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OAKS (strong is the meaning of most of the six Hebrew words thus rendered). In the following passages, at least, the word probably denotes the terebinth, or the elm of Hos 4:13, see Teil Tree: Gen 35:4, 1 Kgs 15:8; Jud 6:11, Acts 1:19; 2 Sam 18:9-10, 2 Sam 18:14; 1 Kgs 13:14; 1 Chr 10:12; Isa 1:30; Eze 6:13. In other instances "oak" may denote any strong flourishing tree, Am 2:9, or a grove of such trees.

Botanists find three species of this tree in Palestine. One of the most universal and characteristic bushes of the country is the prickly evergreen-oak (Quercus pseudo-coccifera), which has a leaf like the holly, but smaller. This oak now rarely exceeds 12 feet in height, but when the destruction of trees was less universal it doubtless attained great size and age. "Abraham's Oak," in the field of Mamre, near Hebron, the noblest tree of Southern Palestine, is of this species, and is 23 feet in girth; and there are said to be still finer specimens in the north and east.

The Valonia oak (Q. aegilops) sheds its leaves and more resembles some of our own species. The trunk is unusually massive, and the tree often grows to a magnificent size. It is not seen in the south, but abounds in the north, especially about Mount Tabor and also east of the Jordan, and is doubtless the "oak of Bashan." Isa 2:12-13; Zech 11:2. It produces very large acorns, which are eaten by the poor, while their cups are employed by tanners under the name of Valeria, and exported from many parts of the Turkish empire.

Another kind (Q. infectoria) sometimes occurs in Samaria and Galilee as a small tree with deciduous leaves, white beneath. Travellers through the uninhabited districts of Gilead and Bashan have found there magnificent forests of all three species.

In the Bible we find these noble trees often mentioned for the purpose of designating the locality of important events, as in Gen 35:8; Josh 24:20. Oakwood was used for idols. Isa 44:14.

The word translated "plains" in several passages - Gen 12:6; Gen 13:18; Gen 14:13; Gen 18:1; Deut 11:30; Jud 4:11; Isa 9:6, 1 Chr 9:37; 1 Sam 10:3 - means places noted for one or more oaks. See cut under Abraham's Oak.

OATH, a solemn affirmation, made with an appeal to the Deity in attestation of its truth. Heb 6:16. The custom of taking oaths was in vogue in the earliest patriarchal times. Gen 21:23, but their use is not confined to men. God also has bound himself by oaths. Acts 2:30; Gen 26:3; Deut 29:12, etc. Their use was the subject of legislation, Ex 20:7; Lev 19:12, and our Lord prohibits careless and profane oaths. Matt 5:34-36. Various formularies were employed for oaths, such as: 'As the Lord liveth," 1 Sam 14:39; "Would God," Num 14:2; "As the Lord liveth, and as thy soul liveth." 2 Kgs 2:2, etc. From our Lord's prohibition of profane and careless oaths, we learn that oaths were taken by the more common things, such as the throne of God, Jerusalem, the earth, etc., Matt 5:34, sqq., and the temple, the gold of the temple, and the altar. Matt 23:16-22.

As to-day the elevation of the right hand is associated with taking an oath in our courts, so amongst the Hebrews oaths were frequently accompanied with peculiar ceremonies. As far back as Abraham's time lifting the hand was practised in this connection, Gen 14:22; Deut 32:40, etc., as also placing the hand under the thigh of another. Gen 24:2; Gen 47:29.

In the O.T. the oath is taken as a ratification of agreements between the most diverse parties. The king or ruler takes an oath, solemnly pledging himself to perform a promisee. 2 Kgs 25:24; Matt 14:7; the subject to his sovereign, Eccl 8:2; the governor exacts the oath from the priests, Neh 5:12; the master from his servant. Gen 24:2; the patriarch from his people. Gen 50:25, etc.

Our Lord's prohibition of profane and careless swearing, Matt 5:34. has been 620 understood by some - as the Friends - to exclude all oaths whatever. No doubt, should the spirit of Christ completely pervade the world, the simple asseverations "Yea" and "Nay" would be all sufficient.

The most solemn oath that a Mohammedan can make is, "By the beard of Mohammed."

OBADI'AH (servant of Jehovah).

  1. A descendant of the house of David. 1 Chr 3:21.

  2. A chief of Issachar. 1 Chr 7:3.

  3. One of the six sons of Azel. 1 Chr 8:38; 1 Chr 9:44.

  4. A son of Shemaiah. 1 Chr 9:16.

  5. A Gadite who joined David in the wilderness. 1 Chr 12:9.

  6. A godly officer in the court of Ahab who concealed one hundred and fifty prophets in the persecution of Jezebel. 1 Kgs 18:3-16.

  7. A prince who taught the Law in Jehoshaphat's reign. 2 Chr 17:7.

  8. Father of Ishmaiah. 1 Chr 27:19.

  9. One of the overseers of the temple repairs in Josiah's reign. 2 Chr 34:12.

  10. A son of Jehiel. Ezr 8:9.

  11. One of those who sealed the covenant with Nehemiah. Neh 10:5.

  12. A porter in Jerusalem. Neh 12:25.

  13. The prophet whose prophecy is placed fourth among the minor prophecies. Absolutely nothing is known of his life. His prophecy was uttered subsequently to b.c. 588, as we draw from Ob 11, where the capture of Jerusalem and the captivity of Jacob are referred to as past events. The captivity of this verse is in all probability that by Nebuchadnezzar in b.c. 588.

Prophecy of, contains (1) a general arraignment of Edom for its pride and presumption, Ob 1-9. (2) A more particular statement of its offence as violence against Jacob, his brother, and neglect to help Jerusalem against the enemies that took her inhabitants captive, vs. 10-16. (3) An account of the prosperity of Zion when Jacob should return from his captivity and Esau be discomfited. vs. 17-21. It is doubtful whether the final verses have yet been fulfilled. There is a striking resemblance between the first nine verses of this prophecy and Jer 49:7-16. One prophet must have read the other's prophecy.

O'BAL (bare), a son of Joktan who gave his name to an Arab tribe. Gen 10:28. The name is written "Ebal" in 1 Chr 1:22.

O'BED (serving).

  1. The son of Ruth and Boaz, and father of Jesse. Ruth 4:17; 1 Chr 2:12. His name occurs in the genealogical tables of our Lord. Matt 1:5; Luke 3:32.

  2. A descendant of Sheshan by his Egyptian slave Jarha. 1 Chr 2:37.

  3. One of David's warriors. 1 Chr 11:47.

  4. One of the porters of the temple. 1 Chr 26:7.

  5. The father of Azariah. 2 Chr 23:1.

O'BED-E'DOM. (servant of Edom).

  1. A Gittite who lived in David's time, 1 Chr 13:13, and at whose house the ark was deposited, after the dreadful death of Uzzah. 2 Sam 6:6-10. The blessing which came on the house of Obed-edom for the ark's sake encouraged David to remove it to Jerusalem. 2 Sam 6:10-12.

  2. The temple-treasurer in the reign of Amaziah. 2 Chr 25:24.

O'BIL (camel-driver), the overseer of the camels in the reign of David. 1 Chr 27:30.

OBLA'TION. Lev 2:4. See Offering.

O'BOTH (bottles, water-skins), one of the stations of the Israelites east of Moab. Num 21:10; Num 33:43. It was the first encampment after the brazen serpent was set up, and before they reached Ije-abarim. It is perhaps near the Wady el-Ahsa, on the pilgrim-route between Damascus and Mecca. This was probably on the boundary between Edom and Moab, and extends north-westward to the Dead Sea.

OCCUPY (from the Latin occupare), literally "to lay hold of," then "to use," "employ," "trade with;" and, in a neuter sense, "to trade" is used in all these senses in the Bible.

OC'RAN (troubled, or troubler), the father of Pagiel, a prince of the tribe of Asher after the Exodus. Num 1:13; Num 2:27; Num 7:72; 1 Kgs 10:26.

O'DED (erecting).

  1. The father of the prophet Azariah, who flourished in Asa's reign. 2 Chr 15:1-8. In v. 8, Oded is called "prophet," where probably "the son" is meant.

2, A prophet at the time of Pekah's 621 invasion of Judah who prevailed upon the victorious army to let the captives free. 2 Chr 28:9-11.

OFFEND', OFFENSE'. These words are often wrongly translated in the A.V. (as Matt 5:29; Matt 18:6. The Greek verb strictly means "to make to stumble." And so the noun means "that which causeth to stumble," or leads to sin. It is in these senses that the eye is said "to offend" (better "causeth thee to stumble"), Matt 5:29 - that is, it may allure to sin. So, in Matt 18:7, "offenses" are causes of sin. Our Saviour is said to be a "rock of offense," Rom 9:33, because the humility of his life and death was an obstacle in the way of the Jews' accepting him, as they associated with their idea of the Messiah the external grandeur and pomp of the world. The "offense of the cross," Gal 5:11, is that in the doctrines of Christ or in the cross which is offensive to the natural man.

OFFERING, Gen 4:3, OBLA'TION. Lev 2:7. Offerings or sacrifice among the Jews formed the most essential part of religious worship. They indicated confession, self-dedication, expiation, and thanksgiving. The books of Leviticus and Numbers are our principal sources of information on the subject.

The offerings were either bloody or bloodless, and taken from the animal and vegetable creation. Of animals only tame ones were used, as oxen, goats, and sheep. To these must be added the dove. Lev 5:11. etc. From the vegetable kingdom, wine, flour, etc., were set apart. Human sacrifices or offerings were especially forbidden. Lev 18:21; Rev 20:2.

In the act of offering, the offerer, after bringing the victim to the altar, laid his hand on its head. Lev 1:4; Lev 4:4, etc. He then slew it. Lev 1:4, himself, or the priest for him. 2 Chr 29:24. The blood was received by the priest, who either sprinkled or poured it upon objects. The victim was then flayed and cut in pieces. Lev 1:6, 1 Kgs 15:8, some or all of which, according to the kind of offering, were burnt on the altar. In the case of some of the offerings the victim was lifted up or waved, in token of its presentation to Jehovah.

The first offerings of which record is made are those of Cain and Abel. Gen 4:3-8. Both the animal and the vegetable kingdoms contributed on this occasion. The second offering is that of Noah, Gen 8:20, after the Flood. The various offerings were the burnt-offerings, meat-offerings, peace-offerings, and the sin- and trespass-offerings.

The burnt-offering was to be a male without blemish, of the herd and of the flock, offered voluntarily at the door of the tabernacle, the hand of the offerer being upon the head of the victim. Lev 1:2-4.

The design of the burnt-offering was an atonement for sin. Lev 1:4; comp. Heb 10:1-3, Rev 1:11. It was presented every day, Ex 29:38-42, on the Sabbath, Num 28:9-10, and on the great day of atonement. Lev 16:3, and the three great festivals. Num 28:11-31; Num 29.

The meat-offering consisted of flour, or cakes, prepared with oil and frankincense. Lev 2:1; Lev 6:14-23. It was to be free from leaven and honey, but was to have salt. Lev 2:11, 2 Kgs 11:13. With this was connected the drink-offering, which was never used separately, but was an appendage of wine to some sacrifices. Ex 29:41. A meat-offering was presented every day with the burnt-offering. Ex 29:40-41.

The first-fruits, offered at Pentecost, Lev 23:17-20, and at the Passover, Lev 23:10-14, were called wave-offerings; those offered in harvest-time, Num 15:20-21, heave-offerings.

Peace-offerings were eucharistic in their nature, and were offered in thanksgiving or at a special dedication of something to the Lord. Lev 3; Lev 7:11-21. The animal as well as the vegetable kingdom contributed to this class of offerings.

The sin- and trespass-offerings were expiatory. It is difficult to determine exactly how they were distinguished. The first seem to have more especial reference to universal sinfulness, the second to specific acts of sin. Both alike testify to the consciousness of sin and the felt need of atonement. Sin-offerings were presented by the high priest for personal offences, for national sins, and on the great day of atonement, when he confessed the sins of the whole nation with his hand on the scapegoat's head, and the goat was driven off into the wilderness. Lev 16:1-34, etc. 622 These offerings all had a typical significance, especially the expiatory offerings. While they ever reminded the people of God's holiness and of their own sinfulness, which demands expiation, they also prefigured the atonement of Jesus Christ, on whom was laid the iniquity of us all, and "his own self bare our sins on the tree."

OF'FICER, the translation of several Hebrew and Greek words. The commonest in the O.T. is the term meaning "scribe who keeps registers and tables." Ex 5:14. The N.T. words relate to legal functionaries: (1) Bailiffs, Matt 5:25; John 7:32, Gen 41:45; Acts 5:22; (2) Those who register and collect the fines imposed by courts of justice. Luke 12:58.

OG (long-necked), a king of Bashan, of gigantic stature, Deut 3:11, who opposed the passage of the Israelites through his territories. Deut 3:1. He was defeated in a pitched battle in Edrei, and, together with his sons, was slain. Deut 1:4; Num 21:34. His sixty fenced and walled cities were distributed amongst the Reubenites, the Gadites, and the half-tribe of Manasseh. Deut 3:3-4; Num 32:23. He was a giant. Josh 13:12, and his long iron bedstead was regarded as a curiosity, and was preserved as a memorial of his huge stature. Deut 3:11.

O'HAD (power), one of the sons of Simeon. Gen 46:10; Ex 6:15.

O'HEL (tent), a son of Zerubbabel. 1 Chr 3:20.

OIL, amongst the Hebrews, was made from olive - berries and from spices. Ex 25:6. It was used -

  1. In the preparation of food, much as butter and lard are used to-day. 1 Kgs 17:12-15; Ex 29:2; Lev 2:4, etc.

  2. As a cosmetic for anointing the body, the beard, and the head. 2 Sam 14:2; Ps 23:5; Luke 7:46, etc.

  3. For illuminating purposes in lamps. Ex 25:6; Ex 27:20; Matt 25:3, etc.

  4. In worship. The first-fruits, Num 18:12, and the tithes were dedicated to the Lord. Neh 13:5. The meat-offerings were also dipped in oil. Lev 2:10; Am 7:16, etc.

  5. In the ritual of consecration of kings and high priests. 1 Sam 10:1; Lev 8:12, etc.

  6. For medicinal purposes. Mark 6:13; Luke 10:34; Isa 1:6; Jas 5:14.

  7. For anointing the dead. Matt 26:12; Luke 23:56.

The practice in the early Church of anointing the bodies of persons whose lives were despaired of was derived from Jas 5:14. The Roman Catholic Church has placed the practice among the sacraments, denominating it "extreme unction."

As an ordinary cosmetic, the use of oil is significant of joy and gladness, Ps 92:10, and the omission of it betokens sorrow. 2 Sam 14:2; Matt 6:17. See Olive.

OIL-PRESS. " The oil of Palestine is expressed in a rude way. The olive is subjected to pressure in a mill consisting of a great millstone with a hole in its centre; this stone is laid on one of its flat surfaces, and a beam of wood fastened upright in the axis. The upper surface of the stone is slightly depressed, except at its margin and around the central hole. Another millstone is set up on its edge in the depression of the upper surface of the lower stone. Through the axis of this stone passes a long beam, which is fastened at one end by a pin to the axis of the horizontal stone, and at the other to a whiffle tree, to which a horse or ox is geared when the mill is in operation. The upright stone is moved around the axis of the lower, and crushes the olives by its great weight. The oil which is expressed by this crushing mill is incorporated with the crushed mass, which is then transferred to baskets of flexible structure, 18 inches wide and 6 inches deep. A pile of these baskets, 8 feet or more in height, is raised within a hollow erect cylinder of stone, which is open in front by a slit, 4 inches in width, from top to bottom of the cylinder. Into the top of this cylinder passes a piston, which is connected with a lever, to which are attached heavy stones, and by means of the piston the baskets of olives are subjected to as much pressure as is necessary to extract the oil. The quality of oil thus made is quite inferior to that imported from Italy and France. It is largely used in making soap, and was formerly much more used for burning than now." - Dr. Post, of Beirut. (Contributed.) See Olive.

OIL TREE (tree of oil). Isa 41:19 623 In 1 Kgs 6:23, 1 Kgs 6:31-33 these words are rendered "olive tree," and represent the material of the cherubim, doors, and posts of Solomon's temple. They are translated "pine" in Neh 8:15. But the olive tree is also unmistakably mentioned in this verse. If the oil tree was not the olive tree, what was it? Tristram and others believe it to be the oleaster (Elaeagnus angustifolia). This shrub has no affinity to the olive, though resembling it in leaf and general appearance and yielding from its berries an inferior oil. It is found plentifully on the highlands of Palestine and about Jerusalem, thus meeting the direction of Neh 8:15, as the Balanites AEgyptiaca, a shrub of the Jordan valley, does not. Dr Tristram therefore suggests in one place (under "Oil Tree") that its "fine hard wood" was the wood of the cherubim, but in another place (under "Olive") states that material to have been olive wood (as the A.V. reads). The latter opinion has a strong probability in its favor, and it does not appear that the oleaster is more than a large shrub, though the author cited calls it, as compared with the olive, "a smaller tree." For the passage in Nehemiah there would then be no present explanation unless we believe, as is very possible, that the term "oil tree," in later times at least, was extended or restricted to the oleaster.

OINT'MENT. Isa 1:6; Matt 26:12. See Anoint and Oil.


OL'IVE. From ancient times this has been one of the most common fruit trees of Palestine. Deut 6:11. As the olive stands in the orchard it resembles the apple tree in shape, size, and mode of cultivation. Its leaves are narrow, dull above and silvery beneath, so that the resulting gray-green of these trees becomes beautiful by association. Hos 14:6. The white flowers, produced in the greatest profusion, are like those of the lilac, to which the tree is botanically allied; and, though millions are prematurely scattered by the breezes. Job 15:33, enough remain to load down the trees with fruit. This latter is like a plum in shape and color, being first green, then pale, and, when ripe, nearly black. Olives are some

Olive Branches and Olives.

times plucked in an unripe state and put into some pickle or other preserving liquid and exported. For the most part, however, they are valuable for the oil they produce, which is expressed from the fruit in various ways, and constitutes an important article of commerce and luxury. Job 24:11; Eze 27:17. The fruit is gathered by beating, Deut 24:20, or shaking the tree, Isa 17:6; and by Jewish law gleanings were to be left for the poor. A full-sized tree in its vigor 624 annually produces from ten to fifteen gallons of oil.

The olive seems to flourish best where it can get its roots into the crevices of the rock. Deut 32:13. It grows slowly, lives to an immense age, and still bears fruit when the trunk is but a hollow shell or strip of such a shell, illustrating Ps 92:14. The olive-branch is regarded universally as the symbol of peace, Gen 8:11, and plenty.

The olives from which oil is to be expressed must be gathered by the hands or softly shaken from the trees before they are fully ripe, in September or October. The best oil is that which comes from the fruit with very light pressure. This is sometimes called in Scripture "green oil," not because of its color - for it is pellucid - but because it is from unripe fruit. It is translated, in Ex 27:20, "pure oil-olive beaten," and was used for the golden candlestick. For the extraction of the first oil panniers or baskets are used, which are gently shaken. The second and third pressing produces inferior oil. The best is obtained from unripe fruit; the worst from that which is more than ripe, and which often is not gathered till winter. The oil of Egypt is worth little, because the olives are too fat. Hence the Hebrews sent gifts of oil to the Egyptian kings. Hos 12:1.

The olives are themselves eaten, and the oil is employed not only as salad, but as butter and fat are in our domestic economy, and the inferior qualities are used for making soap. It is observed by travellers that the natives of oil countries manifest more attachment to this than to any other article of food, and find nothing adequate to supply its place. For other uses see Oil.

A press was often used for the extraction

Oil-Press and Olive Tree.

of the oil, consisting of two reservoirs, usually 8 feet square and 4 feet deep, situated one above the other and hewn out of the rock. Job 29:6. The berries, being thrown into the upper one, were trodden out with the feet. Mic 6:15. Olive-wood, which is close-grained, of a dark amber color, and beautifully veined, was probably used in the temple. 1 Kgs 6:23, 1 Kgs 6:31-33. See Oil Tree. Ordinarily, at present, there are no fences about olives, but each tree has its one or more owners, and is inherited, bought, or sold separately, while the ground belongs to the village. This tree, like the apple, requires grafting, for seedlings produce but scanty, small, and poor fruit. 625 Olive, Wild. Rom 11:17-24 does not teach that a wild twig grafted upon a good stock will produce good fruit, for this is not the fact. Paul refers rather to the adoption of the Gentiles among God's people as a process "contrary to nature," but accomplished by grace.

OLIVES, and OLIVET, MOUNT OF, a noted mountain or range of hills east of Jerusalem.

Names and Scripture History. - The mountain derives its name from the olive trees which formerly abounded on its sides, some of which are still found thereon. It is called "Olivet'" and "Mount of Olives" in the O.T., 2 Sam 15:30; Zech 14:4, and is also alluded to as the "mount," Neh 8:15, the mount facing Jerusalem, 1 Kgs 11:7, the "mountain which is on the east side of the city," Eze 11:23; and the "mount of corruption " probably refers to a portion of Olivet. 2 Kgs 23:13. It is also called, in the N.T., "Mount of Olives" and "Olivet," and was a scene of several of the most interesting events in the life of our Lord. Matt 21:1; 1 Sam 24:3; Acts 26:30; Mark 11:1; Gen 13:3; Mark 14:26; Luke 19:29, 2 Kgs 18:37; Josh 21:37; Luke 22:39; John 8:1; Acts 1:12. The modern Arabic name is sometimes Jebel ez-Zeitun, or "mount of olives," but more usually it is Jebel et-Turs, or "mount of the summit." The mountain is first mentioned in connection with David's flight from Jerusalem to escape from Absalom. 2 Sam 15:30, 2 Sam 15:32; 2 Sam 16:1. Upon it Solomon built high places for the gods of his numerous wives, but these idolatrous places were destroyed by King Josiah. 1 Kgs 11:7; 2 Kgs 23:13-14. When the captive Jews celebrated the feast of tabernacles, the olive, pine, myrtle, and palm branches used in building their booths were brought from this mountain. Neh 8:15.

The greatest interest, however, in this mountain is in connection with the closing scenes of our Saviour's ministry. At Bethany, on the eastern slope of the mountain, lived Mary, Martha, and Lazarus, and here he performed his last and greatest miracle; from Olivet he made his triumphal entry into Jerusalem; upon it he spent the nights during the week of his passion; from its slopes he looked down upon .Jerusalem and wept over the ungrateful city as he foretold its fearful doom; on the night of his betrayal he retired to a garden at its foot, and spent those hours of prayer and agony; and after his resurrection, in the presence of his disciples, he ascended from Olivet to heaven to sit on the right hand of the Father in his glory. John 11:1; Neh 12:1; Matt 21:1; Mark 11:1; Luke 19:29-38; Josh 21:37; Matt 26:36; Mark 14:32; Luke 22:39; Luke 24:50; Acts 1:12.

Physical Features. - Olivet, or the Mount of Olives, is not a single peak, but a ridge having not less than four separate summits. Osborne describes six prominent heights in the Olivet range, but he includes Scopus, on the north, and the hill of "Evil Counsel," on the extreme south, of the ridge. The Olivet range extends north without any marked depression to the portion called Scopus, and the general elevation of the ridge is a little less than 3000 feet above the sea-level. It lies directly east of Jerusalem, and is separated from the city by the valley of the Kedron. The four chief peaks south of Scopus are:(1) The northern summit, called Viri Galilaei, from a tradition that the angels stood upon it when they spoke to the disciples. Acts 1:11. It is about half a mile north-east from the city, and is 2682 feet above the sea. (2) The central summit, or the "Mount of Ascension," 2665 feet in height, is situated directly east of the temple-area, and is the Mount of Olives proper. Three paths lead to this summit - one by a nearly direct ascent, another winding around the southern shoulder, and a third path leading around the northern shoulder. On the top of this peak is a chapel built upon the site of a church erected by Helena, the mother of Constantine, since tradition points out this spot as the place of the ascension of Christ. The monks point out even the footprint made by the ascending Lord, and the spot, a little south of this, where Christ is said to have taught the disciples the model, or Lord's, prayer. The true place of the ascension, however, was beyond the summit of Olivet, and near Bethany. Luke 24:50. (3) The third summit, about 600 yards south-west of the former, and three-fourths of a mile from Bethany, is called "the Prophets," from a curious catacomb called the "Prophets' Tombs" on its side. (4) The fourth summit,


Olivet from the West. 627 about 1000 yards from No. 3, is the "Mount of Offence," so called from the idol-worship which Solomon established there. None of the depressions which separate these summits are very deep; some are to be regarded as quite slight. It is evident that in ancient times this mountain-ridge was covered with olives, myrtles, figs, cypresses, and some species of the terebinth or oak, and also abounded in flowers. "The olives and olive-yards," says Stanley, "from which it derived its name must in earlier times have clothed it far more completely than at present, where it is only in the deeper and more secluded slopes leading up to the northernmost summit that these venerable trees spread into anything like a forest. And in those times, as we see from the name of Bethany ('house of dates'), and from the allusions after the Captivity and in the gospel history, myrtle-groves, pines, and palm trees - all of which have now disappeared - must have made it a constant resort for pleasure and seclusion. Two gigantic cedars, probably amongst the very few in Palestine, stood near its summit, under which were four shops where pigeons were sold for purification. The olive and fig alone now remain - the olive still in more or less abundance, the fig here and there on the roadside, but both enough to justify the Mussulmans' belief that in the oath in the Koran, 'By the olive and the fig,' the Almighty swears by his favorite city of Jerusalem, with this adjacent mountain." - Sinai and Palestine, p. 184.

As our Lord must frequently have looked over the city and the surrounding country from the top of this mount, it will be interesting to describe the scene now presented to the eye of the traveller from this spot. The view from the top of the minaret upon the central summit, or Mount of Ascension, is extensive and magnificent. "Beyond the valley of the Kedron extends the spacious plateau of the Haram esh-Sherif, where the Dome of the Rock and the Aksa mosque present a particularly imposing appearance. The spectator should observe the direction taken by the temple-hill, the higher site of the ancient Bezetha, to the north of the temple, and the hollow of the Tyropoeon, which is plainly distinguishable, though now filled with rubbish, between the temple-hill and the upper part of the town. The dome-covered roofs of the houses form a very peculiar characteristic of the town. Toward the north, beyond the olive-grove outside the Damascus Gate, is seen the upper (western) course of the valley of the Kedron, decked with rich verdure in spring, beyond which rises the Scopus. The view toward the east is striking. Here, for the first time, we perceive that extraordinary and unique depression of the earth's surface which few travellers thoroughly realize. The blue waters of the Dead Sea, lying at the foot of the mountains which bound the eastern horizon, and apparently not many hundred feet below us, are really no less than 3900 feet below our present standpoint. The clearness of the atmosphere, too, is so deceptive that the mysterious lake seems quite near, though it can only be reached after a seven hours' ride over barren, uninhabited ranges of hills. The blue mountains which rise beyond the deep chasm, reaching the same height as the Mount of Olives, once belonged to the tribe of Reuben, and it is among these that Mount Nebo must be sought. To the extreme south of that range a small eminence, crowned by the village of Kerak, is visible in clear weather. On the eastern margin of the Dead Sea are seen two wide openings:that to the south is the valley of the river Arnon, and that to the north the valley of the Zerka. Farther north rises the Jehel Jilad, once the possession of the tribe of Gad. Nearer to us lies the valley of Jordan, the course of the river being indicated by a green line on a whitish ground. Toward the south-east we see the course of the valley of the Kedron, or 'Valley of Fire,' and on a hill-plateau, to the left, the village of Abu Dis. Bethany is not visible. Quite near us rises the 'Mountain of Offence:' beyond the Kedron that of 'Evil Counsel,' and farther distant, to the south, is the summit of the 'Frank Mountain,' or 'Hill of Paradise,' with the heights of Bethlehem and Tekoah; to the south-west, on the fringe of hills which bounds the plain of Kephaim on the south, lies the monastery of Mar Elyas, past which winds the road to Bethlehem. That town itself is concealed from view, but the large village of Bet Jala and several villages to the south of Jerusalem, such 628 as Beit Sufafa and Esh-Sherafat, are distinctly visible." - Baedeker's Palestine and Syria, p. 219.

The slopes of Olivet are terraced and cultivated, but the vegetation is not luxuriant. The principal trees now are the olive, fig, and carob, with here and there a few apricot, almond, terebinth, and hawthorn. At the western base of the mountain is Silwan, a miserable little village. Jewish tradition declares that the shekinah, or divine presence, after retiring from Jerusalem, dwelt three years and a half on Olivet, to see whether the Jews would repent, but when they would not, retired to his own place. See Jerusalem and Gethsemane.

OL'IVE-YARD, a grove of olives, tended for the sake of the fruit. Ex 23:11, etc.

OLYM'PAS, a Christian at Rome. Rom 16:15.

O'MAR (eloquent?), a grandson of Esau. Gen 36:11, 2 Sam 20:15; 1 Chr 1:36.

O'MEGA. Rev 1:8. See Alpha.

O'MER. Ex 16:36. See Measures.

OM'RI (servant of Jehovah).

  1. An officer in the army of Israel. 1 Kgs 16:16. He was engaged in the siege of Gibbethon (which see) when he received intelligence that Zimri, another officer of the army, had assassinated the king and usurped the throne. The army, by general acclamation, made Omri king, and, raising the siege of Gibbethon, they forthwith marched to Tirzah, where Zimri resided, and captured it. Zimri set fire to the house he occupied, and was consumed. The Israelites were then divided into two parties; but after a short struggle Omri prevailed and took the throne, which he disgraced through a reign of twelve years. Omri, in the sixth year of his reign, built Samaria, which thereafter became the capital of the ten tribes. The prophet Micah, Mic 6:16, speaks of the "statutes of Omri," and denounces them. They were probably of an idolatrous character.

  2. A descendant of Benjamin 1 Chr 7:8.

  3. A descendant of Judah. 1 Chr 9:4.

  4. Chief of the tribe of Issachar in the reign of David. 1 Chr 27:18.

ON (strength), a grandson of Reuben who took part with Korah, Dathan, and Abiram in their rebellion. Num 16:1. As his name is not subsequently mentioned, it has been conjectured that he repented and withdrew.

ON (sun, light), a celebrated city of Lower Egypt, Gen 41:45, 1 Chr 6:50; called Bethshemesh, or "house of the sun," Jer 43:13, and known to the Greeks as Heliopolis, or "city of the sun." Eze 30:17, margin. Some suppose it to be referred to as the "city of destruction" in Isa 19:18-18. The Arabs call it, Ain Shems, or the "fountain of the sun." On was situated upon the Pelusiac branch of the Nile, about 20 miles northeast of ancient Memphis, and 6 miles north from Cairo.

History. - On was one of the oldest cities in the world. Its origin and founder are unknown, but it has an obelisk which has been standing about 4000 years. It has been considered the Rome and the Athens of ancient Egypt, the centre of its religion and learning. In it stood the great temple of Ra, with one exception the most famous ancient shrine in Egypt. Ra, next to Ptah, was the greatest Egyptian deity, bearing seventy-five different forms, and regarded as a king of gods and men, and as the sun who illumines the world with the light of his eyes, and is the awakener of life. Every Pharaoh was also regarded as a human embodiment of Ra, and hence one of his titles was "Lord of Heliopolis." To the chief shrine of the god Ra each king presented special offerings, making it one of the richest temples of ancient times. The immense wealth of this shrine is mentioned in various papyri, particularly the "Harris Papyrus," in London, which gives a list of the gifts of Rameses III. Its companies of priests and attendants are reputed to have numbered over 12,000. The legend of the wonder-bird Phoenix, early used to illustrate the doctrine of the resurrection, arose here; to this city Joseph, delivered from prison, came with royal honors to marry the daughter of Potipherah, ("dedicated to Ra"). Josephus reports that On was the home of Jacob on his arrival in Egypt. In its grandeur it was the resort of men of learning from all countries. In its schools and universities Moses, according to Manetho, was instructed in all the learning of the Egyptians, and hither 629 came Plato, Eudoxus, and the wisest of the Greeks to be initiated into the majestic lore of its priests. From the teachers of its ancient schools Herodotus gained his knowledge of the country and its history. In the time of Strabo, b.c. 60, this famous seat of learning had ceased to exist, though he was shown the houses of the priests and the dwelling occupied by Plato. He states that its teachers were admirably imbued with the knowledge of heavenly things, and that they could be persuaded only by patience and politeness to communicate some of their doctrines, which they concealed from barbarians. Josephus speaks of a temple built at Heliopolis by order of Ptolemy Philometor for the Jews when Onias was high priest, and which lasted for

Obelisk at On, or Heliopolis.

220 years, when it was destroyed by Vespasian. The city, however, is said to have been devastated by Cambyses at an earlier date.

Present Condition. - The site of this once famous city is now marked with a few ruins of massive walls, fragments of sphinxes, a noted obelisk of red granite of Sycne (one of the two which stood before the temple of the Sun), and some low mounds enclosing a space about three-quarters of a mile long by half a mile wide. The obelisk, rising amid the desolation, is 66 feet high, and, except a small one found by Lepsius in Memphis, is the oldest one yet discovered, having been erected by Usertesen, the second king of the twelfth dynasty. Each of the four sides is covered with hieroglyphics, rendered illegible on two sides by the mud-cells of bees. The inscriptions are, however, the same on each of its faces, and simply record when, why, and by whom it was erected. It is partly buried in the sand. "There," says Schaff, "it has been standing for nearly 4000 years, and there it still stands in solitary grandeur and unbroken silence. Had it a mouth to speak, it could tell of the visit of Abraham and Sarah, of the wisdom and purity of Joseph, the inquisitiveness of Herodotus, the sublime speculations of Plato, the mysteries of Egyptian learning and idolatry, the rise and fall of ancient empires." It appears to the traveller as the only important survivor of the avenues of spinxes, the temples, palaces, colleges, and obelisks beheld or described by the Grecian historians. Formerly the two obelisks of Alexandria called the "Needles of Cleopatra" or the "Obelisks of Pharaoh" stood at On, but they were removed in the reign of Tiberius, and one of them now stands on the bank of the Thames, in London (since 1879); the other has been presented to the city of New York, whither it was transported in 1880, and now stands in the Central Park.

Tradition indicates On as the place to which Joseph and Mary and the child Jesus came to escape from the cruelty of Herod, and a sycamore tree is shown, under which they are reputed to have rested in their flight.

O'NAM (strong).

  1. One of the sons of Shobal. Gen 36:23; 1 Chr 1:40.

  2. A son of Jerahmeel. 1 Chr 2:26, 1 Chr 2:28.

O'NAN (strong), the second son of Judah, Gen 38:4; 1 Chr 2:3, who refused to raise up seed to his elder brother after his death. Gen 38:8-9. 630 He died before the migration of Jacob's family to Egypt. Gen 46:12; Num 26:19.

ONES'IMUS (useful), a slave of Philemon in whose behalf Paul wrote the Epistle to Philemon. Col 4:9. He seems to have fled from his master, Phile 15, but returned to him a Christian. His conversion was brought about through Paul at Rome. Phile 10. Tradition says he was afterward made bishop of Beraea, in Macedonia.

ONESIPH'ORUS (profit-bringing), a primitive Christian who ministered to the wants of Paul at Ephesus, and afterward sought him out at Rome and openly sympathized with him. 2 Tim 1:16-18, 2 Tim 4:19.

ON'ION, a well-known garden vegetable which grew in great perfection in Egypt, and was longed for by the Israelites. Num 11:5. The onions of Egypt are of large size and exquisite flavor, "differing from the onions of our country as much as a bad turnip differs in palatableness from a good apple."

O'NO (strong), a town in Benjamin, and reoccupied after the Captivity. 1 Chr 8:12; Ezr 2:33; Neh 7:37. A plain and a valley - the two perhaps identical - were connected with it. Neh 6:2; Neh 11:35; 1 Chr 4:14. As it is named with Lod, Van de Velde, Porter, Baedeker, and others locate it at Kefr 'Ana, 5 miles north of Lydda (Lod).

ON'YCHA, an ingredient of the sacred incense which was prepared under divine direction. Ex 30:34. It was probably the horny lid or door of a univalve shell (Strombus) found in the Red Sea. When burnt this "operculum " emits a strong pungent odor.

O'NYX, one kind of chalcedony; a precious stone, Ex 25:7; Eze 28:13, exhibiting two or more colors disposed in parallel bands or layers. The Hebrew word shoham is uniformly so translated in the Bible. Opinion is divided as to the exact meaning of the term. Josephus says the onyx is meant. It was found in the land of Havilah, Gen 2:12, and was evidently of high value, as it is mentioned among precious stones and metals. Job 28:16; Eze 28:13. It adorned the breastplate of the high priest and the two shoulders of his ephod.Ex 28:9-12, Ruth 4:20. David also collected onyx-stones for the adornment of the temple. 1 Chr 29:2.

O'PHEL (hill, swelling), a hill of ancient Jerusalem. More accurately, it was the southern extremity of the hill on which the temple stood, and from whence the hill sunk gradually toward the surrounding valleys. It was enclosed and fortified by a wall, 2 Chr 27:3; 2 Chr 33:14; Neh 3:26-27; Jer 11:21, but it is now outside the walls of the city. The term has usually been understood to apply to the entire hill. Warren, however, suggests that Ophel was originally the designation of the palace which Solomon built, a building which in later reigns would command the Kedron valley by a wall at least 150 feet in height, increased to 200 feet by the building of the royal cloisters. The excavations of Warren exposed a wall 70 feet in height, which he supposes to have been Manasseh's, and in conjunction with it is a great tower built of drafted stones - perhaps that "which lieth without." Upward of 50 shafts were sunk about Ophel in search of the wall, and a line of wall was found to extend as far as 700 feet from the first tower in a south-easterly direction along the ridge of Ophel. There it ends abruptly. About 200 feet southward in the same line some massive walls were uncovered. On the eastern side of Ophel is the Fount of the Virgin, and below is the pool of Siloam. See Jerusalem.

O'PHIR (fruitful?), one of the sons of Joktan. Gen 10:29; 1 Chr 1:23.

O'PHIR, the celebrated gold-region to which the ships of Solomon and Hiram sailed from a port on the Red Sea, and from whence they returned bearing gold, silver, precious stones, and algum-tree wood; and they also brought ivory, apes, and peacocks, though it is not said that these latter came originally from Ophir. 1 Kgs 9:28; 1 Kgs 10:11, 1 Kgs 10:22. The ships of Jehoshaphat, built to make a similar voyage, were wrecked at Eziongeber. 1 Kgs 22:48. The abundance and fineness of the gold of Ophir were proverbial. Job 22:24; Acts 28:16; Ps 45:9; Isa 13:12; 1 Chr 29:4; Tobit 13:17; Ecclus. 7:18.

The precise situation of Ophir is an unsettled question in scriptural geography. Three chief locations have been suggested: (1) Arabia; (2) India; (3) Eastern Africa. 631 The arguments in favor of each location may be briefly stated as follows:

  1. Arabia. - The reason for placing Ophir in Arabia is that this land of gold was probably named after Ophir, a son of Joktan, and a descendant of Shem, whose dwelling was between Mesha and Sephar, a mount of the east. Gen 10:29-30. Now, we find that Ptolemy, in his description of Arabia Felix, speaks of a town called Sapphara or Saphar, which resembles the Hebrew Sephar. This would place Ophir in Southern Arabia, upon the border of the Indian Ocean. Ritter objects to this location because Arabia does not now produce gold. There is abundant evidence, however, to show that in ancient times gold was obtained in Arabia. Solomon received gold brought by the queen of Sheba, and Tyrian merchants traded in Arabian gold. 1 Kgs 10:15; 2 Chr 9:14; Eze 27:22. Diodorus and Pliny also testify that Arabia formerly abounded in gold, as well as in precious stones and sweet-smelling wood like the algum trees.

  2. India. - The argument of Ritter, Ewald, and Max Muller in favor of locating Ophir in India is that some of the articles brought in the ships of Solomon are productions peculiar to India. Max Muller has also made an ingenious linguistic argument in favor of this theory, based upon the fact that the names of some of these articles are foreign words in Hebrew, and that they belong especially to the Sanscrit, the parent language of Eastern India. Neither of these considerations is of sufficient weight to decide the question.

  3. Eastern Africa. - The idea that Ophir was identical with Sofala, on the Mozambique coast of Africa, appears to have been first suggested by Portuguese travellers in the sixteenth century. Some French scholars have approved of the theory, but it has not met with general favor.

It is safe to conclude from the above statements that when the Hebrew writers spoke of going to Ophir they referred to the Joktanite Ophir of the Arabian coast, though it is not improbable that the voyage of Solomon's ships extended to India.

OPH'NI (mouldy), a town in Benjamin. Josh 18:24. It was probably identical with (Jophna of Josephus and with the modern village of Jufna, or Jifna, about 2 or 3 miles north-west of Bethel. It was an important town in the time of Vespasian.

OPH'RAH (female fawn), the son of Meonothai. 1 Chr 4:14.

OPH'RAH (female fawn), the name of at least two places in Scripture.

  1. A town in Benjamin toward which an invading company of Philistines went. Josh 18:23; 1 Sam 13:17. Some suppose it is identical with Ephrain or Ephron, 2 Chr 13:19. and with the city of Ephraim, to which our Lord retired after raising Lazarus. John 11:54, Eusebius and Jerome located it about 5 Roman miles east of Bethel. This would identify it with the modern village et Taiyiheh.

  2. Ophrah of the Abi-ezerite. Jud 6:11, Jud 6:24. This was the place where Gideon saw the angel, erected an altar, and where he was buried. Jud 8:27, Jud 1:32. Here Abimelech slew seventy of his kindred, and the town appears to have been near Shechem, in the territory of Manasseh. Jud 9:1, Jud 9:5-6, 2 Sam 20:15, Conder proposes to identify it with the modern village of Ferata, near Shechem.

OR'ACLE. This term is in the O.T. in every case but one applied to the most holy place in the temple, whence God declared his will to ancient Israel. 1 Kgs 6:5, 1 Kgs 6:19-23; 1 Kgs 8:6. But in 2 Sam 16:23 it is used in the ordinary sense. In the N.T. it is in the plural, and is applied to the Scriptures, which contain the will of God. Rom 3:2; Heb 5:12; 1 Pet 4:11. Once they are called "living" because of their quickening effects. Acts 7:38.

By the oracles, in the heathen world, were understood the shrines where utterances concerning the future were given and the utterance itself. The Greeks had many such oracles, of which the most famous was the oracle of Delphi. The priestess, sitting on a tripod over a chasm from which an intoxicating vapor was said to ascend, uttered incoherent words, which were then interpreted by a prophet. These oracles at one time stood in high repute and were consulted by kings. They did not, however, withstand very long the corruptive power of money and bribery.


OR'ATOR, or ADVOCATE, because acquainted with Roman law. See Tertullus.

OR'DINANCES. The term, as used by the sacred writers, designates laws and commandments of God, Ex 18:20, or of civil rulers, 1 Pet 2:13, and sometimes religious ceremonies. Heb 9:1, 1 Kgs 16:10. In one passage, 1 Cor 11:2, the word is a translation for the Greek word paradonis, which in twelve other passages of the N.T. is more correctly translated "tradition."

O'REB (raven), a prince of Midian defeated and driven back by Gideon. Jud 7:25. His fate is alluded to in Ps 83:11 and Isa 10:26.

O'REB (raven). The "rock of Oreb" was named after Oreb, one of the princes of Midian, whom the men of Ephraim slew. Jud 7:25; Isa 10:26. Reland and others would locate Oreb east of the Jordan and in the neighborhood of Bethshean, at a place called Orbo. It appears from Jud 8:4 that Gideon crossed the river in pursuit of the kings of Midian. Hence, Condor formerly suggested that the Midianite leaders were executed on the west side of the Jordan and their heads carried to Gideon, on the other side, and that the rock Oreb was at Ash el-Ghorah. He adds: "The sharp peak overlooking the broad plain north of Jericho would indeed form a natural place for a public execution, which would be visible to the whole multitude beneath." - Palestine Quarterly, July, 1874, p. 184. In the Handbook of the Bible, however, he appears to have abandoned this identification, which leaves that of Reland as the only probable location of Oreb suggested.

O'REN (pine tree), a son of Jerahmeel. 1 Chr 2:25.

OR'GAN. Gen 4:21. The "organ," as it is called, is thought to have been what the ancient Greeks called the "pipe of Pan." It consisted of seven or more reeds of unequal length. These are still used by the shepherds of the East, and in skilful hands produce quite tolerable music.

ORI'ON, a constellation of about eighty stars, south of Taurus, and, partly, of the equator. Job 9:9. The Arabs called it the "Giant," meaning thereby Nimrod. The constellation is also mentioned in Job 38:31 and Am 5:8.

OR'NAMENTS. The fondness which the human race in general, and Oriental nations in particular, have for personal ornaments was shared in by the ancient Hebrews. The first mention of jewelry is in Gen 24:22, where Abraham's servant presented Rebekah with earrings and bracelets. The weakness of Hebrew women for jewelry is well brought out, Jer 2:32: "Can a maid forget her ornaments?" The ornaments worn by the Hebrews consisted of bracelets, necklaces, earrings, noserings, Eze 16:11-12, etc. Isaiah, Isa 3:16-25, gives a graphic picture of the fashionable woman of his day and her ornaments. The apostles exhort the women of their day to adorn themselves with good works, 1 Tim 2:10, and with a meek and quiet spirit rather than with the wearing of gold. 1 Pet 3:4.

OR'NAN. 1 Chr 21:15. See Araunah.

OR'PAH (fawn, or mane), the daughter-in-law of Naomi, who with Ruth accompanied her part of the way on the road to Bethlehem. Her affection, however was not so strong as Ruth's, and, kissing Naomi, she returned to her people and her gods. Ruth 1:4, 2 Kgs 22:14.

OR'PHANS. Special privileges were accorded to them by the Mosaic Law, as well as to the widow and stranger, Deut 14:21, and special kindness and leniency enjoined toward them. Deut 24:17. Job adduced it as one of his merits that he had helped the fatherless. Job 29:12, etc. James, Jas 1:27, classes the visitation of orphans amongst the acts of pure and undefiled religion. The word, John 14:18 translated "comfortless" is "orphans" in the Greek.

O'SEE, the Greek form of writing "Hosea." Rom 9:25.

OSHE'A (deliverance), the original name of Joshua. Num 13:16.

OS'PRAY, mentioned with the ossifrage as an unclean bird. Lev 11:13; Deut 14:12. If not a generic term for eagles, perhaps the short-toed eagle (Circaetus gallicus), by far the most abundant of the Palestine species.

OS'SIFRAGE (Heb. the breaker). The original word well suits the remarkable habits of the lammergeier, or bearded vulture, known also among the Alps, and one of the most formidable birds of its tribe. It is mentioned with the ospray, as above. The propriety of 633 the name "ossi-frage" - i.e., "bone-breaker" - is seen from the following description: "Marrow- bones are the dainties he (the lammergeyer) loves the best; and when the other vultures have picked the flesh off any animal, he comes in at the end of the feast and swallows the bones, or breaks them and swallows

Ossifrage or Lammergeier (Gypaetus barbatus).

the pieces if he cannot get the marrow out otherwise. The bones he cracks by taking them to a great height and letting them fall upon a stone. This is probably the bird that dropped a tortoise on the bald head of poor old AEschylus. Not, however, that he restricts himself, or the huge black infant that he and his mate are bringing up in one of the many holes with which the limestone precipice abounds, to marrow, turtle, bones, and similar delicacies; neither lamb, hare, nor kid comes amiss to him, though, his power of claw and beak being feeble for so large a bird, he cannot tear his meat like other eagles. To make amends for this, his powers of deglutition are enormous." - N. H. Simpson.

OS'TRICH, a remarkable bird of the hot regions of Africa and Arabia, often attaining the height of 7 feet, of which the head and neck make 3. It is also 7 feet from the head to the end of the tail when the neck is stretched horizontally on a line with the body. The ostrich loves solitary and desolate places, and is the bird intended in Job 30:29; Isa 13:21; Isa 34:13; Jer 50:39; Mic 1:8 (though called the owl), and its cry is piercing and mournful.

The plumage of the ostrich is white and black. Its weight (which is often 75 or 80 pounds) and the construction of its body prevent its flying. The habits of this bird are described with scientific accuracy in Job 39:13-18. Its timidity is such that the least noise frightens it from the nest, which is often made on the ground and in the most exposed places; and from the same cause the young of the ostrich are often suddenly abandoned. Hence she seems to be regarded as lacking the usual share of instinct or natural affection. Lam 4:3. A modern traveller tells us that the Arabs meet sometimes with whole nests of these eggs (containing from thirty to fifty in number), 5 inches in diameter, and weighing several pounds; some of them are sweet and good, others are addled and corrupted; others, again, have their young ones of different growth, according to the time, it may be presumed, since they have been forsaken of the dam. They often meet with a few of the little ones no bigger than well-grown pullets, half starved, straggling and moaning about like so many distressed orphans for their mother. In this manner the ostrich may be said to be "hardened against her young ones, as though they were not hers; her labor," in hatching and attending them, being "vain, without fear" or the least concern of what becomes of them afterward.

The most remarkable characteristic of the ostrich is the rapidity with which it runs, and which the fleetest horse cannot equal. The surprising swiftness of this bird is expressly mentioned by Xenophon. Speaking of the desert of Arabia, he states that ostriches are frequently seen there; that none could take them, the horsemen who pursue them soon giving it over, for they escaped far away, making use both of



their feet to run and of their wings, when expanded, as a sail to waft them along. This representation is confirmed by the writer of A Voyage to Senegal, who says, "She sets off at a hard gallop, but, after being excited a little, she expands her wings as if to catch the wind and abandons herself to a speed so great that she seems not to touch the ground. I am persuaded," continues the writer, "she would leave far behind the swiftest English courser." See Owl, Peacock.

OTH'NI (lion of Jehovah), son of Shemaiah, and a "mighty man of valor," 1 Chr 26:7.

OTH'NIEL, the son of Kenaz, Jud 1:13, who displayed his valor in seizing the city of Debir, or Kirjath-sepher, for which exploit he was rewarded by the gift of the daughter of his uncle Caleb in marriage. Josh 15:17. Afterward he was made the instrument of delivering the Israelites from the oppression of the king of Mesopotamia. Judg 3:8-9.

OU'CHES were sockets in which precious stones were set. Ex 39:6.

OUTLAND'ISH. The women who "caused Solomon to sin" are so called. Neh 13:26. The term means "foreign."

OVENS. Ex 8:3. In the Eastern cities the ovens at the present day are not materially different from our own. The more common way of constructing them in the country, however, is to take a jar or pot of a cylindrical shape, and, after having partly filled it with pebbles, to apply heat and use it for baking. The dough is plastered upon the outside, and, when baked (as it is almost instantly) comes off in thin cakes. All Eastern bread is of this thin sort. The bread made in this way is clean and white. 635 The Bedouin Arabs use three or four different ovens, the description of which may throw some light upon the oven of the Bible.

  1. The sand oven. - This is nothing more than the sand of the earth, upon which a fire is made until it is supposed to be sufficiently heated. The fuel and fire are then cleared away, and the dough is laid on the hot sand in flat pieces about the thickness of a plate. Isa 44:15, Acts 1:19. These are the "ash-cakes." Gen 18:6; 1 Kgs 17:13; 1 Kgs 19:6. See Cake.

  2. The earth oven is a round hole in the earth. Stones are first put into this, and a fire is kindled upon them. When the stones have become thoroughly hot, the fire is removed and the dough spread in thin flakes upon the heated stones, and turned as often as may be necessary. The ovens used in Persia are about 2 1/2 feet wide and not less than 5 or 6 feet deep. They resemble pits or wells, and sheep are hung lengthwise in them and cooked whole. These may lie what are rendered in our version "ranges for pots." Lev 11:35.

  3. Portable oven. - This is an earthen vessel without a bottom, about 3 feet high, smeared outside and inside with clay and placed upon a frame or support. Fire is made within it or below it. When the sides are sufficiently heated thin patches of dough are spread on the inside, and the top is covered without removing the fire, as in the other cases, and the bread is quickly baked. To this we may refer the phrase "baken in the oven." Lev 2:4.

Convex plates of iron, pans or plates, flat stones, etc., are often used for baking. See Bake, Bread.

OVERSEERS. Acts 20:28. This term denotes the pastor of a congregation of Christians, and is identical with presbyter or elder. Comp. v. 2 Sam 21:17. The same Greek word is elsewhere translated "bishop." See Bishop.

OWL. In Deut 14:16-17; Isa 34:11, 2 Sam 20:15; Ps 102:6 this word doubtless denotes some one or other of the five species of owl common in Egypt and Syria. The Hebrew word translated

Eagle Owl (Bubo Maximus. After Houghton.)

"owl" in eight other cases means the ostrich, as is often indicated in the margin. Some of these birds we know 636 are very abundant in Palestine, especially among ruins, and their doleful hooting as they seek their prey by night intensities the present desolation of these former habitations of pride and glory. The prophecies of Isa 34 find a fulfilment in modern Petra - ancient Idumaea - as described by Irby and Mangles: "The screaming of eagles, hawks, and owls, which were soaring above our heads in considerable numbers, seemingly annoyed at any one approaching their lonely habitation, added much to the singularity of the scene." See Night-hawk, Ostrich.

OX, a well-known domestic animal, clean by the Levitical Law, strong and patient of labor, of great use in agricultural pursuits, and one of the most valuable possessions of the Jewish husbandman. Gen 24:35; Gen 30:43; 1 Sam 11:7; Job 1:3. Oxen were used for ploughing, Deut 22:10; 1 Kgs 19:19; Job 1:14; Prov 14:4; Isa 30:24; for drawing. Num 7:3, Num 3:7-8; for threshing or treading out grain, Deut 25:4; 1 Cor 9:9; for beasts of burden, 1 Chr 12:40; for sacrifice, Gen 15:9; 1 Kgs 8:63; 2 Chr 29:33; to produce milk and butter, Deut 32:14; Isa 7:22; 2 Sam 17:29; and their flesh as food. 1 Kgs 19:21; 1 Chr 12:39-40; Matt 22:4. The full-grown ox was,however, rarely slaughtered either for food or sacrifice, being esteemed too valuable for any ordinary use of this kind. The young animal was taken instead. Of the herds of Moab in our day Tristram says: "Unlike the sheep, the cattle do not find their way across Jordan to the markets of Jerusalem or Nablous. Beef is a costly luxury, for the bullocks are as valuable for the plough as the heifers are for milch-kine." The cattle of the Jews were probably broken to service when three years old. Isa 15:5; Jer 48:34.

The oxen of ancient Egypt are shown by the monuments to have been large and handsome creatures, and it is likely that those of Palestine were then similar, though they have now much deteriorated, in size at least. As is shown by the above synopsis, oxen were used in general as horses are now.

East of the Jordan vast herds of cattle grazed through the entire year, being driven to new pastures as old ones were exhausted. This was sometimes possible in Western Palestine, owing to the variety of elevation and climate. When these resources failed, a mixture of grains (as the Hebrew indicates) called "fodder" or "provender," Job 6:5; Isa 30:24, was given, or the torn "straw" left by the threshing-machine. See Thresh. In the more populous districts cattle were stall-fed, as to some extent in all parts. 1 Kgs 4:23; Prov 15:17; Hab 3:17. At present the herds and flocks of a whole village are commonly pastured together, and at night driven into some large cave, natural or artificial. It is possible that the cave shown at Bethlehem as our Saviour's birthplace was thus used - in part at least - and was really the manger in which the new-born Christ was laid.

Various provisions of the Mosaic Law concerning cattle are recorded in the following additional references: Ex 20:10; Josh 21:28; Ex 34:19; Lev 19:19; Deut 25:7; Deut 22:1, Ex 6:4, 1 Kgs 16:10.

Herds were often left to care for themselves in the vast feeding-grounds east of the Jordan. These half-wild cattle will gather in a circle around any strange object, and, if irritated, charge upon it with their horns. Ps 22:13. The wild ox of Deut 14:5, or wild bull of Isa 51:20, is probably the oryx, a powerful creature of the antelope kind, See Agriculture, Herd.

OX'-GOAD. See Goad.

O'ZEM (strength).

  1. The sixth son of Jesse. 1 Chr 2:15.

  2. A son of Jerahmeel. 1 Chr 2:25.

OZI'AS, the same as Uzziah. Matt 1:8-9.

OZ'NI (having ears; attentive), a, son of Gad; called Ezbon in Gen 46:16.

OZ'NITES, descendants of Ozni. Num 26:16.

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