What are the seven Bible words for Gold?
In the Old Testament there are seven (symbolizing spiritual perfection) Hebrew words used to refer to Gold. An example of each of these words is below.
"Surely there is a mine for silver, and a place where GOLD is refined . . . Its stones are the source of sapphires, and it contains GOLD dust." (Job 28:1, 6)
The Hebrew word used for gold in Job 28 (and many other places) is zâhâb, which is Strong's Concordance #H2091. Zâhâb is from a root word that means to shimmer or shine like gold. It is the most common Old Testament Hebrew word translated into the English word gold.
"The king shall have joy in Your strength, O Lord . . . For You meet him with the blessings of goodness. You set a crown of PURE GOLD upon his head." (Psalm 21:1, 4)
The Hebrew word translated as "pure gold" in the above verse is pâz, which is Strong's Concordance #H6337. It means pure or refined gold and sometimes refers to spiritual purity and glory.
"Then you will lay your GOLD in the dust, and the gold of Ophir among the stones of the brooks. Yes, the Almighty will be your GOLD and your precious silver;" (Job 22:24-25)
The Hebrew word betser translated as gold above (Strong's Concordance #H1220) is only in the book of Job. It comes from a root word meaning to dig or cut off, and refers to gold that is broken up.
The Hebrew word chârûts (Strong's Concordance #H2742) used for gold in Proverbs 8 is also used in Psalm 68:
"Receive my instruction, and not silver, and knowledge rather than choice GOLD" (Proverbs 8:10)
"Though you lie down among the sheepfolds, you will be like the wings of a dove covered with silver, and her feathers with yellow GOLD." (Psalm 68:13)
Chârûts comes from the Hebrew root word meaning to chop or cut off and refers to gold in pieces or parts.
"How the gold has become dim! How changed the FINE GOLD!" (Lamentations 4:1)
The word kethem (Strong's Concordance #H3800) translated as "fine gold" in the above verse means something carved out. When kethem refers to gold, it signifies gold that is pure as originally mined or gold that is stamped or engraved as being fine or pure.
The sixth word used to refer to gold in the Old Testament is sâgar (Strong's Concordance #H5462). It is found only once in the Bible, in Job 28:
"But where can wisdom be found? . . . It cannot be purchased for GOLD, nor can silver be weighed for its price." (Job 28:12, 15)
Sâgar generally means to shut up or enclose. When used in reference to gold in Job 28:15 it refers to gold in a solid state or gold as solid.
"This image’s head was of fine GOLD, its chest and arms of silver . . ." (Daniel 2:32)
The Hebrew word dehab (Strong's Concordance #H1722) translated as gold in the above verse occurs only in the books of Daniel and Ezra. It has a similar meaning to the word gold in our first example (zâhâb) and is another way the Bible references gold or golden in general.
Coins and the Church at Sardis
Coin minted by
King Croesus around 550 B.C.
Lydian King Croesus (Kroisos), who ruled from about 560 to 547 B.C., struck and issued the first true pure gold (and silver) coins used in the marketplace. His father King Alyattes, who reigned from about 610 to 560 B.C., minted and distributed the world's first coins. Alyattes' coins were made of electrum, an alloy of gold and silver.
The kingdom of Lydia, which was located in the western part of Asia Minor, had Sardis as its capital city. In 95 A.D., the Christian church in Sardis received warnings directly from God regarding their spiritual standing with him (Revelation 3:1-6).
How much is a Biblical talent worth?
A talent in the Bible weighed about 75 U.S. pounds or 34.3 kilograms. This means the world's largest gold bar, weighing in at 250 kilograms (551 U.S. pounds), is roughly equal to 7.3 talents. There are 1,094 troy ounces in one talent. If we assume a price of $1,500 per troy ounce of gold, a talent would be worth $1,639,500. At $1,750 per troy ounce, a talent would be valued at $1,912,750 (close to two million dollars)!
Who mined and exported it?
The Bible lists at least 6 places in ancient times where gold deposits were found:
Havilah (Genesis 2:11-12)
Ophir (1Kings 9:28; 10:11; 1Chronicles 29:4; 2Chronicles 8:18; Job 22:24)
Tarshish (2Chronicles 9:21, Isaiah 60:9)
Parvaim (2Chronicles 3:6)
Sheba (1Kings 10:10; 2Chronicles 9:9; Psalm 72:15)
Uphaz (Jeremiah 10:9)
Gold and Bible Prophecy
The prophetic book of Revelation refers to gold no less than 22 times! It will play a major role in the prophetic End Time events that will occur before the return of Jesus. God himself will use it to create the New Jerusalem he will bring down from heaven after the fulfilling of all prophecy!
Seven golden lampstands are referred to 3 times in the book of Revelation:
"Then I turned to see the voice that spoke with me. And having turned I saw SEVEN GOLDEN LAMPSTANDS;" (Revelation 1:12)
"To the angel of the church of Ephesus write, 'These things says He who holds the seven stars in His right hand, who walks in the midst of the SEVEN GOLDEN LAMPSTANDS: . . .' " (Revelation 2:1)
Jesus was wearing a gold band around his chest when John first saw him in a vision:
"and in the midst of the seven lampstands One like the Son of Man, clothed with a garment down to the feet and girded about the chest with a GOLDEN BAND." (Revelation 1:13)
The twenty-four elders around God's throne wear golden crowns and offer incense:
"Around the throne were twenty-four thrones, and on the thrones I saw twenty-four elders sitting, clothed in white robes; and they had CROWNS OF GOLD on their heads." (Revelation 4:4)
"Now when He had taken the scroll, the four living creatures and the twenty-four elders fell down before the Lamb, each having a harp, and GOLDEN BOWLS full of incense, which are the prayers of the saints." (Revelation 5:8)
An angel with a golden censer will be given incense to offer before an altar:
"Then another angel, having a GOLDEN CENSER, came and stood at the altar. He was given much incense, that he should offer it with the prayers of all the saints upon the GOLDEN ALTAR which was before the throne." (Revelation 8:3)
Locusts wearing something like a crown will be given power to torment humans for five months:
"The shape of the locusts was like horses prepared for battle. On their heads were crowns of something like GOLD, and their faces were like the faces of men. " (Revelation 9:7)
Sadly, the Bible says some people during the tribulation will refuse to repent even after they have suffered:
"But the rest of mankind, who were not killed by these plagues, did not repent of the works of their hands, that they should not worship demons, and IDOLS OF GOLD . . . " (Revelation 9:20)
Jesus will appear in a cloud wearing a crown and carrying a sickle:
"Then I looked, and behold, a white cloud, and on the cloud sat One like the Son of Man, having on His head a GOLDEN CROWN, and in His hand a sharp sickle." (Revelation 14:14)
The apostle John sees a vision of a woman called MYSTERY, BABYLON THE GREAT . . . :
"So he carried me away in the Spirit into the wilderness. And I saw a woman sitting on a scarlet beast which was full of names of blasphemy, having seven heads and ten horns. The woman was arrayed in purple and scarlet, and adorned with GOLD . . ." (Revelation 17:3-4)
A New Jerusalem, coming down from heaven, will be measured with a golden reed:
"Then I, John, saw the holy city, New Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband . . . And he who talked with me had a GOLD REED to measure the city, its gates, and its wall."
"The construction of its wall was of jasper; and the city was PURE GOLD . . ." (Revelation 21:2, 15, 18, 21)
The New Jerusalem
In closing, we find an interesting statement at the end of the Bible regarding how the New Jerusalem will look:
"Now I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away. Also there was no more sea. Then I, John, saw the holy city, New Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband . . .
"The construction of its wall was of jasper; and the city was PURE GOLD, like clear glass . . . And the street of the city was PURE GOLD, like transparent glass." (Revelation 21:1-2, 18, 21)
Could John's account of the gold used in the New Jerusalem be literally TRUE? How could such a dense metal like gold look as clear as GLASS? It is only in modern times that man has had the science and technology to take more advantage of gold's amazing properties. Gold is the most malleable and ductile of ALL metals. Under tremendous pressure, a single U.S. ounce (28 grams) of pure gold can now be beaten and stretched into a 300 square foot (28 square meters) sheet so thin that it appears TRANSPARENT. Because gold can look CLEAR, some aircraft cockpit windows now have a thin layer of gold applied on top of them in order to retard icing. These specially treated windows have their ice removed by passing a small electrical current through their thin gold layer!