English Português Español
eteacherbiblical.com
eTeacherBiblical Official Newsletter
Issue #74 - 04/11
eteacherbiblical.com
...have never felt any success in previous efforts to learn a language - now I do!..
Menu

Eli Dahan

About the Author

Online Store

Learn Biblical Hebrew

Learn Modern Hebrew

Biblical Hebrew Webinar

 
Language Toolbox

Free Biblical Hebrew Lessons

Torah Portions

Bible Study Tools

Biblical Names

 
Community
Facebook Our Facebook Page
Youtube Our YouTube
Twitter Our Twitter
Blog Our Blog
Boletín More Newsletters

 

 
Biblical Hebrew Webinar

Biblical Hebrew Webinar by eTeacherBiblical.com

 
Resources

Hebrew Names

Hebrew Phrases

Bible Names

 
Our Toolbar

Download Our Toolbar

 
Visit Our websites

eTeacherHebrew

eTeacherEnglish

eTeacherChinese

eTeacherGroup

 
Our Store

Babylon 9 and the Hebrew Even Shushan Dic' (includes Back up CD + Extended license Service)

The most comprehensive
Hebrew Dictionary. Revised
and updated for the 21st century, 
the Even Shoshan Dictionary is
the ultimate dictionary for both
contemporary (modern) and
Biblical Hebrew.

Get it NOW!

 
From our partners

Biblical Hebrew Webinar by eTeacherBiblical.com

 
From our partners

Israel Stamps Yearbook

Like eTeacherChinese

Learn Biblical Hebrew and win an iPad mini!

Call us - USA & Canada: 1-800-316-3783
Worldwide: +1-646-200-5822

The teraphim in the Old Testament

In some of the Hebrew Bible stories, we meet household gods or idols, known to us as the teraphim. Their usage was  probably dual: to interpret problems for specific people in a specific time or to replace G-d, though it is forbidden in the Ten Commandments.
 Their first appearance is in Genesis 31:19-21, as written:

Laban, Jacob and Rachel

"וְלָבָן הָלַךְ, לִגְזֹז אֶת-צֹאנוֹ; וַתִּגְנֹב רָחֵל, אֶת-הַתְּרָפִים אֲשֶׁר לְאָבִיהָ.  וַיִּגְנֹב יַעֲקֹב, אֶת-לֵב לָבָן הָאֲרַמִּי--עַל-בְּלִי הִגִּיד לוֹ, כִּי בֹרֵחַ הוּא.  וַיִּבְרַח הוּא וְכָל-אֲשֶׁר-לוֹ, וַיָּקָם וַיַּעֲבֹר אֶת-הַנָּהָר; וַיָּשֶׂם אֶת-פָּנָיו, הַר הַגִּלְעָד"

"When Laban had gone to shear his sheep, Rachel stole her father’s household gods. Moreover, Jacob deceived Laban the Aramean by not telling him he was running away. So he fled with all he had, crossed the Euphrates River, and headed for the hill country of Gilead"

Here the reason that Rachel stole them is in order to prevent her father, Laban, to discover where she, Jacob and the rest of their new family escaped.

The next story exemplifies the disorder and anarchy in the promised land in the time of the judges, when every man is doing as he pleases. In Judges 17 we are reading a story about a person named Micah, who decided to create for himself a house of G-d and also appointed a priest for this house. In this house Micah put also the household idols. when the priest and the idols were taken from his house, he responded with those words in Judges 18:24-

An idol

 
" וַיֹּאמֶר אֶת-אֱלֹהַי אֲשֶׁר-עָשִׂיתִי לְקַחְתֶּם וְאֶת-הַכֹּהֵן, וַתֵּלְכוּ--וּמַה-לִּי עוֹד..."

He replied, “You took the gods I made, and my priest, and went away. What else do I have?
 

The gods he has made are the teraphim. Even though the entire story with Micah describes the anarchy in those days, one can learn about a forbidden ritual, which is specific and local.
When King Saul wanted o kill David, he sent his messengers to kill him. Michal, who was Saul's daughter, warned David from the death as written in 1 Samuel 19:11-16-

The teraphim

 " וַיִּשְׁלַח שָׁאוּל מַלְאָכִים אֶל-בֵּית דָּוִד, לְשָׁמְרוֹ, וְלַהֲמִיתוֹ, בַּבֹּקֶר; וַתַּגֵּד לְדָוִד,מִיכַל אִשְׁתּוֹ לֵאמֹר, אִם-אֵינְךָ מְמַלֵּט אֶת-נַפְשְׁךָ הַלַּיְלָה, מָחָר אַתָּה מוּמָת.  וַתֹּרֶד מִיכַל אֶת-דָּוִד, בְּעַד הַחַלּוֹן; וַיֵּלֶךְ וַיִּבְרַח, וַיִּמָּלֵט.  וַתִּקַּח מִיכַל אֶת-הַתְּרָפִים, וַתָּשֶׂם אֶל-הַמִּטָּה, וְאֵת כְּבִיר הָעִזִּים, שָׂמָה מְרַאֲשֹׁתָיו; וַתְּכַס, בַּבָּגֶד.   וַיִּשְׁלַח שָׁאוּל מַלְאָכִים, לָקַחַת אֶת-דָּוִד; וַתֹּאמֶר, חֹלֶה הוּא.   וַיִּשְׁלַח שָׁאוּל אֶת-הַמַּלְאָכִים, לִרְאוֹת אֶת-דָּוִד לֵאמֹר:  הַעֲלוּ אֹתוֹ בַמִּטָּה אֵלַי, לַהֲמִתוֹ.  וַיָּבֹאוּ, הַמַּלְאָכִים, וְהִנֵּה הַתְּרָפִים, אֶל-הַמִּטָּה; וּכְבִיר הָעִזִּים, מְרַאֲשֹׁתָיו"
 

"Saul sent men to David’s house to watch it and to kill him in the morning. But Michal, David’s wife, warned him, “If you don’t run for your life tonight, tomorrow you’ll be killed.” So Michal let David down through a window, and he fled and escaped. Then Michal took an idol and laid it on the bed, covering it with a garment and putting some goats’ hair at the head.  When Saul sent the men to capture David, Michal said, “He is ill.” Then Saul sent the men back to see David and told them, “Bring him up to me in his bed so that I may kill him.” But when the men entered, there was the idol in the bed, and at the head was some goats’ hair"
 

One more time we see that this ritual is something that existed even in the house of the king of Israel. Only after the time of Hosea the prophet who mentioned those idols in his word (Hosea 3:4), we can see that there is a change in the people of Israel. Probably, until his time the usage of the teraphim was common as the usage of the bronze serpent was. Only in the days of King Josiah (2 Kings 23:24) and after the exile of the Israelites (Ezekiel 21:26, Zechariah 10:2) this ritual is being described as a sin.
 

In our Bible study this time, we have learned that the biblical word teraphim explained to us how the globalization and the influence of it were even in the old ages.As a Biblical Hebrew Teacher it is important for me to emphasize that also the Language among other topics had the same influence as well!
 

 
Main phrases of the post + transcription + translation

 

Hebrew

Transcription

Translation

תְּרָפִים

tərāpîm

idols

רָחֵל

rāchēl

Rachel

מִיכַל

kāl

Michal

דָּוִד

dāwid

David

כָּבֵד

bēd

Liver

אֵפוֹד

pôd

Vest 

 
Our Online Store
The Safra Bible - The Complete "Torah" Narrated in Hebrew
The Safra Bible-
The Complete "Torah" Narrated in HEBREW 
The CD series consists of the first five books of the Bible narrated
in Hebrew by Omer Frenkel, one of Israel’s leading narrators.This series
is meant to serve and help people to connect, and discover the base
of their Heritage, by listening to the Bible in its original language.
 
 
 
Independent Personal Pronouns

Independent Personal Pronouns

 
Watch more FREE Biblical Hebrew lessons!
Join our Biblical Hebrew course today!
 
 
Simchat Torah

Simchat Torah

 

 
 
Lech Lecha (Genesis 12:1-17:27)

 Lech Lecha (Genesis 12:1-17:27)

Join our Biblical Hebrew course today!

 
 
eTeacherBiblical Newsletter - Readers' Feedback

 

" I have found that your newsletters intriguing me more and more to learn another alphabet, so that I can begin to understand the nuances of the ancient Hebrew language... keep up the good work, so that, as the LORD God provides, I may someday take the study course with you good folks."

Gregg Pellegrino ,USA.
 
"I would like to thank you for the news letters that are very clear and easy to understand.."
 
Miriam Duncan.
 
" I enjoy and value the Newsletters. Nice to read and learn new perspectives."
 
Ester Blomerus
 
"I appreciate your crystal clear exposition of the Bible through your newsletters. It gives me in-depth understanding of the word of God by the correlation you make of events in the Bible in each topic discussed. I make sure I create time out of my busy schedules to go through each newsletter recieved within 24 hrs. Keep it up and God in His infinite mercies will continue to bless you, grant your heart desires and crown your effort with joy unspeakable. Regards ".
 
Manase Auta 
 

"The the Newsletter does a lot for my faith as a Young Christian seeking to know the fullness of God and draw wisdom from his Word...."

Phelelani Dludla 
 

" Thank you for your Newsletter and your teaching. It is much appreciated."

Ann Stephens
 
Please give us your feedback, we may publish it in our next Newsletter.
 
 
eTeacher Customer Stories

 

 
In eTeacher we put an emphasis not only on learning the language, but also on the learning experience and the social connection between students and teachers.
 
Read the personal stories, as told by our teachers and students
To read some of our past students testimonials click here
 
eTeacherBiblical - I'm Reading & Speaking My Heart's Language! 
Angela James ,Houston, Texas
Scott Booth:
 
 After my last visit to Israel I decided I wanted to learn
my hearts language, I searched on the internet and found
eTeacher. I signed up for the next available class and have
never looked back!! After a mere 16 weeks of class time,
I am able to read and write in Hebrew. 
 
 
 
Contact Us

Learn Biblical Hebrew: Click here to speak with an advisor

Or call us: USA & Canada: 1-888-640-1319, Worldwide: +972-3-7554141

Share & Bookmark