Sabbath Day’s Walk

A Sabbath Day’s walk is a measurement mentioned several times in the Bible.  It’s distance is approximately 5/8 of a mile or 1 kilometer.  The term came into use because of the legalistic additional laws of the Pharisees.  While the Old Testament instructs us to do no work on the Sabbath, the Pharisees went a step further in defining what constituted as work.  There were many rules concerning what did and did not constitute as work – following all of these rules was probably more work than just following the spirit of the law which was to encourage rest.

A Sabbath’s Day walk was the distance that a person was allowed to walk before it was considered work and thus a person would be considered guilty of breaking the Sabbath.

Talent

A talent is a measure of weight in the Bible that is equal to 75 pounds or 34 kilograms.

It was equivalent to 3,000 shekels.

Archaeological digs have discovered talents weighing between 65 and 80 pounds (29.5 to 36.3 kg) so this would be near the 75 pound measurement.

Talents were only used in the weighing of precious metals, specifically gold and silver.

Solomon received 666 talents a year in tribute to him, which was considered a vast amount.  (1 Kings 10:14)  This pales in comparison to the amount that David bequeathed to Solomon for the building of the temple.  According to 1 Chronicles 22:14 there were 100,000 talents of gold and 1,000,000 talents of silver.

Related Definition: shekel

Span

A span is a Biblical unit of measurement equal to 8.75 inches or 22.2 centimeters.

A span is determined by the measure of a stretched hand, from fingertip to fingertip.  Like the cubit, this is a relative measurement.

A span is the measure of a half cubit.  It is not mentioned often in the Old Testament.  Four of the seven times it is used is in reference to the dimensions of the high priest’s breastplate.

Related Definition: cubit

Shekel

A shekel is a biblical measure of weight equal to .4 ounces or 11.4 grams.

Shekels were the standard unit of weight like the pound or gram is today.

Shekels are typically used in reference with monetary value – silver, gold, barley and flour.  There is an exception to this when speaking about Goliath.  His armor is mentioned to weight 5,000 shekels and his iron spearhead weighed 600 shekels.

For those who are curious but don’t want to do the math, that’s 125 (57 kg) pounds of armor and a 15 pound (6.8 kg) spearhead.