The Meaning of Numbers: The Number 44
Part of the meaning of the number 44 comes from the final part of Jesus' earthly ministry. This last part begins on the day he was crucified, which is Wednesday, April 5 in 30 A.D. (Nisan 14 in the Hebrew year 3790). It ends on the day he gives final instructions and ascends to God's right hand from the Mount of Olives (Acts 1:4 - 12). This momentous day is Thursday, May 18 (Iyar 27). The period between his crucifixion and his ascension is 44 days.
Herod Agrippa I, grandson of Herod the Great, rules over Galilee and Perea as Roman tetrarch starting in 39 A.D. Two years later, he is declared king of Judea. In 44 he decides to have James, one of the original twelve disciples and brother of John, put to death (Acts 12:1 - 2). James is the first apostle, called and ordained personally by Christ, to die for the faith.
Herod, witnessing how much it pleased the Jews to persecute Christians, arrests Peter. An angel, however, miraculously frees Peter from prison. Later in 44, Herod gives a speech to ambassadors from Tyre and Sidon. His oration is lauded, with the crowd shouting that he spoke like God. Failing to reject the praise and give the true God glory, Herod is killed by the angel of the Lord who allows him to be eaten by worms and perish (Acts 12:20 - 23).
Appearances of the number forty-four
Jesse, the name of King David's father, is recorded in 44 verses for 47 times total in the KJV. In the New Testament, he is mentioned in Matthew 1:5 - 6, Luke 3:32, Acts 13:22 and Romans 15:12.
Jesse produced a total number of seven sons (David was the youngest) and two daughters (1Samuel 17:12 - 13, 1Chronicles 2:13 - 16). His name is referenced in prophecies that predict the Messiah would come someday and ultimately rule over the world (Isaiah 11:1, 10, Romans 15:12).
Evangelism and the number 44
44 A.D. is one of the most eventful years in the early New Testament church's history. Other than what is mentioned above, it is the year Paul and Barnabas deliver much needed relief to those in Jerusalem and the surrounding area. The relief is needed as a three year famine, predicted by the prophet Agabus, has come upon the land (Acts 11:27 - 30).
Paul and Barnabas, after arriving back at their base in Syrian Antioch (where believers are first called Christians), are ordained as apostles (which is "one sent") by the local church (Acts 13:1 - 3). They then, in late spring, embark on an evangelistic tour that will become the first of Paul's five missionary journeys he will carry out during his ministry (Acts 13:4 - 52, 14:1 - 25). This journey will take the men roughly two and one half years to complete.
Additional info on the Biblical Meaning of 44
Both King Jehoram and King Jotham of Judah died at the age of 44. Jehoram assumed the throne at age 32 and ruled for eight years (853 to 841 B.C.). Jotham began to reign at age twenty-five, ruled for 15 years and was overthrown. He was allowed to live by King Ahaz, who deposed him, until he died at the age of forty-four.