heifer

heifer

A young cow; it was used for plowing (Judg 14:18), trained to thresh grain (Hos 10:11; Jer 50:11; Deut 21:3), and valued for its milk (Isa 7:21). As one of the sacrificial animals (1Sam 16:2), it was divided to ratify a covenant (Gen 15:9), killed to expiate murder by an unknown person (Deut 21:1-9), and burned and its ashes used to counteract uncleanness caused by contact with a corpse (Num 19:1-10; Heb 9:13). The heifer’s beauty was much appreciated, so the word could be used figuratively of a woman (Judg 14:18; the female name Eglah, 1Sam 3:5, is the same word) and of the splendor of Egypt (Jer 46:20). Obedient Ephraim is compared to a trained heifer (Hos 10:11), disobedient Israel to a stubborn one (Hos 4:16).

Judg 14:18

18The men of the town said to him on the seventh day before the sun went down,
“What is sweeter than honey?
What is stronger than a lion?”
And he said to them,
... View more

Hos 10:11

11Ephraim was a trained heifer
that loved to thresh,
and I spared her fair neck;
but I will make Ephraim break the ground;
Judah must plow;
Jacob must harrow fo ... View more

Jer 50:11

11Though you rejoice, though you exult,
O plunderers of my heritage,
though you frisk about like a heifer on the grass,
and neigh like stallions,

Deut 21:3

3The elders of the town nearest the body shall take a heifer that has never been worked, one that has not pulled in the yoke;

Isa 7:21

21On that day one will keep alive a young cow and two sheep,

1Sam 16:2

2Samuel said, “How can I go? If Saul hears of it, he will kill me.” And the Lord said, “Take a heifer with you, and say, ‘I have come to sacrifice to the Lord.’

Gen 15:9

9He said to him, “Bring me a heifer three years old, a female goat three years old, a ram three years old, a turtledove, and a young pigeon.”

Deut 21:1-9

Law concerning Murder by Persons Unknown
1If, in the land that the Lord your God is giving you to possess, a body is found lying in open country, and it is not ... View more

Num 19:1-10

Ceremony of the Red Heifer
1The Lord spoke to Moses and Aaron, saying:2This is a statute of the law that the Lord has commanded: Tell the Israelites to bring yo ... View more

Heb 9:13

13For if the blood of goats and bulls, with the sprinkling of the ashes of a heifer, sanctifies those who have been defiled so that their flesh is purified,

Judg 14:18

18The men of the town said to him on the seventh day before the sun went down,
“What is sweeter than honey?
What is stronger than a lion?”
And he said to them,
... View more

1Sam 3:5

5and ran to Eli, and said, “Here I am, for you called me.” But he said, “I did not call; lie down again.” So he went and lay down.

Jer 46:20

20A beautiful heifer is Egypt—
a gadfly from the north lights upon her.

Hos 10:11

11Ephraim was a trained heifer
that loved to thresh,
and I spared her fair neck;
but I will make Ephraim break the ground;
Judah must plow;
Jacob must harrow fo ... View more

Hos 4:16

16Like a stubborn heifer,
Israel is stubborn;
can the Lord now feed them
like a lamb in a broad pasture?

 NEH Logo
Bible Odyssey has been made possible in part by the National Endowment for the Humanities: Exploring the human endeavor
Any views, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this website, do not necessarily represent those of the National Endowment for the Humanities.