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Volume 33 - Page 215 of 253 Index | Zoom | |
Truth in the Balance.
#1. A Preliminary Study of
the Figure of the Balances in Scripture.
pp. 81 - 84
Every reader of the Scriptures is familiar with that dramatic incident recorded by
Daniel, where a finger writes upon the plaster of the wall of the King's palace the words
of doom; Mene, Mene, Tekel, Upharsin, which, being interpreted, meant:--
"MENE: God hath numbered thy kingdom, and finished it.
TEKEL: Thou art weighed in the balances and art found wanting.
PERES: Thy kingdom is divided, and given to the Medes and Persians"
(Dan. 5: 26-28).
What, in a specific sense, was true of Belshazzar, is true of us all, for it is written,
"There is none righteous, no, not one . . . . . all have sinned, and come short of the glory
of God" (Rom. 3: 10, 23).
In this series we purpose taking the figure of the balances, and bringing before the
reader several aspects of divine truth wherein an observation of balance is of the utmost
importance. Before doing so, however, it will be well if we acquaint ourselves with the
way in which this figure of the balances is used in Scripture. The earliest reference is in
Gen. 23: 16, where "Abraham weighed to Ephron the silver, which he had named in
the audience of the sons of Heth, four hundred shekels of silver, current money with the
Anyone at all acquainted with the religion of ancient Egypt will remember the
prominent place the "weighing of the heart" occupies in the, so-called, Book of the Dead,
and the constellation known as Libra, "The Scales", in the signs of the Zodiac, shows that
from earliest antiquity scales and weighs were known to men. The Hebrew word
Moznayim, which is found in the O.T., is the Hebrew name for this sign, Libra, and the
brightest star of this constellation is named Zuben al Genubi, "The price which is
deficient", and another bright star is named Zuben al Chemali, "The price which covers"
(Dr. Bullinger's The Witness of the Stars).
The standard weight was fixed as far back as the time of Moses, for we read of "The
shekel (or weight) of the sanctuary" (Exod. 30: 13, 24; Lev. 5: 15). Job also uses the
figure of the balance, saying:
"Oh that my grief were thoroughly weighed, and my calamity laid in the balances
together! For now it would be heavier than the sand of the sea" (Job 6: 2, 3).
"Let me be weighed in an even balance, that God may know mine integrity" (Job 31: 6).
The word translated "even" here is tsedeq, "right" or "just".