Fair Havens - a harbour in the south of Crete, some 5 miles to the
east of which was the town of Lasea (Acts 27:8). Here the ship of Alexandria
in which Paul and his companions sailed was detained a considerable time
waiting for a favourable wind. Contrary to Paul's advice, the master of
the ship determined to prosecute the voyage, as the harbour was deemed incommodious
for wintering in (9-12). The result was that, after a stormy voyage, the
vessel was finally wrecked on the coast of Malta (27:40-44).
Fairs - (Heb. 'izabhonim), found seven times
in Ezek. 27, and nowhere else. The Authorized Version renders the word thus
in all these instances, except in verse 33, where "wares" is used. The Revised
Version uniformly renders by "wares," which is the correct rendering of
the Hebrew word. It never means "fairs" in the modern sense of the word.
Faith - Faith is in general the persuasion
of the mind that a certain statement is true (Phil. 1:27; 2 Thess. 2:13).
Its primary idea is trust. A thing is true, and therefore worthy of trust.
It admits of many degrees up to full assurance of faith, in accordance with
the evidence on which it rests.
Faith is the result of teaching (Rom. 10:14-17). Knowledge is an essential
element in all faith, and is sometimes spoken of as an equivalent to faith
(John 10:38; 1 John 2:3). Yet the two are distinguished in this respect,
that faith includes in it assent, which is an act of the will in addition
to the act of the understanding. Assent to the truth is of the essence
of faith, and the ultimate ground on which our assent to any revealed
truth rests is the veracity of God.
Historical faith is the apprehension of and assent to certain statements
which are regarded as mere facts of history.
Temporary faith is that state of mind which is awakened in men (e.g.,
Felix) by the exhibition of the truth and by the influence of religious
sympathy, or by what is sometimes styled the common operation of the Holy
Saving faith is so called because it has eternal life inseparably connected
with it. It cannot be better defined than in the words of the Assembly's
Shorter Catechism: "Faith in Jesus Christ is a saving grace, whereby we
receive and rest upon him alone for salvation, as he is offered to us
in the gospel."
The object of saving faith is the whole revealed Word of God. Faith
accepts and believes it as the very truth most sure. But the special act
of faith which unites to Christ has as its object the person and the work
of the Lord Jesus Christ (John 7:38; Acts 16:31). This is the specific
act of faith by which a sinner is justified before God (Rom. 3:22, 25;
Gal. 2:16; Phil. 3:9; John 3:16-36; Acts 10:43; 16:31). In this act of
faith the believer appropriates and rests on Christ alone as Mediator
in all his offices.
This assent to or belief in the truth received upon the divine testimony
has always associated with it a deep sense of sin, a distinct view of
Christ, a consenting will, and a loving heart, together with a reliance
on, a trusting in, or resting in Christ. It is that state of mind in which
a poor sinner, conscious of his sin, flees from his guilty self to Christ
his Saviour, and rolls over the burden of all his sins on him. It consists
chiefly, not in the assent given to the testimony of God in his Word,
but in embracing with fiducial reliance and trust the one and only Saviour
whom God reveals. This trust and reliance is of the essence of faith.
By faith the believer directly and immediately appropriates Christ as
his own. Faith in its direct act makes Christ ours. It is not a work which
God graciously accepts instead of perfect obedience, but is only the hand
by which we take hold of the person and work of our Redeemer as the only
ground of our salvation.
Saving faith is a moral act, as it proceeds from a renewed will, and
a renewed will is necessary to believing assent to the truth of God (1
Cor. 2:14; 2 Cor. 4:4). Faith, therefore, has its seat in the moral part
of our nature fully as much as in the intellectual. The mind must first
be enlightened by divine teaching (John 6:44; Acts 13:48; 2 Cor. 4:6;
Eph. 1:17, 18) before it can discern the things of the Spirit.
Faith is necessary to our salvation (Mark 16:16), not because there
is any merit in it, but simply because it is the sinner's taking the place
assigned him by God, his falling in with what God is doing.
The warrant or ground of faith is the divine testimony, not the reasonableness
of what God says, but the simple fact that he says it. Faith rests immediately
on, "Thus saith the Lord." But in order to this faith the veracity, sincerity,
and truth of God must be owned and appreciated, together with his unchangeableness.
God's word encourages and emboldens the sinner personally to transact
with Christ as God's gift, to close with him, embrace him, give himself
to Christ, and take Christ as his. That word comes with power, for it
is the word of God who has revealed himself in his works, and especially
in the cross. God is to be believed for his word's sake, but also for
his name's sake.
Faith in Christ secures for the believer freedom from condemnation,
or justification before God; a participation in the life that is in Christ,
the divine life (John 14:19; Rom. 6:4-10; Eph. 4:15,16, etc.); "peace
with God" (Rom. 5:1); and sanctification (Acts 26:18; Gal. 5:6; Acts 15:9).
All who thus believe in Christ will certainly be saved (John 6:37, 40;
10:27, 28; Rom. 8:1).
The faith=the gospel (Acts 6:7; Rom. 1:5; Gal. 1:23; 1 Tim. 3:9; Jude
Faithful - as a designation of Christians,
means full of faith, trustful, and not simply trustworthy (Acts 10:45; 16:1;
2 Cor. 6:15; Col. 1:2; 1 Tim. 4:3, 12; 5:16; 6:2; Titus 1:6; Eph. 1:1; 1
Cor. 4:17, etc.).
It is used also of God's word or covenant as true and to be trusted
(Ps. 119:86, 138; Isa. 25:1; 1 Tim. 1:15; Rev. 21:5; 22:6, etc.).
Fall of man - an expression probably borrowed
from the Apocryphal Book of Wisdom, to express the fact of the revolt of
our first parents from God, and the consequent sin and misery in which they
and all their posterity were involved.
The history of the Fall is recorded in Gen. 2 and 3. That history is
to be literally interpreted. It records facts which underlie the whole
system of revealed truth. It is referred to by our Lord and his apostles
not only as being true, but as furnishing the ground of all God's subsequent
dispensations and dealings with the children of men. The record of Adam's
temptation and fall must be taken as a true historical account, if we
are to understand the Bible at all as a revelation of God's purpose of
The effects of this first sin upon our first parents themselves were
(1) "shame, a sense of degradation and pollution; (2) dread of the displeasure
of God, or a sense of guilt, and the consequent desire to hide from his
presence. These effects were unavoidable. They prove the loss not only
of innocence but of original righteousness, and, with it, of the favour
and fellowship of God. The state therefore to which Adam was reduced by
his disobedience, so far as his subjective condition is concerned, was
analogous to that of the fallen angels. He was entirely and absolutely
ruined" (Hodge's Theology).
But the unbelief and disobedience of our first parents brought not only
on themselves this misery and ruin, it entailed also the same sad consequences
on all their descendants. (1.) The guilt, i.e., liability to punishment,
of that sin comes by imputation upon all men, because all were represented
by Adam in the covenant of works (q.v.). (See IMPUTATION.)
(2.) Hence, also, all his descendants inherit a corrupt nature. In all
by nature there is an inherent and prevailing tendency to sin. This universal
depravity is taught by universal experience. All men sin as soon as they
are capable of moral actions. The testimony of the Scriptures to the same
effect is most abundant (Rom. 1; 2; 3:1-19, etc.).
(3.) This innate depravity is total: we are by nature "dead in trespasses
and sins," and must be "born again" before we can enter into the kingdom
(John 3:7, etc.).
(4.) Resulting from this "corruption of our whole nature" is our absolute
moral inability to change our nature or to obey the law of God.
Commenting on John 9:3, Ryle well remarks: "A deep and instructive principle
lies in these words. They surely throw some light on that great question,
the origin of evil. God has thought fit to allow evil to exist in order
that he may have a platform for showing his mercy, grace, and compassion.
If man had never fallen there would have been no opportunity of showing
divine mercy. But by permitting evil, mysterious as it seems, God's works
of grace, mercy, and wisdom in saving sinners have been wonderfully manifested
to all his creatures. The redeeming of the church of elect sinners is
the means of 'showing to principalities and powers the manifold wisdom
of God' (Eph. 3:10). Without the Fall we should have known nothing of
the Cross and the Gospel."
On the monuments of Egypt are found representations of a deity in human
form, piercing with a spear the head of a serpent. This is regarded as
an illustration of the wide dissemination of the tradition of the Fall.
The story of the "golden age," which gives place to the "iron age", the
age of purity and innocence, which is followed by a time when man becomes
a prey to sin and misery, as represented in the mythology of Greece and
Rome, has also been regarded as a tradition of the Fall.
Fallow-deer - Deut. 14:5 (R.V., "Wild goat");
1 Kings 4:23 (R.V., "roebucks"). This animal, called in Hebrew yahmur,
from a word meaning "to be red," is regarded by some as the common fallow-deer,
the Cervus dama, which is said to be found very generally over Western and
Southern Asia. It is called "fallow" from its pale-red or yellow colour.
Some interpreters, however, regard the name as designating the bubale, Antelope
bubale, the "wild cow" of North Africa, which is about the size of a stag,
like the hartebeest of South Africa. A species of deer has been found at
Mount Carmel which is called yahmur by the Arabs. It is said to be
similar to the European roebuck.
Fallow-ground - The expression, "Break up
your fallow ground" (Hos. 10:12; Jer. 4:3) means, "Do not sow your seed
among thorns", i.e., break off all your evil habits; clear your hearts of
weeds, in order that they may be prepared for the seed of righteousness.
Land was allowed to lie fallow that it might become more fruitful; but when
in this condition, it soon became overgrown with thorns and weeds. The cultivator
of the soil was careful to "break up" his fallow ground, i.e., to clear
the field of weeds, before sowing seed in it. So says the prophet, "Break
off your evil ways, repent of your sins, cease to do evil, and then the
good seed of the word will have room to grow and bear fruit."
Familiar spirit - Sorcerers or necormancers,
who professed to call up the dead to answer questions, were said to have
a "familiar spirit" (Deut. 18:11; 2 Kings 21:6; 2 Chr. 33:6; Lev. 19:31;
20:6; Isa. 8:19; 29:4). Such a person was called by the Hebrews an 'ob,
which properly means a leathern bottle; for sorcerers were regarded as vessels
containing the inspiring demon. This Hebrew word was equivalent to the pytho
of the Greeks, and was used to denote both the person and the spirit which
possessed him (Lev. 20:27; 1 Sam. 28:8; comp. Acts 16:16). The word "familiar"
is from the Latin familiaris, meaning a "household servant," and was intended
to express the idea that sorcerers had spirits as their servants ready to
obey their commands.
Famine - The first mentioned in Scripture
was so grievous as to compel Abraham to go down to the land of Egypt (Gen.
26:1). Another is mentioned as having occurred in the days of Isaac, causing
him to go to Gerar (Gen. 26:1, 17). But the most remarkable of all was that
which arose in Egypt in the days of Joseph, which lasted for seven years
Famines were sent as an effect of God's anger against a guilty people
(2 Kings 8:1, 2; Amos 8:11; Deut. 28:22-42; 2 Sam. 21:1; 2 Kings 6:25-28;
25:3; Jer. 14:15; 19:9; 42:17, etc.). A famine was predicted by Agabus
(Acts 11:28). Josephus makes mention of the famine which occurred A.D.
45. Helena, queen of Adiabene, being at Jerusalem at that time, procured
corn from Alexandria and figs from Cyprus for its poor inhabitants.
Fan - a winnowing shovel by which grain
was thrown up against the wind that it might be cleansed from broken straw
and chaff (Isa. 30:24; Jer. 15:7; Matt. 3:12). (See AGRICULTURE.)
Farm - (Matt. 22:5). Every Hebrew had
a certain portion of land assigned to him as a possession (Num. 26:33-56).
In Egypt the lands all belonged to the king, and the husbandmen were obliged
to give him a fifth part of the produce; so in Palestine Jehovah was the
sole possessor of the soil, and the people held it by direct tenure from
him. By the enactment of Moses, the Hebrews paid a tithe of the produce
to Jehovah, which was assigned to the priesthood. Military service when
required was also to be rendered by every Hebrew at his own expense. The
occuptaion of a husbandman was held in high honour (1 Sam. 11:5-7; 1 Kings
19:19; 2 Chr. 26:10). (See TITHE.)
Farthing - (1.) Matt. 10:29; Luke 12:6.
Greek assarion, i.e., a small as, which was a Roman coin equal to
a tenth of a denarius or drachma, nearly equal to a halfpenny of our money.
(2.) Matt. 5:26; Mark 12:42 (Gr. kodrantes), the quadrant, the fourth
of an as, equal to two lepta, mites. The lepton (mite) was the
very smallest copper coin.
Fast - The sole fast required by the law
of Moses was that of the great Day of Atonement (q.v.), Lev. 23:26-32. It
is called "the fast" (Acts 27:9).
The only other mention of a periodical fast in the Old Testament is
in Zech. 7:1-7; 8:19, from which it appears that during their captivity
the Jews observed four annual fasts.
(1.) The fast of the fourth month, kept on the seventeenth day of Tammuz,
the anniversary of the capture of Jerusalem by the Chaldeans; to commemorate
also the incident recorded Ex. 32:19. (Comp. Jer. 52:6, 7.)
(2.) The fast of the fifth month, kept on the ninth of Ab (comp. Num.
14:27), to commemorate the burning of the city and temple (Jer. 52:12,
(3.) The fast of the seventh month, kept on the third of Tisri (comp.
2 Kings 25), the anniversary of the murder of Gedaliah (Jer. 41:1, 2).
(4.) The fast of the tenth month (comp. Jer. 52:4; Ezek. 33:21; 2 Kings
25:1), to commemorate the beginning of the siege of the holy city by Nebuchadnezzar.
There was in addition to these the fast appointed by Esther (4:16).
Public national fasts on account of sin or to supplicate divine favour
were sometimes held. (1.) 1 Sam. 7:6; (2.) 2 Chr. 20:3; (3.) Jer. 36:6-10;
(4.) Neh. 9:1.
There were also local fasts. (1.) Judg. 20:26; (2.) 2 Sam. 1:12; (3.)
1 Sam. 31:13; (4.) 1 Kings 21:9-12; (5.) Ezra 8:21-23: (6.) Jonah 3:5-9.
There are many instances of private occasional fasting (1 Sam. 1:7:
20:34; 2 Sam. 3:35; 12:16; 1 Kings 21:27; Ezra 10:6; Neh. 1:4; Dan. 10:2,3).
Moses fasted forty days (Ex. 24:18; 34:28), and so also did Elijah (1
Kings 19:8). Our Lord fasted forty days in the wilderness (Matt. 4:2).
In the lapse of time the practice of fasting was lamentably abused (Isa.
58:4; Jer. 14:12; Zech. 7:5). Our Lord rebuked the Pharisees for their
hypocritical pretences in fasting (Matt. 6:16). He himself appointed no
fast. The early Christians, however, observed the ordinary fasts according
to the law of their fathers (Acts 13:3; 14:23; 2 Cor. 6:5).
Fat - (Heb. heleb) denotes the richest part
of the animal, or the fattest of the flock, in the account of Abel's sacrifice
(Gen. 4:4). It sometimes denotes the best of any production (Gen. 45:18;
Num. 18:12; Ps. 81:16; 147:47). The fat of sacrifices was to be burned (Lev.
3:9-11; 4:8; 7:3; 8:25; Num. 18:17. Comp. Ex. 29:13-22; Lev. 3:3-5).
It is used figuratively for a dull, stupid state of mind (Ps 17:10).
In Joel 2:24 the word is equivalent to "vat," a vessel. The hebrew word
here thus rendered is elsewhere rendered "wine-fat" and "press-fat" (Hag.
2:16; Isa. 63:2).
Father - a name applied (1) to any ancestor
(Deut. 1:11; 1 Kings 15:11; Matt. 3:9; 23:30, etc.); and (2) as a title
of respect to a chief, ruler, or elder, etc. (Judg. 17:10; 18:19; 1 Sam.
10:12; 2 Kings 2:12; Matt. 23:9, etc.). (3) The author or beginner of anything
is also so called; e.g., Jabal and Jubal (Gen. 4:20, 21; comp. Job 38:28).
Applied to God (Ex. 4:22; Deut. 32:6; 2 Sam. 7:14; Ps. 89:27, 28, etc.).
(1.) As denoting his covenant relation to the Jews (Jer. 31:9; Isa. 63:16;
64:8; John 8:41, etc.).
(2.) Believers are called God's "sons" (John 1:12; Rom. 8:16; Matt.
6:4, 8, 15, 18; 10:20, 29). They also call him "Father" (Rom. 1:7; 1 Cor.
1:3; 2 Cor. 1:2; Gal. 1:4)
Fathom - (Old A.S. faethm, "bosom," or the
outstretched arms), a span of six feet (Acts 27:28). Gr. orguia (from orego,
"I stretch"), the distance between the extremities of both arms fully stretched
Fatling - (1.) A fatted animal for slaughter
(2 Sam. 6:13; Isa. 11:6; Ezek. 39:18. Comp. Matt. 22:4, where the word used
in the original, sitistos, means literally "corn-fed;" i.e., installed,
fat). (2.) Ps. 66:15 (Heb. meah, meaning "marrowy," "fat," a species of
sheep). (3.) 1 Sam. 15:9 (Heb. mishneh, meaning "the second," and hence
probably "cattle of a second quality," or lambs of the second birth, i.e.,
autmnal lambs, and therfore of less value).
Fear of the Lord the - is in the Old Testament
used as a designation of true piety (Prov. 1:7; Job 28:28; Ps. 19:9). It
is a fear conjoined with love and hope, and is therefore not a slavish dread,
but rather filial reverence. (Comp. Deut. 32:6; Hos. 11:1; Isa. 1:2; 63:16;
64:8.) God is called "the Fear of Isaac" (Gen. 31:42, 53), i.e., the God
whom Isaac feared.
A holy fear is enjoined also in the New Testament as a preventive of
carelessness in religion, and as an incentive to penitence (Matt. 10:28;
2 Cor. 5:11; 7:1; Phil. 2:12; Eph. 5:21; Heb. 12:28, 29).
Feast - as a mark of hospitality (Gen. 19:3;
2 Sam. 3:20; 2 Kings 6:23); on occasions of domestic joy (Luke 15:23; Gen.
21:8); on birthdays (Gen. 40:20; Job 1:4; Matt. 14:6); and on the occasion
of a marriage (Judg. 14:10; Gen. 29:22).
Feasting was a part of the observances connected with the offering up
of sacrifices (Deut. 12:6, 7; 1 Sam. 9:19; 16:3, 5), and with the annual
festivals (Deut. 16:11). "It was one of the designs of the greater solemnities,
which required the attendance of the people at the sacred tent, that the
oneness of the nation might be maintained and cemented together, by statedly
congregating in one place, and with one soul taking part in the same religious
services. But that oneness was primarily and chiefly a religious and not
merely a political one; the people were not merely to meet as among themselves,
but with Jehovah, and to present themselves before him as one body; the
meeting was in its own nature a binding of themselves in fellowship with
Jehovah; so that it was not politics and commerce that had here to do,
but the soul of the Mosaic dispensation, the foundation of the religious
and political existence of Israel, the covenant with Jehovah. To keep
the people's consciousness alive to this, to revive, strengthen, and perpetuate
it, nothing could be so well adapated as these annual feasts." (See FESTIVALS.)
Felix - happy, the Roman procurator of Judea
before whom Paul "reasoned" (Acts 24:25). He appears to have expected a
bribe from Paul, and therefore had several interviews with him. The "worthy
deeds" referred to in 24:2 was his clearing the country of banditti and
At the end of a two years' term, Porcius Festus was appointed in the
room of Felix (A.D. 60), who proceeded to Rome, and was there accused
of cruelty and malversation of office by the Jews of Caesarea. The accusation
was rendered nugatory by the influence of his brother Pallas with Nero.
(See Josephus, Ant. xx. 8, 9.)
Drusilla, the daughter of Herod Agrippa, having been induced by Felix
to desert her husband, the king of Emesa, became his adulterous companion.
She was seated beside him when Paul "reasoned" before the judge. When
Felix gave place to Festus, being "willing to do the Jews a pleasure,"
he left Paul bound.
Fellowship - (1.) With God, consisting in
the knowledge of his will (Job 22:21; John 17:3); agreement with his designs
(Amos 3:2); mutual affection (Rom. 8: 38, 39); enjoyment of his presence
(Ps. 4:6); conformity to his image (1 John 2:6; 1:6); and participation
of his felicity (1 John 1:3, 4; Eph. 3:14-21).
(2.) Of saints with one another, in duties (Rom. 12:5; 1 Cor. 12:1;
1 Thess. 5:17, 18); in ordinances (Heb. 10:25; Acts 2:46); in grace, love,
joy, etc. (Mal. 3:16; 2 Cor. 8:4); mutual interest, spiritual and temporal
(Rom. 12:4, 13; Heb. 13:16); in sufferings (Rom. 15:1, 2; Gal. 6:1, 2;
Rom. 12:15; and in glory (Rev. 7:9).
Fence - (Heb. gader), Num. 22:24 (R.V.).
Fences were constructions of unmortared stones, to protect gardens, vineyards,
sheepfolds, etc. From various causes they were apt to bulge out and fall
(Ps. 62:3). In Ps. 80:12, R.V. (see Isa. 5:5), the psalmist says, "Why hast
thou broken down her fences?" Serpents delight to lurk in the crevices of
such fences (Eccl. 10:8; comp. Amos 5:19).
Fenced cities - There were in Palestine
(1) cities, (2) unwalled villages, and (3) villages with castles or towers
(1 Chr. 27:25). Cities, so called, had walls, and were thus fenced. The
fortifications consisted of one or two walls, on which were towers or parapets
at regular intervals (2 Chr. 32:5; Jer. 31:38). Around ancient Jerusalem
were three walls, on one of which were ninety towers, on the second fourteen,
and on the third sixty. The tower of Hananeel, near the north-east corner
of the city wall, is frequently referred to (Neh. 3:1; 12:39; Zech. 14:10).
The gateways of such cities were also fortified (Neh. 2:8; 3:3, 6; Judg.
16:2, 3; 1 Sam. 23:7).
The Hebrews found many fenced cities when they entered the Promised
Land (Num. 13:28; 32:17, 34-42; Josh. 11:12, 13; Judg. 1:27-33), and we
may estimate the strength of some of these cities from the fact that they
were long held in possession by the Canaanites. The Jebusites, e.g., were
enabled to hold possession of Jerusalem till the time of David (2 Sam.
5:6, 7; 1 Chr. 11:5).
Several of the kings of Israel and Judah distinguished themselves as
fortifiers or "builders" of cities.
Ferret - Lev. 11:30 (R.V., "gecko"), one
of the unclean creeping things. It was perhaps the Lacerta gecko which was
intended by the Hebrew word (anakah, a cry, "mourning," the creature which
groans) here used, i.e., the "fan-footed" lizard, the gecko which makes
a mournful wail. The LXX. translate it by a word meaning "shrew-mouse,"
of which there are three species in Palestine. The Rabbinical writers regard
it as the hedgehog. The translation of the Revised Version is to be preferred.
Ferry boat - (2 Sam. 19:18), some kind of
boat for crossing the river which the men of Judah placed at the service
of the king. Floats or rafts for this purpose were in use from remote times
Festivals, Religious - There were daily
(Lev. 23), weekly, monthly, and yearly festivals, and great stress was laid
on the regular observance of them in every particular (Num. 28:1-8; Ex.
29:38-42; Lev. 6:8-23; Ex. 30:7-9; 27:20).
(1.) The septenary festivals were,
(a) The weekly Sabbath (Lev. 23:1-3; Ex. 19:3-30; 20:8-11; 31:12, etc.).
(b) The seventh new moon, or the feast of Trumpets (Num. 28:11-15; 29:1-6).
(c) The Sabbatical year (Ex. 23:10, 11; Lev. 25:2-7).
(d) The year of jubilee (Lev. 23-35; 25: 8-16; 27:16-25).
(2.) The great feasts were,
(a) The Passover. (b) The feast of Pentecost, or of weeks. (c) The feast
of Tabernacles, or of ingathering.
On each of these occasions every male Israelite was commanded "to appear
before the Lord" (Deut. 27:7; Neh. 8:9-12). The attendance of women was
voluntary. (Comp. Luke 2:41; 1 Sam. 1:7; 2:19.) The promise that God would
protect their homes (Ex. 34:23, 24) while all the males were absent in
Jerusalem at these feasts was always fulfilled. "During the whole period
between Moses and Christ we never read of an enemy invading the land at
the time of the three festivals. The first instance on record is thirty-three
years after they had withdrawn from themselves the divine protection by
imbruing their hands in the Saviour's blood, when Cestius, the Roman general,
slew fifty of the people of Lydda while all the rest had gone up to the
feast of Tabernacles, A.D. 66."
These festivals, besides their religious purpose, had an important bearing
on the maintenance among the people of the feeling of a national unity.
The times fixed for their observance were arranged so as to interfere
as little as possible with the industry of the people. The Passover was
kept just before the harvest commenced, Pentecost at the conclusion of
the corn harvest and before the vintage, the feast of Tabernacles after
all the fruits of the ground had been gathered in.
(3.) The Day of Atonement, the tenth day of the seventh month (Lev.
16:1, 34; 23:26-32; Num. 29:7-11). (See ATONEMENT, DAY OF.)
Of the post-Exilian festivals reference is made to the feast of Dedication
(John 10:22). This feast was appointed by Judas Maccabaeus in commemoration
of the purification of the temple after it had been polluted by Antiochus
Epiphanes. The "feast of Purim" (q.v.), Esther 9:24-32, was also instituted
after the Exile. (Cf. John 5:1.)
Festus, Porcius - the successor of Felix
(A.D. 60) as procurator of Judea (Acts 24:27). A few weeks after he had
entered on his office the case of Paul, then a prisoner at Caesarea, was
reported to him. The "next day," after he had gone down to Caesarea, he
heard Paul defend himself in the presence of Herod Agrippa II. and his
sister Bernice, and not finding in him anything worthy of death or of
bonds, would have set him free had he not appealed unto Caesar (Acts 25:11,
12). In consequence of this appeal Paul was sent to Rome. Festus, after
being in office less than two years, died in Judea. (See AGRIPPA.)
Fever - (Deut. 28:22; Matt. 8:14; Mark 1:30;
John 4:52; Acts 28:8), a burning heat, as the word so rendered denotes,
which attends all febrile attacks. In all Eastern countries such diseases
are very common. Peter's wife's mother is said to have suffered from a "great
fever" (Luke 4:38), an instance of Luke's professional exactitude in describing
disease. He adopts here the technical medical distinction, as in those times
fevers were divided into the "great" and the "less."
Field - (Heb. sadeh), a cultivated field,
but unenclosed. It is applied to any cultivated ground or pasture (Gen.
29:2; 31:4; 34:7), or tillage (Gen. 37:7; 47:24). It is also applied to
woodland (Ps. 132:6) or mountain top (Judg. 9:32, 36; 2 Sam. 1:21). It denotes
sometimes a cultivated region as opposed to the wilderness (Gen. 33:19;
36:35). Unwalled villages or scattered houses are spoken of as "in the fields"
(Deut. 28:3, 16; Lev. 25:31; Mark 6:36, 56). The "open field" is a place
remote from a house (Gen. 4:8; Lev. 14:7, 53; 17:5). Cultivated land of
any extent was called a field (Gen. 23:13, 17; 41:8; Lev. 27:16; Ruth 4:5;
Fig - First mentioned in Gen. 3:7. The fig-tree
is mentioned (Deut. 8:8) as one of the valuable products of Palestine. It
was a sign of peace and prosperity (1 Kings 4:25; Micah 4:4; Zech. 3:10).
Figs were used medicinally (2 Kings 20:7), and pressed together and formed
into "cakes" as articles of diet (1 Sam. 30:12; Jer. 24:2).
Our Lord's cursing the fig-tree near Bethany (Mark 11:13) has occasioned
much perplexity from the circumstance, as mentioned by the evangelist,
that "the time of figs was not yet." The explanation of the words, however,
lies in the simple fact that the fruit of the fig-tree appears before
the leaves, and hence that if the tree produced leaves it ought also to
have had fruit. It ought to have had fruit if it had been true to its
"pretensions," in showing its leaves at this particular season. "This
tree, so to speak, vaunted itself to be in advance of all the other trees,
challenged the passer-by that he should come and refresh himself with
its fruit. Yet when the Lord accepted its challenge and drew near, it
proved to be but as the others, without fruit as they; for indeed, as
the evangelist observes, the time of figs had not yet arrived. Its fault,
if one may use the word, lay in its pretensions, in its making a show
to run before the rest when it did not so indeed" (Trench, Miracles).
The fig-tree of Palestine (Ficus carica) produces two and sometimes
three crops of figs in a year, (1) the bikkurah, or "early-ripe fig" (Micah
7:1; Isa. 28:4; Hos. 9:10, R.V.), which is ripe about the end of June,
dropping off as soon as it is ripe (Nah. 3:12); (2) the kermus, or "summer
fig," then begins to be formed, and is ripe about August; and (3) the
pag (plural "green figs," Cant. 2:13; Gr. olynthos, Rev. 6:13, "the untimely
fig"), or "winter fig," which ripens in sheltered spots in spring.
Fillets - Heb. hashukum, plur., joinings
(Ex. 27:17; 38:17, 28), the rods by which the tops of the columns around
the tabernacle court were joined together, and from which the curtains were
suspended (Ex. 27:10, 11; 36:38).
In Jer. 52:21 the rendering of a different word, hut, meaning
a "thread," and designating a measuring-line of 12 cubits in length for
the circumference of the copper pillars of Solomon's temple.
Finer - a worker in silver and gold (Prov.
25:4). In Judg. 17:4 the word (tsoreph) is rendered "founder," and in Isa.
Fining pot - a crucible, melting-pot (Prov.
Fir - the uniform rendering in the Authorized
Version (marg. R.V., "cypress") of berosh (2 Sam. 6:5; 1 Kings 5:8,
10; 6:15, 34; 9:11, etc.), a lofty tree (Isa. 55:13) growing on Lebanon
(37:24). Its wood was used in making musical instruments and doors of houses,
and for ceilings (2 Chr. 3:5), the decks of ships (Ezek. 27:5), floorings
and spear-shafts (Nah. 2:3, R.V.). The true fir (abies) is not found in
Palestine, but the pine tree, of which there are four species, is common.
The precise kind of tree meant by the "green fir tree" (Hos. 14:8) is
uncertain. Some regard it as the sherbin tree, a cypress resembling the
cedar; others, the Aleppo or maritime pine (Pinus halepensis), which resembles
the Scotch fir; while others think that the "stone-pine" (Pinus pinea)
is probably meant. (See PINE.)
Fire - (1.) For sacred purposes. The sacrifices
were consumed by fire (Gen. 8:20). The ever-burning fire on the altar was
first kindled from heaven (Lev. 6:9, 13; 9:24), and afterwards rekindled
at the dedication of Solomon's temple (2 Chr. 7:1, 3). The expressions "fire
from heaven" and "fire of the Lord" generally denote lightning, but sometimes
also the fire of the altar was so called (Ex. 29:18; Lev. 1:9; 2:3; 3:5,
Fire for a sacred purpose obtained otherwise than from the altar was
called "strange fire" (Lev. 10:1, 2; Num. 3:4).
The victims slain for sin offerings were afterwards consumed by fire
outside the camp (Lev. 4:12, 21; 6:30; 16:27; Heb. 13:11).
(2.) For domestic purposes, such as baking, cooking, warmth, etc. (Jer.
36:22; Mark 14:54; John 18:18). But on Sabbath no fire for any domestic
purpose was to be kindled (Ex. 35:3; Num. 15:32-36).
(3.) Punishment of death by fire was inflicted on such as were guilty
of certain forms of unchastity and incest (Lev. 20:14; 21:9). The burning
of captives in war was not unknown among the Jews (2 Sam. 12:31; Jer.
29:22). The bodies of infamous persons who were executed were also sometimes
burned (Josh. 7:25; 2 Kings 23:16).
(4.) In war, fire was used in the destruction of cities, as Jericho
(Josh. 6:24), Ai (8:19), Hazor (11:11), Laish (Judg. 18:27), etc. The
war-chariots of the Canaanites were burnt (Josh. 11:6, 9, 13). The Israelites
burned the images (2 Kings 10:26; R.V., "pillars") of the house of Baal.
These objects of worship seem to have been of the nature of obelisks,
and were sometimes evidently made of wood.
Torches were sometimes carried by the soldiers in battle (Judg. 7:16).
(5.) Figuratively, fire is a symbol of Jehovah's presence and the instrument
of his power (Ex. 14:19; Num. 11:1, 3; Judg. 13:20; 1 Kings 18:38; 2 Kings
1:10, 12; 2:11; Isa. 6:4; Ezek. 1:4; Rev. 1:14, etc.).
God's word is also likened unto fire (Jer. 23:29). It is referred to
as an emblem of severe trials or misfortunes (Zech. 12:6; Luke 12:49;
1 Cor. 3:13, 15; 1 Pet. 1:7), and of eternal punishment (Matt. 5:22; Mark
9:44; Rev. 14:10; 21:8).
The influence of the Holy Ghost is likened unto fire (Matt. 3:11). His
descent was denoted by the appearance of tongues as of fire (Acts 2:3).
Firebrand - Isa. 7:4, Amos 4:11, Zech. 3:2,
denotes the burnt end of a stick (Heb. 'ud); in Judg. 15:4, a lamp or torch,
a flambeau (Heb. lappid); in Prov. 26:18 (comp. Eph. 6:16), burning darts
or arrows (Heb. zikkim).
Firepan - (Ex. 27:3; 38:3), one of the vessels
of the temple service (rendered "snuff-dish" Ex. 25:38; 37:23; and "censer"
Lev. 10:1; 16:12). It was probably a metallic cinder-basin used for the
purpose of carrying live coal for burning incense, and of carrying away
the snuff in trimming the lamps.
Firkin - Used only in John 2:6; the Attic
amphora, equivalent to the Hebrew bath (q.v.), a measure for liquids containing
about 8 7/8 gallons.
Firmament - from the Vulgate firmamentum,
which is used as the translation of the Hebrew raki'a. This word
means simply "expansion." It denotes the space or expanse like an arch appearing
immediately above us. They who rendered raki'a by firmamentum regarded
it as a solid body. The language of Scripture is not scientific but popular,
and hence we read of the sun rising and setting, and also here the use of
this particular word. It is plain that it was used to denote solidity as
well as expansion. It formed a division between the waters above and the
waters below (Gen. 1:7). The raki'a supported the upper reservoir
(Ps. 148:4). It was the support also of the heavenly bodies (Gen. 1:14),
and is spoken of as having "windows" and "doors" (Gen. 7:11; Isa. 24:18;
Mal. 3:10) through which the rain and snow might descend.
First-born - sons enjoyed certain special
privileges (Deut. 21:17; Gen. 25:23, 31, 34; 49:3; 1 Chr. 5:1; Heb. 12:16;
Ps. 89:27). (See BIRTHRIGHT.)
The "first-born of the poor" signifies the most miserable of the poor
(Isa. 14:30). The "church of the first-born" signifies the church of the
The destruction of the first-born was the last of the ten plagues inflicted
on the Egyptians (Ex. 11:1-8; 12:29, 30).
Menephtah is probably the Pharaoh whose first-born was slain. His son
did not succeed or survive his father, but died early. The son's tomb
has been found at Thebes unfinished, showing it was needed earlier than
was expected. Some of the records on the tomb are as follows: "The son
whom Menephtah loves; who draws towards him his father's heart, the singer,
the prince of archers, who governed Egypt on behalf of his father. Dead."
First-born, Redemption of - From the beginning
the office of the priesthood in each family belonged to the eldest son.
But when the extensive plan of sacrificial worship was introduced, requiring
a company of men to be exclusively devoted to this ministry, the primitive
office of the first-born was superseded by that of the Levites (Num. 3:11-13),
and it was ordained that the first-born of man and of unclean animals should
henceforth be redeemed (18:15).
The laws concerning this redemption of the first-born of man are recorded
in Ex. 13:12-15; 22:29; 34:20; Num. 3:45; 8:17; 18:16; Lev. 12:2, 4.
The first-born male of every clean animal was to be given up to the
priest for sacrifice (Deut. 12:6; Ex. 13:12; 34:20; Num. 18:15-17).
But the first-born of unclean animals was either to be redeemed or sold
and the price given to the priest (Lev. 27:11-13, 27). The first-born
of an ass, if not redeemed, was to be put to death (Ex. 13:13; 34:20).
First-born, Sanctification of the - A peculiar
sanctity was attached to the first-born both of man and of cattle. God claimed
that the first-born males of man and of animals should be consecrated to
him, the one as a priest (Ex. 19:22, 24), representing the family to which
he belonged, and the other to be offered up in sacrifice (Gen. 4:4).
First-fruits - The first-fruits of the ground
were offered unto God just as the first-born of man and animals.
The law required, (1.) That on the morrow after the Passover Sabbath
a sheaf of new corn should be waved by the priest before the altar (Lev.
23:5, 6, 10, 12; 2:12).
(2.) That at the feast of Pentecost two loaves of leavened bread, made
from the new flour, were to be waved in like manner (Lev. 23:15, 17; Num.
(3.) The feast of Tabernacles was an acknowledgement that the fruits
of the harvest were from the Lord (Ex. 23:16; 34:22).
(4.) Every individual, besides, was required to consecrate to God a
portion of the first-fruits of the land (Ex. 22:29; 23:19; 34:26; Num.
(5.) The law enjoined that no fruit was to be gathered from newly-planted
fruit-trees for the first three years, and that the first-fruits of the
fourth year were to be consecrated to the Lord (Lev. 19:23-25). Jeremiah
(2:3) alludes to the ordinance of "first-fruits," and hence he must have
been acquainted with the books of Exodus, Leviticus, and Numbers, where
the laws regarding it are recorded.
Fish - called dag by the Hebrews,
a word denoting great fecundity (Gen. 9:2; Num. 11:22; Jonah 2:1, 10). No
fish is mentioned by name either in the Old or in the New Testament. Fish
abounded in the Mediterranean and in the lakes of the Jordan, so that the
Hebrews were no doubt acquainted with many species. Two of the villages
on the shores of the Sea of Galilee derived their names from their fisheries,
Bethsaida (the "house of fish") on the east and on the west. There is probably
no other sheet of water in the world of equal dimensions that contains such
a variety and profusion of fish. About thirty-seven different kinds have
been found. Some of the fishes are of a European type, such as the roach,
the barbel, and the blenny; others are markedly African and tropical, such
as the eel-like silurus. There was a regular fish-market apparently in Jerusalem
(2 Chr. 33:14; Neh. 3:3; 12:39; Zeph. 1:10), as there was a fish-gate which
was probably contiguous to it.
Sidon is the oldest fishing establishment known in history.
Fisher - Besides its literal sense (Luke
5:2), this word is also applied by our Lord to his disciples in a figurative
sense (Matt. 4:19; Mark 1:17).
Fish-hooks - were used for catching fish
(Amos 4:2; comp. Isa. 37:29; Jer. 16:16; Ezek. 29:4; Job. 41:1, 2; Matt.
Fishing, the art of - was prosecuted with
great industry in the waters of Palestine. It was from the fishing-nets
that Jesus called his disciples (Mark 1:16-20), and it was in a fishing-boat
he rebuked the winds and the waves (Matt. 8:26) and delivered that remarkable
series of prophecies recorded in Matt. 13. He twice miraculously fed multitudes
with fish and bread (Matt. 14:19; 15:36). It was in the mouth of a fish
that the tribute-money was found (Matt. 17:27). And he "ate a piece of broiled
fish" with his disciples after his resurrection (Luke 24:42, 43; comp. Acts
1:3). At the Sea of Tiberias (John 21:1-14), in obedience to his direction,
the disciples cast their net "on the right side of the ship," and enclosed
so many that "they were not able to draw it for the multitude of fishes."
Two kinds of fishing-nets are mentioned in the New Testament:
(1.) The casting-net (Matt. 4:18; Mark 1:16).
(2.) The drag-net or seine (Matt. 13:48).
Fish were also caught by the fishing-hook (Matt. 17:27). (See NET.)
Fish-pools - (Cant. 7:4) should be simply
"pools," as in the Revised Version. The reservoirs near Heshbon (q.v.) were
probably stocked with fish (2 Sam. 2:13; 4:12; Isa. 7:3; 22:9, 11).
Fitches - (Isa. 28:25, 27), the rendering
of the Hebrew ketsah, "without doubt the Nigella sativa, a small
annual of the order Ranunculacece, which grows wild in the Mediterranean
countries, and is cultivated in Egypt and Syria for its seed." It is rendered
in margin of the Revised Version "black cummin." The seeds are used as a
In Ezek. 4:9 this word is the rendering of the Hebrew kussemeth
(incorrectly rendered "rye" in the Authorized Version of Ex. 9:32 and
Isa. 28:25, but "spelt" in the Revised Version). The reading "fitches"
here is an error; it should be "spelt."
Flag - (Heb., or rather Egyptian, ahu, Job
8:11), rendered "meadow" in Gen. 41:2, 18; probably the Cyperus esculentus,
a species of rush eaten by cattle, the Nile reed. It also grows in Palestine.
In Ex. 2:3, 5, Isa. 19:6, it is the rendering of the Hebrew suph_,
a word which occurs frequently in connection with _yam; as yam
suph, to denote the "Red Sea" (q.v.) or the sea of weeds (as this
word is rendered, Jonah 2:5). It denotes some kind of sedge or reed which
grows in marshy places. (See PAPER, REED.)
Flagon - Heb. ashishah, (2 Sam. 6:19; 1
Chr. 16:3; Cant. 2:5; Hos. 3:1), meaning properly "a cake of pressed raisins."
"Flagons of wine" of the Authorized Version should be, as in the Revised
Version, "cakes of raisins" in all these passages. In Isa. 22:24 it is the
rendering of the Hebrew nebel, which properly means a bottle or vessel
of skin. (Comp. 1 Sam. 1:24; 10:3; 25:18; 2 Sam. 16:1, where the same Hebrew
word is used.)
Flame of fire - is the chosen symbol of
the holiness of God (Ex. 3:2; Rev. 2:18), as indicating "the intense, all-consuming
operation of his holiness in relation to sin."
Flax - (Heb. pishtah, i.e., "peeled",
in allusion to the fact that the stalks of flax when dried were first
split or peeled before being steeped in water for the purpose of destroying
the pulp). This plant was cultivated from earliest times. The flax of
Egypt was destroyed by the plague of hail when it "was bolled", i.e.,
was forming pods for seed (Ex. 9:31). It was extensively cultivated both
in Egypt and Palestine. Reference is made in Josh. 2:6 to the custom of
drying flax-stalks by exposing them to the sun on the flat roofs of houses.
It was much used in forming articles of clothing such as girdles, also
cords and bands (Lev. 13:48, 52, 59; Deut. 22:11). (See LINEN.)
Flea - David at the cave of Adullam thus
addressed his persecutor Saul (1 Sam. 24:14): "After whom is the king of
Israel come out? after whom dost thou pursue? after a dead dog, after a
flea?" He thus speaks of himself as the poor, contemptible object of the
monarch's pursuit, a "worthy object truly for an expedition of the king
of Israel with his picked troops!" This insect is in Eastern language the
popular emblem of insignificance. In 1 Sam. 26:20 the LXX. read "come out
to seek my life" instead of "to seek a flea."
Fleece - the wool of a sheep, whether shorn
off or still attached to the skin (Deut. 18:4; Job 31:20). The miracle of
Gideon's fleece (Judg. 6:37-40) consisted in the dew having fallen at one
time on the fleece without any on the floor, and at another time in the
fleece remaining dry while the ground was wet with dew.
Flesh - in the Old Testament denotes (1)
a particular part of the body of man and animals (Gen. 2:21; 41:2; Ps. 102:5,
marg.); (2) the whole body (Ps. 16:9); (3) all living things having flesh,
and particularly humanity as a whole (Gen. 6:12, 13); (4) mutability and
weakness (2 Chr. 32:8; comp. Isa. 31:3; Ps. 78:39). As suggesting the idea
of softness it is used in the expression "heart of flesh" (Ezek. 11:19).
The expression "my flesh and bone" (Judg. 9:2; Isa. 58:7) denotes relationship.
In the New Testament, besides these it is also used to denote the sinful
element of human nature as opposed to the "Spirit" (Rom. 6:19; Matt. 16:17).
Being "in the flesh" means being unrenewed (Rom. 7:5; 8:8, 9), and to
live "according to the flesh" is to live and act sinfully (Rom. 8:4, 5,
This word also denotes the human nature of Christ (John 1:14, "The Word
was made flesh." Comp. also 1 Tim. 3:16; Rom. 1:3).
Flesh-hook - a many-pronged fork used in
the sacrificial services (1 Sam. 2:13, 14; Ex. 27:3; 38:3) by the priest
in drawing away the flesh. The fat of the sacrifice, together with the breast
and shoulder (Lev. 7:29-34), were presented by the worshipper to the priest.
The fat was burned on the alter (3:3-5), and the breast and shoulder became
the portion of the priests. But Hophni and Phinehas, not content with this,
sent a servant to seize with a flesh-hook a further portion.
Flint - abounds in all the plains and valleys
of the wilderness of the forty years' wanderings. In Isa. 50:7 and Ezek.
3:9 the expressions, where the word is used, means that the "Messiah would
be firm and resolute amidst all contempt and scorn which he would meet;
that he had made up his mind to endure it, and would not shrink from any
kind or degree of suffering which would be necessary to accomplish the great
work in which he was engaged." (Comp. Ezek. 3:8, 9.) The words "like a flint"
are used with reference to the hoofs of horses (Isa. 5:28).
Flood - an event recorded in Gen. 7
and 8. (See DELUGE.) In Josh. 24:2, 3, 14, 15, the word "flood" (R.V.,
"river") means the river Euphrates. In Ps. 66:6, this word refers to the
Flour - Grain reduced to the form of meal
is spoken of in the time of Abraham (Gen. 18:6). As baking was a daily necessity,
grain was also ground daily at the mills (Jer. 25:10). The flour mingled
with water was kneaded in kneading-troughs, and sometimes leaven (Ex. 12:34)
was added and sometimes omitted (Gen. 19:3). The dough was then formed into
thin cakes nine or ten inches in diameter and baked in the oven.
Fine flour was offered by the poor as a sin-offering (Lev. 5:11-13),
and also in connection with other sacrifices (Num. 15:3-12; 28:7-29).
Flowers - Very few species of flowers are
mentioned in the Bible although they abounded in Palestine. It has been
calculated that in Western Syria and Palestine from two thousand to two
thousand five hundred plants are found, of which about five hundred probably
are British wild-flowers. Their beauty is often alluded to (Cant. 2:12;
Matt. 6:28). They are referred to as affording an emblem of the transitory
nature of human life (Job 14:2; Ps. 103:15; Isa. 28:1; 40:6; James 1:10).
Gardens containing flowers and fragrant herbs are spoken of (Cant. 4:16;
Flute - a musical instrument, probably composed
of a number of pipes, mentioned Dan. 3:5, 7, 10, 15.
In Matt. 9:23, 24, notice is taken of players on the flute, here called
"minstrels" (but in R.V. "flute-players").
Flutes were in common use among the ancient Egyptians.
Fly - Heb. zebub, (Eccl. 10:1; Isa. 7:18).
This fly was so grievous a pest that the Phoenicians invoked against it
the aid of their god Baal-zebub (q.v.). The prophet Isaiah (7:18) alludes
to some poisonous fly which was believed to be found on the confines of
Egypt, and which would be called by the Lord. Poisonous flies exist in many
parts of Africa, for instance, the different kinds of tsetse.
Heb. 'arob, the name given to the insects sent as a plague on the land
of Egypt (Ex. 8:21-31; Ps. 78:45; 105:31). The LXX. render this by a word
which means the "dog-fly," the cynomuia. The Jewish commentators regarded
the Hebrew word here as connected with the word 'arab, which means
"mingled;" and they accordingly supposed the plague to consist of a mixed
multitude of animals, beasts, reptiles, and insects. But there is no doubt
that "the 'arab" denotes a single definite species. Some interpreters
regard it as the Blatta orientalis, the cockroach, a species of beetle.
These insects "inflict very painful bites with their jaws; gnaw and destroy
clothes, household furniture, leather, and articles of every kind, and
either consume or render unavailable all eatables."
Foam - (Hos. 10:7), the rendering of ketseph,
which properly means twigs or splinters (as rendered in the LXX. and marg.
R.V.). The expression in Hosea may therefore be read, "as a chip on the
face of the water," denoting the helplessness of the piece of wood as compared
with the irresistable current.
Fodder - Heb. belil, (Job 6:5), meaning
properly a mixture or medley (Lat. farrago), "made up of various kinds of
grain, as wheat, barley, vetches, and the like, all mixed together, and
then sown or given to cattle" (Job 24:6, A.V. "corn," R.V. "provender;"
Isa. 30:24, provender").
Fold - an enclosure for flocks to rest together
(Isa. 13:20). Sheep-folds are mentioned Num. 32:16, 24, 36; 2 Sam. 7:8;
Zeph. 2:6; John 10:1, etc. It was prophesied of the cities of Ammon (Ezek.
25:5), Aroer (Isa. 17:2), and Judaea, that they would be folds or couching-places
for flocks. "Among the pots," of the Authorized Version (Ps. 68:13), is
rightly in the Revised Version, "among the sheepfolds."
Food - Originally the Creator granted the
use of the vegetable world for food to man (Gen. 1:29), with the exception
mentioned (2:17). The use of animal food was probably not unknown to the
antediluvians. There is, however, a distinct law on the subject given to
Noah after the Deluge (Gen. 9:2-5). Various articles of food used in the
patriarchal age are mentioned in Gen. 18:6-8; 25:34; 27:3, 4; 43:11. Regarding
the food of the Israelites in Egypt, see Ex. 16:3; Num. 11:5. In the wilderness
their ordinary food was miraculously supplied in the manna. They had also
quails (Ex. 16:11-13; Num. 11:31).
In the law of Moses there are special regulations as to the animals
to be used for food (Lev. 11; Deut. 14:3-21). The Jews were also forbidden
to use as food anything that had been consecrated to idols (Ex. 34:15),
or animals that had died of disease or had been torn by wild beasts (Ex.
22:31; Lev. 22:8). (See also for other restrictions Ex. 23:19; 29:13-22;
Lev. 3:4-9; 9:18, 19; 22:8; Deut. 14:21.) But beyond these restrictions
they had a large grant from God (Deut. 14:26; 32:13, 14).
Food was prepared for use in various ways. The cereals were sometimes
eaten without any preparation (Lev. 23:14; Deut. 23:25; 2 Kings 4:42).
Vegetables were cooked by boiling (Gen. 25:30, 34; 2 Kings 4:38, 39),
and thus also other articles of food were prepared for use (Gen. 27:4;
Prov. 23:3; Ezek. 24:10; Luke 24:42; John 21:9). Food was also prepared
by roasting (Ex. 12:8; Lev. 2:14). (See COOK.)
Footstool - connected with a throne (2 Chr.
9:18). Jehovah symbolically dwelt in the holy place between the cherubim
above the ark of the covenant. The ark was his footstool (1 Chr. 28:2; Ps.
99:5; 132:7). And as heaven is God's throne, so the earth is his footstool
(Ps. 110:1; Isa. 66:1; Matt. 5:35).
Forces - of the Gentiles (Isa. 60:5, 11;
R.V., "the wealth of the nations") denotes the wealth of the heathen. The
whole passage means that the wealth of the Gentile world should be consecrated
to the service of the church.
Ford - Mention is frequently made of the
fords of the Jordan (Josh. 2:7; Judg. 3:28; 12:5, 6), which must have been
very numerous; about fifty perhaps. The most notable was that of Bethabara.
Mention is also made of the ford of the Jabbok (Gen. 32:22), and of the
fords of Arnon (Isa. 16:2) and of the Euphrates (Jer. 51:32).
Forehead - The practice common among Oriental
nations of colouring the forehead or impressing on it some distinctive mark
as a sign of devotion to some deity is alluded to in Rev. 13:16, 17; 14:9;
The "jewel on thy forehead" mentioned in Ezek. 16:12 (R.V., "a ring
upon thy nose") was in all probability the "nose-ring" (Isa. 3:21).
In Ezek. 3:7 the word "impudent" is rightly rendered in the Revised
Version "an hard forehead." (See also ver. 8, 9.)
Foreigner - a Gentile. Such as resided among
the Hebrews were required by the law to be treated with kindness (Ex. 22:21;
23:9; Lev. 19:33, 34; 23:22; Deut. 14:28; 16:10, 11; 24:19). They enjoyed
in many things equal rights with the native-born residents (Ex. 12:49; Lev.
24:22; Num. 15:15; 35:15), but were not allowed to do anything which was
an abomination according to the Jewish law (Ex. 20:10; Lev. 17:15,16; 18:26;
20:2; 24:16, etc.).
Foreknowledge of God - Acts 2:23; Rom. 8:29;
11:2; 1 Pet. 1:2), one of those high attributes essentially appertaining
to him the full import of which we cannot comprehend. In the most absolute
sense his knowledge is infinite (1 Sam. 23:9-13; Jer. 38:17-23; 42:9-22,
Matt. 11:21, 23; Acts 15:18).
Forerunner - John the Baptist went before
our Lord in this character (Mark 1:2, 3). Christ so called (Heb. 6:20) as
entering before his people into the holy place as their head and guide.
Forest - Heb. ya'ar, meaning a dense wood,
from its luxuriance. Thus all the great primeval forests of Syria (Eccl.
2:6; Isa. 44:14; Jer. 5:6; Micah 5:8). The most extensive was the trans-Jordanic
forest of Ephraim (2 Sam. 18:6, 8; Josh. 17:15, 18), which is probably the
same as the wood of Ephratah (Ps. 132:6), some part of the great forest
of Gilead. It was in this forest that Absalom was slain by Joab. David withdrew
to the forest of Hareth in the mountains of Judah to avoid the fury of Saul
(1 Sam. 22:5). We read also of the forest of Bethel (2 Kings 2:23, 24),
and of that which the Israelites passed in their pursuit of the Philistines
(1 Sam. 14:25), and of the forest of the cedars of Lebanon (1 Kings 4:33;
2 Kings 19:23; Hos. 14:5, 6).
"The house of the forest of Lebanon (1 Kings 7:2; 10:17; 2 Chr. 9:16)
was probably Solomon's armoury, and was so called because the wood of
its many pillars came from Lebanon, and they had the appearance of a forest.
Heb. horesh, denoting a thicket of trees, underwood, jungle, bushes,
or trees entangled, and therefore affording a safe hiding-place. place.
This word is rendered "forest" only in 2 Chr. 27:4. It is also rendered
"wood", the "wood" in the "wilderness of Ziph," in which david concealed
himself (1 Sam. 23:15), which lay south-east of Hebron. In Isa. 17:19
this word is in Authorized Version rendered incorrectly "bough."
Heb. pardes, meaning an enclosed garden or plantation. Asaph is (Neh.
2:8) called the "keeper of the king's forest." The same Hebrew word is
used Eccl. 2:5, where it is rendered in the plural "orchards" (R.V., "parks"),
and Cant. 4: 13, rendered "orchard" (R.V. marg., "a paradise").
"The forest of the vintage" (Zech. 11:2, "inaccessible forest," or R.V.
"strong forest") is probably a figurative allusion to Jerusalem, or the
verse may simply point to the devastation of the region referred to.
The forest is an image of unfruitfulness as contrasted with a cultivated
field (Isa. 29:17; 32:15; Jer. 26:18; Hos. 2:12). Isaiah (10:19, 33, 34)
likens the Assyrian host under Sennacherib (q.v.) to the trees of some
huge forest, to be suddenly cut down by an unseen stroke.
Forgiveness of sin - one of the constituent
parts of justification. In pardoning sin, God absolves the sinner from
the condemnation of the law, and that on account of the work of Christ,
i.e., he removes the guilt of sin, or the sinner's actual liability to
eternal wrath on account of it. All sins are forgiven freely (Acts 5:31;
13:38; 1 John 1:6-9). The sinner is by this act of grace for ever freed
from the guilt and penalty of his sins. This is the peculiar prerogative
of God (Ps. 130:4; Mark 2:5). It is offered to all in the gospel. (See
Fornication - in every form of it was
sternly condemned by the Mosaic law (Lev. 21:9; 19:29; Deut. 22:20, 21,
23-29; 23:18; Ex. 22:16). (See ADULTERY.)
But this word is more frequently used in a symbolical than in its ordinary
sense. It frequently means a forsaking of God or a following after idols
(Isa. 1:2; Jer. 2:20; Ezek. 16; Hos. 1:2; 2:1-5; Jer. 3:8,9).
Fortunatus - fortunate, a disciple of Corinth
who visited Paul at Ephesus, and returned with Stephanas and Achaicus, the
bearers of the apostle's first letter to the Corinthians (1 Cor. 16:17).
Fountain - (Heb. 'ain; i.e., "eye" of the
water desert), a natural source of living water. Palestine was a "land of
brooks of water, of fountains, and depths that spring out of valleys and
hills" (Deut. 8:7; 11:11).
These fountains, bright sparkling "eyes" of the desert, are remarkable
for their abundance and their beauty, especially on the west of Jordan.
All the perennial rivers and streams of the country are supplied from
fountains, and depend comparatively little on surface water. "Palestine
is a country of mountains and hills, and it abounds in fountains of water.
The murmur of these waters is heard in every dell, and the luxuriant foliage
which surrounds them is seen in every plain." Besides its rain-water,
its cisterns and fountains, Jerusalem had also an abundant supply of water
in the magnificent reservoir called "Solomon's Pools" (q.v.), at the head
of the Urtas valley, whence it was conveyed to the city by subterrean
channels some 10 miles in length. These have all been long ago destroyed,
so that no water from the "Pools" now reaches Jerusalem. Only one fountain
has been discovered at Jerusalem, the so-called "Virgins's Fountains,"
in the valley of Kidron; and only one well (Heb. beer), the Bir Eyub,
also in the valley of Kidron, south of the King's Gardens, which has been
dug through the solid rock. The inhabitants of Jerusalem are now mainly
dependent on the winter rains, which they store in cisterns. (See WELL.)
Fountain of the Virgin - the perennial source
from which the Pool of Siloam (q.v.) is supplied, the waters flowing in
a copious stream to it through a tunnel cut through the rock, the actual
length of which is 1,750 feet. The spring rises in a cave 20 feet by 7.
A serpentine tunnel 67 feet long runs from it toward the left, off which
the tunnel to the Pool of Siloam branches. It is the only unfailing fountain
The fountain received its name from the "fantastic legend" that here
the virgin washed the swaddling-clothes of our Lord.
This spring has the singular characteristic of being intermittent, flowing
from three to five times daily in winter, twice daily in summer, and only
once daily in autumn. This peculiarity is accounted for by the supposition
that the outlet from the reservoir is by a passage in the form of a siphon.
Fowler - the arts of, referred to Ps. 91:3;
124:7; Prov. 6:5; Jer. 5:26; Hos. 9:8; Ezek. 17:20; Eccl. 9:12. Birds of
all kinds abound in Palestine, and the capture of these for the table and
for other uses formed the employment of many persons. The traps and snares
used for this purpose are mentioned Hos. 5:1; Prov. 7:23; 22:5; Amos 3:5;
Ps. 69:22; comp. Deut. 22:6, 7.
Fox - (Heb. shu'al, a name derived from
its digging or burrowing under ground), the Vulpes thaleb, or Syrian fox,
the only species of this animal indigenous to Palestine. It burrows, is
silent and solitary in its habits, is destructive to vineyards, being a
plunderer of ripe grapes (Cant. 2:15). The Vulpes Niloticus, or Egyptian
dog-fox, and the Vulpes vulgaris, or common fox, are also found in Palestine.
The proverbial cunning of the fox is alluded to in Ezek. 13:4, and in
Luke 13:32, where our Lord calls Herod "that fox." In Judg. 15:4, 5, the
reference is in all probability to the jackal. The Hebrew word shu'al_
through the Persian _schagal becomes our jackal (Canis aureus), so
that the word may bear that signification here. The reasons for preferring
the rendering "jackal" are (1) that it is more easily caught than the
fox; (2) that the fox is shy and suspicious, and flies mankind, while
the jackal does not; and (3) that foxes are difficult, jackals comparatively
easy, to treat in the way here described. Jackals hunt in large numbers,
and are still very numerous in Southern Palestine.
Frankincense - (Heb. lebonah; Gr. libanos,
i.e., "white"), an odorous resin imported from Arabia (Isa. 60:6; Jer. 6:20),
yet also growing in Palestine (Cant. 4:14). It was one of the ingredients
in the perfume of the sanctuary (Ex. 30:34), and was used as an accompaniment
of the meat-offering (Lev. 2:1, 16; 6:15; 24:7). When burnt it emitted a
fragrant odour, and hence the incense became a symbol of the Divine name
(Mal. 1:11; Cant. 1:3) and an emblem of prayer (Ps. 141:2; Luke 1:10; Rev.
This frankincense, or olibanum, used by the Jews in the temple services
is not to be confounded with the frankincense of modern commerce, which
is an exudation of the Norway spruce fir, the Pinus abies. It was probably
a resin from the Indian tree known to botanists by the name of Boswellia
serrata or thurifera, which grows to the height of forty feet.
Freedom - The law of Moses pointed out the
cases in which the servants of the Hebrews were to receive their freedom
(Ex. 21:2-4, 7, 8; Lev. 25:39-42, 47-55; Deut. 15:12-18). Under the Roman
law the "freeman" (ingenuus) was one born free; the "freedman" (libertinus)
was a manumitted slave, and had not equal rights with the freeman (Acts
22:28; comp. Acts 16:37-39; 21:39; 22:25; 25:11, 12).
Free-will offering - a spontaneous gift
(Ex. 35:29), a voluntary sacrifice (Lev. 22:23; Ezra 3:5), as opposed to
one in consequence of a vow, or in expiation of some offence.
Frog - (Heb. tsepharde'a, meaning a "marsh-leaper").
This reptile is mentioned in the Old Testament only in connection with one
of the plagues which fell on the land of Egypt (Ex. 8:2-14; Ps. 78:45; 105:30).
In the New Testament this word occurs only in Rev. 16:13, where it is
referred to as a symbol of uncleanness. The only species of frog existing
in Palestine is the green frog (Rana esculenta), the well-known edible
frog of the Continent.
Frontlets - occurs only in Ex. 13:16;
Deut. 6:8, and 11:18. The meaning of the injunction to the Israelites,
with regard to the statues and precepts given them, that they should "bind
them for a sign upon their hand, and have them as frontlets between their
eyes," was that they should keep them distinctly in view and carefully
attend to them. But soon after their return from Babylon they began to
interpret this injunction literally, and had accordingly portions of the
law written out and worn about their person. These they called tephillin,
i.e., "prayers." The passages so written out on strips of parchment were
these, Ex. 12:2-10; 13:11-21; Deut. 6:4-9; 11:18-21. They were then "rolled
up in a case of black calfskin, which was attached to a stiffer piece
of leather, having a thong one finger broad and one cubit and a half long.
Those worn on the forehead were written on four strips of parchment, and
put into four little cells within a square case, which had on it the Hebrew
letter called shin, the three points of which were regarded as an emblem
of God." This case tied around the forehead in a particular way was called
"the tephillah on the head." (See PHYLACTERY.)
Frost - (Heb. kerah, from its smoothness)
Job 37:10 (R.V., "ice"); Gen. 31:40; Jer. 36:30; rendered "ice" in Job 6:16,
38:29; and "crystal" in Ezek. 1:22. "At the present day frost is entirely
unknown in the lower portions of the valley of the Jordan, but slight frosts
are sometimes felt on the sea-coast and near Lebanon." Throughout Western
Asia cold frosty nights are frequently succeeded by warm days.
"Hoar frost" (Heb. kephor, so called from its covering the ground) is
mentioned in Ex. 16:14; Job 38:29; Ps. 147:16.
In Ps. 78:47 the word rendered "frost" (R.V. marg., "great hail-stones"),
hanamal, occurs only there. It is rendered by Gesenius, the Hebrew
lexicographer, "ant," and so also by others, but the usual interpretation
derived from the ancient versions may be maintained.
Fruit - a word as used in Scripture denoting
produce in general, whether vegetable or animal. The Hebrews divided the
fruits of the land into three classes:,
(1.) The fruit of the field, "corn-fruit" (Heb. dagan); all kinds of
grain and pulse.
(2.) The fruit of the vine, "vintage-fruit" (Heb. tirosh); grapes, whether
moist or dried.
(3.) "Orchard-fruits" (Heb. yitshar), as dates, figs, citrons, etc.
Injunctions concerning offerings and tithes were expressed by these
Hebrew terms alone (Num. 18:12; Deut. 14:23). This word "fruit" is also
used of children or offspring (Gen. 30:2; Deut. 7:13; Luke 1:42; Ps. 21:10;
132:11); also of the progeny of beasts (Deut. 28:51; Isa. 14:29).
It is used metaphorically in a variety of forms (Ps. 104:13; Prov. 1:31;
11:30; 31:16; Isa. 3:10; 10:12; Matt. 3:8; 21:41; 26:29; Heb. 13:15; Rom.
7:4, 5; 15:28).
The fruits of the Spirit (Gal. 5:22, 23; Eph. 5:9; James 3:17, 18) are
those gracious dispositions and habits which the Spirit produces in those
in whom he dwells and works.
Frying-pan - (Heb. marhesheth, a "boiler"),
a pot for boiling meat (Lev. 2:7; 7:9).
Fuel - Almost every kind of combustible
matter was used for fuel, such as the withered stalks of herbs (Matt.
6:30), thorns (Ps. 58:9; Eccl. 7:6), animal excrements (Ezek. 4:12-15;
15:4, 6; 21:32). Wood or charcoal is much used still in all the towns
of Syria and Egypt. It is largely brought from the region of Hebron to
Jerusalem. (See COAL.)
Fugitive - Gen. 4:12, 14, a rover or wanderer
(Heb. n'a); Judg. 12:4, a refugee, one who has escaped (Heb. palit); 2 Kings
25:11, a deserter, one who has fallen away to the enemy (Heb. nophel); Ezek.
17:21, one who has broken away in flight (Heb. mibrah); Isa. 15:5; 43:14,
a breaker away, a fugitive (Heb. beriah), one who flees away.
Fuller - The word "full" is from the Anglo-Saxon
fullian, meaning "to whiten." To full is to press or scour cloth in a mill.
This art is one of great antiquity. Mention is made of "fuller's soap" (Mal.
3:2), and of "the fuller's field" (2 Kings 18:17). At his transfiguration
our Lord's rainment is said to have been white "so as no fuller on earth
could white them" (Mark 9:3). En-rogel (q.v.), meaning literally "foot-fountain,"
has been interpreted as the "fuller's fountain," because there the fullers
trod the cloth with their feet.
Fuller's field - a spot near Jerusalem (2
Kings 18:17; Isa. 36:2; 7:3), on the side of the highway west of the city,
not far distant from the "upper pool" at the head of the valley of Hinnom.
Here the fullers pursued their occupation.
Fuller's soap - (Heb. borith mekabbeshim,
i.e., "alkali of those treading cloth"). Mention is made (Prov. 25:20;
Jer. 2:22) of nitre and also (Mal. 3:2) of soap (Heb. borith) used by
the fuller in his operations. Nitre is found in Syria, and vegetable alkali
was obtained from the ashes of certain plants. (See SOAP.)
Fulness - (1.) Of time (Gal. 4:4), the time
appointed by God, and foretold by the prophets, when Messiah should appear.
(2.) Of Christ (John 1:16), the superabundance of grace with which he was
filled. (3.) Of the Godhead bodily dwelling in Christ (Col. 2:9), i.e.,
the whole nature and attributes of God are in Christ. (4.) Eph. 1:23, the
church as the fulness of Christ, i.e., the church makes Christ a complete
and perfect head.
Funeral - Burying was among the Jews the
only mode of disposing of corpses (Gen. 23:19; 25:9; 35:8, 9, etc.).
The first traces of burning the dead are found in 1 Sam. 31:12. The
burning of the body was affixed by the law of Moses as a penalty to certain
crimes (Lev. 20:14; 21:9).
To leave the dead unburied was regarded with horror (1 Kings 13:22;
14:11; 16:4; 21:24, etc.).
In the earliest times of which we have record kinsmen carried their
dead to the grave (Gen. 25:9; 35:29; Judg. 16:31), but in later times
this was done by others (Amos 6:16).
Immediately after decease the body was washed, and then wrapped in a
large cloth (Acts 9:37; Matt. 27:59; Mark 15:46). In the case of persons
of distinction, aromatics were laid on the folds of the cloth (John 19:39;
comp. John 12:7).
As a rule the burial (q.v.) took place on the very day of the death
(Acts 5:6, 10), and the body was removed to the grave in an open coffin
or on a bier (Luke 7:14). After the burial a funeral meal was usually
given (2 Sam. 3:35; Jer. 16:5, 7; Hos. 9:4).
Furlong - a stadium, a Greek measure of
distance equal to 606 feet and 9 inches (Luke 24:13; John 6:19; 11:18; Rev.
Furnace - (1.) Chald. attun, a large furnace
with a wide open mouth, at the top of which materials were cast in (Dan.
3:22, 23; comp. Jer. 29:22). This furnace would be in constant requisition,
for the Babylonians disposed of their dead by cremation, as did also the
Accadians who invaded Mesopotamia.
(2.) Heb. kibshan, a smelting furnace (Gen. 19:28), also a lime-kiln
(Isa. 33:12; Amos 2:1).
(3.) Heb. kur, a refining furnace (Prov. 17:3; 27:21; Ezek. 22:18).
(4.) Heb. alil, a crucible; only used in Ps. 12:6.
(5.) Heb. tannur, oven for baking bread (Gen. 15:17; Isa. 31:9; Neh.
3:11). It was a large pot, narrowing towards the top. When it was heated
by a fire made within, the dough was spread over the heated surface, and
thus was baked. "A smoking furnace and a burning lamp" (Gen. 15:17), the
symbol of the presence of the Almighty, passed between the divided pieces
of Abraham's sacrifice in ratification of the covenant God made with him.
(6.) Gr. kamnos, a furnace, kiln, or oven (Matt. 13:42, 50; Rev. 1:15;
Furrow - an opening in the ground made by
the plough (Ps. 65:10; Hos. 10:4, 10).