. Make a Donation

Index Page
About The Author
Bible Quiz
Holy Day Calendar
Free Online Bibles
Bible Reading Plan

Quick Search the thousands of Bible studies on this website.
Just type in topic word(s) or a question.
Get Daily Bible Study on Facebook
Get Daily Bible Study on Twitter
Sunday, May 17 2015

Proverbs 20: Awake And Sing, Ye That Dwell In Dust

"Thy dead men shall live, together with my dead body shall they arise. Awake and sing, ye that dwell in dust"

The English-language word "sleep" originated from an Anglo-Saxon word, slaepan, that meant to slip (the English words sleep and slip originated from the same root word), as in becoming loose, or relaxed (The Consolidated Webster Encyclopedic Dictionary). Right from the earliest time, the English and Anglo-Saxon words meant either sleeping or the "sleep" of death - hence also the saying "rest in peace."

As is so often the case, a single English word, "sleep," is used to translate a number of actual Hebrew words of the Holy Scriptures. Notice carefully how often the Scriptures, along with describing natural or induced sleep (e.g. Adam and Abraham; see the first examples below) also use "sleep" to refer to the state of being dead.

Asleep In Death

  • The Hebrew word, pronounced tar-day-maw, that means made unconscious, as in being anesthetized. Examples:

    "2:21 And the LORD God caused a deep sleep to fall upon Adam, and he slept: and he took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh instead thereof" (Genesis 2:21 KJV)

    "15:12 And when the sun was going down, a deep sleep fell upon Abram; and, lo, an horror of great darkness fell upon him." (Genesis 15:12 KJV)

  • The Hebrew word, pronounced yaw-shane, that means to become limp i.e. to die. Example:

    "13:3 Consider and hear me, O LORD my God: lighten mine eyes, lest I sleep the sleep of death" (Psalm 13:3 KJV)

  • The Hebrew word, pronounced shaw-kawb, that means to lie down and rest i.e. to die. Example:

    "31:16 And the LORD said unto Moses, Behold, thou shalt sleep with thy fathers" (Deuteronomy 31:16 KJV)

  • The Hebrew word, pronounced shay-naw, that means slumber. Example:

    "28:16 And Jacob awaked out of his sleep, and he said, Surely the LORD is in this place; and I knew it not." (Genesis 28:16 KJV)

The photograph shows a 3,000 year-old mummified Egyptian child. It was taken at the Royal Ontario Museum in Toronto by Wayne Blank in October 2009. Appropriately, many cultures had or have a custom of placing their dead in a sleeping position - as was the child. Also most fittingly, it is "sleeping" in a fetal position (i.e. like an unborn child) - portraying very well what actually happens to the dead while they await the time when they will surely be "born again" (see the Fact Finder question below).

Notice the verse also accurately specifies not merely that the dead sleep "in the dust," but eventually (or sooner, if cremated or lost in a fire) become dust i.e. "ye that dwell in dust," not merely "ye that dwell in the dust" (see Dust In The Wind and Leaving The Soul Behind).

"26:19 Thy dead men shall live, together with my dead body shall they arise. Awake and sing, ye that dwell in dust: for thy dew is as the dew of herbs, and the earth shall cast out the dead." (Isaiah 26:19 KJV)

The prophet Daniel was given to plainly see the future time when "many of them that sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake" (see the entire study series for the prophet Daniel beginning with The Prophet Daniel: A Child Of The Exile; the links to all studies in the series are found in each one).

"12:1 And at that time shall Michael stand up, the great prince which standeth for the children of thy people: and there shall be a time of trouble, such as never was since there was a nation even to that same time: and at that time thy people shall be delivered, every one that shall be found written in the book. 12:2 And many of them that sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life, and some to shame and everlasting contempt. 12:3 And they that be wise shall shine as the brightness of the firmament; and they that turn many to righteousness as the stars for ever and ever." (Daniel 12:1-3 KJV)

So too, the apostle Paul described the resurrections from the "sleep" of death to come:

"15:51 Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, 15:52 In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed. 15:53 For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality. 15:54 So when this corruptible shall have put on incorruption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory." (1 Corinthians 15:51-54 KJV)

"4:13 But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope. 4:14 For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him. 4:15 For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep. 4:16 For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: 4:17 Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord." (1 Thessalonians 4:13-17 KJV)

The Proverbs are applied examples of living a righteous life in the time that humanity will be judged. Those who choose to repent and obey the LORD (see The LORD God Our Saviour) will awaken to eternal life.

The Holy Scriptures

"20:1 Wine is a mocker, strong drink is raging: and whosoever is deceived thereby is not wise [see also Seed-Bearing Plants: For Food Or For Folly?].

20:2 The fear of a king is as the roaring of a lion: whoso provoketh him to anger sinneth against his own soul [see Leaving The Soul Behind].

20:3 It is an honour for a man to cease from strife: but every fool will be meddling [see Is There Hope For A Fool?].

20:4 The sluggard will not plow by reason of the cold; therefore shall he beg in harvest, and have nothing [see also How Do Sluggards Violate The Fourth Commandment?].

20:5 Counsel in the heart of man is like deep water; but a man of understanding will draw it out.

20:6 Most men will proclaim every one his own goodness: but a faithful man who can find?

20:7 The just man walketh in his integrity: his children are blessed after him.

20:8 A king that sitteth in the throne of judgment scattereth away all evil with his eyes.

20:9 Who can say, I have made my heart clean, I am pure from my sin?

20:10 Divers weights, and divers measures, both of them are alike abomination to the LORD.

20:11 Even a child is known by his doings, whether his work be pure, and whether it be right.

20:12 The hearing ear, and the seeing eye, the LORD hath made even both of them.

20:13 Love not sleep, lest thou come to poverty; open thine eyes, and thou shalt be satisfied with bread.

20:14 It is naught, it is naught, saith the buyer: but when he is gone his way, then he boasteth.

20:15 There is gold, and a multitude of rubies: but the lips of knowledge are a precious jewel.

20:16 Take his garment that is surety for a stranger: and take a pledge of him for a strange woman.

20:17 Bread of deceit is sweet to a man; but afterwards his mouth shall be filled with gravel.

20:18 Every purpose is established by counsel: and with good advice make war.

20:19 He that goeth about as a talebearer revealeth secrets: therefore meddle not with him that flattereth with his lips.

20:20 Whoso curseth his father or his mother, his lamp shall be put out in obscure darkness.

20:21 An inheritance may be gotten hastily at the beginning; but the end thereof shall not be blessed.

20:22 Say not thou, I will recompense evil; but wait on the LORD, and he shall save thee.

20:23 Divers weights are an abomination unto the LORD; and a false balance is not good.

20:24 Man's goings are of the LORD; how can a man then understand his own way?

20:25 It is a snare to the man who devoureth that which is holy, and after vows to make enquiry.

20:26 A wise king scattereth the wicked, and bringeth the wheel over them.

20:27 The spirit of man is the candle of the LORD, searching all the inward parts of the belly.

20:28 Mercy and truth preserve the king: and his throne is upholden by mercy.

20:29 The glory of young men is their strength: and the beauty of old men is the gray head.

20:30 The blueness of a wound cleanseth away evil: so do stripes the inward parts of the belly." (Proverbs 20:1-30 KJV)

Fact Finder: When will humanity be "born again" from the sleep of death?
See The Harvests Of Salvation and What Was The Lesson Of John 3:16?

Bible Quiz Daily Bible Study Library
Thousands of Studies!

Jesus Christ
Bible History
Christian Living
Eternal Life
By The Book
Bible Places
The Spirit World

This Day In History, May 17

218: The 7th recorded perihelion (the point in the orbit of a planet or comet where it is nearest to the sun) passage of Halley's Comet (see also What Can You See In The Firmament Of The Heavens? and The Christian Universe).

395: Upon the death of Emperor Theodosius I, the Roman Empire was no longer ruled by a single leader. Theodosius had divided the empire into western and eastern portions, thereby creating the prophesied "two legs" of the prophecy given to King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon (see The Prophet Daniel: Nebuchadnezzar's Image).

1377: Pope Gregory XI restored the papacy to Rome from Avignon, France, where it had resided for 72 years. It had been moved there by French Pope Clement V in 1305, to escape the political turmoil in Italy at the time (see The Struggle For The Papacy and The Little Big Horn; listen also to our Sermon Constantine's Papacy).

Captain James Cook 1521: Edward Stafford, the 3rd Duke of Buckingham, was executed for treason.

1562: The Edict of St. Germain permitted the Huguenots (Protestants) in France.

1590: Anne of Denmark was crowned Queen of Scotland.

1620: The first merry-go-round at a fair, in Philippapolis, Turkey.

1756: Britain declared war on France, beginning the French and Indian War.

1773: The Resolution, under Captain James Cook, became the first ship to enter Antarctic waters.

1805: Muhammad Ali became the Governor of Egypt.

1808: Napoleon I of France (Napoleon Bonaparte) ordered the annexation of the Papal States into the French Empire.

1809: The Papal States were annexed by France.

1814: Denmark ceded Norway to Sweden.

1902: Greek archaeologist Valerios Stais discovered the Antikythera mechanism, an ancient mechanical analog computer.

1912: Captain Robert Scott's expedition reached the South Pole, a month after Roald Amundsen of Norway.

1939: The Nazi government in Germany prohibited Jews from working as dentists, veterinarians and chemists (see also Presidential Quotes On War, Terrorism, Religion and Why Does Satan Love Liars?).

1940: Germany occupied Brussels, Belgium and began the invasion of France (listen to our Sermon The European World Wars).

1945: The Soviet Red Army liberated and occupied Warsaw, Poland, from German forces.

1966: A U.S. B-52 bomber collided in mid-air with a refuelling tanker over Spain. 8 people were killed, and the bomber released its H-bomb into the Atlantic.

1987: At the time when Iraq was regarded as a U.S. ally (primarily because Iraq was at war with Iran), an Iraqi fighter jet "accidentally" fired a missile that struck the USS Stark. Although 37 U.S. sailors were killed, the U.S. declared it to be an incident of "friendly fire" from an ally.

1990: "Enlightened leaders" of the World Health Organization (WHO) removed homosexuality from its official list of psychiatric diseases.

2004: Massachusetts became the first U.S. state to legalize homosexual "marriage" (see also Iniquity In History And Prophecy).


Copyright © Wayne Blank