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Silver Bracelets - Ancient Jewish Bridal Attire

Updated on September 8, 2013
Marilynn Dawson profile image

Born-again Christian single mother of two grown kids. PC Tech, and Author of 18+ books in the non-fiction, personal/spiritual growth genres

Silver bullion bar 1000oz bottom view / view from underneath
Silver bullion bar 1000oz bottom view / view from underneath | Source

Bracelets in the Dowry

Bracelets are mentioned following the over-arcing term "adornments" in Ezekiel 16. While it is hard to find archeological and historical examples of this. Scripture references the giving of bracelets by suitors several times between Genesis and Ezekiel. Judging from these passages, it was a common practice to include them in a suitor's proposed dowry.

According to Yemenite Jewish history, the bracelets of the bridal attire were made out of silver, and were worn in matching sets. One source I glanced past stated that such bracelets would not only be worn in pairs, but three pairs would be worn between the wrist and the elbow for the wedding day.

Ezekiel, a few verses later, mentions both silver and gold in the adorning of Jerusalem. The discussion of gold was already covered at link to the right here: So as our bracelets are the first mention of silver, we will discuss silver next.

Native silver
Native silver | Source

Make-up and Characteristics

Similar to gold, silver is a very malleable, ductile metal, but unlike gold, is even more conductive of electricity that copper. The only reason it hasn't been used in place of copper on a wider scale, is cost. Very much like gold, silver is also considered a precious metal and used in both currency and jewelry down through the ages. Silver, while offering a very high polish, tends to tarnish over time as it comes into contact with elements in the atmosphere. This tendency to tarnish has resulted in many silversmiths coming up with protective finishes to prevent such unsightly tarnish. Silver polishes have been sold in stores for many years to keep silverware from colouring and eventually going black.

Refining silver has taken on various forms over the millenia, but only since the industrial age has the method of nitric acid been used as one of the methods. Many modern methods still use smelting furnaces, some as small as the one in the video shared here. A pdf linked here as well, shows one person's attempt to smelt silver in a manner similar to those done during the Middle Ages.

This author's searches for the origins of a silversmith's smelting story as told by a group of women in a Bible study, have failed to unveil the source. However God does say in Malachi, that He "will sit as a refiner of silver" until His people reflect the image of their God.

One of the steps involved in smelting silver, is the fluxing step. This step can take various forms, but the end result is the skimming of the dross from the surface of the silver, until the smithy in ancient times could see his reflection. At that point, the silver was said to be pure.

The bracelet is made of two equal halves, and has three serrated halfglobules on each side. The decoration combines spirals and circles; a triple bead-molded band frames the décor.  Inside of the bracelet is an engraved inscription in Hebrew, which
The bracelet is made of two equal halves, and has three serrated halfglobules on each side. The decoration combines spirals and circles; a triple bead-molded band frames the décor. Inside of the bracelet is an engraved inscription in Hebrew, which | Source

What this means for the Bride of Christ

The implications of this refining process for the Bride of Christ are clear. Whether we discuss gold, or silver, the refining process is one of very hot temperatures, dross or impurities being skimmed off the top, and the smelter going through the process as many times as necessary to bring forth a metal worthy of the use to which it will be put.

Many times, the Christian life is painted to be all roses and bliss, but in reality, has it's moments of fire and tribulation! This is not always because of those out to attack those in the faith, natural disasters striking out of nowhere, or unwanted deaths in the family. If those seem like haphazard events in the life of the Christian, then they have missed out on the opportunity for God to use those events to refine them, to shape them, to cleanse them, and to form them into the vessels of honour He desires. The Apostle Paul admonishes the church not to think it strange when fiery trials assail them, but to count it all joy that they may become more like Christ.

The silver given to the Bride of Christ has gone through such a refining process. God is pleased with His reflection and with the purity of her nature. She is to wear her purity as part of her dowry, displaying to the world that she is set apart from the sinful impurities and dross of the ways around her.

Today we covered bracelets

Specifically given as special outfit
broidered work
'badger''s skin'
fine linen

© 2013 Marilynn Dawson


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