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International Standard Bible Encyclopedia
TREASURE; TREASURER; TREASURY
trezh'-ur, trezh'-ur-er, trezh'-ur-i (otsar, genaz, genez, ganzakh, chocen matmon, mickenah, mikhman, `athudh, saphan; gaza, thesauros):
I. In the Old Testament.
The English word "treasure" has in the Old Testament at least five somewhat distinct meanings as expressed in the words: "treasure," genaz (Aramaic) or genez (Hebrew), usually meaning "the thing stored"; translated "treasures" in Ezr 6:1, but in 5:17 and 7:20 translated "treasure-house": "search made in the king's treasure-house." In Est 3:9; 4:7 the Hebrew form is translated "treasury," as is ganzakh in 1 Ch 28:11.
"Storehouse," not the thing stored but the place of storage; 'otsar means depository, cellar, garner, armory, store or treasure-house. In several places it ought to be translated by some of these words. It is the most frequent word for treasure. the English Revised Version and the American Standard Revised Version both translate in some instances by other words, e.g. 1 Ki 7:51, "treasuries of the house of Yahweh," so also 2 Ch 5:1; "treasury" in Neh 7:70,71, "gave to the treasury a thousand darics of gold"; in Job 38:22, "treasuries of the snow" (compare Prov 8:21; Jer 10:13; 51:16; Ezr 2:69).
3. Hidden Riches:
"Treasure" or something concealed. There are 3 Hebrew words with this meaning and all in the King James Version translated "treasure." (1) Matmon, which literally means "a secret storehouse" and so a secreted valuable, usually money buried, and so hidden riches of any kind, hid treasures: "treasure in your sacks" (Gen 43:23); "dig for it more than for hid treasures" (Job 3:21); "search for her as for hid treasures" (Prov 2:4); "We have stores hidden in the field, of wheat," etc. (Jer 41:8). (2) Mikhman, treasure as hidden, used only in Dan 11:43: "have power over the treasures of gold and silver." (3) Saphan, meaning hidden treasure or valuables concealed: "hidden treasures of the sand" (Dt 33:19).
Perhaps the strength of riches and so treasure, the Hebrew word being chocen, from a root meaning to hoard or lay up: "In the house of the righteous is much treasure" (Prov 15:6); "They take treasure and precious things" (Ezek 22:25).
5. Something Prepared:
"Something prepared," made ready, the Hebrew word being `athudh, meaning "prepared," "ready," therefore something of value and so treasure: "have robbed their treasures," fortifications or other things "made ready" (Isa 10:13).
In the Old Testament the Hebrew word most often translated "treasure" is 'otsar. It occurs in the sing. as follows: Dt 28:12; 1 Ch 29:8; Neh 10:38; Ps 17:14; 135:4; Prov 15:16; 21:20; Eccl 2:8; Isa 33:6; Dan 1:2; Hos 13:15; in the pl.: Dt 32:34; 1 Ki 14:26; 15:18; 2 Ki 12:18; 14:14; 16:8; 18:15; 20:13,15; 24:13, etc.
The same word is in the King James Version translated "treasuries" in 1 Ch 9:26; 28:12; 2 Ch 32:27; Neh 13:12,13; Ps 135:7; and "treasury" in Josh 6:19,24; Jer 38:11.
II. In the New Testament.
There are two words translated "treasure": Gaza is of Persian origin, meaning "treasure." Found only once in Acts 8:27 concerning the Ethiopian "who was over all her (Queen Candace's) treasure." In the compound gazophulakion, "guarding of gaza," the same word appears and the compound is translated "treasury" in Mk 12:41,43 parallel Lk 21:1; Jn 8:20.
See TEMPLE; TREASURY (OF TEMPLE).
The word thesauros means literally, a "deposit," so wealth and treasure. Evidently throughout the New Testament it has a twofold usage as describing (1) material treasure, either money or other valuable material possession, and (2) spiritual treasure, e.g. "like unto treasure hid in a field" (Mt 13:44); "good treasure of the heart" (Mt 12:35). Other references to material treasure are Mt 6:21; 13:52; Lk 12:21,34, etc. References to spiritual treasure are Mt 19:21; Mk 10:21; Lk 6:45; 12:33; 18:22; plural Mt 6:20; Col 2:3.
In Mt 27:6 the word for "treasury" is korbanas; compare the Revised Version margin.
Orr, James, M.A., D.D. General Editor. "Definition for 'treasure; treasurer; treasury'". "International Standard Bible Encyclopedia". bible-history.com - ISBE
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