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Blog Series - The Meanings of NumbersView All Parts
The Hebrew way of writing number 44 is by putting two letters together: mem (40) and dalet (4).
Mem (מ) is water signifying a flow of history or time. Daleth (ד) is a door in Hebrew and is also the number 4. Four is the number of the earth (material creation). The number 44 is a double four, which is a more intense form of four. The number 44 means “chosen people.”
The Hebrew word adama means “the ground, soil, earth.” Adam was given his name to identify him with the earth. This is why God told him in Genesis 3:19, “till you return to the ground, because from it you were taken; for you are dust, and to dust you shall return.”
All of Adam’s children could be called “sons of men,” that is, sons of Adam, but the term “Son of Man” later took on a more prophetic meaning in Daniel 7:13). There it refers to the heir of Adam’s estate, the one who was given dominion in Genesis 1:26. In Jesus’ day, the term was understood to be a reference to the Messiah (Matthew 26:63, 64), the One chosen to receive the highest dominion. Paul calls Him “the Last Adam” and “the second man” in 1 Corinthians 15:45, 47.
It is all about being “chosen” according to the foreknowledge of God to attain the full stature of Christ. Those who form Christ’s body and who are in unity with Him are also “chosen,” because they are extensions of Jesus Christ Himself. To be chosen is accomplished by the indwelling of the Holy Spirit. The Spirit is first given to us as a pledge (Ephesians 1:14) until God sees fit to give us our garments of glory that are now reserved for us in heaven (2 Corinthians 5:1).
These are the spiritual garments that were taken from Adam and Eve when they sinned and were found “naked” (Genesis 3:7). When Jesus died on the cross to pay their sin-debt, those garments should have been returned to their original owners. After all, the debt had been paid. Yet God chose to retain them during the Pentecostal Age, making God our Debtor. He then gave us the Spirit as a pledge (as collateral) on His debt.
Debtors are the ones required to give pledges until they return to pay their debts in full. In 2 Corinthians 5:5 Paul departs from his normal Greek and uses the Hebrew word arrabon, which is translated “pledge.” The same word appears in Genesis 38:17, 18, and 20, where Judah gave Tamar a pledge (arrabon) on his debt. This pledge was not intended to be a downpayment on his debt, for he intended to retrieve his seal, his cord, and his staff later when he returned to pay his debt to her.
In Paul’s discussion in 2 Corinthians 5:1-5, God’s pledge is the Holy Spirit, which suffices until He returns the garments of glory to those who are chosen. Paul tells us in Romans 11:1-7 that being “chosen” has to do with the remnant of grace—those who have New Covenant faith who are the children of promise. “The rest were blinded” (Romans 11:7 KJV), and this blindness manifested primarily in their false claim that they were chosen because of their physical genealogy.
The number 44 has a fairly wide variety of usages and applications in Scripture. The 44th time that Abram’s name appears is in Genesis 16:1,
1 Now Sarai, Abram’s wife had borne him no children, and she had an Egyptian maid whose name was Hagar.
This is the beginning of the allegory of Sonship, showing first the natural and then the spiritual. The next verse tells us that the Sarah gave Hagar to Abram as a wife in order to fulfill the promise of God (so she thought). Apparently, she doubted her own calling at that time, having been barren for many years. So Hagar represents a seemingly “chosen” bride who would bring forth a child of the flesh called Ishmael, who was assumed to be “chosen.”
Abram was 86 years old when Ishmael was born (Genesis 16:16), and for the next 13 years he thought Ishmael was truly the chosen heir. But when Abram was 99 (Genesis17:1), God revealed to him that the chosen heir would come through Sarah (Genesis 17:19, 21). Then God gave them new names to reflect their new nature brought about by this revelation of who they were. Sarai became Sarah; Abram became Abraham.
Ishmael was the son of Abram; Isaac was the son of Abraham. The birth of Ishmael occurred before the hey (ה) was planted as a spiritual seed in the middle of his name (Abra-H-am). The hey indicates the breath of God (Holy Spirit), showing that the true “chosen people” are those who have been begotten by the Holy Spirit.
In other words, to be chosen, one must have Abraham as his father and Sarah as his mother. God’s chosen people are those who are begotten by Abrahamic faith and born through the New Covenant.
Paul explains this thoroughly in Galatians 4, where we find that Hagar and Sarah each represented a different covenant. Hagar represented the Old Covenant, Mount Sinai in Arabia, which was part of the inheritance of Ishmael. In Galatians 4:22-25 we find that those who were born through the Old Covenant were the children of Hagar. Allegorically speaking, these children of the flesh had the appearance of being chosen for a season, but in the end, “flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God” (1 Corinthians 15:50).
Paul writes in Romans 9:6-8,
6 … For they are not all Israel who are descended [physically] from Israel; 7 nor are they all children because they are Abraham’s [physical] descendants, but “through Isaac your descendants will be named.” 8 That is, it is not the children of the flesh who are children of God, but the children of the promise are regarded as descendants.
Paul explains this more thoroughly in Galatians 4:22-31, telling us that men are chosen not by fleshly genealogy but by the Holy Spirit (hey) and the promise of God (Galatians 4:28). The children of Abraham, like Isaac, are children of promise, and those who receive the enduring word are begotten through their ears (1 Peter 1:23-25). Likewise, Sarah is the New Covenant in this great allegory (Galatians 4:24-26). These are the two “parents” of the chosen ones.
The 44th time that Abraham’s name appears is in Genesis 21:14, where we find Hagar and Ishmael being sent away in order to resolve the issue of who was truly chosen:
14 So Abraham rose early in the morning, and took bread and a skin of water, and gave them to Hagar, putting them on her shoulder, and gave her the boy, and sent her away. And she departed and wandered about in the wilderness of Beersheba.
The biblical allegory shows that there is sharp contention (43) between the Hagar and Sarah. Hence, 44 is the resolution of 43. Whose son was truly chosen? Who was given the promise to inherit the Kingdom? Ishmael was older, and so normally, he would have been the heir. But Ishmael was born naturally as a child of the flesh and was not the heir promised to Abraham. In the providence of God, the heir was to come through Sarah alone, for she too had a promise from God. Further, seeing as how Sarah was 90 years old when she bore Isaac, the event took on a supernatural character. So in Romans 4:19 Paul speaks of “the deadness of her womb.”
Abraham’s uncertainty in the book of Genesis carried on throughout history even to the present time. Many people believe that the chosen people are those who may trace their physical genealogy back to Abraham, as if this qualifies them to inherit God’s Kingdom, whether or not they have New Covenant faith. As with Ishmael himself, these appear to be chosen, but in the end, they must be “cast out” (Galatians 4:30).
The 44th time that Isaac is mentioned is in Genesis 26:25, which follows God’s affirmation that His promise referred to Isaac.
25 So he built an altar there, and called upon the name of the Lord, and pitched his tent there; and there Isaac’s servants dug a well.
Joel 2:32 says, “And it will come about that whoever calls on the name of the Lord will be delivered.” Paul quotes this in Romans 10:13. So Isaac here was fulfilling the type of salvation or deliverance. This was followed by digging a well to obtain “the springs of salvation” (Isaiah 12:3). The term “salvation” is from the Hebrew word yeshua. These are the wells of Yeshua the Christ, prophesied in John 7:37-39. It was a reference to the Holy Spirit welling up from within our innermost being. This is the significance of the Hebrew letter hey being inserted in the middle of Abram’s name to read Abraham.
This is how we are to interpret Isaac’s experience after contending with the Philistines over the water rights. In this case, the Philistines too represented the children of the flesh who unlawfully lay claim to the wells of Yeshua-salvation.
The 44th time that Jacob’s name appears is in Genesis 29:21,
21 Then Jacob said to Laban, “Give me my wife, for my time is completed, that I may go in to her.”
In the story we read that Laban gave Leah to Jacob under the pretext that the older daughter had to be married before the younger. The book of Jasher tells us that Leah and Rachel were twins, so it would have been difficult for Jacob to distinguish between them, especially if they were wearing veils.
Nonetheless, this story also serves as another witness to the divine plan, for Leah and Rachel played similar prophetic roles as Hagar and Sarah had played in an earlier generation. Leah produced more children, being lawfully married to Jacob. But Rachel had a love-relationship with Jacob and was the one to bring forth the birthright son, the “chosen” one (1 Chronicles 5:1, 2).
So the 44th time that Jacob’s name appears is where he is claiming Rachel as his wife. She was the one chosen to bring forth Joseph, the birthright son. For this reason alone, she represented the New Covenant, as did Sarah before her.
We also note that “Leah’s eyes were weak” (Genesis 29:17), either being nearsighted or perhaps cross-eyed. Whatever the case, Paul tells us in Romans 11:7 KJV that the chosen ones constituted only a tiny remnant of Israelites, while “the rest were blinded.” Paul later qualified his statement in Romans 11:25 KJV, telling us that Israelites as a whole suffered from “blindness in part.” To the apostle Paul, blindness is the chief characteristic of those who are NOT chosen.
Hence, we can view both Leah and Rachel allegorically. Leah suffered from partial blindness; Rachel did not. Leah gave birth to Judah; Rachel gave birth to Joseph. Judah was given the dominion temporarily “until Shiloh comes” (Genesis 49:10). Shiloh was a town in Ephraim, one of the tribes of Joseph. Judah was given the dominion, and so Jesus came the first time through the tribe of Judah. But in His second coming, He comes with “a robe dipped in blood” (Revelation 19:13). This identifies Him with Joseph, whose robe was dipped in blood (Genesis 37:31).
Recall that Joseph had two dreams in which he saw his brothers bowing down to him (Genesis 37:5, 9). This was literally fulfilled many years later when “Joseph’s brothers came and bowed down to him with their faces to the ground” (Genesis 42:6). This included Judah. From a prophetic viewpoint we understand that in the end, Judah’s dominion mandate would be subordinate to Joseph when two sticks of Judah and Joseph were reunited in the hand of Christ (Ezekiel 37:17) at the time of His second coming.
This too is part of what it means to be chosen.
Joshua’s name is mentioned for the 44th time in Joshua 4:8,
8 Thus the sons of Israel did as Joshua  commanded and took up twelve stones from the middle of the Jordan, just as the Lord spoke to Joshua  according to the number of the tribes of the sons of Israel; and they carried them over with them to the lodging place and put them down there.
In this case the twelve stones represented the twelve tribes of Israel, who were supposed to be the “chosen” nation, the people of God. These stones were taken to Gilgal, where they were used to build an altar of witness. This prophesied of Israel’s second baptism, the first being when they crossed the Red Sea (1 Corinthians 10:2). This second baptism signified the baptism of the Spirit, which qualified them as God’s witnesses.
Each stone represented a tribe of Israel, and when these were placed together, the altar bore witness of the divine plan—not only for themselves, but also for Jesus Himself, who was later baptized by John at that very place. Baptism itself speaks of both death and resurrection, but the main emphasis is on resurrection.
So all Israel crossed the Jordan into the Promised Land. This was an Old Testament type and shadow of greater things to come, when our own Joshua (Yeshua-Jesus) leads us into the Kingdom at His second coming. In His first coming, He came as a type of Moses (Acts 3:22) to lead us out of the house of bondage (to sin). In His second coming, He will come as a type of Joshua, the Ephraimite of the house of Joseph to lead us into our Promised Land. At that time, Jesus, the anointed chosen One, will give the promised inheritance to the Isaac company of chosen ones.
In the New Testament, the 44th time Jesus is mentioned in the book of Luke is on the Mount of Transfiguration in Luke 9:35, 36,
35 And a voice came out of the cloud, saying, “This is My Son, My Chosen One; listen to Him!” 36 And when the voice had spoken, Jesus was found alone.
Here the divine verdict corrects Peter’s enthusiastic plan to build three tabernacles for Moses, Elijah, and Jesus. The voice from heaven declares Jesus to be “My Son, My Chosen One.”
In John 4:50 Jesus is mentioned for the 44th time in that book when Jesus tells the Nobleman, “Go your way; your son lives.” Sonship again finds a prominent theme in the number 44 in regard to “Chosen People.”
The 44th time that Peter is mentioned in the book of Acts is in Acts 11:2. For context, we will quote Acts 11:1-3,
1 Now the apostles and the brethren who were throughout Judea heard that the Gentiles also had received the word of God. 2 And when Peter  came up to Jerusalem, those who were circumcised took issue with him, 3 saying, “You went to uncircumcised men and ate with them.
These were the “Gentiles” who had gathered in the house of Cornelius, the Roman centurion. Some of the Jewish Christians contended (43) with Peter, but he defended the Gentiles, saying, in effect, that they can receive the promise of the fathers and can be chosen (44) as well. This was in accordance with the law in Deuteronomy 16:10, 11, commanding aliens as well as Israelites to keep the feast of weeks (“Pentecost”). Likewise, Numbers 15:16 says,
16 There is to be one law and one ordinance for you and for the alien who sojourns with you.
Whereas these laws are commands under the Old Covenant, they are promises under the New Covenant. Hence, this is not merely a command to keep the feast of Pentecost; it is also the promise of God that they will indeed keep Pentecost. “The promise made by God to our fathers” (Acts 26:6) is equally a promise to the aliens, for all must ultimately conform to the nature of God, as expressed in the law.
Peter later wrote in 1 Peter 1:23-25 that to receive the word of God is to be begotten by the incorruptible seed of the word of God. In this case above, Scripture is careful to include Gentiles in the 44th time that Peter’s name is mentioned. It is clear that Gentiles can be among the chosen people through faith and by receiving the seed of the word.
All of the great themes of Scripture are combined in the meaning of this number 44. Sonship is a large part of it, because 44 is 22 x 2. The number 22 means “Sonship; Sons of Light.” But it goes beyond the 22, because it is tied to the outpouring of the Holy Spirit upon the true Bride (Sarah, rather than Hagar). The Holy Spirit thus bears witness to who are the “chosen people” in the earth.
Blog Series - The Meanings of NumbersView All Parts