| || |The Berean Expositor
Volume 2 & 3 - Page 116 of 130 Index | Zoom | |
word "perish," so shamad is translated in the majority of cases (86 out of a possible 92
occurrences) by the word "destroy." It occurs in Deut. 9: 3, and is the result of a
consuming fire. Again in Deut. 9: 14 it is threatened against Israel, and explained as
being the words of God, "Let Me alone, that I may destroy them and blot out their name
from under heaven." This reference will show the awful fulness of the word shamad. It
is this word which comes first in the decree of the Jews' enemy, "to destroy, to kill, and
to cause to perish" (Esther 3: 13).
When the Lord spoke concerning Israel and its punishment He said, "I will destroy it
from off the face of the earth; saving that I will not utterly destroy the house of Jacob,
saith the Lord" (Amos 9: 8). Here the Lord makes a provision, an exception, a clause
which does not follow the threatened destruction of the sinner. Jacob used the word
"destroy" in Gen. 34: 30 to mean the effect of being killed (see for further reference
such passages as Lev. 26: 30; Numb. 33: 52; Deut. 1: 27, and Judges 21: 16). To
destroy, abolish, or demolish is the meaning of the word. This is the fate of the
"All the wicked will He destroy" (Psalm 114: 20).
"The transgressors shall be destroyed together" (Psalm 37: 38).
"When the wicked spring as the grass, and when all the workers of iniquity do
flourish, it is that they shall be destroyed for ever" (Psalm 92: 7).
Again we submit that the cumulative witness of the use of these two words confirms
the Scriptural statement that "the wages of sin is death," and that the idea of eternal
conscious suffering is as foreign to the meaning and usage of shamad as it is to the
meaning and usage of abad.
There are one or two more Hebrew words which we must consider together; these we
must leave for another occasion. We trust our readers will not think the time or space
wasted in thrashing out the true meaning of these words. It is our only way of gaining the
truth. Man-made definitions are all contaminated by tradition, for which we have neither
regard nor respect, from which we ask no quarter, and to which, for the sake of the truth,
"we yield subjection, no, not for an hour" (Gal. 2: 5).
The Wages of Sin.
"Not in the words which man's wisdom teacheth,
but which the Holy Spirit teacheth" (I Cor. 2: 13).
In our last paper upon this important theme we submitted to the reader the Scriptural
meaning and usage of two Hebrew words, viz., abad and shamad, and found that in the
first case the word "perish" was an unequivocal and true rendering, and that in the second
instance the meaning was "to destroy," or "to be destroyed."