The Symbolic Meaning of
Biblical Words and Phrases

Submit questions  -  New Articles
Word - PhraseSymbolism / Represents

Abraham's Bosom

A close, personal relationship - Luke 16:22-23

Ark of the CovenantThe Presence of God - 2Chronicles 7:1-3, Ezekiel 8-11

Armor

War, Spiritual Protection - Jeremiah 50:35-37, Romans 13:12, Ephesians 6

Arrows War, God's judgment - Job 6:4; Psalm 38:2

Ashes

Insignificance, Worthlessness - Genesis 18:27, Job 30:19

AssHumility, Peace, Wildness - Zechariah 9:9, Matthew 21:5, Genesis 16:12

Babylon

Man's system of rule that is led and deceived by Satan the devil - Revelation 14:8, 16:19, 17:3, 5

Bald, BaldnessBarrenness - Jeremiah 47:5

Banner

Rallying point or place for God's people - Isaiah 5:26, 11:10, Jeremiah 4:21

What do Biblical Colors mean?

How did we get the Bible?

Bible Study Rules and Tips

Why are there so many Bibles?

Comparison of Biblical Translations

Beasts

Worldly kingdoms ran by carnal men - Daniel 7:17; 1Corinthians 15:32

Bitter, BitternessCruelty, Misery - Genesis 27:34, Exodus 15:23, Numbers 5:18

Blindness

Lack of mental or spiritual perception, inability to make moral distinctions - Isaiah 42:16, 18, 19, Matthew 23:16, John 9:39

BodyA whole person, that which is corrupt - Romans 6:6, 12, 7:24, Hebrews 10:5

Brass

Firm, strong, hardness, obstinacy - Psalm 107:16, Isaiah 48:4, Ezekiel 22:18

BowelsDeep emotion or feelings - Job 30:27, Lamentations 1:20

Brimstone

Utter destruction and punishment - Job 18:15, Psalm 11:6, Isaiah 30:33, Luke 17:29, Revelation 9:17

Candles or CandlesticksTrue churches of God - Revelation 1:20, 2:1

Chariots

Angelic hosts - Zechariah 6:1, Psalm 68:17

CloakTo hide, make an excuse - 1Thessalonians 2:5, John 15:22

Cornerstone

The Messiah - Psalm 118:22, Matthew 21:42, Mark 12:10, Luke 20:17, Acts 4:11, 1Peter 2:7

CupThat which is portioned out, especially God's judgments. Can also represent Jesus' sufferings. - Psalm 11:6, Revelation 14:10, Matthew 26:39

Crown

Victory over something, a reward - James 1:12; Revelation 2:10

Dark, Darkness Moral depravity and its punishment - Psalm 82:5, Proverbs 2:13, John 3:19

Day

Span of a human life, an indefinite time period, a set time, a past time, a future time - Genesis 3:14, 5:4, 25:24, Psalm 18:18, Deuteronomy 31:14

Deaf Disregard for the things of God - Isaiah 29:18, 42:18, 19

Door

Opportunity, Freedom, Power - Matthew 25:10, Acts 14:27; 1Corinthians 16:9, Colossians 4:3

Dragon Satan the devil - Ezekiel 29:3; Revelation 12:3, 9

Earthquake

Calamities - Matthew 24:7; Revelation 6:12

Eyes The heart, mind, disposition of man - Psalm 119:18, Ephesians 1:18, Matthew 13:13, Proverbs 6:17

Face of God

Favor or Grace from God - Psalm 13:1; Daniel 9:17

Fire Judgment - Numbers 11:1, 3; Isaiah 42:25

Forehead

Beliefs, Choices, Character of a Person - Revelation 7:3, 13:16

Furnace Affliction - Isaiah 48:10; Jeremiah 11:4

Gold

Earthly riches and luxury, Purity, Incorruption, Something of great value - Job 3:15, 1Peter 1:7, Revelation 3:18, Acts 17:29, 1 Peter 1:7, 18, 3:3, Proverbs 3:14, 8:10, Jeremiah 4:30, 10:4

Head One who rules or is ruler - Ephesians 1:22

Hedge

Protection directly from God - Job 1:10; Ezekiel 13:5

HeelOnly a partial victory - Genesis 3:15

Honey

Abundance - Exodus 3:8, 17, Leviticus 20:24

HornGentile King - Daniel 7:24, Revelation 17:12

Horse

War, Strength of military - Zechariah 9:10; Jeremiah 51:21

Hunger and Thirst Greatly desire - Matthew 5:6; Luke 1:53

Hyssop

Cleansing - Psalm 51:7

Incense Prayer, especially from believers - Malachi 1:11; Revelation 5:8

Keys

Power and authority - Isaiah 22:22; Revelation 1:18

LeavenSin, non-biblical teachings - Matthew 16:12, 1Corinthians 5:6-8

Light

Instruction that comes from God and the Bible, a product of salvation - Psalm 27:1, 119:30, Proverbs 6:23, Job 24:13

Milk Abundance, prosperity - Ezekiel 25:4; Joel 3:18

Mountains

A kingdom, authority or rule - Psalm 30:7; Isaiah 2:2; Daniel 44, 45; Revelation 17:9-11

NicolaitansRuling over the faith of others, Hierarchical church government - Revelation 2:1, 6, 12, 15

Night

Adversity, affliction, ignorance - Isaiah 21:12; Revelation 21:25

Oil Prosperity - Deuteronomy 32:13, 33:24, 2Kings 18:32

Pillar

Foundational - Galatians 2:9, 1Timothy 3:15

Rain Something refreshing, delightful - Psalm 68:9; Isaiah 5:6

Rock

God as a refuge and salvation - Psalm 18:2, 94:22, 95:1

Rod Correction - Psalm 2:9; Job 9:34, etc.

Salt

Judgment, purification, loyalty, covenant, the role of Christian in the world - Genesis 19:6, Exodus 30:35, Numbers 18:19, Matthew 5:13

Sea A mass of people - Jeremiah 51:42; Ezekiel 26:3; Matthew 13:47, Revelation 13:1

Seal / Sealed

Ownership, security - Daniel 6:17, Jeremiah 32;11-12, Ephesians 4:30, 2Timothy 2:19

ScrollGod or man's written word - Ezra 6:2, Jeremiah 36:2, Ezekiel 3:1-3

Serpent

The wicked, Satan the devil - Psalm 58:4, Revelation 12:9, 20:2, Genesis 3:1; 2Corinthians 11:3

Sheep Those who follow Jesus - John 10:11, etc.

Shepherds

Rulers either in civil affairs or those who guide Christians - Nahum 3:18; Ezekiel 34:2

Shield Defense, protection - Psalm 84:9; Ephesians 6:16

Silver

Redemption - Exodus 38:27

Sleep Death - Daniel 12:2; 1Thessalonians 4:14

Star

A prince or ruler - Numbers 24:17; Daniel 8:10

Sword War, killing - Isaiah 34:5; Ezekiel 21:3

Tail

Subjection, degradation - Deuteronomy 28:13, 44; Isaiah 9:15

Teeth Cruelty - Psalm 3:7; Proverbs 30:14

Thorns

Desolation, troubles - Proverbs 24:31; Hosea 2:6

Throne Kingdom, seat of government - Psalm 122:5; Daniel 7:9

Topheth (Valley of Hinnom)

Lake of Fire - 2Kings 23:10, Matthew 18:9, 23:33; Mark 9:43, Revelation 19:20

Tree of LifeLiving God's way of life - Genesis 2:9, Revelation 22:1-2

Trees

Those who are great - Daniel 4:20-22

Veil The way into God's presence is not open - Matthew 27:51, Hebrews 9:3, 10:20

Vineyard

The house of Israel - Isaiah 5:1-7; Jeremiah 12:10

Watchman Prophet, Preacher - Ezekiel 3:17; Isaiah 62:6

Waters

Afflictions, multitudes, ordinances - Psalm 69:1; Isaiah 8:7, 55:1

Wilderness Afflicted state - John 1:23; Revelation 12:6

Wine

Spiritual blessings, Divine judgments - Isaiah 25:6, 55:1; Psalm 60:3

Winepress Total destruction - Isaiah 63:3; Revelation 14:19

Wings

Protection, assistance - Exodus 19:4; Psalm 17:8

Woman City of Jerusalem, the greater set of Christians - Ezekiel 26:2, 3; Revelation 12:1

Yoke

Servitude, burden - Jeremiah 5:5; Lamentations 3:27; Matthew 11:29-30

Additional Study Materials
What does a rainbow symbolize in the Bible?
Does the Rose of Sharon represent JESUS?
What do NUMBERS mean in the Bible?
What does God's name represent?
© The Bible Study Site