Gemstones in the Bible

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Chrysolite is the seventh precious stone used to create the foundation of God's New Jerusalem (Revelation 21:20). Our English word is derived from the Greek word chrusolithos (Strong's Concordance #G5555). This word occurs only once in the entirety of Scripture. This gemstone is not mentioned either as being embedded in the High Priest's breastplate (Exodus 28:17 - 21, with parallel list in Exodus 39:10 - 13) or as one that Lucifer was created with (Ezekiel 28:13).

Strong's defines chrusolithos as a gold or yellow-colored gemstone ("gold stone"). Thayer's lexicon says it is golden colored. All ten versions of Scripture used for comparison purposes in this series translate the word as "chrysolite."

Chrysolite Folklore

The 1906 Jewish Encyclopedia states the following tradition regarding chrysolite's relationship with the Ark of the Covenant.

"Others said that there was in the Ark a figure of chrysolite or ruby with the head and tail of a shecat and with two wings. It would utter a moaning sound, and the Ark would rush toward the enemy with the Israelites following it. When it stayed, they stood and were at ease, and victory came" (article "Ark of the Covenant").

New Testament High Priests
Does the Ark of the Covenant still exist?
How much gold did King Solomon own?


The Chrysolite's color of golden yellow was associated with the sun and Sunday. A donkey engraved on the gem gave the wearer the ability to predict the future. On the other hand, if a vulture was etched on the stone it gave the person who possessed it the power to control demons and the winds.

This gemstone was also though to dispel various "terrors" of the night but only if it was worn in a setting of gold (Curious Lore of Precious Stones, pages 66 - 67, 133).

Additional Study Materials
Biblical meaning of the color yellow
Why was New Testament written in Greek?
What exactly IS black magic?

Gemstones in the Bible

1913 Catholic Encyclopedia
Curious Lore of Precious Stones, 1913 ed.
Diamonds, Pearls and Precious Stones, 1913 ed.
Gemstones in the Breastplate, 2008 ed.
Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History
United States Geological Survey - - Wikipedia

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