God created everything out of nothing. “In the beginning, God created the heaven and the earth. And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters” (Genesis 1:1-2). The word “God” is the English translation of the Hebrew word “Elohim.” Elohim can also be translated as gods (plural). Elohim is defined as the supreme God, magistrates, or superlative being. In these first two verses in the Bible, we see two of the Persons or manifestations of Elohim, God the Father and God the Holy Spirit.
In John 1, we see the rest of the story. “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God. All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made” (John 1:1-3). In these first three verses in the Book of John, we see the third Person or manifestation of Elohim that was involved in the creation. He is called the Word. Elohim is one God, existing in three coequal, coeternal, and consubstantial Persons. These three Persons are distinct but share one essence or nature, a concept Christians call the Trinity (three in one). It is a mystery that is beyond comprehension by the human mind.
In John 1:14, we understand that the Word was made flesh. “And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father) full of grace and truth.” The God, Word, was made in the image of man. This is the opposite of when God made man on the sixth day, and He said, “Let us make man in our image, after our likeness” (Genesis 1:26). Notice how God uses the plural words of “us” and “ours” indicating His triune nature. John then names this Word made flesh, “For the law was given by Moses, but grace and truth came by Jesus Christ. No man hath seen God at any time, the only begotten Son, which is in the bosom of the Father, he hath declared him” (John 1:17-18). Jesus Christ, formerly known as the Word, is the Son of God, the third Person of the Triune Godhead, “whose goings forth have been from of old, from everlasting” (Micah 5:2).
God is one, yet manifests Himself in three Persons, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. We are told in Isaiah 11 that a descendant of David, namely Jesus Christ, will have the seven-fold Spirit of God upon Him (Isaiah 11:1). The seven-fold Spirit consists of the Spirit of the Lord, the Spirit of wisdom, the Spirit of understanding, the Spirit of counsel, the Spirit of might, the Spirit of knowledge, and the Spirit of the fear of the Lord. The Book of Revelation mentions the “seven Spirits of God” three times (Rev.3:1; 4:5; 5:6) and “seven Spirits” once (Rev. 1:4). So, here we see three numbers that best represent God, 1, 3, and 7.
These meanings or spiritual representations of numbers in the Bible are known as biblical numerology. Biblical numerology should not be confused with occult numerology, which uses numbers to predict future events, such as is the case with astrology and fortune-telling. Biblical numerology is simply God’s way of using numbers repetitively in His word, the Bible, to explain or highlight their spiritual significance in a meaningful way. God not only uses His word to communicate with mankind but with numbers as well. I have written many articles dealing with this subject, including the numbers 3, 5, 7, 9, 10, 12, 19, and others.
Let’s review the numbers 1, 3, and 7 in the Bible and how they relate to Elohim.
THE NUMBER 1
The number 1 represents unity. When there is one, there is no division. Everything is in harmony. As a cardinal number, it denotes unity; as a cardinal number, it denotes primacy. In Deuteronomy, the Lord says, “Hear O Israel, the Lord our God is one Lord” (Deuteronomy 6:4). Jesus quoted this Scripture when he said, “The first of all the commandments is, Hear, O Israel; The Lord our God is one Lord” (Mark 12:29).
Sometimes God is called the Holy One. “Thus says the Lord, your Redeemer, The Holy One of Israel: I am the Lord your God, Who teaches you to profit, Who leads you by the way you should go” (Isaiah 48:17). Jesus said the first and greatest commandment was “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and all your soul, and with all your mind” (Matthew 24:37). He was quoting Deuteronomy 6:5.
God is the first (and the last). “Thus says the Lord, the King of Israel, And his Redeemer, the Lord of hosts: “I am the First and I am the Last; Besides Me there is no God” (Isaiah 44:6). Likewise, John recorded the words of Jesus by an angel, “I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End, says the Lord, who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty” (Revelation 1:8). Elohim is the one and only God. There is no one like Him.
“Jesus is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. For by Him all things were created that are in heaven and that are on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or principalities or powers. All things were created through Him and for Him. And He is before all things, and in Him all things consist. And He is the head of the body, the church, who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in all things He may have the preeminence” (Colossians 1:15-18). Jesus Christ is called the first of the firstfruits of those who have died and been resurrected back to eternal life in an immortal body (1 Corinthians 15:20-21).
THE NUMBER 3
The number three represents divine perfection. The number 3 is associated with the Godhead, for there are 3 persons in God: the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. The first occurrence of the number 3 is in Genesis 1 and describes the 3rd day of creation. “And God said, Let the waters under the heaven be gathered together unto one place, and let the dry land appear: and it was so” (Genesis 1:9). On the 3rd day, the earth was caused to rise up out of the water, symbolic of the resurrection of Jesus Christ. Three is the number of the resurrection, for it was on the 3rd day that Jesus rose again from the dead (Luke 24:7).
God’s attributes are 3: omniscience, omnipresence, and omnipotence. There are 3 great epochs of time – past, present, and future. Matter is made up of solids, liquids, or gases. Time consists of the past, present, and future. Space can be measured in length, width, and depth. Man was made in the image of God, with a form (body), soul (mind), and spirit.
Jesus himself represents the number 3 in many aspects, even though he is most mentioned as the number 2 deity – the Son. There are 3 years of Jesus’ ministry, which testify to the completeness of Israel’s failure to accept him as their Messiah (Luke 13:7). Jesus’ 3-fold “it is written” replies to Satan show that the Word of God is the perfection of all ministry (Matthew 4). The 3-fold voice from Heaven revealed the completeness of God’s approval of His beloved Son Jesus (Matthew 3:17 and John 12:28).
The perfection of Jesus in regard to his 3 offices on earth is shown in His being prophet, priest, and king, raised up from among His brethren (Deuteronomy 18:15-18; Acts 7:37).
There are 3 witnesses in heaven that testify that Jesus Christ came by water and blood (which refers to his baptism and crucifixion): the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost (1 John 5:7). There are 3 that bear witness in earth: the Spirit, and the water, and the blood (1 John 5:8).
At Jesus’ crucifixion, Pilate wrote a title and put it on the cross. The writing was, JESUS OF NAZARETH THE KING OF THE JEWS. The inscriptions of the cross in 3 languages (Hebrew, Greek, and Latin) show the completeness of His rejection by Jews and Gentiles alike (John 19:19).
I believe Jesus was crucified in the year AD 33 (3 x 11). It was at the 6th hour that he was crucified (John 19:14) with two other people (three people total), and it was for three hours (from the 6th to the 9th) that darkness enveloped the land (Matthew 27:45). Jesus’ death came in the 9th hour (3 x 3) when he uttered 3 words: “It is finished.” (John 19:30). In Israel, according to the Hebrew calendar, the 9th hour is 3:00 PM. So in other words, in the year AD 33, at 3 PM Israel time, there was darkness in the land of Israel for 3 hours, after which Jesus uttered his last 3 words – “It is finished.” Mankind’s salvation was now secure and complete for all who put their trust and faith in Him. Three days later, as proof of Jesus’ deity, Jesus was resurrected from the grave and was seen and heard by many.
I believe the number 33 represents Jesus. Jesus was a descendant of King David, who was the 33rd generation from Adam. Matthew 1 gives the genealogy of Jesus. “The book of the generation of Jesus Christ, the son of David, the son of Abraham” (Matthew 1:1). David was described by Samuel the prophet as “a man after the Lord’s own heart” (1 Samuel 13:14). David reigned over all 12 tribes of Israel from Jerusalem for 33 years.
Jesus started his ministry at 33 years of age (some say 30) and was crucified in AD 33. The word “firstfruits” is mentioned 33 times in the Bible (NKJV). Christ is the firstfruits of the dead. “But now Christ is risen from the dead, and has become the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep” (1 Corinthians 15:20). Jesus will one day return to set up His millennial kingdom, for He is King of kings and Lord of lords. The “kingdom of heaven” is mentioned 33 times in the Book of Matthew. “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven” (Matthew 7:21). The “kingdom of God” is mentioned 33 times in the Book of Luke (NKJV). “So you also, when you see these things happening, know that the kingdom of God is near” (Luke 21:31).
Although 7 is the dominant number in the Book of Revelation, mentioned 58 times, the number 3 is mentioned quite often as well. “Three” is used 11 times, and “third” is used 22 times – for a total of 33 times. Is this a coincidence or what? In my opinion, it is “or what.” The Book of Revelation is about the revelation of Jesus Christ concerning the end times.
For more on the biblical significance of the number 3 in Scripture, see God’s Perfect Number: Part 1 :: By Randy Nettles :: Rapture Ready.
THE NUMBER 7
The number 7 is God’s special number, for it signifies spiritual perfection and completion. The Bible mentions it more than any other number other than one. Leviticus has the most occurrences of the number seven with 66, while Revelation has 57.
The first natural division of time is designated by the number seven. On the seventh day, God rested from His work of Creation. The first calendar known to man was the 7-day calendar. When God ordained the ritual of the Feasts of the Lord for the children of Israel, He was pointing humans toward Jesus’ work of redemption. The number 7 is again stamped upon it in all its times and seasons: the seventh day was the holy day; the seventh month was specially hallowed by its number of sacred gatherings (feasts); the seventh year was the Sabbath year of rest for the land; while 7 x 7 years marked the following year as the Jubilee (Leviticus 25:4, 8).
The word “seven” and its compounds (sevens, seventh, and sevenfold) are mentioned 490 (70 x 7) times in the Bible: 392 (56 x 7) times in the Old Testament and 98 (14 x 7) times in the New Testament. Seven is mentioned 368 times, sevens is used 2 times, sevenfold is mentioned 5 times, and seventh is used 115 times for a grand total of 490 times. The number 490 is very significant, as it is the number (70 x 7) of years implied in the prophecy of Daniel 9:24-27. These verses are perhaps the most discussed and debated verses in the entire Bible.
There are numerous calendars in the world, and they have been revised throughout the centuries; but the weekly calendar of 1 through 7 days (now known as Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, and Saturday) has not changed throughout the millennia. Sunday is the first day of the week, and Saturday is the last day (7th) of the week or the Sabbath.
There are seven colors of the spectrum and in the rainbow. In music, there are seven notes of the scale. In nature and science, there are seven divisions of classification for the animal and vegetable kingdoms: Kingdom, Sub-Kingdom, Class, Order, Family, Genus, and Species. An example would be: Animal, Vertebrata, Mammalia, Carnivore, Canine, Dog, and Golden Retriever. There are seven ages of man according to Philo: Infancy (child), Childhood (boy), Youth (lad, stripling), Adolescence (young man), Manhood (man), Decline (old man), and Senility (aged man). 7 written in binary code is 111—The Trinity, or complex unity of God.
In the New Testament, the Book of Revelation best portrays the meaning and importance of the number 7. Revelation is about God’s perfect and complete plan of redemption for mankind and the earth, and God’s complete victory over Satan and death. The Book of Revelation also focuses on Jesus Christ, his 2nd Coming, his victory over the Anti-Christ and his evil followers, and the establishment of his Millennium Kingdom. The apostle John is given a vision of prophecy by the Holy Spirit regarding the end times. First, John is given a series of messages from Jesus to the seven churches of Asia. Then, Jesus calls John (or his spirit) up into Heaven where he is shown how the end times for mankind and planet Earth will transpire.
The exact word “seven” is used 56 times (7 x 8) in the Book of Revelation. In Revelation, John mentions 14 (2 x 7) words that have the number 7 preceding them: seven churches, seven candlesticks, seven stars, seven Spirits of God, seven seals, seven horns, seven eyes, seven angels, seven trumpets, seven thunders, seven heads, seven crowns, seven plagues, and seven golden vials full of the wrath of God. All of these sevens are definitely symbolic of God’s spiritual perfection and completion.
Also in Revelation, the word/name “Jesus” is used seven times, and “Jesus Christ” is used seven times. The word “Lord” (Strong’s Concordance: G2962 – the name given to God, the Messiah) is used 21 (3 x 7) times in the Book of Revelation: Lord is used 7 times, Lord God is used 10 times, Lord of lords is used 2 times, and Lord Jesus is used 2 times. See Seven: God’s Perfect Number and it’s Biblical Significance :: By Randy Nettles – Rapture Ready for more information regarding the number 7 and its significance in the Bible.
It’s obvious there is design and patterns in nature and Scripture, and that the numbers 1, 3, and 7 turn up with amazing regularity.
GEMATRIA IN SCRIPTURE
Merriam-Webster defines “Gematria” as a cryptograph in the form of a word whose letters have the numerical values of a word taken as the hidden meaning. The study of numbers and patterns in the Bible is known as biblical Gematria. In Hebrew and Greek, every letter is given a numerical value and those values can be added up to achieve the numerical value of a word. Hebrew scholars are not the only ones who have given consideration to the concept of Gematria, as it is also common to other religions and cultures. Plato made reference to Greek Gematria, and the Abjad numerals are the Arabic equivalent.
Because the Old Testament (the Tanakh) was written in Hebrew and the New Testament in Greek, and because those languages did not have separate numbering systems (the letter themselves stood for numbers), every letter has a numeric value. Therefore, every letter, word, and sentence can be quantified by adding up the value of the letter, the word, and the sentence. The Hebrew alef-bet (alphabet) consists of twenty-two letters, each one having an ordinate value and a Gematria value. The ordinate value is simply the order in which it appears in the alphabet and ranges from 1-22. The Gematria (the Geometry of God) value ranges from 1-10 for the first ten letters, 20-90 for the next eight letters, and 100-400 for the next four letters.
An example of (possible) Gematria in the Bible is found in Revelation 13:16-18. “He causes all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and slave, to receive a mark on their right hand or on their foreheads, and that no one may buy or sell except one who has the mark or the name of the beast, or the number of his name. Here is wisdom. Let him who has understanding calculate the number of the beast, for it is the number of a man: His number is 666.”
THE BERISHEET PROPHECY
“In (the) beginning created God the heavens and the earth” (Genesis 1:1). The very first word spoken by the Lord that is recorded in scripture (Genesis 1:1 – the 6-day creation story) is the single word Berisheet. It means “In beginning” (“the” is only added in English). Berisheet is composed of six Hebrew letters. Each Hebrew letter has a number, a picture, and a word attached to it. So the children of Israel could read the words or understand the pictures to read God’s Word. The first letter in Berisheet (Hebrew is read from right to left) is the word Bet. Its picture is that of a house or tent. The Hebrew alphabet doesn’t use vowels, so you’ll see variations of spelling depending on what vowels are added in the English.
The second letter in Berisheet is the word Resh. Its picture is that of a person’s head, meaning the head person or prince. Note: Daniel called the Messiah (Jesus) the Prince of princes in Daniel 8:25. The third letter in Berisheet is Aleph. Its picture is the head of an ox representing strength or a strong leader. The ultimate strength is, of course, God. The fourth letter in Berisheet is Shin. Its picture is of teeth, meaning devouring or destruction. The fifth letter in Berisheet is Yod, and its picture is that of a hand. The last letter (sixth) in Berisheet is Tau. Its picture is a “T” or a cross.
If you take the first two letters of Berisheet, Bet and Resh, they spell the word Hebrew word bar, which means “Son.” The first three letters in Berisheet spell out Bara, or Created/Creator. And if you sound out all the letters in Berisheet, it says, “The head of the house (and buried within Berisheet’s first three letters, are two words, Son and Creator) is destroyed (willingly) by His own hand on a cross.” All this is in the first sound out of God’s mouth when He created the universe. The first thing He says is that His Son, Who is the Creator, will go to the cross and have His hands pierced in order to shed innocent blood to pay for our sins. This prophecy is confirmed in John 1, when the Son, Jesus Christ, is introduced.
THE GEMATRIA IN GENESIS 1:1
When one considers the value of the letters, words, and sentences in the Bible – starting with Genesis 1:1, amazing patterns of numbers are discovered. The numbers 3, 7, 37, 73, and 137 show up repeatedly. There has been much written on this subject, so we will just look at one verse of Scripture, the very first verse in the Bible, Genesis 1:1: “In (the) beginning created God the heavens and the earth.”
The Hebrew word for Father is “ab,” or the letter Aleph (1) and Bet (2). Putting these two characters together, we arrive at 3 – the number representing the Trinity, or the triune complex nature of God – that He is Father, Son, and Spirit.
Genesis 1:1 consists of 7 Hebrew words: Berisheet (In the beginning), Bara (created), Elohim (God), et (a particle used in front of the direct object of a verb, in this case, “the heavens and the earth”), Hashamayim (the heavens), Ve’et (conjunction that means “and” and is used to connect two nouns), and Ha’aretz (the earth).
The verse contains 28 letters (4 x 7 =28). The Gematria of the entire verse adds up to 2,701, or 73 x 37 = 2,701.
Jeremiah 10:12 ties in with Genesis 1:1 in that it states that God established the world by His wisdom. The gematria value of the word wisdom is 73, while the ordinate value is 37. 37 x 73 = 2,701, which is the same gematria value of Genesis 1:1.
Genesis 1:1, in its original Hebrew, has a standard gematria value of 2,701. 2701 is the 73rd triangular and the 37th hexagonal number. It only has two factors (besides 1 and 2701), 37 and 73. Genesis 1:1 is 7 words long and consists of 28 letters. 28 is the 7th triangle and the 3rd hexagon. The first word is 6 letters. 6 is the first perfect number (1+2+3=6), while 28 is the second perfect number (1+2+4+7+14=28). The fact that both of these are ‘explicitly’ given is somewhat curious, considering that they are the only two perfect numbers below 100.
Ivan Panin, who wrote more than 42, 000 pages of Bible gematria notes, found over 30 multiples of seven in the very first verse of the Bible (Genesis 1:1). Here are 12 of them:
- The seven words in the first verse of the Bible have exactly 28 (7 x4 ) letters.
- The Gematria of the first and last letters of the first half of the verse is 42 (7 x 6).
- The gematria value of the first and last letters of the second half is 91 (7 x 13).
- The nouns have 14 letters (7 x 2).
- The sum of the nouns (God, heavens, and earth) is 777 (7 x 111).
- The place value of these nouns is 147 (7 x 21).
- The Hebrew verb created has a value of 203 (7 x 29).
- The first 3 words contain the subject and have exactly 14 letters.
- The place value of these letters is 140 (7 x 20).
- Of these 14, the place value of the silent letters is 28 (7 x 4).
- The place value of the non-silent letters is 112 (7 x 16).
- The odd numbers among the 14 total 42 (7 x 6).
For the other 18 examples and some other astonishing biblical gematria, see Gematria (palmoni.net).
We see amazing patterns of numbers from the very beginning of Genesis to the end of Revelation (the last book of the Bible). Patterns of the numbers 3, 7, 37, 73, and of course, 137 (among other numbers and multiples of 7) show up throughout the Bible. In the Old Testament, Hebrew is the original language used, so we search for these patterns and numbers within the Hebrew letters, words, and verses. In the New Testament, Greek is the original language used to locate these numerical patterns.
It’s when the original language of the Old and New Testament is translated into English (with their many different versions/translations) or some other language that the Gematria is corrupted. The original language must be used to find the hidden and correct numbers within the words of Scripture. As Timothy said, “All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness” (2 Timothy 2:16). The Holy Spirit made sure the authors of the Bible used the correct words, in their own language, when they authored their literary works.
THE WORD AS ALPHA AND OMEGA
The Master Designer/Mathematician, the Word (Jesus Christ, the Son), has concealed His key numbers all throughout Scripture – for us to search for, uncover, study, and learn from. In the first chapter of the last Book of the Bible, Revelation, Jesus says, “I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the ending, which is, and which was, and which is to come, the Almighty.” Jesus is saying He is the Word, the true author of the Bible. He is the beginning letter (alpha) and the ending letter (Omega) of the word of God, and everything in between. “In the beginning…. Amen.” (Genesis 1:1-Revelation 22:21). He can be found in every book of the Bible if you look for Him.
Just to reiterate, Jesus repeats the Alpha and Omega statement three more times in Revelation, including chapter 22, which is the last chapter of the Bible. “I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end, the first and the last” (Revelation 22:13). Jesus, in the form of the Word, was there at the beginning of creation, and He will be there when the earth and heavens will be destroyed (or purged) by fire and the new earth and heavens are created (or translated).
The study of words is the study of numbers, as they are intertwined. Solomon, the wisest man in the Old Testament, probably knew something about it, as he said, “It is the glory of God to conceal a thing: but the honor of kings is to search out a matter” (Proverbs 25:2).
God’s very special words and numbers seem to include 1, 3, and 7 in various combinations (including 137). A really amazing YouTube video regarding words and verses in Scripture and their numerical Gematria can be found here: God Math 137 – YouTube.
In Part II, we will examine the number 137 in Science and how it correlates to certain Scriptures and their Gematria.