TEETH

Definition

1.  Hebrew /v@ (shen) = tooth; v, the 21st letter of Hebrew alphabet, is pictorial for teeth.
2.  Incisors for biting (Prov 30:14; Mic 3:5), gnashing (Lam 2:16).
3.  Canines for tearing, piercing, and holding:  Hebrew touL=t^m= (metalle`oth) = from root for a worm, the coccus ilicis yielding scarlet colored dye; thus the red is associated with meat (and Red Planet) (Prov 30:14);  associated with Arab. ltg; the Aethiopic maltâht, jawbone (maxilla)1 (Job 29:17); canines of lions (Psa 58:6; Joel 1:6)
There is a generation whose teeth (incisors) are swords and their canines knives
To devour the poor from the Earth and the needy from among mankind. (Proverbs 30:14)

I broke the canines of the wicked
And made him drop the spoil out from his teeth. (Job 29:17)

4.  Bicuspids for crushing and gnawing (Num 24:8; Ezek 23:34; Joel 1:4)
5.  Molars for grinding (Eccl 12:3); epileptic grinding the teeth (Mk 9:18)
6.  Gnashing the teeth means to strike them together in anger or pain.

Symbolism

1.  The upper teeth symbolize Right Man and the lower teeth symbolize Right Woman.
2.  Sex (Job 31:10)
3.  Planets - the teeth correspond to the planets in order (ref. Biblical Astrology).
    a.  Sun - upper teeth
    b.  Moon - lower teeth
4.  Twins (SOS 4:2; 6:6)
5.  Wild children (from wrong man - wrong woman) upper and lower bite not aligned.
6.  Wisdom teeth symbolize marriageable age.
7.  Crowded teeth symbolize crocodile teeth (Job 41:14).  The crocodile is a symbol of Baal.
8.  Canines symbolize fangs and dog teeth.
9.  Sour grapes set the teeth on edge (Jer 31:29-30; Ezek 18:2) refers to unripe grapes, which are acidic and blunt or dull the mouth.  Eating sour grapes symbolizes sinning and reaping the results under the Law of Volitional Responsibility (Hos 8:7a).
10.  Gnashing the teeth:
     a.  Grate or grind the teeth in rage against (Job 16:9; Psa 35:16; 37:12; Lam 2:16; Acts 7:54).
     b.  Anguish and mourning (Matt 8:12; 13:42; Lk 13:28).
11.  White teeth are healthy and symbolize prosperity (Gen 49:12), and losing a tooth can make a person appear ugly (SOS 4:2).
12.  Teeth of beasts (and tyrants) symbolize death and destruction of devouring judgment (Deut 32:24; Psa 124:6).
13.  Skin of the teeth symbolizes a thin margin or narrow escape (Job 19:20).
14.  Teeth symbolize a jail.  Knocking out the tooth of a slave, therefore, required that he be freed (Ex 21:27).
15.  Breaking the teeth can symbolize a disabling injury (Job 4:10; Psa 3:7).
16.  An eye for eye and tooth for tooth symbolized justice (Ex 21:24; Deut 19:21).
17.  Taking one's flesh in his teeth can symbolize taking one's life into his own hands (Job 13:14).
18.  A bad tooth cannot be trusted and may symbolize a person who cannot be trusted (Prov 25:19).

References

1.  Keil, C. F., & Delitzsch, F. (2002). Commentary on the Old Testament. (Job 29:1517). Peabody, MA: Hendrickson.

Author:  Larry Wood,   Released January 20, 2011 - Revised Sept. 27, 2011

Top Author Comments Home