By Matthew George Easton
Tel-abib - Tongues, Gift of
hill of corn, a place on the river Chebar, the residence of
Ezekiel (Ezek. 3:15). The site is unknown.
Telaim - young lambs, a place at which Saul gathered his army to fight against Amalek (1 Sam. 15:4); probably the same as Telem (2).
Telassar - or Thelasar, (Isa. 37:12; 2 Kings 19:12), a province in the south-east of Assyria, probably in Babylonia. Some have identified it with Tel Afer, a place in Mesopotamia, some 30 miles from Sinjar.
Telem - oppression. (1.) A porter of the temple in the time of Ezra (10:24).
(2.) A town in the southern border of Judah (Josh. 15:24); probably the same as Telaim.
Tel-haresha - hill of the wood, a place in Babylon from which some captive Jews returned to Jerusalem (Ezra 2:59; Neh. 7:61).
Tel-melah - hill of salt, a place in Babylon from which the Jews returned (id.).
Tema - south; desert, one of the sons of Ishmael, and father of a tribe so called (Gen. 25:15; 1 Chr. 1:30; Job 6:19; Isa. 21:14; Jer. 25:23) which settled at a place to which he gave his name, some 250 miles south-east of Edom, on the route between Damascus and Mecca, in the northern part of the Arabian peninsula, toward the Syrian desert; the modern Teyma'.
Teman - id. (1.) A grandson of Esau, one of the "dukes of Edom" (Gen. 36:11, 15, 42).
(2.) A place in Southern Idumea, the land of "the sons of the east," frequently mentioned in the Old Testament. It was noted for the wisdom of its inhabitants (Amos 1:12; Obad. 1:8; Jer. 49:7; Ezek. 25:13). It was divided from the hills of Paran by the low plain of Arabah (Hab. 3:3).
Temanite - a man of Teman, the designation of Eliphaz, one of Job's three friends (Job 2:11; 22:1).
Temeni - one of the sons of Ashur, the father of Tekoa (1 Chr. 4:6).
Temple - first used of the tabernacle, which is called "the temple of the Lord" (1 Sam. 1:9). In the New Testament the word is used figuratively of Christ's human body (John 2:19, 21). Believers are called "the temple of God" (1 Cor. 3:16, 17). The Church is designated "an holy temple in the Lord" (Eph. 2:21). Heaven is also called a temple (Rev. 7:5). We read also of the heathen "temple of the great goddess Diana" (Acts 19:27).
This word is generally used in Scripture of the sacred house erected on the summit of Mount Moriah for the worship of God. It is called "the temple" (1 Kings 6:17); "the temple [R.V., 'house'] of the Lord" (2 Kings 11:10); "thy holy temple" (Ps. 79:1); "the house of the Lord" (2 Chr. 23:5, 12); "the house of the God of Jacob" (Isa. 2:3); "the house of my glory" (60:7); an "house of prayer" (56:7; Matt. 21:13); "an house of sacrifice" (2 Chr. 7:12); "the house of their sanctuary" (2 Chr. 36:17); "the mountain of the Lord's house" (Isa. 2:2); "our holy and our beautiful house" (64:11); "the holy mount" (27:13); "the palace for the Lord God" (1 Chr. 29:1); "the tabernacle of witness" (2 Chr. 24:6); "Zion" (Ps. 74:2; 84:7). Christ calls it "my Father's house" (John 2:16).
Temple, Herod's - The temple erected by the exiles on their return from Babylon had stood for about five hundred years, when Herod the Great became king of Judea. The building had suffered considerably from natural decay as well as from the assaults of hostile armies, and Herod, desirous of gaining the favour of the Jews, proposed to rebuild it. This offer was accepted, and the work was begun (B.C. 18), and carried out at great labour and expense, and on a scale of surpassing splendour. The main part of the building was completed in ten years, but the erection of the outer courts and the embellishment of the whole were carried on during the entire period of our Lord's life on earth (John 2:16, 19-21), and the temple was completed only A.D. 65. But it was not long permitted to exist. Within forty years after our Lord's crucifixion, his prediction of its overthrow was accomplished (Luke 19: 41-44). The Roman legions took the city of Jerusalem by storm, and notwithstanding the strenuous efforts Titus made to preserve the temple, his soldiers set fire to it in several places, and it was utterly destroyed (A.D. 70), and was never rebuilt.
Several remains of Herod's stately temple have by recent explorations been brought to light. It had two courts, one intended for the Israelites only, and the other, a large outer court, called "the court of the Gentiles," intended for the use of strangers of all nations. These two courts were separated by a low wall, as Josephus states, some 4 1/2 feet high, with thirteen openings. Along the top of this dividing wall, at regular intervals, were placed pillars bearing in Greek an inscription to the effect that no stranger was, on the pain of death, to pass from the court of the Gentiles into that of the Jews. At the entrance to a graveyard at the north-western angle of the Haram wall, a stone was discovered by M. Ganneau in 1871, built into the wall, bearing the following inscription in Greek capitals: "No stranger is to enter within the partition wall and enclosure around the sanctuary. Whoever is caught will be responsible to himself for his death, which will ensue."
There can be no doubt that the stone thus discovered was one of those originally placed on the boundary wall which separated the Jews from the Gentiles, of which Josephus speaks.
It is of importance to notice that the word rendered "sanctuary" in the inscription was used in a specific sense of the inner court, the court of the Israelites, and is the word rendered "temple" in John 2:15 and Acts 21:28, 29. When Paul speaks of the middle wall of partition (Eph. 2:14), he probably makes allusion to this dividing wall. Within this partition wall stood the temple proper, consisting of, (1) the court of the women, 8 feet higher than the outer court; (2) 10 feet higher than this court was the court of Israel; (3) the court of the priests, again 3 feet higher; and lastly (4) the temple floor, 8 feet above that; thus in all 29 feet above the level of the outer court.
The summit of Mount Moriah, on which the temple stood, is now occupied by the Haram esh-Sherif, i.e., "the sacred enclosure." This enclosure is about 1,500 feet from north to south, with a breadth of about 1,000 feet, covering in all a space of about 35 acres. About the centre of the enclosure is a raised platform, 16 feet above the surrounding space, and paved with large stone slabs, on which stands the Mohammedan mosque called Kubbet es-Sahkra i.e., the "Dome of the Rock," or the Mosque of Omar. This mosque covers the site of Solomon's temple. In the centre of the dome there is a bare, projecting rock, the highest part of Moriah (q.v.), measuring 60 feet by 40, standing 6 feet above the floor of the mosque, called the sahkra, i.e., "rock." Over this rock the altar of burnt-offerings stood. It was the threshing-floor of Araunah the Jebusite. The exact position on this "sacred enclosure" which the temple occupied has not been yet definitely ascertained. Some affirm that Herod's temple covered the site of Solomon's temple and palace, and in addition enclosed a square of 300 feet at the south-western angle. The temple courts thus are supposed to have occupied the southern portion of the "enclosure," forming in all a square of more than 900 feet. It is argued by others that Herod's temple occupied a square of 600 feet at the south-west of the "enclosure."
Temple, Solomon's - Before his death David had "with all his might" provided materials in great abundance for the building of the temple on the summit of Mount Moriah (1 Chr. 22:14; 29:4; 2 Chr. 3:1), on the east of the city, on the spot where Abraham had offered up Isaac (Gen. 22:1-14). In the beginning of his reign Solomon set about giving effect to the desire that had been so earnestly cherished by his father, and prepared additional materials for the building. From subterranean quarries at Jerusalem he obtained huge blocks of stone for the foundations and walls of the temple. These stones were prepared for their places in the building under the eye of Tyrian master-builders. He also entered into a compact with Hiram II., king of Tyre, for the supply of whatever else was needed for the work, particularly timber from the forests of Lebanon, which was brought in great rafts by the sea to Joppa, whence it was dragged to Jerusalem (1 Kings 5). As the hill on which the temple was to be built did not afford sufficient level space, a huge wall of solid masonry of great height, in some places more than 200 feet high, was raised across the south of the hill, and a similar wall on the eastern side, and in the spaces between were erected many arches and pillars, thus raising up the general surface to the required level. Solomon also provided for a sufficient water supply for the temple by hewing in the rocky hill vast cisterns, into which water was conveyed by channels from the "pools" near Bethlehem. One of these cisterns, the "great sea," was capable of containing three millions of gallons. The overflow was led off by a conduit to the Kidron.
In all these preparatory undertakings a space of about three years was occupied; and now the process of the erection of the great building began, under the direction of skilled Phoenician builders and workmen, in the fourth year of Solomon's reign, 480 years after the Exodus (1 Kings 6; 2 Chr. 3). Many thousands of labourers and skilled artisans were employed in the work. Stones prepared in the quarries underneath the city (1 Kings 5:17, 18) of huge dimension (see QUARRIES ) were gradually placed on the massive walls, and closely fitted together without any mortar between, till the whole structure was completed. No sound of hammer or axe or any tool of iron was heard as the structure arose (6:7). "Like some tall palm the noiseless fabric sprang." The building was 60 cubits long, 20 cubits wide, and 30 cubits high. The engineers of the Palestine Exploration Fund, in their explorations around the temple area, discovered what is believed to have been the "chief corner stone" of the temple, "the most interesting stone in the world." It lies at the bottom of the south-eastern angle, and is 3 feet 8 inches high by 14 feet long. It rests on the solid rock at a depth of 79 feet 3 inches below the present surface. (See PINNACLE.) In examining the walls the engineers were "struck with admiration at the vastness of the blocks and the general excellence of the workmanship."
At length, in the autumn of the eleventh year of his reign, seven and a half years after it had been begun, the temple was completed in all its architectural magnificence and beauty. For thirteen years there it stood, on the summit of Moriah, silent and unused. The reasons for this strange delay in its consecration are unknown. At the close of these thirteen years preparations for the dedication of the temple were made on a scale of the greatest magnificence. The ark was solemnly brought from the tent in which David had deposited it to the place prepared for it in the temple, and the glory-cloud, the symbol of the divine presence, filled the house. Then Solomon ascended a platform which had been erected for him, in the sight of all the people, and lifting up his hands to heaven poured out his heart to God in prayer (1 Kings 8; 2 Chr. 6, 7). The feast of dedication, which lasted seven days, followed by the feast of tabernacles, marked a new era in the history of Israel. On the eighth day of the feast of tabernacles, Solomon dismissed the vast assemblage of the people, who returned to their homes filled with joy and gladness, "Had Solomon done no other service beyond the building of the temple, he would still have influenced the religious life of his people down to the latest days. It was to them a perpetual reminder and visible symbol of God's presence and protection, a strong bulwark of all the sacred traditions of the law, a witness to duty, an impulse to historic study, an inspiration of sacred song."
The temple consisted of, (1.) The oracle or most holy place (1 Kings 6:19; 8:6), called also the "inner house" (6:27), and the "holiest of all" (Heb. 9:3). It was 20 cubits in length, breadth, and height. It was floored and wainscotted with cedar (1 Kings 6:16), and its walls and floor were overlaid with gold (6:20, 21, 30). There was a two-leaved door between it and the holy place overlaid with gold (2 Chr. 4:22); also a veil of blue purple and crimson and fine linen (2 Chr. 3:14; comp. Ex. 26:33). It had no windows (1 Kings 8:12). It was indeed the dwelling-place of God. (2.) The holy place (q.v.), 1 Kings 8:8-10, called also the "greater house" (2 Chr. 3:5) and the "temple" (1 Kings 6:17). (3.) The porch or entrance before the temple on the east (1 Kings 6:3; 2 Chr. 3:4; 29:7). In the porch stood the two pillars Jachin and Boaz (1 Kings 7:21; 2 Kings 11:14; 23:3). (4.) The chambers, which were built about the temple on the southern, western, and northern sides (1 Kings 6:5-10). These formed a part of the building.
Round about the building were, (1.) The court of the priests (2 Chr. 4:9), called the "inner court" (1 Kings 6:36). It contained the altar of burnt-offering (2 Chr. 15:8), the brazen sea (4:2-5, 10), and ten lavers (1 Kings 7:38, 39). (2.) The great court, which surrounded the whole temple (2 Chr. 4:9). Here the people assembled to worship God (Jer. 19:14; 26:2).
This temple erected by Solomon was many times pillaged during the course of its history, (1) 1 Kings 14:25, 26; (2) 2 Kings 14:14; (3) 2 Kings 16:8, 17, 18; (4) 2 Kings 18:15, 16. At last it was pillaged and destroyed by Nebuchadnezzar (2 Kings 24:13; 2 Chr. 36:7). He burned the temple, and carried all its treasures with him to Babylon (2 Kings 25:9-17; 2 Chr. 36:19; Isa. 64:11). These sacred vessels were at length, at the close of the Captivity, restored to the Jews by Cyrus (Ezra 1:7-11).
Temple, the Second - After the return from captivity, under Zerubbabel (q.v.) and the high priest Jeshua, arrangements were almost immediately made to reorganize the long-desolated kingdom. The body of pilgrims, forming a band of 42,360, including children, having completed the long and dreary journey of some four months, from the banks of the Euphrates to Jerusalem, were animated in all their proceeding by a strong religious impulse, and therefore one of their first cares was to restore their ancient worship by rebuilding the temple. On the invitation of Zerubbabel, the governor, who showed them a remarkable example of liberality by contributing personally 1,000 golden darics (probably about $6,000), besides other gifts, the people with great enthusiasm poured their gifts into the sacred treasury (Ezra 2). First they erected and dedicated the altar of Jehovah on the exact spot where it had formerly stood, and they then cleared away the charred heaps of debris which occupied the site of the old temple; and in the second month of the second year (B.C. 535), amid great public excitement and rejoicing (Ps. 116; 117; 118), the foundations of the second temple were laid. A wide interest was felt in this great movement, although it was regarded with mingled feelings by the spectators (Hag. 2:3; Zech. 4:10). The Samaritans made proposals for a co-operation in the work. Zerubbabel and Jeshua and the elders, however, declined all such cooperation: Judah must build the temple without help. Immediately evil reports were spread regarding the Jews. The Samaritans sought to "frustrate their purpose" (Ezra 4:5), and sent messengers to Ecbatana and Susa, with the result that the work was suspended. Seven years after this Cyrus died ingloriously, having killed himself in Syria when on his way back from Egypt to the east, and was succeeded by his son Cambyses (B.C. 529-522), on whose death the "false Smerdis," an imposter, occupied the throne for some seven or eight months, and then Darius Hystaspes became king (B.C. 522). In the second year of this monarch the work of rebuilding the temple was resumed and carried forward to its completion (Ezra 5: 6-17; 6:1-15), under the stimulus of the earnest counsels and admonitions of the prophets Haggai and Zechariah. It was ready for consecration in the spring of B.C. 516, twenty years after the return from captivity.
This second temple had not the ark, the Urim and Thummim, the holy oil, the sacred fire, the tables of stone, the pot of manna, and Aaron's rod. As in the tabernacle, there was in it only one golden lamp for the holy place, one table of shewbread, and the incense altar, with golden censers, and many of the vessels of gold that had belonged to Solomon's temple that had been carried to Babylon but restored by Cyrus (Ezra 1:7-11).
This second temple also differed from the first in that, while in the latter there were numerous "trees planted in the courts of the Lord," there were none in the former. The second temple also had for the first time a space, being a part of the outer court, provided for proselytes who were worshippers of Jehovah, although not subject to the laws of Judaism.
The temple, when completed, was consecrated amid great rejoicings on the part of all the people (Ezra 6:16), although there were not wanting outward evidences that the Jews were no longer an independent people, but were subject to a foreign power.
Hag. 2:9 is rightly rendered in the Revised Version, "The latter glory of this house shall be greater than the former," instead of, "The glory of this latter house," etc., in the Authorized Version. The temple, during the different periods of its existence, is regarded as but one house, the one only house of God (comp. 2:3). The glory here predicted is spiritual glory and not material splendour. "Christ himself, present bodily in the temple on Mount Zion during his life on earth, present spiritually in the Church now, present in the holy city, the heavenly Jerusalem, of which he is the temple, calling forth spiritual worship and devotion is the glory here predicted" (Perowne).
Temptation - (1.) Trial; a being put to the test. Thus God "tempted [Gen. 22: 1; R.V., 'did prove'] Abraham;" and afflictions are said to tempt, i.e., to try, men (James 1:2, 12; comp. Deut. 8:2), putting their faith and patience to the test. (2.) Ordinarily, however, the word means solicitation to that which is evil, and hence Satan is called "the tempter" (Matt. 4:3). Our Lord was in this way tempted in the wilderness. That temptation was not internal, but by a real, active, subtle being. It was not self-sought. It was submitted to as an act of obedience on his part. "Christ was led, driven. An unseen personal force bore him a certain violence is implied in the words" (Matt. 4:1-11).
The scene of the temptation of our Lord is generally supposed to have been the mountain of Quarantania (q.v.), "a high and precipitous wall of rock, 1,200 or 1,500 feet above the plain west of Jordan, near Jericho."
Temptation is common to all (Dan. 12:10; Zech. 13:9; Ps. 66:10; Luke 22:31, 40; Heb. 11:17; James 1:12; 1 Pet. 1:7; 4:12). We read of the temptation of Joseph (Gen. 39), of David (2 Sam. 24; 1 Chr. 21), of Hezekiah (2 Chr. 32:31), of Daniel (Dan. 6), etc. So long as we are in this world we are exposed to temptations, and need ever to be on our watch against them.
Tent - (1.) Heb. 'ohel (Gen. 9:21, 27). This word is used also of a dwelling or habitation (1 Kings 8:66; Isa. 16:5; Jer. 4:20), and of the temple (Ezek. 41:1). When used of the tabernacle, as in 1 Kings 1:39, it denotes the covering of goat's hair which was placed over the mishcan.
(2.) Heb. mishcan (Cant. 1:8), used also of a dwelling (Job 18:21; Ps. 87:2), the grave (Isa. 22:16; comp. 14:18), the temple (Ps. 46:4; 84:2; 132:5), and of the tabernacle (Ex. 25:9; 26:1; 40:9; Num. 1:50, 53; 10:11). When distinguished from 'ohel, it denotes the twelve interior curtains which lay upon the framework of the tabernacle (q.v.).
(3.) Heb. kubbah (Num. 25:8), a dome-like tent devoted to the impure worship of Baal-peor.
(4.) Heb. succah (2 Sam. 11:11), a tent or booth made of green boughs or branches (see Gen. 33:17; Lev. 23:34, 42; Ps. 18:11; Jonah 4:5; Isa. 4:6; Neh. 8:15-17, where the word is variously rendered).
Jubal was "the father of such as dwell in tents" (Gen. 4:20). The patriarchs were "dwellers in tents" (Gen. 9:21, 27; 12:8; 13:12; 26:17); and during their wilderness wanderings all Israel dwelt in tents (Ex. 16:16; Deut. 33:18; Josh. 7:24). Tents have always occupied a prominent place in Eastern life (1 Sam. 17:54; 2 Kings 7:7; Ps. 120:5; Cant. 1:5). Paul the apostle's occupation was that of a tent-maker (Acts 18:3); i.e., perhaps a maker of tent cloth.
Tenth deal - i.e., the tenth part of an ephah (as in the R.V.), equal to an omer or six pints. The recovered leper, to complete his purification, was required to bring a trespass, a sin, and a burnt offering, and to present a meal offering, a tenth deal or an omer of flour for each, with oil to make it into bread or cakes (Lev. 14:10, 21; comp. Ex. 16:36; 29:40).
Terah - the wanderer; loiterer, for some unknown reason emigrated with his family from his native mountains in the north to the plains of Mesopotamia. He had three sons, Haran, Nahor, and Abraham, and one daughter, Sarah. He settled in "Ur of the Chaldees," where his son Haran died, leaving behind him his son Lot. Nahor settled at Haran, a place on the way to Ur. Terah afterwards migrated with Abraham (probably his youngest son) and Lot (his grandson), together with their families, from Ur, intending to go with them to Canaan; but he tarried at Haran, where he spent the remainder of his days, and died at the age of two hundred and five years (Gen. 11:24-32; Josh. 24:2). What a wonderful part the descendants of this Chaldean shepherd have played in the history of the world!
Teraphim - givers of prosperity, idols in human shape, large or small, analogous to the images of ancestors which were revered by the Romans. In order to deceive the guards sent by Saul to seize David, Michal his wife prepared one of the household teraphim, putting on it the goat's-hair cap worn by sleepers and invalids, and laid it in a bed, covering it with a mantle. She pointed it out to the soldiers, and alleged that David was confined to his bed by a sudden illness (1 Sam. 19:13-16). Thus she gained time for David's escape. It seems strange to read of teraphim, images of ancestors, preserved for superstitious purposes, being in the house of David. Probably they had been stealthily brought by Michal from her father's house. "Perhaps," says Bishop Wordsworth, "Saul, forsaken by God and possessed by the evil spirit, had resorted to teraphim (as he afterwards resorted to witchcraft); and God overruled evil for good, and made his very teraphim (by the hand of his own daughter) to be an instrument for David's escape.", Deane's David, p. 32. Josiah attempted to suppress this form of idolatry (2 Kings 23:24). The ephod and teraphim are mentioned together in Hos. 3:4. It has been supposed by some (Cheyne's Hosea) that the "ephod" here mentioned, and also in Judg. 8:24-27, was not the part of the sacerdotal dress so called (Ex. 28:6-14), but an image of Jehovah overlaid with gold or silver (comp. Judg. 17, 18; 1 Sam. 21:9; 23:6, 9; 30:7, 8), and is thus associated with the teraphim. (See THUMMIM.)
Terebinth - (R.V. marg. of Deut. 11:30, etc.), the Pistacia terebinthus of botanists; a tree very common in the south and east of Palestine. (See OAK.)
Teresh - severe, a eunuch or chamberlain in the palace of Ahasuerus, who conspired with another to murder him. The plot was detected by Mordecai, and the conspirators were put to death (Esther 2:21; 6:2).
Tertius - the third, a Roman Christian whom Paul employed as his amanuensis in writing his epistle to the Romans (16:22).
Tertullus - a modification of "Tertius;" a Roman advocate, whom the Jews employed to state their case against Paul in the presence of Felix (Acts 24:1-9). The charges he adduced against the apostle were, "First, that he created disturbances among the Romans throughout the empire, an offence against the Roman government (crimen majestatis). Secondly, that he was a ringleader of the sect of the Nazarenes; disturbed the Jews in the exercise of their religion, guaranteed by the state; introduced new gods, a thing prohibited by the Romans. And thirdly, that he attempted to profane the temple, a crime which the Jews were permitted to punish."
Testament - occurs twelve times in the New Testament (Heb. 9:15, etc.) as the rendering of the Gr. diatheke, which is twenty times rendered "covenant" in the Authorized Version, and always so in the Revised Version. The Vulgate translates incorrectly by testamentum, whence the names "Old" and "New Testament," by which we now designate the two sections into which the Bible is divided. (See BIBLE.)
Testimony - (1.) Witness or evidence (2 Thess. 1:10).
(2.) The Scriptures, as the revelation of God's will (2 Kings 11:12; Ps. 19:7; 119:88; Isa. 8:16, 20).
(3.) The altar raised by the Gadites and Reubenites (Josh. 22:10).
Testimony, Tabernacle of - the tabernacle, the great glory of which was that it contained "the testimony", i.e., the "two tables" (Ex. 38:21). The ark in which these tables were deposited was called the "ark of the testimony" (40:3), and also simply the "testimony" (27:21; 30:6).
Tetrarch - strictly the ruler over the fourth part of a province; but the word denotes a ruler of a province generally (Matt. 14:1; Luke 3:1, 19; 9:7; Acts 13:1). Herod and Phasael, the sons of Antipater, were the first tetrarchs in Palestine. Herod the tetrarch had the title of king (Matt. 14:9).
Thaddaeus - breast, the name of one of the apostles (Mark 3:18), called "Lebbaeus" in Matt. 10:3, and in Luke 6:16, "Judas the brother of James;" while John (14:22), probably referring to the same person, speaks of "Judas, not Iscariot." These different names all designate the same person, viz., Jude or Judas, the author of the epistle.
Thahash - a badger, a son of Nahor, Abraham's brother (Gen. 22:24).
Tharshish - (1 Kings 10:22; 22:48). See TARSHISH.
Theatre - only mentioned in Acts 19:29, 31. The ruins of this theatre at Ephesus still exist, and they show that it was a magnificent structure, capable of accommodating some 56,700 persons. It was the largest structure of the kind that ever existed. Theatres, as places of amusement, were unknown to the Jews.
Thebez - brightness, a place some 11 miles north-east of Shechem, on the road to Scythopolis, the modern Tabas. Abimelech led his army against this place, because of its participation in the conspiracy of the men of Shechem; but as he drew near to the strong tower to which its inhabitants had fled for safety, and was about to set fire to it, a woman cast a fragment of millstone at him, and "all to brake his skull" i.e., "altogether brake," etc. His armourbearer thereupon "thrust him through, and he died" (Judg. 9:50-55).
Theft - Punished by restitution, the proportions of which are noted in 2 Sam. 12:6. If the thief could not pay the fine, he was to be sold to a Hebrew master till he could pay (Ex. 22:1-4). A night-thief might be smitten till he died, and there would be no blood-guiltiness for him (22:2). A man-stealer was to be put to death (21:16). All theft is forbidden (Ex. 20:15; 21:16; Lev. 19:11; Deut. 5:19; 24:7; Ps. 50:18; Zech. 5:3; Matt. 19:18; Rom. 13:9; Eph. 4:28; 1 Pet. 4:15).
Theocracy - a word first used by Josephus to denote that the Jews were under the direct government of God himself. The nation was in all things subject to the will of their invisible King. All the people were the servants of Jehovah, who ruled over their public and private affairs, communicating to them his will through the medium of the prophets. They were the subjects of a heavenly, not of an earthly, king. They were Jehovah's own subjects, ruled directly by him (comp. 1 Sam. 8:6-9).
Theophilus - lover of God, a Christian, probably a Roman, to whom Luke dedicated both his Gospel (Luke 1:3) and the Acts of the Apostles (1:1). Nothing beyond this is known of him. From the fact that Luke applies to him the title "most excellent", the same title Paul uses in addressing Felix (Acts 23:26; 24:3) and Festus (26:25), it has been concluded that Theophilus was a person of rank, perhaps a Roman officer.
Thessalonians, Epistles to the - The first epistle to the Thessalonians was the first of all Paul's epistles. It was in all probability written from Corinth, where he abode a "long time" (Acts 18:11, 18), early in the period of his residence there, about the end of A.D. 52.
The occasion of its being written was the return of Timotheus from Macedonia, bearing tidings from Thessalonica regarding the state of the church there (Acts 18:1-5; 1 Thess. 3:6). While, on the whole, the report of Timothy was encouraging, it also showed that divers errors and misunderstandings regarding the tenor of Paul's teaching had crept in amongst them. He addresses them in this letter with the view of correcting these errors, and especially for the purpose of exhorting them to purity of life, reminding them that their sanctification was the great end desired by God regarding them.
The subscription erroneously states that this epistle was written from Athens.
The second epistle to the Thessalonians was probably also written from Corinth, and not many months after the first.
The occasion of the writing of this epistle was the arrival of tidings that the tenor of the first epistle had been misunderstood, especially with reference to the second advent of Christ. The Thessalonians had embraced the idea that Paul had taught that "the day of Christ was at hand", that Christ's coming was just about to happen. This error is corrected (2:1-12), and the apostle prophetically announces what first must take place. "The apostasy" was first to arise. Various explanations of this expression have been given, but that which is most satisfactory refers it to the Church of Rome.
Thessalonica - a large and populous city on the Thermaic bay. It was the capital of one of the four Roman districts of Macedonia, and was ruled by a praetor. It was named after Thessalonica, the wife of Cassander, who built the city. She was so called by her father, Philip, because he first heard of her birth on the day of his gaining a victory over the Thessalians. On his second missionary journey, Paul preached in the synagogue here, the chief synagogue of the Jews in that part of Macedonia, and laid the foundations of a church (Acts 17:1-4; 1 Thes. 1:9). The violence of the Jews drove him from the city, when he fled to Berea (Acts 17:5-10). The "rulers of the city" before whom the Jews "drew Jason," with whom Paul and Silas lodged, are in the original called politarchai, an unusual word, which was found, however, inscribed on an arch in Thessalonica. This discovery confirms the accuracy of the historian. Paul visited the church here on a subsequent occasion (20:1-3). This city long retained its importance. It is the most important town of European Turkey, under the name of Saloniki, with a mixed population of about 85,000.
Theudas - thanksgiving, referred to by Gamaliel in his speech before the council at Jerusalem (Acts 5:36). He headed an insurrection against the Roman authority. Beyond this nothing is known of him.
Thick clay - (Hab. 2:6) is correctly rendered in the Revised Version "pledges." The Chaldean power is here represented as a rapacious usurer, accumulating the wealth that belonged to others.
Thieves, The two - (Luke 23:32, 39-43), robbers, rather brigands, probably followers of Barabbas. Our Lord's cross was placed between those of the "malefactors," to add to the ignominy of his position. According to tradition, Demas or Dismas was the name of the penitent thief hanging on the right, and Gestas of the impenitent on the left.
Thistle - (1.) Heb. hoah (2 Kings 14:9; Job 31:40). In Job 41:2 the Hebrew word is rendered "thorn," but in the Revised Version "hook." It is also rendered "thorn" in 2 Chr. 33:11; Prov. 26:9; Cant. 2:2; "brambles" in Isa. 34:13. It is supposed to be a variety of the wild plum-tree, but by some it is regarded as the common thistle, of which there are many varieties in Palestine.
(2.) Heb. dardar, meaning "a plant growing luxuriantly" (Gen. 3:18; Hos. 10:8); Gr. tribolos, "a triple point" (Matt. 7:16; Heb. 6:8, "brier," R.V. "thistle"). This was probably the star-thistle, called by botanists Centaurea calcitropa, or "caltrops," a weed common in corn-fields. (See THORNS.)
Thomas - twin, one of the twelve (Matt. 10:3; Mark 3:18, etc.). He was also called Didymus (John 11:16; 20:24), which is the Greek equivalent of the Hebrew name. All we know regarding him is recorded in the fourth Gospel (John 11:15, 16; 14:4, 5; 20:24, 25, 26-29). From the circumstance that in the lists of the apostles he is always mentioned along with Matthew, who was the son of Alphaeus (Mark 3:18), and that these two are always followed by James, who was also the son of Alphaeus, it has been supposed that these three, Matthew, Thomas, and James, were brothers.
Thorn - (1.) Heb. hedek (Prov. 15:19), rendered "brier" in Micah 7:4. Some thorny plant, of the Solanum family, suitable for hedges. This is probably the so-called "apple of Sodom," which grows very abundantly in the Jordan valley. "It is a shrubby plant, from 3 to 5 feet high, with very branching stems, thickly clad with spines, like those of the English brier, with leaves very large and woolly on the under side, and thorny on the midriff."
(2.) Heb. kotz (Gen. 3:18; Hos. 10:8), rendered akantha by the LXX. In the New Testament this word akantha is also rendered "thorns" (Matt. 7:16; 13:7; Heb. 6:8). The word seems to denote any thorny or prickly plant (Jer. 12:13). It has been identified with the Ononis spinosa by some.
(3.) Heb. na'atzutz (Isa. 7:19; 55:13). This word has been interpreted as denoting the Zizyphus spina Christi, or the jujube-tree. It is supposed by some that the crown of thorns placed in wanton cruelty by the Roman soldiers on our Saviour's brow before his crucifixion was plaited of branches of this tree. It overruns a great part of the Jordan valley. It is sometimes called the lotus-tree. "The thorns are long and sharp and recurved, and often create a festering wound." It often grows to a great size. (See CROWN OF THORNS.)
(4.) Heb. atad (Ps. 58:9) is rendered in the LXX. and Vulgate by Rhamnus, or Lycium Europoeum, a thorny shrub, which is common all over Palestine. From its resemblance to the box it is frequently called the box-thorn.
Thorn in the flesh - (2 Cor. 12:7-10). Many interpretations have been given of this passage. (1.) Roman Catholic writers think that it denotes suggestions to impiety.
(2.) Luther, Calvin, and other Reformers interpret the expression as denoting temptation to unbelief.
(3.) Others suppose the expression refers to "a pain in the ear or head," epileptic fits, or, in general, to some severe physical infirmity, which was a hindrance to the apostle in his work (comp. 1 Cor. 2:3; 2 Cor. 10:10; 11:30; Gal. 4:13, 14; 6:17). With a great amount of probability, it has been alleged that his malady was defect of sight, consequent on the dazzling light which shone around him at his conversion, acute opthalmia. This would account for the statements in Gal. 4:14; 2 Cor. 10:10; also Acts 23:5, and for his generally making use of the help of an amanuensis (comp. Rom. 16:22, etc.).
(4.) Another view which has been maintained is that this "thorn" consisted in an infirmity of temper, to which he occasionally gave way, and which interfered with his success (comp. Acts 15:39; 23:2-5). If we consider the fact, "which the experience of God's saints in all ages has conclusively established, of the difficulty of subduing an infirmity of temper, as well as the pain, remorse, and humiliation such an infirmity is wont to cause to those who groan under it, we may be inclined to believe that not the least probable hypothesis concerning the 'thorn' or 'stake' in the flesh is that the loving heart of the apostle bewailed as his sorest trial the misfortune that, by impatience in word, he had often wounded those for whom he would willingly have given his life" (Lias's Second Cor., Introd.).
Thousands - (Micah 5:2), another name for "families" or "clans" (see Num. 1:16; 10:4; Josh. 22:14, 21). Several "thousands" or "families" made up a "tribe."
Threshing - See AGRICULTURE.
Threshold - (1.) Heb. miphtan, probably a projecting beam at a higher point than the threshold proper (1 Sam. 5:4,5; Ezek. 9:3; 10:4,18; 46:2; 47:1); also rendered "door" and "door-post."
(2.) 'Asuppim, pl. (Neh. 12:25), rendered correctly "storehouses" in the Revised Version. In 1 Chr. 26:15, 17 the Authorized Version retains the word as a proper name, while in the Revised Version it is translated "storehouses."
Throne - (Heb. kiss'e), a royal chair or seat of dignity (Deut. 17:18; 2 Sam. 7:13; Ps. 45:6); an elevated seat with a canopy and hangings, which cover it. It denotes the seat of the high priest in 1 Sam. 1:9; 4:13, and of a provincial governor in Neh. 3:7 and Ps. 122:5. The throne of Solomon is described at length in 1 Kings 10:18-20.
Thummim - perfection (LXX., "truth;" Vulg., "veritas"), Ex. 28:30; Deut. 33:8; Judg. 1:1; 20:18; 1 Sam. 14:3,18; 23:9; 2 Sam. 21:1. What the "Urim and Thummim" were cannot be determined with any certainty. All we certainly know is that they were a certain divinely-given means by which God imparted, through the high priest, direction and counsel to Israel when these were needed. The method by which this was done can be only a matter of mere conjecture. They were apparently material objects, quite distinct from the breastplate, but something added to it after all the stones had been set in it, something in addition to the breastplate and its jewels. They may have been, as some suppose, two small images, like the teraphim (comp. Judg. 17:5; 18:14, 17, 20; Hos. 3:4), which were kept in the bag of the breastplate, by which, in some unknown way, the high priest could give forth his divinely imparted decision when consulted. They were probably lost at the destruction of the temple by Nebuchadnezzar. They were never seen after the return from captivity.
Thunder - often referred to in Scripture (Job 40:9; Ps. 77:18; 104:7). James and John were called by our Lord "sons of thunder" (Mark 3:17). In Job 39:19, instead of "thunder," as in the Authorized Version, the Revised Version translates (ra'amah) by "quivering main" (marg., "shaking"). Thunder accompanied the giving of the law at Sinai (Ex. 19:16). It was regarded as the voice of God (Job 37:2; Ps. 18:13; 81:7; comp. John 12:29). In answer to Samuel's prayer (1 Sam. 12:17, 18), God sent thunder, and "all the people greatly feared," for at such a season (the wheat-harvest) thunder and rain were almost unknown in Palestine.
Thyatira - a city of Asia Minor, on the borders of Lydia and Mysia. Its modern name is Ak-hissar, i.e., "white castle." Here was one of the seven churches (Rev. 1:11; 2:18-28). Lydia, the seller of purple, or rather of cloth dyed with this colour, was from this city (Acts 16:14). It was and still is famous for its dyeing. Among the ruins, inscriptions have been found relating to the guild of dyers in that city in ancient times.
Thyine wood - mentioned only in Rev. 18:12 among the articles which would cease to be purchased when Babylon fell. It was called citrus, citron wood, by the Romans. It was the Callitris quadrivalvis of botanists, of the cone-bearing order of trees, and of the cypress tribe of this order. The name of this wood is derived from the Greek word thuein, "to sacrifice," and it was so called because it was burnt in sacrifices, on account of its fragrance. The wood of this tree was reckoned very valuable, and was used for making articles of furniture by the Greeks and Romans. Like the cedars of Lebanon, it is disappearing from the forests of Palestine.
Tiberias - a city, the modern Tubarich, on the western shore of the Sea of Tiberias. It is said to have been founded by Herod Antipas (A.D. 16), on the site of the ruins of an older city called Rakkath, and to have been thus named by him after the Emperor Tiberius. It is mentioned only three times in the history of our Lord (John 6:1,23; 21:1).
In 1837 about one-half of the inhabitants perished by an earthquake. The population of the city is now about six thousand, nearly the one-half being Jews. "We do not read that our Lord ever entered this city. The reason of this is probably to be found in the fact that it was practically a heathen city, though standing upon Jewish soil. Herod, its founder, had brought together the arts of Greece, the idolatry of Rome, and the gross lewdness of Asia. There were in it a theatre for the performance of comedies, a forum, a stadium, a palace roofed with gold in imitation of those in Italy, statues of the Roman gods, and busts of the deified emperors. He who was not sent but to the lost sheep of the house of Israel might well hold himself aloof from such scenes as these" (Manning's Those Holy Fields).
After the fall of Jerusalem (A.D. 70), Tiberias became one of the chief residences of the Jews in Palestine. It was for more than three hundred years their metropolis. From about A.D. 150 the Sanhedrin settled here, and established rabbinical schools, which rose to great celebrity. Here the Jerusalem (or Palestinian) Talmud was compiled about the beginning of the fifth century. To this same rabbinical school also we are indebted for the Masora, a "body of traditions which transmitted the readings of the Hebrew text of the Old Testament, and preserved, by means of the vowel-system, the pronunciation of the Hebrew." In its original form, and in all manuscripts, the Hebrew is written without vowels; hence, when it ceased to be a spoken language, the importance of knowing what vowels to insert between the consonants. This is supplied by the Masora, and hence these vowels are called the "Masoretic vowel-points."
Tiberias, Sea of - called also the Sea of Galilee (q.v.) and of Gennesaret. In the Old Testament it is called the Sea of Chinnereth or Chinneroth. John (21:1) is the only evangelist who so designates this lake. His doing so incidentally confirms the opinion that he wrote after the other evangelists, and at a period subsequent to the taking of Jerusalem (A.D. 70). Tiberias had by this time become an important city, having been spared by the Romans, and made the capital of the province when Jerusalem was destroyed. It thus naturally gave its name to the lake.
Tiberius Caesar - i.e., as known in Roman history, Tiberius Claudius Nero, only mentioned in Luke 3:1. He was the stepson of Augustus, whom he succeeded on the throne, A.D. 14. He was noted for his vicious and infamous life. In the fifteenth year of his reign John the Baptist entered on his public ministry, and under him also our Lord taught and suffered. He died A.D. 37. He is frequently referred to simply as "Caesar" (Matt. 22:17, 21; Mark 12:14, 16, 17; Luke 20:22, 24, 25; 23:2; John 19:12, 15).
Tibni - building of Jehovah, the son of Ginath, a man of some position, whom a considerable number of the people chose as monarch. For the period of four years he contended for the throne with Omri (1 Kings 16:21, 22), who at length gained the mastery, and became sole monarch of Israel.
Tidal - (in the LXX. called "Thorgal"), styled the "king of nations" (Gen.14:1-9). Mentioned as Tudkhula on Arioch's brick (see facing page 139). Goyyim, translated "nations," is the country called Gutium, east of Tigris and north of Elam.
Tiglath-Pileser I. - (not mentioned in Scripture) was the most famous of the monarchs of the first Assyrian empire (about B.C. 1110). After his death, for two hundred years the empire fell into decay. The history of David and Solomon falls within this period. He was succeeded by his son, Shalmaneser II.
Tiglath-Pileser III. - or Tilgath-Pil-neser, the Assyrian throne-name of Pul (q.v.). He appears in the Assyrian records as gaining, in the fifth year of his reign (about B.C. 741), a victory over Azariah (= Uzziah in 2 Chr.26:1), king of Judah, whose achievements are described in 2 Chr. 26:6-15. He is first mentioned in Scripture, however, as gaining a victory over Pekah, king of Israel, and Rezin of Damascus, who were confederates. He put Rezin to death, and punished Pekah by taking a considerable portion of his kingdom, and carrying off (B.C. 734) a vast number of its inhabitants into captivity (2 Kings 15:29; 16:5-9; 1 Chr. 5:6, 26), the Reubenites, the Gadites, and half the tribe of Manasseh whom he settled in Gozan. In the Assyrian annals it is further related that, before he returned from Syria, he held a court at Damascus, and received submission and tribute from the neighbouring kings, among whom were Pekah of Samaria and "Yahu-khazi [i.e., Ahaz], king of Judah" (comp. 2 Kings 16:10-16).
He was the founder of what is called "the second Assyrian empire," an empire meant to embrace the whole world, the centre of which should be Nineveh. He died B.C. 728, and was succeeded by a general of his army, Ulula, who assumed the name Shalmaneser IV.
Timaeus - defiled, the father of blind Bartimaeus (Mark 10:46).
Timbrel - (Heb. toph), a small drum or tambourine; a tabret (q.v.). The antiquity of this musical instrument appears from the scriptural allusions to it (Gen. 31:27; Ex. 15:20; Judg. 11:34, etc.) (See MUSIC.)
Timnah - a portion. (1.) A town of Judah (Josh. 15:10). The Philistines took possession of it in the days of Ahaz (2 Chr. 28:18). It was about 20 miles west of Jerusalem. It has been identified with Timnatha of Dan (Josh. 19:43), and also with Timnath (Judg. 14:1,5).
(2.) A city in the mountains of Judah (Josh.15:57)= Tibna near Jeba'.
(3.) A "duke" or sheik of Edom (Gen. 36:40).
Timnath - Gen. 38:12,14. (1.) Heb. Timnathah, which is appropriately rendered in the Revised Version, Timnah, a town in Judah.
(2.) The town where Samson sojourned, probably identical with "Timnah" (1) (Judg. 14:1-18).
Timnath-heres - portion of the sun, where Joshua was buried (Judg. 2:9). It was "in the mount of Ephraim, in the north side of the hill Gaash," 10 miles south-west of Shechem. The same as the following.
Timnath-serah - remaining portion, the city of Joshua in the hill country of Ephraim, the same as Timnath-heres (Josh. 19:50; 24:30). "Of all sites I have seen," says Lieut. Col. Conder, "none is so striking as that of Joshua's home, surrounded as it is with deep valleys and wild, rugged hills." Opposite the town is a hill, on the northern side of which there are many excavated sepulchres. Among these is the supposed tomb of Joshua, which is said to be "the most striking monument in the country." It is a "square chamber with five excavations in three of its sides, the central one forming a passage leading into a second chamber beyond. A great number of lamp-niches cover the walls of the porch, upwards of two hundred, arranged in vertical rows. A single cavity with a niche for a lamp has been thought to be the resting-place of the warrior-chief of Israel." The modern Kefr Haris, 10 miles south-west of Shechem.
Timnite - a man of Timnah. Samson's father-in-law is so styled (Judg. 15:6).
Timon - honouring, one of the seven deacons at Jerusalem (Acts 6:5). Nothing further is known of him.
Timotheus - the Greek form of the name of Timothy (Acts 16:1, etc.; the R.V. always "Timothy").
Timothy - honouring God, a young disciple who was Paul's companion in many of his journeyings. His mother, Eunice, and his grandmother, Lois, are mentioned as eminent for their piety (2 Tim. 1:5). We know nothing of his father but that he was a Greek (Acts 16:1). He is first brought into notice at the time of Paul's second visit to Lystra (16:2), where he probably resided, and where it seems he was converted during Paul's first visit to that place (1 Tim. 1:2; 2 Tim. 3:11). The apostle having formed a high opinion of his "own son in the faith," arranged that he should become his companion (Acts 16:3), and took and circumcised him, so that he might conciliate the Jews. He was designated to the office of an evangelist (1 Tim. 4:14), and went with Paul in his journey through Phrygia, Galatia, and Mysia; also to Troas and Philippi and Berea (Acts 17:14). Thence he followed Paul to Athens, and was sent by him with Silas on a mission to Thessalonica (17:15; 1 Thess. 3:2). We next find him at Corinth (1 Thess. 1:1; 2 Thess. 1:1) with Paul. He passes now out of sight for a few years, and is again noticed as with the apostle at Ephesus (Acts 19:22), whence he is sent on a mission into Macedonia. He accompanied Paul afterwards into Asia (20:4), where he was with him for some time. When the apostle was a prisoner at Rome, Timothy joined him (Phil. 1:1), where it appears he also suffered imprisonment (Heb. 13:23). During the apostle's second imprisonment he wrote to Timothy, asking him to rejoin him as soon as possible, and to bring with him certain things which he had left at Troas, his cloak and parchments (2 Tim. 4:13). According to tradition, after the apostle's death he settled in Ephesus as his sphere of labour, and there found a martyr's grave.
Timothy, First Epistle to - Paul in this epistle speaks of himself as having left Ephesus for Macedonia (1:3), and hence not Laodicea, as mentioned in the subscription; but probably Philippi, or some other city in that region, was the place where this epistle was written. During the interval between his first and second imprisonments he probably visited the scenes of his former labours in Greece and Asia, and then found his way into Macedonia, whence he wrote this letter to Timothy, whom he had left behind in Ephesus.
It was probably written about A.D. 66 or 67.
The epistle consists mainly, (1) of counsels to Timothy regarding the worship and organization of the Church, and the responsibilities resting on its several members; and (2) of exhortation to faithfulness in maintaining the truth amid surrounding errors.
Timothy, Second Epistle to - was probably written a year or so after the first, and from Rome, where Paul was for a second time a prisoner, and was sent to Timothy by the hands of Tychicus. In it he entreats Timothy to come to him before winter, and to bring Mark with him (comp. Phil. 2:22). He was anticipating that "the time of his departure was at hand" (2 Tim. 4:6), and he exhorts his "son Timothy" to all diligence and steadfastness, and to patience under persecution (1:6-15), and to a faithful discharge of all the duties of his office (4:1-5), with all the solemnity of one who was about to appear before the Judge of quick and dead.
Tin - Heb. bedil (Num. 31:22; Ezek. 22:18, 20), a metal well known in ancient times. It is the general opinion that the Phoenicians of Tyre and Sidon obtained their supplies of tin from the British Isles. In Ezek. 27:12 it is said to have been brought from Tarshish, which was probably a commercial emporium supplied with commodities from other places. In Isa. 1:25 the word so rendered is generally understood of lead, the alloy with which the silver had become mixed (ver. 22). The fire of the Babylonish Captivity would be the means of purging out the idolatrous alloy that had corrupted the people.
Tinkling ornaments - (Isa. 3:18), anklets of silver or gold, etc., such as are still used by women in Syria and the East.
Tiphsah - passing over; ford, one of the boundaries of Solomon's dominions (1 Kings 4:24), probably "Thapsacus, a great and wealthy town on the western bank of the Euphrates," about 100 miles north-east of Tadmor. All the land traffic between the east and the west passed through it. Menahem undertook an expedition against this city, and "smote Tiphsah and all that were therein" (2 Kings 15:16). This expedition implied a march of some 300 miles from Tirzah if by way of Tadmor, and about 400 if by way of Aleppo; and its success showed the strength of the Israelite kingdom, for it was practically a defiance to Assyria. Conder, however, identifies this place with Khurbet Tafsah, some 6 miles west of Shechem.
Tiras - the youngest of the sons of Japheth (Gen. 10:2; 1 Chr. 1:5).
Tires - "To tire" the head is to adorn it (2 Kings 9:30). As a noun the word is derived from "tiara," and is the rendering of the Heb. p'er, a "turban" or an ornament for the head (Ezek. 24:17; R.V., "headtire;" 24:23). In Isa. 3:18 the word saharonim is rendered "round tires like the moon," and in Judg. 8:21, 26 "ornaments," but in both cases "crescents" in the Revised Version.
Tirhakah - the last king of Egypt of the Ethiopian (the fifteenth) dynasty. He was the brother-in-law of So (q.v.). He probably ascended the throne about B.C. 692, having been previously king of Ethiopia (2 Kings 19:9; Isa. 37:9), which with Egypt now formed one nation. He was a great warrior, and but little is known of him. The Assyrian armies under Esarhaddon, and again under Assur-bani-pal, invaded Egypt and defeated Tirhakah, who afterwards retired into Ethiopia, where he died, after reigning twenty-six years.
Tirshatha - a word probably of Persian origin, meaning "severity," denoting a high civil dignity. The Persian governor of Judea is so called (Ezra 2:63; Neh. 7:65, 70). Nehemiah is called by this name in Neh. 8:9; 10:1, and the "governor" (pehah) in 5:18. Probably, therefore, tirshatha=pehah=the modern pasha.
Tirza - pleasantness. (1.) An old royal city of the Canaanites, which was destroyed by Joshua (Josh. 12:24). Jeroboam chose it for his residence, and he removed to it from Shechem, which at first he made the capital of his kingdom. It remained the chief residence of the kings of Israel till Omri took Samaria (1 Kings 14:17; 15:21; 16:6, 8, etc.). Here Zimri perished amid the flames of the palace to which in his despair he had set fire (1 Kings 16:18), and here Menahem smote Shallum (2 Kings 15:14, 16). Solomon refers to its beauty (Cant. 6:4). It has been identified with the modern mud hamlet Teiasir, 11 miles north of Shechem. Others, however, would identify it with Telluza, a village about 6 miles east of Samaria.
(2.) The youngest of Zelophehad's five daughters (Num. 26:33; Josh. 17:3).
Tishbite - Elijah the prophet was thus named (1 Kings 17:1; 21:17, 28, etc.). In 1 Kings 17:1 the word rendered "inhabitants" is in the original the same as that rendered "Tishbite," hence that verse may be read as in the LXX., "Elijah the Tishbite of Tishbi in Gilead." Some interpret this word as meaning "stranger," and read the verse, "Elijah the stranger from among the strangers in Gilead." This designation is probably given to the prophet as denoting that his birthplace was Tishbi, a place in Upper Galilee (mentioned in the apocryphal book of Tobit), from which for some reason he migrated into Gilead. Josephus, the Jewish historian (Ant. 8:13, 2), however, supposes that Tishbi was some place in the land of Gilead. It has been identified by some with el-Ishtib, a some place 22 miles due south of the Sea of Galilee, among the mountains of Gilead.
Tisri - the first month of the civil year, and the seventh of the ecclesiastical year. See ETHANIM (1 Kings 8:2). Called in the Assyrian inscriptions Tasaritu, i.e. "beginning."
Tithe - a tenth of the produce of the earth consecrated and set apart for special purposes. The dedication of a tenth to God was recognized as a duty before the time of Moses. Abraham paid tithes to Melchizedek (Gen. 14:20; Heb. 7:6); and Jacob vowed unto the Lord and said, "Of all that thou shalt give me I will surely give the tenth unto thee."
The first Mosaic law on this subject is recorded in Lev. 27:30-32. Subsequent legislation regulated the destination of the tithes (Num. 18:21-24, 26-28; Deut. 12:5, 6, 11, 17; 14:22, 23). The paying of the tithes was an important part of the Jewish religious worship. In the days of Hezekiah one of the first results of the reformation of religion was the eagerness with which the people brought in their tithes (2 Chr. 31:5, 6). The neglect of this duty was sternly rebuked by the prophets (Amos 4:4; Mal. 3:8-10). It cannot be affirmed that the Old Testament law of tithes is binding on the Christian Church, nevertheless the principle of this law remains, and is incorporated in the gospel (1 Cor. 9:13, 14); and if, as is the case, the motive that ought to prompt to liberality in the cause of religion and of the service of God be greater now than in Old Testament times, then Christians outght to go beyond the ancient Hebrew in consecrating both themselves and their substance to God.
Every Jew was required by the Levitical law to pay three tithes of his property (1) one tithe for the Levites; (2) one for the use of the temple and the great feasts; and (3) one for the poor of the land.
Tittle - a point, (Matt. 5:18; Luke 16:17), the minute point or stroke added to some letters of the Hebrew alphabet to distinguish them from others which they resemble; hence, the very least point.
Titus - honourable, was with Paul and Barnabas at Antioch, and accompanied them to the council at Jerusalem (Gal. 2:1-3; Acts 15:2), although his name nowhere occurs in the Acts of the Apostles. He appears to have been a Gentile, and to have been chiefly engaged in ministering to Gentiles; for Paul sternly refused to have him circumcised, inasmuch as in his case the cause of gospel liberty was at stake. We find him, at a later period, with Paul and Timothy at Ephesus, whence he was sent by Paul to Corinth for the purpose of getting the contributions of the church there in behalf of the poor saints at Jerusalem sent forward (2 Cor. 8:6; 12:18). He rejoined the apostle when he was in Macedonia, and cheered him with the tidings he brought from Corinth (7:6-15). After this his name is not mentioned till after Paul's first imprisonment, when we find him engaged in the organization of the church in Crete, where the apostle had left him for this purpose (Titus 1:5). The last notice of him is in 2 Tim. 4:10, where we find him with Paul at Rome during his second imprisonment. From Rome he was sent into Dalmatia, no doubt on some important missionary errand. We have no record of his death. He is not mentioned in the Acts.
Titus, Epistle to - was probably written about the same time as the first epistle to Timothy, with which it has many affinities. "Both letters were addressed to persons left by the writer to preside in their respective churches during his absence. Both letters are principally occupied in describing the qualifications to be sought for in those whom they should appoint to offices in the church; and the ingredients of this description are in both letters nearly the same. Timothy and Titus are likewise cautioned against the same prevailing corruptions, and in particular against the same misdirection of their cares and studies. This affinity obtains not only in the subject of the letters, which from the similarity of situation in the persons to whom they were addressed might be expected to be somewhat alike, but extends in a great variety of instances to the phrases and expressions. The writer accosts his two friends with the same salutation, and passes on to the business of his letter by the same transition (comp. 1 Tim. 1:2, 3 with Titus 1:4, 5; 1 Tim.1:4 with Titus 1:13, 14; 3:9; 1 Tim. 4:12 with Titus 2:7, 15).", Paley's Horae Paulinae.
The date of its composition may be concluded from the circumstance that it was written after Paul's visit to Crete (Titus 1:5). That visit could not be the one referred to in Acts 27:7, when Paul was on his voyage to Rome as a prisoner, and where he continued a prisoner for two years. We may warrantably suppose that after his release Paul sailed from Rome into Asia and took Crete by the way, and that there he left Titus "to set in order the things that were wanting." Thence he went to Ephesus, where he left Timothy, and from Ephesus to Macedonia, where he wrote First Timothy, and thence to Nicopolis in Epirus, from which place he wrote to Titus, about A.D. 66 or 67.
In the subscription to the epistle it is said to have been written from "Nicopolis of Macedonia," but no such place is known. The subscriptions to the epistles are of no authority, as they are not authentic.
Tob-adonijah - good is Jehovah, my Lord, a Levite sent out by Jehoshaphat to instruct the people of Judah in the law (2 Chr. 17:8).
Tobiah - pleasing to Jehovah, the "servant," the "Ammonite," who joined with those who opposed the rebuilding of Jerusalem after the Exile (Neh. 2:10). He was a man of great influence, which he exerted in opposition to the Jews, and "sent letters" to Nehemiah "to put him in fear" (Neh. 6:17-19). "Eliashib the priest" prepared for him during Nehemiah's absence "a chamber in the courts of the house of God," which on his return grieved Nehemiah sore, and therefore he "cast forth all the household stuff of Tobiah out of the chamber" (13:7, 8).
Tobijah - id., a Levite sent out through Judah by Jehoshaphat to teach the people (2 Chr. 17:8).
Tob, The land of - a district on the east of Jodan, about 13 miles south-east of the Sea of Galilee, to which Jephthah fled from his brethren (Judg. 11:3, 5). It was on the northern boundary of Perea, between Syria and the land of Ammon (2 Sam. 10:6, 8). Its modern name is Taiyibeh.
Tochen - measured, a town of Simeon (1 Chr. 4:32).
Togarmah - (1.) A son of Gomer, and grandson of Japheth (Gen. 10:3).
(2.) A nation which traded in horses and mules at the fairs of Tyre (Ezek. 27:14; 38:6); probably an Armenian or a Scythian race; descendants of (1).
Tohu - one of Samuel's ancestors (1 Sam. 1:1).
Toi - a king of Hamath, who sent "Joram his son unto King David to salute him," when he "heard that David had smitten all the host of Hadadezer" (2 Sam. 8:9, 10). Called Tou (1 Chr. 18:9, 10).
Tola - a scarlet worm. (1.) Eldest son of Issachar (Gen. 46:13).
(2.) A judge of the tribe of Issachar who "judged" Israel twenty-three years (Judg. 10:1, 2), when he died, and was buried in Shamir. He was succeeded by Jair.
Tolad - productive, a town of Simeon, in the south of Judah (1 Chr. 4:29).
Tolaites - descendants of Tola (Num. 26:23; 1 Chr. 7:1, 2).
Toll - one of the branches of the king of Persia's revenues (Ezra 4:13; 7:24), probably a tax levied from those who used the bridges and fords and highways.
Tombs - of the Hebrews were generally excavated in the solid rock, or were natural caves. Mention is made of such tombs in Judg. 8:32; 2 Sam. 2:32; 2 Kings 9:28; 23:30. They were sometimes made in gardens (2 Kings 21:26; 23:16; Matt. 27:60). They are found in great numbers in and around Jerusalem and all over the land. They were sometimes whitewashed (Matt. 23:27, 29). The body of Jesus was laid in Joseph's new rock-hewn tomb, in a garden near to Calvary. All evidence is in favour of the opinion that this tomb was somewhere near the Damascus gate, and outside the city, and cannot be identified with the so-called "holy sepulchre." The mouth of such rocky tombs was usually closed by a large stone (Heb. golal), which could only be removed by the united efforts of several men (Matt. 28:2; comp. John 11:39). (See GOLGOTHA.)
Tongues, Confusion of - at Babel, the cause of the early separation of mankind and their division into nations. The descendants of Noah built a tower to prevent their dispersion; but God "confounded their language" (Gen. 11:1-8), and they were scattered over the whole earth. Till this time "the whole earth was of one language and of one speech." (See SHINAR.)
Tongues, Gift of - granted on the day of Pentecost (Acts 2:4), in fulfilment of a promise Christ had made to his disciples (Mark 16:17). What this gift actually was has been a subject of much discussion. Some have argued that it was merely an outward sign of the presence of the Holy Spirit among the disciples, typifying his manifold gifts, and showing that salvation was to be extended to all nations. But the words of Luke (Acts 2:9) clearly show that the various peoples in Jerusalem at the time of Pentecost did really hear themselves addressed in their own special language with which they were naturally acquainted (comp. Joel 2:28, 29).
Among the gifts of the Spirit the apostle enumerates in 1 Cor. 12:10-14:30, "divers kinds of tongues" and the "interpretation of tongues." This "gift" was a different manifestation of the Spirit from that on Pentecost, although it resembled it in many particulars. Tongues were to be "a sign to them that believe not."