Here are the definitions of the words aguddah and arubbah on Biblehub.

Arubbah literally means "lattice windows" (or windows in the lattice). It can be translated as "floodgates of the heavens." The floodgates are obviously openings that God made to allow the rain to fall from the "waters above" to flood the earth, but what is the lattice (heavens)?

Aguddah means "bands" or vault/dome. The word can be translated as "structure." A vaulted roof in a church or cathedral is structured from bands that form a lattice.

What exactly is being described in these verses?:

[Gen 8:2 NASB95] [2] Also the fountains of the deep and the floodgates of the sky were closed, and the rain from the sky was restrained;

[Gen 8:2 LXX] [2] καὶ ἐπεκαλύφθησαν αἱ πηγαὶ τῆς ἀβύσσου καὶ οἱ καταρράκται τοῦ οὐρανοῦ καὶ συνεσχέθη ὁ ὑετὸς ἀπὸ τοῦ οὐρανοῦ

[Amo 9:6 NASB95] [6] The One who builds His upper chambers in the heavens And has founded His vaulted dome over the earth, He who calls for the waters of the sea And pours them out on the face of the earth, The LORD is His name.

[Amo 9:6 LXX] [6] ὁ οἰκοδομῶν εἰς τὸν οὐρανὸν ἀνάβασιν αὐτοῦ καὶ τὴν ἐπαγγελίαν αὐτοῦ ἐπὶ τῆς γῆς θεμελιῶν ὁ προσκαλούμενος τὸ ὕδωρ τῆς θαλάσσης καὶ ἐκχέων αὐτὸ ἐπὶ πρόσωπον τῆς γῆς κύριος ὁ θεὸς ὁ παντοκράτωρ ὄνομα αὐτῷ

  • 1
    Up-voted +1. There is also charakkim Song 2:9 'He showeth himself through the lattice', which casts doubt on arubbah meaning the same . . . . .
    – Nigel J
    Jan 2, 2023 at 9:34
  • Might be relevant: jewishencyclopedia.com/articles/14939-windows
    – Ruminator
    Nov 9, 2023 at 23:53
  • As my Italian neighbor says, "I'm a tinking' dat's aguddah question"!
    – Ruminator
    Dec 15, 2023 at 19:21

1 Answer 1


As to Genesis 8:2, arubbah is describing the way in which the waters filled the earth. The topic of "Heaven" in the Insight on the Scriptures provides a better understanding:

At the Flood, the waters suspended above the expanse apparently descended as if by certain channels, as well as in rainfall. When this vast reservoir had emptied itself, such “floodgates of the heavens” were, in effect, “stopped up.”​—Ge 8:2. [bold mine]

The commentary in the Cambridge Bible for Schools and Colleges notes the following:

  1. That buildeth his upper chambers in the heaven, and hath founded his vault upon the earth] The Hebrews pictured the sky as a solid vault (firmamentum), resting at its extremities upon the earth (Job 26:11): in this vault the heavenly bodies were imagined to revolve: “in front of it” (i.e. in the open air below its lower surface) the birds flew (Genesis 1:20): above it were reservoirs in which rain was stored (as also snow and hail); and above these “waters above the firmament” Jehovah sat enthroned. The words are thus intended to illustrate Jehovah’s power by pointing to the palace which He has constructed for Himself on high, and firmly secured, by resting its foundations upon the solid earth.

Taking both references together, we get to see a mental picture of the water cycle. This is corroborated in the article "Be Thankful for the Rain" of the Watchtower, January 1, 2009:

About one hundred years after Elijah’s prayer for rain, a humble farmer named Amos emphasized an important detail about the source of the water cycle. Amos was used by God to prophesy against the Israelites for oppressing the poor and for worshipping false gods. Lest they perish at God’s hand, Amos urged them to “search for Jehovah, and keep living.” Then Amos explained that Jehovah alone should be worshipped because he is the Creator, “the One calling for the waters of the sea, that he may pour them out upon the surface of the earth.” (Amos 5:6, 8) Amos later repeated this wonderful fact about the water cycle and its direction. (Amos 9:6) Amos thus showed that the oceans are the main source of earth’s rain.

This fact was scientifically proved by Edmond Halley in 1687. Yet, it took time before others accepted Halley’s evidence. “The idea that there is a circulatory system within the Earth, by which seawater is conveyed to mountaintops and there discharged, persisted until early in the 18th century,” states Encyclopædia Britannica Online. Today, the truth about the direction of the water cycle is common knowledge. The same source explains: “The waters of the sea are evaporated, are subsequently condensed within the atmosphere, fall to the Earth as precipitation, and finally flow in the rivers back to the sea.” Clearly, then, Solomon’s words about the rain cycle, recorded at Ecclesiastes 1:7, refer to the same process involving clouds and rain. [bold mine]

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