[C6] The Repetition Principle

If a phrase or a concept or a non trivial word is repeated in an account then that word or phrase or concept has a key greater symbolic meaning.

For God speaks once and twice - though one does not regard it (Job 33:14).
But one should regard it!!

Phrases do not have to be repeated word for word to qualify, but must be conceptually the same in the second recital. If a non trivial word is not repeated it may nonetheless have a greater symbolic meaning, but this meaning is not essential to grasp the symbolism of the account. Even though all scripture has a greater symbolic meaning some words and phrases are invariant in this larger meaning. By this we mean that these particular words and phrases mean exactly the same in both the literal meaning and the symbolic meaning. These invariant words are generally adjectives and verbs.

Joseph says referring to the two similar dreams of Pharaoh:

And the fact that the dream was repeated to Pharaoh twice means that the thing is firmly established on the part of the [true] God, and the [true] God is speeding to do it (Genesis 41:32).

And so to repeat the dream to Pharaoh two times, because being decided upon by the God and being soon to do him (Genesis 41:32 - NIVHEOT Hebrew Interlinear Bible)

But the whole bible is a dream, in the sense that bible writers spoke under inspiration not from their subconscious mind but from God. So what Joseph is saying is:

If any inspired scripture is repeated twice then, the thing is decided upon by God and God will do it soon.

Our Historical mistakes in trying to understand Joseph's words

Our first interpretation of this verse, which is quite obviously explaining the meaning of a repeated scripture in an account, was that a repetition meant a further fulfillment. This was a correct interpretation, but it became meaningless when we realised that every scripture had a further fulfillment whether it was repeated or not. Our second interpretation of Joseph’s definition of the meaning of a repeated scripture was that two recitals meant two fulfillments or two greater meanings. This interpretation relied on the argument that a future fulfillment of a future fulfillment is a second future fulfillment. But this argument is false. A future fulfillment of a future fulfillment can be the first future fulfillment. A second fulfillment is not required. So our logic was false. Another problem with this interpretation was that 11 recitals would have to mean 11 fulfillments and that does not work.

Our current understanding of the meaning of the Repetition Principle

Since we know that every scripture has a greater fulfillment, a further symbolic meaning, we need to know where to start in trying to determine what this symbolic meaning might be. We need to know the key symbolism of the account. Well as regards the repeated words or phrases, Joseph has said that God has decided upon them. But it is not as if there are some scriptures that God has not yet made up his mind about. He has quite obviously decided upon every scripture or it wouldn’t be in the bible. So why are we being told that God has decided upon repetitions? In what sense has he decided upon them in particular? Well, he has decided upon them for the greater meaning, the symbolic meaning, the further fulfillment, the fulfillment that he is speeding to do, the fulfillment that God is 'being soon to do'. These scriptures are the key symbolic elements of the account, the decisive symbolism in the greater meaning of the account. If you can find the correct symbolism for the repeated elements of an account then the rest of the symbolism falls into place. The repeated words or phrases in an account are where you start your symbolic search.

Jesus actually confirms that this interpretation of Joseph’s explanation of a repetition is true in Matthew 13:24-30, in the account of the wheat and the weeds:

Another illustration he set before them, saying: The kingdom of the heavens has become like a man that sowed fine seed in his field.
While men were sleeping, his enemy came and oversowed weeds in among the wheat, and left.
When the blade sprouted and produced fruit, then the weeds appeared also.
So the slaves of the householder came up and said to him: Master, did you not sow fine seed in your field? How, then, does it come to have weeds?
He said to them: An enemy, a man, did this.
They said to him: Do you want us, then, to go out and collect them?
He said: No, that by no chance, while collecting the weeds, you uproot the wheat with them.
Let both grow together until the harvest; and in the harvest season I will tell the reapers, First collect the weeds and bind them in bundles to burn them up, then go to gathering the wheat into my storehouse
(Matthew 13:24-30).

When Jesus decodes the account of the wheat and the weeds for his disciples, providing the following symbolic look up table, he provides greater meanings only for (some of) the repeated words in the original account:

The sower of the fine seed

is the Son of man

The field

is the world

As for the fine seed

these are the sons of the Kingdom

but the weeds

are the sons of the wicked one

and the enemy that sowed them

is the Devil

The harvest

is a conclusion of a system of things

and the reapers

are the angels

Therefore, just as the weeds are collected and burned with fire, so it will be in the conclusion of the system of things (Matthew 13:36-40).

Every word or phrase that Jesus gives a greater meaning for is a repeated word or phrase in the original parable in Matthew 13:24-30, with the exception of ‘reapers' which only appears once. But the word ‘collect’, which is what the reapers do, is repeated.

So to decode an account first look for repeated phrases, and then for repeated words and ponder over what their symbolic meaning could be. Once the key symbolism is realised the rest falls into place - eventually!

In summary: If a phrase or a concept or a non trivial word is repeated in an account then that word or phrase has a key greater symbolic meaning. If a non trivial word is not repeated it may nonetheless have a greater symbolic meaning, but this meaning is not essential to grasp the symbolism of the account. Even though all scripture has a greater symbolic meaning some words and phrases are invariant in this larger meaning. By this we mean that these particular words mean the same in the literal meaning as they do in the symbolic meaning. These invariant words are generally adjectives and verbs.

These repetitions in the case of a phrase do not have to be word for word, because Amos has said:

Will two walk together unless they have met by appointment?

Will a lion roar in a forest when it has no prey?
Will a young maned lion give forth its voice from its hiding place if it has caught nothing at all?

Will a bird fall into a trap on the earth when there is no snare for it?
Does a trap go up from the ground when it has absolutely caught nothing?

If a horn is blown in a city, do not also the people themselves tremble? 
If a calamity occurs in the city is it not also Jehovah who has acted/caused

For the sovereign Lord Jehovah will not do a thing unless he has revealed his confidential matter/secret to his servants, the prophets

There is a lion that has roared! Who will not be afraid?
The sovereign Lord Jehovah himself has spoken who will not prophesy?
(Amos 3:3-8)

The forest is the hiding place of the lion, the roar is the giving forth of its voice, if it has caught nothing then it has no prey. These repeated concepts in slightly different words are how the sovereign Lord Jehovah reveals his confidential matters, his secrets to his servants the prophets today. A repeated recital does not need to use exactly the same words! Incidentally God causes every calamity and every good thing, being behind it all. But he does not directly cause every calamity or every good thing.

A Simple Example of the Repetition Principle

The last creative act of God, on the day that Adam sinned was:

And Jehovah God proceeded to make long garments of skin for Adam and for his wife and to clothe them (Genesis 3:21).
The literal meaning is that God was their tailor. One consequence of this is that it is not a sin for women to wear fur coats. Because Adam and Eve were vegetarians when God killed the animal for it's skin. But the concept of clothing them is repeated, being recited first in terms of making long garments. So there is a greater way in which God clothed them. This greater way was that he created new bodies for them which instead of being indefinitely long lasting bodies which did not age, as were their previous bodies in the garden, were just long lasting, and were ageing. Adam lived for 930 years (Genesis 5:5). So these new ageing bodies, shorter versions of which we all inhabit today, were their long garments of skin as it were.

A Second Simple Example of the Repetition Principle

However, let this one fact not be escaping your notice, beloved ones, that one day is with Jehovah as a thousand years and a thousand years as one day (2 Peter 3:8).
In the literal meaning, God lives forever, and so to him one day is just like 1,000 years. But this phrase is repeated, and so by the Repetition Principle, there is a greater way in which one day is as 1,000 years to God. This greater way is that one day represents 1,000 years in some scriptures.

And you must lie upon your right side in the second case, and you must carry the error of the house of Judah forty days. A day for a year, a day for a year, is what I have given you (Ezekiel 4:6).
In the literal meaning, the 40 days of Ezekiels laying on his right side represents 40 years or error of the house of Judah. But in the greater meaning, we know that the phrase: 'A day for a year' has a greater meaning. This meaning is that God has given 'a day for a year' to all would be Ezekiel's, 'prophets' who want to interpret the bible. A day for a year is an acceptable substitution and may give you the correct interpretation of any scripture in the symbolic meaning. It is a symbolism that God uses, we are being told.

A Third Simple Example of the Repetition Principle

In the midst of the years oh bring it to life, in the midst of the years may you make it known (Habakkuk 3:2).

Bringing it to life refers to the resurrection of Jesus, and making it known likewise refers to his death which is the salvation plan of God, which Jesus made known - by dying. Now in the literal meaning we have his resurrection and his death in the midst of 'the years'. In the symbolic meaning, since the phrase 'in the midst of the years' is repeated, it has a different meaning to that which it has in the literal meaning. 

Now the Hebrew word for 'midst' is brq which can mean either amongst or middle. So in the literal meaning it must mean one and in the symbolic meaning the other. So however you look at it, Jesus died and was resurrected in the middle of 'the years'. For the full story see - The Midst Prophecy.

An Obvious example of the Repetition Principle

Consequently the Egyptians made the sons of Israel slave under tyranny.
And they kept making their life bitter with hard slavery at clay mortar and bricks
and with every form of slavery in the field.
Yes, every form of slavery of theirs in which they used them as
slaves under tyranny
(Exodus 1:13,14).
This is just included to show the reader how repetitive a bible account can be!

The First Examples of the Repetition Principle in the Bible - Deep !

Now the earth proved to be formless and waste, and there was darkness on the surface of the deep, and God’s spirit was moving to and fro over the surface of the waters (Genesis 1:2).

The surface of the deep is a repeated concept. The literal meaning is the surface of the seas on the earth, the symbolic meaning is the faces or the characters of the angels in the heavens (the Hebrew word translated surface, means face). For Genesis 1 is not just the story of the creation of the earth and of men, it is also the story of the creation of the heavens and of the angels, like it says in the first line of the bible: even the first 7 Hebrew words:

In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth (Genesis 1:1).

Then we read:

Now the earth proved to be formless and waste and there was darkness upon the surface of [the] watery deep. And God's active force was moving to and fro over the surface of the waters (Genesis 1:2).

Then God said:

Let there be light. Then there was light (Genesis 1:3).

This is a big scripture, and it is the second example of a repeated phrase in the bible, the existence of light being repeated.

Firstly it was said after the earth had been created, since we have already read how there was darkness on the surface of the oceans in verse 2. The literal meaning of this statement is therefore a second physical creation of physical light. Because we know that light was around before the earth was created.

But the symbolic meaning, the greater meaning, is actually the creation of a spiritual form of illumination which is time. This creation of time, was the means by which God could hold his angels to account. For without time, angels could misbehave and then ‘undo’ their works in some sense. But time is what condemns bad works and praises good works. This big bang therefore illuminated the faces of the angels (not that they have physical faces), but their characters were exposed. Hence we read:

After that God saw that the light was good, and God brought about a division between the light and the darkness. And God began calling the light Day and the darkness he called Night. And there came to be evening and there came to be morning, a first day (Genesis 1:5).

The light shows up good and bad. Light representing good and darkness representing bad. The symbolism of the account of the first ‘day’ of creation of Genesis 1 is:




God’s heavenly administration

Surface of Waters

Characters of angels


Invariant adjective


Invariant adjective



So our two repeated phrases: the surface of the waters, and the existence of light, are the two key symbolisms of the account. The former means the characters of the angels and the latter means the creation of Time, which from our knowledge of Physics was the creation of space time, i.e. it was the Big Bang.

God has reset the speed of light !

Now we are in a position to try and solve the problems of modern physics and the dilemma of the Big Bang not producing enough background radiation. And we are in a position to discredit the erroneous belief that the universe has been around for billions of years. There have been two forms of light in the history of the universe. The universe was created with one form of light and then before man came along another form of light was created. Putting this in simple terms, the universe was created in warp drive and then light slowed down to 300 million metres per second just before man appeared (actually to trap man in his playpen, the solar system, until he grew up). Yes the speed of light is a constant. But it is a constant set by God. A constant that was reset by the command:

Let there be light.

It might have been 300 billion or 300 trillion or 300 billion trillion metres per second before this command. Amen. For a fuller account of this, see section [234]. God will reset the speed of light again in the future to enable us to reach every star in the universe, like Anakin Skywalker said. But he will not do this until we have grown up. It is not man who will invent warp drive in order to beat God. It is God who invented it in order to create the universe and in order to teach us. It is God who took the universe out of warp drive, for us, and for the angels, since they learn through us, and we through them, for they are our brothers. For we are moral minors and technological teenagers. It is no coincidence that one cannot explain this fundamental feature of the universe without admitting the existence of God.

This sort of realisation is the power of the Repetition Principle.

The Repetition Principle can be deduced to some extent from the Power Principle. Because if a phrase is repeated in an account, then it has no power in the literal meaning, because it is saying nothing new. The only way for it to have power is for it to mean something different in the greater meaning. So by the Power Principle, this must be the case. It must indeed have a greater meaning in the greater meaning.