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    The Biblical Concept of the Eyes

    The Bible is full of eyes. In many instances, the Hebrew word ayin עין meaning “eye” refers to the physical organ on our faces. But just as frequently, the word “eye” stands for a deeper feature of one’s character. This is because in the world of ancient Israel the eyes were regarded as a sign of one’s genuine character. 

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    What is behind the eyes?

    Let’s see a few examples:
    The Bible warns against displaying an ayin ra’ah “evil eye” towards the needy – resentfully withholding assistance (Deut. 28:54).
    Behaving mercifully or having pity is having a “sparing eye” חס עין ḥas ayin (Deut. 7:16)
    Eyes can be an indication of lofty arrogance – room einav רוּם עֵינָיו meaning “raised eyes” (Isa. 10:12).
    The opposite is “low eyes” shaḥ einaim שַׁח עֵינַיִם – It is the trait of the humble, whom God will save according to Job 22:29. 

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    Learn Hebrew, see the real Bible

    Unfortunately, when you read the Bible in translation you have no idea that all these character traits are based on the “eyes”. This is because the translation has allegorized these phrases, obscuring the original Hebrew. Let us help you see the real meaning of the Bible. Enroll in our live online Biblical Hebrew course today. 


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