An adder is a kind of snake that is known for its venomous and painful bite. While all snakes are identified with Satan’s temptation of Eve, the idea of an encounter with a snake that hurts you is this

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See also Abomination of Desolation.

Abomination. This concept has to do with something that is utterly unworthy of any treatment, relationship, or consideration. Refers to sins in general Isa 66:3; Jer 44:4.

Abomination. This word is used: (1.) To express the idea that the Egyptians considered themselves as defiled when they ate with strangers (Gen 43:32). The Jews subsequently followed the same practice, holding it unlawful to eat or drink with foreigners (John 18:28; Acts 10:28; 11:3).

(2.) Every shepherd was “an abomination” unto the Egyptians (Gen 46:34). This aversion to shepherds, such as the Hebrews, arose probably from the fact that Lower and Middle Egypt had formerly been held in oppressive subjection by a tribe of nomad shepherds (the Hyksos), who had only recently been expelled, and partly also perhaps from this other fact that the Egyptians detested the lawless habits of these wandering shepherds.

(3.) Pharaoh was so moved by the fourth plague, that while he refused the demand of Moses, he offered a compromise, granting to the Israelites permission to hold their festival and offer their sacrifices in Egypt. This permission could not be accepted, because Moses said they would have to sacrifice “the abomination of the Egyptians” (Exo 8:26); i.e., the cow or ox, which all the Egyptians held as sacred, and which they regarded it as sacrilegious to kill.

(4.) Daniel (Dan 11:31), in that section of his prophecies which is generally interpreted as referring to the fearful calamities that were to fall on the Jews in the time of Antiochus Epiphanes, says, “And they shall place the abomination that maketh desolate.” Antiochus Epiphanes caused an altar to be erected on the altar of burnt-offering, on which sacrifices were offered to Jupiter Olympus. (Compare 1 Macc. 1:57). This was the abomination of the desolation of Jerusalem. The same language is employed in Dan 9:27 (compare Mat 24:15), where the reference is probably to the image-crowned standards which the Romans set up at the east gate of the temple (A.D. 70), and to which they paid idolatrous honors. “Almost the entire religion of the Roman camp consisted in worshipping the ensign, swearing by the ensign, and in preferring the ensign before all other gods.” These ensigns were an “abomination” to the Jews, the “abomination of desolation.”
This word is also used symbolically of sin in general (Isa 66:3); an idol (Isa 44:19); the ceremonies of the apostate Church of Rome (Rev 17:4); a detestable act (Eze 22:11).


Abomination. a-bom-i-nā´shun (פּגּוּלpiggūl, תּועבה, tō‛ēbhāh, שׁקץ, sheḳec (שׁקּוּץ, shiḳḳūc)): three distinct Hebrew words are rendered in the English Bible by “abomination,” or “abominable thing,” referring (except in Gen 43:32; Gen 46:34) to things or practices abhorrent to Yahweh, and opposed to the ritual or moral requirements of His religion. It would be well if these words could be distinguished in translation, as they denote different degrees of abhorrence or loathsomeness.

The word most used for this idea by the Hebrews and indicating the highest degree of abomination is תּועבה, tō‛ēbhāh, meaning primarily that which offends the religious sense of a people. When it is said, for example, “The Egyptians might not eat bread with the Hebrews; for that is an abomination unto the Egyptians,” this is the word used; the significance being that the Hebrews were repugnant to the Egyptians as foreigners, as of an inferior caste, and especially as shepherds (Gen 46:34).

The feeling of the Egyptians for the Greeks was likewise one of repugnance. Herodotus (ii.41) says the Egyptians would not kiss a Greek on the mouth, or use his dish, or taste meat cut with the knife of a Greek.

Among the objects described in the Old Testament as “abominations” in this sense are heathen gods, such as Ashtoreth (Astarte), Chemosh, Milcom, the “abominations” of the Zidonians (Phoenicians), Moabites, and Ammonites, respectively (2Ki 23:13), and everything connected with the worship of such gods. When Pharaoh, remonstrating against the departure of the children of Israel, exhorted them to offer sacrifices to their God in Egypt, Moses said: “Shall we sacrifice the abomination of the Egyptians (i.e. the animals worshipped by them which were taboo, tō‛ēbhāh, to the Israelites) before their eyes, and will they not stone us?” (Exo 8:26).

It is to be noted that, not only the heathen idol itself, but anything offered to or associated with the idol, all the paraphernalia of the forbidden cult, was called an “abomination,” for it “is an abomination to Yahweh thy God” (Deut 7:25-26). The Deuteronomic writer here adds, in terms quite significant of the point of view and the spirit of the whole law: ‘Neither shalt thou bring an abomination into thy house and thus become a thing set apart (ḥērem = tabooed) like unto it; thou shalt utterly detest it and utterly abhor it, for it is a thing set apart’ (tabooed). Tō‛ēbhāh is even used as synonymous with “idol” or heathen deity, as in Isa 44:19Deut 32:16; 2Ki 23:13; and especially Exo 8:22.

Everything akin to magic or divination is likewise an abomination tō‛ēbhāh; as are sexual transgressions ( Deut 22:5Deut 23:18Deut 24:4), especially incest and other unnatural offenses: “For all these abominations have the men of the land done, that were before you” (Lev 18:27; compare Eze 8:15). It is to be noted, however, that the word takes on in the later usage a higher ethical and spiritual meaning: as where “divers measures, a great and a small,” are forbidden ( Deut 25:14-16); and in Proverbs where “lying lips” (Prov 12:22), “the proud in heart” (Prov 16:5), “the way of the wicked” (Prov 15:9), “evil devices” (Prov 15:26), and “he that justifieth the wicked, and he that condemneth the righteous” (Prov 17:15), are said to be an abomination in God’s sight. At last prophet and sage are found to unite in declaring that any sacrifice, however free from physical blemish, if offered without purity of motive, is an abomination: ‘Bring no more an oblation of falsehood – an incense of abomination it is to me’ (Isa 1:13; compare Jer 7:10). “The sacrifice of the wicked” and the prayer of him “that turneth away his ear from hearing the law,” are equally an abomination (see Prov 15:8; Prov 21:27; Prov 28:9).

Another word rendered “abomination” in the King James Version is שׁקץ, sheḳec or שׁקּוּץ, shiḳḳuč. It expresses generally a somewhat less degree of horror or religious aversion than tō‛ēbhāh, but sometimes seems to stand about on a level with it in meaning. In  Deut 14:3, for example, we have the command, “Thou shalt not eat any abominable thing,” as introductory to the laws prohibiting the use of the unclean animals (see CLEAN AND UNCLEAN ANIMALS), and the word there used is tō‛ēbhāȟ. But in Lev 11:10-13, Lev 11:20, Lev 11:23, Lev 11:41, Lev 11:42; Isa 66:17; and in Eze 8:10 sheḳec is the word used and likewise applied to the prohibited animals; as also inLev 11:43 sheḳec is used when it is commanded, “Ye shall not make yourselves abominable.” Then sheḳec is often used parallel to or together with tō‛ēbhāh of that which should be held as detestable, as for instance, of idols and idolatrous practices (see especially  Deut 29:17; Hos 9:10; Jer 4:1; Jer 13:27; Jer 16:18;Eze 11:18-21; Eze 20:7, Eze 20:8). It is used exactly as tō‛ēbhāh is used as applied to Milcom, the god of the Ammonites, which is spoken of as the detestable thing sheḳec of the Ammonites (1Ki 11:5). Still even in such cases to’ebhah seems to be the stronger word and to express that which is in the highest degree abhorrent.

The other word used to express a somewhat kindred idea of abhorrence and translated “abomination” in the King James Version is פגול, piggūl; but it is used in the Hebrew Bible only of sacrificial flesh that has become stale, putrid, tainted (see Lev 7:18; Lev 19:7; Eze 4:14; Isa 65:4). Driver maintains that it occurs only as a “technical term for such state sacrificial flesh as has not been eaten within the prescribed time,” and, accordingly, he would everywhere render it specifically “refuse meat.” Compare leḥem meghō’āl, “the loathsome bread” (from gā’al, “to loathe”) Mal 1:7. A chief interest in the subject for Christians grows out of the use of the term in the expression “abomination of desolation” (Mat 24:15 and Mark 13:14), which see. See also ABHOR.

Literature. Commentators at the place Rabbinical literature in point. Driver; Weiss; Gratz, Gesch. der Juden, IV, note 15.


Abomination. The word ‘abomination’ is used in the O.T. in reference to any iniquity as viewed by a holy God. It also designates what was unfit to be presented in the service of God, such as an animal with any sort of blemish being brought as a sacrifice; the price of a dog being put into the treasury, etc. Deut. 17: 1; Deut. 23: 18. The divine service became itself an abomination to God when it had fallen into a mere outward observance or was in association with iniquity. Isa. 1: 13; Prov. 28: 9. But idolatry was the special thing that was declared to be abomination to Jehovah. The idols themselves are thus designated: 2 Kings 23: 13; Isa. 44: 19; and Ezek. 8. shows the idolatry that was carried on in secret, and the ‘greater abomination,’ of bringing it actually into the inner court of the Lord’s house, between the porch and the altar! The word is but seldom used in the N.T. and applies then to wickedness in general.


Abomination. This word is used

(1.) To express the idea that the Egyptians considered themselves as defiled when they ate with strangers (Gen 43:32). The Jews subsequently followed the same practice, holding it unlawful to eat or drink with foreigners (John 18:28; Acts 10:28; 11:3).

(2.) Every shepherd was “an abomination” unto the Egyptians (Gen 46:34). This aversion to shepherds, such as the Hebrews, arose probably from the fact that Lower and Middle Egypt had formerly been held in oppressive subjection by a tribe of nomad shepherds (the Hyksos), who had only recently been expelled, and partly also perhaps from this other fact that the Egyptians detested the lawless habits of these wandering shepherds.

(3.) Pharaoh was so moved by the fourth plague, that while he refused the demand of Moses, he offered a compromise, granting to the Israelites permission to hold their festival and offer their sacrifices in Egypt. This permission could not be accepted, because Moses said they would have to sacrifice “the abomination of the Egyptians” (Exo 8:26); i.e., the cow or ox, which all the Egyptians held as sacred, and which they regarded it as sacrilegious to kill.

(4.) Daniel (Dan 11:31), in that section of his prophecies which is generally interpreted as referring to the fearful calamities that were to fall on the Jews in the time of Antiochus Epiphanes, says, “And they shall place the abomination that maketh desolate.” Antiochus Epiphanes caused an altar to be erected on the altar of burnt-offering, on which sacrifices were offered to Jupiter Olympus. (Compare 1 Macc. 1:57). This was the abomination of the desolation of Jerusalem. The same language is employed in Dan 9:27 (compare Mat 24:15), where the reference is probably to the image-crowned standards which the Romans set up at the east gate of the temple (A.D. 70), and to which they paid idolatrous honors. “Almost the entire religion of the Roman camp consisted in worshipping the ensign, swearing by the ensign, and in preferring the ensign before all other gods.” These ensigns were an “abomination” to the Jews, the “abomination of desolation.”
This word is also used symbolically of sin in general (Isa 66:3); an idol (Isa 44:19); the ceremonies of the apostate Church of Rome (Rev 17:4); a detestable act (Eze 22:11).


David Cox’s Topical Bible Concordance

Things that are abominable to God
• Idolatry Deu. 7:25; 27:15; 32:16.
• Unjust weights and measures Deu. 25:13-16; Pro. 11:1; 20:1,23.
• Uncleanness Lev. 18:22; 20:13; Deu. 24:4.
• Incest Lev. 18:6-18.
• Lying with a woman in her menses Lev. 18:18,20.
• Adultery Lev. 18:20.
• Sodomy Lev. 18:22-23.
• Offering seed to Molech Lev. 18:21.
• Offering children in sacrifice Deu. 18:10.
• Sorcery and necromancy Deu. 18:10-11.
• The hire of a whore and price of a dog, as a consecrated gift Deu. 23:18.
UNCLASSIFIED SCRIPTURES RELATING TO Deu. 22:5; Pro. 3:32; 6:16-19; 8:7; 11:20; 12:22; 15:8-9,26; 16:5; 17:15; 20:10,23; 21:27; 24:9; 28:9; 29:27.

David Cox’s Topical Bible Concordance

Things that are, to God:
• Idolatry Deu. 7:25; 27:15; 32:16.
• Unjust weights and measures Deu. 25:13-16; Pro. 11:1; 20:10, 23.
• Uncleanness Lev. 18:22; 20:13; Deu. 24:4.
• Incest Lev. 18:6-18.
• Lying with a woman in her menses Lev. 18:19.
• Adultery Lev. 18:20.
• Sodomy Lev. 18:22-23.
• Offering seed to Molech Lev. 18:21.
• Offering children in sacrifice Deu. 18:10.
• Sorcery and Necromancy Deu. 18:10-11.
• The hire of a whore and price of a dog, as a consecrated gift Deu. 23:18.
Unclassified scriptures relating to Deu. 22:5; Pro. 3:32; 6:16-19; 8:7; 11:20; 12:22; 15:8-9, 26; 16:5; Pro. 17:15; 20:10, 23; 21:27; 24:9; 28:9; 29:27.



The old adage, “at one with God” is very true to this concept. The idea begins with an acknowledgement that we are at odds with God because we have offended God, sinning against God. This antagonism between God and us is caused by our sin, and cannot be lifted or remedied by us. God offers a solution in the death of Jesus Christ on the Cross of Calvary as the remedy that God accepts. But God conditions this remedy from becoming effective ONLY IF we believe in Jesus as our Savior. Faith is the key around which atonement works. Faith has a basis, and it is not in a power within us, but in the confidence of God, that He has solved the situation through Jesus.

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This concept goes hand in hand with the concept of blessing, or being blessed. To be blessed is to be in the favor of God such that God is actively giving you good things, protecting you, and helping you. To be accursed is the opposite. The person who involves themself with something that is “accursed” is to take, like, want, or otherwise involves themselves with something that utterly has God’s disapproval.

God identifies certain things as being “accursed”. These accursed things (and those people associated with it) are things under the condemnation of God, and will shortly fall under the actual punishment of God. The concept of accursed is someone or something that is cast off from God. They (for some reason, by their decision to reject God, or because God has seen their sins and decides to reject them) are separated from God and all the goodness that is associated with God.

Rahab was taken out of the accursed city, but the city and all that were in it fell under the condemnation and punishment of God Joshua 6:17.

Josh 6:18 And ye, in any wise keep yourselves from the accursed thing, lest ye make yourselves accursed, when ye take of the accursed thing, and make the camp of Israel a curse, and trouble it.

God made everything in this city “accursed”, i.e. the Israelites were not to take or rescue anything from it, not animal, not possessions, not even money, gold or silver. Think atom bomb here. Everybody and everything is destroyed and nothing is to be left for Israel’s possession.

In Joshua 7 Achan took gold from the accursed city, and this caused the wrath of God. The entire story of Achan speaks to us of an utter and explosive declaration that things are not in themselves always good. Things associated with evil, especially things gotten through evil or wicked means, retain an association with that wickedness, and therefore, even though they in themselves can be good (food, money, clothing, etc), God has declared them off limits for us. From a purely carnal view, a gold coin is a gold coin, and we should not refuse to grab it if we can (without law enforcement grabbing us for stealing). But the story of Achan teaches us that this thinking just doesn’t check with God.

Possessions gain a kind of moral association with them, and therefore we have to be careful not to grab what is morally wrong, or what is good but gotten through morally wrong means.

Isa 65:20 There shall be no more thence an infant of days, nor an old man that hath not filled his days: for the child shall die an hundred years old; but the sinner being an hundred years old shall be accursed.

“Blessing” (a good thing) is not blessing (is not good for us) if it incures the wrath of God in the process.

Things declared accursed


The idea of being declared accursed is to have no remedy to the ills of life. In other words, the only true source of blessing and rescue from the issues of life is God. To be accursed is to have God say, “I am not at home, go away, and don’t come back”. When you enter that situation, their is utterly no hope. The problem is, is when a person that is not accursed does something to get involved with something or someone accursed, and thereby also becoming accursed by association. On the one hand, it can happen, and on the other, normal people utterly refuse and reject anything related with it because nothing good can come from it.

Illustration. Consider a large city with a nuclear power plant. Something happens and the power plant powders the entire city with radioactive dust. Everybody left things as they were, not taking anything with them. You go into the city knowing this. You pick up clothes, eat their food, and drive one of their cars, and go to jewelry shop and put on a lot of gold jewelry. What good does it do you? The more you involve yourself with anything there, the more radioactive you become. You take money from a bank and then go out of the city and start buying things, and shortly the police track you down, and put you in jail for passing off radioactive money. The people that received it also are wanting you lynched. Nothing good comes of anything related to the accursed city.

Jesus became “accursed” for us, by hanging on the cross, in order to save our souls.

Deut 21:23 His body shall not remain all night upon the tree, but thou shalt in any wise bury him that day; (for he that is hanged is accursed of God;) that thy land be not defiled, which the LORD thy God giveth thee for an inheritance.


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Adam 4


The first man. The name is supposed to be derived from Adamah, ‘earth, or red earth,’ agreeing with the fact that “the Lord God formed man of the dust of the ground, Gen. 2:7. He differed from all other creatures, because God breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, by which man became a living soul. He differed also in being made after the image and likeness of God:he was God’s representative on earth, and to him was given dominion over all other living things, and he gave them names. He was placed in the garden of Eden to dress it and to keep it, showing that occupation was a good thing for man even in innocence. God said also that it was not good for man to be alone, so He caused him to sleep, took from him a rib, and of this ‘builded’ a woman. Adam called her Isha for she was taken out of Ish, man:the two being a type of Christ and the church, in the closest union:cf. Eph. 5:31, 32. Continue reading

Moses Part 2

Moses. [Mo’ses]

Son of Amram and Jochebed, of the tribe of Levi, brother of Aaron and Miriam. He was born after the mandate by the king that all male children of the Hebrews were to be killed, but his parents by faith hid him three months, and when he could no longer be hidden he was put in an ark of bulrushes and placed among the reeds in the river. Being found there by Pharaoh’s daughter he was named by her MOSES, signifying ‘drawn out,’ and adopted as her son, being nursed for her by his own mother. He became learned in all the wisdom of Egypt, and was mighty in words and deeds. Continue reading



Assurance refers usually to the assurance of the believer (or unbelievers in offers of salvation) in God and his promises. Salvation is the greatest issue over which assurance is fought, that being, that once a person is saved, can they lose their salvation, or do they have the assurance that once saved always saved.

If we address this biblically, neither of the positions are biblical. The Bible does not support the idea that once saved you can lose your salvation. This is an unbiblical extreme. The other extreme is also unbiblical. This is the idea that once we “are saved” (usually repeating a prayer and/or being baptized) you can live as you please. The Calvinist idea of perseverance is basically in practice the idea that no matter how sinful you are, because you are elect, you will still go to heaven. This also is not biblical.

Biblical assurance speaks more to the confidence in God that (1) the believer CAN CONFIDE in the promises of his Savior, and (2) God’s surety and faithfulness in fulfilling what he has promised to do. In the end analysis, we do not yet actually “have” salvation (although it is right to say that), but we have the hope that God will save us in the day of eternal judgment of all humans.



[N] [T] [E]
In the midst of a world filled with uneasiness and insecurity, assurance of a person’s security in God is one of the hallmarks of the authentic Christian life. Such assurance is not based on human resources, abilities, or ingenuity, but on confidence in the caring power of God for believers.
Such divine concern in the life of an individual or a community of faith is not to be likened to some superficial good luck charm or magical incantation that protects a person against the traumas and tragedies of human existence. Instead, assurance in God provides an anchor of confidence and hope (Heb 6:18) in the midst of pain and sorrow, because the believer has learned the secret of casting all worries and cares on God, who is genuinely concerned for people (1 Peter 5:7).
Assurance can be linked to faith and faithfulness (Heb 10:22), because it is one of the ways that the biblical writers describe an authentic relationship with God. While reliance on God is accompanied by the confidence that God is intimately involved in the lives of believers (1 John 5:14), faith in God does not earn a sense of security or assurance. Moreover, it cannot be achieved by attendance at church, by works of kindness, or by ecclesiastical pardon. The foundation for the assurance of one’s salvation or well-being with God is rooted in a divine gift. God is the provider of salvation in Jesus Christ (John 3:16; 2 Col 5:18-19). Moreover, it is God who will bring to completion this divine gift (Php 1:6). It is this assurance that God continues to work in the lives of believers that is the basis for the Christian doctrine of perseverance—endurance or continuing response to God’s leading (Eph 6:18; Heb 12:1; James 1:25). Assurance and perseverance are two sides of the same message.
Assurance of a relationship with God in Christ is the way believers express the mysterious connection between the infinite nature of God and the fallible nature of humanity. Life with God (whether in ancient Israel or in Christianity) is a dynamic reality, not some chess game in which God moves all the pawns and kings without reference to human response (note the amazing conditional statement in Jer 18:7-10). Resisting temptation (with divine help cf. Matt 6:13; 1 John 5:14) is a key to sense of security in God (cf. 1 Col 10:13; James 4:7). Evil and the devil are not some toys with which believers can play (1 Peter 5:8-9).
But believers are not left to their own resources. The presence of the Holy Spirit in the lives of believers is a guarantee or assurance that God is at work in believers’ lives (2 Col 1:22; 5:5). It is through the Spirit that believers know the reality of God’s presence in their lives (1 John 4:13). Forces external to them will never be able to separate them from the love of God in Christ Jesus (Rom 8:35-39); no power (symbolized by robber or wolf) is able to steal believers (symbolized by sheep) out of the loving arms of God’s Son (John 10:28).
This sense of assurance for believers is not merely limited to the present era on earth, but the resurrection of Jesus assures Christians that they are not deluded in their expectation of a future hope with their Lord (1 Co 15:17-20). The resurrection of Jesus is the powerful guarantee that Christian preaching and faith are not in vain (v. 14). The Holy Spirit’s presence provides assurance that Christians will receive their promised inheritance with God (Eph 1:14).
Gerald L. Borchert
See also Confidence; Endurance
Bibliography. G. L. Borchert, Assurance and Warning; D. A. Carson, Divine Sovereignty and Human Responsibility; I. H. Marshall, Kept by the Power.
[N] indicates this entry was also found in Nave’s Topical Bible
[T] indicates this entry was also found in Torrey’s Topical Textbook
[E] indicates this entry was also found in Easton’s Bible Dictionary



“faith,” has the secondary meaning of “an assurance or guarantee,” e.g., Act 17:31; by raising Christ from the dead, God has given “assurance” that the world will be judged by Him (the AV margin, “offered faith” does not express the meaning). Cp. 1Ti 5:12, where “faith” means “pledge.” See BELIEF, FAITH, FIDELITY.

“a fullness, abundance,” also means “full assurance, entire confidence;” lit., a “full-carrying” (pleros, “full,” phero, “to carry”). Some explain it as full fruitfulness (cp. RV, “fullness” in Heb 6:11). In 1Th 1:5 it describes the willingness and freedom of spirit enjoyed by those who brought the Gospel to Thessalonica; in Col 2:2, the freedom of mind and confidence resulting from an understanding in Christ; in Heb 6:11 (AV, “full assurance,” RV, “fullness”), the engrossing effect of the expectation of the fulfillment of God’s promises; in Heb 10:22, the character of the faith by which we are to draw near to God. See FULLNESS.

lit., “a standing under, support” (hupo, “under,” histemi, “to stand”), hence, an “assurance,” is so rendered in Heb 11:1, RV, for AV, “substance.” It here may signify a title-deed, as giving a guarantee, or reality. See CONFIDENCE, PERSON, SUBSTANCE.

Note: In Act 16:10, for the AV (of sumbibazomai), “assuredly gathering,” see CONCLUDE.

“to trust or give assurance to” (cp. A, No. 1), has a secondary meaning, in the Passive Voice, “to be assured of,” 2Ti 3:14.

akin to A, No. 2, “to bring in full measure, to fulfill,” also signifies “to be fully assured,” Rom 4:21, RV, of Abraham’s faith. In Rom 14:5 it is said of the apprehension of the will of God. So in Col 4:12 in the best mss. In these three places it is used subjectively, with reference to an effect upon the mind. For its other and objective use, referring to things external, see FULFILL; see also BELIEVE, KNOW, PERSUADE, PROOF. In the Sept., Ecc 8:11.

“to persuade,” is rendered “assure” in 1Jo 3:19 (marg., “persuade”), where the meaning is that of confidence toward God consequent upon loving in deed and in truth. See BELIEVE, CONFIDENCE, FRIEND, OBEY, PERSUADE, TRUST, YIELD.

means (a) “safely,” Mar 14:44; Act 16:23; (b) “assuredly,” Act 2:36; the knowledge there enjoined involves freedom from fear of contradiction, with an intimation of the impossibility of escape from the effects. See SAFELY.

God wants believers to be assured of their salvation. He wants them to know without doubt that, having repented and trusted in Jesus, they have eternal life and will never perish (Joh 3:16; 6:47; 10:28; Heb 6:11,17-20; 7:25; 1Pe 1:23; 1Jo 5:12-13). God promises believers eternal security, and his promises are certain. God is faithful, and his promises can be trusted (Joh 6:37; Rom 10:13; 1Th 5:24; 2Ti 2:19; Heb 10:22-23; 1Pe 1:5).
What God has done
Believers have this assurance because their salvation depends not on anything they have done, but on what God has done for them in Christ. Through Christ’s death, God has forgiven their sins and brought them into a new relationship with himself. God now accepts them as being ‘in Christ’ (Rom 3:24-25; 5:1; 8:1,33-34; Eph 1:7; Heb 10:14,17-18,22; Jude 24; see FORGIVENESS; JUSTIFICATION).
Further assurance comes from the fact of God’s election. In his sovereign will and grace, God has elected, or chosen, believers to be his children, to have eternal life, to escape the wrath of God, and to share with Christ in the full blessings of the age to come (Joh 1:12-13; 6:37-39; Rom 8:29-30; Eph 1:4; 1Th 1:4; 5:9; 2Ti 1:9; see ELECTION). Nothing can separate them from the love of God (Rom 8:35-39; Eph 2:4-5), and they receive from God the gift of the Holy Spirit as the guarantee of their eternal salvation. The Holy Spirit is God’s mark of ownership upon them (2Co 1:22; Eph 1:13; 4:30; 1Jo 4:13).
The response of believers
These great facts are all concerned with what God has done, and they are the basis of true assurance. In addition, however, believers are aware within themselves that they are children of God (Rom 8:16).
This added assurance within believers comes from a variety of experiences relating to their new life. Such experiences include their desire to obey God (1Jo 2:3-6), their sensitivity to sin (2Ti 2:19; 1Jo 3:4-10,19-21), their awareness of God’s discipline in their lives (Heb 12:5-8), their love for others (1Jo 3:14-15), their desire to know more of God and his Word (1Pe 2:2-3), and their constant perseverance in the faith (Mar 4:18-20; 1Pe 1:6-9; Heb 6:11-12). Without these evidences of a changed life, those who claim to have assurance of salvation are deceiving themselves (Tit 1:16; 1Jo 2:4,9-11; 3:10; cf. Mat 7:22-23, 25:41-46). (See also BACKSLIDING; PERSEVERANCE.)

The resurrection of Jesus (Acts 17:31) is the “assurance” (Gr. pistis, generally rendered “faith”) or pledge God has given that his revelation is true and worthy of acceptance. The “full assurance [Gr. plerophoria, ‘full bearing’] of faith” (Heb. 10:22) is a fulness of faith in God which leaves no room for doubt. The “full assurance of understanding” (Col. 2:2) is an entire unwavering conviction of the truth of the declarations of Scripture, a joyful steadfastness on the part of any one of conviction that he has grasped the very truth. The “full assurance of hope” (Heb. 6:11) is a sure and well-grounded expectation of eternal glory (2 Tim. 4:7, 8). This assurance of hope is the assurance of a man’s own particular salvation.

This infallible assurance, which believers may attain unto as to their own personal salvation, is founded on the truth of the promises (Heb. 6:18), on the inward evidence of Christian graces, and on the testimony of the Spirit of adoption (Rom. 8:16). That such a certainty may be attained appears from the testimony of Scripture (Rom. 8:16; 1 John 2:3; 3:14), from the command to See k after it (Heb. 6:11; 2 Pet. 1:10), and from the fact that it has been attained (2 Tim. 1:12; 4:7, 8; 1 John 2:3; 4:16).

This full assurance is not of the essence of saving faith. It is the result of faith, and posterior to it in the order of nature, and so frequently also in the order of time. True believers may be destitute of it. Trust itself is something different from the evidence that we do trust. Believers, moreover, are exhorted to go on to something beyond what they at present have when they are exhorted to See k the grace of full assurance (Heb. 10:22; 2 Pet. 1:5-10). The attainment of this grace is a duty, and is to be diligently sought.

“Genuine assurance naturally leads to a legitimate and abiding peace and joy, and to love and thankfulness to God; and these from the very laws of our being to greater buoyancy, strength, and cheerfulness in the practice of obedience in every department of duty.”

This assurance may in various ways be shaken, diminished, and intermitted, but the principle out of which it springs can never be lost. (See FAITH)



A term exceptionally rich in spiritual meaning. It signifies the joyous, unwavering confidence of an intelligent faith; the security of a fearless trust. The original words have to do with the heart of vital religion. baTach, “trust”; ‘aman, “to prop,” “to support,” hence to confide in, to trust. Jesus repeatedly used this word “amen” to express the trustworthiness and abiding certainty of his sayings. pistis, “faith”; plerophoria, “full assurance.” The confidence of faith is based, not on “works of righteousness which we have done” (compare Titus 3:4; Titus 3:5 the King James Version) but on the highpriesthood and atoning sacrifice of Christ.

(Heb 10:21; Heb 10:22; compare He 10:19, “boldness to enter …. by the blood of Jesus,” the King James Version). Assurance is the soul’s apprehension of its complete emancipation from the power of evil and from consequent judgment, through the atoning grace of Christ. It is the exact opposite of self-confidence, being a joyous appropriation and experience of the fullness of Christ–a glad sense of security, freedom and eternal life in Him. This doctrine is of immeasurable importance to the life of the church and of the individual believer, as a life of spiritual doubt and uncertainty contradicts the ideal of liberty in Christ Jesus which is the natural and necessary fruitage of “the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Spirit …. shed on us abundantly, through Jesus Christ our Saviour.” Paul unhesitatingly said, “I know” (2Ti 1:12)–a word which, oft-repeated in 1 Jn, furnishes the groundwork of glad assurance that runs through the entire epistle. For the classic passage on “full assurance” see Col 2:1-10.

Dwight M. Pratt



This word has in the O.T. a different application from that which it has in the N.T. In the former it is ‘confidence or trust,’ and agrees with the hopes of God’s earthly people in connection with the security in which Israel will dwell when restored to their land, when all their enemies shall have been put down by divine power: the effect of righteousness will be “quietness and assurance for ever,” Isa. 32:17: whereas in their disobedience they should fear day and night and have no assurance of their life. Deut. 28:66.

In the N.T. the Greek word plhroforia implies ‘full assurance’ and refers to eternal salvation. The gospel reaches a soul in power, and in the Holy Ghost and in ‘much full assurance.’ 1 Thess. 1:5. We also meet with:

1, the full assurance of faith, Heb. 10:22; the reception of God’s testimony respecting the work of Christ and the glory He now enjoys:

2, the full assurance of hope, Heb. 6:11, issuing in continued diligence of the saints in their work and labour of love: and

3, the full assurance of understanding, Col. 2:2, for full knowledge in the mystery of God.


• Produced by faith
Eph 3:12; 2Tim 1:12; Heb 10:22

• Made full by hope
Heb 6:11; Heb 6:19

• Confirmed by love
1John 3:14; 1John 3:19; 1John 4:18

• Is the effect of righteousness
Isa 32:17

• Is abundant in the understanding of the gospel
Col 2:2; 1Thess 1:5

• Saints privileged to have, assurance of:

– Their election
Ps 4:3; 1Thess 1:4

– Their redemption
Job 19:25

– Their adoption
Rom 8:16; 1John 3:2

– Their salvation
Isa 12:2

– Their eternal life
1John 5:13

– The unalienable love of God
Rom 8:38-39

– Union with God and Christ
1Cor 6:15; 2Cor 13:5; Eph 5:30; 1John 2:5; 1John 4:13

– Peace with God by Christ
Rom 5:1

– Preservation
Ps 3:6; Ps 8:1-9; Ps 27:3-5; Ps 46:1-3

– Answers to prayer
1John 3:22; 1John 5:14-15

– Comfort in affliction
Ps 73:26; Luke 4:18; 2Cor 4:8-10; 2Cor 4:16-18

– Continuance in grace
Phil 1:6

– A support in death
Ps 23:4

– A glorious resurrection
Job 19:26; Ps 17:15; Phil 3:21; 1John 3:2

– A kingdom
Heb 12:28; Rev 5:10

– A crown
2Tim 4:7-8; Jas 1:12

– Saints give diligence to attain
2Pet 1:10-11

– Strive to maintain
Heb 3:14; Heb 3:18

– Confident hope in God restores
Ps 42:11

• Exemplified by:

– David
Ps 23:4; Ps 73:24-26

– Paul
2Tim 1:12; 2Tim 4:18 Faith


David Cox’s Topical Bible Concordance

Produced by faith Eph 3:12; 2Ti 1:12; Heb 10:22
Made full by hope Heb 6:11,19
Confirmed by love 1Jo 3:14,19; 4:18
Is the effect of righteousness Isa 32:17
Is abundant in the understanding of the gospel Col 2:2; 1Th 1:5
Saints privileged to have, of
Their election. Ps 4:3; 1Th 1:4
Their redemption. Job 19:25
Their adoption. Ro 8:16; 1Jo 3:2
Their salvation. Isa 12:2
Eternal life. 1Jo 5:13
The unalienable love of God. Ro 8:38,39
Union with God and Christ. 1Co 6:15; 2Co 13:5; Eph 5:30; 1Jo 2:5; 4:13
Peace with God by Christ. Ro 5:1
Preservation. Ps 3:6,8; 27:3-5; 46:1-3
Answers to prayer. 1Jo 3:22; 5:14,15
Continuance in grace. Php 1:6
Comfort in affliction. Ps 73:26; Lu 4:18,19; 2Co 4:8-10,16-18
Support in death. Ps 23:4
A glorious resurrection. Job 19:26; Ps 17:15; Php 3:21; 1Jo 3:2
A kingdom. Heb 12:28; Re 5:10
A crown. 2Ti 4:7,8; Jas 1:12
Give diligence to attain to 2Pe 1:10,11
Strive to maintain Heb 3:14,18
Confident hope in God restores Ps 42:11
David. Ps 23:4; 73:24-26
Paul. 2Ti 1:12; 4:18



See also Angel

An angel is simply a spiritual being that serves God. Within this order of beings, there appears to be a separation of some from the others into positions of authority one over overs. These “archangels” are leaders over the angels, and/or possibly also authorities over positions and ministries, like an archangel over each nation as in Daniel.

In my book on angels, I make the point that “angel” is a difficult concept to understand. There is the possibility that “angel” is a general broad concept that gathers up in that all of the spiritual beings at the service of God. Demons were angels, but nowhere are demons or “fallen angels” ever referred to as “angel”. They lost they name in losing their relationship with their Creator. So possibly all good spiritual being are called angels. The other possibility is that there are a hole host of spiritual being that serve God Cheribum, Seraphim, Angels, etc. and angels are only one single “part” or member of this host. This makes more sense because technically, an angel is a messenger, and those spiritual beings that are not used as messengers, and stand around the throne of God shouting “Holy, Holy, Holy” are not technically an angel.

This world is only twice used in the Bible, 1Th 4:16; Jude 1:9. In this last passage it is applied to Michael, who, in Da 10:13, 21; 12:1, is described as having a special charge of the Jewish nation, and in Rev 12:7-9 as the leader of an angelic army. So exalted are the position and offices ascribed to Michael, that many think the Messiah is meant.



Michael the Archangel

In Daniel he is called ‘one of the chief princes,’ ‘your prince,’ ‘the great prince which standeth for the children of thy people.’ He went to the assistance of one (probably an angel) who had been sent with a message to Daniel, but who had been detained twenty-one days by the prince of the kingdom of Persia (doubtless Satan, or one of Satan’s angels, who was acting for the kingdom of Persia, as Michael was prince for the children of Israel). Da 10:13,21 12:1. It is also said of Michael that when he contended with Satan about the body of Moses, he durst not bring a railing accusation against him, but said, “The Lord rebuke thee.” Michael and his angels will however fight with Satan and his angels, and will prevail, and Satan will be cast out of that portion of heaven to which he now has access. Jude 9 Re 12:7 : cf. Job 1:6 2:1. These are illustrations of the conflict of good and evil spirits in the unseen universe.



“is not found in the OT, and in the NT only in 1Th 4:16 and Jud 1:9, where it is used of Michael, who in Daniel is called ‘one of the chief princes,’ and ‘the great prince’ (Sept., ‘the great angel’), Dan 10:13, Dan 10:21; Dan 12:1. Cp. also Rev 12:7 …. Whether there are other beings of this exalted rank in the heavenly hosts, Scripture does not say, though the description ‘one of the chief princes’ suggests that this may be the case; cp. also Rom 8:38; Eph 1:21; Col 1:16, where the word translated ‘principalities’ is arche, the prefix in archangel.” * [* From Notes on Thessalonians, by Hogg and Vine, pp. 142.] In 1Th 4:16 the meaning seems to be that the voice of the Lord Jesus will be of the character of an “archangelic” shout.

[Vine NT]


abomination of desolation

Abomination of Desolation. reference to the Roman army because of its ensigns and images, which the soldiers worshipped (Mat 24:15), compare with Daniel 9:27.


The ABOMINATION OF DESOLATION foretold by, Dan 9:27 denotes, probably, the image of Jupiter, erected in the temple of Jerusalem by command of Antiochus Epiphanes. But by the Abomination of Desolation spoken of by our Lord, Mat 24:15 Mark 13:14, and foretold as about to be seen at Jerusalem during the last siege of that city by the Romans under Titus, is probably meant the Roman army, whose standards had the images of their gods and emperors upon them, and were worshipped in the precincts of the temple when that and the city were taken. Luke 21:20. See ARMOR.


Abomination of Desolation. des-o-lā´shun: The Hebrew root for abomination is שׁקץ, shāḳac, “to be filthy,” “to loathe,” “to abhor,” from which is derived שׁקּץ or שׁקּוּץ, shiḳḳuc or shiḳḳūc, “filthy,” especially “idolatrous.” This word is used to describe specific forms of idolatrous worship that were specially abhorrent, as of the Ammonites (1Ki 11:5, 1Ki 11:7); of the Moabites (1Ki 11:7; 2Ki 23:13). When Daniel undertook to specify an abomination so surpassingly disgusting to the sense of morality and decency, and so aggressive against everything that was godly as to drive all from its presence and leave its abode desolate, he chose this as the strongest among the several synonyms, adding the qualification “that maketh desolate” (Dan 11:31; Dan 12:11), Septuagint βδέλυγμα ἐρημώσεως, bdél-ug-ma er-ē-mō̇-se-ōš. The same noun, though in the plural, occurs in Deu 29:17; 2Ki 23:24; Isa 66:3; Jer 4:1; Jer 7:30; Jer 13:27; Jer 32:34; Eze 20:7, Eze 20:8, Eze 20:30; Dan 9:27; Hos 9:10; Zec 9:7. The New Testament equivalent of the noun is βδέλυγμα, bdél-ug-ma = “detestable,” i.e. (specially) “idolatrous.” Alluding to Daniel, Christ spoke of the “abomination of desolation” (Mat 24:15; Mark 13:14).

1. The Historical Background

Since the invasion of the Assyrians and Chaldeans, the Jewish people, both of the Northern and of the Southern kingdom, had been without political independence. From the Chaldeans the rulership of Judea had been transferred to the Persians, and from the Persians, after an interval of 200 years, to Alexander the Great. From the beginning of the Persian sovereignty, the Jews had been permitted to organize anew their religious and political commonwealth, thus establishing a state under the rulership of priests, for the high priest was not only the highest functionary of the cult, but also the chief magistrate in so far as these prerogatives were not exercised by the king of the conquering nation. Ezra had given a new significance to the tōrāh by having it read to the whole congregation of Israel and by his vigorous enforcement of the law of separation from the Gentiles. His emphasis of the law introduced the period of legalism and finical interpretation of the letter which called forth some of the bitterest invectives of our Saviour. Specialists of the law known as “scribes” devoted themselves to its study and subtle interpretation, and the pious beheld the highest moral accomplishment in the extremely conscientious observance of every precept. But in opposition to this class, there were those who, influenced by the Hellenistic culture, introduced by the conquests of Alexander the Great, were inclined to a more “liberal” policy. Thus, two opposing parties were developed: the Hellenistic, and the party of the Pious, or the Chasidim, ḥăṣīdhīm (Hasidaeans, 1 Macc 2:42; 7:13), who held fast to the strict ideal of the scribes. The former gradually came into ascendancy. Judea was rapidly becoming Hellenistic in all phases of its political, social and religious life, and the “Pious” were dwindling to a small minority sect. This was the situation when Antiochus Epiphanes set out to suppress the last vestige of the Jewish cult by the application of brute force.

2. Antiochus Epiphanes

Antiochus IV, son of Antiochus the Great, became the successor of his brother, Seleucus IV, who had been murdered by his minister, Heliodorus, as king of Syria (175-164 bc). He was by nature a despot; eccentric and unreliable; sometimes a spendthrift in his liberality, fraternizing in an affected manner with those of lower station; sometimes cruel and tyrannical, as witness his aggressions against Judea. Polybius (26 10) tells us that his eccentric ideas caused some to speak of him as a man of pure motive and humble character, while others hinted at insanity. The epithet Epiphanes is an abbreviation of theós epīphanḗs, which is the designation given himself by Antiochus on his coins, and means “the god who appears or reveals himself.” Egyptian writers translate the inscription, “God which comes forth,” namely, like the burning sun, Horos, on the horizon, thus identifying the king with the triumphal, appearing god. When Antiochus Epiphanes arose to the throne, Onias III, as high priest, was the leader of the old orthodox party in Judea; the head of the Hellenists was his own brother Jesus, or, as he preferred to designate himself, Jason, this being the Greek form of his name and indicating the trend of his mind. Jason promised the king large sums of money for the transfer of the office of high priest from his brother to himself and the privilege of erecting a gymnasium and a temple to Phallus, and for the granting of the privilege “to enroll the inhabitants of Jerusalem as citizens of Antioch.” Antiochus gladly agreed to everything. Onias was removed, Jason became high priest, and henceforth the process of Hellenizing Judea was pushed energetically. The Jewish cult was not attacked, but the “legal institutions were set aside, and illegal practices were introduced” (2 Macc 4:11). A gymnasium was erected outside the castle; the youth of Jerusalem exercised themselves in the gymnastic art of the Greeks, and even priests left their services at the altar to take part in the contest of the palaestra. The disregard of Jewish custom went so far that many artificially removed the traces of circumcision from their bodies, and with characteristic liberality, Jason even sent a contribution to the sacrifices in honor of Heracles on the occasion of the quadrennial festivities in Tyre.

3. The Suppression of the Jewish Cult

Under these conditions it is not surprising that Antiochus should have had both the inclination and the courage to undertake the total eradication of the Jewish religion and the establishment of Greek polytheism in its stead. The observance of all Jewish laws, especially those relating to the Sabbath and to circumcision, were forbidden under pain of death. The Jewish cult was set aside, and in all cities of Judea, sacrifices must be brought to the pagan deities. Representatives of the crown everywhere enforced the edict. Once a month a search was instituted, and whoever had secreted a copy of the Law or had observed the rite of circumcision was condemned to death. In Jerusalem on the 15th of Chislev of the year 145 aet Sel, i.e. in December 168 bc, a pagan altar was built on the Great Altar of Burnt Sacrifices, and on the 25th of Chislev, sacrifice was brought on this altar for the first time (1 Macc 1:54, 59). This evidently was the “abomination of desolation.” The sacrifice, according to 2 Macc was brought to the Olympian Zeus, to whom the temple of Jerusalem had been dedicated. At the feast of Dionysus, the Jews were obliged to march in the Bacchanalian procession, crowned with laurel leaves. Christ applies the phrase to what was to take place at the advance of the Romans against Jerusalem. They who would behold the “abomination of desolation” standing in the holy place, He bids flee to the mountains, which probably refers to the advance of the Roman army into the city and temple, carrying standards which bore images of the Roman gods and were the objects of pagan worship.


Abomination of Desolation, The.

The importance of this Scriptural expression is chiefly derived from the fact that in Matthew 24:15, and Mark 13:14, the appearance of the “abomination of desolation” standing in the “Holy Place” (Matthew), or where “it ought not” (Mark), is given by Our Lord to His disciples as the signal for their flight from Judea, at the time of the approaching ruin of Jerusalem (Luke 21:20). The expression itself is confessedly obscure. To determine its meaning, interpreters have naturally betaken themselves to the original Hebrew of the book of Daniel; for our first Evangelist distinctly says that “the abomination of desolation” he has in view “was spoken of by Daniel the prophet”; and further, the expression he makes use of, in common with St. Mark, is simply the Greek phrase whereby the Septuagint translators rendered literally the Hebrew wordsshíqqûç shômem found in Daniel 12:11; 9:27; 11:31. Unfortunately, despite all their efforts to explain these Hebrew terms, Biblical scholars are still at variance about their precise meaning. While most commentators regard the first “shíqqûç“, usually rendered by “abomination”, as designating anything (statue, altar, etc.) that pertains to idolatrous worship, others take it to be a contemptuous designation of a heathen god or idol. Again, while most commentators render the second “shômem” by the abstract word “desolation”, others treat it as a concrete form referring to a person, “a ravager”, or even as a participial known meaning “that maketh desolate”. The most recent interpretation which has been suggested of these Hebrew words is to the following effect: The phrase shíqqûç shômem stands for the original expression bá’ ál shámáyîm (Baal of heaven), a title found in Phoenician and Aramaic inscriptions, and the semitic equivalent of the Greek Zeus, Jupiter, but modified in Daniel through Jewish aversion for the name of a Pagan deity. While thus disagreeing as to the precise sense of the Hebrew phrase usually rendered by “the abomination of desolation”, Christian scholars are practically at one with regard to its general meaning. They commonly admit, and indeed rightly, that the Hebrew expression must needs be understood of some idolatrous emblem, the setting up of which would entail the ultimate desolation of the Temple of Jerusalem (1 Maccabees 1:57; iv, 38). And with this general meaning in view, they proceed to determine the historical event between Our Lord’s prediction and the ruin of the Temple (A.D. 70), which should be regarded as “the abomination of desolation” spoken of in Matthew 24:15, andMark 13:14. But here they are again divided. Many scholars have thought, and still think, that the introduction of the Roman standards into the Holy Land, and more particularly into the Holy City, shortly before the destruction of the Temple, is the event foretold by Our Lord to His disciples as the signal for their flight from Judea. It is true that the standards were worshipped by the Roman soldiers and abhorred by the Jews as the emblem of Roman idolatry. Yet they can hardly be considered as the “the abomination of desolation” referred to in Matthew 24:15. The Evangelist says that this “abomination” is to stand in the “holy place”, whereby is naturally meant the Temple (see also Daniel 9:27, where the Vulgate reads: “there shall be in the Temple the abomination of the desolation”), and the Roman standards were actually introduced into the Temple only after it had been entered by Titus, that, too late to serve as a warning for the Christians of Judea. Other scholars are of the mind that the desecration of the Temple by the Zealots who seized it and made it their stronghold shortly before Jerusalem was invested by Titus, is the event foretold by Our Lord. But this view is commonly rejected for the simple reason that “the abomination of desolation” spoken of by Daniel and referred to in St. Matthew’s Gospel, was certainly something connected with idolatrous worship. Others, finally, interpret Our Lord’s warning to His disciples in the light of the history of attempt to have his own statue set up and worshipped in the Temple of Jerusalem. The following are the principal facts of that history. About A.D. 40, Caius Caligula issued a peremptory decree ordering the erection and worship of his statute in the Temple of God. He also appointed to the government of Syria, bidding him carry out that decree even at the cost of a war against the rebellious Jews. Whereupon the Jews in tens of thousands protested to the governor that they were willing to be slaughtered rather than to be condemned to witness that idolatrous profanation of their holy Temple. Soon afterwards Petronius asked Caligula to revoke his order, and Agrippa I, who than lived at Rome, prevailed upon the Emperor not to enforce his decree. It seems, however, that Caligula soon repented of the concession, and that but for his untimely death (A.D. 41) he would have had his statue set up in Jerusalem (E. Schurer, History of the Jewish People in the Time of Christ, I Div. II, 95-105; tr.). In view of these facts it is affirmed by many scholars that the early Christians could easily regard the forthcoming erection of statue in the Temple as the act of idolatrous Abomination which, according to the prophet Daniel 9:27, portended the ruin of the House of God, and therefore see in it the actual sign given by Christ for their flight from Judea. This last interpretation of the phrase “the abomination of desolation” is not without its own difficulties. Yet it seems preferable to the others that have been set for by commentators at large.

FRANCIS E. GIGOT Transcribed by Donald J. Boon The Catholic Encyclopedia, Volume ICopyright &#169; 1907 by Robert Appleton CompanyOnline Edition Copyright &#169; 2003 by K. KnightNihil Obstat, March 1, 1907. Remy Lafort, S.T.D., CensorImprimatur. +John Cardinal Farley, Archbishop of New York.

[Catholic Encyclopedia]

Abomination of Desolation. This exact expression occurs only in Matt. 24: 15 and Mark 13: 14, referring to what had been revealed to Daniel in Dan. 12: 11, where it is connected with the great tribulation (ver. 1) spoken of by the Lord in those Gospels.Dan. 9: 27 shows that the time of the abomination is in the last half of the last of the seventy weeks of Daniel named in Dan. 9: 24. The person who makes a covenant with the Jews in those days and afterwards breaks it, we know to be the head of the future Roman empire. See SEVENTY WEEKS. Of this person an image will be made, and the people will be constrained to worship it, Rev. 13: 14, 15; but we do not read that it will be carried into the future temple; whereas our Lord says that the abomination will stand in the holy place. On the other hand we read that the Antichrist “exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he, as God, sitteth in the temple of God, showing himself that he is God.” 2 Thess. 2: 4. The ‘abomination of desolation’ is evidently connected with the trinity of evil spoken of in Rev. 13 and will be the work of Satan, the Roman beast, and the false prophet. It will end in dire desolation. The desolator is the Assyrian, Isa. 8: 7, 8; Isa. 28: 2,18 the northern king who will then hold the territory of Assyria.Dan. 11: 40.


Little Owl

A night bird of prey, unfit for food. Several species are found in Palestine, and are mentioned in the Bible; as in Le 11:17 De 14:16 Isa 14:23; 34:15; Zep 2:14. One of the words, however, translated “owl,” probably means “OSTRICH,” (which see;) and another, Le 11:17 De 14:16 Isa 34:11, the ibis or night heron.


(1.) Heb. bath-haya’anah, “daughter of greediness” or of “shouting.” In the list of unclean birds (Lev. 11:16; Deut. 14:15); also mentioned in Job 30:29; Isa. 13:21; 34:13; 43:20; Jer. 50:39; Micah 1:8. In all these passages the Revised Version translates “ostrich” (q.v.), which is the correct rendering.

(2.) Heb. yanshuph, rendered “great owl” in Lev. 11:17; Deut. 14:16, and “owl” in Isa. 34:11. This is supposed to be the Egyptian eagle-owl (Bubo ascalaphus), which takes the place of the eagle-owl (Bubo maximus) found in Southern Europe. It is found frequenting the ruins of Egypt and also of the Holy Land. “Its cry is a loud, prolonged, and very powerful hoot. I know nothing which more vividly brought to my mind the sense of desolation and loneliness than the re-echoing hoot of two or three of these great owls as I stood at midnight among the ruined temples of Baalbek” (Tristram).

The LXX. and Vulgate render this word by “ibis”, i.e., the Egyptian heron.

(3.) Heb. kos, rendered “little owl” in Lev. 11:17; Deut. 14:16, and “owl” in Ps. 102:6. The Arabs call this bird “the mother of ruins.” It is by far the most common of all the owls of Palestine. It is the Athene persica, the bird of Minerva, the symbol of ancient Athens.

(4.) Heb. kippoz, the “great owl” (Isa. 34:15); Revised Version, “arrow-snake;” LXX. and Vulgate, “hedgehog,” reading in the text, kippod, instead of kippoz. There is no reason to doubt the correctness of the rendering of the Authorized Version. Tristram says: “The word [i.e., kippoz] is very possibly an imitation of the cry of the scops owl (Scops giu), which is very common among ruins, caves, and old walls of towns…It is a migrant, returning to Palestine in spring.”

(5.) Heb. lilith, “screech owl” (Isa. 34:14, marg. and R.V., “night monster”). The Hebrew word is from a root signifying “night.” Some species of the owl is obviously intended by this word. It may be the hooting or tawny owl (Syrnium aluco), which is common in Egypt and in many parts of Palestine. This verse in Isaiah is “descriptive of utter and perpetual desolation, of a land that should be full of ruins, and inhabited by the animals that usually make such ruins their abode.”


Ostrich, the true rendering of bath hayanah. (See OSTRICH) Yanshowph; Lev 11:17, “the great owl.” From a root, “twilight” (Bochart), or to puff the breath (Knobel). Deu 14:16; Isa 34:11. The horned owl, Bubo maximus, not as Septuagint the ibis, the sacred bird of Egypt. Maurer thinks the heron or crane, from nashaf “to blow,” as it utters a sound like blowing a horn (Rev 18:2). Chaldee and Syriac support “owl.” Kos; Lev 11:17, “the little owl.” Athene meridionalis on coins of Athens: emblem of Minerva, common in Syria; grave, but not heavy. Psa 102:6, “I am like an owl in a ruin” (Syriac and Arabic versions), expressing his loneliness, surrounded by foes, with none to befriend. The Arabs call the owl “mother of ruins,” um elcharab.
The Hebrew means a “cup”, perhaps alluding to its concave face, the eye at the bottom, the feathers radiating on each side of the beak outward; this appears especially in the Otus vulgaris, the “long-cared owl”. Kippoz. Isa 34:15, “the great owl.” But Gesenius “the arrow snake,” or “the darting tree serpent”; related to the Arabic kipphaz. The context favors “owl”; for “gather under her shadow” applies best to a mother bird fostering her young under her wings. The Septuagint, Chaldee, Arabic, Syriac, Vulgate read kippod, “hedgehog.” The great eagle owl is one of the largest birds of prey; with dark plumage, and enormous head, from which glare out two great eyes. Lilith. Isa 34:14, “screech owl”; from layil “the night.” Irby and Mangles state as to Petra of Edom “the screaming of hawks, eagles, and owls, soaring above our heads, annoyed at anyone approaching their lonely habitation, added much to the singularity of the scene.” The Strix flammea, “the barn owl”; shrieking in the quietude of the night, it appalls the startled hearer with its unearthly sounds.


oul (bath ha-ya`anah; Latin Ulula): The name of every nocturnal bird of prey of the Natural Order Striges. These birds range from the great horned owl of 2 feet in length, through many subdivisions to the little screech-owl of 5 inches. All are characterized by very large heads, many have ear tufts, all have large eyes surrounded by a disk of tiny, stiff, radiating feathers. The remainder of the plumage has no aftershaft. So these birds make the softest flight of any creature traveling on wing. A volume could be written on the eye of the owl, perhaps its most wonderful feature being in the power of the bird to enlarge the iris if it wishes more distinct vision. There is material for another on the prominent and peculiar auditory parts. With almost all owls the feet are so arranged that two toes can be turned forward and two back, thus reinforcing the grip of the bird by an extra toe and giving it unusual strength of foot. All are night-hunters, taking prey to be found at that time, of size according to the strength. The owl was very numerous in the caves, ruined temples and cities, and even in the fertile valleys of Palestine. It is given place in the Bible because it was considered unfit for food and because people dreaded the cries of every branch of the numerous family. It appeared often, as most birds, in the early versions of the Bible; later translators seem to feel that it was used in several places where the ostrich really was intended (see OSTRICH). It would appear to a natural historian that the right bird could be selected by the location, where the text is confusing. The ostrich had a voice that was even more terrifying, when raised in the night, than that of the owl. But it was a bird of the desert, of wide range and traveled only by day. This would confine its habitat to the desert and the greenery where it joined fertile land, but would not bring it in very close touch with civilization. The owl is a bird of ruins, that lay mostly in the heart of rich farming lands, where prosperous cities had been built and then destroyed by enemies. Near these locations the ostrich would be pursued for its plumage, and its nesting conditions did not prevail. The location was strictly the owl’s chosen haunt, and it had the voice to fit all the requirements of the text. In the lists of abominations, the original Hebrew yanshuph, derived from a root meaning twilight, is translated “great owl” (see Le 11:17 and De 14:16). It is probable that this was a bird about 2 ft. in length, called the eagle-owl. In the same lists the word koc (nuktikorax) refers to ruins, and the bird indicated is specified as the “little owl,” that is, smaller than the great owl–about the size of our barn owl. This bird is referred to as the “mother of ruins,” and the translations that place it in deserted temples and cities are beyond all doubt correct. Qippoz (echinos) occurs once (Isa 34:15), and is translated “great owl” in former versions; lately (in the American Standard Revised Version) it is changed to “dart-snake” (the English Revised Version “arrowsnake”). In this same description lilith (onokentauros), “a specter of night,” was formerly screech-owl, now it reads “night monster,” which is more confusing and less suggestive. The owls in the lists of abominations (Lev 11:17; Lev 11:18; Deut 14:16) are the little owl, the great owl and the horned owl. The only other owl of all those that produced such impressions of desolation in the Books of Isaiah, Jeremiah, Job, and Micah is referred to in Ps 102:6:

“I am like a pelican of the wilderness;

I am become as an owl of the waste places.”

Here it would appear that the bird habitual to the wilderness and the waste places, that certainly would be desert, would be the ostrich–while in any quotation referring to ruins, the owl would be the bird indicated by natural conditions.

Gene Stratton-Porter



In the passages that speak of the unclean birds “the owl . . . . the little owl . . . . and the great owl,” are enumerated. Lev. 11:16, 17; Deut. 14:15, 16. The Hebrew for the first is bath yaanah. (See OSTRICH.) The second is kos: it occurs in the above two passages and in Ps. 102:6; and doubtless refers to the owl. The third, yanshuph, occurs also in Isa. 34:11. This in the LXX and Vulgate is the ‘ibis,’ and has been supposed by some to refer to the Ibis religiosa, a sacred bird of Egypt. There is also lilith in Isa. 34:14 only, translated ‘screech owl,’ (margin and R.V. ‘night-monster’): its reference is doubtful. Also qippoz in Isa. 34:15 only, ‘great owl,’ (R.V. ‘arrowsnake;’ LXX and Vulgate ‘hedgehog,’ reading perhaps qippod with six Hebrew MSS.) There are several well-known species of the owl, but to which of them these various words refer cannot be specified with certainty. The Athene meridionalis is the owl most common in Palestine; the Strix flammea is the white owl.


• A carnivorous bird.

• Unclean
Lev 11:16-17; Deut 14:16

• Sometimes translated »ostrich«
Lev 11:16; Deut 14:15; Job 30:29; Isa 13:21; Isa 34:11; Isa 34:13; Isa 43:20; Jer 50:39; Mic 1:8




Little Owl (see Owl).

Source: [Anon-Animals]