The Number Fourteen in the Bible

The biblical significance of the number fourteen is very understated if you are just 14looking in a concordance, as there are not a lot of instances of it mentioned.  Many of them are associated with one very important day but fourteen and its symbolism goes very deep and starts with how it is written in Hebrew. Each of the twenty-two letters in the Hebrew alphabet represents a number.  The first nine letters are the ones for single digit numbers and the others take on higher numerical values.  An acrostic psalm is one that each verse/section starts with a letter of the alphabet so they either have twenty-two verses like Psalm 25 and 34 or twenty-two sections.  Psalm 119, which is acrostic, is divided into twenty-two sections of eight verses.  (Please see my blog for different way to read Psalm 119.)

The fourteenth letter of the Hebrew alphabet is Nun, like Joshua, and is pronounced “noon”; in the counting system it represents the number fifty.  The meanings and types and shadows that are associated with Nun really are a great study in itself so I will encourage you to look deeper but here are my gleanings from the literature.  Nun equals the word David so it is immediately associated with the Messiah. (See more on fourteen in the Book of Matthew and the Christmas story.)  For Christians it goes deeper than that since it also means “fish” in Aramaic, which leads to the symbol of the fish or ichthus.  The thirteenth letter in Hebrew is Mem, which represents water that is needed for fish.  Nun is a shared letter with several other languages so in the literature you will see that it also represents a snake/eel and seeds.  The snake that Moses made in the wilderness, Nehushtan, was a shadow of Jesus and He referred to Himself as a “seed of wheat” that had to “fall to the ground and die.”  Nun is used to portray life and faithfulness so you can see it is a very symbolic letter.

There are two different Nuns, one is standing and the other is kneeling.  They can also be written with “crowns.” (Please see the website Hebrew4Christians listed below.)  When they are combined to make the word Nun together they represent the righteous one (who is upright) and faithful one (who is bent) or love and fear.

fn_bluei                                                                          n_bluei

“image copyright Bitsela, used courtesy of free-bitsela.com”

Numerically Nun is fifty or Pentecost, which leads to what I would like to propose the number 14 means in Scripture – the new thing actually starting.  Pentecost was the beginning of the Church of Jesus and the new anointing of the Holy Spirit.  Just as 13 was signaling the start so 14 is the start.  Remember Mem is before Nun in the alphabet. Just as Joshua son of Nun “started” the Promise Land or David started the family tree of Jesus things associated with 14 show things starting.  My groupings below are just a product of my need to sort things but hopefully, they will help.

Fourteen

  • Exodus 12:6 – The 14th day of the month was the start of Passover or when Israel as a nation was started.  Most references to 14 in the Bible are about a Passover that was being celebrated.
  • Esther 9:15 – The day of Purim was the 14th day of the month; this is when the Jews were allowed to kill their enemies.  This started a new period of freedom for them.
  • Ezekiel 40 – Fourteen years after Jerusalem was destroyed Ezekiel had the visionKing's timeline the end of the New Temple.  In verse one, the reference to 25 years is how long Ezekiel was in exile. (Please see the timeline at Jeremiah 52.)  One way to look at the 70 years of Exile is 14 x 5 = 70.
  • Acts 27:27 – It was the 14th day of being in the storm when Paul got the crew to eat so they could start “new” on the island.
  • Matthew 1:17 – Matthew used fourteen because David translated into numbers equals fourteen.  (See Jesus’ Generations in Matthew)

7 + 7 = 14

  • Genesis 8:9 -12 – Noah sent the dove out twice and waited a total of 14 days.  That showed that the earth had dried and started growing again.
  • 1 Kings 8:65 – Solomon and the people had 14 days of partying for the new Temple.
  • 2 Chronicles 30:15 – Hezekiah and the people had 14 days of partying for Passover. Which had not been celebrated in a long time so it was a sort of new beginnings.

12 + 2 = 14

  • Ezra 3: 1+8 – Zerubbabel and the people had been back in Jerusalem a year and in the second month of the second year they started to build the Second Temple, 12 months + 2 months = 14 months.  In the 7th month of the first year, they built the altar and started sacrificing burnt offerings so it could be a 7+7.

Other 14’s (You may need to work with me here.)

  • Genesis 31:41 – Jacob worked 14 years for his wives and then started working for his family.
  • Book of Joshua – The tribe of Benjamin and a “clan” of Judah got 14 towns each to start a new life in the Promise Land.
  • 2 Kings 18:13 – Hezekiah and Jerusalem were attacked in his 14th year as king and he got the boil with the death sentence.  But he got a new lease on life and 15 more years (2 Kings 20:6).
  • 1 Chronicles 25:5 – Heman had 14 sons through the promise of God so he had a new reason to praise God.

“Pushing it” 14’s

  • Genesis 14 – King of Sodom rebels in his 14th year and Abraham rescues Lot.  In verse 22 is where Abraham starts to really acknowledge God, up until now God was “doing for” Abraham.
  • Exodus 14 – Moses and the people were directed back to the Red Sea so they could actually start out of Egypt; until now they were just wandering around inside of Egypt.
  • No, I did not check all Chapter 14’s in the Bible so who knows what gems of knowledge are waiting to be found.  Yes, I did check all the 13th chapters when I studied the number 13.

Acrostic Psalms

A quick look at the “14th verses” of some of the acrostic Psalms. (This is not all of the acrostic psalms.)  These may not show a “starting” I just like the scripture.

  • Ps 25: 14 The Lord confides in those who fear Him; He makes His covenant known to them.
  • Ps. 34: 14 Turn from evil and do good; seek peace and pursue it.
  • Ps.37: 25 – 27 Verse 27 is similar to Ps 34:14 Turn from evil and do good; then you will dwell in the land forever.
  • Ps.145:14 The Lord upholds all who fall and lifts up all who are bowed down.
  • Ps 119: 105 Your word is a lamp to my and a light for my path.

The 14’s after the 13’s

Remember Joseph after 13 years of slavery/prison was the leader of the country in the 14th year and several others that I listed in the post on The Number Thirteen in the Bible.  I hope this study has shown you that biblically fourteen is important and that the significance of fourteen is alive and well in your life and that “new things” are starting in your life now.  A study of the number fifteen is available at Cleaning Up to Celebrate. A study on sixteen in the Bible is at Sixteen In The Bible.

http://bethaderech.com/learning-hebrew-the-letter-nun/

http://hebrew4christians.com/Grammar/Unit_One/Aleph-Bet/Nun/nun.html

The Nun graphics came from http://free-bitsela.com/gallery/main.php?g2_itemId=897&g2_page=6

Hezekiah part 2

In part one I said to study Hezekiah start with Ahaz his father.  So I followed my own advice and did it again. Ahaz was a “bad” king and the nagging thought of “why” has been with me for several days. In 2 Chronicles it says he starts his reign at the age of twenty and ruled for sixteen years; that makes him 36 when he died. (see my timeline) Hezekiah started ruling when he was 25 so a little math tells us that Ahaz started his family at 11 years old. Maybe now we can start seeing why Ahaz was a mess. His great-grandsons at the end of 2 Chronicles were active very early also. This sort of answered my next question, why was Hezekiah so different? Probably he was not raised around his father instead he may have been raised by his mother’s parents.  Ahab, the king associated with Elijah, did this with his children; it was good business and at least kept part of the family safe in case of attack.

To add a few thoughts about Hezekiah and some things he did and may have done. In Proverbs 25 the heading in my NIV Bible says that these proverbs were copied by Hezekiah’s men but had been written by Solomon. So that adds to his “good” of cleaning and reopening the Temple and helping revival by holding Passover for the first time in over 250 years.

These, as always, are almost impossible to prove but because of the content I think he may have written Psalm 102 and 116 during or after his illness. I give him Psalm 119 just for the scholarly work that went into its writing and the phrase of verse 67, “before I was afflicted.” Psalm 119 is acrostic, which means that a verse or section was written using each letter in their alphabet. Each one of the sections also has eight verses in it, the number of “new beginning.” Something that I noticed several years ago was that if you lined them up and read all of the similar verses they made sense that way also. Example read verse 8, 16, 24, 32, 40, 48, 56, 64, 72, 80, 88, 96, 104, 112, 120, 128, 136, 144, 152, 160, 168 and 176 together they make a continuous thought. So you can read the 22 sections or you can read it as 8 sections with 22 verses each. (see Psalm 119 rewritten) See the other Psalms I try to connect with people.

The picture is from http://christianimagesource.com/king_hezekiah_g337-king_hezekiah__image_4_p2265.html 

Psalm 119 Rewritten

I reordered Psalm 119 to make it eight sets of twenty-two verses.  For me it reads better.

1 Blessed are those whose ways are blameless, who walk according to the law of the LORD. 9 How can a young person stay on the path of purity? By living according to your word. 17 Be good to your servant while I live, that I may obey your word.  25 I am laid low in the dust; preserve my life according to your word. 33 Teach me, LORD, the way of your decrees, that I may follow it to the end. 41 May your unfailing love come to me, LORD, your salvation, according to your promise; 49 remember your word to your servant, for you have given me hope.  57 You are my portion, LORD; I have promised to obey your words. 65 Do good to your servant according to your word, LORD. 73 Your hands made me and formed me; give me understanding to learn your commands. 81 My soul faints with longing for your salvation, but I have put my hope in your word. 89 Your word, LORD, is eternal; it stands firm in the heavens. 97 Oh, how I love your law! I meditate on it all day long. 105 Your word is a lamp for my feet, a light on my path. 113 I hate double-minded people, but I love your law. 121 I have done what is righteous and just; do not leave me to my oppressors. 129 Your statutes are wonderful; therefore I obey them. 137 You are righteous, LORD, and your laws are right. 145 I call with all my heart; answer me, LORD, and I will obey your decrees. 153 Look on my suffering and deliver me, for I have not forgotten your law. 161 Rulers persecute me without cause, but my heart trembles at your word. 169 May my cry come before you, LORD; give me understanding according to your word.

2 Blessed are those who keep his statutes and seek him with all their heart—
10 I seek you with all my heart; do not let me stray from your commands. 18 Open my eyes that I may see wonderful things in your law. 26 I gave an account of my ways and you answered me; teach me your decrees. 34 Give me understanding, so that I may keep your law and obey it with all my heart. 42 then I can answer anyone who taunts me, for I trust in your word. 50 My comfort in my suffering is this: Your promise preserves my life. 58 I have sought your face with all my heart; be gracious to me according to your promise. 66 Teach me knowledge and good judgment, for I trust your commands. 74 May those who fear you rejoice when they see me, for I have put my hope in your word. 82 My eyes fail, looking for your promise; I say, “When will you comfort me?” 90 Your faithfulness continues through all generations; you established the earth, and it endures. 98 Your commands are always with me and make me wiser than my enemies. 106 I have taken an oath and confirmed it, that I will follow your righteous laws. 114 You are my refuge and my shield; I have put my hope in your word. 122 Ensure your servant’s well-being; do not let the arrogant oppress me. 130 The unfolding of your words gives light; it gives understanding to the simple. 138 The statutes you have laid down are righteous; they are fully trustworthy. 146 I call out to you; save me and I will keep your statutes. 154 Defend my cause and redeem me; preserve my life according to your promise. 162 I rejoice in your promise like one who finds great spoil. 170 May my supplication come before you; deliver me according to your promise.

3 They (those who seek Him) do no wrong but follow his ways.11 I have hidden your word in my heart that I might not sin against you. 19 I am a stranger on earth; do not hide your commands from me. 27 Cause me to understand the way of your precepts that I may meditate on your wonderful deeds. 35 Direct me in the path of your commands, for there I find delight. 43 Never take your word of truth from my mouth, for I have put my hope in your laws. 51 The arrogant mock me unmercifully, but I do not turn from your law. 59 I have considered my ways and have turned my steps to your statutes. 67 Before I was afflicted I went astray, but now I obey your word. 75 I know, LORD, that your laws are righteous, and that in faithfulness you have afflicted me. 83 Though I am like a wineskin in the smoke, I do not forget your decrees. 91 Your laws endure to this day, for all things serve you. 99 I have more insight than all my teachers, for I meditate on your statutes. 107 I have suffered much; preserve my life, LORD, according to your word. 115 Away from me, you evildoers, that I may keep the commands of my God! 123 My eyes fail, looking for your salvation, looking for your righteous promise. 131 I open my mouth and pant, longing for your commands. 139 My zeal wears me out, for my enemies ignore your words. 147 I rise before dawn and cry for help; I have put my hope in your word. 155 Salvation is far from the wicked, for they do not seek out your decrees. 163 I hate and detest falsehood but I love your law. 171 May my lips overflow with praise, for you teach me your decrees.

4 You have laid down precepts that are to be fully obeyed.12 Praise be to you, LORD; teach me your decrees. 20 My soul is consumed with longing for your laws at all times. 28 My soul is weary with sorrow; strengthen me according to your word. 36 Turn my heart toward your statutes and not toward selfish gain. 44 I will always obey your law, for ever and ever. 52 I remember, LORD, your ancient laws, and I find comfort in them. 60 I will hasten and not delay to obey your commands. 68 You are good, and what you do is good; teach me your decrees. 76 May your unfailing love be my comfort, according to your promise to your servant. 84 How long must your servant wait? When will you punish my persecutors? 92 If your law had not been my delight, I would have perished in my affliction. 100 I have more understanding than the elders, for I obey your precepts. 108 Accept, LORD, the willing praise of my mouth, and teach me your laws. 116 Sustain me, my God, according to your promise, and I will live; do not let my hopes be dashed. 124 Deal with your servant according to your love and teach me your decrees. 132 Turn to me and have mercy on me, as you always do to those who love your name. 140 Your promises have been thoroughly tested, and your servant loves them. 148 My eyes stay open through the watches of the night that I may meditate on your promises. 156 Your compassion, LORD, is great; preserve my life according to your laws. 164 Seven times a day I praise you for your righteous laws. 172 May my tongue sing of your word, for all your commands are righteous.

5 Oh, that my ways were steadfast in obeying your decrees!13 With my lips I recount all the laws that come from your mouth. 21 You rebuke the arrogant, who are accursed, those who stray from your commands. 29 Keep me from deceitful ways; be gracious to me and teach me your law. 37 Turn my eyes away from worthless things; preserve my life according to your word. 45 I will walk about in freedom, for I have sought out your precepts. 53 Indignation grips me because of the wicked, who have forsaken your law. 61 Though the wicked bind me with ropes, I will not forget your law. 69 Though the arrogant have smeared me with lies, I keep your precepts with all my heart. 77 Let your compassion come to me that I may live, for your law is my delight. 85 The arrogant dig pits to trap me, contrary to your law. 93 I will never forget your precepts, for by them you have preserved my life. 101 I have kept my feet from every evil path so that I might obey your word. 109 Though I constantly take my life in my hands, I will not forget your law. 117 Uphold me, and I will be delivered; I will always have regard for your decrees. 125 I am your servant; give me discernment that I may understand your statutes. 133 Direct my footsteps according to your word; let no sin rule over me. 141 Though I am lowly and despised, I do not forget your precepts. 149 Hear my voice in accordance with your love; preserve my life, LORD, according to your laws. 157 Many are the foes who persecute me, but I have not turned from your statutes. 165 Great peace have those who love your law, and nothing can make them stumble. 173 May your hand be ready to help me, for I have chosen your precepts.

6 Then I would not be put to shame when I consider all your commands.14 I rejoice in following your statutes as one rejoices in great riches. 22 Remove from me their scorn and contempt, for I keep your statutes. 30 I have chosen the way of faithfulness; I have set my heart on your laws. 38 Fulfill your promise to your servant, so that you may be feared. 46 I will speak of your statutes before kings and will not be put to shame, 54 Your decrees are the theme of my song wherever I lodge. 62 At midnight I rise to give you thanks for your righteous laws. 70 Their hearts are callous and unfeeling, but I delight in your law. 78 May the arrogant be put to shame for wronging me without cause; but I will meditate on your precepts. 86 All your commands are trustworthy; help me, for I am being persecuted without cause. 94 Save me, for I am yours; I have sought out your precepts. 102 I have not departed from your laws, for you yourself have taught me. 110 The wicked have set a snare for me, but I have not strayed from your precepts. 118 You reject all who stray from your decrees, for their delusions come to nothing. 126 It is time for you to act, LORD; your law is being broken. 134 Redeem me from human oppression, that I may obey your precepts. 142 Your righteousness is everlasting and your law is true. 150 Those who devise wicked schemes are near, but they are far from your law. 158 I look on the faithless with loathing, for they do not obey your word. 166 I wait for your salvation, LORD, and I follow your commands. 174 I long for your salvation, LORD, and your law gives me delight.

7 I will praise you with an upright heart as I learn your righteous laws.15 I meditate on your precepts and consider your ways. 23 Though rulers sit together and slander me, your servant will meditate on your decrees. 31 I hold fast to your statutes, LORD; do not let me be put to shame. 39 Take away the disgrace I dread, for your laws are good. 47 for I delight in your commands because I love them. 55 In the night, LORD, I remember your name, that I may keep your law. 63 I am a friend to all who fear you, to all who follow your precepts. 71 It was good for me to be afflicted so that I might learn your decrees. 79 May those who fear you turn to me, those who understand your statutes. 87 They almost wiped me from the earth, but I have not forsaken your precepts. 95 The wicked are waiting to destroy me, but I will ponder your statutes. 103 How sweet are your words to my taste,
sweeter than honey to my mouth! 111 Your statutes are my heritage forever; they are the joy of my heart. 119 All the wicked of the earth you discard like dross; therefore I love your statutes. 127 Because I love your commands more than gold, more than pure gold, 135 Make your face shine on your servant and teach me your decrees. 143 Trouble and distress have come upon me, but your commands give me delight. 151 Yet you are near, LORD, and all your commands are true. 159 See how I love your precepts; preserve my life, LORD, in accordance with your love. 167 I obey your statutes, for I love them greatly. 175 Let me live that I may praise you, and may your laws sustain me.

8 I will obey your decrees; do not utterly forsake me. 16 I delight in your decrees; I will not neglect your word.  24 Your statutes are my delight; they are my counselors. 32 I run in the path of your commands, for you have broadened my understanding. 40 How I long for your precepts! In your righteousness preserve my life. 48 I reach out for your commands, which I love, that I may meditate on your decrees. 56 This has been my practice: I obey your precepts. 64 The earth is filled with your love, LORD; teach me your decrees. 72 The law from your mouth is more precious to me than thousands of pieces of silver and gold. 80 May I wholeheartedly follow your decrees, that I may not be put to shame. 88 In your unfailing love preserve my life, that I may obey the statutes of your mouth. 96 To all perfection I see a limit, but your commands are boundless. 104 I gain understanding from your precepts; therefore I hate every wrong path. 112 My heart is set on keeping your decrees to the very end. 120 My flesh trembles in fear of you; I stand in awe of your laws. 128 and because I consider all your precepts right, I hate every wrong path. 136 Streams of tears flow from my eyes, for your law is not obeyed. 144 Your statutes are always righteous; give me understanding that I may live. 152 Long ago I learned from your statutes that you established them to last forever. 160 All your words are true; all your righteous laws are eternal. 168 I obey your precepts and your statutes, for all my ways are known to you. 176 I have strayed like a lost sheep. Seek your servant, for I have not forgotten your commands.

New International Version (NIV)

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