Meaning of Numbers in the Bible
The Number 11

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Biblical Meaning of Numbers
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Meaning of Numbers: The Number 11

The meaning of the number eleven is important in that it can symbolize disorder, chaos and judgment. In the Bible, 11 is used twenty-four times and "11th" can be found 19 times.

Coming after 10 (which symbolizes law and responsibility), eleven (11) represents the opposite, which is the irresponsibility of breaking the Law, which brings disorder and judgment.

In Genesis 11, men rebelled against God and built the tower of Babel. He judged them by confusing their language, resulting in chaos. Jehoiakim, one of the last kings over Judah, ruled for eleven years (609 to 598 B.C.). His successor, King Jehoiachin, rules for only three months before the Babylonians take control of Jerusalem.

King Joram (Jehoram in the King James), one of King Ahab's many sons, ruled over the Kingdom of Israel for 11 years from 852 to 841 B.C. (2Kings 3:1 - 8:15). He was a mostly bad king who was killed by God through Jehu as part of the Lord's vengeance against the house of Ahab (2Kings 9).

King Jehoiakim, the third from last ruler over the Kingdom of Judah, reigned for 11 years from 609 to 598 B.C. (2Kings 23:36). Neco of Egypt, after he had deposed and taken as prisoner King Jehoahaz, placed Jehoiakim on the throne as a puppet ruler (2Kings 23:36 - 24:7).

Jehoiakim has the distinction of experiencing King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon's first attack on Jerusalem and Judea in 605 B.C. It was during this attack that Daniel and his three friends were taken captive to Babylon (Daniel 1:1 - 3).

King Zedekiah, the last ruler over Judah, was also king for eleven years from 597 to 586 B.C. (2Kings 24:18 - 25:26). He was placed on the throne by the Babylonian Empire as a puppet ruler. Considered one of Judah's bad rulers, his kingdom came to an abrupt end in 586 when Nebuchadnezzar destroyed Jerusalem and burnt down its magnificent temple.

The apostle John saw 11 things in connection with the final judgment (Revelation 20:12 - 14).

Appearances of the Number Eleven

The Dead Sea Scrolls were discovered in 11 caves on the upper northwest shore of the Dead Sea, just thirteen miles east of Jerusalem. The total number of fragments found exceeds 95,000.

The eleven New Testament books that do not have any direct quotes from the Old Testament are Philippians, Colossians, 1Thessalonians, 2Thessalonians, Titus, Philemon, 1John, 2John, 3John, Jude and Revelation.

The third and fourth most referenced Old Testament passages, found in the New Testament, occur 11 times. These passages are Daniel 12:1 and Isaiah 6:1.

Several Kings of Judah got angry when confronted with words they did not want to hear including Asa (2Chronicles 16:10), Joash (2Chronicles 24:21), Uzziah (2Chronicles 26:19), Jehoiakim (Jeremiah 26:21) and Zedekiah (Jeremiah 32:3). Naaman (2Kings 5:12), captain of the King of Syria's army, felt insulted when he was told by the prophet Elisha to wash in the Jordan to be healed. The last of the 11 who did not want to hear the truth was Herod Antipas (Matthew 14:3).

There are eleven dukes of Edom (Edom was another name for Esau, Jacob's brother) in the Bible. Although closely related to the house of Israel, a bitter hatred existed between the two peoples. The dukes, or chiefs, of Edom were Timnah, Alvah, Jetheth, Aholibamah, Elah, Pinon, Kenaz, Teman, Mibzar, Magdiel, and Iram (Genesis 36:40 - 43).

Special Promises

The gospel of John records eleven very special promises.

1) A person can receive everlasting life by believing in the Son of God (John 3:16).

2) A person can have eternal life by eating, spiritually, Jesus' body (John 6:54).

3) By following Jesus you will not walk in darkness (John 8:12).

4) Those who continue in Jesus' word will be set free (John 8:31 - 32).

5) A person will truly be free if made so by Jesus (John 8:36).

6) God the Father will honor those who serve Christ (John 12:26).

7) Those who believe in Jesus will do greater deeds than he did (John 14:12).

8) Those who obey Christ's commands will receive the Holy Spirit (John 14:15 - 16).

9) Those who keep Jesus' commands will be loved by both him and God the Father (John 14:21).

10) Those who abide in Jesus will be fruitful (John 15:5).

11) The last of the promises is that a person can be Christ's friend if they obey him (John 15:14).

Number 11 and Jesus' Disciples

One of the greatest New Testament events is Jesus' last Passover in 30 A.D. Only 11 of the Lord's disciples took the bread and wine symbolic of Jesus' broken body and shed blood that made the New Covenant possible (Matthew 26:26 - 29). Judas, before the disciples took these symbols, had left the gathering in order to betray Christ to the Jewish religious leaders (John 13:21 - 30).

Eleven of Jesus' disciples, after his resurrection, used lots to determine who would replace Judas who had killed himself. A man named Matthias was chosen to be the twelfth apostle (Acts 1).

Jesus showed himself alive only three times to all 11 of his remaining apostles as a group. His first appearance was on April 16 in 30 A.D. when "doubting Thomas" had his doubts removed (John 20:26 - 27, 29). He then met with the group in Galilee sometime between April 17 and May 17 (Matthew 28:16 - 17). His last appearance before the 11 was on May 18 when, on the Mount of Olives, he ascended to the right hand of God (Acts 1).

Only three of the remaining eleven disciples after Jesus' resurrection had their writings included in the New Testament. These writers were Matthew, John and Peter.

More Info on Biblical Meaning of 11

Eleven Psalms were created for the sons of Korah. These were Psalm 42, 44 - 49, 84, 85, 87 and 88.

The Apostle Paul was converted on a road to Damacus in 33 A.D. (Acts 9). After his baptism he immediately begins to preach the gospel. It takes another eleven years, however, until 44 A.D., before he carries out his first missionary journey. This first evangelistic journey was undertaken with fellow evangelists Barnabas and John Mark (the gospel writer).

God commanded that during the third day of the Feast of Tabernacles that 11 bullocks be offered (Numbers 29:20). One theory conjectures they symbolize the six sons of Abraham through Keturah and the five sons of Esau (a grandson of Abraham) produced (1Chronicles 1:32 - 35). These 11 men, it is believed, represent added descendants of Abraham existing during Jesus' millennial reign on earth.

Scripture lists at least 11 kings or high-ranking officials who were offended when they were told the truth by one of God's servants. The men who offended themselves included the Pharaoh of Egypt (Exodus 10:28) and King Balak of Moab (Numbers 24:10). Kings Jeroboam (1Kings 13:4) and Ahab (1Kings 22:27) of Israel also got upset when told the truth.

Jesus was about 33 years (a multiple of eleven) when he died ("cut off" in Daniel 9:26) for the sins of mankind. The eleventh book, found in most versions of Scripture, is 1Kings. Moses was commanded to make 11 curtains for the tabernacle in the wilderness (Exodus 26:7 - 8).

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Biblical Meaning of Numbers
Introduction   -   Book of Numbers
Forgiveness Numbers  -  Abraham's Numbers
Mysterious Numbers of the Jubilee Year!
Sevens and the Worship of God
Numbers of Israel's Kings   -   Lucky 13!
Infinity   -   Zero
One Tenth   -   One Third   -   One Half
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Prophecy Numbers   -   Numerology
Creation's Numerics   -   Further Study

Series References
Number in Scripture: Its Supernatural
Design and Spiritual Significance

Some information on the
meaning of the number 11 derived from
Holy Bible Faithful Version (HBFV)