Questions tagged [symbolism]

Examination of Metaphorical, Prophetic, and Mystical symbolism. However, figures-of-speech, or euphemisms, or word-study should be used separately.

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When is a person "born of water and the Spirit"? John 3:5

John 3:5 (ESV): 5 Jesus answered, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God. According to Jesus, a person must be "born of ...
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Psalm 37:4 & Psalm 20:4 "...grant you your heart’s desire..." and "...give you the desires of your heart..." "dual-natured layers of meaning"

Psalm 20:1-6 1 May the Lord answer you in the day of trouble! May the name of the God of Jacob set you securely on high! 2 May He send you help from the sanctuary And support you from Zion! 3 May He ...
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Was the prophecy of Zechariah 14: 4 already fulfilled or is it yet to come?

To help interpret this question, I have posted some of the surrounding verses to help a bit: Zechariah 14:3-9: "Then the LORD will go forth and fight against those nations, as when He fights on ...
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Is there symbolic or interpretive significance to Pilate addressing Christ as "the Man," "Christ," and "King"?

Pilate addressed Jesus using at least the three appellations: "the Man," "Christ," and "King." Here are the relevant passages (there are others): Matthew 27:17b: “[...
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Within context of Psalm 107:18 , what does food symbolically mean?

Does Psalm 107:18 reference to food symbolically mean God, prayer and meditating on God's Word (personal devotions/quiet time in today's lingo)? If yes, why does it say it abhorred "all kinds of ...
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Does Revelation 6:9 establish the destination of the martyred souls prior to their final destination?

Revelation 6:9 NIV 9 When he opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar the souls of those who had been slain because of the word of God and the testimony they had maintained. Does this text ...
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Could this be the same song in Revelation 5 and 14?

Revelation 5:8-9 NIV 8 And when he had taken it, the four living creatures and the twenty-four elders fell down before the Lamb. Each one had a harp and they were holding golden bowls full of incense,...
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What is the significance or symbolism of wringing off the head of a bird in Leviticus 1:14?

It is said during the offering of a burnt sacrifice of a bird the Priest shall wring off its head and burn it,then shall drain its blood,remove its feathers,divide it and then finally burn it. ...
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(1 Kings 13) Symbolism of God's command to Unnamed Prophet specifying Not to eat bread Nor drink water nor return by the way which you came?

1 Kings 13:1-8 1 Now behold, there came a man of God from Judah to Bethel by the word of the Lord, while Jeroboam was standing by the altar to burn incense............................................. ...
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When God created Adam and Eve and the covenant of marriage between the two, did He already have the marriage between Christ and the Church in mind? [closed]

The union between man and woman, which we currently understand as the covenant of marriage, was part of God's original plan for His creation according to Genesis 2: 20 The man gave names to all ...
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Does physical birth in amniotic fluid parallel the spiritual rebirth of John 3:4-5? [closed]

In John's Gospel we read: John 3:4-5: "Nicodemus said to Him, 'How can a man be born when he is old? He cannot enter a second time into his mother’s womb and be born, can he?' Jesus answered, '...
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"... where their worm does not die and the fire is not quenched" - Is Jesus' description of Hell (Gehenna) literal or figurative?

Mark 9:47-49: 47 And if your eye causes you to sin, tear it out. It is better for you to enter the kingdom of God with one eye than with two eyes to be thrown into hell, 48 ‘where their worm does not ...
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Understanding the Parable of the Weeds (Matthew 13:24-30)

Matthew 13:24-30 (ESV): 24 He put another parable before them, saying, “The kingdom of heaven may be compared to a man who sowed good seed in his field, 25 but while his men were sleeping, his enemy ...
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What is meant by "these are a shadow of the things to come" in Colossians 2:16-17?

Colossians 2:16-17 (ESV): 16 Therefore let no one pass judgment on you in questions of food and drink, or with regard to a festival or a new moon or a Sabbath. 17 These are a shadow of the things to ...
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Are there other O.T. commandments that experienced a similar "spiritual reinterpretation" as circumcision in the N.T.? [closed]

Circumcision in the O.T. was a commandment that was carried out in a physical fashion. Males had to undergo a literal, physical circumcision of their foreskin. However, in the New Testament the ...
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What does "enter the holy place by the blood of Jesus" mean in Hebrews 10:19?

Hebrews 10:19-25 (NASB): 19 Therefore, brothers and sisters, since we have confidence to enter the holy place by the blood of Jesus, 20 by a new and living way which He inaugurated for us through the ...
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Could the six jars of wine at the Wedding at Cana symbolize the six followers of Jesus at the wedding?

John 1 describes in some detail Jesus calling his first five disciples - Andrew, Simon, Philip, Nathanael and presumably John. John 2 1-2 says that Jesus' mother was at the wedding and Jesus was there ...
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In Ezekiel 23 what acts of prostitution did Israel commit while she was a youth in Egypt?

According to the narrative in Ezekiel 23 it is said Israel began her prostitution in Egypt whilst still a youth,she is symbolized as two sisters Oholah and Oholibah which seems to refer to Jerusalem ...
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In Daniel 12,6-7, is there some significance to the man being "above the waters"?

[Dan 12:6-7 NASB] (6) And one said to the man dressed in linen, who was above the waters of the river, "How long [will it be] until the end of [these] wonders?" (7) I heard the man dressed ...
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What is the imagery in Psalm 19:5?

Psalm 19:5 It is like a bridegroom coming out of his chamber, like a champion rejoicing to run his course. What does this signify? Is it romantic/sexual?
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How does the symbol of dust modify the poor in 2 Samuel 2:8?

In 1 Samuel 2:8, the scripture says: He raises up the poor from the dust; he lifts the needy from the ash heap to make them sit with princes and inherit a seat of honor. For the pillars of the earth ...
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How does Isaiah's Idiom "Like-a Drop From-a Bucket" (כְּמַ֣ר מִדְּלִ֔י) symbolize Nations (גּוֹיִם֙)?

We read a poetic simile from the prophet Yeshayahu "Ke-Mar Mi-Deliy" in Isaiah 40:15 [MT] : "Behold the nations are like a drop from a bucket" (הֵ֚ן גּוֹיִם֙ כְּמַ֣ר מִדְּלִ֔י). How does ...
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Seeking to understand the use of the number 7 in the book of Daniel

I realize that the number 7 is used symbolically throughout the bible, prophets and writings. I noticed that the use of sevens seems to occur frequently in the book of Daniel. A few examples number ...
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Song of Solomon 5:7 Why did the watchmen beat the beloved woman?

Song of Solomon 5:7 The watchmen found me as they made their rounds in the city. They beat me, they bruised me; they took away my cloak, those watchmen of the walls! They even stole her cloak. What’s ...
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Did the men of Solomon's time preferred lighter skin women?

Song of Solomon 1:5 I am dark, yet lovely, O daughters of Jerusalem, like the tents of Kedar, like the curtains of Solomon. 6 Do not stare because I am dark, for the sun has gazed upon me. My mother’s ...
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Who is the root and the tree in Romans 11?

But if some of the branches were broken off, and you, being a wild olive, were grafted in among them and became partaker with them of the rich root of the olive tree, do not be arrogant toward the ...
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What's the significance between, "Let the WATERS bring...the moving creature" (Gn 1:20) and "Let the EARTH bring...the living creature" (Gn 1:24)?

הַמַּ֔יִם שֶׁ֖רֶץ נֶ֣פֶשׁ חַיָּ֑ה (Gen 1:20) תֹּוצֵ֨א הָאָ֜רֶץ נֶ֤פֶשׁ חַיָּה֙ (Gen 1:24) I understand that fowls and fish come from the waters and that land animals come from the earth. It seems ...
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What is the significance of using water in Jesus's first miracle?

Jesus's first miracle John 2 When they started running low on wine at the wedding banquet, Jesus’ mother told him, “They’re just about out of wine”...Jesus ordered the servants, “Fill the pots with ...
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Trumpet Call of God

Three times in the NT we are told about the "trumpet call of God" which is always associated with the second Advent and the great resurrection of the dead. These are: Matt 24:31, And He will send ...
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What is the allusion in Matt 12:6, "something greater"?

The text of Matt 12:6 is: But I tell you that something greater than the temple is here. Most commentaries suggest that Jesus is referring to Himself. Could Jesus be drawing on the Old Testament ...
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Ezek. 41:18 KJV: Why only the two of the “cherubim's” faces in Messiah’s future earthly dwelling place, a man and a lion, rather than four?

Ezek. 41:18:KJV And it was made with cherubims and palm trees, so that a palm tree was between a cherub and a cherub; and every cherub had two faces; Verses 19-25 reveal that one of these two faces ...
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How does one practically receive the "light of the knowledge" of the Glory of God in 2 Corinthians 4:6?

1) How does one practically receive the "light of the knowledge" of the Glory of God in 2 Corinthians 4:6 For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to ...
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Did David sacrifice every six steps in 2 Samuel 6:13?

2 Samuel 6:13 NIV 13 When those who were carrying the ark of the Lord had taken six steps, he sacrificed a bull and a fattened calf. In the above text David is said to have offered a sacrifice ...
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In 1 Peter 5:8 is "your adversary, the devil" a reference to persecuting Jews in cahoots with Rome?

Peter speaks of a "roaring lion" on the prowl. I don't think anyone thinks that an actual lion is the problem. Nor does the Satan eat humans that I'm aware of. [1Pe 5:8-11 CSB] (8) Be sober-...
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What mountains is Isaiah 52:7 referring to?

I have read through Isaiah 52:7 time and again. I don’t seem to be coming to terms with how the feet of him that brings the good news are beautiful upon the mountains. “How beautiful upon the ...
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In Revelation 21:16 do the walls of the new Jerusalem rise 12,000 furlongs?

Revelation describes the height of the new Jerusalem to be equal to its base, which is 12,000 furlongs. Generally speaking one does not usually refer to the "height" of a city. I'm not sure what that ...
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In Acts 26:23 what does it mean that the Messiah will "proclaim light"?

[Act 26:23 ASV] (23) how that the Christ must suffer, and how that he first by the resurrection of the dead should proclaim light both to the people and to the Gentiles. [Act 26:23 MGNT] (23) εἰ ...
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In Ezekiel 44:19 is the concern with not sanctifying the people or with not soiling their holy garments?

Complete Jewish Bible Ezekiel 44:19 But when they go out into the Outer Court, into the Outer Court to the people, they shall put off their garments wherein they minister and place them in chambers ...
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What is the significance of how Jesus instructed Peter to get the money in Matthew 17:25

In Matthew 17 there is a story of Jesus telling Peter to go and get money for the temple tax. For some reason, Jesus didn't just make money appear or ask Peter to get some from Judas Iscariot (who ...
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In Revelation 6:6 what is meant by "Do not damage the oil and the wine”?

Revelation 6:5-6 (NASB) 5" When He broke the third seal, I heard the third living creature saying, “Come.” I looked, and behold, a black horse; and he who sat on it had a pair of scales in his hand....
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Is the "lambkin" of Revelation 13:11 the "little horn" of Daniel 7:8?

[Rev 13:11 ESV] (11) Then I saw another beast rising out of the earth. It had two horns like a lamb and it spoke like a dragon. [Rev 13:11 MGNT] (11) καὶ εἶδον ἄλλο θηρίον ἀναβαῖνον ἐκ τῆς γῆς καὶ ...
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Is John 17:22 an allusion to Genesis 2:24?

[John 17:21-23 KJV] (21) That they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe that thou hast sent me. (22) And the glory ...
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Is the river of Revelation 12:15 vomit?

A river coming out of the mouth of the Satan (whom I take to be Caiaphas, the High Priest, here and throughout Revelation, or rather, a Satan-filled Caiaphas) seems inappropriately clean and too ...
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Is Luke 19:44 an allusion to Psalm 137:9?

[Luke 19:44 NLT] (44) They will crush you into the ground, and your children with you. Your enemies will not leave a single stone in place, because you did not accept your opportunity for salvation." ...
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What is the symbolic significance of performing circumcision on the "8th day"? [duplicate]

In Leviticus 12:3 what was the symbolic significance of choosing the eighth day after birth for the time of circumcision? [Lev 12:3 KJV] (3) And in the eighth day the flesh of his foreskin shall ...
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In Revelation 11:1-2 why does the angel tell John to measure the temple?

[Rev 11:1-2 NLT] (1) Then I was given a measuring stick, and I was told, "Go and measure the Temple of God and the altar, and count the number of worshipers. (2) But do not measure the outer courtyard,...
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In Lamentations 2:8 what does it mean that the LORD has "stretched out a line"?

[Lam 2:8 KJV] (8) The LORD hath purposed to destroy the wall of the daughter of Zion: he hath stretched out a line, he hath not withdrawn his hand from destroying: therefore he made the rampart and ...
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What does the “prodigal son’s” demand for his inheritance in advance symbolize?

“And he said, "There was a man who had two sons. And the younger of them said to his father, 'Father, give me the share of property that is coming to me.' And he divided his property between them.” ‭...
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Could Jesus actually have risen from the dead on the fourth day, instead on the third day?

I was reading Luke 24:7 just now. The verse is about an angel who tells the disciples that Jesus was going to rise the third day. I noticed that it didn’t say on the third day, or after the third day. ...
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In 2 Corinthians 10:4 what are the "weapons of our warfare" and "strongholds"?

2 Corinthians 10:4 For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds What does this verse mean? What are our weapons? How are they mighty in ...