Palace - Used now only of royal dwellings, although originally meaning simply (as the Latin word palatium, from which it is derived, shows) a building surrounded by a fence or a paling. In the Authorized Version there are many different words so rendered, presenting different ideas, such as that of citadel or lofty fortress or royal residence ( Neh. 1:1; Dan. 8:2). It is the name given to the temple fortress ( Neh. 2:8) and to the temple itself (1 Chr. 29:1). It denotes also a spacious building or a great house ( Dan. 1:4;Dan 4:4,Dan. 1:29:Esther 1:5;Esther 7:7), and a fortified place or an enclosure ( Ezek. 25:4). Solomon's palace is described in 1 Kings 7:1-12 as a series of buildings rather than a single great structure. Thirteen years were spent in their erection. This palace stood on the eastern hill, adjoining the temple on the south.
In the New Testament it designates the official residence of Pilate or that of the high priest ( Matt. 26:3,Matt. 26:58,Matt. 26:69; Mark 14:54, Mark 14:66; John 18:15). In Phil. 1:13 this word is the rendering of the Greek praitorion, meaning the praetorian cohorts at Rome (the life-guard of the Caesars). Paul was continually chained to a soldier of that corps ( Acts 28:16), and hence his name and sufferings became known in all the praetorium. The "soldiers that kept" him would, on relieving one another on guard, naturally spread the tidings regarding him among their comrades. Some, however, regard the praetroium (q.v.) as the barrack within the palace (the palatium) of the Caesars in Rome where a detachment of these praetorian guards was stationed, or as the camp of the guards placed outside the eastern walls of Rome.
"In the chambers which were occupied as guard-rooms," says Dr. Manning, "by the praetorian troops on duty in the palace, a number of rude caricatures are found roughly scratched upon the walls, just such as may be seen upon barrack walls in every part of the world. Amongst these is one of a human figure nailed upon a cross. To add to the 'offence of the cross,' the crucified one is represented with the head of an animal, probably that of an ass. Before it stands the figure of a Roman legionary with one hand upraised in the attitude of worship. Underneath is the rude, misspelt, ungrammatical inscription, Alexamenos worships his god. It can scarcely be doubted that we have here a contemporary caricature, executed by one of the praetorian guard, ridiculing the faith of a Christian comrade."
Palestine - originally denoted only the sea-coast of the land of Canaan inhabited by the Philistines ( Ex. 15:14; Isa. 14:29, Isa. 14:31; Joel 3:4), and in this sense exclusively the Hebrew name Pelesheth (rendered "Philistia" in Ps. 60:8; Ps 83:7; Ps 87:4; Ps 108:9) occurs in the Old Testament.
Not till a late period in Jewish history was this name used to denote "the land of the Hebrews" in general ( Gen. 40:15). It is also called "the holy land" ( Zech. 2:12), the "land of Jehovah" ( Hos. 9:3; Ps. 85:1), the "land of promise" ( Heb. 11:9), because promised to Abraham ( Gen. 12:7;Gen 24:7), the "land of Canaan" ( Gen. 12:5), the "land of Israel" (1 Sam. 13:19), and the "land of Judah" ( Isa. 19:17).
The territory promised as an inheritance to the seed of Abraham ( Gen. 15:18-21; Num. 34:1-12) was bounded on the east by the river Euphrates, on the west by the Mediterranean, on the north by the "entrance of Hamath," and on the south by the "river of Egypt." This extent of territory, about 60,000 square miles, was at length conquered by David, and was ruled over also by his son Solomon (2 Sam. 8; 1 Chr. 18; 1 Kings 4:1,1 Kings 4:21). This vast empire was the Promised Land; but Palestine was only a part of it, terminating in the north at the southern extremity of the Lebanon range, and in the south in the wilderness of Paran, thus extending in all to about 144 miles in length. Its average breadth was about 60 miles from the Mediterranean on the west to beyond the Jordan. It has fittingly been designated "the least of all lands." Western Palestine, on the south of Gaza, is only about 40 miles in breadth from the Mediterranean to the Dead Sea, narrowing gradually toward the north, where it is only 20 miles from the sea-coast to the Jordan.
Palestine, "set in the midst" ( Ezek. 5:5) of all other lands, is the most remarkable country on the face of the earth. No single country of such an extent has so great a variety of climate, and hence also of plant and animal life. Moses describes it as "a good land, a land of brooks of water, of fountains and depths that spring out of valleys and hills; a land of wheat, and barley, and vines, and fig trees, and pomegranates; a land of oil olive, and honey; a land wherein thou shalt not eat bread without scarceness, thou shalt not lack any thing in it; a land whose stones are iron, and out of whose hills thou mayest dig brass" ( Deut. 8:7-9).
"In the time of Christ the country looked, in all probability, much as now. The whole land consists of rounded limestone hills, fretted into countless stony valleys, offering but rarely level tracts, of which Esdraelon alone, below Nazareth, is large enough to be seen on the map. The original woods had for ages disappeared, though the slopes were dotted, as now, with figs, olives, and other fruit-trees where there was any soil. Permanent streams were even then unknown, the passing rush of winter torrents being all that was seen among the hills. The autumn and spring rains, caught in deep cisterns hewn out like huge underground jars in the soft limestone, with artificial mud-banked ponds still found near all villages, furnished water. Hills now bare, or at best rough with stunted growth, were then terraced, so as to grow vines, olives, and grain. To-day almost desolate, the country then teemed with population. Wine-presses cut in the rocks, endless terraces, and the ruins of old vineyard towers are now found amidst solitudes overgrown for ages with thorns and thistles, or with wild shrubs and poor gnarled scrub" (Geikie's Life of Christ).
From an early period the land was inhabited by the descendants of Canaan, who retained possession of the whole land "from Sidon to Gaza" till the time of the conquest by Joshua, when it was occupied by the twelve tribes. Two tribes and a half had their allotments given them by Moses on the east of the Jordan ( Deut. 3:12-20; comp. Num. 1:17-46; Josh. 4:12-13). The remaining tribes had their portion on the west of Jordan.
From the conquest till the time of Saul, about four hundred years, the people were governed by judges. For a period of one hundred and twenty years the kingdom retained its unity while it was ruled by Saul and David and Solomon. On the death of Solomon, his son Rehoboam ascended the throne; but his conduct was such that ten of the tribes revolted, and formed an independent monarchy, called the kingdom of Israel, or the northern kingdom, the capital of which was first Shechem and afterwards Samaria. This kingdom was destroyed. The Israelites were carried captive by Shalmanezer, king of Assyria, B.C. 722, after an independent existence of two hundred and fifty-three years. The place of the captives carried away was supplied by tribes brought from the east, and thus was formed the Samaritan nation (2 Kings 17:24-29).
Nebuchadnezzar came up against the kingdom of the two tribes, the kingdom of Judah, the capital of which was Jerusalem, one hundred and thirty-four years after the overthrow of the kingdom of Israel. He overthrew the city, plundered the temple, and carried the people into captivity to Babylon (B.C. 587), where they remained seventy years. At the close of the period of the Captivity, they returned to their own land, under the edict of Cyrus ( Ezra 1:1-4). They rebuilt the city and temple, and restored the old Jewish commonwealth.
For a while after the Restoration the Jews were ruled by Zerubbabel, Ezra, and Nehemiah, and afterwards by the high priests, assisted by the Sanhedrin. After the death of Alexander the Great at Babylon (B.C. 323), his vast empire was divided between his four generals. Egypt, Arabia, Palestine, and Coele-Syria fell to the lot of Ptolemy Lagus. Ptolemy took possession of Palestine in B.C. 320, and carried nearly one hundred thousand of the inhabitants of Jerusalem into Egypt. He made Alexandria the capital of his kingdom, and treated the Jews with consideration, confirming them in the enjoyment of many privileges.
After suffering persecution at the hands of Ptolemy's successors, the Jews threw off the Egyptian yoke, and became subject to Antiochus the Great, the king of Syria. The cruelty and opression of the successors of Antiochus at length led to the revolt under the Maccabees (B.C. 163), when they threw off the Syrian yoke.
In the year B.C. 68, Palestine was reduced by Pompey the Great to a Roman province. He laid the walls of the city in ruins, and massacred some twelve thousand of the inhabitants. He left the temple, however, unijured. About twenty-five years after this the Jews revolted and cast off the Roman yoke. They were however, subdued by Herod the Great (q.v.). The city and the temple were destroyed, and many of the inhabitants were put to death. About B.C. 20, Herod proceeded to rebuild the city and restore the ruined temple, which in about nine years and a half was so far completed that the sacred services could be resumed in it (comp. John 2:20). He was succeeded by his son Archelaus, who was deprived of his power, however, by Augustus, A.D. 6, when Palestine became a Roman province, ruled by Roman governors or procurators. Pontius Pilate was the fifth of these procurators. He was appointed to his office A.D. 25.
Exclusive of Idumea, the kingdom of Herod the Great comprehended the whole of the country originally divided among the twelve tribes, which he divided into four provinces or districts. This division was recognized so long as Palestine was under the Roman dominion. These four provinces were, (1) Judea, the southern portion of the country; (2) Samaria, the middle province, the northern boundary of which ran along the hills to the south of the plain of Esdraelon; (3) Galilee, the northern province; and (4) Peraea (a Greek name meaning the "opposite country"), the country lying east of the Jordan and the Dead Sea. This province was subdivided into these districts, (1) Peraea proper, lying between the rivers Arnon and Jabbok; (2) Galaaditis (Gilead); (3) Batanaea; (4) Gaulonitis (Jaulan); (5) Ituraea or Auranitis, the ancient Bashan; (6) Trachonitis; (7) Abilene; (8) Decapolis, i.e., the region of the ten cities. The whole territory of Palestine, including the portions alloted to the trans-Jordan tribes, extended to about eleven thousand square miles. Recent exploration has shown the territory on the west of Jordan alone to be six thousand square miles in extent, the size of the principality of Wales.
Pallu - separated, the second son of Reuben (1 Chr. 5:3); called Phallu, Gen. 46:9. He was the father of the Phalluites ( Ex. 6:14; Num. 26:5, Num. 26:8).
Palmer-worm - (Heb. gazam). The English word may denote either a caterpillar (as rendered by the LXX.), which wanders like a palmer or pilgrim, or which travels like pilgrims in bands ( Joel 1:4;Joel 2:25), the wingless locusts, or the migratory locust in its larva state.
Palm tree - (Heb. tamar), the date-palm characteristic of Palestine. It is described as "flourishing" ( Ps. 92:12), tall ( Cant. 7:7), "upright" ( Jer. 10:5). Its branches are a symbol of victory ( Rev. 7:9). "Rising with slender stem 40 or 50, at times even 80, feet aloft, its only branches, the feathery, snow-like, pale-green fronds from 6 to 12 feet long, bending from its top, the palm attracts the eye wherever it is seen." The whole land of Palestine was called by the Greeks and Romans Phoenicia, i.e., "the land of palms." Tadmor in the desert was called by the Greeks and Romans Palmyra, i.e., "the city of palms." The finest specimens of this tree grew at Jericho ( Deut. 34:3) and Engedi and along the banks of the Jordan. Branches of the palm tree were carried at the feast of Tabernacles ( Lev. 23:40). At our Lord's triumphal entrance into Jerusalem the crowds took palm branches, and went forth to meet him, crying, "Hosanna: Blessed is the King of Israel that cometh in the name of the Lord" (Matt. 21:8; John 12:13). (See DATE.)
Palm trees, The city of - the name given to Jericho (q.v.), Deut. 34:3; Judg. 1:16; Judg 3:13.
Palsy - a shorter form of "paralysis." Many persons thus afflicted were cured by our Lord ( Matt. 4:24;Matt 8:5-13;Matt 9:2-7; Mark 2:3-11; Luke 7:2-10; John 5:5-7) and the apostles ( Acts 8:7;Acts 9:33,Acts 8:34).
Palti - deliverance from the Lord, one of the spies representing the tribe of Benjamin ( Num. 13:9).
Paltiel - deliverance of God, the prince of Issachar who assisted "to divide the land by inheritance" ( Num. 34:26).
Paltite - the designation of one of David's heroes (2 Sam. 23:26); called also the Pelonite (1 Chr. 11:27).
Pamphylia - Paul and his company, loosing from Paphos, sailed north-west and came to Perga, the capital of Pamphylia ( Acts 13:13,Acts 13:14), a province about the middle of the southern sea-board of Asia Minor. It lay between Lycia on the west and Cilicia on the east. There were strangers from Pamphylia at Jerusalem on the day of Pentecost ( Acts 2:10).
Pan - a vessel of metal or earthenware used in culinary operations; a cooking-pan or frying-pan frequently referred to in the Old Testament ( Lev. 2:5;Lev 6:21; Num. 11:8; 1 Sam. 2:14, etc.).
The "ash-pans" mentioned in Ex. 27:3 were made of copper, and were used in connection with the altar of burnt-offering. The "iron pan" mentioned in Ezek. 4:3 (marg., "flat plate " or "slice") was probably a mere plate of iron used for baking. The "fire-pans" of Ex. 27:3 were fire-shovels used for taking up coals. The same Hebrew word is rendered "snuff-dishes" Ex 25:38; Ex 37:23) and "censers" ( Lev. 10:1;Lev 16:12; Num. 4:14, etc.). These were probably simply metal vessels employed for carrying burning embers from the brazen altar to the altar of incense.
The "frying-pan" mentioned in Lev. 2:7; Lev 7:9was a pot for boiling.
Pannag - ( Ezek. 27:17; marg. R.V., "perhaps a kind of confection") the Jews explain as the name of a kind of sweet pastry. Others take it as the name of some place, identifying it with Pingi, on the road between Damascus and Baalbec. "Pannaga" is the Sanscrit name of an aromatic plant (comp. Gen. 43:11).
Paper - The expression in the Authorized Version ( Isa. 19:7), "the paper reeds by the brooks," is in the Revised Version more correctly "the meadows by the Nile." The words undoubtedly refer to a grassy place on the banks of the Nile fit for pasturage.
In 2 John 1:12 the word is used in its proper sense. The material so referred to was manufactured from the papyrus, and hence its name. The papyrus (Heb. gome) was a kind of bulrush (q.v.). It is mentioned by Job 2 John 8:11) and Isaiah 2 John 35:7). It was used for many purposes. This plant (Papyrus Nilotica) is now unknown in Egypt; no trace of it can be found. The unaccountable disappearance of this plant from Egypt was foretold by Isaiah 2 John 19:6,2 John 19:7) as a part of the divine judgment on that land. The most extensive papyrus growths now known are in the marshes at the northern end of the lake of Merom.
Paphos - the capital of the island of Cyprus, and therefore the residence of the Roman governor. It was visited by Paul and Barnabas on their first missionary tour ( Acts 13:6). It is new Paphos which is here meant. It lay on the west coast of the island, about 8 miles north of old Paphos. Its modern name is Baffa.
Parable - (Gr. parabole), a placing beside; a comparison; equivalent to the Heb. mashal, a similitude. In the Old Testament this is used to denote (1) a proverb (1 Sam. 10:12;1 Sam 24:13; 2 Chr. 7:20), (2) a prophetic utterance ( Num. 23:7; Ezek. 20:49), (3) an enigmatic saying ( Ps. 78:2; Prov. 1:6). In the New Testament, (1) a proverb ( Mark 7:17; Luke 4:23), (2) a typical emblem ( Heb. 9:9;Heb 11:19), (3) a similitude or allegory ( Matt. 15:15;Matt 24:32; Mark 3:23; Luke 5:36; Luke 14:7); (4) ordinarily, in a more restricted sense, a comparison of earthly with heavenly things, "an earthly story with a heavenly meaning," as in the parables of our Lord.
Instruction by parables has been in use from the earliest times. A large portion of our Lord's public teaching consisted of parables. He himself explains his reasons for this in his answer to the inquiry of the disciples, "Why speakest thou to them in parables?" ( Matt. 13:13-15; Mark 4:11, Mark 4:12; Luke 8:9, Luke 8:10). He followed in so doing the rule of the divine procedures, as recorded in Matt. 13:13.
The parables uttered by our Lord are all recorded in the synoptical (i.e., the first three) Gospels. The fourth Gospel contains no parable properly so called, although the illustration of the good shepherd ( John 10:1-16) has all the essential features of a parable. (See List of Parables in Appendix.)
Paradise - a Persian word (pardes), properly meaning a "pleasure-ground" or "park" or "king's garden." (See EDEN.) It came in course of time to be used as a name for the world of happiness and rest hereafter ( Luke 23:43; 2 Cor. 12:4; Rev. 2:7). For "garden" in Gen. 2:8 the LXX. has "paradise."
Parah - the heifer, a town in Benjamin ( Josh. 18:23), supposed to be identical with the ruins called Far'ah, about 6 miles north-east of Jerusalem, in the Wady Far'ah, which is a branch of the Wady Kelt.
Paran - abounding in foliage, or abounding in caverns, ( Gen. 21:21), a desert tract forming the north-eastern division of the peninsula of Sinai, lying between the 'Arabah on the east and the wilderness of Shur on the west. It is intersected in a north-western direction by the Wady el-'Arish. It bears the modern name of Badiet et-Tih, i.e., "the desert of the wanderings." This district, through which the children of Israel wandered, lay three days' march from Sinai ( Num. 10:12,Num. 10:33). From Kadesh, in this wilderness, spies (q.v.) were sent to spy the land ( Num 13:3,Num 13:26). Here, long afterwards, David found refuge from Saul (1 Sam. 25:1,1 Sam. 25:4).
Paran, Mount - probably the hilly region or upland wilderness on the north of the desert of Paran forming the southern boundary of the Promised Land ( Deut. 33:2; Hab. 3:3).
Parbar - (1 Chr. 26:18), a place apparently connected with the temple, probably a "suburb" (q.v.), as the word is rendered in 2 Kings 23:11; a space between the temple wall and the wall of the court; an open portico into which the chambers of the official persons opened (1 Chr. 26:18).
Parched ground - ( Isa. 35:7), Heb. sharab, a "mirage", a phenomenon caused by the refraction of the rays of the sun on the glowing sands of the desert, causing them suddenly to assume the appearance of a beautiful lake. It is called by the modern Arabs by the same Hebrew name serab.
Parchment - a skin prepared for writing on; so called from Pergamos (q.v.), where this was first done (2 Tim. 4:13).
Pardon - the forgiveness of sins granted freely ( Isa. 43:25), readily ( Neh. 9:17; Ps. 86:5), abundantly ( Isa. 55:7; Rom. 5:20). Pardon is an act of a sovereign, in pure sovereignty, granting simply a remission of the penalty due to sin, but securing neither honour nor reward to the pardoned. Justification (q.v.), on the other hand, is the act of a judge, and not of a sovereign, and includes pardon and, at the same time, a title to all the rewards and blessings promised in the covenant of life.