Bible Prophecy Research
Title: The Numbers 10, 11, and 12
Submitted by: email@example.com
Date: October 11, 1998
Update: April 06, 2001
The Numbers 10, 11, and 12
Number in Scripture
Its Supernatural Design and Spiritual Significance
E. W. Bullinger
It has been already pointed out that ten is one of the perfect numbers, and
signifies the perfection of Divine order, commencing, as it does, an altogether new
series of numbers. The first decade is the representative of the whole numeral system, and
originates the system of calculation called "decimals," because the whole system
of numeration consists of so many tens, of which the first is a type of the whole.
Completeness of order, marking the entire round of anything, is, therefore, the
ever-present signification of the number ten. It implies that nothing is wanting;
that the number and order are perfect; that the whole cycle is complete.
completed the antediluvian age in the tenth generation from God.
THE TEN COMMANDMENTS
contain all that is necessary, and no more than is necessary, both as to their number
and their order, while
THE LORD'S PRAYER
is completed in ten clauses. *
* These clauses have the significance of their respective numbers:--
The first, God's sovereignty.
The second, Jehovah's manifested Name.
The third, the realization of God's kingdom.
The fourth first mentions the earth.
The fifth, the gift of grace supplying our need.
The sixth treats of man's sin.
The seventh pleads for spiritual guidance.
The eighth pleads for final deliverance from all evil.
The ninth sums up the divine glory (3 squared), while
The tenth completes the eternal cycles.
represent the whole of what was due from man to God, as marking and recognisiing God's
claim on the whole.
THE REDEMPTION MONEY
was ten gerahs, and thus was acknowledged both what God claimed, and what man
was responsible to give. Now ten gerahs was half a shekel (Exo 30:12-16; Num 3:47). Every
male that was numbered, over 20 years of age, must pay this sum and meet God's claim. *
* When David numbered the people (2 Sam 24 and 1 Chron 21), this
payment was not made and God's claim was not met. Hence the judgment which followed.
But the first-born were to pay ten times as much; for when God took the Levites
instead of the first-born of Israel, there were found 22,273 first-born males, but only
22,000 Levites. So that 273 had to pay the ransom money, which amounted to ten
times ten gerahs. Thus, though the five shekels looked like a variation, the
significance of ten is sustained, for the five shekels were ten times the
"half shekel." (See Numbers 3:12,13,40-51).
THE TEN PLAGUES
(For a "modern, scientific" explanation of the ten plagues, see "The Ten Plagues.")
were representative of the complete circle of God's judgments on Egypt. Exodus 9:14,
"I will...send all my plagues."
is comprised in the ten kingdoms, symbolized by the ten toes on the feet
of the image of Nebuchadnezzar's dream (Dan 2:41), and by the ten horns of the
fourth beast of Daniel's vision (Dan 7:7,20,24, etc.; Rev 12:3, 13:1, 17:3,7,12).
imply the whole of the nations which are to be the scene of Abraham's covenant
possessions (Gen 15:19).
was proved by a completed cycle of ten trials:--
- His departure from Haran.
- His flight to Egypt from the famine.
- In the seizure of Sarah.
- In his war to rescue Lot.
- In his taking Hagar.
- In his circumcision.
- In the second seizure of Sarah at Gerar.
- In the expulsion of Ishmael.
- In the expulsion of Hagar.
- In the offering of Isaac.
THE TEN REBELLIONS
of Israel in the wilderness (Num 14:22) mark the completed series of Israel's
THE SILVER SOCKETS
which formed the foundation of the Tabernacle were 10 x 10 (Exo 38:27). These were made
of silver, and silver is significant of redemption (1 Peter 1:18,19). *
* Ten also completed the number of the curtains (Exo 26:1).
FIRE CAME DOWN FROM HEAVEN
ten times, six of which were in judgment:--
- Genesis 19:24, on Sodom.
- Leviticus 9:24, on the first offerings.
- Leviticus 10:2, on Nadab and Abihu.
- Numbers 11:1, on the murmurers at Taberah.
- Numbers 16:35, on Korah and his company.
- 1 Kings 18:38, on Elijah's offering at Carmel.
- 2 Kings 1:10, on Elijah's enemies.
- 2 Kings 1:12, on Elijah's enemies.
- 1 Chronicles 21:26, on David's sacrifice.
- 2 Chronicles 7:1, on Solomon's sacrifice.
TEN TIMES THE PEOPLE SHOUTED FOR JOY
- Leviticus 9:24, when the fire from heaven consumed the first sacrifices.
- Joshua 6:20, at the taking of Jericho.
- 1 Samuel 4:5, when the Ark was brought into the camp.
- 1 Samuel 10:24, when Saul was chosen king.
- 1 Samuel 17:20, when Israel went to fight the Philistines.
- 1 Samuel 17:52, when pursuing them.
- 2 Samuel 6:15 (1 Chron 15:28), when the Ark was brought back from the house of
- 2 Chronicles 13:15, when God smote Jeroboam before Abijah.
- 2 Chronicles 15:14, when Asa and the people heard Oded's prophecy.
- Ezra 3:11, when the foundation of the second Temple was laid.
THE TEN VIRGINS
represent the whole of the nation of Israel (as distinct from the elect remnant, which
is the Bride); * while the five denotes those who by grace will be able to
say, "This is our God, we have waited for Him."
* The popular interpretation of this parable cannot be the correct one,
for we cannot, in one parable, take two totally different classes of persons as
representing one and the same person. It is impossible to take the Church as
represented by both the Ten Virgins and the Bride! If the Church is the Bride, then it
cannot be the Virgins. If the Church is represented by the Ten Virgins, then it cannot be
the Bride. The only escape from the dilemma is not to read into the Gospel of
Matthew that which was the subject of a subsequent revelation (Rom 16:25,26; Eph 3:1-11;
Col 1:26,27); but to interpret Matthew by what was already the subject of previous
revelation in the Old Testament about the Bride.
GOD'S RIGHTEOUS CURSES
are completed in a series of ten:--
- Genesis 3:14, 15, on the serpent.
- Genesis 3:17, the ground.
- Genesis 4:11, Cain.
- Genesis 9:25, Cainan.
- Joshua 6:17, Jericho.
- Joshua 6:28, Achan, Joshua 7:12, Achan.
- Joshua 9:23, Gibeonites.
- Judges 9:57, Shechemites.
- 1 Kings 16:34, Hiel the Bethelite.
- Mark 11:21, The Fig-tree.
"I HAVE SINNED."
Ten * persons complete the series of those who uttered this confession, and
acknowledged their desert of divine judgment:--
* Of these ten, six were individual (the number of man),
while four were on behalf of the nation--"We."
- Pharaoh, Exodus 9:27, 10:16.
- Balaam, Numbers 22:34.
- Achan, Joshua 7:20.
- Saul, 1 Samuel 15:24,30, 26:21.
- David, 2 Samuel 12:13, 24:10,17; 1 Chronicles 21:8,17; Psa 41:4, 51:4.
- Shimei, 2 Samuel 19:20.
- Hezekiah, 2 Kings 18:14 (rendered "offended").
- Job 7:20.
- Micah 7:9.
- Nehemiah 1:6.
is spoken of ten times as the "Tabernacle of Witness," or
"Tabernacle of Testimony." Of these, five are mish-kahn, Exodus
38:21; Numbers 1:50,53 (twice), 10:11. This has special reference to the Tabernacle as the
dwelling-place of God, from shahcan, "to dwell." Mish-kahn means
the dwelling-place of God (Exo 25:8), and is therefore never used by the Holy Spirit of
The other five are oh-el, Numbers 17:7,8,10, 18:2; 2 Chronicles 24:6. Oh-el
means simply a tent, and has special reference to the meeting-place of the people by
appointment or at appointed seasons. This is the word which is used by the Holy Spirit of
the "tent of the congregation."
THE TEN WORDS OF PSALM 119
complete the cycle of the Divine description of His Word. One or other of these ten
words occurs in every verse (except 122), viz., Way, Testimony, Precepts, Commandments,
Laying, Law, Judgment, Righteousness, Statutes, Word. These, the Massorah says,
"correspond to the Ten Commandments."
THE TENTH GENERATION
completed and represented the whole existence of the family or nation. In Deuteronomy
23:3 we read that "an Ammonite or Moabite shall not enter into the congregation of
the LORD; even to their tenth generation shall they not enter into the congregation of the
LORD for ever." The reason is given in verses 4 and 5. See also Nehemiah 13:1.
THE PARABLES OF THE KINGDOM
are ten in number in the Gospel of Matthew. Seven in chapter 13, and three
in chapters 22 and 25.
THE UNRIGHTEOUS WHO SHALL NOT ENTER
the kingdom of God are enumerated in ten particulars (1 Cor 6:9,10).
THE SECURITY OF THE SAINTS
is set forth in a ten-fold enumeration, which completes the whole cycle of assurance to
all who are "in Christ," Romans 8:38,39. They are given in two fives:--
"For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities,
nor powers; nor things present, nor things to come, nor height, nor depth, nor any other
THE TEN I AM'S OF JESUS IN JOHN
- "I am the Bread of Life" (6:35).
- "I am the Bread of Life which came down from heaven" (6:41).
- "I am the Living Bread" (6:51).
- "I am the Light of the world" (8:12).
- "I am One that bear witness of Myself" (8:18).
- "I am the Door of the sheep" (10:7,9).
- "I am the Good Shepherd" (10:14).
- "I am the Resurrection and the Life" (14:6).
- "I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life" (14:6).
- "I am the True Vine" (15:1,5).
THE REPEATED NAMES
Ten completes the perfect cycle of the repeated Names. Moreover we shall note
that these are divided significantly. Of these ten, seven are spoken directly to
individual human beings, while three are spoken by the Lord in different
connections. Of these seven, four are in the Old Testament, and three are in the New
- Abraham, Abraham, Genesis 22:11.
- Jacob, Jacob, Genesis 46:2.
- Moses, Moses, Exodus 3:4.
- Samuel, Samuel, 1 Samuel 3:10.
- Martha, Martha, Luke 10:41.
- Simon, Simon, Luke 22:31.
- Saul, Saul, Acts 9:4.
- Lord, Lord, Matthew 7:21,22, 25:11; Luke 6:46; 13:25.
- Eloi, Eloi, Mark 15:34; Matthew 27:46; Psa 22:1.
- Jerusalem, Jerusalem, Matthew 23:37; Luke 13:34.
WORDS AND PHRASES WHICH OCCUR TEN TIMES
among these may be mentioned:--
zair, the crown of the Ark of the Covenant.
keeyor, Laver, ten times in Exodus and Leviticus with regard to the Tabernacle;
and ten times in Kings and Chronicles with regard to the Temple.
kain, the foot or base of the laver.
hagion, holy (7 of these are in the plural for the Holy of Holies).
dikaioma, righteous requirement.
pantokrator, Almighty, used only of God (9 times in Revelation).
katabolee kosmou, the foundation of the world.
legei kuriou, saith the Lord.
calls attention to the fact that there are:--
Ten different words used for Idols.
Ten for Prophet, viz., Ambassador, Faithful, Servant, Messenger, Seer, Watchman, Seer of
Vision, Dreamer, Prophet, Man of God (Avoth, ch. 34).
Ten designations are applied to the Word of God, viz., Scripture, Proverb,
Interpretation, Dark Saying, Oracle, Utterance, Decree, Burden, Prophecy, Vision.
Ten different words for Joy.
Ten generations from Adam to Noah; and
Ten from Noah to Abraham.
Abraham was tried with ten trials.
If ten is the number which marks the perfection of Divine order, then eleven
is an addition to it, subversive of and undoing that order. If twelve is the
number which marks the perfection of Divine government, then eleven falls short of
it. So that whether we regard it as being 10 + 1, or 12 - 1, it is the number which marks,
disorder, disorganization, imperfection, and disintegration.
There is not much concerning it in the Word of God, but what there is is significant,
especially as a factor.
THE DUKES OF EDOM
were eleven in number (Gen 36:40-43), and Edom, though closely related to
Israel, was different from it in order and government, while the bitterest hatred existed
between them. The word for "Duke" is a multiple of 13.
THE ELEVEN SONS OF JACOB
told of the disintegration and disorganization in Jacob's family, which made it
possible for it to be said "one is not."
FROM HOREB TO KADESH BARNEA
was a journey of eleven days (Deut 1:2). One more day would have carried them to
the complete administration of all those wonderful laws which God had given them.
ELI, HOPHNI, AND PHINEHAS
have for their gematria the number 462, the factors of which are 11 and
42; both significant of the disorder in Eli's house, and of disintegration in Israel.
JEHOIAKIM REIGNED ELEVEN YEARS
when Nebuchadnezzar came up and began his disintegrating work on Jerusalem (2 Kings
23:36, 34:1; 2 Chron 36:5,6).
ZEDEKIAH REIGNED ELEVEN YEARS
when Nebuchadnezzar completed the work by putting an end to Israel's rule in Jerusalem
(2 Chron 36:11; Jer 52:1), for "in the eleventh year the city was broken up"
THE ELEVENTH YEAR
in which Ezekiel prophesied against Tyre (Eze 26:1) and against Egypt (30:20 and 31:1)
was the eleventh year of Zedekiah, in which Jerusalem was broken up. And the
threefold repetition of it is to impress us with the fact that Tyre and Egypt should be
broken up, as Jerusalem had been.
THE ELEVEN APOSTLES
witness of disintegration even amongst the Twelve (Acts 2:14, etc.); while
THE ELEVENTH HOUR
(Matt 20:6,9) is proverbial as being contrary alike both to what is right in order and
THE LIFE OF OUR LORD ON EARTH
was about 33 years (3 x 11), and then He was "cut off," and "we
see not yet all things put under Him" (Dan 9:26; Heb 2:8).
occurs only twice, both referring to days of defective administration, marked by the
fact that there was "no king":--
Judges 16:5, the Philistine bribe which deprived Israel of their mighty judge and
Judges 17:2, etc., connected with the introduction of idolatry into Israel, which
brought with it trouble and disintegration; added to God's order and ordinances for them;
and in the end caused the ruin and loss of all government.
Dan and Ephraim were the two offending tribes, for Micah, who made the image with the eleven
hundred shekels, was an Ephraimite, and the tribe that stole it and his priest was the
Tribe of Dan. Both are omitted from the tribes in Revelation 7, according to the
declaration of Jehovah in Deuteronomy 29:18-20, that the "man, woman, family, or
tribe" which should introduce idolatry into Israel, "the LORD shall BLOT OUT HIS
is a perfect number, signifying perfection of government, or of governmental
perfection. It is found as a multiple in all that has to do with rule. The sun
which "rules" the day, and the moon and stars which "govern" the
night, do so by their passage through the twelve signs of the Zodiac which
completes the great circle of the heavens of 360 (12 x 30) degrees or divisions, and thus
govern the year.
Twelve is the product of 3 (the perfectly Divine and heavenly number) and
4 (the earthly, the number of what is material and organic).
While seven is composed of 3 added to 4, twelve is 3 multiplied
by 4, and hence denotes that which can scarcely be explained in words, but which the
spiritual perception can at once appreciate, viz., organization, the products
denoting production and multiplication and increase of all that is contained in the two
numbers separately. The 4 is generally prominently seen in the twelve.
THERE WERE TWELVE PATRIARCHS
from Seth to Noah and his family, and twelve from Shem to Jacob.
THE TWELVE SONS OF ISRAEL
though actually thirteen in number, there are never more than twelve names in
any one list. There are about 18 enumerations altogether, but in each list one or other is
omitted. Generally it is Levi, but not always. In Revelation 7 both Dan and Ephraim are
omitted, but the enumeration is still twelve, Levi and Joseph being introduced for
this special sealing of the remnant which shall go unscathed through the great
Then there were twelve Judges or Saviours.
THE TEMPLE OF SOLOMON
has the number twelve as the predominating factor, in contrast with the
Tabernacle, which had the number five. This agrees with the grace which shines in
the Tabernacle, and with the glory of the kingdom which is displayed in the Temple.
When we come to the New Testament we find the same great principle pervading the
Apostolic government as we see in the Patriarchal and National, for we have:
The twelve Apostles.
The twelve foundations in the heavenly Jerusalem.
The twelve gates.
The twelve pearls.
The twelve angels.
THE MEASUREMENT OF THE NEW JERUSALEM
will be 12,000 furlongs square, while the wall will be 144 (12 x 12) cubits, Revelation
The number of the sealed in Revelation 7:4 will be 144,000, and all that has to do with
the Twelve Tribes is necessarily pervaded by this number, such as the stones in the
High Priest's breastplate, the stones taken out of the Jordan, the number of the spies,
etc. etc., and therefore we have not referred to all such reference in these pages.
TWELVE PERSONS WERE ANOINTED
for government of various kinds. Of course, all kings, priests, prophets, and healed
lepers were anointed; but the circumstances of the anointing of twelve individuals
is specially recorded. Of these, five were priests (Aaron and his four sons, Exodus 6:23)
and seven were kings:
- Aaron, Exodus 29:7,9, etc.
- Nadab, Exodus 29:7,9, etc.
- Abihu, Exodus 29:7,9, etc.
- Eleazar, Exodus 29:7,9, etc.
- Ithamar, Exodus 29:7,9, etc.
- Saul, 1 Samuel 10:1.
- David, * 1 Samuel 16:13.
- Absalom, 2 Samuel 19:10.
- Solomon, 1 Kings 1:39.
- Jehu, 2 Kings 9:6.
- Joash, 2 Kings 11:12.
- Jehoahaz, 2 Kings 23:30.
* David was anointed three times, viz:
by Samuel, 1 Samuel 16:13;
by the men of Judah, 2 Samuel 2:4;
by the elders of Israel, 2 Samuel 5:3.
It will be observed from the above list that Saul, the man of man's choice, is
thus stamped with the number 6. David, the man of God's choice is stamped with the
number seven. For Saul and David are the sixth and seventh respectively in order.
The words, "a man after God's own heart," mean simply a man of God's choice,
and not, as infidels are never tired of asserting, that God approved of all the sins which
David fell into.
of age was Jesus when He first appears in public (Luke 2:42) and utters His
of angels mark the perfection of angelic powers (Matt 26:53).
THE HALF OF TWELVE
sometimes denotes interruption or defect in human government, while
THE NUMBER OF OCCURRENCES
of words agrees with its signification, e.g., aulee, "palace," occurs twelve
How Many Dimensions Are There?
You know the three physical dimensions...and the fourth dimension, time. For years,
people have speculated about other dimensions. Experts in theoretical physics now say the
major theories about the universe make sense together -- and all the math seems to work --
if there are 10 dimensions.
(Actual Facts: Four items a day of enduring insignificance, UPI, Oct. 9, 1998)
Number Patterns in Scripture by Susan Kanen