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Lyndie
Nov 10th 2013, 09:00 PM
I am looking for any web sites/resources that can tell me what symbols are in the bible, and what they mean. For example- what thorn in the flesh means, what wine symbolizes, what oil symbolizes. I am also looking for resources to help me tell the difference when a scripture is using symbolism or is being literal. Ex- when Jesus says eat my body, drink my blood. I know it's not literal in that scripture. Some others though are hard to tell the difference. Does anyone know a resource like this? I could serach google but I know there are some sites out there and their symbolism meaning can be downright weird, so I am looking for something theologically sound.

Francis Drake
Nov 10th 2013, 09:50 PM
I am looking for any web sites/resources that can tell me what symbols are in the bible, and what they mean. For example- what thorn in the flesh means, what wine symbolizes, what oil symbolizes. I am also looking for resources to help me tell the difference when a scripture is using symbolism or is being literal. Ex- when Jesus says eat my body, drink my blood. I know it's not literal in that scripture. Some others though are hard to tell the difference. Does anyone know a resource like this? I could serach google but I know there are some sites out there and their symbolism meaning can be downright weird, so I am looking for something theologically sound.

I don't know any resources for symbolism, but can answer one for you.

Paul's thorn in the flesh.

The New Testament frequently used the journey from Egypt into the promised land as a metaphor for our journey from bondage to salvation. The inhabitants of the land that were to be driven out correspond to the demonic spirits Paul frequently dealt with.

Thus Paul, a bible scholar takes a direct reference for his own thorns in the flesh from both Numbers and Judges.

Numbers33v55But if you do not drive out the inhabitants of the land from before you, then it shall come about that those whom you let remain of them will become as pricks in your eyes and as thorns in your sides, and they will trouble you in the land in which you live. 56'And as I plan to do to them, so I will do to you.'"

Judges2v2and as for you, you shall make no covenant with the inhabitants of this land; you shall tear down their altars.' But you have not obeyed Me; what is this you have done? 3"Therefore I also said, 'I will not drive them out before you; but they will become as thorns in your sides and their gods will be a snare to you.'" 4When the angel of the LORD spoke these words to all the sons of Israel, the people lifted up their voices and wept.

Take note that God instructed the Israelites to totally drive out any inhabitants from the land. God would not do it for them, but would be the source of their power and their victory. If they got complacent and started to live amongst these tribes, then God would stand back and let them descend into defeat and bondage.

When God then decides to punish these tribes, any Israelites amongst them would just become collateral damage!

Paul makes it clear that the thorn in his flesh was a messenger (angel) of Satan, therefore it was a demonic attack. Now to comprehend what sort of land we are talking about see Matt11v12" From the days of John the Baptist until now the kingdom of heaven suffers violence, and violent men take it by force.

Satan, the God of this world, controls the spiritual atmosphere of the planet. He works through the governing systems and religious institutions to control the world for his purposes. Under John the Baptist, many had departed from Pharisaical theology. (Remember that Jesus accused the Pharisees of shutting heaven). These believers were now rejoicing in the reality of God for themselves. John's teaching had opened heaven, thus taking some of Satan's territory in the kingdom of the heavens.

Paul was following the same route and also coming under attack for it. In other words, the spiritual inhabitants of the spiritual land he was invading were retaliating. So when Paul cried out to the Lord, the reply was, "my grace is sufficient for you...................."
Meaning that I am not going to do what I have commended you to do. Start taking hold of the anointing (grace) that you have been given and drive them out. I shall be alongside you like I was with Israel.

The lesson here is that God has called us to drive demons out. We can cry out to God all day long and as with Paul, the answer will be, "No my son! You do it, that is why I gave you my Holy Spirit!"
Even Jesus acknowledged the same in Matt12v 27"If I by Beelzebul cast out demons, by whom do your sons cast them out? For this reason they will be your judges. 28"But if I cast out demons by the Spirit of God, then the kingdom of God has come upon you.
Jesus drove demons out by the Spirit of God. That Spirit has been poured out on us, therefore we are also called to cast the enemy out of what he considers his possessions and from people as we deliver them from demons

Banislam
Nov 11th 2013, 01:53 AM
I am looking for any web sites/resources that can tell me what symbols are in the bible, and what they mean. For example- what thorn in the flesh means, what wine symbolizes, what oil symbolizes. I am also looking for resources to help me tell the difference when a scripture is using symbolism or is being literal. Ex- when Jesus says eat my body, drink my blood. I know it's not literal in that scripture. Some others though are hard to tell the difference. Does anyone know a resource like this? I could serach google but I know there are some sites out there and their symbolism meaning can be downright weird, so I am looking for something theologically sound.

I use to have a really good one but I don't remember the name of it or who put it out. I'll look and see if I can find it...

Ta-An
Nov 11th 2013, 06:59 AM
What we sometimes see as Symbolism, can also be idiomatic usage of the language at the time.

Boo
Nov 11th 2013, 09:53 AM
I am looking for any web sites/resources that can tell me what symbols are in the bible, and what they mean. For example- what thorn in the flesh means, what wine symbolizes, what oil symbolizes. I am also looking for resources to help me tell the difference when a scripture is using symbolism or is being literal. Ex- when Jesus says eat my body, drink my blood. I know it's not literal in that scripture. Some others though are hard to tell the difference. Does anyone know a resource like this? I could serach google but I know there are some sites out there and their symbolism meaning can be downright weird, so I am looking for something theologically sound.

Reading your mini bio, I see many similarities between your youth and mine. I do understand much of what you spoke about.

As far as symbolism, there are books and list given in many places as well as Bible Software that offers information.

For an easy way if you are online, you can look here (http://amazingdiscoveries.org/RT_encyclopedia_Revelation_Daniel_symbols) and here. (http://www.biblegateway.com/resources/dictionary-of-bible-themes/1670-symbols)

Rather than maintain a list, you can use Bible Study Tools and type in the symbol that you would like to search. This method lets you explore the symbol from a few perspectives. It is here. (http://www.biblestudytools.com/dictionaries/)

Eyelog
Nov 11th 2013, 10:11 AM
Reading your mini bio, I see many similarities between your youth and mine. I do understand much of what you spoke about.

As far as symbolism, there are books and list given in many places as well as Bible Software that offers information.

For an easy way if you are online, you can look here (http://amazingdiscoveries.org/RT_encyclopedia_Revelation_Daniel_symbols) and here. (http://www.biblegateway.com/resources/dictionary-of-bible-themes/1670-symbols)

Rather than maintain a list, you can use Bible Study Tools and type in the symbol that you would like to search. This method lets you explore the symbol from a few perspectives. It is here. (http://www.biblestudytools.com/dictionaries/)

Boo, haven't followed your links, but I'm sure they are good, knowing you as the source.

One might add these caveats:

1. The search for and reliance on symbolism can take one far afield of simply understanding the text, and relying too much on secondary sources to interpret Scripture. So, take what is suggested by them as advisory, but test it against a sound plain read.

2. The Bible interprets the Bible to a great extent, so doing a word study of the original language and its uses throughout Scripture can be very informative. That kind of analysis should not be neglected in reliance on reading a secondary source only.

As you have said in so many words, Boo, it is easy to become an adherent of the words of man rather than of what Scripture really says.

We need to know what it says, and then seek to understand it in its many contextual frames -- symbolism is but one. Indeed, Scripture can be symbolic and literal simultaneously at times. It can pertain to one specific thing and situation, but espouse a spiritual principle that is universal. Etc.

Lyndie
Nov 11th 2013, 12:44 PM
Thanks for the help so far, much appreciated.

LandShark
Nov 11th 2013, 02:42 PM
I am looking for any web sites/resources that can tell me what symbols are in the bible, and what they mean. For example- what thorn in the flesh means, what wine symbolizes, what oil symbolizes. I am also looking for resources to help me tell the difference when a scripture is using symbolism or is being literal. Ex- when Jesus says eat my body, drink my blood. I know it's not literal in that scripture. Some others though are hard to tell the difference. Does anyone know a resource like this? I could serach google but I know there are some sites out there and their symbolism meaning can be downright weird, so I am looking for something theologically sound.

Most of these things are called "Hebraisms," they are abstract phrases unique to Hebrew and in particular, that culture so long ago. You'll find some answers here (http://jewishstudies.eteacherbiblical.com/2012/08/cataloging-the-new-testaments-hebraisms-parts-1-5/) in this well written document and also here (http://www.ancient-hebrew.org/24_idioms.html) is a list of Hebrew idioms. There was even a thread on this forum (http://bibleforums.org/showthread.php/212994-Understanding-Hebrew-idioms-and-figures-of-speech) a few years ago that might shed some light for you. May your studies be blessed!

Lyndie
Nov 11th 2013, 02:58 PM
Thanks Landshark.