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Blog Series - The Meanings of NumbersView All Parts
The Hebrew way of writing number 45 is by putting two letters together: mem (40) and hey (5).
The number 45 is the biblical number for “divine shaking.” Mem (מ) is water signifying a flow of history or time. Hey (ה) at the beginning of a Hebrew word means “the” or “behold.” So h’erets means “the land.” In the middle of a word, hey signifies inspiration or revelation of the Holy Spirit. We see this when God changed Abram’s name to Abraham, setting forth the pattern of being begotten by the Spirit so that the son of promise could be born. At the end of the word, hey means “what comes from.”
Mem-hey is a combination of water and breath (or wind), resulting in a storm (waves). When God breathes upon the earth (and water), the earth shakes. The best example of this is seen at Mount Sinai, where God’s voice shook the mount. This is described in Psalm 46:1-3,
1 God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. 2 Therefore, will not we fear, though the earth be removed, and though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea; 3 though the waters thereof roar and be troubled, though the mountains shake with the swelling thereof. Selah.
When God’s presence descended upon Mount Sinai, “the whole mountain shook violently” (Exodus 19:18) and “the sound of the trumpet grew louder and louder” (Exodus 19:19). Hebrews 12:26-28 comments on this, saying,
26 And His voice shook the earth then, but now He has promised, saying, “Yet once more I will shake not only the earth but also the heaven.” 27 This expression, “Yet once more,” denotes the removing of those things which can be shaken, as of created things, so that those things which cannot be shaken may remain. 28 Therefore, since we receive a kingdom which cannot be shaken, let us show gratitude, by which we may offer to God an acceptable service with reverence and awe.
This was a commentary on Haggai 2:6, 7, where a great shaking is said to take place in the context of building the second temple. The shaking overthrows all other temples, leaving only the true temple standing firm.
Psalm 46 (quoted earlier) is actually the 45th psalm in the Septuagint. This is because Psalm 9 and 10 are two halves of the same psalm. Therefore, what most Bibles call Psalm 11 is really Psalm 10. Likewise, Psalm 46 is really Psalm 45. (See The Genesis Book of Psalms.) So the 45th psalm speaks of the mountains shaking and quaking at the presence and voice of Christ.
The last great shaking, prophesied in Hebrews 12:27, is no longer a local event at Mount Sinai but is now shaking the whole earth as well the heavens.
As a side note, when the KJV was being edited in the year 1611, Francis Bacon was the final editor. Bacon was also the author of the plays that were published under the name of William Shakespeare. When Bacon came to Psalm 46, he took note that this was the center chapter of the Bible. He put his cryptic mark upon it—his signature, of sorts. The 46th word in the psalm is “shake” (Psalm 46:3 KJV), and the word “spear” is the 46th word from the end of the psalm (in Psalm 46:9 KJV). The King James Version, of course, is written in Shakespearean English.
It seems that Francis Bacon inadvertently verified the prophecy of the divine shaking in the 45th psalm even though he thought it was the 46th psalm.
Psalm 42-72 is the Exodus Book of Psalms. Each of these psalms correlates with an event in the book of Exodus. It happens that Psalm 45 correlates with God’s marriage proposal to Israel at Mount Sinai (Exodus 19:4-6). Psalm 46 correlates with the shaking (Exodus 19:16-20) to prepare the people for that marriage. Psalm 47 correlates with Israel’s acceptance of the marriage proposal.
So we see that the 45th time Jacob’s name is mentioned is found in Genesis 29:28.
28 Jacob did so and completed her week, and he [Laban] gave him his daughter Rachel as his wife.
Just as Jacob married Rachel when his name appears for the 45th time, so also God married Israel at Mount Sinai, which is the event that correlates with Psalm 46—which is really Psalm 45. God’s marriage is a union of heaven and earth. It is the basis of impregnating the Bride of Christ by the seed of the Holy Spirit to bring forth the children of God.
To get the full story, of course, we must understand that there are two brides, one fleshly and one spiritual. This is expressed in the allegory of Abraham’s two wives, Hagar and Sarah, as well as in Jacob’s two wives, Leah and Rachel. The two wives, each in their own way, represent the two covenants (mothers) and their sons—one fleshly, the other spiritual.
Likewise, we must also know the difference between Abram and Abraham, as well as the difference between Jacob and Israel. In each case, the first represented men who were not yet filled with the Spirit, while the second represented men who were changed by the Spirit. On a prophetic level, while God was shaking the earth at Sinai, the people were consecrating themselves (Exodus 19:22).
This great shaking also included “thunder and lightning flashes and a thick cloud upon the mountain” (Exodus 19:16). This depicts a storm, such as we see when the breath of God blows upon the water—the sea of peoples. We have two good examples of such storms in the New Testament.
In the first example, Jesus fed the 5,000 at Passover (John 6:4) and then ascended a mountain so the people would not be able to proclaim Him King (John 6:15). This prophesied of Christ’s first coming, His death, resurrection, and ascension.
Then Jesus sent His disciples across the Sea of Galilee into a storm to signify prophetically the tribulation that was to come upon the church after His ascension. Christ then came to the disciples, walking on the water in the middle of the lake, picturing the second coming of Christ in the midst of tribulation and also in the midst of the feast of Tabernacles.
Peter (the overcomer) went out to meet Him (1 Thessalonians 4:17), walking on the water, to escort Him to the boat. Jesus then calmed the storm and brought them immediately to Capernaum (Kippur Nahum, “covering of the Comforter”). We learn this in John 6:21 and 24.
The main lesson to be derived from this is that the storm was caused by the breath of God. Nothing happened outside of His control. For this reason, Jesus told the disciples, “Do not be afraid” (John 6:20). The same account is given in Matthew 14:22-32, where we learn that Peter walked on the water to meet Jesus. Yet he too was afraid, as Matthew 14:30 tells us,
30 But seeing the wind, he became frightened, and beginning to sink, he cried out, “Lord, save me!”
In the story, Peter represented the overcomers, and so his example of fear may be of comfort to all overcomers who are still frightened by the wind (breath) of God. The purpose of God is to teach us to keep our eyes on Him and to walk in faith, not in fear. Faith does not come naturally. Those who learn to walk in such faith are the overcomers.
Another example of a storm is in Paul’s journey to Rome in Acts 27. This example focuses upon the world system, rather than the church. Hence the ship broke apart in the end, but no one was lost (Acts 27:13). They all landed safely on the island of Malta, then known as Melita (“Honey”), representing the land flowing with milk and honey (Numbers 14:8).
The castaways then gathered wood to build a fire, and a serpent bit the Apostle Paul. But he cast it into the fire (Acts 28:3, 5) and the father of Governor Publius was healed and converted (Acts 28:8-10).
These prophecies relate to the end of the present age as we witness the shipwreck of Babylon while we enter our Promised Land. God is blowing upon the waters, which are “peoples and multitudes and nations and tongues” (Revelation 17:15). His purpose seems destructive to those who do not know His mind and purpose. Yet it was only the Ship of Babylon that was destroyed by the breath of God. We know that God intends to save all mankind, first by releasing them from the oppression of the world system, and then by healing the nations (Revelation 22:2).
Meanwhile, the great serpent is cast into the lake of fire (Revelation 20:10), even as Paul cast the serpent into the fire on the Island of Melita (Malta). This is the second great prophetic allegory showing the result of the shaking of the heavens and the earth at the end of the age. The shaking is caused by the breath of God and its action upon the waters (peoples) of the earth.
Acts 27:44 concludes, “And so it happened that they all were brought safely to land.” The purpose of the storm (and the breath of God) was to save everyone—not just Paul, the believer, but also other prisoners, passengers, and even the Roman centurion (Acts 27:1).
Blog Series - The Meanings of NumbersView All Parts