The Meaning of Numbers: Number 23
The number 23 derives part of its meaning from the fact that Adam and Eve produced twenty-three daughters according to the first century historian Josephus (Jewish tradition).
Tola served as a judge of Israel for a total number of 23 years, from 1102 to 1079 B.C. (Judges 10:1 - 2).
Psalm 23 is the most well known, popular and beloved of all the Psalms. King David, who wrote it, sings of God's protection, guidance, refreshment, abundant blessing and promise of eternal life to those who love him.
The Lord is my Shepherd; I shall not want. He makes me to lie down in green pastures; He leads me beside the still waters. He restores my soul; He leads me in the paths of righteousness for His name’s sake.
Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for You are with me; Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me . . . Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life, and I shall dwell in the house of the Lord forever (verses 1 - 4, 6 of Psalm 23).
Appearances of number twenty-three
In 609 B.C., after the death of King Josiah, his 23 year old son Jehoahaz succeeded him as ruler. His reign, however, would become one of the shortest in Judah's history. After being king for only three months, he is taken prisoner and dethroned by the Egyptian Pharaoh Neco. Jehoahaz, who would die as a captive in Egypt, is replaced by Jehoiakim (2Kings 23:31 - 34).
Jezebel is perhaps the most evil woman mentioned in God's word. She is reference twenty-three times in God's word. Compare this to Mary, Jesus' mother, who is mentioned by name only nineteen times!
The book of 2Timothy is one of the most personal epistles written by the Apostle Paul. This book mentions 23 distinct people, twenty of which are not mentioned anywhere else in the New Testament (Encyclopedia of Bible Facts).
Number 23 and war
In at least one instance, the number 23 conveys the meaning that a special group of people is reserved by God for his service and therefore ineligible to fight. On God's command, Moses instituted a count of all the men in Israel who were twenty years old or older (all those who could go to war, Num. 26:1 - 2). It was discovered, a short time before Moses' death, that there were 601,730 males among the people.
One special group, however, was not counted toward those who would be eligible to fight the enemies of Israel. The tribe of Levi was consecrated to serving the Lord. They represent substitutes to God's claim of all the firstborn in Israel when he saved them, and not the Egyptians, from the death angel (Num. 3:12 - 13). Counted separately, it was found that twenty-three thousand (23 x 1000) males, one month of age or above, were Levites (26:62).
Additional info on Biblical Meaning of 23
Genesis 39 and 40, as well as Ezekiel 13 and 14, contain 23 verses. Several other chapter also contain this many verses such as Exodus 5 and 33, Leviticus 24, and others.
A man named Jair (Num. 32:41, 1Chronicles 2:22), seemingly by force of arms, took possession of twenty-three cities in the land of Gilead. The area of Gilead, originally given by God to the tribe of Manasseh as an inheritance, was known for its balm made from a secretion of the balsam tree.
Jair renamed several of the cities he took after himself (e.g. Bashanhavoth-jair or the "towns of Jair," see Deuteronomy 3:14). One of the Judges of Israel, also named Jair, may have been one of his descendants (Judges 10:3 - 5).
Mordecai, on Sivan 23, with the permission of Persia's king, had a decree written that gave Jews protection from Haman's inspired edict for their destruction (Esther 3:10 - 11, 8:9 - 11). The Jews, in the lands controlled by the Persians, were allowed to defend themselves and to take any spoil from those who sought to harm them.