5 occurrences in 5 dictionaries

Reference: Arm


used to denote power (Ps 10:15; Eze 30:21; Jer 48:25). It is also used of the omnipotence of God (Ex 15:16; Ps 89:13; 98:1; 77:15; Isa 53:1; Joh 12:38; Ac 13:17)

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Figure for might, of God (Isa 53:1). "Break the arm," i.e. the power (Eze 30:21). "Stretched out arm," image from a warrior with spear or sword thrust forth: all the power put forth (Jos 8:26; Isa 5:25).

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Part of the insignia of royalty amongst Oriental peoples was a bracelet worn on the arm (2Sa 1:10; cf. W. R. Smith's reading of 2Ki 11:12 where, agreeing with Wellhausen, he would substitute 'bracelet' for 'testimony' [OTJC [Note: TJC The Old Test. in the Jewish Church.] 311 n. [Note: . note.] ]). The importance attached to the functions discharged by this organ are incidentally referred to by Job in his solemn repudiation of conscious wrong-doing ('Let my shoulder fall from the shoulder-blade, and mine arm be broken from the bone' Job 31:22). The heart was said to be situated 'between the arms,' and, therefore, in the murder of Joram, the deadly aim of Jehu resulted in the instantaneous death of the former (2Ki 9:24). It is interesting to recall here the means by which Jeremiah escaped the vengeance of his political enemies, especially as the narrative reveals the affection inspired by the prophet amongst some of the courtiers (Jer 38:12). A note of vividness is introduced into the narratives telling of St. Paul's method of bespeaking attention from a crowd which he was anxious to address (Ac 13:16; 21:40; cf. Ac 12:17). There is in the Gospels no more beautiful picture than the two presented by St. Mark, in which the tenderness of Jesus to little children is emphasized. In each of them is pointed out the startling method by which His teaching was often enforced objectively on His hearers' attention (Mr 9:36; 10:16, cf. Lu 2:28).

Besides this literal use, there is also an extensive employment of the word in a metaphorical or a spiritual sense. Sometimes we find it used to denote the strength of the ungodly and their power to commit acts of cruel tyranny on God's people (cf. Ps 10:15; Job 38:15; Eze 30:21 f.; cf. 'arm of flesh,' 2Ch 32:8; Jer 17:6). Sometimes the word expresses the might of God's ceaseless activity either on behalf of His chosen (De 33:27; Ps 44:3; Isa 33:2; 63:12; Ac 13:17), or in breaking the power of His enemies (Ex 6:6; De 5:15; Eze 21:6; 32:21), or again in upholding the movements and harmony of His creation, ruling in justice with unswerving sternness (Eze 20:33 f., Job 40:9; Isa 40:16; 51:5; Jer 27:5; 32:17). The doom pronounced on the house of Eli contains this word to express the removal of that latent vitality which shows itself in prolonged hereditary strength and activity (1Sa 2:31, cf. Zec 11:17).

The cognate verb is also used not only literally, to furnish arms for the purposes of war (Ge 14:14; Nu 31:3,5), but also in a spiritual sense, to procure and make use of those graces and helps which are meant as weapons, offensive and defensive, of the soul against sin (1Pe 4:1, cf. Eph 6:13).

J. R. Willis.

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The member of the body which is capable of lifting burdens and defending the person: it is used symbolically for the power and strength of God on behalf of His saints. Ex 15:16; Ps 77:15; Isa 51:9; 53:1. The arm of Jehovah is often spoken of in the O.T. It redeemed, Ex 6:6; etc.; gathers His own, Isa 40:11; and rules for Him, Isa 40:10, as in the kingdom. It is a holy arm, Isa 52:10; Ps 98:1; and it is a glorious arm, Isa 63:12. The arm of the Lord is revealed to souls where there is repentance and faith in the report which God sends. Isa 53:1; Ro 10:16. It is to be trusted in even by the isles of the Gentiles, that is, by sinners everywhere in creation. Isa 51:5.

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ARM. As it is by this member of the body that we chiefly exert our strength, it is therefore used in Scripture for an emblem of power. Thus God is said to have delivered his people from Egyptian bondage "with a stretched-out arm," De 5:15; and he thus threatens Eli the high priest, "I will cut off thine arm, and the arm of thy father's house," 1Sa 2:31; that is, I will deprive thee and thy family of power and authority.

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