International Standard Bible Encyclopedia
dub'-'-l (shanah, "to repeat," as in counting; kaphal, "to fold over," or "double," as a cloth): A word used quite frequently in the Old Testament. Jacob ordered his sons to take double money in their hands, i.e. twice the necessary amount (Genesis 43:12, 15). If a thief be caught with a living animal he was to restore double (Exodus 22:4); if property be stolen out of the house of one to whom it is entrusted he was to restore double (Exodus 22:7, 9). The firstborn was to receive a double portion of the inheritance (Deuteronomy 21:17). Likewise also by a beautiful symbol Elisha asked for a double portion of Elijah's spirit to fall upon him (2 Kings 2:9). Degrees of punishment or sufferings were also expressed by the idea of a doubling (Isaiah 61:7 Jeremiah 16:18; Jeremiah 17:18 Zechariah 9:12).