In the East objects are carried in the bosom which Europeans carry in the pocket. To have in one's bosom indicates kindness, secrecy, or intimacy ( Genesis 16:5 ; 2 Sam 12:8 ). Christ is said to have been in "the bosom of the Father," i.e., he had the most perfect knowledge of the Father, had the closest intimacy with him ( John 1:18 ). ( John 13:23 ) was "leaning on Jesus' bosom" at the last supper. Our Lord carries his lambs in his bosom, i.e., has a tender, watchful care over them ( Isaiah 40:11 ).
In the ordinary signification of the anterior upper portion of the trunk of the body, choq or cheq, "inlet", "lap" (Exodus 4:6,7; Numbers 11:12; Deuteronomy 13:6; 28:54,56; Ruth 4:16; Psalms 74:11; Isaiah 65:6,7; Lamentations 2:12). "A present in the bosom" (Proverbs 21:14):
bribes carried ready for use in the fold of the robe. chetsen = "bosom" (with special reference to that portion of the body which is between the arms), occurs in Psalms 129:7; chobh = "a cherisher," hence, "the bosom" (Job 31:33); tsallachath = something advanced or deep, "a bowl"; figurative "the bosom" (Proverbs 19:24 the King James Version; Proverbs 26:15 the King James Version). The Greek employs kolpos (Luke 6:38; John 13:23). For Abraham's bosom, see separate article.
In a figurative sense it denotes intimacy and unrestrained intercourse (Genesis 16:5; 2 Samuel 12:8); tender care and watchfulness (Isaiah 40:11); closest intimacy and most perfect knowledge (John 1:18); "into their bosom" (Psalms 79:12) indicates the bosom as the seat of thought and reflection.
F. E. Hirsch
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