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International Standard Bible Encyclopedia

plou (charash; arotrioo): No implement of the Bible is more frequently illustrated today than the plow. This is partly because there is every reason to believe that the plows still used throughout Egypt, Palestine, and Syria are counterparts of the ancient ones. The first plows were probably an adaptation of the ancient Egyptian hoe, where the handle was lengthened in order that animals might be hitched to it. To make it easier to break up the ground, it was pointed, and handles were added by which it could be guided. The ancient plow probably varied in type in different sections of the country, as it does today. In one form a young tree Of oak or other strong wood of a diameter of 3 or 4 inches is cut off just below a good-sized branch and again 15 or 20 inches above. The upper end of the severed trunk is pointed and forms the share. Between this and the side branch is fitted a brace. The branch is cut off 10 or 12 ft. from the trunk and forms the pole. A lighter stick, about 3 ft. long, projects upward from the share and forms the handle. The plow used in Syria is of slightly different construction. The handle and share are one continuous piece, so cut that there is a slight bend at the middle. The share is pointed and is used bare in the plains, or in more stony regions is shod with iron. The pole is of 2 pieces joined end to end. The thicker end of the pole is notched, so that it may be attached firmly to the share. The whole plow is so light that it can be easily carried on a man's shoulder. These plows literally scratch the soil, as the Hebrew word implies. They do not turn over the ground as the modern implement does. The plowman guides the plow with one hand, and with the other sometimes goads the oxen, and at other times with the chisel end of his goad breaks away the lumps of earth or other material which impedes the progress of his plow.


In addition to the words which are found above, the following terms occur: `abhadh (literally, "to serve"), "worked" or "plowed" (Deuteronomy 21:4); palach (literally, "to break open," Psalm 141:7).

One special law is mentioned in connection with plowing, namely that an ox and an ass should not be yoked together (Deuteronomy 22:10), a prohibition which is utterly disregarded today. Oxen were principally used for plowing (Job 1:14). Often several yokes of oxen followed each other plowing parallel furrows across the field, a sight still common on the plains of Syria (1 Kings 19:19). Plowing was done by bond servants (Luke 17:7; compare `abhadh, Deuteronomy 21:4). Plowing cannot be done before the rains (Jeremiah 14:4); on the other hand the soil is too sticky to plow in the winter time (Proverbs 20:4). The law requiring one day of rest in every seven days included plowing time (Exodus 34:21).

Figurative: "The plowers plowed upon my back" typified deep affliction (Psalm 129:3; compare Psalm 141:7). "Plow iniquity" is urged in the sense of "plant iniquity." Doing evil was sure to bring evil consequences (Job 4:8; compare Micah 3:12). As surely as planting comes after plowing, so surely will Yahweh carry out His decree of destruction (Isaiah 28:23-25). "Judah shall plow," i.e. become enslaved (Hosea 10:11); compare "Foreigners shall be your plowmen" (Isaiah 61:5). "Will one plow there with oxen?" (Amos 6:12), "neither plowing nor harvest" (Genesis 45:6) are figures of desolation. Zion plowed as a field, i.e. utterly destroyed (Jeremiah 26:18). The plowman shall overtake the reaper, i.e. the soil shall be so fertile as to require no rest-typical of great abundance (Amos 9:13). No opportunity to plow because of lack of rain is a desolate picture of drought (Jeremiah 14:4). As the plowman expects to share in the fruits of the harvest, so might an apostle expect his temporal needs to be provided for (1 Corinthians 9:10). "If ye had not plowed with my heifer," i.e. used my wife, was Samson's reply to those who had secured the answer to his riddle from her (Judges 14:18). "Beat their swords into plowshares" (or hoes) (Isaiah 2:4 Micah 4:3) typified peace; "beat your plowshares into swords"-war (Joel 3:10). "Having put his hand to the plow, and looking back," i.e. longing for evil things when one has set his face toward doing what is right, unfits a man for the kingdom of God (Luke 9:62; compare Genesis 19:26 Philippians 3:13).

James A. Patch

723. arotron -- a plow
... arotron. 724 . a plow. Part of Speech: Noun, Neuter Transliteration: arotron Phonetic
Spelling: (ar'-ot-ron) Short Definition: a plow Definition: a plow. ...
// - 6k

722. arotriao -- to plow
... arotriao. 723 . to plow. Part of Speech: Verb Transliteration: arotriao Phonetic
Spelling: (ar-ot-ree-o'-o) Short Definition: I plow Definition: I plow. ...
// - 6k

2086. heterozugeo -- to be yoked up differently, ie to be ...
... 2086 (from 2087 , "another of a kind" and 2218 , "a yoke, joining two to a single
plow") -- properly, of people together ; hence "unequally yoked" (not aptly ...
// - 7k

Strong's Hebrew
2790a. charash -- to cut in, engrave, plow, devise
... 2790, 2790a. charash. 2790b . to cut in, engrave, plow, devise.
Transliteration: charash Short Definition: plow. Word Origin a prim. ...
/hebrew/2790a.htm - 5k

2790. charash -- to cut in, engrave, plow, devise
... 2789, 2790. charash. 2790a . to cut in, engrave, plow, devise. Transliteration:
charash Phonetic Spelling: (khaw-rash') Short Definition: altogether. ...
/hebrew/2790.htm - 6k

3009. yagab -- to till, be a husbandman
... root Definition to till, be a husbandman NASB Word Usage plowmen (2). husbandman.
A primitive root; to dig or plow -- husbandman. 3008, 3009. yagab. 3010 . ...
/hebrew/3009.htm - 5k


we Plow the Fields, and Scatter
... IV. SPECIAL OCCASIONS Thanksgiving Day 423. We plow the fields, and scatter., refrain ... Tr. Jane M. Campbell, 1861. We plow the fields, and scatter. ...
/.../thanksgiving day 423 we plow.htm

Definiteness of Purpose in Christian Work
... And in the expression concerning the man having put his hand to the plow and looking
back we have one of the strongest illustrations that Jesus ever used. ...
/.../chapman/and judas iscariot/definiteness of purpose in christian.htm

The Call of Elisha
... A man may be in the active service of God while engaged in the ordinary, everyday
duties"while felling trees, clearing the ground, or following the plow. ...
/.../white/the story of prophets and kings/chapter 17 the call of.htm

The Jewish Girl
... And he read of a Hungarian knight, taken captive by a Turkish pasha, who had him
yoked with oxen to the plow; and he was driven with lashes, and had to suffer ...
/.../wells/bible stories and religious classics/the jewish girl.htm

The First Stages. Ch. 9:51 to 13:21
... thee, Lord; but first suffer me to bid farewell to them that are at my house.62
But Jesus said unto him, No man, having put his hand to the plow, and looking ...
/.../erdman/the gospel of luke an exposition/a the first stages ch.htm

Later English Reformers.
... than the pope's." Tyndale replied, "I defy the pope and all his laws; and if God
spare my life, ere many years I will cause a boy that driveth the plow to know ...
/.../the great controversy between christ and satan /14 later english reformers.htm

Later English Reformers
... than the pope's." Tyndale replied: "I defy the pope and all his laws; and if God
spare my life, ere many years I will cause a boy that driveth the plow to know ...
/.../white/the great controversy/chapter 14 later english reformers.htm

... he is obliged to fix his eyes on a tree, or a post in the fence, or some object
at the farther end of the field, and to guide his plow unwaveringly toward that ...
/.../smith/the god of all comfort/chapter 10 self-examination.htm

Awake! Awake!
... The farmer can not plow his field in his sleep, neither can he cast the grain
into the furrows, nor watch the clouds, nor reap his harvest. ...
/.../ sermons volume 3 1857/awake awake.htm

Sown among Thorns
... thing as conviction of sin. The great subsoil plow of soul-anguish was
used to tear deep into the soul. Fire also burned in the ...
/.../spurgeon/spurgeons sermons volume 34 1888/sown among thorns.htm

Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
1. (n.) Alt. of Plough.

2. (v. t.) Alt. of Plough.

3. (v. i.) Alt. of Plough.

Plow (11 Occurrences)
... of Plough. Int. Standard Bible Encyclopedia. PLOW. plou (charash; arotrioo): No
implement of the Bible is more frequently illustrated today than the plow. ...
/p/plow.htm - 15k

Plow-shares (3 Occurrences)
Plow-shares. Plowshares, Plow-shares. Pluck . Multi-Version
Concordance Plow-shares (3 Occurrences). Isaiah 2:4 And ...
/p/plow-shares.htm - 7k

Plough (11 Occurrences)
... 1. (n. & v.) See Plow. ... 8. (vt) To turn up, break up, or trench, with a plow; to till
with, or as with, a plow; as, to plow the ground; to plow a field. ...
/p/plough.htm - 11k

Furrow (3 Occurrences)
... 1. (n.) A trench in the earth made by, or as by, a plow. ... 3. (n.) To cut a furrow
in; to make furrows in; to plow; as, to furrow the ground or sea. ...
/f/furrow.htm - 9k

Ridge (3 Occurrences)
... 3. (n.) A raised line or strip, as of ground thrown up by a plow or left between
furrows or ditches, or as on the surface of metal, cloth, or bone, etc. ...
/r/ridge.htm - 8k

Plowing (9 Occurrences)
... 1 Samuel 8:12 also to appoint for himself heads of thousands, and heads of fifties;
also to plow his plowing, and to reap his reaping; and to make instruments ...
/p/plowing.htm - 9k

Plows (3 Occurrences)
... Yes, it was written for our sake, because he who plows ought to plow in hope, and
he who threshes in hope should partake of his hope. (WEB NIV). ...
/p/plows.htm - 7k

Plowman (3 Occurrences)
... yes, because of us it was written, because in hope ought the plower to plow, and
he who is treading 'ought' of his hope to partake in hope. (See NAS RSV NIV). ...
/p/plowman.htm - 7k

Clods (7 Occurrences)
... (DBY). Isaiah 28:24 Does he who plows to sow plow continually? ... I will set a rider
on Ephraim. Judah will plow. Jacob will break his clods. ...
/c/clods.htm - 8k

Acre (1 Occurrence)
... Then it came to denote the measure of land that an ox team could plow in a day,
and upon the basis of a maximum acre of this kind the standard acre of 160 ...
/a/acre.htm - 9k

Bible Concordance
Plow (11 Occurrences)

Luke 9:62 But Jesus said to him, "No one, having put his hand to the plow, and looking back, is fit for the Kingdom of God."

1 Corinthians 9:10 or does he say it assuredly for our sake? Yes, it was written for our sake, because he who plows ought to plow in hope, and he who threshes in hope should partake of his hope.

Deuteronomy 22:10 You shall not plow with an ox and a donkey together.

1 Samuel 8:12 and he will appoint them to him for captains of thousands, and captains of fifties; and he will set some to plow his ground, and to reap his harvest, and to make his instruments of war, and the instruments of his chariots.

1 Samuel 14:14 And that first slaughter, which Jonathan and his armourbearer made, was about twenty men, within as it were an half acre of land, which a yoke of oxen might plow.

Job 4:8 According to what I have seen, those who plow iniquity, and sow trouble, reap the same.

Proverbs 20:4 The sluggard will not plow by reason of the winter; therefore he shall beg in harvest, and have nothing.

Isaiah 28:24 Does he who plows to sow plow continually? Does he keep turning the soil and breaking the clods?

Isaiah 30:24 The oxen likewise and the young asses that plow the ground shall eat clean provender, which hath been winnowed with the shovel and with the fan.

Hosea 10:11 Ephraim is a trained heifer that loves to thresh; so I will put a yoke on her beautiful neck. I will set a rider on Ephraim. Judah will plow. Jacob will break his clods.

Amos 6:12 Do horses run on the rocky crags? Does one plow there with oxen? But you have turned justice into poison, and the fruit of righteousness into bitterness;



Plow by Job's Servants

Plow of Afflictions

Plow used by Elisha With Twelve Yoke (Pairs) of Oxen

Plow: Shares of, Sharpened by the Smiths of the Philistines

Related Terms

Plow-shares (3 Occurrences)

Plough (11 Occurrences)

Furrow (3 Occurrences)

Ridge (3 Occurrences)

Plowing (9 Occurrences)

Plows (3 Occurrences)

Plowman (3 Occurrences)

Clods (7 Occurrences)

Acre (1 Occurrence)

Stiffnecked (9 Occurrences)

Stiff-necked (18 Occurrences)

Reap (35 Occurrences)

Cold (25 Occurrences)

Plowed (9 Occurrences)

Share (138 Occurrences)

Sow (61 Occurrences)



Pluck (41 Occurrences)

Use (620 Occurrences)

Winter (22 Occurrences)

Weapons (66 Occurrences)

Implements (7 Occurrences)

Fifties (13 Occurrences)

Fallow (5 Occurrences)

Thresh (7 Occurrences)

Till (774 Occurrences)

Threshes (1 Occurrence)

Rafter (1 Occurrence)

Rocky (14 Occurrences)

Ere (14 Occurrences)

Ear (670 Occurrences)

Equipment (13 Occurrences)

Mole (2 Occurrences)

Ploughshares (3 Occurrences)

Partake (19 Occurrences)

Ploweth (2 Occurrences)

Ploughshare (1 Occurrence)

Plowshares (5 Occurrences)

Ploughman (2 Occurrences)

Beam (17 Occurrences)

Begs (3 Occurrences)

Breast (71 Occurrences)

Commanders (93 Occurrences)

Colter (1 Occurrence)

Charioteer (3 Occurrences)

Crags (10 Occurrences)

Armourbearer (14 Occurrences)

Assuredly (31 Occurrences)

Armor-bearer (15 Occurrences)

Sluggard (14 Occurrences)

Start (50 Occurrences)

Sole (13 Occurrences)

Seasons (43 Occurrences)

Standard (42 Occurrences)

Sheth (2 Occurrences)

Fit (47 Occurrences)

Wormwood (10 Occurrences)

Samson (37 Occurrences)

Reaping (10 Occurrences)

Captains (159 Occurrences)

Instruments (136 Occurrences)

Service (317 Occurrences)

Mischief (64 Occurrences)

Rider (26 Occurrences)

Half-acre (1 Occurrence)

Gall (17 Occurrences)

Yoke (79 Occurrences)

Poison (17 Occurrences)

Ride (31 Occurrences)

Thousands (65 Occurrences)

Chariots (118 Occurrences)

Trained (37 Occurrences)

Army (401 Occurrences)


Bitterness (37 Occurrences)

Soil (59 Occurrences)

Donkey (84 Occurrences)

Breaking (69 Occurrences)

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