What Are Cubits In The Bible

What Are Cubits In The Bible?

The biblical cubit is a unit of measurement in the Bible. It is an ancient linear measure, usually the length of a man’s forearm, that is used throughout the Bible in a variety of ways. It is most often used for measuring the dimensions of objects such as buildings, altars, vessels, and clothing. The cubit is typically written as a number followed by a unit of measure, such as “10 cubits,” “15 cubits,” etc.

The origin of the cubit is a bit of a mystery. Theories suggest that it may have originated in Ancient Egypt, Mesopotamia, or even Mesoamerica. Some scholars suggest that the ancient measuring tool originated in Egypt, as the cubit was widely used as a unit of measurement in Ancient Egypt, with the Egyptians using it for measuring the Great Pyramid of Giza. However, there is no definitive proof of its origin.

The cubit is mentioned more than 150 times in the Bible and is the primary measurement for the temple of Solomon. Scholars have estimated that the standard cubit was roughly 45 to 54 cm (18 – 21 inches) in length. This estimate, however, is based largely on the dimensions of the temple given in the Bible and extrapolations made from archaeological evidence.

In the Bible, the cubit is most commonly used to measure lengths rather than areas or volumes. For example, when Noah built the ark in the book of Genesis, we’re told that it was “three hundred cubits long, fifty cubits wide, and thirty cubits high” ( Genesis 6:15). Similarly, the altar of burnt offering built by the Israelites during the Exodus was “made of shittim wood, five cubits long and five cubits broad” according to Exodus 27:1.

The biblical cubit has been the subject of much research by archaeologists and historians, both in an attempt to better understand the Bible and in an effort to accurately reconstruct the measurements of ancient artifacts. Using archaeological evidence, scholars have been able to make reasonable estimates of the approximate length of the cubit, although there is still debate about the exact size. However, the cubit remains an integral unit in Biblical archaeology, as it is often used to reconstruct the sizes of ancient objects.

Calculation Of Cubits

Calculating the cubit is rather simple. As previously mentioned, the cubit is traditionally defined as the length of a man’s forearm, from the elbow to the tip of the middle finger. The modern equivalent would be around 21 to 23 inches or roughly 54 to 59 cm, although this measurement varies slightly from person to person.

It is interesting to note that the measurements of some of the most famous structures in the world, such as the Great Pyramid of Giza, coincide quite closely with measurements taken from the biblical cubit. The Great Pyramid, for example, is 756 feet long and 479 feet wide, which is approximately 14,400 cubits long and 8,400 cubits wide. Such facts strengthen the argument for the authenticity of the biblical cubit.

In addition to being used to measure length, cubits can also be used to calculate the area of a shape or object. For example, to calculate the area of a square, one would multiply its length in cubits by its width in cubits to get the total number of square cubits (example: 10 cubits x 10 cubits = 100 square cubits).

How Cubits Are Used Today?

In modern times, the cubit is no longer used as a unit of measure but there are still many people who use the cubit to estimate lengths and areas. Some modern builders still refer to the cubit to estimate the size of a structure or area. The cubit is also used as a measure of length in some sports, such as tennis and racquetball.

In addtion, some religious groups use the cubit as part of their tradition. Some Christian churches use the cubit for measuring the dimensions of altars and other objects. In Judaism, the cubit is used to measure the size of the Tabernacle and other religious objects.

Connection Between Cubits & The Bible

The use of the cubit in the Bible is reflective of how the ancient Hebrews viewed measurement and length. The importance of the cubit in the Bible can be seen throughout, with the most prominent example being in the measurements of the Ark of the Covenant as given in the book of Exodus. This shows the importance of the cubit to the Hebrew people and its prevalence in the Bible.

There are some scholars who believe that the use of the cubit was a way for ancient Hebrews to communicate the power and grandeur of God to their peers. The use of the cubit highlights the grace and glory of God and his omnipresence, no matter how large the structure being measured is. This is a major theme of the Bible, as it reminds readers that God is present and powerful, even in the smallest of matters.


The biblical cubit and its usage in the Bible represent an important aspect of ancient Hebrew culture and measurement. The cubit is still used in some religious and sporting events today, which shows its continuing relevance in modern times. Although its exact origin is not known, it is clear that the biblical cubit has played an important role in the history of measurement.

Marcos Reyna is a Christian author and speaker. He is dedicated to helping create disciples of Christ through spreading the power of the gospel to others. He has written several books and articles on a variety of theological topics, including matters of faith, worship, biblical studies, practical ethics, and social justice. A trained theologian and devotee of spiritual writing, Marcos has a mission to spread Christian love everywhere. He lives with his family in Nashville, TN where he spends his days encouraging others to seek Christ's grace in all things.

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