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[GR] > Gematria and Scripture

I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the ending, saith the Lord, which is, and which was, and which is to come, the Almighty.

Revelation 1.8

As is common knowledge amongst most scholars of the biblical languages, both Hebrew and Greek are intrinsically alphanumeric, which means that the signs used to denote letters also serve to represent numbers.

The correspondence between letter and number for the Greek alphabet is found on inscriptions as far back as the fifth century BC, and the values given in the Alphabet Table are found in many standard Greek dictionaries.

Likewise, the Hebrew alphanumeric correspondence has been discovered on coins dating from the second century BC, and to this day the chapters and verses in Hebrew Bibles are indexed primarily using letters rather than Arabic numerals. As with the Greek, these values may be found in most standard Hebrew dictionaries. Simply stated, the alphanumeric structure of the alphabets is incontrovertible; it is as well established as the alphabets themselves.

Historically, some of the most profound thinkers in the Jewish and Christian communities have used this alphanumeric correlation to derive relations that appear to be nothing less than a glorious divine revelation. Yet we must understand that this.phpect of God’s Word is "strong meat" that "belongeth to them that are of full age, even those who by reason of use have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil."

It must never be forgotten that there are portions of the Bible "in which are some things hard to be understood, which they that are unlearned and unstable wrest, as they do also the other scriptures, unto their own destruction." Many who have lacked a proper foundation in the plain teachings of Scripture have erred greatly in their abuse of God’s numerical system to “prove” their own fallible, home-spun doctrines. Others erred simply because they lacked an understanding and appreciation of mathematical beauty and truth. Such is what fills most, though certainly not all, of the published treatises on this subject. That being said, "let us go on unto perfection" to behold the incomparable wisdom of God.

Law and Number

The Exodus from Egypt, which immediately preceded the reception of God’s Law, the Torah, provides an apt example of the inherent precision of God’s works. We read:

Now the sojourning of the children of Israel, who dwelt in Egypt, was four hundred and thirty years. And it came to pass at the end of the four hundred and thirty years, even the selfsame day it came to pass, that all the hosts of the LORD went out from the land of Egypt.

Note the degree of exactitude expressed in this verse. God specified that the Exodus began after the passage of four-hundred and thirty years to the very day. Moses then led the Israelites to Mount Sinai where God made a covenant with them and gave them the Torah, his Law.

Many centuries later, the Apostle Paul used these facts when he explained “that the covenant, ... the law, which was four hundred and thirty years after” did not destroy the original promise of righteousness through faith given to Abraham. The word written in this verse, translated as Law, is pic (nomos), the nominative form of the standard word used throughout the New Testament. In accordance with the Table,  we derive the following identity:

Law

pic

Nomos

= 50 + 70 + 40 + 70 + 200 = 430

This presents the natural mind with quite a quandary. To deny, in the face of this identity, that God’s hidden hand guided the development of History, Scripture, and the Greek alphabet leaves one with a paltry set of possibilities. At best, the scornful mouth may mutter something about "mere coincidence" which would, perhaps, be an acceptable non-explanation if this identity did not involve one of the most important words in all the Bible, and if God had not so carefully established this relation through History and Scripture. Yet this is but the beginning. It is generally understood that this study of alphanumeric relations, called Gematria in Hebrew and Isopsephia in Greek, is precisely what the Apostle John had in mind when he wrote:

Here is wisdom. Let him that hath understanding count the number of the beast: for it is the number of a man; and his number is Six hundred threescore and six.

As an aside, the Greek phrase translated as "the number of a man" has no definite article in the Greek, so that it could accurately be translated as "the number of man". This coheres with the significance of the Number Six as revealed by the creation of Man on the Sixth Day and the prohibition against his unjust destruction in the Sixth Commandment. The Number Six, encompassing both the concepts of the creation and destruction of Man, is therefore the Number of Man.

Returning to the main point, the word that John used in this verse, translated as Number, is pic (arithmos), the nominative form of the standard Greek word used throughout the New Testament. This is the root of the English 'arithmetic'. Thus we have a second identity:

Number

pic

Arithmos

= 1 + 100 + 10 + 9 + 40 + 70 + 200 = 430

Law and Number have an equal weight when reckoned according to the intrinsic alphanumeric structure of the Greek alphabet. They are both members of the numerical category defined by the Number 430:

The Number 430 Law - pic
Number - pic

Just as the Cosmos was designed in accordance with exquisitely exact numerical laws, so also the Word by which it was created. The miracle of God is that sets such as this arise from the explicit message of Scripture coupled with the intrinsic alphanumeric structure of the biblical languages. And like the Bible itself, these languages form a completely self-consistent, indeed, self-descriptive semantic system. The wisdom of God teaches itself to the student through its own self-reflective symmetry and supernatural self-consistency. It is as if God took the semantic coal of human language and compressed it to form the purest diamond. And what a multi-faceted jewel it is! What a polychromatic fountain of light it displays!

The self-descriptive property of the Hebrew alphabet manifests most elegantly in its own name, (Aleph-Beyt). This word, formed from the names of its first two letters, gives rise to the following numerical value:

Alephbet

pic

= 400 + 10 + 2 + 80 + 30 + 1 = 523

This large prime number coincides exactly with the value of the phrase defining the beginning and end of the Aleph-Beyt1:

Aleph and Tav

pic

Aleph V'Tav

= 6 + 400 + 6 + 80 + 30 + 1 = 523

The Aleph-Beyt has the same weight, or magnitude, as the Aleph and Tav. Numerically, they are the same size, reflecting the simple fact that they encompass the same thing, the Hebrew alphabet. They are both elements of the numerical category defined by the Number 523:

The Number 523 Aleph-Bet ( )
Aleph and Tav (

Further insight emerges when the composite word Aleph-Beyt is taken as an acrostic, yielding the first word of the Hebrew language, pic (Av, Father). Jesus used the Aramaic form of this word when he said, "Abba, Father, all things are possible unto thee." More generally, Av signifies the idea of the founder, author, source or origin of something. No more fitting word could be set as the fountainhead of the alphabet. Like the Bible itself, the alphabet begins in the beginning, and it bears the title of its Author, God the Father. Being composed of an Aleph and a Bet, it encodes the ultimate purpose of the Alphabet, which was designed to guide us to our Aleph Bet – Av – our heavenly Father. This is the wisdom given by our blessed Abba Who teaches us our divine ABCs. It is the alphabet created by the everlasting God, the Alpha and Omega, the Aleph and Tav, to reveal Himself to us. Glory to God in the highest!

Alpha and Omega

Yet there is more. The only explicit references to any letters of the Greek alphabet in the surface text of Scripture are from the verses in which God declares I am Alpha and Omega. This gives rise to what is without question one of the greatest identities to emerge from the intrinsic alphanumeric structure of the Greek language. The value is:

Alpha + Omega

pic

= 801

This value coincides with that of pic (Ho Ktisas, The Creator) which Paul used in Romans 1. This word and its Hebrew equivalent Bara are discussed in the Spoke 1 article (cf. Creation) where their frequency is shown to be integrated with the geometry of the Wheel. Here is the context where the term appears:

Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools, And changed the glory of the uncorruptible God into an image made like to corruptible man, and to birds, and fourfooted beasts, and creeping things. Wherefore God also gave them up to uncleanness through the lusts of their own hearts, to dishonour their own bodies between themselves: Who changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen.

The actual phrase written is ton ktisanta, the accusative form of the absolute . Most literally, it means "He who is creating." The exact nominative phrase is found in the following ancient Greek texts, translated as indicated:

  • Matthew 19.4: He who created (NU text)
  • 3 Maccabees 2.3: the Creator
  • Sirach 24.8: the Creator

The great miracle of God is that we have this mathematically exact identity:

The Creator

pic

Ho Ktisas

= 801

If God were to write His name in the stars of heaven and cause each bird to sing Gloria Dei in one great chorus, would we have a greater witness to the truth of the God of the Bible than what we find in this simple pair of identities? 

Yet there is more. When Jesus was baptized, God chose the form of a Dove to identify Himself as the Holy Spirit. Since at or before the time of the early church father Irenaeus (2nd century), it has been known that this relates to Alpha and Omega via the simple identity:

Dove

pic

Peristera

= 801

Thus we have the three-fold set of alphanumeric identities that identify the Almighty Everlasting God:

The Number 801 Alpha Omega ( )
The Creator(
Dove ( )

Just as the identity Law = 430 unites the explicit biblical message with the intrinsic numerical values of the Greek alphabet, so now we witness the eternal nature of God our Creator encoded in the first and last of these holy letters. If there remained any doubt that the Lord God Almighty designed the Greek alphabet for "the praise of the glory of his grace," this one identity should forever dispel such folly. These identities are immutable, incontrovertible, and absolutely uncontrived. They are derived from nothing but the eternal Word of God analyzed in terms of the universally accepted values of the Greek and Hebrew alphabets.

This means that the numerical identity relating the Creator to the first and last letters of the Greek alphabet – in absolutely perfect agreement with God’s own Word and the essence of the Eternal Deity – is, was, and always will be enshrined in the intrinsic alphanumeric structure of the God-given Greek language!

The Everlasting God

The results above cast an utterly new light upon the origin of language. Nearly all modern scholars - in direct contradiction of biblical witness - have thought and taught it to be a mere human invention. It now must be understood as one of the greatest of all God’s works. Of course, this has alsways been common knowledge to biblically literate Christians - In the beginning was the Word .... Such an understanding is entirely consistent with the Christian faith, which is fundamentally mystical, as any genuine encounter with God must be. But this mystery will not always remain hidden, for by grace our eyes may be opened, as declared by the Apostle Paul when he said the "revelation of the mystery, which was kept secret since the world began” has now been made manifest "according to the commandment of the everlasting God." Though this verse was primarily speaking of the mystery of "Christ in you," I am convinced that it also implies this mystery seen in the numerical value of the nominative form of the phrase he used:

The Everlasting God

pic

Ho Aionios Theos

= 1495

This value coincides exactly with the sum of the letters from Aleph to Tav, thereby integrating this Greek title of God with the alphanumeric structure of the Hebrew alphabet, and demonstrating that both alphabets were harmoniously designed to bear the fullness of God’s self-revelation, which is the ultimate purpose of all Scripture. Thus we have another set:

The Number 1495 The Everlasting God - pic
Sum of the letters from Aleph to Tav

This set is extremely significant as an example of the integration of the alphanumeric structures of the Greek and Hebrew alphabets. Just as the apparent distinction between the Hebrew and Greek Testaments fades when they are integrated upon the Wheel, so also the apparent distinction between the Hebrew and Greek languages fades when they are integrated via their intrinsic alphanumeric structures. Bathed in the light of such revelation, mere words must turn to song and sing the praises of our God who has given such gifts to his children, for "Great is our Lord, and of great power: his understanding is infinite!"



1) This phrase is formed from the names of the letters with the letter Vav () prefixed to the second word, which is how the conjunctive, “and” is indicated in Hebrew.