Meaning of Numbers in the Bible
The Number 613

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Meaning of Numbers: The Number 613

The possible meaning of the number 613 is derived partly from the Biblical calendar and the miraculous punishment King Nebuchadnezzar received from God.

Jewish tradition states that there were 613 commandments God gave to Moses.

"That the law of Moses contains 613 commandments is stated by R. Simlai, a Palestinian haggadist, who says (Mak. 23b):

"'Six hundred and thirteen commandments were revealed to Moses; 365 being prohibitions equal in number to the days of the year, and 248 being mandates corresponding in number to the bones of the human body.'" (Jewish Encyclopedia article on the 613 commandments).

Appearances of Number Six Hundred Thirteen

In 613 B.C. righteous King Josiah rules over the Kingdom of Judah. His reign started in 640 and lasts until 609 B.C. He is the last of the righteous sovereigns over Judah. The next four rulers, who will reign until 586, are generally considered bad or downright wicked!

The Kabbalah, which is a book devoted to Jewish mysticism, views every complete entity as divisible into 613 parts (Wikipedia info on 613).

613 has subtle appearances in the King James Bible. The sixth chapter of the Song of Solomon has 13 verses. Isaiah 6 also has 13 verses.

Number 613 and the Biblical Calendar

God commanded ancient Israel to keep a Sabbatical year, also known as the land sabbath (Leviticus 25:2 - 6). This year was the seventh in every seven-year cycle. Seven cycles of these sets of seven years (49 years total) were needed before the Jubilee year (50th year) could be celebrated.

613 B.C. marked the beginning of a Sabbatical year. The year began on the Feast of Trumpets (Rosh Hashanah), which started at sunset on September 3. This special year ended at sunset on September 23 in 612 B.C. The Sabbatical that started in 613 B.C. was the 113th that took place since the Israelites received their inheritance in the Promised Land in 1398 B.C.

Sunset on September 19 in 613 A.D. (Tishri 1 on the Hebrew calendar) also began a Sabbatical year. This special year ended at sunset on September 9 in 614. It was the 288th Sabbatical that took place since 1398 B.C.

The Feast of Trumpets, in 613 B.C., marked the end of the Biblical (Hebrew) civil year 3148 and the start of 3149.

The Feast of Trumpets, in 613 A.D., marked the end of Biblical (Hebrew) civil year 4761 and the beginning of civil year 4762.

Biblical (Hebrew) civil year 613 began at sunset on September 20 in 3149 B.C. which was the start of the Feast of Trumpets. The year ended at sunset on September 10 in 3148 B.C.

Heart of a Beast

Definition 613 in the Hebrew section of Strong's Concordance is the Chaldean word esur. It is found only in the writing of Daniel (twice) and Ezra (once). The word is translated as "band" or "imprisonment" in the King James Bible.

And whosoever will not do the law of thy God, and the law of the king, let judgment be executed speedily upon him, whether it be unto death, or to banishment, or to confiscation of goods, or to imprisonment (esur) (Ezra 7:26, KJV).

The book of Daniel uses esur when it records Nebuchadnezzar's words regarding God miraculously giving him the heart of a beast for seven years. This was done to show the world that it is the Lord that places people in positions of power as he sees fit (Daniel 4:17). It was also carried out to humble the king due to his vanity and pride (Daniel 4:30, 37).

Nevertheless leave the stump of his roots in the earth, even with a band (esur) of iron and brass, in the tender grass of the field; and let it be wet with the dew of heaven, and let his portion be with the beasts in the grass of the earth:

Let his heart be changed from man's, and let a beast's heart be given unto him; and let seven times pass over him . . . (Daniel 4:15 - 16, KJV).


Nebuchadnezzar as an Animal
Nebuchadnezzar
William Blake, 1795

More Info on Biblical Meaning of 613

There are no words in the Bible's original languages that are recorded exactly 613 times.

613 is the 112th prime number. It is preceded by 601 and 607 and comes before the primes 617 and 619.

According to Willmington's Complete Guide to Bible Knowledge, the fourth shortest Biblical writing in terms of words is the book of Jude. Although Wilmington's says that it has 613 words it doesn't state from which translation this count is derived. The King James translation of Jude has 608 words.

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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

Quotes related to the
meaning of the number 613 taken from
Holy Bible Faithful Version (HBFV)