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Bridgeway Bible Dictionary


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When God told the people of Israel through Moses that they were to bind his laws upon their hands and between their eyes, he was no doubt emphasizing that his people were to live in the constant remembrance of his law. Not only their actions but also their thoughts were to be governed by the law of God (Exodus 13:9; Exodus 13:16; Deuteronomy 6:8; Deuteronomy 11:18).


Taking God’s instructions literally, Israelites of later times wrote selected commands of the law on small strips of cloth or parchment, placed these strips in small leather boxes called phylacteries, and bound the phylacteries on to their arms or foreheads. Jesus condemned those Pharisees and scribes who wore extra large phylacteries to try to impress people with their apparent devotion to God (Matthew 23:5).

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These files are public domain.
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Bibliography Information
Fleming, Don. Entry for 'Phylacteries'. Bridgeway Bible Dictionary. 2004.

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