BREASTS

Definition

1.  Hebrew shad (dv^)  = female breast  (Gen 49:25; Ezek 16:7; 23:21)

2.  Hebrew El Shaddai (yD^v^ la@) = God Almighty (Gen 17:1; 28:3; 49:25; Ex 6:3)

    a.  Hebrew Shaddai (yD^v^) = almighty; omnipotent (LXX, pantokrator, all-mighty); sovereign; from Arabic tadyun, breast (BDB)1; connected with the Akkadian, sadu, "mountain."  The ending -ai denotes an adjectival suffix (TWOT)2; see also Psa 121:1–2.

    b.  El Shaddai was revealed to:  Abraham, Gen. 17:1; Isaac, Gen 28:3; Jacob Gen 35:11, 43:14; 48:3; all, Ex. 6:3; Ezekiel, Ezk 10:5.

    c.  Hebrew Shaddai (yD^v^) (Genesis 49:25; Ruth 1:20, 21; Job 5:17; 6:4; 8:3; 13:3; 40:2)  occurs 48 times - 7 times with Hebrew El (la@).2

    d.  The mountains symbolize female breasts and God Almighty.  God Almighty is the omnipotent one over all, who comforts His children like a mother comforts the child on her breast.  God comforts and provides security for the believer just as the mother does for the child.

3.  Hebrew dad (dD^), du. cstr. dade (yd@D^) = breasts of woman, teats, nipples; (pictorial) (Prov 5:19; Ezek 23:3, 21).  The Hebrew letters represent the female breasts with the point in the center of the letter (Daghes) representing the nipple.

4.  Hebrew dodim (<d!D)) refers to drinking the fill of erotic love (Prov 7:18).

Come, let us have our fill of sex until morning
And delight ourselves in making love (Proverbs 7:18)
"Sex" is the Hebrew dodim (<d!D)), which is plural.

Symbolism

1.  The breasts symbolize love.  Breasts are aligned along the Love, Y-axis.

2.  Breasts symbolize:

    a.  The double blessing of child of Right Man - Right Woman, "Blessings of the breasts and of the womb" (Gen 49:25).

    b.  Bond of unity between mother and child (Psa 22:9).

For You are He who brought me out from the womb;
You caused me to trust on my mother's breasts. (Psalm 22:9)
    c.  The baby vs. weaned child (Isa 11:8; 28:9; 1 Pet 2:2).
"To whom shall He teach knowledge?
And to whom shall He interpret the message to us?
Those just weaned with milk?
Those just taken from the breast? (Isaiah 28:9)

Like newborn babies, eagerly desire the pure (unadulterated) milk of the word, that by it you may grow as a result of Salvation, (1 Peter 2:2)

3.  Breasts are a witness of female maturity (Ezek 16:7); prepubescent – no breasts (SOS 8:8).
"I made you numerous like plants of the field. Then you grew up, became tall, and reached the age for ornaments of cheeks; your breasts expanded and your (pubic) hair had grown. Yet you were naked and bare. (Ezekiel 16:7)

We have a little sister;
She has no breasts.
What shall we do for our sister
In the day she is spoken for? (Song of Solomon 8:8)

4.  Breasts symbolize puberty, capability of female erotic sensuality (Ezek 23:3, 21).
And they practiced prostitution in Egypt.  They practiced prostitution in their youth.  There their breasts (shad, (dv^)) were squeezed erotically; and there were fondled the teats (dade, (yd@D^)) of their virginity. (Ezekiel 23:3)

Thus, you longed for the lewdness of your youth when the Egyptians fondled your teats (dade, (yd@D^)) because of your youthful breasts (shad, (dv^)). (Ezekiel 23:21)

5.  Breasts are a witness of love for Right Man (SOS 1:13), twins of a gazelle feeding among the lilies (SOS 4:5; 7:3), and prostitution (Hos 2:2).
"My beloved is to me a pouch of myrrh
Which lies all night between my breasts. (Song of Solomon 1:13)
The pouch of myrrh symbolizes the male genitals.
"Your two breasts are like two fawns,
Twins of a gazelle,
Which feed among the lilies. (Song of Solomon 4:5)
The beautiful form of the gazelle is sexy.  The lilies symbolize the female genitals.
"Contend with your mother, contend!
For she is not my wife, and I am not her husband;
And let her put away her prostitution from her face,
And her adultery from between her breasts, (Hosea 2:2)
Hosea's wife was a prostitute.  He tells his children to contend with their mother.  She needs to stop her prostitution and her adultery, which is said to be between her breasts.

6.  Breasts are involved in erotic love-making (Ezek 23:8) and have intoxicating power over men (Prov 5:19-20).

"And she did not leave behind her prostitution since coming out from Egypt because in her youth men had sexual relations with her; and they squeezed her virgin teats (dade, (yd@D^)); and they poured out their fornication upon her." (Ezekiel 23:8)
While in Egypt, Israel engaged in ritual prostitution under the power of the Prostitute of Babylon, which involved fornication.
As a loving hind and a graceful ibex, let her (Right Woman's) breasts satisfy (intoxicate) you at all times; be exhilarated (drunk, high) always with her love. (Proverbs 5:19)
Both the hind (doe) and ibex (mountain goat) are beautiful, sexy creatures.  The Right Woman is called a "loving hind" and "a graceful ibex."  Her breasts satisfy her Right Man, where "satisfy" is the Hebrew ravah (hw*r*), meaning to intoxicate, make drunk sexually.  The woman's breasts are a handle to her sexual response.  However, men, in general, are succors for women's breasts.  They are mesmerized by them for many reasons, including lust, emotional illusions, and fetishes.  The Right Man will be exhilarated with the woman's love, where "exhilarated" is the Hebrew shagah (hg*v*), meaning to reel or swerve like a drunk with a high.
And why should you, my son, be exhilarated with a stranger, and embrace the bosom of a foreign prostitute?  (Proverbs 5:20)
Here, David is asking his son, Solomon, a rhetorical question of why would he want to be exhilarated by making love to a stranger.  A stranger is a woman other than Right Woman.  Why would he want to embrace the bosom of a "foreign prostitute"?  A "foreign prostitute" means a foreign woman other than Right Woman, an adulteress; a prostitute, since foreigners were prostitutes (Prov 2:16; 7:5; 6:24; 23:27).

7.  Breasts are symbolized by fruit, such as melons, clusters of dates of the palm tree (SOS 7:7), and grapes (SOS 7:8).

"Your stature is like a palm tree,
And your breasts are like its clusters. (Song of Solomon 7:7)
Solomon compared his latest bride to a palm tree, which symbolized a sexy female.  Her breasts were like clusters of dates of the date palm.
“I said to myself, ‘I will climb the palm tree,
I will take hold of its fruit stalks.’
Oh, may your breasts be to me like clusters of the vine,
And the scent of your breath like apples, (Song of Solomon 7:8)
Climbing the palm tree symbolizes having sex.  Here the breasts (Hebrew shad, (dv^)) are symbolized by clusters of grapes.  The thin skin of grapes symbolizes delicate breasts and the dark color may be associated with the nipples.  The "scent of your breath like apples" connotes close proximity of intimacy.

8.  Breasts are symbolized by towers of a wall, which are strongholds (SOS 8:10); thus the breasts are erogenous strongholds.

I was a wall,
And my breasts were like towers;
Then I became in his eyes
Like one who finds peace. (Song of Solomon 8:10)
The Shulammite woman describes herself as a wall, which is a boundary of security.  She compares her breasts to the towers of the wall.  Just as towers are strongholds in a wall, the female breasts are erogenous strongholds.  The Shulammite became in the eyes of her Right Man "like one who finds peace."  "Peace" is the Hebrew shalom, which refers to Spiritual Rapport (Isa 54:10), as symbolized by Jeshurun (Deuteronomy 32:15; 33:26; Isaiah 44:2; Romans 15:29; Ephesians 1:23; 3:19; 4:13) and to Harmonious Rapport with Right Woman (Gen 17:15).  The root of the Hebrew shalom is the same root of Solomon and Shulammite.

9.  Mountains symbolize breasts (SOS 2:8, 17; 4:6, 8; 8:14).

Song of Solomon 4:6, 8

6 “Until the cool of the day
When the shadows flee away,
I will go my way to the mountain of myrrh
And to the hill of frankincense.
8 With me out of Lebanon, my bride,
With me out of Lebanon, you come.
You look down from the top of Amana,
From the top of Senir and Hermon,
From the dens of lions,
From the mountains of leopards.

Solomon is contemplating a honeymoon with the Shulammite woman in the mountains, which symbolize the female breasts.  "Out of Lebanon" refers to origin or source in the mountains of Lebanon.  Lebanon is the name of the mountain range northwest of Israel.  The name probably came from the whiteness of its cliffs.  "You look down from the top of Amana."  Amana is that range where the springs of the source  of the Amana River are located.  "From the top of Senir and Hermon" - Senir is the mountain range north of Damascus.  Hermon is the southern-most mountain of the Anti-Libanus chain were the springs of the source of the Jordan River are located.3  The implied clear streams rushing down the mountains symbolize female sexual response.

10.  The right breast symbolizes the spiritual, and the left breast symbolizes the temporal.

11.  The Lord carried Israel in the wilderness like a father caretaker for his son, where the father assumes the role of a nursing mother (Deut 1:31; Act 13:18; Num 11:12, 14).

and in the wilderness where you have seen how the LORD your God carried you, just as a man carries his son, in all the way that you went until you came to this place.' (Deuteronomy 1:31)
Moses reminded the congregation of Israel that the Lord, who was their caretaker in the wilderness, was like father carrying his son and assuming the role of a nursing mother.  "Carried" is the Hebrew nasa', meaning to lift up and carry.  The word in the Septuagint is the Greek trophophoreo (trofoforevw), meaning to carry in one's arms, i.e. care for someone (tenderly), as a nursing mother.  However, when Deuteronomy 1:31 is quoted in Acts 13:18, the word used is the Greek tropophoreo (tropoforevw), meaning to bear or put up with (someone's) manner, moods, etc.  Scholars of original texts have not been able to which word is correct in Acts 13:18.  Regardless, the implication of Deuteronomy 1:31 in both Hebrew and Greek is a father carrying his son in the role of a caretaker.  Thus, the Lord provided for Israel in the wilderness as a woman provides for her nursing child

Moses understood the analogy of carrying the Lord carrying the child in the wilderness.  When the people of Israel began to complain about the food and other things, Moses took the problem up with God.  He said:

Have I conceived all this people, or have I given them birth, that You should say to me, "Carry them in your bosom as the nurse carries the suckling child to the Land, which You promised to their fathers? (Numbers 11:12)
Unlike those who were just complaining, Moses took the problem to God.  He compared himself to a woman caretaker of children.  He asked if he had conceived them or given them birth.  If that were the case, then the Lord might be justified in requiring Moses to carry them on his bosom as the nurse carries the suckling child.  However, Moses was not the father.  God was their Father and Creator, and it was His duty to take care of them (Ex. 4:22; Isa. 63:16).  Thus, Moses concluded:
“I alone am not able to carry all this people, because it is too burdensome for me. (Numbers 11:14)
Because the Father cares for his children like a nursing mother, God stepped in to handle the problem.  God the Father was the caretaker of Israel through the wilderness wanderings.

12.  Breasts symbolize motherly love, compassion, comfort, and tender care of a nursing mother (Isa 49:15, 22-23; 60:4; 66:10-13).

The Lord Will Not Forget Israel

The Tribulation is symbolized by Virgin Israel in labor.  She will give birth to a son and hide in Egypt until the Second Advent, when her Son will return to rule the nations (Rev 12:1-6).  Her sons and daughters will be the children of the Millennium who must be nursed.  When the suffering is greatest during the Tribulation, Zion (referring to Jerusalem and Israel) will say the Lord has forsaken her.

But Zion said, “The LORD has forsaken me,
And the Lord has forgotten me.” (Isaiah 49:14)
The Lord will answer the complaint with the nursing mother analogy.
Can a woman forget her nursing child
So that she should not have compassion on the son of her womb?
Even though these (mothers) may forget, yet I will not forget you. (Isaiah 49:15)
The most perfect love relationship exists between mother and nursing child.  Just as the mother cannot forget her nursing child or not have compassion on the son of her womb, the Lord will not forget Israel.

Nursing Children Regathered to Israel

Nursing sons and daughters will be carried in the arms during the return from Babylonian captivity and later in the return of the Diaspora to Israel in the Millennium.

Thus says the Lord God, “Behold, I will lift up My hand to the nations,
And set up My standard to the peoples;
And they will bring your sons in their bosom,
And your daughters will be carried on their shoulders. (Isaiah 49:22)
When the Lord calls to the Gentile nations for the return of the Jews from captivity, they will bring them in their bosom and in their arms resting on their shoulders back to Jerusalem.  This symbolizes nursing children.
“And kings will be your foster-fathers,
And their queens your nurses.
They will bow down to you with their faces to the ground,
And lick the dust of your feet;
And you will know that I am the Lord;
Those who expectantly wait for Me will not be put to shame. (Isaiah 49:23)
The Gentile nations will serve Israel in the Millennium.  Kings will be like foster-fathers, and queens like nurses.
Lift up your eyes round about and see;
They all gather together, they come to you.
Your sons will come from afar,
And your daughters will be carried in the arms (by a nurse).  (Isaiah 60:4)
Thus, the regathering of Israel at the Second Advent will be symbolized by bringing nursing children in the arms.

Happiness with Jerusalem

In the Millennium Jerusalem will be symbolized by a nursing mother.  The prefabricated city with walls of precious stones will be the beautiful and glorious capital of the world where the Lord Jesus Christ reigns as King.

Be superabundantly Happy with Jerusalem and rejoice for her, all you who love her; Be delightfully Happy with her, all you who mourn over her.  (Isaiah 66:10)
Those who love Jerusalem will include Jewish and Gentile believers, along with the Church and Old Testament saints in Resurrection bodies, in the Millennium.  Those "who mourn over her" are those who have genuine concern and empathy for her suffering.

Mother Jerusalem

In the Millennium, Israel will be symbolized by a mother, who nurses her children.  Her children will be Jewish and Gentile believers who survived the Tribulation and populate the Millennial Earth.

That you may nurse and be satisfied with her consoling breasts,
That you may sip and be delighted from her abundant glory. (Isaiah 66:11)
The citizens of the Millennium will be consoled by the breasts of Jerusalem.  Just as a child is delighted with the mother's breasts, the citizens of the Millennium will sip and be delighted from Jerusalem's abundant glory.

Peace and Prosperity of Jerusalem

For thus says the Lord, "Behold, I extend peace to her like a river,
And the glory of the nations like an overflowing stream,
And you shall nurse; you shall be carried on the side, and fondled upon the knees. (Isaiah 66:12)
"Peace" is the Hebrew shalom, which means peace and prosperity.  Peace and prosperity will flow abundantly to Israel as described in Isa 48:18.  The glory of the Gentile nations (Isa 49:23) will overflow to Jerusalem.  The Gentile nations will serve Israel.  "And you shall nurse" means the children of Jerusalem (Jewish and Gentile believers) will have Happiness and abundance like a child on the mother's breasts.  "Carried on the side" refers to an infant being carried in the arms.  And "fondled on the knees" refers to playing with a child to entertain it.

Comfort of Mother

As a man whom his mother comforts; thus, I will comfort you;
In Jerusalem, you shall be comforted. (Isaiah 66:13)
The children are personified as a man who returns from slavery in the world to the maternal arms of his home in Jerusalem.

13.  Sucking the milk of nations symbolizes Israel's prosperity in the Millennium (Isa 60:16).

“You will also suck the milk of nations,
And will suck the breast of kings;
Then you will know that I, the LORD, am your Savior,
And your Redeemer, the Mighty One of Jacob. (Isaiah 60:16)
Zion (Jerusalem) will suck the milk of the Gentile nations in the Millennium.  The nations and their kings will serve Jerusalem, just as a mother or nurse gives the milk of her breasts to a child.  And the Jews of Jerusalem will be nourished and prosper with great Happiness.

14.  The pastor feeding the congregation is analogous to a nursing mother (1 Cor 3:1-2; 1 Thess 2:7; Heb 5:13; 1 Pet 2:2).

1 Corinthians 3:1-2
1 And I (Paul), brethren, could not speak to you as to spiritual individuals, but as to carnal individuals, as babies in Christ.
2 I gave you milk to drink, not solid food; for you were not yet able to handle it.  Indeed, not even yet at the present time are you able.
The Apostle Paul was unable to teach the Corinthians on a spiritual level because they were carnal, meaning under the influence of the Old Sin Nature and not filled with the Holy Spirit.  Further, they were spiritual babies in Christ.  Since they were very immature, Paul could only teach them simple basics, as symbolized by milk for babies.  He couldn't give them advanced doctrine, as symbolized by solid food.
But we were babes among you, even as a nursing mother tenderly cares for her own children. (1 Thessalonians 2:7)
"Babes" is the Greek nepios, for an infant, baby, or small child.  It does not mean gentle, which is the Greek epios that occurs in less accurate manuscripts, such as Textus Receptus of the King James Version.  "Babes" in context means that Paul, Silvanus, and Timothy were themselves dependent upon God's Grace provision.  Rather than exercising Apostolic authority over the Thessalonians, they humbled themselves like babies under God.  In teaching the new converts, they were like a nursing mother tenderly caring for her own children.  The Greek thalpo means literally to keep warm or brood over and comes to mean to provide tender care.

15.  The mother nursing the child symbolizes the husband providing nourishment and tender care for his wife (Eph 5:28-29).

Ephesians 5:28-29
28 So husbands ought also to love their own wives as their own bodies. He who loves his own wife loves himself; 29 for no one ever yet hated his own flesh, but nourishes and provides tender care for it, just as Christ also the Church,
The husband in Marriage must take care of his own body and his wife's body, since the bodies of the husband and wife belong to each other (ref. Right Man - Right Woman).4  "He who loves his own wife loves himself."   Loving one's own body refers to self-esteem.  Self-esteem is the most basic identity of self, or personality identification.  It is self-love, which a person had as a baby in relation to his mother before he became aware of his own separate identity and others.  However, verse 28 is not about human self-esteem.  It is about Spiritual Self-Esteem.5  Human self-esteem in the verse is only a metaphor for Spiritual Self-Esteem, which is the confidence of the mature believer in living the Spiritual life.

Not hating one's own flesh represents the Spiritual Self-Esteem of the husband.  "But nourishes and provides tender care for it."  "Provides tender care" is again the Greek thalpo, which corresponds to a nursing mother caring for her own children (1 Thess 2:7).  Just as the nursing mother must provide tender care for her children, the husband must do the same for himself and his wife.  Just as the husband would nourish and provide tender care for his own body from his human self-esteem, he should nourish and provide tender care for his wife from Spiritual Self-Esteem.  This is beyond food and medical care.  It includes Spiritual food and care, which the husband must supply as the leader of the relationship.

16.  The husband nourishing and providing tender care for his wife symbolizes the provision of Christ for the Church.

The last phrase of Ephesians 5:29 about the husband providing nourishment and tender care for his wife is "just as Christ also the Church."  Thus, the Lord Jesus Christ provides for the Church as the husband provides for his wife.  The nourishment, which Christ provides, is not only physical sustenance but also the Spiritual food of Bible Doctrine, beginning with the Gospel for Salvation.  This is symbolized by the function of Jesus Christ as Savior and by the Savior Planet.  Tender care provided by Christ includes the provision for the Spiritual life that also corresponds to planets as shown in the table.
 
 

Christ's Provision for the Church (Eph 5:29)

Provision
Type
Planet
Scripture
Nourishment Gospel, Bible Doctrine Savior 1 Cor 3:1-2; Heb 5:12-13; 1 Pet 2:2
Tender Care Light (enlightenment) Sun Jn 8:12; 2 Cor 4:6; 1 Jn 1:7
. Love Moon 1 Cor 13:12-13; Eph 3:19; 1 Jn 4:19
. Sanctification Redeemer Eph 5:26; Tit 2:14; 1 Pet 1:18-19; Heb 1:3; 1 Jn 1:9
. Clothing (ECS, Robe of +R) Last Adam Isa 61:10; Eph 5:27; 1 Pet 1:19; Rev 3:18
. Security God of Covenants Rom 8:1; Ja 4:11-12
. Comfort, peace, rest Mediator 2 Cor 1:3; Rom 5:1; Col 1:20; Heb 4:9
. Guidance (Leadership) Morning Star Heb 12:2; 2 Pet 1:19; Rev 22:16
. Discipline Red Planet Heb 12:4-11
. Authority Almighty God 1 Tim 6:15; Rev 2:26

17.  Hierarchical Summary

The hierarchy of relationships beginning with Mother/Child is:

  1. Mother/Child
  2. Husband/Wife
  3. Lord/Israel
  4. Christ/Church
The Mother/Child relationship symbolizes Husband/Wife, which symbolizes Lord/Israel, which symbolizes Christ/Church.

The Mother/Child relationship is physical and soulish, since it includes love.  The Husband/Wife relationship is both temporal and spiritual.  But the Lord/Israel and Christ/Church relationships are Spiritual.  They even involve the planets and stars above.  This can be difficult to interpret.  Whereas, the figurative (or soulish) meaning can often be deduced from the physical meaning, the spiritual meaning may be more elusive.

Transition to the spiritual is not a logical extension of the physical and figurative (soulish).  So, the spiritual relationship between Christ and the Church does not bear a one-to-one correspondence to the relationship between husband and wife or mother and child.  The relationships between mother and child and husband and wife are stepping stones to advance in spiritual understanding to Christ and the Church.  Going forward from mother/child to husband/wife to Christ/Church is useful, but going backward will lead to a convolution and confusion.

Cursing

1.  Beating the breasts symbolizes agony and mourning (Isa 32:12; Nah 2:7; Lk 18:13; 23:27, 48).

2.  Cursing of miscarriages and dry breasts (Hos 9:14).

3.  Cruelty of refusing to nurse the young (Lam 4:3).

4.  Snatching an orphan from the breasts (Job 24:9).

Lawlessness and Legalism

1.  The body (including breasts) of Right Woman belongs to Right Man just as the body of Right Man belongs to Right Woman (1 Cor 7:4).  Therefore, the breasts must not be used in illicit sexual activity, including fornication and adultery (Prov 5:20).

2.  The Bible does not prohibit nudity, but society cannot tolerate it.  So the Christian will have to decide with the help of the Holy Spirit where to draw the line over exposing the breasts (1 Cor 10:29).  What a Christian is free to do may not be worth the cost when the legalists decide to make a federal case out of it (Gal 5:13).

3.  The breasts are a woman's own private parts.  It is wrong for another person to violate that privacy, such as through gossip or public exposure (Prov 20:19).

4.  Sex lust, whether from looking at or exposing the breasts, is a sin (Matt 5:28; 1 Jn 2:16).

5.  Making sexual passes outside of marriage is a sin, whether or not the breasts were involved (Eph 5:3-4).

6.  God Judges all sexual sins personally (Heb 13:4).  No one else, including the state, has a right to interfere.  God will deal with those who interfere.

7.  The breasts symbolize love.  However, the lawless will use them as an opportunity for lust, and the legalists will gossip about them.
 

References

1.  Brown, F., Driver, S. R., & Briggs, C. A. (2000). Enhanced Brown-Driver-Briggs Hebrew and English Lexicon (electronic ed.) (995). Oak Harbor, WA: Logos Research Systems.
2.  Harris, R. L., Harris, R. L., Archer, G. L., & Waltke, B. K. (1999). Theological Wordbook of the Old Testament (electronic ed.) (907). Chicago: Moody Press.
3.  Keil, C. F., & Delitzsch, F. (2002). Commentary on the Old Testament. (SOS 4:8). Peabody, MA: Hendrickson.
4.  Larry Wood.  Right Man - Right Woman.
5.  Larry Wood.  Spiritual Self-Esteem.

Author:  Larry Wood,   Released January 30, 2011

Top Author Comments Home