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1 Kings 10:14 says, "the weight of gold which Solomon received every year was 666 talents of gold, besides what came from tradesmen, from the traffic of the merchants, and from all the kings of Arabia and the governors of the regions." (Jewish Study Bible).

Is there any significance of this number, or any commentaries about it?

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    It is a bit strange that king Solomon had decided to yearly limit his import of gold to the exact number of 666 talents. Why did he do that? If it happened by chance one year one could accept it. But year after year the same number 666. It sounds more like it is a later scriptural construct. But, who knows, maybe he had a strange liking to that number. Commented Aug 27, 2021 at 12:05
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    "any commentaries about it?" See Bodner, K; & Strawn, BA (2020). Solomon and 666 (Revelation 13.18). New Testament Studies, 66(2). pp. 299-312. Full text pdf available online: dukespace.lib.duke.edu/dspace/handle/10161/23577. [This answer has been given as a comment here because I don't yet have enough reputation points on this site to post as an actual answer.] Commented May 20, 2022 at 9:48
  • Two more helpful resources on Solomon and 666: (1) Painchaud, Louis. “2023 The Dragon, the Beasts, and the Gold. The Number of the Beast in the Apocalypse of John.” E. Lupieri, L. Painchaud. Who Is Sitting on Which Beast? Interpretative Issues in the Book of Revelation (2023). (2) Harris, Zachary. “Forward and Reverse Gematria Are Very Different Beasts.” Open Theology 10.1 (2024): degruyter.com/document/doi/10.1515/opth-2022-0241. Commented May 6 at 12:57

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I don't think it's too much of a coincidence.

If we look back at the law for kings in Deuteronomy 17, It prohibits the king from multiplying horses and chariots, wives, and wealth. This is exactly what Solomon is doing in 1 Kings 10-11. Chapter ten begins by commending his great wisdom, but then steps through his decline - that is, he begins violating the rules for kings by multiplying gold (666 talents a year), multiplying horses and chariots, and finally multiplying wives who turn his heart away from following Yahweh. He sets up centers of false worship for all the foreign gods of his wives. So, the number 666 is associated with Solomon in his fall, his abuse of power, and his turning away from true worship of Yahweh.

In Revelation, Jesus sets up worship interactions under the symbol of business transactions - buying and selling.

I counsel you to buy from me gold refined by fire, so that you may be rich, and white garments so that you may clothe yourself and the shame of your nakedness may not be seen, and salve to anoint your eyes, so that you may see.

This is picked up in chapter 13 with reference to worship in the false temple - the image set up by the beast which must be worshiped on pain of death. Everyone must worship the image, but no one may do so without the mark. The buying and selling referred to here is of the same kind established by Jesus in chapter 3. It is worship - spiritual transactions.

This kind of forced worship of an image set up also has ties back to Nebuchadnezzar.

King Nebuchadnezzar made an image of gold, whose height was sixty cubits and its breadth six cubits... And the herald proclaimed aloud, “You are commanded, O peoples, nations, and languages, that when you hear the sound of the horn, pipe, lyre, trigon, harp, bagpipe, and every kind of music, you are to fall down and worship the golden image that King Nebuchadnezzar has set up. And whoever does not fall down and worship shall immediately be cast into a burning fiery furnace.”

Nebuchadnezzar is acting as a beast (and later, even more so) and sets up an image to be worshiped. Again, we have six and sixty associated with worship of a false image on pain of death.

All of this comes together in the name and number of the man - 666. This sums up man in his fallen state. The number carries with it the fallen glory of Solomon, his degraded wisdom, his failure to follow the word of God, his abuse of power, and his allowing himself to be turned aside to the worship of impotent gods.

Don't be afraid of symbolism; it's good for you :)

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The 666 number in 1 Kings 10:14 appears to be simply coincidence. The text in Revelation where 666 also appears says, "And that no man might buy or sell, save he that had the mark, or the name of the beast, or the number of his name. Here is wisdom. Let him that hath understanding count the number of the beast: for it is the number of a man; and his number is six hundred threescore and six." (Revelation 13:17-18) Note that the number in Revelation is the number of the name of a man. It had nothing to do with a sum of money.

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    In other words, the amount of gold was neither 665 talents nor 667 talents, but 666. Period! Commented Sep 18, 2013 at 16:17
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    In today's monetary values is USD 939,544,651.54 One Talent in King Solomon's days is equivalent to 34.2 Kg today. 1 kg =32.1507 troy ounces, Todays Gold prices per ounce is about USD 1,283/ t oz Commented Dec 23, 2017 at 21:37
  • There is NO coincidence in the Bible if it's an inspired book from God.
    – Quidam
    Commented Nov 19, 2019 at 4:47
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    Take note that Rev 13:18 begins by saying here is wisdom. Together with this number, it clearly connects it to Solomon. Commented Apr 27, 2021 at 10:39
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    There is no article "of a man". It could just as well be "number of man", e.g. number of the creature that buys and sells, trafficking in wisdom as Solomon did.
    – Robert
    Commented Aug 27, 2021 at 4:02
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This number belongs to a specific fallen angel. In fact Solomon in his decline into idolatry set up places of worship to this “star god”. This particular false god demands an especially wicked act of sacrifice.

Children were made to “pass through the fire” as the Bible records in Leviticus 18:21. This idol has many names, moloch, baal, daigon, remphan, saturn, chronos, the grim reaper, the Minotaur, Father Time. The apostle Stephen was martyred when he indicted the Jews of his day in acts 7:43 “You took up the tent of Moloch and the star of your god Rephan, the images that you made to worship; and I will send you into exile beyond Babylon.”

The Star of remphan is this ✡️ the mark of the beast is this mark which can be found on the back of every dollar bill, and it will be taken by those who are not written in the lambs book of life. When Apollyon, who is the beast out of the earth, is released from the Abyss. Then he will deceive man into making an image to the beast of the sea, who is….remphan. That is the significance of Solomon’s 666 talents of Gold, it was provided by the god he entered covenant with. Remphan. Amen.

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In my Bible study a couple of years ago, I ran across Revelation 13, with its infamous number 666.

Here is wisdom. Let him who has understanding calculate the number of the beast, for the number is that of a man; and his number is six hundred and sixty-six. - Revelation 13:18 (NASB)

To avoid the overtrodden path of trying to torture a link to a personage out of this number, I reasoned that since so much of Revelation contains allusions to passages in the Tanakh, I would try to focus on it instead.

In this passage in the literal Greek from The Apostolic Polyglot Bible, the number 666 is represented by three Greek characters: k (chi), x (xi), and s (sigma). The number is not spelled out here.

In the Tanakh, the number 666 appears four times: twice about a man named Adonikam who had 666/7 descendants (Ezra 2:13; Nehemiah 7:18) and twice regarding the yearly income of Solomon in gold talents. In each case, the number 666 is spelled out as shown here:

שֵׁ֖שׁ מֵא֛וֹת שִׁשִּׁ֥ים שֵׁ֖שׁ is spelled out as “six hundred sixty six” - I Kings 10:14

שֵׁ֥שׁ מֵא֛וֹת וְשִׁשִּׁ֥ים וָשֵׁ֖שׁ is spelled out as “six hundred sixty and six” II Chronicles 9:13

וְשִׁשָּֽׁה is also spelled out as “. . . and six” Ezra 2:13, Nehemiah 7:18

This does not directly support an interpretation that uses Hebrew numerology (Gematria). So, I decided to do an inventory on Solomon. I came up with this list:

Solomon

  1. He was very wise.
  2. He was extremely wealthy.
  3. He had tons of wives and girlfriends.
  4. He obtained his gold talents from Arabia.
  5. He was legitimately called “the son of David.”
  6. He had a large number of horses and chariots.
  7. He built the Second Temple, Solomon’s Temple.
  8. His name is popular in the Middle East such as Suleiman.
  9. He broke all four rules that God gave him: he kept a large military, had multiple wives, amassed wealth in silver and gold, and didn’t learn and keep God’s commandments.

It’s interesting that John should write “Here is wisdom.” Maybe this also alludes to Solomon.

Antichrist/The Assyrian/Nimrod/One who comes in his own name/Idol shepherd/The eleventh horn/Prince who is to come/Man of the earth/

Daniel 7:8, 21, 24, 25 describes the antichrist as overwhelming ten kings and overthrowing three kings, having a mouth speaking great things, and making war against the holy ones, overcoming them, and misleading them. He will also want to alter times and law.

Daniel 8:23-24 indicates that the antichrist will be very wise and able to solve riddles.

Daniel 9:27 mentions a seven-year covenant made by the antichrist, followed by the abomination of desolation in the midpoint of that period.

Daniel 11:31- describes him as profaning the sanctuary, introducing a new covenant, doing his will, exalting himself, over every god and the God of gods. He will neither honor the God of his fathers (Judaism?) nor “the desire of women” (i.e. Eve, Messiah, Christianity), but he will honor a god of a fortress/strengths/forces.

In Matthew 24, Jesus describes the antichrist as fulfilling the abomination of desolation prophecy of Daniel, who will stand in the holy place in Jerusalem setting himself above all that is called God.

The literal Greek in Revelation 11:13 reads,

“The one having the mind, tally the number of the beast; for it is a number of a man.”

The word tally is interesting here. It’s also used in Luke 14:28 when Jesus says,

“For who of you wanting to build a tower, not having first sat down to tally the expense . . .”

The Tally

So, a tally can also mean to count and I found a website claiming that Solomon was the 666th person named in the Tanakh!

Interesting, but is this actually true? I don’t want to get suckered by unsubstantiated claims as is so common online so I counted them myself. One. By. One.

There might be some variation in the list if you exclude women’s names, count different names for the same person, or the same name for different people. This is where it's useful to have their fathers' names. It also depends whether you want to include or include the book of Ruth later in the book order (i.e. in the Ketuvim), which I assumed was the case.

Perhaps a list of unique NAMES (rather than people) was known by the ancient scribes, so close enough might be good enough to see whether I'm even in the ballpark.

Thus, I went on a strange trip through Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, Deuteronomy, Joshua, Judges, Samuel. The research and notes I had took went into an Excel spreadsheet. It turned out to be a fascinating though tedious tour, however, I wasn’t able to resolve issues about some names, and around name 400, I started doubting my sanity for even starting. But I persevered.

My list included ALL names/people as they were first mentioned. I tried to keep separate the people with the same name and not count twice those who had name changes.

Solomon (aka Jedidiah) was number . . . 636. So, who was 666? It was (drumroll) Eliam, father of Bathsheba (daughter of Sheba?).

And who was number 616? It was Chileab, son of David and Abigail. Be still my beating heart.

Most options shorten the list, pushing person number 666 farther from Solomon. So, are there any considerations that lengthen the list? Moving Ruth into the Christian book order adds 10 names. That's pretty much it.

Naturally, you're most welcome to try it yourself.

For a scholarly study, see Solomon and 666 (Revelation 13.18)

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  • @Dieter-It needs to be pointed out that all the references to an alleged "antichrist in the verses you mentioned are all speculation squared! (Daniel 7, 8, 11, 12) The word "antichrist" is nowhere mentioned in them! It is simply assumed that they describe an antichrist, and that all the verses apply to one individual. However, the context of each has shown that Vespasian, Antiochus, Herod, and Titus are the more likely persons prophesied about. Lumping them all together is not hermeneutically plausible.
    – ray grant
    Commented Sep 14, 2023 at 0:00
  • Thank you, Ray. Yes, this is all speculation, but I followed one bunny trail to its bitter end, hopefully refuting it. You're right, the term, antichrist, is not used in the Bible. As to what's more likely? I'd suggest that the word "tally" is more significant than usually given credit for, and since there are so many allusions to the Tanakh in Revelation, it's likely that this one another one as well. From a hermeneutics perspective, I'm not sure that any Roman emperor fits the 666, although many people try to force fit them.
    – Dieter
    Commented Sep 15, 2023 at 1:28
  • @Dieter-Trueness! Trying to fit the number to a personal man is an endless conundrum wrapped in a mystery. But "tallying up" the Roman letters (numerals) points to the Roman Empire of Man which is a Beast, and beasts represented Empires in the Bible. But none of this detracts from our being vigilant spiritually in all generations. Keep providing answers for us to cogitate , ruminate, meditate on!!
    – ray grant
    Commented Sep 16, 2023 at 21:59
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777 God, Son, Holy Spirit (Perfection and Holy)
666 The Dragon, The Beast, the False Prophet (perfect absolute evil)

Matthew 18:21-22

"Lord, how often will my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? As many as seven times?” Jesus said to him, “I do not say to you seven times, but seventy-seven times" (77 times more than 7)

Matthew asked "seven times?" because that is "completeness" and "fullness" and is far above once or twice. Jesus replied seventy-seven times.

Note that God rested on the seventh Day.

Back to 666.

Man was created on the sixth Day. It is a human number.

King of Babylon, gold image to worship 66 Nebuchadnezzar the king made an image of gold, the height of which was sixty cubits and its width six cubits; he set it up on the plain of Dura in the province of Babylon

The blasphemous giant Goliath's height was six cubits. The head of the spear weighed six hundred shekels of iron.

King Solomon

  1. He shall not multiply horses for himself
  2. He shall not multiply wives for himself
  3. Nor shall he greatly increase silver and gold for himself

King Solomon broke all three.

  • Greed and for the love of money.
  • The foreign women changed his heart to worship false gods and set idols for worship.

Timothy 6:10

For the love of money is the root of all of evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows.

1 Kings 11:1, 2, 7, 8

1 Solomon loved many foreign women in addition to Pharaoh’s daughter. He loved Hittite women and women from Moab, Ammon, Edom, and Sidon. 2 They came from the nations about which the Lord had said to the people of Israel, “Never intermarry with them. They will surely tempt you to follow their gods.” But Solomon was obsessed with their love

7 Then Solomon built an illegal worship site on the hill east of Jerusalem for Chemosh (the disgusting idol of Moab) and for Molech (the disgusting idol of the Ammonites). 8 He did these things for each of his foreign wives who burned incense and sacrificed to their gods.

The number 7 is a wholesome, perfect number. 777 is completeness to perfection. God's day of rest, completion, the Sabbath, and much more. 7 7 7 is also considered the Trinity: God, Son, and Holy Spirit

The number 6 is man's number. 666 is complete evil, fully forsaking God. Fully aware of denying God without any doubts, choosing perversion, false gods, idol worship, and comforts of the world. 6 6 6 is also known as the Dragon, the Beast, and the False Prophet

Idols will be created and worshipped as spoken in Revelation 9:20

But the rest of mankind, who were not killed by these plagues, did not repent of the works of their hands, that they should not worship demons, and idols of gold, silver, brass, stone, and wood, which can neither see nor hear nor walk.

Accepting the Mark of the Beast is absolute, willful, denial of Jesus' free gift of everlasting life, refusing to repent. Instead of loving God, they will hate God and everything related to God. They will have the spirit of the antichrist, worshipping false gods, murderous, liars, thieves, homosexuality, drunkards, lovers of themselves, sexually immoral, sorcerers, and witches.

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This is also mentioned in 2 Chronicles 9 verse 13. This chapter showcases the zenith of Israel power and wealth, with Solomon collecting 666 talents of gold per year. It's generally read as a coincidence with the New Testament Book of Revelations reference to 666 as the mark of the beast.

REVELATIONS chapter 13 verse 18:

[16] Also it causes all, both small and great, both rich and poor, both free and slave, to be marked on the right hand or the forehead, [17] so that no one can buy or sell who does not have the mark, that is, the name of the beast or the number of its name. [18] This calls for wisdom: let anyone with understanding calculate the number of the beast, for it is the number of a person. Its number is six hundred sixty-six. [NRSV]

It's possible to read this as a prophesy connected with the same numerical accounts written in 1 Kings and 2 Chronicles. Today, what we call the "Greek Septuagint" would have been considered holy scriptures by those practicing Judaism within most of the Roman Empire, including it's sect of Christianity. The entire New Testament was written in Greek, and it's canon added to that of the Septuagint. Those Scriptures accounting for Solomon's Gold were available to the Apostle Paul and the author of Revelations.

We may ask why the author of Revelations use 666 as the code of for the mark of the Beast. There are 2 choices, either it was an arbitrary number, or it was relevant to something else. If it was relevant to something else, then it could be referencing Solomon's Gold.

Reading Revelations chapter 13 verse 18 we see a couple of possible coincidences ...or relevancies. If it is to be read as relevant to Solomon's Gold then we can look at similarities to the Chapter and Verse structure, like so...

2 Chronicles chapter 9 verse 13. (a) 666 occurs in chapter 13 of Revelations but verse 13 in Chronicles.

(b) 666 occurs in verse 18 of Revelations but 2 Chronicles chapter 9 in Chronicles. 2 X 9 = 18

(c) 6 occurs 3 times. 18 divided by 6 = 3. 3 "6s" are Arabic numerals for 666.

(d) Arabia is also providing Gold to Solomon, as mentioned in the verse from 1 Kings and 2 Chronicles.

(E) During the era when the New Testament was written, Greek was common written language of the Roman Empire, because Alexander the Great had previously established Greek Culture and the Greek Language as the International Language of his empire. That held true during the Roman Empire, except that the persons running Government, who were considered the wise ones, and their legal administrators, used the Latin Alphabet and wrote Roman Law in Latin.

... it was common to use Code during the Roman Empire, where numbers were associated with letters, in their order within the proper alphabet. When reading Revelations as supernatural prophesy, it's possible to believe that the code was written for modern times, and only fully understandable at the "proper time".

... for instance, if hypothetically it were relevant to today, as supernatural prophecy, we could attempt to crack the code, like so...

... first lets consider the instructions within Revelations. a) we need to calculate the number. b) it requires someone with "wisdom". c) and it lets us know that everyone who follows the beast will have the mark on their forehead or arm.

... --in Roman times, voting was common for politicians. Someone who votes would receive a mark on their forehead or arm so they wouldn't vote twice. -- it requires "wisdom" someone who can read the Latin alphabet to associate numbers to letters. Solomon collected Gold from Arabia, so lets try Arabic numerals 666. Lets try associating the digits to Latin characters: many have tried that and failed. Let's try the 18th character because the verse in Revelations was the 18th verse. That gives an (R). Revelations says we need to "calculate the number" lets try that. Revelations says that it's the number of the name. Let's also try that: A full name has three names, first middle and last. Let's divide the whole name by 3, from 18, to get 6 for each name: first, middle and last. or in Arabic numerals 6-6-6.

So, (R) would be representative of the 18th verse. We can calculate a political name for someone with the mark of (R) and get 6-6-6. And, we can figure that everyone who votes for the Politicians with the mark of the (R) as receiving the politicians through their voting mark for the (R) candidate. They would not be able to buy or trade unless they endorsed the (R) political movement, or The Beast. And, the Beast would be trying to replicate Solomon's Gold at all cost.

There, that's an example of how to crack the code assuming it is relevant to Kings and Chronicles. And that it supernaturally was relevant to today's day and time. (R) would be the actual mark of the Beast, and it has to be calculated, and it has to be the number of the name. And it requires wisdom (Knowledge of Latin alphabet, and the ability to associate with Arabic numerals, which of course today everyone can do that.)

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    The problem with this explanation is that it requires the modern chapter and verse numbers which didn't exist in the oldest bibles
    – b a
    Commented Sep 17, 2018 at 17:44
  • But that would not have been a problem had the message been divinely inspired for Today. Many interpret the "666" for today rather than yesterday.
    – user12711
    Commented Sep 23, 2018 at 16:09

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