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Pillars [1]

'ammud . A chief feature in Eastern building, the flat roofs being supported by pillars. The tent fashion remained even in permanent structures. Open Persian halls have the fronts supported by pillars and shaded by curtains fastened to the ground by pegs or to trees in the court ( Esther 1:6). The heaven is compared to a canopy supported by pillars ( Psalms 104:2;  Isaiah 40:22). In  Psalms 75:3, "the earth ... dissolved, I bear up the pillars of it," literally," I have weighed," i.e. consolidated by exact weight the pillars. I who at creation brought the world from chaos into beautiful order will restore it from its present disorganization. In  1 Samuel 15:12, "Saul set him up a (not 'place' but) monument," literally, hand, probably a pillar ( Genesis 28:18;  Genesis 35:14). The 12 pillars ranged as boundary stones round the consecrated enclosure represented the 12 tribes, as the "altar" represented Jehovah making covenant with them ( Exodus 24:4;  Isaiah 19:19). In  1 Kings 10:12 mis'ad means "a flight of steps" with "rails" or banisters, Μatsebah often means a "statue" or "idolatrous image" as well as "pillar" ( Deuteronomy 7:5;  2 Chronicles 14:3;  Hosea 3:4).

Boaz and Jachin were the two great pillars of the temple ( 1 Kings 7:21). In  Song of Solomon 3:10 the pillars support the canopy over the chariot at the four corners. Pillars with silver sockets supported the veil that enclosed the holy of holies. The 'amud on which king Joash stood ( 2 Kings 11:14) was not a "pillar", but a "raised platform" at the E. gate of the inner court (compare  Ezekiel 46:2) for the king's use on festive occasions  2 Kings 23:3), the brazen scaffold of Solomon ( 2 Chronicles 6:13; Keil). Pillar is the image of solid firm uprightness, the church's support ( Galatians 2:9;  1 Timothy 3:15). The church is "the pillar of the truth," as the continuance of the truth (historically) rests on it. The church rests on the truth as it is in Jesus, not the truth on the church. The truth donkey it is in itself needs no prop. The truth as it is acknowledged in the world needs the church as its human upholder under God.

The pillar is the intermediate, the "ground" (basis) the ultimate, stay of the building ( 2 Timothy 2:19). Translated as Greek "the firm foundation of (laid by) God (namely, the word of truth  2 Timothy 2:15;  2 Timothy 2:18, contrasted with Hymenseus' word eating as a canker) standeth" fast; the church being the house ( 2 Timothy 2:20) cannot be also the foundation, which would make the house to be founded on the house! The believer shall at last be a pillar immovably firm (unlike earthquake-shaken Philadelphia) and "never more at all go out" (Greek  Revelation 3:12), being under "the blessed necessity of goodness." In  Judges 9:6 Abimelech is crowned "by the oak ('elown , not "plain") of the pillar (or memorial) at Shechem," in the same spot where Joshua held the last national assembly and renewed. Israel's covenant with Jehovah ( Joshua 24:1-25-26), where also probably Jacob had buried the idol trinkets of his household ( Genesis 35:4).