Numerology and the Bible – A brief overview

There are four recognized layers of interpretation in regards to the bible: Literal, Allegorical-texts hold symbolic meaning, Tropical/moral-broader moral lessons, and Anagogical-mystical, metaphorical sense. In the allegorical interpretations biblical numerology is used in understanding the scriptures. Biblical numerology relates to the study and meaning of individual numbers in Scripture.

The two most commonly repeated numbers in the Bible are 7 and 40. The number 7 signifies completion or perfection. It is often called “God’s number” since he is the only one who is perfect and complete. The number 40 is often understood as the “number of probation or trial.” The Israelite’s wandered for 40 years; Moses was on the mount for 40 days; 40 days were involved in the story of Jonah and Nineveh; Jesus was tempted for 40 days; there were 40 days between Jesus’ resurrection and ascension.

The number 3 is also thought to be the number of divine perfection, the triune nature of God: The Trinity consists of Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Another number repeated in the Bible is 4, which is the number of creation: North, South, East, West; four seasons. The number 6 is thought to be the number of man, or the fallen nature of humanity: Man was created on the 6th day; man labors 6 days only.

Another example of the Bible using a number to signify something is the number 666. 666 is oddly a triangular number, thus representing a counterfeit trinity. The number is identified as the mark of the beast in Revelation 13:18. 13 is another significant number, often interpreted as lawlessness and rebellion.

Many more numbers could be given, like 1000 – Symbolizing the conclusion of a time. Jesus will return to establish a millennial kingdom on earth. He will reign for 1,000 years after which Satan will launch one last effort against Christ that will prove fatal for Lucifer (Rev. 19:16; 20:4, 6). However, the numbers mentioned in this article represent the most impressive and widely accepted numbers symbolized in the Bible.




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