Meaning of Numbers: The Number 13
The number 13 is symbolic of rebellion and lawlessness in the Bible. Nimrod, the mighty hunter who was "before the Lord" (meaning he tried to take the place of God, Genesis 10:9), was generation 13 in Ham's line (Ham was one of Noah's three sons who survived the flood).
13 represents all the governments created by men, and inspired by Satan, in outright rebellion against the Eternal.
The phrase "valley of Hinnom" (or variation thereof) occurs in 13 places in Scripture. The valley was the scene of the evil-inspired rites of the pagan god Moloch (or Molech). The practices related to this false deity received some credibility when they were knowingly allowed by King Solomon (1Kings 11:7) in order to please his non-Israelite wives.
One of the several ways Molech was appeased and worshipped was through the sacrifice of children who, placed on the red-hot arms of the idol, were burned alive. The valley's tie to fire made for an apt backdrop of the ultimate punishment unrepentant and rebellious sinners will receive in the lake of fire (Revelation 19:20, 20:9 - 10, 14 - 15).
Appearances of the Number Thirteen
The longest name of a book, Thessalonians, is 13 characters.
The dragon, a symbol for Satan, is found 13 times in Revelation. Satan is behind all rebellion against God.
In Romans 1 the apostle Paul lists 23 characteristics of sinful people who have a debased or reprobate mind. The thirteenth characteristic is that they are haters of God (Romans 1:28 - 32).
Haman the Agagite has a decree signed on Nisan 13 (Nisan is the first month of the Hebrew sacred calendar) that on the Adar 13 (the last month of the sacred year) all Jews in the Persian Empire were to be killed (Esther 3:7 - 9). His plans are thwarted, however, by Queen Esther and Mordecai.
The destruction of Jericho is stamped with the number 13, for the city was marched around for six straight days, and on the seventh day, it was marched seven times, making thirteen total.
King Solomon spent a little more than seven years building Jerusalem's temple (1Kings 6:38). He, however, spent thirteen years building a home for himself (1Kings 7:1)!
There are at least 13 famines mentioned in the Bible (Genesis 12:10, 26:1, 41:54; Ruth 1:1; 2Samuel 21:1; 1Kings 18:1; 2Kings 4:38, 7:4, 25:3; Nehemiah 5:3; Jeremiah 14:1; Luke 15:14 and Acts 11:28.
In Mark 7 Jesus mentions thirteen things that defile a person. They are adulteries, fornications, evil thoughts, murders, covetousness, thefts, wickedness, licentiousness, guile, blasphemy, foolishness, pride and an evil eye (Mark 7:20 - 23).
Number 13 and God's Character
Moses had to hew out a second set of tablets for the Ten Commandments after the first was broken due to Israel's sins (Exodus 34:1). Carrying this new set, he went up Mount Sinai to have God inscribe his laws a second time. The Lord's presence then enveloped him like a cloud and, according to Jewish tradition (the Middot), proclaimed 13 forms of His mercy. These 13 holy attributes, taken from Exodus 34:6 - 7, are the following.
1) Compassion before a human sins.
2) Compassion after a human has sinned.
3) Mighty in compassion to give all creatures according to their need.
4) Offering mercy that humans may not be distressed.
5) Being gracious if humans are already in distress.
6) Slow to anger.
7) Plenteous in mercy.
8) Abundant in truth.
9) Keeping mercy unto thousands.
10) Forgiving iniquity.
11) Forgiving transgression.
12) Forgiving sin.
13) Willingness to pardon.
More Info on Biblical Meaning of 13
Ishmael, the first physical son of Abraham (through Hagar), was circumcised (which is cutting off the foreskin of a penis) when he was 13 years old (Genesis 17:25) as part of the then new covenant God made with Abraham (Genesis 17:1 - 22). This, however, was just the start.
Abraham also had every male born in his house (at least 318 individuals - Genesis 14:14), as well as all the males he owned, and any other males (whether an adult or child) he was responsible for, circumcised on the same day (Genesis 17:23 - 27)! In addition, even though he was 99 years old, Abraham himself submitted to circumcision.
In the Old Testament, the Biblical chapters of Psalm 79, 85, 96, 108, 140, Song of Solomon 6, 7, Isaiah 6, 27, 46, 55, Jeremiah 43, Daniel 12, Amos 4, Micah 2, 4, Nahum 2 and Zechariah 2 contain 13 verses in the King James translation.
In the New Testament, 1Corinthians 5, 8, 13, 1Thessalonians 3, Hebrews 8, 2John 1 and Revelation 8 all contain 13 verses in the KJV.
The books of 2Corinthians and Hebrews, both written by the Apostle Paul, have 13 chapters.