T h r e e

3 - Three - 3

By Andrew Harris 9 July, 1998 ©

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In the number three we have the first geometric figure. Two straight lines cannot enclose any space or form a planar figure. Three lines are necessary to form a planar figure and three dimensions are required to form a solid. A triangle is the simplest planar figure and a cube is the simplest three-dimensional solid. So as two could represent a square, three could represent a cube or solid contents. Three therefore represents that which is solid, real, substantial, complete and entire.

All things that are especially complete and entire are stamped with the number three.

Gods attributes are three - omniscience, omnipresence and omnipotence.
The three divisions of time - past, present and future.
The three persons in grammar - me, myself and I.
The sum of all human ability is threefold - thought, word and deed.
The three kingdoms of matter - animal, vegetable or mineral.

There are three steps listed in Acts 2:38 to lead to salvation. Repentance, Baptism and God will fill you with the Holy Spirit. Notice also that God will complete the third step.

Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.

Acts 2:38

A similar passage is in John chapter 14. Here the same process of arriving at salvation is described in different but complimentary terms.

15If ye love me, keep my commandments. 16And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever;

John 14:15-16

If we look at the two passages in parallel we see that loving Jesus is equated to repentance. Obedience is equated to baptism, which is an act of obedience. Finally that in both cases it is the Lord who will complete the third step of giving the Holy Spirit or the Comforter to us.

The Third Toldoth Division

The third division starts with:

1This is the book of the generations of Adam. In the day that God created man, in the likeness of God made he him; 2Male and female created he them; and blessed them, and called their name Adam, in the day when they were created.

Genesis 5:1-2

This division covers the descendants of Adam (10 Generations) to Noah, God sees the wickedness of man upon the earth and decides to deal with it. Being the children of Adam was not sufficient to save them. God allowed men to continue until their sin was complete, before punishing them. A similar situation was when God promised Abram (Abraham) his descendants would possess the land of Cannan.

15And thou shalt go to thy fathers in peace; thou shalt be buried in a good old age. 16But in the fourth generation they shall come hither again: for the iniquity of the Amorites is not yet full.

Genesis 15:15-16

Here in the third toldoth we see that mankind's sin only took ten generation to become complete, ie. to get to the point where God stopped warning them, but punished them. Also we meet Enoch. Elsewhere we are told that Enoch was a preacher, in fact his very name means a teacher, or to teach.

14And Enoch also, the seventh from Adam, prophesied of these, saying, Behold, the Lord cometh with ten thousands of his saints, 15To execute judgment upon all, and to convince all that are ungodly among them of all their ungodly deeds which they have ungodly committed, and of all their hard speeches which ungodly sinners have spoken against him.

Jude 14-15

Thus it would appear that for three generations before Noah and the flood, God was warning the people to repent. Thus, by the time of Noah, not only had their sin come to completion, but so had their willing ignorance of the Word of God.

It is worth noting that this third division contains a total of 40 verses. It would appear that God was allowing the people to be tested to see what they would do. Just like the children of Israel, who left to their own devices for forty days while Moses was on the mountain, they did not do well.

Words Which Occur Three Times


The Hebrew word rm'[; aw-marí which properly means to gather together into a heap, and thus representative of the grain heaped for market and so meaning merchandise. The three times that this word are:

And it shall be, if thou have no delight in her, then thou shalt let her go whither she will; but thou shalt not sell her at all for money, thou shalt not make merchandise of her, because thou hast humbled her.

Deuteronomy 21:14

If a man be found stealing any of his brethren of the children of Israel, and maketh merchandise of him, or selleth him; then that thief shall die; and thou shalt put evil away from among you.

Deuteronomy 24:7

5Let them all be confounded and turned back that hate Zion. 6Let them be as the grass upon the housetops, which withereth afore it groweth up: 7Wherewith the mower filleth not his hand; nor he that bindeth sheaves his bosom.

Psalm 129:5-7

Let me just remark upon the coincidence that the chapters in which this word is found are all multiples of three, while the verses are all multiples of seven. Seven is spiritual perfection and so we see that the use of this word is meant to show us something spiritual. The first two times it is used it is talking of the practice of slavery. In particular, the first time refers to how a woman taken captive in time of war is to be treated. If she was made a concubine or wife, she could not then be treated as a slave. This situation is something the Lord forsaw happening, but it is not what he wanted the Israelites to do. Nevertheless if they did, there was a law for the situation. The second use of the word is in forbidding the Israelites to make slaves of their own people. Finally the last use of the word is in a descriptive phrase. Let those who hate Jerusalem, be as grass trying to grow upon a rooftop, it will not prosper, there is not even enough to get a handful. In summary, there is nothing of blessing associated with this word 'merchandise'. It is a case of don't, don't and a cursing. This should always be remembered when materialism (merchandise) threatens your spiritual life. We are reminded of the parable of the sower and the seed.

He also that received seed among the thorns is he that heareth the word; and the care of this world, and the deceitfulness of riches, choke the word, and he becometh unfruitful.

Matthew 13:22

Where to go from here

The symbolism of the number four.

Symbolic meanings of the numbers.

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