes, prerogatives, and promises appertaining to Christ's kingdom belong, is a spiritual body consisting of all true believers, i.e., the church invisible.
(1.) Its unity. God has ever had only one church on earth. We sometimes speak of the Old Testament Church and of the New Testament church, but they are one and the same. The Old Testament church was not to be changed but enlarged (Isa. 49:13-23; 60:1-14). When the Jews are at length restored, they will not enter a new church, but will be grafted again into "their own olive tree" (Rom. 11:18-24; comp. Eph. 2:11-22). The apostles did not set up a new organization. Under their ministry disciples were "added" to the "church" already existing (Acts 2:47).
(2.) Its universality. It is the "catholic" church; not confined to any particular country or outward organization, but comprehending all believers throughout the whole world.
(3.) Its perpetuity. It will continue through all ages to the end of the world. It can never be destroyed. It is an "everlasting kindgdom."
Churl - in Isa. 32:5 (R.V. marg., "crafty"), means a deceiver. In 1 Sam. 25:3, the word churlish denotes a man that is coarse and ill-natured, or, as the word literally means, "hard." The same Greek word as used by the LXX. here is found in Matt. 25:24, and there is rendered "hard."
Chushan-rishathaim - Cush of double wickedness, or governor of two presidencies, the king of Mesopotamia who oppressed Israel in the generation immediately following Joshua (Judg. 3:8). We learn from the Tell-el-Amarna tablets that Palestine had been invaded by the forces of Aram-naharaim (A.V., "Mesopotamia") more than once, long before the Exodus, and that at the time they were written the king of Aram-naharaim was still intriguing in Canaan. It is mentioned among the countries which took part in the attack upon Egypt in the reign of Rameses III. (of the Twentieth Dynasty), but as its king is not one of the princes stated to have been conquered by the Pharaoh, it would seem that he did not actually enter Egypt. As the reign of Rameses III. corresponds with the Israelitish occupation of Canaan, it is probable that the Egyptian monuments refer to the oppression of the Israelites by Chushan-rishathaim. Canaan was still regarded as a province of Egypt, so that, in attacking it Chushan-rishathaim would have been considered to be attacking Egypt.
Cilicia - a maritime province in the south-east of Asia Minor. Tarsus, the birth-place of Paul, was one of its chief towns, and the seat of a celebrated school of philosophy. Its luxurious climate attracted to it many Greek residents after its incorporation with the Macedonian empire. It was formed into a Roman province, B.C. 67. The Jews of Cilicia had a synagogue at Jerusalem (Acts 6:9). Paul visited it soon after his conversion (Gal. 1:21; Acts 9:30), and again, on his second missionary journey (15:41), "he went through Syria and Cilicia, confirming the churches." It was famous for its goat's-hair cloth, called cilicium. Paul learned in his youth the trade of making tents of this cloth.
Cinnamon - Heb. kinamon, the Cinnamomum zeylanicum of botanists, a tree of the Laurel family, which grows only in India on the Malabar coast, in Ceylon, and China. There is no trace of it in Egypt, and it was unknown in Syria. The inner rind when dried and rolled into cylinders forms the cinnamon of commerce. The fruit and coarser pieces of bark when boiled yield a fragrant oil. It was one of the principal ingredients in the holy anointing oil (Ex. 30:23). It is mentioned elsewhere only in Prov. 7:17; Cant. 4:14; Rev. 18:13. The mention of it indicates a very early and extensive commerce carried on between Palestine and the East.
Cinnereth - a harp, one of the "fenced cities" of Naphtali (Josh. 19:35; comp. Deut. 3:17). It also denotes, apparently, a district which may have taken its name from the adjacent city or lake of Gennesaret, anciently called "the sea of Chinnereth" (q.v.), and was probably that enclosed district north of Tiberias afterwards called "the plain of Gennesaret." Called Chinneroth (R.V., Chinnereth) Josh. 11:2. The phrase "all Cinneroth, with all the land of Naphtali" in 1 Kings 15:20 is parallel to "the store-houses of the cities of Naphtali" (R.V. marg.) in 2 Chr. 16:4.
Circuit - the apparent diurnal revolution of the sun round the earth (Ps. 19:6), and the changes of the wind (Eccl. 1:6). In Job 22:14, "in the circuit of heaven" (R.V. marg., "on the vault of heaven") means the "arch of heaven," which seems to be bent over our heads.
Circumcision - cutting around. This rite, practised before, as some think, by divers races, was appointed by God to be the special badge of his chosen people, an abiding sign of their consecration to him. It was established as a national ordinance (Gen. 17:10, 11). In compliance with the divine command, Abraham, though ninety-nine years of age, was circumcised on the same day with Ishmael, who was thirteen years old (17:24-27). Slaves, whether home-born or purchased, were circumcised (17:12, 13); and all foreigners must have their males circumcised before they could enjoy the privileges of Jewish citizenship (Ex. 12:48). During the journey through the wilderness, the practice of circumcision fell into disuse, but was resumed by the command of Joshua before they entered the Promised Land (Josh. 5:2-9). It was observed always afterwards among the tribes of israel, although it is not expressly mentioned from the time of the settlement in Canaan till the time of Christ, about 1,450 years. The Jews prided themselves in the possession of this covenant distinction (Judg. 14:3; 15:18; 1 Sam. 14:6; 17:26; 2 Sam. 1:20; Ezek. 31:18).
As a rite of the church it ceased when the New Testament times began (Gal. 6:15; Col. 3:11). Some Jewish Christians sought to impose it, however, on the Gentile converts; but this the apostles resolutely resisted (Acts 15:1; Gal. 6:12). Our Lord was circumcised, for it "became him to fulfil all righteousness," as of the seed of Abraham, according to the flesh; and Paul "took and circumcised" Timothy (Acts 16:3), to avoid giving offence to the Jews. It would render Timothy's labours more acceptable to the Jews. But Paul would by no means consent to the demand that Titus should be circumcised (Gal. 2:3-5). The great point for which he contended was the free admission of uncircumcised Gentiles into the church. He contended successfully in behalf of Titus, even in Jerusalem.
In the Old Testament a spiritual idea is attached to circumcision. It was the symbol of purity (Isa. 52:1). We read of uncircumcised lips (Ex. 6:12, 30), ears (Jer. 6:10), hearts (Lev. 26:41). The fruit of a tree that is unclean is spoken of as uncircumcised (Lev. 19:23).
It was a sign and seal of the covenant of grace as well as of the national covenant between God and the Hebrews. (1.) It sealed the promises made to Abraham, which related to the commonwealth of Israel, national promises. (2.) But the promises made to Abraham included the promise of redemption (Gal. 3:14), a promise which has come upon us. The covenant with Abraham was a dispensation or a specific form of the covenant of grace, and circumcision was a sign and seal of that covenant. It had a spiritual meaning. It signified purification of the heart, inward circumcision effected by the Spirit (Deut. 10:16; 30:6; Ezek. 44:7; Acts 7:51; Rom. 2:28; Col. 2:11). Circumcision as a symbol shadowing forth sanctification by the Holy Spirit has now given way to the symbol of baptism (q.v.). But the truth embodied in both ordinances is ever the same, the removal of sin, the sanctifying effects of grace in the heart.
Under the Jewish dispensation, church and state were identical. No one could be a member of the one without also being a member of the other. Circumcision was a sign and seal of membership in both. Every circumcised person bore thereby evidence that he was one of the chosen people, a member of the church of God as it then existed, and consequently also a member of the Jewish commonwealth.
Cistern - the rendering of a Hebrew word bor, which means a receptacle for water conveyed to it; distinguished from beer, which denotes a place where water rises on the spot (Jer. 2:13; Prov. 5:15; Isa. 36:16), a fountain. Cisterns are frequently mentioned in Scripture. The scarcity of springs in Palestine made it necessary to collect rain-water in reservoirs and cisterns (Num. 21:22).
Empty cisterns were sometimes used as prisons (Jer. 38:6; Lam. 3:53; Ps. 40:2; 69:15). The "pit" into which Joseph was cast (Gen. 37:24) was a beer or dry well. There are numerous remains of ancient cisterns in all parts of Palestine.
Citizenship - the rights and privileges of a citizen in distinction from a foreigner (Luke 15:15; 19:14; Acts 21:39). Under the Mosaic law non-Israelites, with the exception of the Moabites and the Ammonites and others mentioned in Deut. 23:1-3, were admitted to the general privileges of citizenship among the Jews (Ex. 12:19; Lev. 24:22; Num. 15:15; 35:15; Deut. 10:18; 14:29; 16:10, 14).
The right of citizenship under the Roman government was granted by the emperor to individuals, and sometimes to provinces, as a favour or as a recompense for services rendered to the state, or for a sum of money (Acts 22:28). This "freedom" secured privileges equal to those enjoyed by natives of Rome. Among the most notable of these was the provision that a man could not be bound or imprisoned without a formal trial (Acts 22:25, 26), or scourged (16:37). All Roman citizens had the right of appeal to Caesar (25:11).
City - The earliest mention of city-building is that of Enoch, which was built by Cain (Gen. 4:17). After the confusion of tongues, the descendants of Nimrod founded several cities (10:10-12). Next, we have a record of the cities of the Canaanites, Sidon, Gaza, Sodom, etc. (10:12, 19; 11:3, 9; 36:31-39). The earliest description of a city is that of Sodom (19:1-22). Damascus is said to be the oldest existing city in the world. Before the time of Abraham there were cities in Egypt (Num. 13:22). The Israelites in Egypt were employed in building the "treasure cities" of Pithom and Raamses (Ex. 1:11); but it does not seem that they had any cities of their own in Goshen (Gen. 46:34; 47:1-11). In the kingdom of Og in Bashan there were sixty "great cities with walls," and twenty-three cities in Gilead partly rebuilt by the tribes on the east of Jordan (Num. 21:21, 32, 33, 35; 32:1-3, 34-42; Deut. 3:4, 5, 14; 1 Kings 4:13). On the west of Jordan were thirty-one "royal cities" (Josh. 12), besides many others spoken of in the history of Israel.
A fenced city was a city surrounded by fortifications and high walls, with watch-towers upon them (2 Chr. 11:11; Deut. 3:5). There was also within the city generally a tower to which the citizens might flee when danger threatened them (Judg. 9:46-52).
A city with suburbs was a city surrounded with open pasture-grounds, such as the forty-eight cities which were given to the Levites (Num. 35:2-7). There were six cities of refuge, three on each side of Jordan, namely, Kadesh, Shechem, Hebron, on the west of Jordan; and on the east, Bezer, Ramoth-gilead, and Golan. The cities on each side of the river were nearly opposite each other. The regulations concerning these cities are given in Num. 35:9-34; Deut. 19:1-13; Ex. 21:12-14.
When David reduced the fortress of the Jebusites which stood on Mount Zion, he built on the site of it a palace and a city, which he called by his own name (1 Chr. 11:5), the city of David. Bethlehem is also so called as being David's native town (Luke 2:4).
Jerusalem is called the Holy City, the holiness of the temple being regarded as extending in some measure over the whole city (Neh. 11:1).
Pithom and Raamses, built by the Israelites as "treasure cities," were not places where royal treasures were kept, but were fortified towns where merchants might store their goods and transact their business in safety, or cities in which munitions of war were stored.
Clauda - a small island off the southwest coast of Crete, passed by Paul on his voyage to Rome (Acts 27:16). It is about 7 miles long and 3 broad. It is now called Gozzo (R.V., "Cauda").
Claudia - a female Christian mentioned in 2 Tim. 4:21. It is a conjecture having some probability that she was a British maiden, the daughter of king Cogidunus, who was an ally of Rome, and assumed the name of the emperor, his patron, Tiberius Claudius, and that she was the wife of Pudens.
Claudius - lame. (1.) The fourth Roman emperor. He succeeded Caligula (A.D. 41). Though in general he treated the Jews, especially those in Asia and Egypt, with great indulgence, yet about the middle of his reign (A.D. 49) he banished them all from Rome (Acts 18:2). In this edict the Christians were included, as being, as was supposed, a sect of Jews. The Jews, however soon again returned to Rome.
During the reign of this emperor, several persecutions of the Christians by the Jews took place in the dominions of Herod Agrippa, in one of which the apostle James was "killed" (12:2). He died A.D. 54.
(2.) Claudius Lysias, a Greek who, having obtained by purchase the privilege of Roman citizenship, took the name of Claudius (Acts 21:31-40; 22:28; 23:26).
Clay - This word is used of sediment found in pits or in streets (Isa. 57:20; Jer. 38:60), of dust mixed with spittle (John 9:6), and of potter's clay (Isa. 41:25; Nah. 3:14; Jer. 18:1-6; Rom. 9:21). Clay was used for sealing (Job 38:14; Jer. 32:14). Our Lord's tomb may have been thus sealed (Matt. 27:66). The practice of sealing doors with clay is still common in the East. Clay was also in primitive times used for mortar (Gen. 11:3). The "clay ground" in which the large vessels of the temple were cast (1 Kings 7:46; 2 Chr. 4:17) was a compact loam fitted for the purpose. The expression literally rendered is, "in the thickness of the ground,", meaning, "in stiff ground" or in clay.
Clean - The various forms of uncleanness according to the Mosaic law are enumerated in Lev. 11-15; Num. 19. The division of animals into clean and unclean was probably founded on the practice of sacrifice. It existed before the Flood (Gen. 7:2). The regulations regarding such animals are recorded in Lev. 11 and Deut. 14:1-21.
The Hebrews were prohibited from using as food certain animal substances, such as (1) blood; (2) the fat covering the intestines, termed the caul; (3) the fat on the intestines, called the mesentery; (4) the fat of the kidneys; and (5) the fat tail of certain sheep (Ex. 29:13, 22; Lev. 3:4-9; 9:19; 17:10; 19:26).
The chief design of these regulations seems to have been to establish a system of regimen which would distinguish the Jews from all other nations. Regarding the design and the abolition of these regulations the reader will find all the details in Lev. 20:24-26; Acts 10:9-16; 11:1-10; Heb. 9:9-14.
Clement - mild, a Christian of Philippi, Paul's "fellow-labourer," whose name he mentions as "in the book of life" (Phil. 4:3). It was an opinion of ancient writers that he was the Clement of Rome whose name is well known in church history, and that he was the author of an Epistle to the Corinthians, the only known manuscript of which is appended to the Alexandrian Codex, now in the British Museum. It is of some historical interest, and has given rise to much discussion among critics. It makes distinct reference to Paul's First Epistle to the Corinthians.
Cleopas - (abbreviation of Cleopatros), one of the two disciples with whom Jesus conversed on the way to Emmaus on the day of the resurrection (Luke 24:18). We know nothing definitely regarding him. It is not certain that he was the Clopas of John 19:25, or the Alphaeus of Matt. 10:3, although he may have been so.
Cleophas - (in the spelling of this word h is inserted by mistake from Latin MSS.), rather Cleopas, which is the Greek form of the word, while Clopas is the Aramaic form. In John 19:25 the Authorized Version reads, "Mary, the wife of Clopas." The word "wife" is conjecturally inserted here. If "wife" is rightly inserted, then Mary was the mother of James the Less, and Clopas is the same as Alphaeus (Matt. 10:3; 27:56).
Cloak - an upper garment, "an exterior tunic, wide and long, reaching to the ankles, but without sleeves" (Isa. 59:17). The word so rendered is elsewhere rendered "robe" or "mantle." It was worn by the high priest under the ephod (Ex. 28:31), by kings and others of rank (1 Sam. 15:27; Job 1:20; 2:12), and by women (2 Sam. 13:18).
The word translated "cloke", i.e., outer garment, in Matt. 5:40 is in its plural form used of garments in general (Matt. 17:2; 26:65). The cloak mentioned here and in Luke 6:29 was the Greek himation, Latin pallium, and consisted of a large square piece of wollen cloth fastened round the shoulders, like the abba of the Arabs. This could be taken by a creditor (Ex. 22:26,27), but the coat or tunic (Gr. chiton) mentioned in Matt. 5:40 could not.
The cloak which Paul "left at Troas" (2 Tim. 4:13) was the Roman paenula, a thick upper garment used chiefly in travelling as a protection from the weather. Some, however, have supposed that what Paul meant was a travelling-bag. In the Syriac version the word used means a bookcase.
Closet - as used in the New Testament, signifies properly a storehouse (Luke 12: 24), and hence a place of privacy and retirement (Matt. 6:6; Luke 12:3).
Cloud - The Hebrew so rendered means "a covering," because clouds cover the sky. The word is used as a symbol of the Divine presence, as indicating the splendour of that glory which it conceals (Ex. 16:10; 33:9; Num. 11:25; 12:5; Job 22:14; Ps. 18:11). A "cloud without rain" is a proverbial saying, denoting a man who does not keep his promise (Prov. 16:15; Isa. 18:4; 25:5; Jude 1:12). A cloud is the figure of that which is transitory (Job 30:15; Hos. 6:4). A bright cloud is the symbolical seat of the Divine presence (Ex.29:42, 43; 1 Kings 8:10; 2 Chr. 5:14; Ezek. 43:4), and was called the Shechinah (q.v.). Jehovah came down upon Sinai in a cloud (Ex. 19:9); and the cloud filled the court around the tabernacle in the wilderness so that Moses could not enter it (Ex. 40:34, 35). At the dedication of the temple also the cloud "filled the house of the Lord" (1 Kings 8:10). Thus in like manner when Christ comes the second time he is described as coming "in the clouds" (Matt. 17:5; 24:30; Acts 1:9, 11). False teachers are likened unto clouds carried about with a tempest (2 Pet. 2:17). The infirmities of old age, which come one after another, are compared by Solomon to "clouds returning after the rain" (Eccl. 12:2). The blotting out of sins is like the sudden disappearance of threatening clouds from the sky (Isa. 44:22).
Cloud, the pillar of, was the glory-cloud which indicated God's presence leading the ransomed people through the wilderness (Ex. 13:22; 33:9, 10). This pillar preceded the people as they marched, resting on the ark (Ex. 13:21; 40:36). By night it became a pillar of fire (Num. 9:17-23).
Cnidus - a town and harbour on the extreme south-west of the peninsula of Doris in Asia Minor. Paul sailed past it on his voyage to Rome after leaving Myra (Acts 27:7).
Coal - It is by no means certain that the Hebrews were acquainted with mineral coal, although it is found in Syria. Their common fuel was dried dung of animals and wood charcoal. Two different words are found in Hebrew to denote coal, both occurring in Prov. 26:21, "As coal [Heb. peham; i.e., "black coal"] is to burning coal [Heb. gehalim]." The latter of these words is used in Job 41:21; Prov. 6:28; Isa. 44:19. The words "live coal" in Isa. 6:6 are more correctly "glowing stone." In Lam. 4:8 the expression "blacker than a coal" is literally rendered in the margin of the Revised Version "darker than blackness." "Coals of fire" (2 Sam. 22:9, 13; Ps. 18:8, 12, 13, etc.) is an expression used metaphorically for lightnings proceeding from God. A false tongue is compared to "coals of juniper" (Ps. 120:4; James 3:6). "Heaping coals of fire on the head" symbolizes overcoming evil with good. The words of Paul (Rom. 12:20) are equivalent to saying, "By charity and kindness thou shalt soften down his enmity as surely as heaping coals on the fire fuses the metal in the crucible."
Coat - the tunic worn like the shirt next the skin (Lev. 16:4; Cant. 5:3; 2 Sam. 15:32; Ex. 28:4; 29:5). The "coats of skins" prepared by God for Adam and Eve were probably nothing more than aprons (Gen. 3:21). This tunic was sometimes woven entire without a seam (John 19:23); it was also sometimes of "many colours" (Gen. 37:3; R.V. marg., "a long garment with sleeves"). The "fisher's coat" of John 21:7 was obviously an outer garment or cloak, as was also the "coat" made by Hannah for Samuel (1 Sam. 2:19).
Coat of mail - the rendering of a Hebrew word meaning "glittering" (1 Sam. 17:5, 38). The same word in the plural form is translated "habergeons" in 2 Chr. 26:14 and Neh. 4:16. The "harness" (1 Kings 22:34), "breastplate" (Isa. 59:17), and "brigandine" (Jer. 46:4), were probably also corselets or coats of mail.
Cockatrice - the mediaeval name (a corruption of "crocodile") of a fabulous serpent supposed to be produced from a cock's egg. It is generally supposed to denote the cerastes, or "horned viper," a very poisonous serpent about a foot long. Others think it to be the yellow viper (Daboia xanthina), one of the most dangerous vipers, from its size and its nocturnal habits (Isa. 11:8; 14:29; 59:5; Jer. 8:17; in all which the Revised Version renders the Hebrew tziph'oni by "basilisk"). In Prov. 23:32 the Hebrew tzeph'a is rendered both in the Authorized Version and the Revised Version by "adder;" margin of Revised Version "basilisk," and of Authorized Version "cockatrice."
Cock-crowing - In our Lord's time the Jews had adopted the Greek and Roman division of the night into four watches, each consisting of three hours, the first beginning at six o'clock in the evening (Luke 12:38; Matt. 14:25; Mark 6:48). But the ancient division, known as the first and second cock-crowing, was still retained. The cock usually crows several times soon after midnight (this is the first crowing), and again at the dawn of day (and this is the second crowing). Mark mentions (14:30) the two cock-crowings. Matthew (26:34) alludes to that only which was emphatically the cock-crowing, viz, the second.
Cockle - occurs only in Job 31:40 (marg., "noisome weeds"), where it is the rendering of a Hebrew word (b'oshah) which means "offensive," "having a bad smell," referring to some weed perhaps which has an unpleasant odour. Or it may be regarded as simply any noisome weed, such as the "tares" or darnel of Matt. 13:30. In Isa. 5:2, 4 the plural form is rendered "wild grapes."
Coele-Syria - hollow Syria, the name (not found in Scripture) given by the Greeks to the extensive valley, about 100 miles long, between the Lebanon and the Anti-Lebanon range of mountains.
Coffer - the receptacle or small box placed beside the ark by the Philistines, in which they deposited the golden mice and the emerods as their trespass-offering (1 Sam. 6:8, 11, 15).
Coffin - used in Gen. 50:26 with reference to the burial of Joseph. Here, it means a mummy-chest. The same Hebrew word is rendered "chest" in 2 Kings 12:9, 10.
Cogitations - (or "thoughts," as the Chaldee word in Dan. 7:28 literally means), earnest meditation.
Coin - Before the Exile the Jews had no regularly stamped money. They made use of uncoined shekels or talents of silver, which they weighed out (Gen. 23:16; Ex. 38:24; 2 Sam. 18:12). Probably the silver ingots used in the time of Abraham may have been of a fixed weight, which was in some way indicated on them. The "pieces of silver" paid by Abimelech to Abraham (Gen. 20:16), and those also for which Joseph was sold (37:28), were proably in the form of rings. The shekel was the common standard of weight and value among the Hebrews down to the time of the Captivity. Only once is a shekel of gold mentioned (1 Chr. 21:25). The "six thousand of gold" mentioned in the transaction between Naaman and Gehazi (2 Kings 5:5) were probably so many shekels of gold. The "piece of money" mentioned in Job 42:11; Gen. 33:19 (marg., "lambs") was the Hebrew kesitah, probably an uncoined piece of silver of a certain weight in the form of a sheep or lamb, or perhaps having on it such an impression. The same Hebrew word is used in Josh. 24:32, which is rendered by Wickliffe "an hundred yonge scheep."
Collar - (Heb. peh), means in Job 30:18 the mouth or opening of the garment that closes round the neck in the same way as a tunic (Ex. 39:23). The "collars" (Heb. netiphoth) among the spoils of the Midianites (Judg. 8:26; R.V., "pendants") were ear-drops. The same Hebrew word is rendered "chains" in Isa. 3:19.
Collection - The Christians in Palestine, from various causes, suffered from poverty. Paul awakened an interest in them among the Gentile churches, and made pecuniary collections in their behalf (Acts 24:17; Rom. 15:25, 26; 1 Cor. 16:1-3; 2 Cor. 8:9; Gal. 2:10).
College - Heb. mishneh (2 Kings 22:14; 2 Chr. 34:22), rendered in Revised Version "second quarter", the residence of the prophetess Huldah. The Authorized Version followed the Jewish commentators, who, following the Targum, gave the Hebrew word its post-Biblical sense, as if it meant a place of instruction. It properly means the "second," and may therefore denote the lower city (Acra), which was built after the portion of the city on Mount Zion, and was enclosed by a second wall.
Colony - The city of Philippi was a Roman colony (Acts 16:12), i.e., a military settlement of Roman soldiers and citizens, planted there to keep in subjection a newly-conquered district. A colony was Rome in miniature, under Roman municipal law, but governed by military officers (praetors and lictors), not by proconsuls. It had an independent internal government, the jus Italicum; i.e., the privileges of Italian citizens.
Colossae - or Colosse, a city of Phrygia, on the Lycus, which is a tributary of the Maeander. It was about 12 miles above Laodicea, and near the great road from Ephesus to the Euphrates, and was consequently of some mercantile importance. It does not appear that Paul had visited this city when he wrote his letter to the church there (Col. 1:2). He expresses in his letter to Philemon (ver. 1:22) his hope to visit it on being delivered from his imprisonment. From Col. 1:7; 4:12 it has been concluded that Epaphras was the founder of the Colossian church. This town afterwards fell into decay, and the modern town of Chonas or Chonum occupies a site near its ruins.
Colossians, Epistle to the - was written by Paul at Rome during his first imprisonment there (Acts 28:16, 30), probably in the spring of A.D. 57, or, as some think, 62, and soon after he had written his Epistle to the Ephesians. Like some of his other epistles (e.g., those to Corinth), this seems to have been written in consequence of information which had somehow been conveyed to him of the internal state of the church there (Col. 1:4-8). Its object was to counteract false teaching. A large part of it is directed against certain speculatists who attempted to combine the doctrines of Oriental mysticism and asceticism with Christianity, thereby promising the disciples the enjoyment of a higher spiritual life and a deeper insight into the world of spirits. Paul argues against such teaching, showing that in Christ Jesus they had all things. He sets forth the majesty of his redemption. The mention of the "new moon" and "sabbath days" (2:16) shows also that there were here Judaizing teachers who sought to draw away the disciples from the simplicity of the gospel.
Like most of Paul's epistles, this consists of two parts, a doctrinal and a practical.
(1.) The doctrinal part comprises the first two chapters. His main theme is developed in chapter 2. He warns them against being drawn away from Him in whom dwelt all the fulness of the Godhead, and who was the head of all spiritual powers. Christ was the head of the body of which they were members; and if they were truly united to him, what needed they more?
(2.) The practical part of the epistle (3-4) enforces various duties naturally flowing from the doctrines expounded. They are exhorted to mind things that are above (3:1-4), to mortify every evil principle of their nature, and to put on the new man (3:5-14). Many special duties of the Christian life are also insisted upon as the fitting evidence of the Christian character. Tychicus was the bearer of the letter, as he was also of that to the Ephesians and to Philemon, and he would tell them of the state of the apostle (4:7-9). After friendly greetings (10-14), he bids them interchange this letter with that he had sent to the neighbouring church of Laodicea. He then closes this brief but striking epistle with his usual autograph salutation. There is a remarkable resemblance between this epistle and that to the Ephesians (q.v.). The genuineness of this epistle has not been called in question.
Colour - The subject of colours holds an important place in the Scriptures.
White occurs as the translation of various Hebrew words. It is applied to milk (Gen. 49:12), manna (Ex. 16:31), snow (Isa. 1:18), horses (Zech. 1:8), raiment (Eccl. 9:8). Another Hebrew word so rendered is applied to marble (Esther 1:6), and a cognate word to the lily (Cant. 2:16). A different term, meaning "dazzling," is applied to the countenance (Cant. 5:10).
This colour was an emblem of purity and innocence (Mark 16:5; John 20:12; Rev. 19:8, 14), of joy (Eccl. 9:8), and also of victory (Zech. 6:3; Rev. 6:2). The hangings of the tabernacle court (Ex. 27:9; 38:9), the coats, mitres, bonnets, and breeches of the priests (Ex. 39:27,28), and the dress of the high priest on the day of Atonement (Lev. 16:4,32), were white.
Black, applied to the hair (Lev. 13:31; Cant. 5:11), the complexion (Cant. 1:5), and to horses (Zech. 6:2,6). The word rendered "brown" in Gen. 30:32 (R.V., "black") means properly "scorched", i.e., the colour produced by the influence of the sun's rays. "Black" in Job 30:30 means dirty, blackened by sorrow and disease. The word is applied to a mourner's robes (Jer. 8:21; 14:2), to a clouded sky (1 Kings 18:45), to night (Micah 3:6; Jer. 4:28), and to a brook rendered turbid by melted snow (Job 6:16). It is used as symbolical of evil in Zech. 6:2, 6 and Rev. 6:5. It was the emblem of mourning, affliction, calamity (Jer. 14:2; Lam. 4:8; 5:10).
Red, applied to blood (2 Kings 3;22), a heifer (Num. 19:2), pottage of lentils (Gen. 25:30), a horse (Zech. 1:8), wine (Prov. 23:31), the complexion (Gen. 25:25; Cant. 5:10). This colour is symbolical of bloodshed (Zech. 6:2; Rev. 6:4; 12:3).
Purple, a colour obtained from the secretion of a species of shell-fish (the Murex trunculus) which was found in the Mediterranean, and particularly on the coasts of Phoenicia and Asia Minor. The colouring matter in each separate shell-fish amounted to only a single drop, and hence the great value of this dye. Robes of this colour were worn by kings (Judg. 8:26) and high officers (Esther 8:15). They were also worn by the wealthy and luxurious (Jer. 10:9; Ezek. 27:7; Luke 16:19; Rev. 17:4). With this colour was associated the idea of royalty and majesty (Judg. 8:26; Cant. 3:10; 7:5; Dan. 5:7, 16,29).
Blue. This colour was also procured from a species of shell-fish, the chelzon of the Hebrews, and the Helix ianthina of modern naturalists. The tint was emblematic of the sky, the deep dark hue of the Eastern sky. This colour was used in the same way as purple. The ribbon and fringe of the Hebrew dress were of this colour (Num. 15:38). The loops of the curtains (Ex. 26:4), the lace of the high priest's breastplate, the robe of the ephod, and the lace on his mitre, were blue (Ex. 28:28, 31, 37).
Scarlet, or Crimson. In Isa. 1:18 a Hebrew word is used which denotes the worm or grub whence this dye was procured. In Gen. 38:28,30, the word so rendered means "to shine," and expresses the brilliancy of the colour. The small parasitic insects from which this dye was obtained somewhat resembled the cochineal which is found in Eastern countries. It is called by naturalists Coccus ilics. The dye was procured from the female grub alone. The only natural object to which this colour is applied in Scripture is the lips, which are likened to a scarlet thread (Cant. 4:3). Scarlet robes were worn by the rich and luxurious (2 Sam. 1:24; Prov. 31:21; Jer. 4:30. Rev. 17:4). It was also the hue of the warrior's dress (Nah. 2:3; Isa. 9:5). The Phoenicians excelled in the art of dyeing this colour (2 Chr. 2:7).
These four colours--white, purple, blue, and scarlet--were used in the textures of the tabernacle curtains (Ex. 26:1, 31, 36), and also in the high priest's ephod, girdle, and breastplate (Ex. 28:5, 6, 8, 15). Scarlet thread is mentioned in connection with the rites of cleansing the leper (Lev. 14:4, 6, 51) and of burning the red heifer (Num. 19:6). It was a crimson thread that Rahab was to bind on her window as a sign that she was to be saved alive (Josh. 2:18; 6:25) when the city of Jericho was taken.
Vermilion, the red sulphuret of mercury, or cinnabar; a colour used for drawing the figures of idols on the walls of temples (Ezek. 23:14), or for decorating the walls and beams of houses (Jer. 22:14).
Comforter - the designation of the Holy Ghost (John 14:16, 26; 15:26; 16:7; R.V. marg., "or Advocate, or Helper; Gr. paracletos"). The same Greek word thus rendered is translated "Advocate" in 1 John 2:1 as applicable to Christ. It means properly "one who is summoned to the side of another" to help him in a court of justice by defending him, "one who is summoned to plead a cause." "Advocate" is the proper rendering of the word in every case where it occurs.
It is worthy of notice that although Paul nowhere uses the word paracletos, he yet presents the idea it embodies when he speaks of the "intercession" both of Christ and the Spirit (Rom. 8:27, 34).
Coming of Christ - (1) with reference to his first advent "in the fulness of the time" (1 John 5:20; 2 John 1:7), or (2) with reference to his coming again the second time at the last day (Acts 1:11; 3:20, 21; 1 Thess. 4:15; 2 Tim. 4:1; Heb. 9:28).
The expression is used metaphorically of the introduction of the gospel into any place (John 15:22; Eph. 2:17), the visible establishment of his kingdom in the world (Matt. 16:28), the conferring on his people of the peculiar tokens of his love (John 14:18, 23, 28), and his executing judgment on the wicked (2 Thess. 2:8).
Commandments, the Ten - (Ex. 34:28; Deut. 10:4, marg. "ten words") i.e., the Decalogue (q.v.), is a summary of the immutable moral law. These commandments were first given in their written form to the people of Israel when they were encamped at Sinai, about fifty days after they came out of Egypt (Ex. 19:10-25). They were written by the finger of God on two tables of stone. The first tables were broken by Moses when he brought them down from the mount (32:19), being thrown by him on the ground. At the command of God he took up into the mount two other tables, and God wrote on them "the words that were on the first tables" (34:1). These tables were afterwards placed in the ark of the covenant (Deut. 10:5; 1 Kings 8:9). Their subsequent history is unknown. They are as a whole called "the covenant" (Deut. 4:13), and "the tables of the covenant" (9:9, 11; Heb. 9:4), and "the testimony."
They are obviously "ten" in number, but their division is not fixed, hence different methods of numbering them have been adopted. The Jews make the "Preface" one of the commandments, and then combine the first and second. The Roman Catholics and Lutherans combine the first and second and divide the tenth into two. The Jews and Josephus divide them equally. The Lutherans and Roman Catholics refer three commandments to the first table and seven to the second. The Greek and Reformed Churches refer four to the first and six to the second table. The Samaritans add to the second that Gerizim is the mount of worship.
Communion - fellowship with God (Gen. 18:17-33; Ex. 33:9-11; Num. 12:7, 8), between Christ and his people (John 14:23), by the Spirit (2 Cor. 13:14; Phil. 2:1), of believers with one another (Eph. 4:1-6). The Lord's Supper is so called (1 Cor. 10:16, 17), because in it there is fellowship between Christ and his disciples, and of the disciples with one another.
Conaniah - whom Jehovah hath set, a Levite placed over the tithes brought into the temple (2 Chr. 35:9).
Concision - (Gr. katatome; i.e., "mutilation"), a term used by Paul contemptuously of those who were zealots for circumcision (Phil. 3:2). Instead of the warning, "Beware of the circumcision" (peritome) i.e., of the party who pressed on Gentile converts the necessity of still observing that ordinance, he says, "Beware of the concision;" as much as to say, "This circumcision which they vaunt of is in Christ only as the gashings and mutilations of idolatrous heathen."
Concubine - in the Bible denotes a female conjugally united to a man, but in a relation inferior to that of a wife. Among the early Jews, from various causes, the difference between a wife and a concubine was less marked than it would be amongst us. The concubine was a wife of secondary rank. There are various laws recorded providing for their protection (Ex. 21:7; Deut. 21:10-14), and setting limits to the relation they sustained to the household to which they belonged (Gen. 21:14; 25:6). They had no authority in the family, nor could they share in the household government.
The immediate cause of concubinage might be gathered from the conjugal histories of Abraham and Jacob (Gen. 16;30). But in process of time the custom of concubinage degenerated, and laws were made to restrain and regulate it (Ex. 21:7-9).
Christianity has restored the sacred institution of marriage to its original character, and concubinage is ranked with the sins of fornication and adultery (Matt. 19:5-9; 1 Cor. 7:2).
Concupiscence - desire, Rom. 7:8 (R.V., "coveting"); Col. 3:5 (R.V., "desire"). The "lust of concupiscence" (1 Thess. 4:5; R.V., "passion of lust") denotes evil desire, indwelling sin.
Conduit - a water-course or channel (Job 38:25). The "conduit of the upper pool" (Isa. 7:3) was formed by Hezekiah for the purpose of conveying the waters from the upper pool in the valley of Gihon to the west side of the city of David (2 Kings 18:17; 20:20; 2 Chr. 32:30). In carrying out this work he stopped "the waters of the fountains which were without the city" i.e., "the upper water-course of Gihon", and conveyed it down from the west through a canal into the city, so that in case of a siege the inhabitants of the city might have a supply of water, which would thus be withdrawn from the enemy.
There are also the remains of a conduit which conducted water from the so-called "Pools of Solomon," beyond Bethlehem, into the city. Water is still conveyed into the city from the fountains which supplied these pools by a channel which crosses the valley of Hinnom.
Coney - (Heb. shaphan; i.e., "the hider"), an animal which inhabits the mountain gorges and the rocky districts of Arabia Petraea and the Holy Land. "The conies are but a feeble folk, yet make they their houses in the rocks" (Prov. 30:26; Ps. 104:18). They are gregarious, and "exceeding wise" (Prov. 30:24), and are described as chewing the cud (Lev. 11:5; Deut. 14:7).
The animal intended by this name is known among naturalists as the Hyrax Syriacus. It is neither a ruminant nor a rodent, but is regarded as akin to the rhinoceros. When it is said to "chew the cud," the Hebrew word so used does not necessarily imply the possession of a ruminant stomach. "The lawgiver speaks according to appearances; and no one can watch the constant motion of the little creature's jaws, as it sits continually working its teeth, without recognizing the naturalness of the expression" (Tristram, Natural History of the Bible). It is about the size and color of a rabbit, though clumsier in structure, and without a tail. Its feet are not formed for digging, and therefore it has its home not in burrows but in the clefts of the rocks. "Coney" is an obsolete English word for "rabbit."
Confection - (Ex. 30:35, "ointment" in ver. 25; R.V., "perfume"). The Hebrew word so rendered is derived from a root meaning to compound oil and perfume.
Confectionaries - only in 1 Sam. 8:13, those who make confections, i.e., perfumers, who compound species and perfumes.
Confession - (1) An open profession of faith (Luke 12:8). (2.) An acknowledment of sins to God (Lev. 16:21; Ezra 9:5-15; Dan. 9:3-12), and to a neighbour whom we have wronged (James 5:16; Matt. 18:15).
Congregation - (Heb. kahal), the Hebrew people collectively as a holy community (Num. 15:15). Every circumcised Hebrew from twenty years old and upward was a member of the congregation. Strangers resident in the land, if circumcised, were, with certain exceptions (Ex. 12:19; Num. 9:14; Deut. 23:1-3), admitted to the privileges of citizenship, and spoken of as members of the congregation (Ex. 12:19; Num. 9:14; 15:15). The congregation were summonded together by the sound of two silver trumpets, and they met at the door of the tabernacle (Num. 10:3). These assemblies were convened for the purpose of engaging in solemn religious services (Ex. 12:27; Num. 25:6; Joel 2:15), or of receiving new commandments (Ex. 19:7, 8). The elders, who were summonded by the sound of one trumpet (Num. 10:4), represented on various occasions the whole congregation (Ex. 3:16; 12:21; 17:5; 24:1).
After the conquest of Canaan, the people were assembled only on occasions of the highest national importance (Judg. 20; 2 Chr. 30:5; 34:29; 1 Sam. 10:17; 2 Sam. 5:1-5; 1 Kings 12:20; 2 Kings 11:19; 21:24; 23:30). In subsequent times the congregation was represented by the Sanhedrim; and the name synagogue, applied in the Septuagint version exclusively to the congregation, came to be used to denote the places of worship established by the Jews.
In Acts 13:43, where alone it occurs in the New Testament, it is the same word as that rendered "synagogue" (q.v.) in ver. 42, and is so rendered in ver. 43 in R.V.
Congregation, mount of the - (Isa. 14:13), has been supposed to refer to the place where God promised to meet with his people (Ex. 25:22; 29:42, 43) i.e., the mount of the Divine presence, Mount Zion. But here the king of Babylon must be taken as expressing himself according to his own heathen notions, and not according to those of the Jews. The "mount of the congregation" will therefore in this case mean the northern mountain, supposed by the Babylonians to be the meeting-place of their gods. In the Babylonian inscriptions mention is made of a mountain which is described as "the mighty mountain of Bel, whose head rivals heaven, whose root is the holy deep." This mountain was regarded in their mythology as the place where the gods had their seat.
Conscience - that faculty of the mind, or inborn sense of right and wrong, by which we judge of the moral character of human conduct. It is common to all men. Like all our other faculties, it has been perverted by the Fall (John 16:2; Acts 26:9; Rom. 2:15). It is spoken of as "defiled" (Titus 1:15), and "seared" (1 Tim. 4:2). A "conscience void of offence" is to be sought and cultivated (Acts 24:16; Rom. 9:1; 2 Cor. 1:12; 1 Tim. 1:5, 19; 1 Pet. 3:21).
Consecration - the devoting or setting apart of anything to the worship or service of God. The race of Abraham and the tribe of Levi were thus consecrated (Ex. 13:2, 12, 15; Num. 3:12). The Hebrews devoted their fields and cattle, and sometimes the spoils of war, to the Lord (Lev. 27:28, 29). According to the Mosaic law the first-born both of man and beast were consecrated to God.
In the New Testament, Christians are regarded as consecrated to the Lord (1 Pet. 2:9).
Consolation of Israel - a name for the Messiah in common use among the Jews, probably suggested by Isa. 12:1; 49:13. The Greek word thus rendered (Luke 2:25, paraklesis) is kindred to that translated "Comforter" in John 14:16, etc., parakletos.
Constellation - a cluster of stars, or stars which appear to be near each other in the heavens, and which astronomers have reduced to certain figures (as the "Great Bear," the "Bull," etc.) for the sake of classification and of memory. In Isa. 13:10, where this word only occurs, it is the rendering of the Hebrew kesil, i.e., "fool." This was the Hebrew name of the constellation Orion (Job 9:9; 38:31), a constellation which represented Nimrod, the symbol of folly and impiety. The word some interpret by "the giant" in this place, "some heaven-daring rebel who was chained to the sky for his impiety."
Contentment - a state of mind in which one's desires are confined to his lot whatever it may be (1 Tim. 6:6; 2 Cor. 9:8). It is opposed to envy (James 3:16), avarice (Heb. 13:5), ambition (Prov. 13:10), anxiety (Matt. 6:25, 34), and repining (1 Cor. 10:10). It arises from the inward disposition, and is the offspring of humility, and of an intelligent consideration of the rectitude and benignity of divine providence (Ps. 96:1, 2; 145), the greatness of the divine promises (2 Pet. 1:4), and our own unworthiness (Gen. 32:10); as well as from the view the gospel opens up to us of rest and peace hereafter (Rom. 5:2).
Conversation - generally the goings out and in of social intercourse (Eph. 2:3; 4:22; R.V., "manner of life"); one's deportment or course of life. This word is never used in Scripture in the sense of verbal communication from one to another (Ps. 50:23; Heb. 13:5). In Phil. 1:27 and 3:20, a different Greek word is used. It there means one's relations to a community as a citizen, i.e., citizenship.
Conversion - the turning of a sinner to God (Acts 15:3). In a general sense the heathen are said to be "converted" when they abandon heathenism and embrace the Christian faith; and in a more special sense men are converted when, by the influence of divine grace in their souls, their whole life is changed, old things pass away, and all things become new (Acts 26:18). Thus we speak of the conversion of the Philippian jailer (16:19-34), of Paul (9:1-22), of the Ethiopian treasurer (8:26-40), of Cornelius (10), of Lydia (16:13-15), and others. (See REGENERATION.)
Convocation - a meeting of a religious character as distinguished from congregation, which was more general, dealing with political and legal matters. Hence it is called an "holy convocation." Such convocations were the Sabbaths (Lev. 23:2, 3), the Passover (Ex. 12:16; Lev. 23:7, 8; Num. 28:25), Pentecost (Lev. 23:21), the feast of Trumpets (Lev. 23:24; Num. 29:1), the feast of Weeks (Num. 28:26), and the feast of Tabernacles (Lev. 23:35, 36). The great fast, the annual day of atonement, was "the holy convocation" (Lev. 23:27; Num. 29:7).
Cook - a person employed to perform culinary service. In early times among the Hebrews cooking was performed by the mistress of the household (Gen. 18:2-6; Judg. 6:19), and the process was very expeditiously performed (Gen. 27:3, 4, 9, 10). Professional cooks were afterwards employed (1 Sam. 8:13; 9:23). Few animals, as a rule, were slaughtered (other than sacrifices), except for purposes of hospitality (Gen. 18:7; Luke 15:23). The paschal lamb was roasted over a fire (Ex. 12:8, 9; 2Chr. 35:13). Cooking by boiling was the usual method adopted (Lev. 8:31; Ex. 16:23). No cooking took place on the Sabbath day (Ex. 35:3).
Coos - (written Cos in the R.V.), a small island, one of the Sporades in the Aegean Sea, in the north-west of Rhodes, off the coast of Caria. Paul on his return from his third missionary journey, passed the night here after sailing from Miletus (Acts 21:1). It is now called Stanchio.
Copper - derived from the Greek kupros (the island of Cyprus), called "Cyprian brass," occurs only in the Authorized Version in Ezra 8:27. Elsewhere the Hebrew word (nehosheth) is improperly rendered "brass," and sometimes "steel" (2 Sam. 22:35; Jer. 15:12). The "bow of steel" (Job 20:24; Ps. 18:34) should have been "bow of copper" (or "brass," as in the R.V.). The vessels of "fine copper" of Ezra 8:27 were probably similar to those of "bright brass" mentioned in 1 Kings 7:45; Dan. 10:6.
Tubal-cain was the first artificer in brass and iron (Gen. 4:22). Hiram was noted as a worker in brass (1 Kings 7:14). Copper abounded in Palestine (Deut. 8:9; Isa. 60:17; 1 Chr. 22:3, 14). All sorts of vessels in the tabernacle and the temple were made of it (Lev. 6:28; Num. 16:39; 2 Chr. 4:16; Ezra 8:27); also weapons of war (1 Sam. 17:5, 6, 38; 2 Sam. 21:16). Iron is mentioned only four times (Gen. 4:22; Lev. 26:19; Num. 31:22; 35:16) in the first four books of Moses, while copper (rendered "brass") is mentioned forty times.
We find mention of Alexander (q.v.), a "coppersmith" of Ephesus (2 Tim. 4:14).
Cor - This Hebrew word, untranslated, denotes a round vessel used as a measure both for liquids and solids. It was equal to one homer, and contained ten ephahs in dry and ten baths in liquid measure (Ezek. 45:14). The Rabbins estimated the cor at forty-five gallons, while Josephus estimated it at about eighty-seven. In 1 Kings 4:22; 5:11; 2 Chr. 2:10; 27:5, the original word is rendered "measure."
Coral - Heb. ramoth, meaning "heights;" i.e., "high-priced" or valuable things, or, as some suppose, "that which grows high," like a tree (Job 28:18; Ezek. 27:16), according to the Rabbins, red coral, which was in use for ornaments.
The coral is a cretaceous marine product, the deposit by minute polypous animals of calcareous matter in cells in which the animal lives. It is of numberless shapes as it grows, but usually is branched like a tree. Great coral reefs and coral islands abound in the Red Sea, whence probably the Hebrews derived their knowledge of it. It is found of different colours, white, black, and red. The red, being esteemed the most precious, was used, as noticed above, for ornamental purposes.
Corban - a Hebrew word adopted into the Greek of the New Testament and left untranslated. It occurs only once (Mark 7:11). It means a gift or offering consecrated to God. Anything over which this word was once pronounced was irrevocably dedicated to the temple. Land, however, so dedicated might be redeemed before the year of jubilee (Lev. 27:16-24). Our Lord condemns the Pharisees for their false doctrine, inasmuch as by their traditions they had destroyed the commandment which requires children to honour their father and mother, teaching them to find excuse from helping their parents by the device of pronouncing "Corban" over their goods, thus reserving them to their own selfish use.
Cord - frequently used in its proper sense, for fastening a tent (Ex. 35:18; 39:40), yoking animals to a cart (Isa. 5:18), binding prisoners (Judg. 15:13; Ps. 2:3; 129:4), and measuring ground (2 Sam. 8;2; Ps. 78:55). Figuratively, death is spoken of as the giving way of the tent-cord (Job 4:21. "Is not their tent-cord plucked up?" R.V.). To gird one's self with a cord was a token of sorrow and humiliation. To stretch a line over a city meant to level it with the ground (Lam. 2:8). The "cords of sin" are the consequences or fruits of sin (Prov. 5:22). A "threefold cord" is a symbol of union (Eccl. 4:12). The "cords of a man" (Hos. 11:4) means that men employ, in inducing each other, methods such as are suitable to men, and not "cords" such as oxen are led by. Isaiah (5:18) says, "Woe unto them that draw iniquity with cords of vanity, and sin as it were with a cart rope." This verse is thus given in the Chaldee paraphrase: "Woe to those who begin to sin by little and little, drawing sin by cords of vanity: these sins grow and increase till they are strong and are like a cart rope." This may be the true meaning. The wicked at first draw sin with a slender cord; but by-and-by their sins increase, and they are drawn after them by a cart rope. Henderson in his commentary says: "The meaning is that the persons described were not satisfied with ordinary modes of provoking the Deity, and the consequent ordinary approach of his vengeance, but, as it were, yoked themselves in the harness of iniquity, and, putting forth all their strength, drew down upon themselves, with accelerated speed, the load of punishment which their sins deserved."
Coriander - Heb. gad, (Ex. 16:31; Num. 11:7), seed to which the manna is likened in its form and colour. It is the Coriandrum sativum of botanists, an umbelliferous annual plant with a round stalk, about two feet high. It is widely cultivated in Eastern countries and in the south of Europe for the sake of its seeds, which are in the form of a little ball of the size of a peppercorn. They are used medicinally and as a spice. The Greek name of this plant is korion or koriannon, whence the name "coriander."