Smith's Bible Dictionary - D



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DABAREH


(pasture), (Joshua 21:28) or DABERATH, a town on the boundary of
Zebulun. (Joshua 19:12) Under the name of Debarieh it still lies at
the western foot of Tabor.


DABBASHETH


(a hill-place), a town on the boundary of Zebulun. (Joshua
19:11)


DABERATH


[See DABAREH]


DAGON


(a fish), apparently the masculine, (1 Samuel 5:3,4) correlative of
Atargatis, was the national god of the Philistines. The most famous
temples of Dagon were at Gaza, (Judges 16:21-30) and Ashdod. (1 Samuel
5:5,6; 1 Chronicles 10:10) The latter temple was destroyed by Jonathan in
the Maccabaean wars. Traces of the worship of Dagon likewise appear in the
names Caphar-dagon (near Jamnia) and Beth-dagon in Judah, (Joshua 15:41)
and Asher. (Joshua 19:27) Dagon was represented with the face and hands of
a man and the tail of a fish. (1 Samuel 5:5) The fish-like form was a
natural emblem of fruitfulness, and as such was likely to be adopted by
seafaring tribes in the representation of their gods.


DALAIAH


(freed by Jehovah) a descendant of the royal family of Judah. (1
Chronicles 3:24)


DALMANUTHA


a town on the west side of the Sea of Galilee, near Magdala. (Matthew
15:39) and Mark 8:10 [MAGDALA] Dalmnnutha probably stood at the place
called ’Ain-el-Barideh, "the cold fountain."


DALMATIA


a mountainous district on the eastern coast of the Adriatic Sea. St. Paul
sent Titus there. (2 Timothy 4:10)


DALPHON


(swift), the second of the ten sons of Hamam (Esther 9:7) (B.C.
610.)


DAMARIS


(a heifer), an Athenian woman converted to Christianity by St.
Paul's preaching. (Acts 17:34) (A.D 48.) Chrysostom and others held her to
have been the wife of Dionysius the Areopagite.


DAMASCUS


one of the most ancient and most important of the cities of Syria. It is
situated 130 miles northeast of Jerusalem, in a plain of vast size and of
extreme fertility, which lies east of the great chain of Anti-Libanus, on
the edge of the desert. This fertile plain, which is nearly circular and
about 30 miles in diameter, is due to the river Barada, which is
probably the "Abana" of Scripture. Two other streams the Wady Helbon upon
the north and the Awaj, which flows direct from Hermon upon the south,
increase the fertility of the Damascene plain, and contend for the honor
of representing the "Pharpar" of Scripture. According to Josephus,
Damascus was founded by Uz grandson of Shem. It is first mentioned in
Scripture in connection with Abraham, (Genesis 14:15) whose steward was a
native of the place. (Genesis 15:2) At one time david became complete
master of the whole territory, which he garrisoned with israelites. (2
Samuel 8:5,6) It was in league with Baasha, king of Israel against Asa, (1
Kings 15:19; 2 Chronicles 16:3) and afterwards in league with Asa against
Baasha. (1 Kings 15:20) Under Ahaz it was taken by Tiglath-pileser, (2
Kings 16:7,8,9) the kingdom of Damascus brought to an end, and the city
itself destroyed, the inhabitants being carried captive into Assyria. (2
Kings 16:9) comp. Isai 7:8 and Amos 1:5 Afterwards it passed successively
under the dominion of the Assyrians, Babylonians, Persians, Macedonians,
Romans and Saracens, and was at last captured by the Turks in 1516 A.D.
Here the apostle Paul was converted and preached the gospel. (Acts 9:1-25)
Damascus has always been a great centre for trade. Its present population
is from 100,000 to 150,000. It has a delightful climate. Certain
localities are shown as the site of those scriptural events which
specially interest us in its history. Queen's Street, which runs straight
through the city from east to west, may be the street called Straight.
(Acts 9:11) The house of Judas and that of Ananias are shown, but little
confidence can be placed in any of these traditions.


DAN


(a judge).

  • The fifth son of Jacob, and the first of Bilhah, Rachel's maid.
    (Genesis 30:6) (B.C. after 1753.) The origin of the name is given in the
    exclamation of Rachel. The records of Dan are unusually meagre. Only one
    son is attributed to him, (Genesis 46:23) but his tribe was, with the
    exception of Judah, the most numerous of all. In the division of the
    promised land Dan was the last of the tribes to receive his portion, which
    was the smallest of the twelve. (Joshua 19:48) But notwithstanding its
    smallness it had eminent natural advantages. On the north and east it was
    completely embraced by its two brother tribes Ephraim and Benjamin, while
    on the southeast and south it joined Judah, and was thus surrounded by the
    three most powerful states of the whole confederacy. It was a rich and
    fertile district; but the Amorites soon "forced them into the mountain,"
    (Judges 1:34) and they had another portion granted them. Judges 18. In the
    "security" and "quiet," (Judges 18:7,10) of their rich northern possession
    the Danites enjoyed the leisure and repose which had been denied them in
    their original seat. In the time of David Dan still kept its place among
    the tribes. (1 Chronicles 12:35) Asher is omitted, but the "prince of the
    tribe of Dan" is mentioned in the list of (1 Chronicles 27:22) But from
    this time forward the name as applied to the tribe vanishes; it is kept
    alive only by the northern city. In the genealogies of 1Chr 2-12, Dan is
    omitted entirely. Lastly, Dan is omitted from the list of those who were
    sealed by the angel in the vision of St. John. (Revelation 7:5-7)

  • The well-known city, so familiar as the most northern landmark of
    Palestine, in the common expression "from Dan even to beersheba." The name
    of the place was originally LAISH or LESHEM. (Joshua 19:47) After the
    establishment of the Danites at Dan it became the acknowledged extremity
    of the country. It is now Tell el-Kadi, a mound, three miles from
    Banias, from the foot of which gushes out one of the largest fountains in
    the world, the main source of the Jordan.


DANITES, THE


The descendants of Dan and the members of his tribe. (Judges 13:2;
18:1,11; 1 Chronicles 12:35)


DANJAAN


(Danian, i.e. belonging to Dan). (2 Samuel 24:6) Probably
the same as DAN.


DANCE


The dance is spoken of in Holy Scripture universally as symbolical of some
rejoicing, and is often coupled for the sake of contrast with mourning, as
in (Ecclesiastes 3:4) comp. Psal 30:11; Matt 11:17 In the earlier period
it is found combined with some song or refrain, (Exodus 15:20; 32:18,19; 1
Samuel 21:11) and with the tambourine (Authorized Version "timbrel"), more
especially in those impulsive outbursts of popular feeling which cannot
find sufficient vent in voice or in gesture singly. Dancing formed a part
of the religious ceremonies of the Egyptians, and was also common in
private entertainments. For the most part dancing was carried on by the
women, the two sexes seldom and not customarily intermingling. The one who
happened to be near of kin to the champion of the hour led the dance. In
the earlier period of the Judges the dances of the virgins of Shiloh.
(Judges 21:19-23) were certainly part of a religious festivity. Dancing
also had its place among merely festive amusements, apart from any
religious character. (Jeremiah 31:4,13; Mark 6:22)


DANCE


a musical instrument of percussion, supposed to have been used by the
Hebrews at an early period of their history.


DANIEL


(judgment of God).

  • The second son of David, by Abigail the Carmelitess. (1 Chronicles
    3:1) In (2 Samuel 3:3) he is called Chileab. (B.C. about 1051.)

  • The fourth of ’the greater prophets." Nothing is known of his
    parentage or family. He appears, however, to have been of royal or noble
    descent, (Daniel 1:3) and to have possessed considerable personal
    endowments. (Daniel 1:4) He was taken to Babylon in "the third year of
    Jehoiakim" (B.C. 604), and trained for the king's service. He was divinely
    supported in his resolve to abstain from the "king's meat" for fear of
    defilement. (Daniel 1:8-16) At the close of his three years discipline,
    (Daniel 1:5,18) Daniel had an opportunity of exercising his peculiar gift,
    (Daniel 1:17) of interpreting dreams, on the occasion of Nebuchadnezzar's
    decree against the Magi. (Daniel 2:14) ff. In consequence of his success
    he was made "ruler of the whole province of Babylon." (Daniel 2:48) He
    afterwards interpreted the second dream of Nebuchadnezzar, (Daniel 4:8-27)
    and the handwriting on the wall which disturbed the feast of Belshazzar.
    (Daniel 5:10-28) At the accession of Darius he was made first of the
    "three presidents" of the empire, (Daniel 6:2) and was delivered from the
    lion's den, into which he had been cast for his faithfulness to the rites
    of his faith. (Daniel 6:10-23) cf. Bel and Dr. 29-42. At the accession of
    Cyrus he still retained his prosperity, (Daniel 6:28) cf. Dani 1:21 Though
    he does not appear to have remained at Babylon, cf. (Daniel 1:21) and in
    "the third year of Cyrus" (B.C. 534) he saw his last recorded vision, on
    the banks of the Tigris. (Daniel 10:1,4) In the prophecies of Ezekiel
    mention is made of Daniel as a pattern of righteousness, (Ezekiel
    14:14,20) and wisdom. (Ezekiel 28:3) The narrative in (Daniel 1:11)
    implies that Daniel was conspicuously distinguished for purity and
    knowledge at a very early age.

  • A descendant of Ithamar, who returned with Ezra. (Ezra 8:2)

  • A priest who sealed the covenant drawn up by Nehemiah, B.C. 445.
    (Nehemiah 10:6) He is perhaps the same as No. 3.


DANIEL, THE BOOK OF


stands at the head of a series of writings in which the deepest thoughts
of the Jewish people found expression after their close of the prophetic
era. Daniel is composed partly in the vernacular Aramaic (Chaldee) and
partly in the sacred Hebrew. The introduction, Dan. 1-2:4 a, is written in
Hebrew. On the occasion of the "Syriac" (i.e. Aramaic) answer of the
Chaldeans, the language changes to Aramaic, and this is retained till the
close of the seventh chapter (2:4 b-7). The personal introduction of
Daniel as the writer of the text, 8:1, is marked by the resumption of the
Hebrew, which continues to the close of the book. ch. 8-12. The book may
be divided into three parts. The first chapter forms an introduction. The
next six chapters, 2-7, give a general view of the progressive history of
the powers of the world, and of the principles of the divine government as
seen in the events of the life of Daniel. The remainder of the book, chs.
8-12, traces in minuter detail the fortunes of the people of God, as
typical of the fortunes of the Church in all ages. In the first seven
chapters Daniel is spoken of historically ; int he last five he
appears personally as the writer. The cause of the difference of
person is commonly supposed to lie int he nature of the case. It is,
however, more probable that the peculiarity arose from the manner in which
the book assumed its final shape. The book exercised a great influence
upon the Christian Church. The New Testament incidentally acknowledges
each of the characteristic elements of the book, its miracles, (Hebrews
11:33,34) its predictions, (Matthew 24:15) and its doctrine of angels.
(Luke 1:19,26) The authenticity of the book has been attacked in modern
times. (But the evidence, both external and internal, is conclusive as to
its genuineness. Rawlinson, in his "Historical Evidences," shows how some
historical difficulties that had been brought against the book are solved
by the inscription on a cylinder lately found among the ruins of Ur in
Chaldea. -- ED.)


DANIEL, APOCRYPHAL ADDITIONS TO


The Greek translations of Daniel contain several pieces which are not
found int he original text. The most important are contained in the
Apocrypha of the English Bible under the titles of The Son of the Three
Holy Children, The History of Susannah,
and The History of...Bel
and the Dragon.
The first of these is supposed to be the triumphal
song of the three confessors in the furnace, (Daniel 3:23) praising God
for their deliverance, of which a chief part (35-66) has been used as a
hymn in the Christian Church since the fourth century. The second, called
also The Judgment of Daniel, relates the story of the clearing of
Susannah from a charge of adultery; and the third gives an exaggerated
account of Daniel's deliverance.


DANNAH


a city in the mountains of Judah, (Joshua 15:49) and probably south or
southwest of Hebron. No trace of its name has been discovered.


DARA


(1 Chronicles 2:6) [DARDA]


DARIC


(from dara, a king), Authorized Version "dram," (1
Chronicles 29:7; Ezra 2:69; 8:27; Nehemiah 7:70,71,72) a gold coin current
in Palestine in the period after the return from Babylon. It weighed 128
grains, and was worth about five dollars. At these times there was no
large issue of gold money except by the Persian kings. The darics which
have been discovered are thick pieces of pure hold, of archaic style,
bearing on the obverse the figure of a king with bow and javelin or bow
and dagger, and on the reverse an irregular incuse square. The silver
daric was worth about fifty cents.


DARIUS


(lord), the name of several kings of Media and Persia.

  • DARIUS THE MEDE, (Daniel 6:1; 11:1) "the son of Ahasuerus," (Daniel
    9:1) who succeeded to the Babylonian kingdom ont he death of Belshazzar,
    being then sixty-two years old. (Daniel 5:31; 9:1) (B.C. 538.) Only one
    year of his reign is mentioned, (Daniel 9:1; 11:1) but that was of great
    importance for the Jews. Daniel was advanced by the king to the highest
    dignity, (Daniel 6:1) ff., and in his reign was cast into the lions’
    den. Dan. 6. This Darius is probably the same as "Astyages," the last king
    of the Medes.

  • DARIUS, the son of Hystaspes the founder of the Perso-Arian dynasty.
    Upon the usurpation of the magian Smerdis, he conspired with six other
    Persian chiefs to overthrow the impostor and on the success of the plot
    was placed upon the throne, B.C. 521. With regard to the Jews, Darius
    Hystaspes pursued the same policy as Cyrus, and restored to them the
    privileges which they had lost. (Ezra 5:1) etc.; Ezra 6:1 etc.

  • DARIUS THE PERSIAN, (Nehemiah 12:22) may be identified with Darius II.
    Nothus (Ochus), king of Persia B.C. 424-3 to 405-4; but it is not
    improbable that it points to Darius III. Codomannus, the antagonist of
    Alexander and the last king of Persia, B.C. 336-330.


DARKNESS


is spoken of as encompassing the actual presence of God, as that out of
which he speaks, -- the envelope, as it were, of divine glory. (Exodus
20:21; 1 Kings 8:12) The plague of darkness in Egypt was miraculous. The
darkness "over all the land," (Matthew 27:45) attending the crucifixion
has been attributed to an eclipse, but was undoubtedly miraculous, as no
eclipse of the sun could have taken place at that time, the moon being at
the full at the time of the passover. Darkness is also, as in the
expression "land of darkness," used for the state of the dead, (Job
10:21,22) and frequently, figuratively, for ignorance and unbelief, as the
privation of spiritual light. (John 1:5; 3:19)


DARKON


(scatterer). Children of Darkon were among the "servants of
Solomon" who returned from Babylon with Zerubbabel. (Ezra 2:56; Nehemiah
7:58) (B.C. before 536).


DATES


(2 Chronicles 31:5) marg. [PALM TREE TREE]


DATHAN


(belonging to a fountain) a Reubenite chieftain, son of Eliab, who
joined the conspiracy of Korah the Levite. (Numbers 16:1; 26:9; 11:6;
Psalms 106:17) (B.C. 1490-1452).


DAUGHTER


The word is used in Scripture not only for daughter, but for granddaughter
or other female descendant. (Genesis 24:48) It is used of the female
inhabitants of a place or country, (Genesis 6:2; Luke 23:28) and of cities
in general, (Isaiah 10:32; 23:12) but more specifically of dependent towns
or hamlets, while to the principal city the correlative "mother" is
applied. (Numbers 21:25) "Daughters of music," i.e. singing birds,
(Ecclesiastes 12:4) refers to the power of making and enjoying music.


DAVID


(well-beloved), the son of Jesse. His life may be divided into
three portions:

  • His youth before his introduction to the court of Saul;

  • His relations with Saul;

  • His reign.

  • The early life of David contains in many important respects the
    antecedents of his future career. It appears that David was the youngest
    son, probably the youngest child, of a family of ten, and was born in
    Bethlehem B.C. 1085. The first time that David appears in history at once
    admits us to the whole family circle. The annual sacrificial feast is
    being held when Samuel appears, sent by God to anoint one of Jesse's sons
    as they pass before him, (1 Samuel 16:6-10) Samuel sends for the youngest,
    David, who was "keeping the sheep," and anoints him. (1 Samuel 16:11-13)
    As David stood before Samuel we are enabled to fix his appearance at once
    in our minds. He was of short stature, with red or auburn hair, such as is
    not unfrequently seen in his countrymen of the East at the present day. In
    later life he wore a beard. His bright eyes are specially mentioned, (1
    Samuel 16:12) and generally he was remarkable for the grace of his figure
    and countenance ("fair of eyes," "comely," "goodly,") (1 Samuel 16:12,18;
    17:42) well made and of immense strength and agility. His swiftness and
    activity made him like a wild gazelle, his feet like hart's feet, and his
    arms strong enough to break a bow of steel. (Psalms 18:33,34) After the
    anointing David resumes his accustomed duties, and the next we know of him
    he is summoned to the court to chase away the king's madness by music, (1
    Samuel 16:14-19) and in the successful effort of David's harp we have the
    first glimpse into that genius for music and poetry which was afterwards
    consecrated in the Psalms. After this he returned to the old shepherd life
    again. One incident alone of his solitary shepherd life has come down to
    us -- his conflict with the lion and the bear in defence of his father's
    flocks. (1 Samuel 17:34,35) It was some years after this that David
    suddenly appears before his brothers in the camp of the army, and hears
    the defiant challenge of the Philistine giant Goliath. With his shepherd's
    sling and five small pebbles he goes forth and defeats the giant. (1
    Samuel 17:40-51)

  • Relations with Saul. -- We now enter on a new aspect of David's
    life. The victory over Goliath had been a turning point of his career.
    Saul inquired his parentage, and took him finally to his court. Jonathan
    was inspired by the romantic friendship which bound the two youths
    together to the end of their lives. Unfortunately David's fame proved the
    foundation of that unhappy jealousy of Saul towards him which, mingling
    with the king's constitutional malady, poisoned his whole future relations
    to David. His position in Saul's court seems to have been first
    armor-bearer, (1 Samuel 16:21; 18:2) then captain over a thousand, (1
    Samuel 18:13) and finally, on his marriage with Michal, the king's second
    daughter, he was raised to the high office of captain of the king's
    body-guard, second only, if not equal, to Abner, the captain of the host,
    and Jonathan, the heir apparent. David was not chiefly known for his
    successful exploits against the Philistines, by one of which he won his
    wife, and rove back the Philistine power with a blow from which it only
    rallied at the disastrous close of Saul's reign. He also still performed
    from time to time the office of minstrel; but the successive attempts of
    Saul upon his life convinced him that he was in constant danger. He had
    two faithful allies, however, in the court -- the son of Saul, his friend
    Jonathan, and the daughter of Saul, his wife Michal. Warned by the one and
    assisted by the other, he escaped by night, and was from thenceforward a
    fugitive. He at first found a home at the court of Achish, among the
    Philistines; but his stay was short. Discovered possibly by "the sword of
    Goliath," his presence revived the national enmity of the Philistines
    against their former conqueror, and he only escaped by feigning madness.
    (1 Samuel 21:13) His first retreat was the cave of Adullam. In this
    vicinity he was joined by his whole family, (1 Samuel 22:1) and by a
    motley crowd of debtors and discontented men, (1 Samuel 22:2) which formed
    the nucleus of his army. David's life for the next few years was made up
    of a succession of startling incidents. He secures an important ally in
    Abiathar, (1 Samuel 23:6) his band of 400 at Adullam soon increased to
    600, (1 Samuel 23:13) he is hunted by Saul from place to place like a
    partridge. (1 Samuel 23:14,22,25-29; 24:1-22; 26) He marries Abigail and
    Ahinoam. (1 Samuel 25:42,43) Finally comes the new of the battle of Gilboa
    and the death of Saul and Jonathan. 1Sam 31. The reception of the tidings
    of the death of his rival and of his friend, the solemn mourning, the vent
    of his indignation against the bearer of the message, the pathetic
    lamentation that followed, will close the second period of David's life.
    (2 Samuel 1:1-27)

  • David's reign. --

  • As king of Judah at Hebron, 7 1/2 years. (2 Samuel 2:1; 2 Samuel 5:5)
    Here David was first formally anointed king. (2 Samuel 2:4) To Judah his
    dominion was nominally confined. Gradually his power increased, and during
    the two years which followed the elevation of Ish-bosheth a series of
    skirmishes took place between the two kingdoms. Then rapidly followed the
    successive murders of Abner and of Ish-bosheth. (2 Samuel 3:30; 4:5) The
    throne, so long waiting for him, was now vacant, and the united voice of
    the whole people at once called him to occupy it. For the third time David
    was anointed king, and a festival of three days celebrated the joyful
    event. (1 Chronicles 12:39) One of David's first acts after becoming king
    was to secure Jerusalem, which he seized from the Jebusites and fixed the
    royal residence there. Fortifications were added by the king and by Joab,
    and it was known by the special name of the "city of David." (2 Samuel
    5:9; 1 Chronicles 11:7) The ark was now removed from its obscurity at
    Kirjath-jearim with marked solemnity, and conveyed to Jerusalem. The
    erection of the new capital at Jerusalem introduces us to a new era in
    David's life and in the history of the monarchy. He became a king on the
    scale of the great Oriental sovereigns of Egypt and Persia, with a regular
    administration and organization of court and camp; and he also founded an
    imperial dominion which for the first time realize the prophetic
    description of the bounds of the chosen people. (Genesis 15:18-21) During
    the succeeding ten years the nations bordering on his kingdom caused David
    more or less trouble, but during this time he reduced to a state of
    permanent subjection the Philistines on the west, (2 Samuel 8:1) the
    Moabites on the east, (2 Samuel 8:2) by the exploits of Benaiah, (2 Samuel
    23:20) the Syrians on the northeast as far as the Euphrates, (2 Samuel
    8:3) the Edomites, (2 Samuel 8:14) on the south; and finally the
    Ammonites, who had broken their ancient alliance, and made one grand
    resistance to the advance of his empire. (2 Samuel 10:1-19; 12:26-31)
    Three great calamities may be selected as marking the beginning, middle
    and close of David's otherwise prosperous reign, which appear to be
    intimated in the question of Gad, (2 Samuel 24:13) "a three-years famine,
    a three-months flight or a three-days pestilence." a. Of these the first
    (the three-years famine) introduces us to the last notices of David's
    relations with the house of Saul, already referred to. b. The second group
    of incidents contains the tragedy of David's life, which grew in all its
    parts out of the polygamy, with its evil consequences, into which he had
    plunged on becoming king. Underneath the splendor of his last glorious
    campaign against the Ammonites was a dark story, known probably at that
    time only to a very few -- the double crime of adultery with Bath-sheba
    and the virtual murder of Uriah. The clouds from this time gathered over
    David's fortunes, and henceforward "the sword never departed from his
    house." (2 Samuel 12:10) The outrage on his daughter Tamar, the murder of
    his eldest son Amnon, and then the revolt of his best-beloved Absalom,
    brought on the crisis which once more sent him forth as wanderer, as in
    the days when he fled from Saul. (2 Samuel 15:18) The final battle of
    Absalom's rebellion was fought in the "forest of Ephraim," and terminated
    in the accident which led to the young man's death; and, though nearly
    heartbroken at the loss of his son, David again reigned in undisturbed
    peace at Jerusalem. (2 Samuel 20:1-22) c. The closing period of David's
    life, with the exception of one great calamity, may be considered as a
    gradual preparation for the reign of his successor. This calamity was the
    three-days pestilence which visited Jerusalem at the warning of the
    prophet Gad. The occasion which led to this warning was the census of the
    people taken by Joab at the king's orders, (2 Samuel 24:1-9; 1 Chronicles
    21:1-7; 27:23,24) which was for some reason sinful in God's sight. 2Sam
    24. A formidable conspiracy to interrupt the succession broke out in the
    last days of David's reign; but the plot was stifled, and Solomon's
    inauguration took place under his father's auspices. (1 Kings 1:1-53) By
    this time David's infirmities had grown upon him. His last song is
    preserved -- a striking union of the ideal of a just ruler which he had
    placed before him and of the difficulties which he had felt in realizing
    it. (2 Samuel 23:1-7) His last words to his successor are general
    exhortations to his duty. (1 Kings 2:1-9) He died, according to Josephus,
    at the age of 70, and "was buried in the city of David." After the return
    from the captivity, "the sepulchres of David" were still pointed out
    "between Siloah and the house of the mighty men," or "the guard-house."
    (Nehemiah 3:16) His tomb, which became the general sepulchre of the kings
    of Judah, was pointed out in the latest times of the Jewish people. The
    edifice shown as such from the Crusades to the present day is on the
    southern hill of modern Jerusalem commonly called Mount Zion, under the
    so-called "Coenaculum;" but it cannot be identified with the tomb of
    David, which was emphatically within the walls.


DAVID, CITY OF


[JERUSALEM]


DAY


The variable length of the natural day at different seasons led in the
very earliest times to the adoption of the civil day (or one revolution of
the sun) as a standard of time. The Hebrews reckoned the day from evening
to evening, (Leviticus 23:32) deriving it from (Genesis 1:5) "the
evening and the morning were the first day." The Jews are
supposed, like the modern Arabs, to have adopted from an early period
minute specifications of the parts of the natural day. Roughly, indeed,
they were content to divide it into "morning, evening and noonday,"
(Psalms 55:17) but when they wished for greater accuracy they pointed to
six unequal parts, each of which was again subdivided. These are held to
have been --

  • "the dawn."

  • "Sunrise."

  • "Heat of the day," about 9 o’clock.

  • "The two noons," (Genesis 43:16; 28:29)

  • "The cool (lit. wind) of the day," before sunset, (Genesis 3:8)
    -- so called by the Persians to this day.

  • "Evening." Before the captivity the Jews divided the night into three
    watches, (Psalms 63:6; 90:4) viz. the first watch, lasting till midnight,
    (Lamentations 2:19) the "middle watch," lasting till cockcrow, (Judges
    7:19) and the "morning watch," lasting till sunrise. (Exodus 14:24) In the
    New Testament we have allusions to four watches, a division borrowed from
    the Greeks and Romans. These were --

  • From twilight till 9 o/clock, (Mark 11:11; John 20:19)

  • Midnight, from 9 till 12 o’clock, (Mark 13:35) 3 Macc 5:23.

  • Till daybreak. (John 18:28) The word held to mean "hour" is first
    found in (Daniel 3:6,15; 5:5) Perhaps the Jews, like the Greeks, learned
    from the Babylonians the division of the day into twelve parts. In our
    Lord's time the division was common. (John 11:9)


DAYSMAN


an old English term meaning umpire or arbitrator. (Job
9:33)


DEACON


The office described by this title appears in the New Testament as the
correlative of bishop. [BISHOP] The two are mentioned together in
(Philemon 1:1; 1 Timothy 3:2,8) Its original meaning implied a helper, an
assistant. The bishops were the "elders," the deacons the young active
men, of the church. The narrative of Acts 6 is commonly referred to as
giving an account of the institution of this office. The apostles, in
order to meet the complaints of the Hellenistic Jews that their widows
were neglected in the daily ministration, call on the body of believers to
choose seven men "full of the Holy Ghost and of wisdom," whom they "may
appoint over this business." It may be questioned, however, whether the
seven were not appointed to higher functions than those of the deacons of
the New Testament. Qualifications and duties. Special directions as
to the qualifications for and the duties of deacons will be found in Acts
6 and (1 Timothy 3:8-12) From the analogy of the synagogue, and from the
scanty notices in the New Testament, we may think of the deacons or "young
men" at Jerusalem as preparing the rooms for meetings, distributing alms,
maintaining order at the meetings, baptizing new converts, distributing
the elements at the Lord's Supper.


DEACONESS


The word diakonos is found in (Romans 16:1) (Authorized Version
"servant") associated with a female name, and this has led to the
conclusion that there existed in the apostolic age, as there undoubtedly
did a little later, an order of women bearing that title, and exercising
in relation to their own sex functions which were analogous to those of
the deacons. On this hypothesis it has been inferred that the women
mentioned in (Romans 16:6,12) belonged to such an order. The rules given
as to the conduct of women in (1 Timothy 3:11; Titus 2:3) have in like
manner been referred to them, and they have been identified even with the
"widows" of (1 Timothy 5:3-10)


DEAD SEA


This name nowhere occurs in the Bible, and appears not to have existed
until the second century after Christ. [See SEA, THE SALT, THE SALT]


DEARTH


[FAMINE]


DEBIR


(a sanctuary), the name of three places of Palestine.

  • A town in the mountains of Judah, (Joshua 15:49) one of a group of
    eleven cities to the west of Hebron. The earlier name of Debir was
    Kirjath-sepher, "city of book," (Joshua 15:15; Judges 1:11) and
    Kirjath-sannah, "city of palm." (Joshua 15:49) It was one of the cities
    given with their "suburbs" to the priests. (Joshua 21:15; 1 Chronicles
    6:58) Debir has not been discovered with certainty in modern times; but
    about three miles to the west of Hebron is a deep and secluded valley
    called the Wady Nunkur, enclosed on the north by hills, of which
    one bears a name certainly suggestive of Debir -- Dewir-ban.

  • A place on the north boundary of Judah, near the "valley of Achor."
    (Joshua 15:7) A Wady Dabor is marked in Van Deuteronomy Velde's map
    as close to the south of Neby Musa, at the northwest corner of the
    Dead Sea.

  • The "border of Debir" is named as forming part of the boundary of Gad,
    (Joshua 13:26) and as apparently not far from Mahanaim.


DEBIR


king of Eglon; one of the five kings hanged by Joshua. (Joshua 10:3,23)
(B.C. 1440.)


DEBORAH


(a bee). (B.C. 1857.)

  • The nurse of Rebekah. (Genesis 35:8) Deborah accompanied Rebekah from
    the house of Bethuel, (Genesis 24:59) and is only mentioned by name on the
    occasion of her burial under the oak tree of Bethel, which was called in
    her honor Allon-bachuth.

  • A prophetess who judged Israel. Judges 4,5. (B.C, 1316.) She lived
    under the palm tree of Deborah between Ramah and Bethel in Mount Ephraim,
    (Judges 4:5) which, as palm trees were rare in Palestine, "is mentioned as
    a well-known and solitary landmark." She was probably a woman of Ephraim.
    Lapidoth was probably her husband, and not Barak as some say. She was not
    so much a judge as one gifted with prophetic command (Judges 4:6,14; 5:7)
    and by virtue of her inspiration "a mother in Israel." The tyranny of
    Jabin, a Canaanitish king, was peculiarly felt in the northern tribes, who
    were near his capital and under her jurisdiction. Under her direction
    Barak encamped on the broad summit of Tabor. Deborah's prophecy was
    fulfilled, (Judges 4:9) and the enemy's general perished among the "oaks
    of the wanderers" (Zaanaim), in the tent of the Bedouin Kenite's wife,
    (Judges 4:21) in the northern mountains. Deborah's title of "prophetess"
    includes the notion of inspired poetry, as in (Exodus 15:20) and in this
    sense the glorious triumphal ode, Judges 5, well vindicates her claim to
    the office.


DEBTOR


[LOAN]


DEDAN


(low country).

  • The name of a son of Raamah, son of Cush. (Genesis 10:7; 1 Chronicles
    1:9)

  • A son of Jokshan, son of Keturah. (Genesis 25:3; 1 Chronicles 1:32)
    (B.C. after 1988.)


DEDANIM


descendants of Dedan I. (Isaiah 21:13) [DEDAN]


DEDICATION, FEAST OF THE


the festival instituted to commemorate the purging of the temple and the
rebuilding of the altar after Judas Maccabbeus had driven out the Syrians,
B.C. 164. 1 Macc. 4:52-59. It is named only once in the canonical
Scriptures. (John 10:22) It commenced on the 25th of Chisleu (early in
December), the anniversary of the pollution of the temple by Antiochus
Epiphanes, B.C. 167. Like the great Mosaic feasts, it lasted eight days,
but it did not require attendance at Jerusalem. It was an occasion of much
festivity, and was celebrated in nearly the same manner as the feast of
tabernacles, with the carrying of branches of trees and with much singing.
In the temple at Jerusalem the "Hallel" was sung every day of the
feast.


DEER


[FALLOW-DEER]


DEGREES, SONGS OF


a title given to fifteen Psalms, from 120 to 134 inclusive. Four of them
are attributed to David, one is ascribed to the pen of Solomon, and the
other ten give no indication of their author. With respect to the term
rendered in the Authorized Version "degrees" a great diversity of views
prevails, but the most probable opinion is that they were pilgrim songs,
sung by the people as they went up to Jerusalem.


DEHAVITES


mentioned only once in Scripture, (Ezra 4:9) among the colonists planted
in Samaria after the completion of the captivity of Israel. They are
probably the Dai or Dahi, mentioned by Herodotus (i. 125) among the
nomadic tribes of Persia.


DEKAR


(a lancer). The son of Dekar, i.e. Ben Dekar, was Solomon's
commissariat officer in the western part of the hill-country of Judah and
Benjamin, Shaalbim and Bethshemesh. (1 Kings 4:9) (B.C. before 1014.)


DELAIAH


(freed by Jehovah).

  • A priest in the time of David, leader of the twenty-third course of
    priests. (1 Chronicles 24:18) (B.C. 1014.)

  • "Children of Delaiah" were among the people of uncertain pedigree who
    returned from Babylon with Zerubbabel. (Ezra 2:60; Nehemiah 7:62) (B.C.
    536.)

  • Son of Mehetabeel and father of Shemaiah. (Nehemiah 6:10) (B.C. before
    410.)

  • Son of Shemaiah, one of the "princes" about the court of Jehoiakim.
    (Jeremiah 36:12,25) (B.C. 604.)


DELILAH, OR DELILAH


(languishing) a woman who dwelt in the valley Of Sorek, beloved by
Samson. (Judges 16:4-18) There seems to be little doubt that she was a
Philistine courtesan. [SAMS0N] (B.C. 1141.)


DELUGE


[NOAH]


DEMAS


(governor of the people), most probably a contraction from
Demetrius or perhaps from Demarchus, a companion of St. Paul, (Philemon
1:24; Colossians 4:14) during his first imprisonment at Rome. (A.D. 57.)
At a later period, (2 Timothy 4:10) we find him mentioned as having
deserted the apostle through love of this present world, and gone to
Thessalonica.


DEMETRIUS


(belonging to Ceres).

  • A maker of silver shrines of Artemis at Ephesus. (Acts 19:24) (about
    A.D. 52). These were small models of the great temple of the Ephesian
    Artemis, with her statue, which it was customary to carry on journeys, and
    place on houses as charms.

  • A disciple, (3 John 1:12) mentioned with commendation (about A.D. 90).
    Possibly the first Demetrius,converted; but this is very doubtful.


DEMON


In the Gospels generally, in (James 2:19) and in Reve 16:14 The demons are
spoken of as spiritual beings, at enmity with God, and having power to
afflict man not only with disease, but, as is marked by the frequent
epithet "un-clean," with spiritual pollution also. They "believe" the
power of God "and tremble," (James 2:19) they recognized the Lord as the
Son of God, (Matthew 8:29; Luke 4:41) and acknowledged the power of his
name, used in exorcism. In the place of the name of Jehovah, by his
appointed messengers, (Acts 19:15) and looked forward in terror to the
judgment to come. (Matthew 8:29) The description is precisely that of a
nature akin to the angelic in knowledge and powers, but with the emphatic
addition of the idea of positive and active wickedness.


DEMONIACS


This word is frequently used in the New Testament, and applied to persons
suffering under the possession of a demon or evil spirit, such possession
generally showing itself visibly in bodily disease or mental derangement.
It has been maintained by many persons that our Lord and the evangelists,
in referring to demonical possession, spoke only in accommodation to the
general belief of the Jews, without any assertion as to its truth or its
falsity. It is concluded that, since the symptoms of the affliction were
frequently those of bodily disease (as dumbness, (Matthew 9:32) blindness,
(Matthew 12:22) epilepsy, (Mark 9:17-27)), or those seen in cases of
ordinary insanity (as ill) (Matthew 8:28; Mark 5:1-5) the demoniacs were
merely persons suffering under unusual diseases of body and mind. But
demoniacs are frequently distinguished from those afflicted with bodily
sickness, see (Mark 1:32; 16:17,18; Luke 6:17,18) the same outward signs
are sometimes referred to possession sometimes merely to disease, comp.
(Matthew 4:24) with Matt 17:15; (Matthew 12:22) with Mark 7:32 etc.; the
demons are represented as speaking in their own persons with superhuman
knowledge. (Matthew 8:29; Mark 1:24; 5:7; Luke 4:41) etc. All these things
speak of a personal power of evil. Twice our Lord distinctly connects
demoniacal possession with the power of the evil one. (Luke 10:18) Lastly,
the single fact recorded of the entrance of the demons at (Gadara (Mark
5:10-14) into the herd of swine, and the effect which that entrance caused
is sufficient to overthrow the notion that our Lord and the evangelists do
not assert or imply any objective reality of possession. We are led,
therefore, to the ordinary and literal interpretation of these passages,
that there are evil spirits, subjects of the evil one, who, in the days of
the Lord himself and his apostles especially, were permitted by (God to
exercise a direct influence over the souls and bodies of certain men.


DENARIUS


(containing ten), Authorized Version "penny," (Matthew 18:28;
20:2,9,13) a Roman silver coin in the time of our Saviour and the
Apostles, worth about 15 cents. It took its name from its being first
equal to ten "asses," a number afterwards increased to sixteen. It was the
principal silver coin of the Roman commonwealth. From the parable of the
laborers in the vineyard it would seem that a denarius was then the
ordinary pay for a day's labor. (Matthew 20:2,4,7,9,10,13)


DEPUTY


(Acts 13:7,8,12; 19:38) The Greek word signifies proconsul, the title of
the Roman governors who were appointed by the senate.


DERBE


(Acts 14:20,21; 16:1; 20:4) The exact position of this town has not yet
been ascertained, but its general situation is undoubted. It was in the
eastern part of the great upland plain of Lycaonia, which stretched from
Iconium eastward along the north side of the chain of Taurus. (Rev. L. H.
Adams, a missionary, identifies it with the modern Divle, a town
of about 4500 inhabitants, on the ancient road between Tarsus and Lystra.
-- ED.)


DESERT


Not a stretch of sand, an utterly barren waste, but a wild, uninhabited
region. The words rendered in the Authorized Version by "desert," when
used in the historical books denote definite localities.

  • ARABAH. This word means that very depressed and enclosed region -- the
    deepest and the hottest chasm in the world -- the sunken valley north and
    south of the Dead Sea, but more particularly the former. [ARABAH] Arabah
    in the sense of the Jordan valley is translated by the word "desert" only
    in (Ezekiel 47:8)

  • MIDBAR. This word, which our translators have most frequently rendered
    by "desert," is accurately "the pasture ground." It is most frequently
    used for those tracts of waste land which lie beyond the cultivated ground
    in the immediate neighborhood of the towns and villages of Palestine, and
    which are a very familiar feature to the traveller in that country.
    (Exodus 3:1; 6:3; 19:2)

  • CHARBAH appears to have the force of dryness, and thence of
    desolation. It is rendered "desert" in Psal 102:6; Isai 48:21; Ezek 13:4
    The term commonly employed for it in the Authorized Version is "waste
    places" or "desolation."

  • JESHIMON, with the definite article, apparently denotes the waste
    tracts on both sides of the Dead Sea. In all these cases it is treated as
    a proper name in the Authorized Version. Without the article it occurs in
    a few passages of poetry in the following of which it is rendered;
    "desert:" (Psalms 78:40; 106:14; Isaiah 43:19,20)


DEUEL, OR DEUEL


(invocation of God), father of Eliasaph, the "captain" of the tribe
of Gad at the time of the numbering of the people at Sinai. (Numbers 1:14;
7:42,47; 10:20) (B.C. 1491.) The same man is mentioned again in (Numbers
2:14) but here the name appears as Ruel.


DEUTERONOMY


-- which means "the repetition of the law" -- consists chiefly of three
discourses delivered by Moses shortly before his death. Subjoined to these
discourses are the Song of Moses the Blessing of Moses, and the story of
his death.

  • The first discourse. (1:1; 4:40) After a brief historical introduction
    the speaker recapitulates the chief events of the last forty years in the
    wilderness. To this discourse is appended a brief notice of the severing
    of the three cities of refuge on the east side of the Jordan.
    (4:41-43)

  • The second discourse is introduced like the first by an explanation of
    the circumstances under which it was delivered. (4:44-49) It extends from
    chap. (5:1-26) 19 And contains a recapitulation, with some modifications
    and additions of the law already given on Mount Sinai.

  • In the third discourse, (27:1-30) 20 The elders of Israel are
    associated with Moses. The people are commanded to set up stones upon
    Mount Ebal, and on them to write "all the words of this law." Then follow
    the several curses to be pronounced by the Levites on Ebal, (27:14-26) and
    the blessings on Gerizim. (28:1-14)

  • The delivery of the law as written by Moses (for its still further
    preservation) to the custody of the Levites, and a charge to the people to
    hear it read once every seven years, Deut. 31; the Song of Moses spoken in
    the ears of the people, (31:30; 32:44) and the blessing of the twelve
    tribes. (33:5) The book closes, Deuteronomy 34, with an account of the
    death of Moses, which is first announced to him ch. (32:48-52) The book
    bears witness to its own authorship, (31:19) and is expressly cited in the
    New Testament as the work of Moses. (Matthew 19:7,8; Mark 10:3; Acts 3:22;
    7:37) The last chapter, containing an account of the death of Moses, was
    of course added by a later hand, and probably formed originally the
    beginning of the book of Joshua. [PENTATEUCH, THE]


DEVIL


(slanderer). The name describes Satan as slandering God to man and
man to God. The former work is of course, a part of his great work of
temptation to evil and is not only exemplified but illustrated as to its
general nature and tendency by the narrative of Gen. 3. The other work,
the slandering or accusing men before God, is the imputation of selfish
motives, (Job 1:9,10) and its refutation is placed in the self-sacrifice
of those "who loved not their own lives unto death." [SATAN; DEMON]


DEW


This in the summer is so copious in Palestine that it supplies to some
extent the absence of rain and becomes important to the agriculturist.
Thus it is coupled in the divine blessing with rain, or mentioned as a
prime source of fertility, (Genesis 27:28; 33:13; Zechariah 8:12) and its
withdrawal is attributed to a curse. (2 Samuel 1:21; 1 Kings 17:1; Haggai
1:10) It becomes a leading object in prophetic imagery by reason of its
penetrating moisture without the apparent effort of rain, (32:2; Job
29:19; Psalms 133:3; Hosea 14:5) while its speedy evanescence typifies the
transient goodness of the hypocrite. (Hosea 6:4; 13:3)


DIADEM


What the "diadem" of the Jews was we know not. That of other nations of
antiquity was a fillet of silk, two inches broad, bound round the head and
tied behind. Its invention is attributed to Liber. Its color was generally
white, sometimes, however, it was of blue, like that of Darius; and it was
sown with pearls or other gems, (Zechariah 9:16) and enriched with gold.
(Revelation 9:7) It was peculiarly the mark of Oriental sovereigns. In
(Esther 1:11; 2:17) we have cether for the turban worn by the
Persian king, queen or other eminent persons to whom it was conceded as a
special favor. The diadem of the king differed from that of others in
having an erect triangular peak. The words in (Ezekiel 23:15) mean long
and flowing turbans of gorgeous colors. [CROWN]


DIAL


"An instrument for showing the time of day from the shadow of a style or
gnomon on a graduated arc or surface; "rendered" steps" in Authorized
Version, (Exodus 20:26; 2 Kings 10:19) and "degrees," (2 Kings 20:9,10,11;
Isaiah 38:8) where to give a consistent rendering we should read with the
margin the "degrees" rather than the "dial" of Ahaz. It is probable that
the dial of Ahaz was really a series of steps or stairs, and that the
shadow (Perhaps of some column or obelisk on the top) fell on a greater or
smaller number of them according as the sun was low or high. The terrace
of a palace might easily be thus ornamented.


DIAMOND


(Heb. yahalom), a gem crystallized carbon, the most valued and
brilliant of precious stones, remarkable for its hardness, the third
precious stone in the second row on the breastplate of the high priest,
(Exodus 28:18; 39:11) and mentioned by Ezekiel, (Ezekiel 28:13) among the
precious stones of the king of Tyre. Some suppose yahalom to be the
"emerald." Respecting shamir, which is translated "Diamond" in
(Jeremiah 17:1) see under ADAMANT.


DIANA


This Latin word, properly denoting a Roman divinity, is the representative
of the Greek Artemus, the tutelary goddess of the Ephesians, who
plays so important a part in the narrative of Acts 19. The Ephesian Diana
was, however, regarded as invested with very different attributes, and is
rather to be identified with Astarte and other female divinities of the
East. The head wore a mural crown, each hand held a bar of metal, and the
lower part ended in a rude block covered with figures of animals and
mystic inscriptions. This idol was regarded as an object of peculiar
sanctity, and was believed to have fallen down from heaven. (Acts
19:35)


DIBLAIM


(double cake), mother of Hosea's wife Gomer. (Hosea 1:3) (B.C.
before 725.)


DIBLATH


(accurately DIBLAH), a place named only in (Ezekiel 6:14) Probably only
another form of RIBLAH.


DIBON


(wasting).

  • A town on the east side of Jordan, in the rich pastoral country, which
    was taken possession of and rebuilt by the children of Gad. (Numbers
    32:3,34) From this circumstance it possibly received the name of
    DIBON-GAD. (Numbers 33:45,46) Its first mention is in (Numbers 21:30) and
    from this it appears to have belonged originally to the Moabites. We find
    Dibon counted to Reuben in the lists of Joshua. (Joshua 13:9,17) In the
    time of Isaiah and Jeremiah, however, it was again in possession of Moab.
    (Isaiah 15:2; Jeremiah 48:18,22) comp. Jere 48:24 In modern times the name
    Dhiban has been discovered as attached to extensive ruins on the
    Roman road, about three miles north of the Arnon (Wady
    Modjeb
    ).

  • One of the towns which were reinhabited by the men of Judah after the
    return from captivity, (Nehemiah 11:25) identical with DIMONAH.


DIBONGAN


[DIBON]


DIBRI


a Danite, father of Shelomith. (Leviticus 24:11)


DIDRACHMON


[MONEY; SHEKEL]


DIDYMUS


(the twin), a surname of the apostle Thomas. (John 11:16; 20:24;
21:2) [THOMAS]


DIKLAH


(palm grove). (Genesis 10:27; 1 Chronicles 1:21) a son of Joktan,
whose settlements, in common with those of the other sons of Joktan, must
be looked for in Arabia. It is thought that Diklah is a part of Arabia
containing many palm trees.


DILEAN


(gourd), one of the cities in the lowlands of Judah. (Joshua 15:38)
It has not been identified with certainty.


DIMNAH


(dung), a city int he tribe of Zebulun, given to the Merarite
Levites. (Joshua 21:35)


DIMON


(river bed), The waters of, some streams on the east of the
Dead Sea, in the land of Moab, against which Isaiah uttered denunciation.
(Isaiah 15:9) Gesenius conjectures that the two names Dimon and Dibon are
the same.


DIMONAH


a city in the south of Judah, (Joshua 15:22) perhaps the same as DIBON in
(Nehemiah 11:25)


DINAH


(judged, acquitted), the daughter of Jacob by Leah. (Genesis 30:21)
(B.C. about 1751.) She accompanied her father from Mesopotamia to Canaan,
and, having ventured among the inhabitants, was violated by Shechem the
son of Hamor, the chieftain of the territory in which her father had
settled. Gen. 34. Shechem proposed to make the usual reparation by paying
a sum to the father and marrying her. (Genesis 34:12) This proposal was
accepted, the sons of Jacob demanding, as a condition of the proposed
union, the circumcision of the Shechemites. They therefore assented; and
on the third day, when the pain and fever resulting from the operation
were at the highest, Simeon and Levi, own brothers of Dinah, attacked them
unexpectedly, slew all the males, and plundered their city.


DINAITES


(Ezra 4:9) the name of some of the Cuthaean colonists who were placed in
the cities of Samaria after the captivity of the ten tribes.


DINHABAH


(Genesis 36:32; 1 Chronicles 1:43) the capital city, and probably the
birthplace, of Bela, son of Beor king of Edom.


DIONYSIUS


(devoted to Dionysus, i.e., Bacchus) the
Areop’agite,
(Acts 17:34) an eminent Athenian, converted to
Christianity by the preaching of St. Paul. (A.D. 52.) He is said to have
been first bishop of Athens. The writings which were once attributed to
him are now confessed to be the production of some neo-Platonists of the
sixth century.


DIOTREPHES


(nourished by Jove), a Christian mentioned in (3 John 1:9) but of
whom nothing is known.


DISCIPLE


[APOSTLES]


DISEASES


[MEDICINE]


DISHAN


(antelope), the youngest son of Seir the Horite. (Genesis
36:21,28,30; 1 Chronicles 1:38,42)


DISHON


(antelope)

  • The fifth son of Seir. (Genesis 36:21,26,30; 1 Chronicles 1:38)


DISPERSION, THE JEWS OF THE


or simply THE DISPERSION, was the general title applied to those Jews who
remained settled in foreign countries after the return from the Babylonian
exile, and during the period of the second temple. At the beginning of the
Christian era the Dispersion was divided into three great sections, the
Babylonian, the Syrian, the Egyptian. From Babylon the Jews spread
throughout Persia, Media and Parthia. Large settlements of Jews were
established in Cyprus, in the islands of the AEgean, and on the western
coast of Asia Minor. Jewish settlements were also established at
Alexandria by Alexander and Ptolemy I. The Jewish settlements in Rome,
were consequent upon the occupation of Jerusalem by Pompey, B.C. 63. The
influence of the Dispersion on the rapid promulgation of Christianity can
scarcely be overrated. The course of the apostolic preaching followed in a
regular progress the line of Jewish settlements. The mixed assembly from
which the first converts were gathered on the day of Pentecost represented
each division of the Dispersion. (Acts 2:9-11) (1)
Parthians...Mesopotamia; (2) Judea (i.e. Syria)...Pamphylia; (3)
Egypt...Greece; (4) Romans..., and these converts naturally prepared the
way for the apostles int he interval which preceded the beginning of the
separate apostolic missions. St. James and St. Peter wrote to the Jews of
the Dispersion. (James 1:1; 1 Peter 1:1)


DIVINATION


is a "foretelling future events, or discovering things secret by the aid
of superior beings, or other than human means." It is used in Scripture of
false systems of ascertaining the divine will. It has been
universal in all ages, and all nations alike civilized and savage.
Numerous forms of divination are mentioned, such as divination by rods,
(Hosea 4:12) divination by arrows, (Ezekiel 21:21) divination by cups,
(Genesis 44:5) consultation of teraphim, (1 Samuel 15:23; Ezekiel 21:21;
Zechariah 10:2) [TERAPHIM]; divination by the liver, (Ezekiel 21:21)
divination by dreams, (13:2,3; Judges 7:13; Jeremiah 23:32) consultation
of oracles. (Isaiah 41:21-24; 44:7) Moses forbade every species of
divination, because a prying into the future clouds the mind with
superstition, and because it would have been an incentive to idolatry. But
God supplied his people with substitutes for divination which would have
rended it superfluous, and left them in no doubt as to his will in
circumstances of danger, had they continued faithful. It was only when
they were unfaithful that the revelation was withdrawn. (1 Samuel 28:6; 2
Samuel 2:1; 5:23) etc. Superstition not unfrequently goes hand in hand
with skepticism, and hence, amid the general infidelity prevalent
throughout the Roman empire at our Lord's coming, imposture was rampant.
Hence the lucrative trade of such men as Simon Magus, (Acts 8:9)
Bar-jesus, (Acts 13:6) the slave with the spirit of Python, (Acts 16:16)
the vagabond jews, exorcists, (Luke 11:19; Acts 19:13) and others, (2
Timothy 3:13; Revelation 19:20) etc., as well as the notorious dealers in
magical books at Ephesus. (Acts 19:19)


DIVORCE


"a legal dissolution of the marriage relation." The law regulating this
subject is found (24:1-4) and the cases in which the right of a husband to
divorce his wife was lost are stated ibid., (22:19,29) The ground
of divorce is appoint on which the Jewish doctors of the period of the New
Testament differed widely; the school of Shammai seeming to limit it to a
moral delinquency in the woman, whilst that the Hillel extended it to
trifling causes, e.g., if the wife burnt the food she was cooking for her
husband. The Pharisees wished perhaps to embroil our Saviour with these
rival schools by their question, (Matthew 19:3) by his answer to which, as
well as by his previous maxim, (Matthew 5:31) he declares that he regarded
all the lesser causes than "fornication" as standing on too weak ground,
and declined the question of how to interpret the words of Moses.


DIZAHAB


(region of gold), a place in the Arabian desert, mentioned (1:1) is
identified with Dahab, a cape on the western shore of the Gulf of
Akabah.


DODAI


(loving, amorous), an Ahohite who commanded the course of the
second month. (1 Chronicles 27:4) It is probable that he is the same as
DODO. 2.


DODANIM


(leaders), (Genesis 10:4; 1 Chronicles 1:7) a family or race
descended from Javan, the son of Japhet. (Genesis 10:4; 1 Chronicles 1:7)
Dodanim is regarded as identical with the Dardani, who were found in
historical times in Illyricum and Troy.


DODAVAH


(love of the Lord), a man of Maresha in Judah; father of Eliezer,
who denounced Jehoshaphat's alliance with Ahaziah. (2 Chronicles
20:37)


DODO


(loving).

  • A man of Bethlehem, father of Elhanan, who was one of David's thirty
    captains. (2 Samuel 23:24; 1 Chronicles 11:26) He is a different person
    from

  • DODO THE AHOHITE, father of Eleazar, the second of the three mighty
    men who were over the thirty. (2 Samuel 23:9; 1 Chronicles 11:12) (B.C.
    before 1046).


DOEG


(fearful), an Idumean, chief of Saul's herdmen. (B.C. 1062.) He was
at Nob when Ahimelech gave David the sword of Goliath, and not only gave
information to Saul, but when others declined the office, himself executed
the king's order to destroy the priests of Nob, with their families, to
the number of 85 persons, together with all their property. (1 Samuel
21:7; 22:9,18,22; Psalms 52)


DOG


an animal frequently mentioned in Scripture. It was used by the hebrews as
a watch for their houses, (Isaiah 56:10) and for guarding their flocks.
(Job 30:1) Then also, as now troops of hungry and semi-wild dogs used to
wander about the fields and the streets of the cities, devouring dead
bodies and other offal, (1 Kings 14:11; 21:19,23; 22:38; Psalms 59:6) and
thus became so savage and fierce and such objects of dislike that fierce
and cruel enemies are poetically styled dogs in (Psalms 22:16,20) moreover
the dog being an unclean animal, (Isaiah 66:3) the epithets dog, dead dog,
dog's head, were used as terms of reproach or of humility in speaking of
one's self. (1 Samuel 24:14; 2 Samuel 3:8; 9:8; 16:9; 2 Kings 8:13)


DOORS


[GATE]


DOPHKAH


(cattle-driving), a place mentioned (Numbers 33:12) as a station in
the desert where the Israelites encamped. [WILDERNESS OF THE WANDERING OF
THE WANDERING IN THE WILDERNESS]


DOR


(dwelling), (Joshua 17:11; 1 Kings 4:11) an ancient royal city of
the Canaanites, (Joshua 12:23) whose ruler was an ally of Jabin king of
Hazor against Joshua. (Joshua 11:1,2) It appears to have been within the
territory of the tribe of Asher, though allotted to Manasseh, (Joshua
17:11; Judges 1:27) Solomon stationed at Dor one of his twelve purveyors.
(1 Kings 4:11) jerome places it on the coast, "in the ninth mile from
Caesarea, on the way to Ptolemais." Just at the point indicated is the
small village of Tantura, probably an Arab corruption of
Dora, consisting of about thirty houses, wholly constructed of
ancient materials.


DORCAS


(gazelle). [TABITHA]


DOSITHEUS


a "priest and Levite" who carried the translation of Esther to Egypt.
(Esther 11:1,2)


DOTHAIM


[DOTHAN]


DOTHAN


(two wells), a place first mentioned (Genesis 37:17) in connection
with the history of Joseph, and apparently as in the neighborhood of
Shechem. It next appears as the residence of Elisha. (2 Kings 6:13) It was
known to Eusebius, who places it 12 miles to the north of Sebaste
(Samaria); and here it has been discovered in our own times, still bearing
its ancient name unimpaired.


DOVE


The first menton of this bird occurs in Gen. 8. The dove's rapidity of
flight is alluded to in (Psalms 55:6) the beauty of its plumage in (Psalms
68:13) its dwelling int he rocks and valleys in (Jeremiah 48:28) and Ezek
7:16 Its mournful voice in (Isaiah 38:14; 59:11; Nahum 2:7) its
harmlessness in (Matthew 10:16) its simplicity in (Hosea 7:11) and its
amativeness in (Solomon 1:15; 2:14) Doves are kept in a domesticated state
in many parts of the East. In Persia pigeon-houses are erected at a
distance from the dwellings, for the purpose of collecting the dung as
manure. There is probably an allusion to such a custom in (Isaiah
60:8)


DOVES DUNG


Various explanations have been given of the passage in (2 Kings 6:25)
Bochart has labored to show that it denotes a species of cicer,
"chick-pea," which he says the Arabs call usnan, and sometimes
improperly "dove's" or "sparrow's dung." Great quantities of these are
sold in Cairo to the pilgrims going to Mecca. Later authorities incline to
think it the bulbous root of the Star of Bethlehem (ornithogalum,
i.e. bird-milk), a common root in Palestine, and sometimes eaten. -- ED.
It can scarcely be believed that even in the worst horrors of a siege a
substance so vile as is implied by the literal rendering should have been
used for food.


DOWRY


[MARRIAGE]


DRACHM


(Luke 15:8,9) 2 Macc 4:19; 10:20; 12:43, a Greek silver coin, varying in
weight on account of the use of different talents. In Luke denarii
(Authorized Version "piece of silver") seem to be intended. [MONEY;
SILVER]


DRAGON


The translators of the Authorized Version, apparently following the
Vulgate, have rendered by the same word "dragon" the two Hebrew words
tan and tannin, which appear to be quite distinct in
meaning.

  • The former is used, always in the plural, in (Job 30:29; Psalms 44:19;
    Isaiah 34:13; 43:20; Jeremiah 9:11) It is always applied to some creatures
    inhabiting the desert, and we should conclude from this that it refers
    rather to some wild beast than to a serpent. The syriac renders it by a
    word which, according to Pococke, means a "jackal."

  • The word tannin seems to refer to any great monster, whether of
    the land or the sea, being indeed more usually applied to some kind of
    serpent or reptile, but not exclusively restricted to that sense. (Exodus
    7:9,10,12; 32:33; Psalms 91:13) In the New Testament it is found only in
    the Apocalypse, (Revelation 12:3,4,7,9,16,17) etc., as applied
    metaphorically to "the old serpent, called the devil, and Satan."


DRAM


[DARIC]


DREAMS


The Scripture declares that the influence of the Spirit of God upon the
soul extends to its sleeping as well as its waking thoughts. But, in
accordance with the principle enunciated by St. Paul in (1 Corinthians
14:15) dreams, in which the understanding is asleep, are placed below the
visions of prophecy, in which the understanding plays its part. Under the
Christian dispensation, while we read frequently of trances and vision,
dreams are never referred to as vehicles of divine revelation. In exact
accordance with this principle are the actual records of the dreams sent
by God. The greater number of such dreams were granted, for prediction or
for warning, to those who were aliens to the Jewish covenant. And where
dreams are recorded as means of God's revelation to his chosen servants,
they are almost always referred to the periods of their earliest and most
imperfect knowledge of him. Among the Jews, "if any person dreamed a dream
which was peculiarly striking and significant, he was permitted to go to
the high priest in a peculiar way, and see if it had any special import.
But the observance of ordinary dreams and the consulting of those who
pretend to skill in their interpretation are repeatedly forbidden.
(13:1-5; 18:9-14) -- Schaff.


DRESS


This subject includes the following particulars:

  • Materials;

  • Color and decoration;

  • Name, form, and mode of wearing the various articles;

  • Special usages relating thereto.

  • Materials. -- After the first "apron" of fig leaves, (Genesis
    3:7) the skins of animals were used for clothing. (Genesis 3:21) Such was
    the "mantle" worn by Elijah. Pelisses of sheepskin still form an ordinary
    article of dress in the East. The art of weaving hear was known to the
    Hebrews at an early period, (Exodus 25:4; 26:7) and wool was known earlier
    still. (Genesis 38:12) Their acquaintance with linen and perhaps cotton
    dates from the captivity in Egypt, (1 Chronicles 4:21) silk was introduced
    much later. (Revelation 18:12) The use of mixed material, such as wool and
    flax, was forbidden. (Leviticus 19:19; 22:11)

  • Color and decoration. -- The prevailing color of the Hebrew
    dress was the natural white of the materials employed, which might be
    brought to a high state of brilliancy by the art of the fuller. (Mark 9:3)
    The notice of scarlet thread, (Genesis 38:28) implies some acquaintance
    with dyeing. The elements of ornamentation were -- (1) weaving with
    threads previously dyed, (Exodus 35:25) (2) the introduction of gold
    thread or wire, (Exodus 27:6) ff; (3) the addition of figures. Robes
    decorated with gold, (Psalms 45:13) and with silver thread, cf. (Acts
    12:21) were worn by royal personages; other kinds of embroidered robes
    were worn by the wealthy, (Judges 5:30; Psalms 45:14; Ezekiel 16:13) as
    well as purple, (Proverbs 31:22; Luke 16:19) and scarlet. (2 Samuel
    1:24)

  • The names, forms, and modes of wearing the robes. -- The
    general characteristics of Oriental dress have preserved a remarkable
    uniformity in all ages: the modern Arab dresses much as the ancient Hebrew
    did. The costume of the men and women was very similar; there was
    sufficient difference, however, to mark the sex, and it was strictly
    forbidden to a woman to wear the appendages, such as the staff,
    signet-ring, and other ornaments, of a man; as well as to a man to wear
    the outer robe of a woman. (22:5) We shall first describe the robes which
    were common to the two sexes, and then those which were peculiar to women.
    (1) The inner garment was the most essential article of dress. It
    was a closely-fitting garment, resembling in form and use our shirt,
    though unfortunately translate "coat" in the Authorized Version. The
    material of which it was made was either wool, cotton or linen. It was
    without sleeves, and reached only to the knee. Another kind reached to the
    wrists and ankles. It was in either case kept close to the body by a
    girdle, and the fold formed by the overlapping of the robe served as an
    inner pocket. A person wearing the inner garment alone was described as
    naked. (2) There was an upper or second tunic, the
    difference being that it was longer than the first. (3) the linen
    cloth
    appears to have been a wrapper of fine linen, which might be
    used in various ways, but especially as a night-shirt. (Mark 14:51) (4)
    The outer garment consisted of a quadrangular piece of woollen
    cloth, probably resembling in shape a Scotch plaid. The size and texture
    would vary with the means of the wearer. It might be worn in various ways,
    either wrapped round the body or thrown over the shoulders like a shawl,
    with the ends or "skirts" hanging down in front; or it might be thrown
    over the head, so as to conceal the face. (2 Samuel 15:30; Esther 6:12)
    The ends were skirted with a fringe and bound with a dark purple ribbon,
    (Numbers 15:38) it was confined at the waist by a girdle. The outer
    garment was the poor man's bed clothing. (Exodus 22:26,27) The dress of
    the women differed from that of the men in regard to the outer garment,
    the inner garment being worn equally by both sexes. (Solomon 5:3) Among
    their distinctive robes we find a kind of shawl, (Ruth 3:15; Isaiah 3:22)
    light summer dresses of handsome appearance and ample dimensions,a nd gay
    holiday dresses. (Isaiah 3:24) The garments of females were terminated by
    an ample border of fringe (skirts, Authorized Version), which
    concealed the feet. (Isaiah 47:2; Jeremiah 13:22) The travelling
    cloak referred to by St. Paul, (2 Timothy 4:13) is generally
    identified with the Roman paenula. It is, however, otherwise
    explained as a travelling-case for carrying clothes or books. The coat
    of many colors
    worn by Joseph, (Genesis 37:3,23) is variously taken to
    be either a "coat of divers colors" or a tunic furnished with sleeves and
    reaching down to the ankles. The latter is probably the correct
    sense.

  • Special usages relating to dress. -- The length of the dress
    rendered it inconvenient for active exercise; hence the outer garments
    were either left in the house by a person working close by, (Matthew
    24:18) or were thrown off when the occasion arose, (Mark 10:50) or, if
    this were not possible, as in the case of a person travelling, they were
    girded up. (1 Kings 18:46; 1 Peter 1:13) On entering a house the upper
    garment was probably laid aside, and resumed on going out. (Acts 12:8) In
    a sitting posture, the garments concealed the feet; this was held to be an
    act of reverence. (Isaiah 6:2) The number of suits possessed by the
    Hebrews was considerable: a single suit consisted of an under and upper
    garment. The presentation of a robe in many instances amounted to
    installation or investiture, (Genesis 41:42; Esther 8:15; Isaiah 22:21) on
    the other hand, taking it away amounted to dismissal from office. 2 Macc.
    4:38. The production of the best robe was a mark of special honor in a
    household. (Luke 15:22) The number of robes thus received or kept in store
    for presents was very large, and formed one of the main elements of wealth
    in the East, (Job 22:6; Matthew 6:19; James 5:2) so that to have
    clothing
    implied the possession of wealth and power. (Isaiah 3:6,7) On
    grand occasions the entertainer offered becoming robes to his guests. The
    business of making clothes devolved upon women in a family. (Proverbs
    31:22; Acts 9:39) little art was required in what we may term the
    tailoring department; the garments came forth for the most part ready made
    from the loom, so that the weaver supplanted the tailor.


DRINK, STRONG


The Hebrew term shecar, in its etymological sense, applies to any
beverage that had intoxicating qualities. With regard to the
application of the term in later times we have the explicit statement of
Jerome, as well as other sources of information, from which we may state
the that following beverages were known to the Jews: --

  • Beer, which was largely consumed in Egypt under the name of
    zythus, and was thence introduced into Palestine. It was made of
    barley; certain herbs, such as lupine and skirret, were used as
    substitutes for hops.

  • Cider, which is noticed in the Mishna as apple
    wine.

  • Honey wine, of which there were two sorts, one consisting of a
    mixture of wine, honey and pepper; the other a decoction of the juice of
    the grape, termed debash (honey) by the Hebrews, and dibs by
    the modern Syrians.

  • Date wine, which was also manufactured in Egypt. It was made
    by mashing the fruit in water in certain proportions.

  • Various other fruits and vegetables are enumerated by Pliny as
    supplying materials for factitious or home-made wine, such as figs,
    millet, the carob fruit, etc. It is not improbable that the Hebrews
    applied raisins to this purpose in the simple manner followed by
    the Arabians, viz., by putting them in jars of water and burying them in
    the ground until fermentation took place.


DROMEDARY


[Camel]


DRUSILLA


(watered by the dew), daughter of herod Agrippa *., (Acts 24:24)
ff., and Cypros. Born A.D. 38. She was at first betrothed to Antiochus
Epiphanes, prince of Commagene, but was married to Azizus, king of Emesa.
Soon after, Felix, procurator of Judea, brought about her seduction by
means of the Cyprian sorcerer Simon, and took her as his wife. In (Acts
24:24) we find her in company with Felix at Caesarea. Felix who, together
with his mother, perished in the eruption of Vesuvius under Titus.


DULCIMER


(Heb. sumphoniah) a musical instrument, mentioned in (Daniel
3:5,15) probably the bagpipe. The same instrument is still in use amongst
peasants in the northwest of Asia and in southern Europe, where it is
known by the similar name sampogna or zampogna.


DUMAH


(silence).

  • A son of Ishmael, most probably the founder of the Ishmaelite tribe of
    Arabia, and thence the name of the principal place of district inhabited
    by that tribe. (Genesis 25:14; 1 Chronicles 1:30; Isaiah 21:11)

  • A city in the mountainous district of Judah, near Hebron, (Joshua
    15:52) represented by the ruins of a village called ed-Daumeh, six
    miles southwest of Hebron.


DUNG


The uses of dung were two-fold -- as manure and as fuel. The manure
consisted either of straw steeped in liquid manure, (Isaiah 25:10) or the
sweepings, (Isaiah 5:25) of the streets and roads, which were carefully
removed from about the houses, and collected in heaps outside the walls of
the towns at fixed spots -- hence the dung-gate at Jerusalem -- and thence
removed in due course to the fields. The difficulty of procuring fuel in
Syria, Arabia and Egypt has made dung in all ages valuable as a
substitute. It was probably used for heating ovens and for baking cakes,
(Ezra 4:12,15) the equable heat which it produced adapting it pecularily
for the latter operation. Cow's and camels dung is still used for a
similar purpose by the Bedouins.


DUNGEON


[PRISON]


DURA


(a circle), the plain where Nebuchadnezzar set up the golden image,
(Daniel 3:1) has been sometimes identified with a tract a little below
Tekrit, on the left bank of the Tigris, where the name Dur
is still found. M. Oppert places the plain (or, as he calls it, the
"valley") of Dura to the southeast of Babylon, in the vicinity of the
mound of Dowair or Duair, where was found the pedestal of a
huge statue.


DUST


[MOURNING]


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