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Bible Dictionaries

Fausset's Bible Dictionary

Dog

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The watch of the house, and of the flock (Isaiah 56:10-11; Job 30:1). Sometimes domesticated, as the Syrophoenician woman's comparison and argument imply, "the household (kunaria , 'little' or 'pet') dogs eat of the crumbs (Matthew 15:26-27; Mark 7:27-28) which fall from their master's table." More commonly ownerless, and banded in troops which divide cities into so many quarters; each half-starved, ravenous troop keeps to its own quarter, and drives off any intruder; feeding on blood, dead bodies, and offal; therefore regarded as "unclean" (1 Kings 14:11; 1 Kings 16:4; 1 Kings 21:19; 1 Kings 21:23; 1 Kings 22:38; 2 Kings 9:10; 2 Kings 9:35-36). Their dismal howlings at night are alluded to in Psalms 59:6; Psalms 59:14-15; "they return at evening, they make a noise like a dog, and go round about the city"; perhaps in allusion to Saul's agents thirsting for David's blood coming to Michal's house at evening, and to the retribution on Saul in kind, when he who had made David a wanderer himself wandered about seeking vainly for help against the Philistines, and went at last by night to the witch of Endor. As unclean (Isaiah 66:3), dog, dead dog, dog's head, are terms of scorn or else self-abasement (1 Samuel 24:14; 2 Samuel 3:8; 2 Samuel 9:8; 2 Samuel 16:9; 2 Kings 8:13). A wanton, self-prostituting man is called a "dog" (Deuteronomy 23:18). One Egyptian god had a dog form. "Beware of the (Greek) dogs," those impure persons of whom I told you often" (Philippians 3:2; Philippians 3:18-19); "the abominable" (Revelation 21:8; compare Revelation 22:15; Matthew 7:6); pagan in spirit (Titus 1:15-16); dogs in filthiness, snarling, and ferocity against the Lord and His people (Psalms 22:16; Psalms 22:20); backsliding into former carnality, as the dog "is turned to his own vomit again" (2 Peter 2:22). The Jews regarded the Gentiles as "dogs," but by unbelief they ceased to be the true Israel and themselves became dogs (Isaiah 56:10-11). "Deliver my darling from the power of the dog," i.e. my soul (literally, my unique one, unique in its preciousness) from the Jewish rabble; as "deliver My soul from the sword" is Messiah's cry for deliverance from the Roman soldiery and governor. The Assyrian hunting dog as vividly depicted on Assyrian sculptures resembled exactly our harrier or foxhound.

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These files are public domain.

Bibliography Information
Fausset, Andrew R. Entry for 'Dog'. Fausset's Bible Dictionary. https://www.studylight.org/dictionaries/eng/fbd/d/dog.html. 1949.

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