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Bible Encyclopedias

International Standard Bible Encyclopedia


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rich´ez , rich´iz : Used to render the following Hebrew and Greek words: (1) ‛Ōsher , which should, perhaps, be considered the most general word, as it is the most often used ( Genesis 31:16 ; Ecclesiastes 4:8 ; Jeremiah 9:23 ). It looks at riches simply as riches, without regard to any particular feature. Alongside this would go the Greek πλοῦτος , ploútos (Matthew 13:22 ; Ephesians 2:7 ). (2) Ḥōṣen (Proverbs 27:24 ; Jeremiah 20:5 ), nekhāṣı̄m and rekhūsh (Genesis 36:7 ; Daniel 11:13 , Daniel 11:14 the King James Version) look at riches as things accumulated, collected, amassed. (3) Hōn looks upon riches as earnings, the fruit of toil (Psalm 119:14 ; Proverbs 8:18 ; Ezekiel 27:27 ). (4) Hāmōn regards riches in the aspect of being much, this coming from the original idea of noise, through the idea of a multitude as making the noise, the idea of many, or much, being in multitude (Psalm 37:16 the King James Version). (5) Ḥayil regards riches as power (Psalm 62:1-12 :19; Isaiah 8:4 ; Isaiah 10:14 ). (6) Yithrāh means "running over," and so presents riches as abundance (Jeremiah 48:36 the King James Version). Along with this may be placed shūa‛ , which has the idea of breadth, and so of abundance (Job 36:19 the King James Version). (7) Ḳinyān regards riches as a creation, something made (Psalm 104:24 ; compare margin); (8) (χρῆμα , chrḗma ) looks at riches as useful (Mark 10:23 f parallel). Like the New Testament, the Apoe uses only ploutos and chrēma .

Material riches are regarded by the Scriptures as neither good nor bad in themselves, but only according as they are properly or improperly used. They are transitory (Proverbs 27:24 ); they are not to be trusted in (Mark 10:23 ; Luke 18:24 ; 1 Timothy 6:17 ); they are not to be gloried in (Jeremiah 9:23 ); the heart is not to be set on them (Psalm 62:10 ); but they are made by God (Psalm 104:24 ), and come from God (1 Chronicles 29:12 ); and they are the crown of the wise (Proverbs 14:24 ). Material riches are used to body forth for us the most precious and glorious realities of the spiritual realm. See, e.g., Romans 9:23 ; Romans 11:33 ; Ephesians 2:7 ; Philippians 4:19 ; Colossians 1:27 . Compare MAMMON ; TREASURE ; WEALTH .

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Bibliography Information
Orr, James, M.A., D.D. General Editor. Entry for 'Riches'. International Standard Bible Encyclopedia. 1915.

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