HEBREW WORD FOR NOON
The first thing to point out is that the biblical day begins at evening (GENESIS 1:5; LEVITICUS
23:32). While there are some who opt for a day beginning at daylight or morning, it is not the intent of this article to examine
that belief. Knowing that the day begins at evening should cause us to immediately recognize that the day does not begin at
noon. This is primarily because there are two completely different words for evening and noon in the Hebrew Scriptures.
is defined as follows, by Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance, and Brown, Drivers, Briggs Hebrew Lexicon:
SEC Definition / ‛ereb / eh'-reb / From
H6153 / ‛ereb / BDB Definition: / 1) evening, night, sunset / 1a)
evening, sunset / 1b) night
While paying careful attention to the definition for the Hebrew word for evening, take note
of the entirely different Hebrew word translated into English as “noon” in the King James Version of the Bible:H6150; dusk:— + day, even (-ing, tide), night.
H6672 / SEC Definition / tsohar / tso'-har / From
H6672 / tsohar / BDB
Definition: / 1) noon, midday (noun masculine) / 1a) noon (as specific time of day) / 1b) noon (in simile as bright of happiness,
blessing) / 2) roof (noun feminine) / 2a) meaning dubiousH6671; a light (that is, window); dual double light, that is, noon:—midday,
noon (-day, -tide), window.
These two Hebrew words are never used synonymously
in the entire Bible. As a matter of fact they are used in opposition to one another as different time frames of a 24 hour
day in the following passage:
Evening, and morning, and at noon, will
I pray, and cry aloud: and he shall hear my voice. [PSALMS 55:17]
is clear from this passage that the Psalmist speaks of three different specific time periods. Notice specifically that evening
and noon are mentioned as separate time periods in the above passage, proving conclusively that noon (the apex of the sun)
is not evening in any way.
THE MEANING OF EVEN, EVENING, ETC.
The easiest way to prove the meaning of the word evening is not necessarily by going to a Hebrew dictionary or lexicon,
but by going to clear instances or uses of the Hebrew world ereb in the Old Testament in order to develop the proper meaning
of the term according to the context. Here are such verses that do just that.
And (the) Almighty
called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And the evening and the morning were the first day. [GENESIS 1:5]
Without me planting anything into your thoughts, read the above Scripture and ask yourself which terms are synonymous?
And for these ye shall be unclean: whosoever toucheth the carcase of them shall be unclean until the even. And whosoever
beareth ought of the carcase of them shall wash his clothes, and be unclean until the even. [LEVITICUS 11:24-25]
Compare the above verse with the following:
toucheth any creeping thing, whereby he may be made unclean, or a man of whom he may take uncleanness, whatsoever uncleanness
he hath; The soul which hath touched any such shall be unclean until even, and shall not eat of the holy things, unless he
wash his flesh with water. And when the sun is down, he shall be clean… [LEVITICUS 22:5-7]
Out of ALL the scriptures so far, the ONLY evening is the one that ENDS the day, why is that????
The Leviticus 11 passage places the man clean at even, while the Leviticus 22 passage
places the man clean when the sun is down; this shows that even is equivalent with when the sun is down.
In the morning thou shalt say, Would (the) Almighty it were even! and at even thou shalt say, Would (the) Almighty
it were morning! for the fear of thine heart wherewith thou shalt fear, and for the sight of thine eyes which thou shalt see.
This verse places evening and morning as opposites, i.e. night verses day.
And David said to Uriah, Tarry here to day also, and to morrow I will let thee depart. So Uriah abode in Jerusalem
that day, and the morrow. 13And when David had called him, he did eat and drink before him; and he made him drunk: and at
even he went out to lie on his bed with the servants of his lord, but went not down to his house. And it came to pass in the
morning, that David wrote a letter to Joab, and sent it by the hand of Uriah. [2 SAMUEL 11:12-14]
Here we have evening mentioned as the time Uriah went to lie down on his bed, and then we have the phrase, “…and
it came to pass in the morning…” This is simple to understand.
Then shalt thou bring
forth thy stuff by day in their sight, as stuff for removing: and thou shalt go forth at even in their sight, as they that
go forth into captivity. Dig thou through the wall in their sight, and carry out thereby. In their sight shalt thou bear it
upon thy shoulders, and carry it forth in the twilight: thou shalt cover thy face, that thou see not the ground: for I have
set thee for a sign unto the house of Israel. And I did so as I was commanded: I brought forth my stuff by day, as stuff for
captivity, and in the even I digged through the wall with mine hand; I brought it forth in the twilight, and I bare it upon
my shoulder in their sight. And in the morning came the word of Yahweh unto me… [EZEKIEL 12:4-8]
Here, even is mentioned as the equivalent of twilight and as the opposite of morning which came after evening.
And Laban gathered together all the men of the place, and made a feast. And it came to pass in the evening, that
he took Leah his daughter, and brought her to him; and he went in unto her. And Laban gave unto his daughter Leah Zilpah his
maid for an handmaid. And it came to pass, that in the morning, behold, it was Leah: and he said to Laban, What is this thou
hast done unto me… [GENESIS 29:22-25]
Notice that Jacob went in to Leah in the evening,
the normal time a man would go into a woman. Then we have the morning being mentioned implying that they went into each other
and then slept and then morning (daylight) came.
And Jacob came out of the field in the evening,
and Leah went out to meet him, and said, Thou must come in unto me; for surely I have hired thee with my son’s mandrakes.
And he lay with her that night. [GENESIS 30:16]
Here we see that Jacob
came out from the field (most likely finishing work) at evening, and then lay with Leah that night; evening and night being
the same thing.
But it shall be, when evening cometh on, he shall wash himself with water: and
when the sun is down, he shall come into the camp again. [DEUTERONOMY 23:11]
Here we see that
as evening cometh on (draweth near) the person was to wash himself, then when the sun is down (evening no longer coming on
but present) he is clean to enter the camp.
forth unto his work and to his labour until the evening. [PSALMS 104:23]
Everyone knows that it
is common for man to work in the daytime and come home or enter home at night.
the street near her corner; and he went the way to her house, In the twilight, in the evening , in the black and dark night:
And, behold, there met him a woman with the attire of an harlot, and subtle of heart. [PROVERBS 7:8-10]
We see here the three emboldened terms above used synonymously.
Their horses also are
swifter than the leopards, and are more fierce than the evening wolves… [HABBAKUK 1:8]
princes within her are roaring lions; her judges are evening wolves; they gnaw not the bones till the morrow. [ZEPHANIAH 3:3]
Benjamin shall ravin as a wolf: in the morning he shall devour the prey, and at
night he shall divide the spoil. [GENESIS 49:27]
Everyone associates wolves with darkness, not
with noonday. Also note that the word “night” in the Genesis passage is the Hebrew word ereb.
And it shall come to pass in that day, that the light shall not be clear, nor dark: But it shall be one day which
shall be known to Yahweh, not day, nor night: but it shall come to pass, that at evening time it shall be light. [ZECHARIAH
For evening time to be light is an exceptional thing of abnormality; normally evening
time is dark.
So am I made to possess months of vanity, and wearisome nights are appointed to
me. When I lie down, I say, When shall I arise, and the night be gone? and I am full of tossings to and fro unto the dawning
of the day. [JOB 7:3-4]
The second night here is translated from the Hebrew word ereb. Could it
be any more clearer that ereb here refers to the night time?
And the king of Ai he hanged on a
tree until eventide: and as soon as the sun was down, Joshua commanded that they should take his carcase down from the tree,
and cast it at the entering of the gate of the city, and raise thereon a great heap of stones, that remaineth unto this day.
Notice carefully that the king hung on the tree until eventide. This is equivalent
with the statement that Joshua commanded him to be brought down as soon as the sun was down.
noticing that evening and the time of sun down being synonymous, we should also take the following Scriptures into consideration
for this study.
And it came to pass, that, when the sun went down, and it was dark, behold a smoking
furnace, and a burning lamp that passed between those pieces. [GENESIS 15:17]
We clearly see here
that when the sun went down, it was dark. This means the light of the day had vanished and it was then night. In opposition
to this, notice this verse:
And it shall come to pass in that day, saith the Lord Yahweh, that
I will cause the sun to go down at noon, and I will darken the earth in the clear day… [AMOS 8:9]
This passage is akin to Zechariah 14:6-7 in that it is a supernatural, extraordinary occurrence. While the sun begins
its waning or going down at noon, it does not go down (get dark) at noon. Neither is clear day normally dark. In this passage
sun down and darken are equals, and noon and clear day are equals. This once again, with no ambiguity, shows that noon and
evening are not synonymous.
What all of this shows is that evening and noon are not the same time
periods. Noon is a time period during the daylight hours of the day, and evening is a time period of the beginning of the
day - the sun down or dark portion of the day.