The Hebrew alephbet is made up of 22 consonants: Aleph, Bet, Gimmel, Dalet, Hey, Vav, Zayin, Chet, Tet, Yod, Kaph, Lamed, Mem, Nun, Samekh, Ayin, Peh, Tsaddi, Qof, Resh, Shin and Tav (reading from right to left)
Every letter carries in it a meaning, and since every letter has a meaning, words made up of the letters carry the meanings of the individual letters into a word.
In each symbol, representing a letter of the alephbet, is a picture. The letters, with their intrinsic meanings make up the words in the Hebrew language. It is possible, then, by learning the ancient meanings of the letters themselves, to understand the meanings of words by the combinations of the letters. Through Hebrew letters the story of God’s purpose for mankind and instructions for life at its fullest unfold.
This is, perhaps, a difficult idea to grasp, since the letters that make up the English words we use have no meaning. That is to say, no letter has any meaning in and of itself — it is no more than a symbol representing a sound.
What does the letter “b” mean in English or French or Spanish? Nothing. Do words in English, French, Spanish or any language built on Greek, Latin or Indo-European roots that contain a letter “b” have a similarity in meaning? Hardly. Can you find a relationship in the meanings of bagel and bicycle just because each has the letter “b”? How about a boy and a banana? “B” means nothing. Nada. Zip. …and neither do any other letters of our alphabets.
The ancient pictures in the symbol are: teeth, devouring, power and peace. It seems an unlikely assortment. In the teeth, we see sharpness, in the literal sense, and words like horn and ivory, out of which cutting implements would have been made, contain the shin. In a figurative sense, we find words that “cut to the chase”, so to speak—words that are terse and have no wiggle room.
Seh - as in Seh ha'Elohiym
In this word, seh, the shin has the sound of s. The word means “lamb”. As John the Baptist saw Y'shua coming to the miqveh (pool) to be baptized, he exclaimed, as recorded in John 1:29 (NKJV): Behold! The Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world! He called our Lord by His name, Seh ha'Elohiym.
Four words that begin with shin are within verses 6-8 of Psalm 122.
6.Pray (sha-al'; shin-aleph-lamed) for the peace (shalom; shin-lamed-vav-mem) of Jerusalem: “May they prosper (sha-lav; shin-lamed-vav) who love you.
7. Peace (shalom) be within your walls, Prosperity (shal-vah; shin- lamed-vav-hey) within your palaces,”
8. For the sake of my brethren and companions, I will now say, “Peace (shalom) be within you.”
One of the saddest verses in the Bible is surely at Deut. 5:29 (NKJV), the Lord speaks to Moses and says, “Oh, that they had such a heart in them that they would fear Me (reverently respect my wisdom) and always keep all of my commandments that it might be well with them and with their children forever.
How the heart of ha’Shem, bless His holy name, must have grieved, as He looked into the future and saw the day when He must come Himself, through the sending of Mashiyach (Messiah; mem-shin chet) as His only begotten son, to be the sacrificial Lamb (seh) who would bear the sin of the world so that His lambs could be reunited with Him throughout eternity.
Let’s leave the shin with this revelation regarding the essence of the letter. I have read that when our jaws chomp down on a delectable morsel of steak, upwards of 900 pounds of pressure is exerted as we chew in order to pulverize the meat and get it ready to be broken down into the proteins and elements that will provide our nourishment.
This is the picture of the power of the sacrifice of the perfect lamb, Seh ha'Elohiym, to overcome the sin that separates ha'Shem from His children. Because of the Lamb, because of Messiah, when we embrace the truth of the need for a Redeemer and that Y'shua is indeed that Redeemer, then we are reconnected and enabled to live our lives to the full potential we were given at conception.
What the Hey Reveals is Astounding
Hey is the fifth letter of the Hebrew alephbet. The sound is like the “h” in hello, or hallelujah, a breathy “h”. The picture in the ancient symbol is of a window, a window that is opened to reveal what is within.
One of my favorite words in Hebrew is hinneh (hin-neh). Whenever you have read the words translated as Lo! Or Behold! In English script, the word translated was hinneh (hey-nun-hey).
It is found in words that speak of bringing forth, revealing, to show, and the concept of glory as the lavish abundance created by our God is impossible to hide and therefore, never can His glory be hidden.
The Hebrew Letters Shin and Hey, The Building Blocks of the Hebrew Word, Seh
The ancient glyph depicts a dwelling with an open door. Words beginning with or containing bet speak of building, house (home), and blessing
SHIN—sheen. The letter shin has two sounds, “s” as in sweet, and “sh” as in sheep. The pronunciation is determined by the placement of a dot at the top of the letter. A dot to the left indicates the “s” sound; and when it is to the top right, the “sh” sound.
The ancient glyph on the left depicts a tooth - a molar and the destroying power it has.
The ancient symbol depicts a little man with his arms upraised in surprise. The figure often reminds me of the father we read of in Y'shua's parable of the prodigal son. As he waited, watching, hoping for the son's return each day, can you not imagine that on that day he spied his son in the distance, that he threw up his arms in surprise, raised a shout and maybe even kept them raised to throw around the son's neck?
More accurate translations of the spirit in hinneh in modern vernacular might be: Whoa! Look at that!, Wow!
"Ha" is the definite article, “the”, denoting a specific, as in Y'shua ha'Mashiyach, Jesus the Messiah, and A-don ha'A-do-neem', ( the o's have the long vowel sound like the o in okay - ah-don ha-ahdo-neem), The Lord of Lords.
God unceasingly reveals His glorious creation. And He cannot hide His glory. Words containing hey frequently expound on His glory that is revealed all around us and, if we allow, within us. When Abram heard the voice of God and acted; that is, when ha'Shem, bless His holy name, commanded him and Abram obeyed because he believed (eh-met) God, then God changed his name to Abraham. God added glory to his name, because Abram had glorified God by his faith and obedience.
What, then, is the picture in the Hebrew word, Seh? It is not just any old lamb.
The lamb that a family would bring as offering to the temple had to be a lamb without blemish, perfect in form and without defect or disease. The lamb was chosen and raised by the children of a family, a pet, as it were. It was fed the best food and cherished as a blessing from ha'Shem--a blessing that when sacrificed back to its Maker, would then be multiplied to bless the entire family of God.
It is hard to imagine the pain of knowing the day was approaching when this precious pet would be delivered up as sacrifice. But what is a sacrifice if it does not cause pain? What immeasurable blessing may dwell within each of us if we were to sacrifice our will to the Father and allow Him to multiply His blessings through us via His power? The picture in the shin reveals to us that such sacrifice on our part will require an exertion, a deliberate self-destruction of our will.
When Adam and Eve sinned, The Creator Himself slaughtered a precious innocent lamb to cover the nakedness of the rebellious sinners, whom yet He loved. The life-blood spilled from the lamb and it would be the blood of a precious lamb that would ever be the only atonement--the covering for sin.
Always and forever, the Shin of Seh reveals through the Hey that it is the perfect lamb who is to the devourer of sin. Once and for all, The Creator Himself demanded and received the poured out blood of His perfect son to atone for the sins of all. We praise Him, because He is worthy of our praise--He alone is worthy of our praise, for by deliberately laying down His life, pouring out His blood, Y'shua, precious Seh ha'Elohiym, has purchased life, redeemed unto God His creation, you and me.
And that is worthy of a halleluyah! So, like the little man in the ancient symbol for the letter hey, take a clue from this Hebrew word that translates "praise you the Lord"...for hallel is the Hebrew word for praise and it begins with the letter hey.
The ancient symbol depicts a little man with his arms upraised in surprise, wonder or awe
"...a Christian all my life, it was not until I saw and could release the forces hidden within the Hebrew letters that I truly began to grasp the scope of God's love for us or the true nature of our Redeemer"
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This is where Hebrew differs. The ancient script preceding the square Babylonian script adopted by Ezra the Scribe with which most of us are familiar, evolved from even more ancient paleo-hebraic pictographs. Each glyph that represented a sound also represented a concept. Those concepts have never become disassociated from the letters.
That may seem like a strange way of putting the usage of a letter in the composition of a word-to dwell. But, as you discover the association of the letters of the alephbet, one with another, to reveal everything that is, was and will be, you’ll find the alephbet is a living thing.
Pictures in the Hebrew Letter Shin
Consider the Hebrew letter “bet”, the second letter of the alephbet. In the letter itself is a picture of a house. As a picture, everything associated with that picture is within the character of the letter, and carries through into words in which it dwells.