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Bible Dictionaries

Holman Bible Dictionary


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Hard bony structures in the jaws of persons and animals used to cut and grind food. In Old Testament thinking, the loss of a tooth was a serious matter subject to the law of retaliation (Exodus 21:23-25; Leviticus 24:19-20; Deuteronomy 19:21; compare Matthew 5:38-42 ). Teeth set on edge, that is made dull or insensitive, illustrates the concept of corporate or inherited guilt challenged by the prophets (Jeremiah 31:29-30; Ezekiel 18:2-3 ). Gnashing of teeth displays the raging despair of those excluded from Christ's kingdom (Matthew 8:12; Matthew 13:42 ).

Copyright Statement
These dictionary topics are from the Holman Bible Dictionary, published by Broadman & Holman, 1991. All rights reserved. Used by permission of Broadman & Holman.

Bibliography Information
Butler, Trent C. Editor. Entry for 'Teeth'. Holman Bible Dictionary. 1991.

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