The Meaning of Numbers: The Number 300
Although the meaning of the number 300 is not entirely clear from Scripture, it does have a relationship with several well-known people in God's word.
Samson, angry that the father of a Philistine woman he married gave her to someone else (Judges 15:1 - 2), decides to get revenge. He catches 300 foxes and then, in pairs, ties their tails, along with a small torch, together with a cord. He then lets them loose among Philistine farmland. This causes not only the recently harvested crops, but also that which was yet to be harvested, to be consumed by fire (verse 5)!
Enoch, representing the seventh generation of patriarch on the earth, was 65 years old when he gave birth to his firstborn son Methuselah (Genesis 5:21). Scripture states he walked with God another three hundred years after this event until he was taken to another location on the earth (verses 22 - 24). Read our fascinating article on where are Enoch and Elijah for more information.
Appearances of the number three hundred
Number 300 plays a role in the reconciliation of Joseph with his brothers and the migration of the entire house of Israel into Egypt. This migration will save the Israelites from the punishing famine they have been experiencing in the land of Canaan.
Joseph, sold into slavery by jealous brothers (Genesis 37), is blessed by God. He ultimately becomes the second most powerful Egyptian (chapter 41). After a tearful reunion in Egypt with his brothers twenty-two years later, he sends them back to Canaan. The purpose of the trip is to inform their father Jacob he is alive and to have the family migrate and live near him. Each of Jacob's sons is given a few changes of clothes for the trip. Benjamin, however, the youngest brother, is given 300 pieces of silver and five changes of clothes (45:22).
Before his brothers leave, however, Joseph has a tearful reunion with his youngest brother Benjamin and gives him a special gift of 300 pieces of silver (Genesis 45:22).
Number 300 and Gideon's Army
The movie "300," released in 2007, was a fictionalize account of the battle of Thermopylae. The historic battle, which took place over land and sea in 480 B.C., pitted a Greek force against the mighty Persian Empire.
The Greeks, on land, were able to hold off the Persians for seven days. Their remaining force, however, of roughly 1,400 men (the Spartans also had 1,100 others fighting with them) was then decimated.
More than 650 years earlier, however, the original battle of "three hundred" took place in the great battlefield of Palestine known as the valley of Jezreel! It is here that Gideon, who is called by God to free the Israelites from oppression, fought against the Midianites and was victorious.
How awesome was Gideon's victory? Modern research states the Greeks, at Thermopylae, had an army of 7,000 men while the Persians, at most, fielded 300,000 troops (Battle of Thermopylae, Encyclopedia Britannica). This means the Greeks had a force 43 times smaller than Persia. Gideon's army of 300, however, went up against a 135,000 strong Midian led army that was 450 times bigger than it was and still won the war (Judges 8:10, 28)!
More info on Biblical Meaning of 300
A woman in Bethany, just before Jesus' death, anoints him with precious oil. Some of the disciples who see this complain that the ointment could have been sold for over three hundred silver coins and the money given to the poor (Mark 14:3 - 7). Jesus gently chides the disciples for their criticism of the woman's good work.
How is the number 300 related to Solomon's incredible wealth? He could afford the creation of three hundred golden full body shields with an estimated value, in today's money, of $66,000 each (1Kings 10:17).
Solomon's wealth also led him to afford as many women as he pleased. He had 700 wives who were women who could bear an heir to the throne. He also had an astonishing 300 concubines (1Kings 11:3)! A concubine is a female taken on as a sexual partner. Such women in the Bible were considered of a lower status compared to wives. His harem of 1,000 females, many of which were non-Israelites, was not God's will (Deuteronomy 7:1 - 4, 17:17). They ultimately led the king into worshipping pagan gods (1Kings 11:1 - 6) which led to Israel splitting after his death.
The dimensions of Noah's Ark, mandated by God, was 300 cubits long, 50 cubits wide and 30 cubits high. A cubit was considered the distance between a man's elbow and the top of his middle finger. Biblical commentaries place the length of a cubit anywhere from 17.5 to 21.5 inches (44.4 to 54.6 centimeters).