What does 333 mean in the bible?

by | Aug 1, 2023 | Theology | 0 comments

The number 333 does not appear in the Bible. However, the sequence 33, 333, and 3333 appears in several scriptures either as chapter and verse references or through a sequence of threes mentioned in a certain passage of scripture. While some of these mentions are just coincidental, most of them are used purposefully as symbolism for a hidden message. 

So, what exactly is the meaning of 333 in the Bible?

The number 333 symbolizes the trinity and divinity as well as the promises of God which are described as yes and Amen. In the old testament, God used the number 333 to demonstrate his blessing over his children. As such, 333 can be seen as a symbol of his blessing and promises. 

Understanding the number 3

Since the number 333 doesn’t appar explicitly in the Bible, we will start by examining the number 3 which does.  The number 3 appears explicitly 467 times in the Bible. Number three is very significant in the Bible because it is the first of the four numbers that are considered perfect numbers in the Bible. The other three are 7, 10, and 12. 

Perfection


The perfection in the number three can be seen in God’s perfect order in Genesis. We have the three righteous patriarchs before the flood (Abel, Enoch, and Noah) as well as the three righteous patriarchs after the deluge (Abraham, Issac, and Jacob). The perfection of number 3 is also revealed in Gethsemane where Jesus prayed three times before his arrest. Upon his arrest, Jesus was crucified at the 3rd hour of the day after which there were three hours of darkness. After He died and was buried, Jesus rose again after three days. 

Trinity

The number also signifies the trinity. The doctrine of the trinity was introduced to explain the misconception in the early church that Christians were worshiping three Gods. The Trinity is a representation of God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit. From this context, we can infer that the number 3 represents divinity or God’s presence. For instance, in Exodus 19:10-15, Moses asked the Israelites to sanctify themselves for two days in preparation for meeting God on the third day. 

Significance of 333 in the Bible

The number 333 is not mentioned explicitly in the Bible but we can find its sequence in several instances in the scriptures. For instance, multiple threes are used with reference to the promised land. There are other earlier mentions of the land flowing with milk and honey but Exodus 33:3 is the first time God commands Israel to start going towards their inheritance. The phrase “milk and honey” is used at least 20 times in the Old Testament and it is used to refer to the beauty and fertility of the land that God promised. 

Multiple threes (333) are used in Biblical discussions of the Promised Land. Although the phrase “land flowing with milk and honey” is referenced three times previously (Exodus 3:8, 17, 13:5), Exodus 33:3 (333) is the first time God commands the Israelites to begin their journey to their inheritance. The phrase “milk and honey,” used twenty times in the Old Testament, describes the exceptional fertility and beauty of the land God promised.

The use of the number three in multiples (333 or 3333) is a symbol of God’s blessing on his people as illustrated through Israel. This significance can be traced back to Father Abraham whom God had said would use to bless the nations of the world. IN Genesis 15:8, Abraham decides to ask God for details on how the blessing would come and God uses the number three in the following verse:

Take Me a heifer of three (3) years old, a she-goat of three (3) old, and a ram of three (3)… (Genesis 15:9).

After Abraham did as instructed, God confirmed his covenant with a smoking furnace and a burning lamp. 

Another illustration of this can be seen when Israel gets into the promised land and God asks them to set up cities of refuge. These were cities that would offer refuge to someone that had killed another person until it was determined with it was premeditated or accidental. To do this, Israel portioned the land into three (3) sections (Deut. 19:3). After this, they set aside three (3) refuge cities to the east of Jordan and three (3) to the west of it. These cities were a reminder of God’s grace which was also ultimately demonstrated by their inheritance of the promised land. 

The promised land meant a lot to the Jews in the Old Testament but the promise of the messiah was an even bigger deal – especially to the new testament church. The Number 333 not only points to the promise of Canaan but also the promise of the Messiah. Several threes are used in Mathew 12:40 when Jesus was giving the only proof he ever gave to the Pharisees concerning his assertion that he was the Messiah the prophets had spoken about. 

For just as Jonah was in the belly of the whale three (3) days and three (3), in like manner, the Son of man shall be in the heart of the earth three (3) days and three (3)  (Matthew 12:40).

Just as Jesus promised, he would later on die, be buried for three days, and rise again from the dead. As Moses and Joshua led Israel from captivity to the promised land, Jesus becomes the door through which the new testament church will be led to the kingdom of heaven. In the words of scripture.

Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. John 14:6

In the old covenant, the promised land was a physical place  – which is present-day Israel. But in the new covenant, God’s children have received the promise to inherit a different kingdom that is not located on earth – the kingdom of heaven. 

Conclusion

To sum it up, the number 333 can be viewed as a symbol of the blessing and promise of God. As illustrated in both the Abrahamic and Mosaic Covenants, God used the number 333 to affirm his commitment to bless his children. At that time, it meant taking them to Canaan – which he did. Today, we can view 333 as a number that symbolizes God’s blessing and his good promises. But it can also be said to be a symbol of his ultimate promise to the church – being rewarded in heaven. In the words of scripture, it is his good pleasure to give you his kingdom (Luke 12:32). 

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About: Ronie

Ronnie Amaya has been actively involved in ministry since his high school and university days where he served as a Christian union leader. After graduation, he worked as an itinerary minister preaching in Schools, Universities, Street Evangelizations, and Churches. In 2018, he led a team in planting a new church in Nairobi, Kenya where he is currently serving as the lead pastor.
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Ronie

Ronnie Amaya has been actively involved in ministry since his high school and university days where he served as a Christian union leader. After graduation, he worked as an itinerary minister preaching in Schools, Universities, Street Evangelizations, and Churches. In 2018, he led a team in planting a new church in Nairobi, Kenya where he is currently serving as the lead pastor.

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