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Trust—A Hebrew Word Study
This lesson will look at one of the Hebrew words for "trust" from a pictograph perspective that will hopefully lead to a deeper understanding of what it really means to trust in God as He asks to do. Trusting Him is foundational to our faith and believing. So let's take a look at this word's picture concepts and see what we can glean.
Before we begin, just a brief description of a Hebrew word pictograph is that this ancient language's letters were once expressed by images that helped form solid unchangeable concepts that would assist in word comprehension as well as application. The ancient's were not only interested in knowing things they were more concerned with a word's function and purpose as it applied to life, as it should be with us.
be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves
— James 1:22
May we, like the ancients of old, not just be interested in learning something new, like the Athenians in Acts, but more deeply understand God's truth that we may better live out these beautiful revelations.
For all the Athenians and the foreigners who were there spent their time in nothing else but either to tell or to hear some new thing
— Acts 17:21
Gesenius' Hebrew Lexicon defines trust as to set one's hope and confidence upon, to be secure fearing nothing and is also translated as confidence, security, and hope.
In Hebrew the word for "trust" is b'tach. It is spelled with the Hebrew letters bet, tet, and, a chet.
A bet, the first letter of the Hebrew word for trust, is a picture of tent, home or family and speaks of being inside, abiding and rest. When speaking of trust, "in" is frequently added to it.
For our heart shall rejoice in Him, Because we have trusted in His holy name.
— Psalm 33:21
A home and family are places that can and should be associated with safety, security, trust, and rest. Trust is about being on the inside.
Being "in" covenant with God through His Son Jesus is about being in His family.
...we should not trust in ourselves but in God who raises the dead, who delivered us from so great a death, and does deliver us; in whom we trust that He will still deliver us
— II Corinthians 1:9
In Him you also trusted, after you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation; in whom also, having believed, you were sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise
— Ephesians 1:13
The Gospel of John contains many references to "in Him", more than any of the other gospels. According to Steven Coxhead on his website Berith Road, The gospel of John records that "Rebirth by the Spirit is necessary for entering "into" the kingdom of God (John 3:5), and for experiencing eternal life and immortality (John 3:6). In the new covenant age"
Whoever confesses that Jesus is the Son of God, God abides in him, and he in God.
— I John 4:15
There is no security or trust outside of Him. In Him, there is nothing to fear.
The second letter of the Hebrew word for trust is a tet and it is a picture of something coiled like a snake or I have also read it can be like a basket When making a basket the fibers are wrapped and coiled around in the weaving process. I think of how a baby loves to be swaddled and wrapped tightly in a blanket. It seems to be soothing to babies to be wrapped in this way. To be unswaddled biblically was a likened to abandonment.
As for your nativity, on the day you were born your navel cord was not cut, nor were you washed in water to cleanse you; you were not rubbed with salt nor wrapped in swaddling cloths.
— Ezekiel 16:4
It can also represent distinguishing what is good, as the reference to the snake would exhibit, in that a snake has a dual forked tongue that it tastes the atmosphere around it with. The letter "tet" is the first letter in the Hebrew word for good
Oh, taste and see that the LORD is good; Blessed is the man who trusts in Him!
— Psalm 34:8
Trust is to Distinguish that He is good and to be wrapped and swaddled in the goodness of His everlasting arms
The eternal God is your refuge (place of trust), And underneath are the everlasting arms..
— Deuteronomy 33:27
"Chet" is a picture of a fence which surrounds protects, and embraces. Compassion and favor are words that use the letter chet and can be considered things that surround.
Many sorrows shall be to the wicked; But he who trusts in the LORD, mercy shall surround him.
— Psalm 32:10
Trust has to do with being surrounded and protected in His mercy.
All three Hebrew letters come with the idea of being on the inside, surrounded, and protected.
According to the word picture definition, we could define trust as:
To abide and rest inside the goodness of God protected, embraced, and surrounded by His compassion and favor.
The name of the LORD is a strong tower; The righteous run to it and are safe.
— Proverbs 18:10
Chet - a fence is a highly expressive covenant image and carries with it the idea of exclusivity giving us the understanding that, much like "bet", our first letter, it is only in relationship with The God of all creation through His one and only Son who covenanted on the cross on behalf of us, that we can abide and trust in Him. Christ secured for us that indescribable gift and privilege.
This pictograph differs in concept from "bet", in that, it speaks more of boundaries. Our part of trusting God as it concerns this letter is for us to stay within the boundaries of God's purposed and determined ways. God is not obligated to protect us when we step outside of those fences He has built for our protection.
Combining the three letter pictographs used to form the Hebrew word for "trust" into a unified concept, we could read this word to mean... trust is abiding in God by discerning His goodness and greatness and embraced by His covenant love.
I conclude this word study with several scriptures that speak of being 'In Him" that we can sincerely trust.
Great Scripure References About Trusting in Him
The furnishings of what is inside the house of trusting Him are listed in the below scriptures helping to remind us of how vital it is to be in covenant with God through knowing Jesus and to trust in Him completely.
whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life...He who believes in Him is not condemned
— John 3:15-18
whoever believes in Him will receive remission of sins.
— Acts 10:43
in Him we live and move and have our being.
— Acts 17:28
Righteousness of faith...shall be imputed to us who believe in Him
— Romans 4:13-14
all the promises of God in Him are Yes, and in Him Amen
— II Corinthians 1:20
For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.
— II Corinthians 5:21
He chose us in Him...In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins...In Him also we have obtained an inheritance...In Him you were sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise.
— Ephesians 1:4-13
we have boldness and access with confidence through faith in Him.
— Ephesians 3:12
you are complete in Him
— Colossians 2:10
this is the confidence that we have in Him, that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us.
— I John 5:14
He heeded their prayer, because they put their trust in Him
— I Chronicles 5:20
He is a shield to all who trust in Him.
— Psalm 18:30
My heart trusted in Him, and I am helped
— Psalm 28:7
our heart shall rejoice in Him ,Because we have trusted in His holy name.
— Psalm 33:21
Blessed is the man who trusts in Him!...The LORD redeems the soul of His servants,And none of those who trust in Him shall be condemned.
— Psalm 34:8,22
Psalm 37:5 Commit your way to the LORD,Trust also in Him, And He shall bring it to pass...He shall deliver them from the wicked, And save them, Because they trust in Him.
— Psalm 37:5,40
He is a shield to those who put their trust in Him.
— Proverbs 30:5
The LORD is my portion,” says my soul, “ Therefore I hope in Him!”
— Lamentations 3:24
The LORD is good, A stronghold in the day of trouble; And He knows those who trust in Him.
— Nahum 1:7
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