Covenant Of Salt

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Holman Bible Dictionary [1]

 Numbers 18:19 2 Chronicles 13:5 Leviticus 2:13

International Standard Bible Encyclopedia [2]

sôlt ( בּרית מלח , berı̄th melaḥ  ; ἅλας , hálas , classical Greek ἅλς , háls ): As salt was regarded as a necessary ingredient of the daily food, and so of all sacrifices offered to Yahweh ( Leviticus 2:13 ), it became an easy step to the very close connection between salt and covenant-making. When men ate together they became friends. Compare the Arabic expression, "There is salt between us"; "He has eaten of my salt," which means partaking of hospitality which cemented friendship; compare "eat the salt of the palace" ( Ezra 4:14 ). Covenants were generally confirmed by sacrificial meals and salt was always present. Since, too, salt is a preservative, it would easily become symbolic of an enduring covenant. So offerings to Yahweh were to be by a statute forever, "a covenant of salt for ever before Yahweh" ( Numbers 18:19 ). David received his kingdom forever from Yahweh by a "covenant of salt" ( 2 Chronicles 13:5 ). In the light of these conceptions the remark of our Lord becomes the more significant: "Have salt in yourselves, and be at peace one with another" ( Mark 9:50 ).

Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature [3]

( בְּרַית מֶלִח ). This phrase is supposed to denote a Perpetual Covenant , in the sealing or ratification of which salt was used.' As salt was added to different kinds of viands, not only to give them a relish, but to preserve them from putrefaction and decay, it became the emblem of Incorruptibility and Permanence . Hence a "covenant of salt" signified an Everlasting covenant ( Numbers 18:19;  Leviticus 2:13;  2 Chronicles 13:5). (See Salt).