E l e v e n

11 - Eleven - 11

By Andrew Harris 25 February 1999 ©

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If ten is ordinal perfection, then eleven is perfect organization plus one more, one extra. One more than required, an extra measure, something more than only what is required. Eleven is the number of revelation. The first time eleven is mentioned in the Bible is:

And he (Jacob) rose up that night, and took his two wives, and his two women-servants, and his eleven sons, and passed over the ford Jabbok.

Genesis 32:22

At this time Jacobs wife Rachael was pregnant with his twelfth son Benjamin. Jacob and his family were returning to the lands of his father after many years away. Jacob originally left to flee his brother Esau's wrath after tricking him out of their fathers birthright. Upon this return trip he sought to placate Esau with gifts before he actually met him. They crossed the ford Jabbok the night before they finally met Esau. It was this night that Jacob spent wrestling with an angel and was rewarded with a blessing. His name was changed from Jacob to Israel meaning a prince of God. Thus the first mention of eleven occurs on the night that Jacob receives revelation from God that he is to be known as a prince of God.

Jacobs's eleventh son was Joseph, who received in a dream a revelation that it would come to pass that, all his brethren and his parents would bow down to him. In due course he was sold into slavery in Egypt. There, God allowed him to reveal the meaning of dreams, firstly to pharaoh's baker and butler then to pharaoh himself. Thus in Israel's eleventh son the theme of revelation is clearly seen.

You might also note that this first occurrence of the number 11 is in verse 22 of Genesis 32. Now isn't that coincidental?

Books of the Bible

The Bible is Gods revelation to us as such we could expect eleven to figure strongly in its organization and construction. In fact the incidence of eleven in the overall organization of the Bible is probably the strongest evidence for the meaning of the number. Firstly note that the sum of the numbers from one to eleven is 66 (1 + 2 + 3 + 4 + 5 + 6 + 7 + 8 + 9 + 10 + 11 = 66). This is th number of books in the entire Bible. Thus the number eleven is intimately tied to the definitive work of revelation, the Word of God. Remember that six is the number of man, so six times eleven could represent a revelation unto man - the Bible. Consider, the following:


The number of books in the Bible is 66.

66 = 6x 11


The books are grouped into seven subdivisions, (law, history, prophets, gospels, Acts, epistles, Revelation) the two longest and the two shortest total 44 books.

44 = 4x 11


The two shortest divisions are Acts and Revelation. Acts is book 44.

44 = 4x 11


Revelation is book 66.

66 = 6x 11


The epistolary books total 33 (books that are letters or contain letters).

33 = 3x 11


These epistolary books are distributed so that in the first 44 books of the Bible (ending at Acts) there are 11. One could also say, there are 11 in the Old Testament.



The last 22 books are all epistolary.

22 = 2x 11


The number of anonymous books in the Bible is 22

22 = 2x 11


Of the non-anonymous books, 22 were written by authors who wrote more than one book.

22 = 2x 11


There are 22 books written as purely narrative. These are the law (Genesis to Deuteronomy - 5 books), the historical writings (Joshua to Esther - 12), the gospels (Matthew to John - 4) and Acts (1 book).

22 = 2x 11


There are 22 books of prophecy and wisdom. These are the wisdom writings (Job to Song of Solomon - 5 books), the major prophets (Isaiah to Daniel - 5 books), the minor prophets (Hosea to Malachi - 12 books).

22 = 2x 11


The books of the Bible are arranged so that the Law plus the Old Testament historical writings plus the wisdom literature are the first 22 books of the Bible.

22 = 2x 11


The wisdom literature plus the prophets total 22 books of the Bible. They are the last 22 books of the Old Testament.

22 = 2x 11


The prophets plus the historical writings of the New Testament are consecutive 22 books in the Bible.

22 = 2x 11


If the books are numbered from 1 to 66. The epistles have numbers 45 to 65. The sum of these numbers (order numbers) is 1155.

1155=105x 11


The sum of the rest of the order numbers (for all books but the epistles) is 1056.

1056 = 96x 11


The sum of the order numbers of the first and last book of the 21 epistles is 45 + 65 =110

110 = 10x 11


The middle epistle has the order number 55.

55 = 5x 11


First and second Corinthians were written to the church at Corinth, first and second Thessalonians to the church at Thessalonica, Philemon was written to Philemon, Apphia and the church in thy house, 3 John the author also wrote to the church. NB. We rule out Galatians, which was written not to one specific church but to the churches throughout Galatia. The order numbers of these epistles written to specific churches is 46,47,52,53,57,64, which total 319.

319 = 29x 11


The last two in the above list, written to individuals and their church have order numbers, 57 and 64, which totals 121.

121 = 11x 11


The other four in the list, written only to specific churches have order numbers that total 198.

198 = 18x 11


If we take the order numbers of the first books in the following divisions, law - genesis - book 1, history - Joshua - book 6, prophets - Psalms - book 19 (the same divisions mentioned in feature 2), gospels - Matthew - book 40. The total is 66. We stop at the gospels because Acts is the first book after the New Testament comes into effect.

66 = 6x 11


The sum of the order numbers for the first and last books in each of the three great sections in the Old Testament is 1+5+6+18+19+39 = 88.

88 = 8x 11


There are seven writers of the Old Testament mentioned as such in the New. Their names appear in the Bible in the following number of books. Moses - 31, David - 28, Isaiah - 12, Jeremiah - 8, Daniel - 6, Hosea - 7 and Joel - 7 for a total of 99.

99 = 9x 11


The name of Moses occurs in the Bible 847 times in the original Greek and Hebrew

847 = 77x 11


The name of Moses occurs 22 times in the epistles.

22 = 2x 11


The epistle that contains Moses name most often is Hebrews, in which it occurs exactly 11 times.


Isaac and Ishmael

These two are often cited as 'types' of the New Testament and the Old. They are often used to show us the contrast between God's people and those that are not. If they are truely ment to be examples to us, meant to teach us something, should we find some elevens?

The numeric value of Isaac is 198 = 18x 11.

The numeric value of Ishmael is 451 = 41x 11.

The Stars Declare Gods Handiwork

1 The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament sheweth his handywork. 2Day unto day uttereth speech, and night unto night sheweth knowledge. 3There is no speech nor language, where their voice is not heard. 4Their line is gone out through all the earth, and their words to the end of the world. In them hath he set a tabernacle for the sun,

Psalm 19:1-4

The one Hebrew word and three Greek words that mean star appear a total of 66 times in the Bible. Not only is this a multiple of 11 but it is the same number as the number of books in the Bible. Thus indicating that the stars declare the same overall message that the Bible does.

Words that appear in the Bible 11 Times

The Greek word (proskarterev) proskartereo { pros-kar-ter-ehí-o} meaning adhere to, be devoted or constant to, to be steadfastly attentive unto, to give unremitting care unto. It is instructive to look at where this word is used. Note that it is used twice in Acts 10:7, making a total of 11 times.

And he spake to his disciples, that a small ship should wait on him because of the multitude, lest they should throng him.

Mark 3:9

These all continued with one accord in prayer and supplication, with the women, and Mary the mother of Jesus, and with his brethren.

Acts 1:14

And they continued stedfastly in the apostlesí doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers.

Acts 2:42

And they, continuing daily with one accord in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, did eat their meat with gladness and singleness of heart,

Acts 2:46

But we will give ourselves continually to prayer, and to the ministry of the word.

Acts 6:4

Then Simon himself believed also: and when he was baptized, he continued with Philip, and wondered, beholding the miracles and signs which were done.

Acts 8:13

And when the angel which spake unto Cornelius was departed, he called two of his household servants, and a devout soldier of them that waited on him continually;

Acts 10:7

Rejoicing in hope; patient in tribulation; continuing instant in prayer;

Romans 12:12

For for this cause pay ye tribute also: for they are Godís ministers, attending continually upon this very thing.

Romans 13:6

Continue in prayer, and watch in the same with thanksgiving;

Colossians 4:2

Jesus used this word once in speaking to his disciples. Four times this word is used to speak of adhering to or being devoted to prayer. Three times it is used of those continuing in or with fellowship after receiving the Holy Spirit. It is used the twice in one verse to speak of the servants of Cornelius. It is used once to speak of authorities who should attend to their ministry of service. In particular, this is the word used of the apostles and the rest of the 120 who waited in Jerusalem for power from on high. Jesus had told them to wait until they were endued with this power, and so we are told that they, gave unremitting care to doing exactly that. Then after they received that power, the Holy Spirit, they gave unremitting care to continue in the doctrine and fellowship of the apostles. The fact that this word is used a total of eleven times stamps it with the theme or thought of revelation. Thus we are shown that not only would the disciples receive power from on high but revelation. Indeed without the Holy Spirit we cannot understand the things of God, so the Holy Spirit must indeed bring us a revealing or revelation of God's word. Indeed as Jesus said:

25These things have I spoken unto you, being yet present with you. 26But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.

John 14:25-26

Where to go from here

The symbolism of the number twelve.

Symbolic meanings of the numbers.

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