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Ancient Hebrew-Phoenician word pictures


The languages used by modern peoples as a means of expression are limited in scope to the extent that true meanings are sometimes elusive, and require clarification. For example, we often understand vis--vis speech more clearly than written words perhaps because we as humans unconsciously tend to watch for the speakers 'body language', gestures, tones and the word accents an individual uses to express themselves.

Thus we unwittingly use 'pictures' in communication today.

It is interesting and of note that the earliest language was what we might term hieroglyphics, or literally "word-pictures".

In investigating this, I found that the earliest languages were all this type, that is Chinese, Egyptian, and the early Phoenician, from which Hebrew, Greek and English were all derived.

There are several places on the web where this can be verified, among them are:



This second reference has an easily read chart at the very bottom of its page which has the ancient, modern and original meanings of the Hebrew characters.

I have used the word pictures derived from these meanings in my studies. The clarity is amazing. Some confusing passages in the Old Testament can sometimes be more clear when key words can be addressed with their word picture.

You do not have to be able to read Hebrew to understand the application. When Hebrew is written in its early form, each letter represented both a sound and a picture. Even if you do not understand the sounds, the pictures inside the Hebrew word will still be clear.

If you visit the second reference above and print out the chart for reference, you can soon decode your own Hebrew 'word pictures'.

I will give several examples.

1) The word "zar" in Hebrew is 'enemy'. It is formed from 2 letters, Zayin and Reysh. From the chart the early form of Zayin is a picture of an ax, (weapon). Reysh is a picture of a man's head. Thus the word-picture in 'zar' = enemy is "weapon-man" .

2) The word 'father' in Hebrew is 'ab'. The letters are Aleph and Beth. From the chart, Aleph is the head of an ox, with the meaning of strong, first, leader, etc. Beth is a picture of a tent, or house, or dwelling. Thus the word-picture is that a Father is the strong of the house, or leader of the house.

3) The word God in Hebrew is 'El'.  The letters are Aleph-Lamed.  As before, Aleph is first, strong, leader.  From the chart, Lamed is a picture of a cattle goad, or shepherd's staff.  Thus the word picture for God is the 'Strong, First, Shepherd'.

4)The word 'dat' in Hebrew means 'religion'. The letters are Daleth and Tav. From the chart Daleth is a "doorway". Tav is a "sign". (T=cross). Thus the word picture for "religion" is the "door of the sign", or cross.

5) The word 'mar' in Hebrew is "bitter". The letters are Mem and Reysh. From the chart, mem is massive, liquid chaos, water. As before Reysh is the head of a man. Thus the word picture for bitter is that of a "chaos or unstable man". Water is unstable in all its ways.

6) The word "brother" in Hebrew is 'ach'. The letters are Aleph and Chet. From the chart, Chet is a fence, inner room, to separate. Aleph as before is first or strong. Thus the word picture for brother is a "Strong Fence".

7) Knowledge in Hebrew is 'deah'. The letters are 3, Daleth, Ayin and Hey. Ayin from the chart is an eye, to see. Hey from the chart is a window, lattice, opening, to behold. As before, Daleth is a door. Thus the word picture for knowledge is "the door of the eye" or to "know by experience".

Using the Strong's concordance, you can take the modern Hebrew word there, (its letters) back to their picture form by referencing the chart. Remember Hebrew is written right to left. You will be able to gleen much insight into the message of the Old Testament this way.

Have fun

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