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Walls in the Bible

Ancient cities were surrounded by walls, as distinguished from “unwalled villages” (Ezekiel 38:11; Leviticus 25:29-34).

To protect life and property in dangerous times, city walls were made thick and strong (Numbers 13:28; Deuteronomy 3:5).

Among the Israelites, walls were built of stone, some of those in the temple being of great size (1 Kings 6:7; 7:9-12; 1 Kings 20:30; Mark 13:1-2).

Metaphors

The term “wall” is used metaphorically of security and safety.

“Violence will not be heard again in your land,
Nor devastation or destruction within your borders;
But you will call your walls salvation, and your gates praise. —Isaiah 60:18

In that day this song will be sung in the land of Judah:
“We have a strong city;
He sets up walls and ramparts for security. —Isaiah 26:1

Quotations

By faith the walls of Jericho fell down after they had been encircled for seven days. —Hebrews 11:30 ESV

A man without self-control is like a city broken into and left without walls. —Proverbs 25:28 ESV

Hebrews had more than one word for “wall”

  1. chomah

    Hebrew: חוֹמָה —transliteration: chomah —meaning: a wall —occurences: 133 times in Scripture (e.g., Exodus 14:22; Deuteronomy 3:5)

  2. gader

    Hebrew: גָּדֵר —transliteration: gader —meaning: a wall —occurences: 11 times in Scripture (e.g., Ezra 9:9; Isaiah 5:5; Psalm 62:3)

  3. shur

    Hebrew: שׁוּר —transliteration: shur —meaning: a wall —occurences: 4 times in Scripture (Genesis 49:22; 2 Samuel 22:30; Job 24:11; Psalm 18:29)

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Article Version: July 16, 2021