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Bible Dictionaries

People's Dictionary of the Bible


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Gate. Eastern cities anciently were walled and had gates. They are thus sometimes taken as representing the city itself. Genesis 22:17; Genesis 24:60; Deuteronomy 12:12; Judges 5:8; Ruth 4:10; Psalms 87:2; Psalms 122:2. Gateways were used:(1) As places of public resort. Genesis 19:1; Genesis 23:10; Genesis 34:20; Genesis 34:24; 1 Samuel 4:18, etc. (2) For public deliberation, holding. courts of justice, or for meeting kings and rulers or ambassadors. Deuteronomy 16:18; Deuteronomy 21:19; Deuteronomy 25:7; Joshua 20:4; Judges 9:35, etc. (3) Public markets. 2 Kings 7:1. In heathen towns the open spaces near the gates appear to have been sometimes used as places for sacrifice. Acts 14:13; comp. 2 Kings 23:8. The gates of cities were carefully guarded, and closed at nightfall. Deuteronomy 3:5; Joshua 2:5; Joshua 2:7; Judges 9:40; Judges 9:44. They contained chambers over the gateway. 2 Samuel 18:24. The doors of the larger gates mentioned in Scripture were two-leaved, plated with metal, closed with locks and barred with metal bars. Deuteronomy 3:5; Psalms 107:16; Isaiah 45:1-2. Gates not covered by iron were liable to be set on fire by an enemy. Judges 9:52. The gateways of royal palaces and even of private houses were often richly ornamented. Sentences from the law were inscribed on and above the gates. Deuteronomy 6:9; Revelation 21:21. The gates of Solomon's temple were very massive and costly, being overlaid with gold and carvings. 1 Kings 6:34-35; 2 Kings 18:16. Those of the holy place were of olive wood, two-leaved and overlaid with gold; those of the temple of fir. 1 Kings 6:31-32; 1 Kings 6:34; Ezekiel 41:23-24.

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These files are public domain.
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Bibliography Information
Rice, Edwin Wilbur, DD. Entry for 'Gate'. People's Dictionary of the Bible. 1893.

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