edited December 1969 in Coptic Orthodox Church

I'm just wondering what the number 14 represents because I've read it being used several times in the Holy Bible.



  • Interesting. I'll make an educated guess...

    Seven means perfection.. and fourteen is double seven... soo double measure of spiritual perfection? :P

    "God's perfection" = 14 letters (lol i made that up)

    I googled it and found this.. "14 ~ Deliverance or Salvation (1 + 4 = 5)" I'm not sure how 5 = salvation though?
  • where have you seen it exactly?
  • TITL, lol I liked your "God's deliverance" thing... very clever. I wouldn't have thought of that one at all! I don't think your last interpretation is correct, though. I know the number 5 is used to represent humanity.

    Abanoub, I believe that verse is in Matthew 1... towards the end of the geneologies. 14 generations between Abraham and David, 14 generations between David and the war of Babylon, and then 14 generations between the war and the birth of Christ. I think that's how it is... I might be mistaken in the differences but I know it goes 14, 14, 14.

  • well the Bible mentions 7 many times and it is referred as the perfect number
  • Thank you for all those ideas, but does anyone have anything directly from books written by forefathers or by clergy members?

    thank you.
  • Every  March 8/9, our church gives us a new book of Pope Kyrillos' miracles.You read the most recent entries and some other great miracles that people forgot to report.I got the new one for this year this early early morning, so I do not know what is inside. But the one I got last year, the first few pages has original writings of Pope kyrillos while he was living in a cave near the monastery.For example, in the book ,Abuna Mina ( as was known back then) wrote that God promised Adam that He would save him after 5.5 days by being born from his daughter. Abuna Mina explains those 5.5 days as 5500 years.In other words, the Lord Jesus Christ was born 5500 years after man's fall from grace. So everytime you have 14 generations,it actually means 7 x2 generations, as the number 7 is considered sacred in both Jewish and Christian traditions. Otherweise ,it would not make much sense if the Gospel writers had written 7 generations followed by 7 generations..etc. So what i think is the 14 in the Gospel of Matta is not about the number 14 but about the two 7's contained within it..I do not know if I am making sense,but i thought i should give it a try.

    What strikes me as interesting is the number 8. For example, the following was published in our church newspaper and fortunately, I found a copy in the internet.

    What is the shortest chapter in the Bible?
    (answer - Psalms 117)

    What is the longest chapter in the Bible?
    (answer - Psalms 119)

    Which chapter is in the center of the Bible?
    (answer - Psalms 118)

    Fact:  There are 594 chapters before Psalms 118

    Fact:  There are 594 chapters after Psalms 118

    Add these numbers up and you get 1188

    What is the center verse in the Bible?
    (answer - Psalms 118:8 )

    Does this verse say something significant about God's perfect will for our lives?

    The next time someone says they would like to find God's perfect will for their lives and that they want to be in the center of His Will, just send them to the center of His word!

    Psalms 118:8 (NKJV)  "It is better to trust in the LORD than to put confidence in man."

    Now isn't that odd how this worked out (or was God in the center of it?)

    Even the heavenly bodies reveal that the number 8 is something heavenly. Have a look at this pic.


    The shape in the image is called analemma - this is the position of the sun in the sky at a certain time of day (as noon) at one locale measured at regular intervals throughout the year that has the shape of a figure 8.

    Wishing a blessed Pope Kyrillos' commemoration day!

  • I know that list was published in your Church newspaper, and I am not disagreeing with the sentiment, but it is not part of our Orthodox tradition because it only works with a Protestant Bible.

    The Bible was not divided into our modern chapters until the Middle Ages in the West, and not into the verses which we use until the Protestant movement. The Protestant Bibles exclude many books of the Bible which the Orthodox consider scripture.

    Therefore though it might be interesting to consider how a variety of editions of the Bible can be analysed in this way we would not come out with the same result as our Fathers.

    I have tried very hard to find Patristic commentary on the passage in Matthew which refers to fourteen generations. As far as I can see none of the major Fathers give any numerological value to 14. St John Chrysostom makes mention of the division of the generations but is not so interested in the number. St Jerome does not mention the number. St Ambrose does not add anything.

    Pseudo-Chrysostom says that the generations are divided into 14s because at the end of each group the state of the Jewish people changed. Remigius says that he has provided 3 times 14 'to show the perfection of law, prophecy and grace consists in the faith of the Holy Trinity'. Augustine notes that there are actually 40 names mentioned and makes much of 40 being 4 times 10 and 10 being the sum of all the numbers in 4. Remigius again says 6 is the number of labour and 7 of rest, and 6 times 7 is 3 times 14.

    Father Peter
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