Kirjath-arba - city of Arba, the original name of Hebron (q.v.), so called from the name of its founder, one of the Anakim (Gen. 23:2; 35:27; Josh. 15:13). It was given to Caleb by Joshua as his portion. The Jews interpret the name as meaning "the city of the four", i.e., of Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, and Adam, who were all, as they allege, buried there.
Kirjath-huzoth - city of streets, Num. 22:39, a Moabite city, which some identify with Kirjathaim. Balak here received and entertained Balaam, whom he had invited from Pethor, among the "mountains of the east," beyond the Euphrates, to lay his ban upon the Israelites, whose progress he had no hope otherwise of arresting. It was probably from the summit of Attarus, the high place near the city, that the soothsayer first saw the encampments of Israel.
Kirjath-jearim - city of jaars; i.e., of woods or forests, a Gibeonite town (Josh. 9:17) on the border of Benjamin, to which tribe it was assigned (18:15, 28). The ark was brought to this place (1 Sam. 7:1, 2) from Beth-shemesh and put in charge of Abinadab, a Levite. Here it remained till it was removed by David to Jerusalem (2 Sam. 6:2, 3, 12; 1 Chr. 15:1-29; comp. Ps. 132). It was also called Baalah (Josh. 15:9) and Kirjath-baal (60). It has been usually identified with Kuriet el-'Enab (i.e., "city of grapes"), among the hills, about 8 miles north-east of 'Ain Shems (i.e., Beth-shemesh). The opinion, however, that it is to be identified with 'Erma, 4 miles east of 'Ain Shems, on the edge of the valley of Sorek, seems to be better supported.
The words of Ps. 132:6, "We found it in the fields of the wood," refer to the sojourn of the ark at Kirjath-jearim. "Wood" is here the rendering of the Hebrew word jaar, which is the singular of jearim.
Kirjath-sannah - city of the sannah; i.e., of the palm(?), Josh. 15:49; the same as Kirjath-sepher (15:16; Judg. 1:11) and Debir (q.v.), a Canaanitish royal city included in Judah (Josh. 10:38; 15:49), and probably the chief seat of learning among the Hittites. It was about 12 miles to the south-west of Hebron.
Kirjath-sepher - city of books, Josh. 15:15; same as Kirjath-sannah (q.v.), now represented by the valley of ed-Dhaberiyeh, south-west of Hebron. The name of this town is an evidence that the Canaanites were acquainted with writing and books. "The town probably contained a noted school, or was the site of an oracle and the residence of some learned priest." The "books" were probably engraved stones or bricks.
Kir of Moab - Isa. 15:1. The two strongholds of Moab were Ar and Kir, which latter is probably the Kir-haraseth (16:7) following.
Kish - a bow. (1.) A Levite of the family of Merari (1 Chr. 23:21; 24:29).
(2.) A Benjamite of Jerusalem (1 Chr. 8:30; 9:36).
(3.) A Levite in the time of Hezekiah (2 Chr. 29:12).
(4.) The great-grandfather of Mordecai (Esther 2:5).
(5.) A Benjamite, the son of Abiel, and father of king Saul (1 Sam. 9:1, 3; 10:11, 21; 14:51; 2 Sam. 21:14). All that is recorded of him is that he sent his son Saul in search of his asses that had strayed, and that he was buried in Zelah. Called Cis, Acts 13:21 (R.V., Kish).
Kishion - hardness, a city of Issachar assigned to the Gershonite Levites (Josh. 19:20), the same as Kishon (21:28).
Kishon - winding, a winter torrent of Central Palestine, which rises about the roots of Tabor and Gilboa, and passing in a northerly direction through the plains of Esdraelon and Acre, falls into the Mediterranean at the north-eastern corner of the bay of Acre, at the foot of Carmel. It is the drain by which the waters of the plain of Esdraelon and of the mountains that surround it find their way to the sea. It bears the modern name of Nahr el-Mokattah, i.e., "the river of slaughter" (comp. 1 Kings 18:40). In the triumphal song of Deborah (Judg. 5:21) it is spoken of as "that ancient river," either (1) because it had flowed on for ages, or (2), according to the Targum, because it was "the torrent in which were shown signs and wonders to Israel of old;" or (3) probably the reference is to the exploits in that region among the ancient Canaanites, for the adjoining plain of Esdraelon was the great battle-field of Palestine.
This was the scene of the defeat of Sisera (Judg. 4:7, 13), and of the destruction of the prophets of Baal by Elijah (1 Kings 18:40). "When the Kishon was at its height, it would be, partly on account of its quicksands, as impassable as the ocean itself to a retreating army."
Kiss - of affection (Gen. 27:26, 27; 29:13; Luke 7:38, 45); reconciliation (Gen. 33:4; 2 Sam. 14:33); leave-taking (Gen. 31:28,55; Ruth 1:14; 2 Sam. 19:39); homage (Ps. 2:12; 1 Sam. 10:1); spoken of as between parents and children (Gen. 27:26; 31:28, 55; 48:10; 50:1; Ex. 18:7; Ruth 1:9, 14); between male relatives (Gen. 29:13; 33:4; 45:15). It accompanied social worship as a symbol of brotherly love (Rom. 16:16; 1 Cor. 16:20; 2 Cor. 13:12; 1 Thess. 5:26; 1 Pet. 5:14). The worship of idols was by kissing the image or the hand toward the image (1 Kings 19:18; Hos. 13:2).
Kite - an unclean and keen-sighted bird of prey (Lev. 11:14; Deut. 14:13). The Hebrew word used, 'ayet, is rendered "vulture" in Job 28:7 in Authorized Version, "falcon" in Revised Version. It is probably the red kite (Milvus regalis), a bird of piercing sight and of soaring habits found all over Palestine.
Kithlish - a man's wall, a town in the plain of Judah (Josh. 15:40). It has been identified with Jelameh.
Kitron - knotty, a city of Zebulun (Judg. 1:30), called also Kattath (Josh. 19:15); supposed to be "Cana of Galilee."
Kittim - (Gen. 10:4).
Knead - to prepare dough in the process of baking (Gen. 18:6; 1 Sam. 28:24; Hos. 7:4).
Kneading-trough - the vessel in which the dough, after being mixed and leavened, was left to swell or ferment (Ex. 8:3; 12:34; Deut. 28:5, 7). The dough in the vessels at the time of the Exodus was still unleavened, because the people were compelled to withdraw in haste.
Knife - (1.) Heb. hereb, "the waster," a sharp instrument for circumcision (Josh. 5:2, 3, lit. "knives of flint;" comp. Ex. 4:25); a razor (Ezek. 5:1); a graving tool (Ex. 20:25); an axe (Ezek. 26:9).
(2.) Heb. maakeleth, a large knife for slaughtering and cutting up food (Gen. 22:6, 10; Prov. 30:14).
(3.) Heb. sakkin, a knife for any purpose, a table knife (Prov. 23:2).
(4.) Heb. mahalaph, a butcher's knife for slaughtering the victims offered in sacrifice (Ezra 1:9).
(5.) Smaller knives (Heb. ta'ar, Jer. 36:26) were used for sharpening pens. The pruning-knives mentioned in Isa. 18:5 (Heb. mizmaroth) were probably curved knives.
Knock - "Though Orientals are very jealous of their privacy, they never knock when about to enter your room, but walk in without warning or ceremony. It is nearly impossible to teach an Arab servant to knock at your door. They give warning at the outer gate either by calling or knocking. To stand and call is a very common and respectful mode. Thus Moses commanded the holder of a pledge to stand without and call to the owner to come forth (Deut. 24:10). This was to avoid the violent intrusion of cruel creditors. Peter stood knocking at the outer door (Acts 12:13, 16), and the three men sent to Joppa by Cornelius made inquiry and 'stood before the gate' (10:17, 18). The idea is that the guard over your privacy is to be placed at the entrance."
Knocking is used as a sign of importunity (Matt. 7:7, 8; Luke 13:25), and of the coming of Christ (Luke 12:36; Rev. 3:20).
Knop - some architectural ornament. (1.) Heb. kaphtor (Ex. 25:31-36), occurring in the description of the candlestick. It was an ornamental swell beneath the cups of the candlestick, probably an imitation of the fruit of the almond.
(2.) Heb. peka'im, found only in 1 Kings 6:18 and 7:24, an ornament resembling a small gourd or an egg, on the cedar wainscot in the temple and on the castings on the brim of the brazen sea.
Koa - he-camel, occurs only in Ezek. 23:23, some province or place in the Babylonian empire, used in this passage along with Shoa (q.v.).
Kohath - assembly, the second son of Levi, and father of Amram (Gen. 46:11). He came down to Egypt with Jacob, and lived to the age of one hundred and thirty-three years (Ex. 6:18).
Kohathites - the descendants of Kohath. They formed the first of the three divisions of the Levites (Ex. 6:16, 18; Num. 3:17). In the journeyings of the Israelites they had the charge of the most holy portion of the vessels of the tabernacle, including the ark (Num. 4). Their place in the marching and encampment was south of the tabernacle (Num. 3:29, 31). Their numbers at different times are specified (3:28; 4:36; 26:57, 62). Samuel was of this division.
Korah - ice, hail. (1.) The third son of Esau, by Aholibamah (Gen. 36:14; 1 Chr. 1:35).
(2.) A Levite, the son of Izhar, the brother of Amram, the father of Moses and Aaron (Ex. 6:21). The institution of the Aaronic priesthood and the Levitical service at Sinai was a great religious revolution. The old priesthood of the heads of families passed away. This gave rise to murmurings and discontent, while the Israelites were encamped at Kadesh for the first time, which came to a head in a rebellion against Moses and Aaron, headed by Korah, Dathan, and Abiram. Two hundred and fifty princes, "men of renown" i.e., well-known men from among the other tribes, joined this conspiracy. The whole company demanded of Moses and Aaron that the old state of things should be restored, alleging that "they took too much upon them" (Num. 16:1-3). On the morning after the outbreak, Korah and his associates presented themselves at the door of the tabernacle, and "took every man his censer, and put fire in them, and laid incense thereon." But immediately "fire from the Lord" burst forth and destroyed them all (Num. 16:35). Dathan and Abiram "came out and stood in the door of their tents, and their wives, and their sons, and their little children," and it came to pass "that the ground clave asunder that was under them; and the earth opened her mouth and swallowed them up." A plague thereafter began among the people who sympathized in the rebellion, and was only stayed by Aaron's appearing between the living and the dead, and making "an atonement for the people" (16:47).
The descendants of the sons of Korah who did not participate in the rebellion afterwards rose to eminence in the Levitical service.
Korahites - that portion of the Kohathites that descended from Korah. (1.) They were an important branch of the singers of the Kohathite division (2 Chr. 20:19). There are eleven psalms (42-49; 84; 85; 87; 88) dedicated to the sons of Korah.
(2.) Some of the sons of Korah also were "porters" of the temple (1 Chr. 9:17-19); one of them was over "things that were made in the pans" (31), i.e., the baking in pans for the meat-offering (Lev. 2:5).
Kore - partridge. (1.) A Levite and temple-warder of the Korahites, the son of Asaph. He was father of Shallum and Meshelemiah, temple-porters (1 Chr. 9:19; 26:1).
(2.) A Levitical porter at the east gate of the temple (2 Chr. 31:14).
(3.) In 1 Chr. 26:19 the word should be "Korahites," as in the Revised Version.
Korhites - a Levitical family descended from Korah (Ex. 6:24; 1 Chr. 12:6; 26:1; 2 Chr. 20:19).
Koz - thorn. (1.) A descendant of Judah. 1 Chr. 4:8, "Coz;" R.V., "Hakkoz."
(2.) A priest, the head of the seventh division of the priests (Ezra 2:61; Neh. 3:4, 21; 7:63). In 1 Chr. 24:10 the word has the article prefixed, and it is taken as a part of the word "Hakkoz."
Laban - white. (1.) The son of Bethuel, who was the son of Nahor, Abraham's brother. He lived at Haran in Mesopotamia. His sister Rebekah was Isaac's wife (Gen. 24). Jacob, one of the sons of this marriage, fled to the house of Laban, whose daughters Leah and Rachel (ch. 29) he eventually married.
(2.) A city in the Arabian desert in the route of the Israelites (Deut. 1:1), probably identical with Libnah (Num. 33:20).
Lachish - impregnable, a royal Canaanitish city in the Shephelah, or maritime plain of Palestine (Josh. 10:3, 5; 12:11). It was taken and destroyed by the Israelites (Josh. 10:31-33). It afterwards became, under Rehoboam, one of the strongest fortresses of Judah (2 Chr. 10:9). It was assaulted and probably taken by Sennacherib (2 Kings 18:14, 17; 19:8; Isa. 36:2). An account of this siege is given on some slabs found in the chambers of the palace of Koyunjik, and now in the British Museum. The inscription has been deciphered as follows:, "Sennacherib, the mighty king, king of the country of Assyria, sitting on the throne of judgment before the city of Lachish: I gave permission for its slaughter."
Lachish has been identified with Tell-el-Hesy, where a cuneiform tablet has been found, containing a letter supposed to be from Amenophis at Amarna in reply to one of the Amarna tablets sent by Zimrida from Lachish. This letter is from the chief of Atim (=Etam, 1 Chr. 4:32) to the chief of Lachish, in which the writer expresses great alarm at the approach of marauders from the Hebron hills. "They have entered the land," he says, "to lay waste...strong is he who has come down. He lays waste." This letter shows that "the communication by tablets in cuneiform script was not only usual in writing to Egypt, but in the internal correspondence of the country. The letter, though not so important in some ways as the Moabite stone and the Siloam text, is one of the most valuable discoveries ever made in Palestine" (Conder's Tell Amarna Tablets, p. 134).
Excavations at Lachish are still going on, and among other discoveries is that of an iron blast-furnace, with slag and ashes, which is supposed to have existed B.C. 1500. If the theories of experts are correct, the use of the hot-air blast instead of cold air (an improvement in iron manufacture patented by Neilson in 1828) was known fifteen hundred years before Christ.
Ladder - occurs only once, in the account of Jacob's vision (Gen. 28:12).
Laish - a lion. (1.) A city of the Sidonians, in the extreme north of Palestine (Judg. 18:7, 14); called also Leshem (Josh. 19:47) and Dan (Judg. 18:7, 29; Jer. 8:16). It lay near the sources of the Jordan, about 4 miles from Paneas. The restless and warlike tribe of Dan (q.v.), looking out for larger possessions, invaded this country and took Laish with its territory. It is identified with the ruin Tell-el-Kady, "the mound of the judge," to the north of the Waters of Merom (Josh. 11:5).
(2.) A place mentioned in Isa. 10:30. It has been supposed to be the modern el-Isawiyeh, about a mile north-east of Jerusalem.
(3.) The father of Phalti (1 Sam. 25:44).
Lama - (Matt. 27:46), a Hebrew word meaning why, quoted from Ps. 22:1.
Lamb - (1.) Heb. kebes, a male lamb from the first to the third year. Offered daily at the morning and the evening sacrifice (Ex. 29:38-42), on the Sabbath day (Num. 28:9), at the feast of the New Moon (28:11), of Trumpets (29:2), of Tabernacles (13-40), of Pentecost (Lev. 23:18-20), and of the Passover (Ex. 12:5), and on many other occasions (1 Chr. 29:21; 2 Chr. 29:21; Lev. 9:3; 14:10-25).
(2.) Heb. taleh, a young sucking lamb (1 Sam. 7:9; Isa. 65:25). In the symbolical language of Scripture the lamb is the type of meekness and innocence (Isa. 11:6; 65:25; Luke 10:3; John 21:15).
The lamb was a symbol of Christ (Gen. 4:4; Ex. 12:3; 29:38; Isa. 16:1; 53:7; John 1:36; Rev. 13:8).
Christ is called the Lamb of God (John 1:29, 36), as the great sacrifice of which the former sacrifices were only types (Num. 6:12; Lev. 14:12-17; Isa. 53:7; 1 Cor. 5:7).
Lamech - the strikerdown; the wild man. (1.) The fifth in descent from Cain. He was the first to violate the primeval ordinance of marriage (Gen. 4:18-24). His address to his two wives, Adah and Zillah (4:23, 24), is the only extant example of antediluvian poetry. It has been called "Lamech's sword-song." He was "rude and ruffianly," fearing neither God nor man. With him the curtain falls on the race of Cain. We know nothing of his descendants.
(2.) The seventh in descent from Seth, being the only son of Methuselah. Noah was the oldest of his several sons (Gen. 5:25-31; Luke 3:36).
Lamentation - (Heb. qinah), an elegy or dirge. The first example of this form of poetry is the lament of David over Saul and Jonathan (2 Sam. 1:17-27). It was a frequent accompaniment of mourning (Amos 8:10). In 2 Sam. 3:33, 34 is recorded David's lament over Abner. Prophecy sometimes took the form of a lament when it predicted calamity (Ezek. 27:2, 32; 28:12; 32:2, 16).
Lamentations, Book of - called in the Hebrew canon 'Ekhah, meaning "How," being the formula for the commencement of a song of wailing. It is the first word of the book (see 2 Sam. 1:19-27). The LXX. adopted the name rendered "Lamentations" (Gr. threnoi = Heb. qinoth) now in common use, to denote the character of the book, in which the prophet mourns over the desolations brought on the city and the holy land by Chaldeans. In the Hebrew Bible it is placed among the Khethubim.
As to its authorship, there is no room for hesitancy in following the LXX. and the Targum in ascribing it to Jeremiah. The spirit, tone, language, and subject-matter are in accord with the testimony of tradition in assigning it to him. According to tradition, he retired after the destruction of Jerusalem by Nebuchadnezzar to a cavern outside the Damascus gate, where he wrote this book. That cavern is still pointed out. "In the face of a rocky hill, on the western side of the city, the local belief has placed 'the grotto of Jeremiah.' There, in that fixed attitude of grief which Michael Angelo has immortalized, the prophet may well be supposed to have mourned the fall of his country" (Stanley, Jewish Church).
The book consists of five separate poems. In chapter 1 the prophet dwells on the manifold miseries oppressed by which the city sits as a solitary widow weeping sorely. In chapter 2 these miseries are described in connection with the national sins that had caused them. Chapter 3 speaks of hope for the people of God. The chastisement would only be for their good; a better day would dawn for them. Chapter 4 laments the ruin and desolation that had come upon the city and temple, but traces it only to the people's sins. Chapter 5 is a prayer that Zion's reproach may be taken away in the repentance and recovery of the people.
The first four poems (chapters) are acrostics, like some of the Psalms (25, 34, 37, 119), i.e., each verse begins with a letter of the Hebrew alphabet taken in order. The first, second, and fourth have each twenty-two verses, the number of the letters in the Hebrew alphabet. The third has sixty-six verses, in which each three successive verses begin with the same letter. The fifth is not acrostic.
Speaking of the "Wailing-place (q.v.) of the Jews" at Jerusalem, a portion of the old wall of the temple of Solomon, Schaff says: "There the Jews assemble every Friday afternoon to bewail the downfall of the holy city, kissing the stone wall and watering it with their tears. They repeat from their well-worn Hebrew Bibles and prayer-books the Lamentations of Jeremiah and suitable Psalms."
Lamp - (1.) That part of the candle-sticks of the tabernacle and the temple which bore the light (Ex. 25:37; 1 Kings 7:49; 2 Chr. 4:20; 13:11; Zech. 4:2). Their form is not described. Olive oil was generally burned in them (Ex. 27:20).
(2.) A torch carried by the soliders of Gideon (Judg. 7:16, 20). (R.V., "torches.")
(3.) Domestic lamps (A.V., "candles") were in common use among the Hebrews (Matt. 5:15; Mark 4:21, etc.).
(4.) Lamps or torches were used in connection with marriage ceremonies (Matt. 25:1).
This word is also frequently metaphorically used to denote life, welfare, guidance, etc. (2 Sam. 21:17; Ps. 119:105; Prov. 6:23; 13:9).
Landmark - a boundary line indicated by a stone, stake, etc. (Deut. 19:14; 27:17; Prov. 22:28; 23:10; Job 24:2). Landmarks could not be removed without incurring the severe displeasure of God.
Laodicea - The city of this name mentioned in Scripture lay on the confines of Phrygia and Lydia, about 40 miles east of Ephesus (Rev. 3:14), on the banks of the Lycus. It was originally called Diospolis and then Rhoas, but afterwards Laodicea, from Laodice, the wife of Antiochus II., king of Syria, who rebuilt it. It was one of the most important and flourishing cities of Asia Minor. At a very early period it became one of the chief seats of Christianity (Col. 2:1; 4:15; Rev. 1:11, etc.). It is now a deserted place, called by the Turks Eski-hissar or "old castle."
Laodicea, Epistle from - (Col. 4:16), was probably the Epistle to the Ephesians, as designed for general circulation. It would reach the Colossians by way of Laodicea.
Lapidoth - torches. Deborah is called "the wife of Lapidoth" (Judg. 4:4). Some have rendered the expression "a woman of a fiery spirit," under the supposition that Lapidoth is not a proper name, a woman of a torch-like spirit.
Lapping - of water like a dog, i.e., by putting the hand filled with water to the mouth. The dog drinks by shaping the end of his long thin tongue into the form of a spoon, thus rapidly lifting up water, which he throws into his mouth. The three hundred men that went with Gideon thus employed their hands and lapped the water out of their hands (Judg. 7:7).
Lapwing - the name of an unclean bird, mentioned only in Lev. 11:19 and Deut. 14:18. The Hebrew name of this bird, dukiphath, has been generally regarded as denoting the hoope (Upupa epops), an onomatopoetic word derived from the cry of the bird, which resembles the word "hoop;" a bird not uncommon in Palestine. Others identify it with the English peewit.
Lasaea - a city in the island of Crete (Acts 27:8). Its ruins are still found near Cape Leonda, about 5 miles east of "Fair Havens."
Lasha - fissure, a place apparently east of the Dead Sea (Gen. 10:19). It was afterwards known as Callirhoe, a place famous for its hot springs.
Latchet - a thong (Acts 22:25), cord, or strap fastening the sandal on the foot (Isa. 5:27; Mark 1:7; Luke 3:16).
Latin - the vernacular language of the ancient Romans (John 19:20).
Lattice - (1.) Heb. 'eshnabh, a latticed opening through which the cool breeze passes (Judg. 5:28). The flat roofs of the houses were sometimes enclosed with a parapet of lattice-work on wooden frames, to screen the women of the house from the gaze of the neighbourhood.
(2.) Heb. harakim, the network or lattice of a window (Cant. 2:9).
(3.) Heb. sebakhah, the latticed balustrade before a window or balcony (2 Kings 1:2). The lattice window is frequently used in Eastern countries.
Laver - (Heb. kiyor), a "basin" for boiling in, a "pan" for cooking (1 Sam. 2:14), a "fire-pan" or hearth (Zech. 12:6), the sacred wash-bowl of the tabernacle and temple (Ex. 30:18, 28; 31:9; 35:16; 38:8; 39:39; 40:7, 11, 30, etc.), a basin for the water used by the priests in their ablutions.
That which was originally used in the tabernacle was of brass (rather copper; Heb. nihsheth), made from the metal mirrors the women brought out of Egypt (Ex. 38:8). It contained water wherewith the priests washed their hands and feet when they entered the tabernacle (40:32). It stood in the court between the altar and the door of the tabernacle (30:19, 21).
In the temple there were ten lavers used for the sacrifices, and the molten sea for the ablutions of the priests (2 Chr. 4:6). The position and uses of these are described 1 Kings 7:23-39; 2 Chr. 4:6. The "molten sea" was made of copper, taken from Tibhath and Chun, cities of Hadarezer, king of Zobah (1 Chr. 18:8; 1 Kings 7:23-26).
No lavers are mentioned in the second temple.
Law - a rule of action. (1.) The Law of Nature is the will of God as to human conduct, founded on the moral difference of things, and discoverable by natural light (Rom. 1:20; 2:14, 15). This law binds all men at all times. It is generally designated by the term conscience, or the capacity of being influenced by the moral relations of things.
(2.) The Ceremonial Law prescribes under the Old Testament the rites and ceremonies of worship. This law was obligatory only till Christ, of whom these rites were typical, had finished his work (Heb. 7:9, 11; 10:1; Eph. 2:16). It was fulfilled rather than abrogated by the gospel.
(3.) The Judicial Law, the law which directed the civil policy of the Hebrew nation.
(4.) The Moral Law is the revealed will of God as to human conduct, binding on all men to the end of time. It was promulgated at Sinai. It is perfect (Ps. 19:7), perpetual (Matt. 5:17, 18), holy (Rom. 7:12), good, spiritual (14), and exceeding broad (Ps. 119:96). Although binding on all, we are not under it as a covenant of works (Gal. 3:17).
(5.) Positive Laws are precepts founded only on the will of God. They are right because God commands them.
(6.) Moral positive laws are commanded by God because they are right.
Law of Moses - is the whole body of the Mosaic legislation (1 Kings 2:3; 2 Kings 23:25; Ezra 3:2). It is called by way of eminence simply "the Law" (Heb. Torah, Deut. 1:5; 4:8, 44; 17:18, 19; 27:3, 8). As a written code it is called the "book of the law of Moses" (2 Kings 14:6; Isa. 8:20), the "book of the law of God" (Josh. 24:26).
The great leading principle of the Mosaic law is that it is essentially theocratic; i.e., it refers at once to the commandment of God as the foundation of all human duty.
Lawyer - among the Jews, was one versed in the laws of Moses, which he expounded in the schools and synagogues (Matt. 22:35; Luke 10:25). The functions of the "lawyer" and "scribe" were identical.
Lazarus - an abbreviation of Eleazar, whom God helps. (1.) The brother of Mary and Martha of Bethany. He was raised from the dead after he had lain four days in the tomb (John 11:1-44). This miracle so excited the wrath of the Jews that they sought to put both Jesus and Lazarus to death.
(2.) A beggar named in the parable recorded Luke 16:19-31.
Leaf - of a tree. The olive-leaf mentioned Gen. 8:11. The barren fig-tree had nothing but leaves (Matt. 21:19; Mark 11:13). The oak-leaf is mentioned Isa. 1:30; 6:13. There are numerous allusions to leaves, their flourishing, their decay, and their restoration (Lev. 26:36; Isa. 34:4; Jer. 8:13; Dan. 4:12, 14, 21; Mark 11:13; 13:28). The fresh leaf is a symbol of prosperity (Ps. 1:3; Jer. 17:8; Ezek. 47:12); the faded, of decay (Job 13:25; Isa. 1:30; 64:6; Jer. 8:13).
Leaf of a door (1 Kings 6:34), the valve of a folding door.
Leaf of a book (Jer. 36:23), perhaps a fold of a roll.
League - a treaty or confederacy. The Jews were forbidden to enter into an alliance of any kind (1) with the Canaanites (Ex. 23:32, 33; 34:12-16); (2) with the Amalekites (Ex. 17:8, 14; Deut. 25:17-19); (3) with the Moabites and Ammonites (Deut. 2:9, 19). Treaties were permitted to be entered into with all other nations. Thus David maintained friendly intercourse with the kings of Tyre and Hamath, and Solomon with the kings of Tyre and Egypt.
Leah - weary, the eldest daughter of Laban, and sister of Rachel (Gen. 29:16). Jacob took her to wife through a deceit of her father (Gen. 29:23). She was "tender-eyed" (17). She bore to Jacob six sons (32-35), also one daughter, Dinah (30:21). She accompanied Jacob into Canaan, and died there before the time of the going down into Egypt (Gen. 31), and was buried in the cave of Machpelah (49:31).
Leannoth - for answering; i.e., in singing, occurs in the title to Ps. 88. The title "Mahalath (q.v.) Leannoth" may be rendered "concerning sickness, to be sung" i.e., perhaps, to be sung in sickness.
Leasing - (Ps. 4:2; 5:6) an Old English word meaning lies, or lying, as the Hebrew word kazabh is generally rendered.
Leather - a girdle of, worn by Elijah (2 Kings 1:8) and John the Baptist (Matt. 3:4). Leather was employed both for clothing (Num. 31:20; Heb. 11:37) and for writing upon. The trade of a tanner is mentioned (Acts 9:43; 10:6, 32). It was probably learned in Egypt.
Leaven - (1.) Heb. seor (Ex. 12:15, 19; 13:7; Lev. 2:11), the remnant of dough from the preceding baking which had fermented and become acid.
(2.) Heb. hamets, properly "ferment." In Num. 6:3, "vinegar of wine" is more correctly "fermented wine." In Ex. 13:7, the proper rendering would be, "Unfermented things [Heb. matstsoth] shall be consumed during the seven days; and there shall not be seen with thee fermented things [hamets], and there shall not be seen with thee leavened mass [seor] in all thy borders." The chemical definition of ferment or yeast is "a substance in a state of putrefaction, the atoms of which are in a continual motion."
The use of leaven was strictly forbidden in all offerings made to the Lord by fire (Lev. 2:11; 7:12; 8:2; Num. 6:15). Its secretly penetrating and diffusive power is referred to in 1 Cor. 5:6. In this respect it is used to illustrate the growth of the kingdom of heaven both in the individual heart and in the world (Matt. 13:33). It is a figure also of corruptness and of perverseness of heart and life (Matt. 16:6, 11; Mark 8:15; 1 Cor. 5:7, 8).
Lebanon - white, "the white mountain of Syria," is the loftiest and most celebrated mountain range in Syria. It is a branch running southward from the Caucasus, and at its lower end forking into two parallel ranges, the eastern or Anti-Lebanon, and the western or Lebanon proper. They enclose a long valley (Josh. 11:17) of from 5 to 8 miles in width, called by Roman writers Coele-Syria, now called el-Buka'a, "the valley," a prolongation of the valley of the Jordan.
Lebanon proper, Jebel es-Sharki, commences at its southern extremity in the gorge of the Leontes, the ancient Litany, and extends north-east, parallel to the Mediterranean coast, as far as the river Eleutherus, at the plain of Emesa, "the entering of Hamath" (Num. 34:8; 1 Kings 8:65), in all about 90 geographical miles in extent. The average height of this range is from 6,000 to 8,000 feet; the peak of Jebel Mukhmel is about 10,200 feet, and the Sannin about 9,000. The highest peaks are covered with perpetual snow and ice. In the recesses of the range wild beasts as of old still abound (2 Kings 14:9; Cant. 4:8). The scenes of the Lebanon are remarkable for their grandeur and beauty, and supplied the sacred writers with many expressive similes (Ps. 29:5, 6; 72:16; 104:16-18; Cant. 4:15; Isa. 2:13; 35:2; 60:13; Hos. 14:5). It is famous for its cedars (Cant. 5:15), its wines (Hos. 14:7), and its cool waters (Jer. 18:14). The ancient inhabitants were Giblites and Hivites (Josh. 13:5; Judg. 3:3). It was part of the Phoenician kingdom (1 Kings 5:2-6).
The eastern range, or Anti-Lebanon, or "Lebanon towards the sunrising," runs nearly parallel with the western from the plain of Emesa till it connects with the hills of Galilee in the south. The height of this range is about 5,000 feet. Its highest peak is Hermon (q.v.), from which a number of lesser ranges radiate.
Lebanon is first mentioned in the description of the boundary of Palestine (Deut. 1:7; 11:24). It was assigned to Israel, but was never conquered (Josh. 13:2-6; Judg. 3:1-3).
The Lebanon range is now inhabited by a population of about 300,000 Christians, Maronites, and Druses, and is ruled by a Christian governor. The Anti-Lebanon is inhabited by Mohammedans, and is under a Turkish ruler.
Lebbaeus - courageous, a surname of Judas (Jude), one of the twelve (Matt. 10:3), called also Thaddaeus, not to be confounded with the Judas who was the brother of our Lord.
Lebonah - frankincense, a town near Shiloh, on the north side of Bethel (Judg. 21:19). It has been identified with el-Lubban, to the south of Nablus.
Leek - (Heb. hatsir; the Allium porrum), rendered "grass" in 1 Kings 18:5, 2 Kings 19:26, Job 40:15, etc.; "herb" in Job 8:12; "hay" in Prov. 27:25, and Isa. 15:6; "leeks" only in Num. 11:5. This Hebrew word seems to denote in this last passage simply herbs, such as lettuce or savoury herbs cooked as kitchen vegetables, and not necessarily what are now called leeks. The leek was a favourite vegetable in Egypt, and is still largely cultivated there and in Palestine.
Lees - (Heb. shemarim), from a word meaning to keep or preserve. It was applied to "lees" from the custom of allowing wine to stand on the lees that it might thereby be better preserved (Isa. 25:6). "Men settled on their lees" (Zeph. 1:12) are men "hardened or crusted." The image is derived from the crust formed at the bottom of wines long left undisturbed (Jer. 48:11). The effect of wealthy undisturbed ease on the ungodly is hardening. They become stupidly secure (comp. Ps. 55:19; Amos 6:1). To drink the lees (Ps. 75:8) denotes severe suffering.
Left hand - among the Hebrews, denoted the north (Job 23:9; Gen. 14:15), the face of the person being supposed to be toward the east.
Left-handed - (Judg. 3:15; 20:16), one unable to use the right hand skilfully, and who therefore uses the left; and also one who uses the left as well as the right, ambidexter. Such a condition of the hands is due to physical causes. This quality was common apparently in the tribe of Benjamin.
Legion - a regiment of the Roman army, the number of men composing which differed at different times. It originally consisted of three thousand men, but in the time of Christ consisted of six thousand, exclusive of horsemen, who were in number a tenth of the foot-men. The word is used (Matt. 26:53; Mark 5:9) to express simply a great multitude.
Lehi - a jawbone, a place in the tribe of Judah where Samson achieved a victory over the Philistines (Judg. 15:9, 14, 16), slaying a thousand of them with the jawbone of an ass. The words in 15:19, "a hollow place that was in the jaw" (A.V.), should be, as in Revised Version, "the hollow place that is in Lehi."
Lemuel - dedicated to God, a king whom his mother instructed (Prov. 31:1-9). Nothing is certainly known concerning him. The rabbis identified him with Solomon.
Lentiles - (Heb. 'adashim), a species of vetch (Gen. 25:34; 2 Sam. 23:11), common in Syria under the name addas. The red pottage made by Jacob was of lentils (Gen. 25:29-34). They were among the provisions brought to David when he fled from Absalom (2 Sam. 17:28). It is the Ervum lens of Linnaeus, a leguminous plant which produces a fruit resembling a bean.
Leopard - (Heb. namer, so called because spotted, Cant. 4:8), was that great spotted feline which anciently infested the mountains of Syria, more appropriately called a panther (Felis pardus). Its fierceness (Isa. 11:6), its watching for its prey (Jer. 5:6), its swiftness (Hab. 1:8), and the spots of its skin (Jer. 13:23), are noticed. This word is used symbolically (Dan. 7:6; Rev. 13:2).
Leprosy - (Heb. tsara'ath, a "smiting," a "stroke," because the disease was regarded as a direct providential infliction). This name is from the Greek lepra, by which the Greek physicians designated the disease from its scaliness. We have the description of the disease, as well as the regulations connected with it, in Lev. 13; 14; Num. 12:10-15, etc. There were reckoned six different circumstances under which it might develop itself, (1) without any apparent cause (Lev. 13:2-8); (2) its reappearance (9-17); (3) from an inflammation (18-28); (4) on the head or chin (29-37); (5) in white polished spots (38, 39); (6) at the back or in the front of the head (40-44).
Lepers were required to live outside the camp or city (Num. 5:1-4; 12:10-15, etc.). This disease was regarded as an awful punishment from the Lord (2 Kings 5:7; 2 Chr. 26:20).
This disease "begins with specks on the eyelids and on the palms, gradually spreading over the body, bleaching the hair white wherever they appear, crusting the affected parts with white scales, and causing terrible sores and swellings. From the skin the disease eats inward to the bones, rotting the whole body piecemeal." "In Christ's day no leper could live in a walled town, though he might in an open village. But wherever he was he was required to have his outer garment rent as a sign of deep grief, to go bareheaded, and to cover his beard with his mantle, as if in lamentation at his own virtual death. He had further to warn passers-by to keep away from him, by calling out, 'Unclean! unclean!' nor could he speak to any one, or receive or return a salutation, since in the East this involves an embrace."
That the disease was not contagious is evident from the regulations regarding it (Lev. 13:12, 13, 36; 2 Kings 5:1). Leprosy was "the outward and visible sign of the innermost spiritual corruption; a meet emblem in its small beginnings, its gradual spread, its internal disfigurement, its dissolution little by little of the whole body, of that which corrupts, degrades, and defiles man's inner nature, and renders him unmeet to enter the presence of a pure and holy God" (Maclear's Handbook O.T). Our Lord cured lepers (Matt. 8:2, 3; Mark 1:40-42). This divine power so manifested illustrates his gracious dealings with men in curing the leprosy of the soul, the fatal taint of sin.
Letter - in Rom. 2:27, 29 means the outward form. The "oldness of the letter" (7:6) is a phrase which denotes the old way of literal outward obedience to the law as a system of mere external rules of conduct. In 2 Cor. 3:6, "the letter" means the Mosaic law as a written law.
Leummim - peoples; nations, the last mentioned of the three sons of Dedan, and head of an Arabian tribe (Gen. 25:3).
Levi - adhesion. (1.) The third son of Jacob by Leah. The origin of the name is found in Leah's words (Gen. 29:34), "This time will my husband be joined [Heb. yillaveh] unto me." He is mentioned as taking a prominent part in avenging his sister Dinah (Gen. 34:25-31). He and his three sons went down with Jacob (46:11) into Egypt, where he died at the age of one hundred and thirty-seven years (Ex. 6:16).
(2.) The father of Matthat, and son of Simeon, of the ancestors of Christ (Luke 3:29).
(3.) Luke 3:24.
(4.) One of the apostles, the son of Alphaeus (Mark 2:14; Luke 5:27, 29), called also Matthew (Matt. 9:9).
Leviathan - a transliterated Hebrew word (livyathan), meaning "twisted," "coiled." In Job 3:8, Revised Version, and marg. of Authorized Version, it denotes the dragon which, according to Eastern tradition, is an enemy of light; in 41:1 the crocodile is meant; in Ps. 104:26 it "denotes any large animal that moves by writhing or wriggling the body, the whale, the monsters of the deep." This word is also used figuratively for a cruel enemy, as some think "the Egyptian host, crushed by the divine power, and cast on the shores of the Red Sea" (Ps. 74:14). As used in Isa. 27:1, "leviathan the piercing [R.V. 'swift'] serpent, even leviathan that crooked [R.V. marg. 'winding'] serpent," the word may probably denote the two empires, the Assyrian and the Babylonian.
Levirate Law - from Latin levir, "a husband's brother," the name of an ancient custom ordained by Moses, by which, when an Israelite died without issue, his surviving brother was required to marry the widow, so as to continue his brother's family through the son that might be born of that marriage (Gen. 38:8; Deut. 25:5-10; comp. Ruth 3; 4:10). Its object was "to raise up seed to the departed brother."
Levite - a descendant of the tribe of Levi (Ex. 6:25; Lev. 25:32; Num. 35:2; Josh. 21:3, 41). This name is, however, generally used as the title of that portion of the tribe which was set apart for the subordinate offices of the sanctuary service (1 Kings 8:4; Ezra 2:70), as assistants to the priests.
When the Israelites left Egypt, the ancient manner of worship was still observed by them, the eldest son of each house inheriting the priest's office. At Sinai the first change in this ancient practice was made. A hereditary priesthood in the family of Aaron was then instituted (Ex. 28:1). But it was not till that terrible scene in connection with the sin of the golden calf that the tribe of Levi stood apart and began to occupy a distinct position (Ex. 32). The religious primogeniture was then conferred on this tribe, which henceforth was devoted to the service of the sanctuary (Num. 3:11-13). They were selected for this purpose because of their zeal for the glory of God (Ex. 32:26), and because, as the tribe to which Moses and Aaron belonged, they would naturally stand by the lawgiver in his work.
The Levitical order consisted of all the descendants of Levi's three sons, Gershon, Kohath, and Merari; whilst Aaron, Amram's son (Amram, son of Kohat), and his issue constituted the priestly order.
The age and qualification for Levitical service are specified in Num. 4:3, 23, 30, 39, 43, 47.
They were not included among the armies of Israel (Num. 1:47; 2:33; 26:62), but were reckoned by themselves. They were the special guardians of the tabernacle (Num. 1:51; 18:22-24). The Gershonites pitched their tents on the west of the tabernacle (3:23), the Kohathites on the south (3:29), the Merarites on the north (3:35), and the priests on the east (3:38). It was their duty to move the tent and carry the parts of the sacred structure from place to place. They were given to Aaron and his sons the priests to wait upon them and do work for them at the sanctuary services (Num. 8:19; 18:2-6).
As being wholly consecrated to the service of the Lord, they had no territorial possessions. Jehovah was their inheritance (Num. 18:20; 26:62; Deut. 10:9; 18:1, 2), and for their support it was ordained that they should receive from the other tribes the tithes of the produce of the land. Forty-eight cities also were assigned to them, thirteen of which were for the priests "to dwell in", i.e., along with their other inhabitants. Along with their dwellings they had "suburbs", i.e., "commons", for their herds and flocks, and also fields and vineyards (Num. 35:2-5). Nine of these cities were in Judah, three in Naphtali, and four in each of the other tribes (Josh. 21). Six of the Levitical cities were set apart as "cities of refuge" (q.v.). Thus the Levites were scattered among the tribes to keep alive among them the knowledge and service of God.
Leviticus - the third book of the Pentateuch; so called in the Vulgate, after the LXX., because it treats chiefly of the Levitical service.
In the first section of the book (1-17), which exhibits the worship itself, there is, (1.) A series of laws (1-7) regarding sacrifices, burnt-offerings, meat-offerings, and thank-offerings (1-3), sin-offerings and trespass-offerings (4; 5), followed by the law of the priestly duties in connection with the offering of sacrifices (6; 7). (2.) An historical section (8-10), giving an account of the consecration of Aaron and his sons (8); Aaron's first offering for himself and the people (9); Nadab and Abihu's presumption in offering "strange fire before Jehovah," and their punishment (10). (3.) Laws concerning purity, and the sacrifices and ordinances for putting away impurity (11-16). An interesting fact may be noted here. Canon Tristram, speaking of the remarkable discoveries regarding the flora and fauna of the Holy Land by the Palestine Exploration officers, makes the following statement:, "Take these two catalogues of the clean and unclean animals in the books of Leviticus  and Deuteronomy . There are eleven in Deuteronomy which do not occur in Leviticus, and these are nearly all animals and birds which are not found in Egypt or the Holy Land, but which are numerous in the Arabian desert. They are not named in Leviticus a few weeks after the departure from Egypt; but after the people were thirty-nine years in the desert they are named, a strong proof that the list in Deuteronomy was written at the end of the journey, and the list in Leviticus at the beginning. It fixes the writing of that catalogue to one time and period only, viz., that when the children of Israel were familiar with the fauna and the flora of the desert" (Palest. Expl. Quart., Jan. 1887). (4.) Laws marking the separation between Israel and the heathen (17-20). (5.) Laws about the personal purity of the priests, and their eating of the holy things (20; 21); about the offerings of Israel, that they were to be without blemish (22:17-33); and about the due celebration of the great festivals (23; 25). (6.) Then follow promises and warnings to the people regarding obedience to these commandments, closing with a section on vows.
The various ordinances contained in this book were all delivered in the space of a month (comp. Ex. 40:17; Num. 1:1), the first month of the second year after the Exodus. It is the third book of Moses.
No book contains more of the very words of God. He is almost throughout the whole of it the direct speaker. This book is a prophecy of things to come, a shadow whereof the substance is Christ and his kingdom. The principles on which it is to be interpreted are laid down in the Epistle to the Hebrews. It contains in its complicated ceremonial the gospel of the grace of God.
Levy - (1 Kings 4:6, R.V.; 5:13), forced service. The service of tributaries was often thus exacted by kings. Solomon raised a "great levy" of 30,000 men, about two per cent. of the population, to work for him by courses on Lebanon. Adoram (12:18) presided over this forced labour service (Ger. Frohndienst; Fr. corvee).
Lewdness - (Acts 18:14), villany or wickedness, not lewdness in the modern sense of the word. The word "lewd" is from the Saxon, and means properly "ignorant," "unlearned," and hence low, vicious (Acts 17:5).
Libertine - found only Acts 6:9, one who once had been a slave, but who had been set at liberty, or the child of such a person. In this case the name probably denotes those descendants of Jews who had been carried captives to Rome as prisoners of war by Pompey and other Roman generals in the Syrian wars, and had afterwards been liberated. In A.D. 19 these manumitted Jews were banished from Rome. Many of them found their way to Jerusalem, and there established a synagogue.
Libnah - transparency; whiteness. (1.) One of the stations of the Israelites in the wilderness (Num. 33:20, 21).
(2.) One of the royal cities of the Canaanites taken by Joshua (Josh. 10:29-32; 12:15). It became one of the Levitical towns in the tribe of Judah (21:13), and was strongly fortified. Sennacherib laid siege to it (2 Kings 19:8; Isa. 37:8). It was the native place of Hamutal, the queen of Josiah (2 Kings 23:31). It stood near Lachish, and has been identified with the modern Arak el-Menshiyeh.
Libni - white, one of the two sons of Gershon, the son of Levi (Ex. 6:17; Num. 3:18, 21). (See LAADAN ¯(n/a).)
Libya - the country of the Ludim (Gen. 10:13), Northern Africa, a large tract lying along the Mediterranean, to the west of Egypt (Acts 2:10). Cyrene was one of its five cities.
Lice - (Heb. kinnim), the creatures employed in the third plague sent upon Egypt (Ex. 8:16-18). They were miraculously produced from the dust of the land. "The entomologists Kirby and Spence place these minute but disgusting insects in the very front rank of those which inflict injury upon man. A terrible list of examples they have collected of the ravages of this and closely allied parasitic pests." The plague of lice is referred to in Ps. 105:31.
Some have supposed that the word denotes not lice properly, but gnats. Others, with greater probability, take it to mean the "tick" which is much larger than lice.
Lie - an intentional violation of the truth. Lies are emphatically condemned in Scripture (John 8:44; 1 Tim. 1:9, 10; Rev. 21:27; 22:15). Mention is made of the lies told by good men, as by Abraham (Gen. 12:12, 13; 20:2), Isaac (26:7), and Jacob (27:24); also by the Hebrew midwives (Ex. 1:15-19), by Michal (1 Sam. 19:14), and by David (1 Sam. 20:6).
Lieutenant - (only in A.V. Esther 3:12; 8:9; 9:3; Ezra 8:36), a governor or viceroy of a Persian province having both military and civil power. Correctly rendered in the Revised Version "satrap."
Life - generally of physical life (Gen. 2:7; Luke 16:25, etc.); also used figuratively (1) for immortality (Heb. 7:16); (2) conduct or manner of life (Rom. 6:4); (3) spiritual life or salvation (John 3:16, 17, 18, 36); (4) eternal life (Matt. 19:16, 17; John 3:15); of God and Christ as the absolute source and cause of all life (John 1:4; 5:26, 39; 11:25; 12:50).
Light - the offspring of the divine command (Gen. 1:3). "All the more joyous emotions of the mind, all the pleasing sensations of the frame, all the happy hours of domestic intercourse were habitually described among the Hebrews under imagery derived from light" (1 Kings 11:36; Isa. 58:8; Esther 8:16; Ps. 97:11). Light came also naturally to typify true religion and the felicity it imparts (Ps. 119:105; Isa. 8:20; Matt. 4:16, etc.), and the glorious inheritance of the redeemed (Col. 1:12; Rev. 21:23-25). God is said to dwell in light inaccessible (1 Tim. 6:16). It frequently signifies instruction (Matt. 5:16; John 5:35). In its highest sense it is applied to Christ as the "Sun of righteousness" (Mal. 4:2; Luke 2:32; John 1:7-9). God is styled "the Father of lights" (James 1:17). It is used of angels (2 Cor. 11:14), and of John the Baptist, who was a "burning and a shining light" (John 5:35), and of all true disciples, who are styled "the light of the world" (Matt. 5:14).
Lightning - frequently referred to by the sacred writers (Nah. 1:3-6). Thunder and lightning are spoken of as tokens of God's wrath (2 Sam. 22:15; Job 28:26; 37:4; Ps. 135:7; 144:6; Zech. 9:14). They represent God's glorious and awful majesty (Rev. 4:5), or some judgment of God on the world (20:9).
Lign-aloes - (only in pl., Heb. 'ahalim), a perfume derived from some Oriental tree (Num. 24:6), probably the agallochum or aloe-wood. (See ALOES ¯T0000183).
Ligure - (Heb. leshem) occurs only in Ex. 28:19 and 39:12, as the name of a stone in the third row on the high priest's breastplate. Some have supposed that this stone was the same as the jacinth (q.v.), others that it was the opal. There is now no mineral bearing this name. The "ligurite" is so named from Liguria in Italy, where it was found.
Lily - The Hebrew name shushan or shoshan, i.e., "whiteness", was used as the general name of several plants common to Syria, such as the tulip, iris, anemone, gladiolus, ranunculus, etc. Some interpret it, with much probability, as denoting in the Old Testament the water-lily (Nymphoea lotus of Linn.), or lotus (Cant. 2:1, 2; 2:16; 4:5; 5:13; 6:2, 3; 7:2). "Its flowers are large, and they are of a white colour, with streaks of pink. They supplied models for the ornaments of the pillars and the molten sea" (1 Kings 7:19, 22, 26; 2 Chr. 4:5). In the Canticles its beauty and fragrance shadow forth the preciousness of Christ to the Church. Groser, however (Scrip. Nat. Hist.), strongly argues that the word, both in the Old and New Testaments, denotes liliaceous plants in general, or if one genus is to be selected, that it must be the genus Iris, which is "large, vigorous, elegant in form, and gorgeous in colouring."
The lilies (Gr. krinia) spoken of in the New Testament (Matt. 6:28; Luke 12:27) were probably the scarlet martagon (Lilium Chalcedonicum) or "red Turk's-cap lily", which "comes into flower at the season of the year when our Lord's sermon on the mount is supposed to have been delivered. It is abundant in the district of Galilee; and its fine scarlet flowers render it a very conspicous and showy object, which would naturally attract the attention of the hearers" (Balfour's Plants of the Bible).
Of the true "floral glories of Palestine" the pheasant's eye (Adonis Palestina), the ranunuculus (R. Asiaticus), and the anemone (A coronaria), the last named is however, with the greatest probability regarded as the "lily of the field" to which our Lord refers. "Certainly," says Tristram (Nat. Hist. of the Bible), "if, in the wondrous richness of bloom which characterizes the land of Israel in spring, any one plant can claim pre-eminence, it is the anemone, the most natural flower for our Lord to pluck and seize upon as an illustration, whether walking in the fields or sitting on the hill-side." "The white water-lily (Nymphcea alba) and the yellow water-lily (Nuphar lutea) are both abundant in the marshes of the Upper Jordan, but have no connection with the lily of Scripture."
Lime - The Hebrew word so rendered means "boiling" or "effervescing." From Isa. 33:12 it appears that lime was made in a kiln lighted by thorn-bushes. In Amos 2:1 it is recorded that the king of Moab "burned the bones of the king of Edom into lime." The same Hebrew word is used in Deut. 27:2-4, and is there rendered "plaster." Limestone is the chief constituent of the mountains of Syria.
Linen - (1.) Heb., pishet, pishtah, denotes "flax," of which linen is made (Isa. 19:9); wrought flax, i.e., "linen cloth", Lev. 13:47, 48, 52, 59; Deut. 22:11.
Flax was early cultivated in Egypt (Ex. 9:31), and also in Palestine (Josh. 2:6; Hos. 2:9). Various articles were made of it: garments (2 Sam. 6:14), girdles (Jer. 13:1), ropes and thread (Ezek. 40:3), napkins (Luke 24:12; John 20:7), turbans (Ezek. 44:18), and lamp-wicks (Isa. 42:3).
(2.) Heb. buts, "whiteness;" rendered "fine linen" in 1 Chr. 4:21; 15:27; 2 Chr. 2:14; 3:14; Esther 1:6; 8:15, and "white linen" 2 Chr. 5:12. It is not certain whether this word means cotton or linen.
(3.) Heb. bad; rendered "linen" Ex. 28:42; 39:28; Lev. 6:10; 16:4, 23, 32; 1 Sam. 2:18; 2 Sam. 6:14, etc. It is uniformly used of the sacred vestments worn by the priests. The word is from a root signifying "separation."
(4.) Heb. shesh; rendered "fine linen" Ex. 25:4; 26:1, 31, 36, etc. In Prov. 31:22 it is rendered in Authorized Version "silk," and in Revised Version "fine linen." The word denotes Egyptian linen of peculiar whiteness and fineness (byssus). The finest Indian linen, the finest now made, has in an inch one hundred threads of warp and eighty-four of woof; while the Egyptian had sometimes one hundred and forty in the warp and sixty-four in the woof. This was the usual dress of the Egyptian priest. Pharaoh arrayed Joseph in a dress of linen (Gen. 41:42).
(5.) Heb. 'etun. Prov. 7:16, "fine linen of Egypt;" in Revised Version, "the yarn of Egypt."
(6.) Heb. sadin. Prov. 31:24, "fine linen;" in Revised Version, "linen garments" (Judg. 14:12, 13; Isa. 3:23). From this Hebrew word is probably derived the Greek word sindon, rendered "linen" in Mark 14:51, 52; 15:46; Matt. 27:59.
The word "linen" is used as an emblem of moral purity (Rev. 15:6). In Luke 16:19 it is mentioned as a mark of luxury.
Linen-yarn - (See YARN.)
Lines - were used for measuring and dividing land; and hence the word came to denote a portion or inheritance measured out; a possession (Ps. 16:6).
Lintel - (1.) Heb. mashkoph, a projecting cover (Ex. 12:22, 23; ver. 7, "upper door post," but R.V. "lintel"); the head-piece of a door, which the Israelites were commanded to mark with the blood of the paschal lamb.
(2.) Heb. kaphtar. Amos 9:1; Zeph. 2:14 (R.V. correctly "chapiters," as in A.V. marg.).