'Understand' in the Bible
Come, let Us (Father, Son, Holy Spirit) go down and there confuse and mix up their language, so that they will not understand one another’s speech.”
Pharaoh said to Joseph, “I have dreamed a dream, and there is no one who can interpret it; and I have heard it said about you that you can understand a dream and interpret it.”
Thus says the Lord, “By this you shall know and recognize and acknowledge that I am the Lord: look, with the staff in my hand I will strike the water in the Nile, and it shall be turned to blood.
Pharaoh’s servants said to him, “How long shall this man be a trap to us? Let the men go, so that they may serve the Lord their God. Do you not realize that Egypt is destroyed?”
But if the Lord creates an entirely new thing, and the ground opens its mouth and swallows them up, along with all that belongs to them, and they descend alive into Sheol (the nether world, the place of the dead), then you will understand that these men have spurned and rejected the Lord!”
Therefore know and understand today, and take it to your heart, that the Lord is God in the heavens above and on the earth below; there is no other.
Therefore know [without any doubt] and understand that the Lord your God, He is God, the faithful God, who is keeping His covenant and His [steadfast] lovingkindness to a thousand generations with those who love Him and keep His commandments;
“The Lord will bring a nation against you from far away, from the end of the earth, [as swift] as the eagle swoops down [to attack], a nation whose language you will not understand,
Yet to this day the Lord has not given you a heart and mind to understand, nor eyes to see, nor ears to hear.
Also, all [the people of] that generation were gathered to their fathers [in death]; and another generation arose after them who did not know (recognize, understand) the Lord, nor even the work which He had done for Israel.
So Jephthah said to the elders of Gilead, “If you take me back [home] to fight against the Ammonites and the Lord gives them over to me, will I [really] become your head?”
In those days the Philistines gathered their forces for war to fight against Israel. Achish said to David, “Understand for certain that you and your men will go out with me to battle.”
Because of Your word (promise), and in accordance with Your own heart, You have done all these great and astounding things to let Your servant know (understand).
Then Eliakim the son of Hilkiah, and Shebna and Joah, said to the Rabshakeh, “Please speak to your servants in the Aramaic (Syrian) language, because we understand it; and do not speak with us in the Judean (Hebrew) language in the hearing of the people who are on the wall.”
Now, O Lord our God, please, save us from his hand so that all the kingdoms of the earth may know [without any doubt] that You alone, O Lord, are God.”
“As for you, Solomon my son, know the God of your father [have personal knowledge of Him, be acquainted with, and understand Him; appreciate, heed, and cherish Him] and serve Him with a blameless heart and a willing mind; for the Lord searches all hearts and minds, and understands every intent and inclination of the thoughts. If you seek Him [inquiring for and of Him and requiring Him as your first and vital necessity] He will let you find Him; but if you abandon (turn away from) Him, He will reject you forever.
“All this,” said David, “the Lord made me understand in writing by His hand upon me, all the work and details [to be done] according to this plan.”
Then he read from it, in front of the open square which was in front of the Water Gate, from early morning until midday, in the presence of the men and women, those who could understand; and all the people listened carefully to the Book of the Law.
Also Jeshua, Bani, Sherebiah, Jamin, Akkub, Shabbethai, Hodiah, Maaseiah, Kelita, Azariah, Jozabad, Hanan, Pelaiah, and the Levites, explained the Law to the people, and the people remained in their places.
On the second day, all of the heads of fathers’ households of all the people, the priests, and the Levites, were gathered before Ezra the scribe to gain insight into the words of the Law (divine instruction).
“Teach me, and I will be silent;And show me how I have erred.
“What do you know that we do not know?What do you understand that is not equally clear to us?
“I would learn the words which He would answer,And understand what He would say to me.
“Yet these are just the fringes of His ways [mere samples of His power],The faintest whisper of His voice!Who can contemplate the thunder of His [full] mighty power?”
“Those [who are] abundant in years may not [always] be wise,Nor may the elders [always] understand justice.
“Can anyone understand the spreading of the cloudsOr the thundering of His pavilion?
“[You said to me] ‘Who is this that darkens and obscures counsel [by words] without knowledge?’Therefore [I now see] I have [rashly] uttered that which I did not understand,Things too wonderful for me, which I did not know.
“Be still and know (recognize, understand) that I am God.I will be exalted among the nations! I will be exalted in the earth.”
When I considered how to understand this,It was too great an effort for me and too painful
The rulers do not know nor do they understand;They walk on in the darkness [of complacent satisfaction];All the foundations of the earth [the fundamental principles of the administration of justice] are shaken.
Blessed and happy are the people who know the joyful sound [of the trumpet’s blast]!They walk, O Lord, in the light and favor of Your countenance!
A senseless man [in his crude and uncultivated state] knows nothing,Nor does a [self-righteous] fool understand this:
Consider thoughtfully, you senseless (stupid ones) among the people;And you [dull-minded] fools, when will you become wise and understand?
Know and fully recognize with gratitude that the Lord Himself is God;It is He who has made us, not we ourselves [and we are His].We are His people and the sheep of His pasture.
Make me understand the way of Your precepts,So that I will meditate (focus my thoughts) on Your wonderful works.
I understand more than the aged [who have not observed Your precepts],Because I have observed and kept Your precepts.
You know when I sit down and when I rise up [my entire life, everything I do];You understand my thought from afar.
To understand a proverb and a figure [of speech] or an enigma with its interpretation,And the words of the wise and their riddles [that require reflection].
Then you will understand the [reverent] fear of the Lord [that is, worshiping Him and regarding Him as truly awesome]And discover the knowledge of God.
Then you will understand righteousness and justice [in every circumstance]And integrity and every good path.
“O you naive or inexperienced [who are easily misled], understand prudence and seek astute common sense;And, O you [closed-minded, self-confident] fools, understand wisdom [seek the insight and self-discipline that leads to godly living].
The wisdom of the sensible is to understand his way,But the foolishness of [shortsighted] fools is deceit.
Man’s steps are ordered and ordained by the Lord.How then can a man [fully] understand his way?
Evil men do not understand justice,But they who long for and seek the Lord understand it fully.
There are three things which are too astounding and unexpectedly wonderful for me,Four which I do not understand:
“The ox [instinctively] knows its owner,And the donkey its master’s feeding trough,But Israel does not know [Me as Lord],My people do not understand.”
And He said, “Go, and tell this people:‘Keep on listening, but do not understand;Keep on looking, but do not comprehend.’
“Make the heart of this people insensitive,Their ears dull,And their eyes dim,Otherwise they might see with their eyes,Hear with their ears,Understand with their hearts,And return and be healed.”
They say “To whom would He teach knowledge?And to whom would He explain the message?Those just weaned from milk?Those just taken from the breast?
“As often as it passes through, it will seize you;For morning after morning it will pass through, by day and by night,And it will be sheer terror to understand what it means.”
Stop and take some time and wonder [at this prophecy],Blind yourselves and be blinded [at its fulfillment by your spiritual incompetence].They are drunk, but not from wine;They stagger, but not from strong drink.
The heart (mind) of those who act impulsively will discern the truth,And the tongue of the stammerers will hurry to speak clearly.
You will no longer see the fierce and insolent people,A people of unintelligible speech which no one comprehends,Of a strange and stammering tongue which no one understands.
Then Eliakim and Shebna and Joah said to the Rabshakeh, “Please, speak to your servants in Aramaic, because we understand it; and do not speak to us in Judean (Hebrew) in the hearing of the people who are [stationed] on the wall.”
Now, O Lord our God, save us from his hand so that all the kingdoms of the earth may know and fully realize that You alone, Lord, are God.”
So that they may see and know,And consider and understand together,That the hand of the Lord has done this,That the Holy One of Israel has created it.
“You are My witnesses,” declares the Lord,“And My servant whom I have chosen,That you may know and believe MeAnd understand that I am He.Before Me there was no God formed,And there will be none after Me.
They do not know, nor do they understand, for God has muddied their eyes so that they cannot see, and their hearts (minds) as well so that they cannot understand.
So He will sprinkle many nations [with His blood, providing salvation],Kings will shut their mouths because of Him;For what they had not been told they will see,And what they had not heard they will understand.
And the dogs are greedy; they never have enough.They are shepherds who have no understanding;They have all turned to their own way,Each one to his unlawful gain, without exception.
‘Only understand fully and acknowledge your wickedness and guilt,That you have rebelled (transgressed) against the Lord your GodAnd have scattered your favors among strangers under every green tree,And you have not obeyed My voice,’ says the Lord.
“For My people are stupid and foolish,” [says the Lord to Jeremiah];“They do not know Me;They are foolish childrenAnd have no understanding.They are shrewd [enough] to do evil,But they do not know [how] to do good.”
“Behold, I am bringing a nation against you from far away, O house of Israel,” says the Lord.“It is a mighty and enduring nation,It is an ancient nation,A nation whose language you do not know,Whose words you do not comprehend.
“They bend their tongue like their bow;[Their] lies and not truth prevail and grow strong in the land;For they proceed from evil to evil,And they do not know and understand and acknowledge Me,” says the Lord.
“Your dwelling is in the midst of deceit [oppression upon oppression and deceit upon deceit];Through deceit they refuse to know (understand) Me,” says the Lord.
Who is the wise man who may understand this [without any doubt]? To whom has the mouth of the Lord spoken, so that he may declare it? Why is the land ruined, laid waste like a wilderness, so that no one passes through?
But You, O Lord, know me [and understand my devotion to You];You see me;And You examine the attitude of my heart toward You.Drag out the faithless like sheep for the slaughter [O Lord]And set them apart for the day of slaughter.
O Lord, You know and understand;Remember me [thoughtfully], take notice of me,take vengeance for me on my persecutors.Do not, in view of Your patience, take me away;Know that for Your sake I endure [continual] rebuke and dishonor.
“The heart is deceitful above all thingsAnd it is extremely sick;Who can understand it fully and know its secret motives?
“Is this man [King] Coniah a despised, broken jar?Is he a vessel in which no one takes pleasure?Why are he and his [royal] descendants hurled outAnd cast into a land which they do not know or understand?
“The anger of the Lord will not turn backUntil He has set in motion and accomplished the thoughts and intentions of His heart;In the last days you will clearly understand it.
I will give them a heart to know Me, [understanding fully] that I am the Lord; and they will be My people, and I will be their God, for they will return to Me with their whole heart.
The fierce (righteous) anger of the Lord will not turn backUntil He has fulfilled and until He has accomplishedThe intent of His heart (mind);In the latter days you will understand this.
And each man will no longer teach his neighbor and his brother, saying, ‘Know the Lord,’ for they will all know Me [through personal experience], from the least of them to the greatest,” says the Lord. “For I will forgive their wickedness, and I will no longer remember their sin.”
‘Call to Me and I will answer you, and tell you [and even show you] great and mighty things, [things which have been confined and hidden], which you do not know and understand and cannot distinguish.’
not to many peoples of unintelligible speech or difficult language, whose words you cannot understand. But I have sent you to them who should listen to you and pay attention to My message;
‘Thus My anger will come to an end and I will satisfy My wrath on them, and I will be appeased; then they will know [without any doubt] that I the Lord have spoken in My zeal when I have spent My wrath on them.
The slain will fall among you, then you shall know [without any doubt] that I am the Lord.
Then they will know [without any doubt] that I am the Lord; I have not said in vain that I would bring this disaster [as punishment] on them.”’
Then you will know [without any doubt] that I am the Lord, when their slain are among their idols around their altars, on every high hill, on all the tops of the mountains, under every leafy tree and under every oak with thick branches, the places where they offered sweet incense and a soothing aroma to all their idols.
And I will stretch out My hand against them and make the land a more desolate waste than the wilderness toward Diblah [the Moabite city], throughout all the places where they live; and they will know [without any doubt] that I am the Lord.”’”
For My eye will have no pity on you, nor will I spare you, but I will repay you for your evil ways, while your abominations are among you; and you will know (recognize, understand) [without any doubt] that I am the Lord.’
My eye will show no pity nor will I spare [you]. I will repay you in accordance with your ways, while your abominations are in your midst; then you will know and understand that it is I, the Lord, who strikes you.
You will fall by the sword; I will judge and punish you [in front of your neighbors] at the border of [the land of] Israel; and you will know [without any doubt] that I am the Lord.
And you will know [without any doubt] that I am the Lord; for you have not walked in My statutes nor have you executed My ordinances, but you have acted in accordance with the ordinances of the nations around you.”’”
So they will know and understand fully that I am the Lord when I scatter them among the nations and disperse them among the [pagan] countries.
But I will leave a few [survivors] who will escape the sword, the famine, and the virulent disease, that they may confess all their repulsive (idolatrous) acts among the nations where they go, and may know [without any doubt] that I am the Lord.”
The cities that are inhabited will be in ruins and the land will be deserted; and you will know [without any doubt] that I am the Lord.”’”
“So My hand will be against the [counterfeit] prophets who see (make up) empty and delusive visions and who give lying prophecies. They will have no place in the [secret] council of My people, nor will they be recorded in the register of the house of Israel, nor will they enter into the land of Israel, that you may know [without any doubt] that I am the Lord God.
So I will tear down the wall which you have plastered with whitewash and bring it down to the ground, so that its foundations will be exposed; when it falls, you will perish in its midst. And you shall know and understand fully that I am the Lord.
I will also tear off your [pagan] veils and rescue My people from your hands, and they will no longer be in your grip to be hunted and trapped. Then you will know [without any doubt] that I am the Lord.
therefore, you women will no longer see false visions or practice divinations, and I will rescue My people from your hand. Then you will know [without any doubt] that I am the Lord.”
I will set My face against that man [that hypocrite] and will make him a sign and a proverb, and I will cut him off from among My people; and you will know [without any doubt] that I am the Lord.
Then they will reassure you [in regard to the appropriateness of the judgments] when you see their [heinous] conduct and actions, for you will know that I have not done without cause whatever I did to it,” declares the Lord God.
and I set My face against them. Though they have come out of the fire, yet the fire will consume them. Then you will know [without any doubt] that I am the Lord, when I set My face against them.
“Son of man, make Jerusalem understand [the heinous and vile nature of] her repulsive (idolatrous) acts
And I will establish My covenant with you, and you will know [without any doubt] that I am the Lord,
All the choice men [from Judah] in all his troops will fall by the sword, and those that survive will be scattered to every wind; and you will know [without any doubt] that I the Lord have spoken.”
All the trees of the field will know that I the Lord bring down the tall tree, exalt the low tree, dry up the green tree, and make the dry tree flourish. I am the Lord; I have spoken, and I will fulfill it.”
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