The number “four” has a global significance or relates to the world. There are some common and similar expressions in the Scripture which are “the four winds of the heavens” or “the four corners of the earth” or “the four ends of the heavens.” Each of these expressions relate to the earth or the world in a collective manner. In the book of Daniel chapter 2, one reads about a dream which Nebuchadnezzar dreamed. 

In this dream, he saw an image set up and this image had four distinct parts. Each of these parts represented an empire which ruled over the world. In the book of Deuteronomy chapter 22, Israel is told to make a four corner garment and place a tzitzit upon each corner. The tzitzit represents the Biblical commandments of the Torah (see Numbers chapter 15). These commandments are
understood as being a framework for life in this world, as when one dies, the tzitzit are removed from one’s four corner garment for burial.

In the books of Ezekiel and Revelation, one encounters the four beasts which are inthe heavens and never cease to praise HaShem. It is understood that the four beasts who continuously say, “Holy, Holy, Holy is the L-rd G-d of Hosts, Who was and is and is to come” (see Revelation 4:6-9) are related to the will of God for all the world (His creation). In a similar manner, one of the Seraphim called to another saying, “Holy, Holy, Holy, is the Lord of Hosts, all of the earth (shall be) with His Glory.”




In order for a person to understand the meaning of the number “five”, one must first realize that the meaning of the number ten is completion or wholeness. Since five is half of ten, the idea is that the number five represents incompletion or that which is lacking. A Scripture that expresses this idea is found in the book of John. At a place called Beit Chesed (Bethesda), there was a pool whose waters healed the sick. 

The reader is told that around the pool there were five porches. It is stated that on these five porches laid individuals who were not whole. Some were paralyzed and the rest of them had a variety of health problems. It is not a chance happening that these people who were lacking their health were on five porches. Another well-known passage that contains the number five is found in I Samuel 17. In the account of David and Goliath, David picks up five stones (see I Samuel 17:40). Why is the reader told the specific number and not simply that David had gathered a few stones? 

The answer is to assist the reader in understanding that the stone which David hurled at Goliath was not the source of victory. Rather, this was only the means that God used to accomplish His victory. In other words, the stone and even David, who hurled this stone at Goliath, were insufficient to bring about this victory. One of the first places where the idea of “lacking” or “incompleteness” is seen in regard to the number five is in the book of Genesis. 

In chapter 18, two angels are sent to Sodom to destroy the city. God tells Abraham that if 50 righteous people are found in the city, then the city will be free of this punishment (We will learn that the number 50 is related to freedom when this number is studied). This is revealed to Abraham and he responds saying, perhaps the city will lack 50 righteous people by five. It is significant that Abraham uses the number five when referring to the city lacking enough righteous people.


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