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Bethel meaning

בית־אל
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🔼The name Bethel in the Bible

There are two Bethels mentioned in the Bible. One is a town in Simeon (1 Samuel 30:27). The other is the town that would fall within the borders of Benjamin (Judges 21:19).

That Bethel was named so by Jacob after he sees his famous vision in which a ladder reaches into the heavens. Before that event this town was known as Luz (Genesis 28:19). Long before Jacob, Abraham dwelled there too (Genesis 12:8). And long after, the judge Samuel held court in Bethel (1 Samuel 7:15). Bethel is also the location of the gruesome scene in which two bears kill 42 boys after they mocked the prophet Elisha (2 Kings 2:23; see for a discussion of that scene our Biblical commentary).

🔼Etymology of the name Bethel

The name Bethel consists of two elements. The first part of the name is the word בית (bayit), meaning house:

Abarim Publications' Theological Dictionary

Loading: בית (or click this link)

The second part is אל (El), the common abbreviation of Elohim, the Hebrew word for God:

Abarim Publications' Theological Dictionary

Loading: אל (or click this link)

🔼Bethel meaning

The name Bethel means House Of God.

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