What Does the Bible Teach About Crystals?


When people think of crystals, they often imagine a colorful, glass-like mineral that has both flat and rigid surfaces. Some people like the look of crystals so much that they use them to decorate their homes. Others wear them as jewelry. Some people have metaphysical beliefs about crystals, too. So what does the Bible teach about them?

The Bible mentions crystals but doesn’t teach that there are any spiritual or mystical qualities about them. The belief that crystals have metaphysical importance, like the ability to heal, is a modern view that the New Age movement has popularized. The Bible considers such views to be false teaching.

What Bible verses mention crystals? What do they say? What do New Age teachings say about crystals? Why is the New Age use of crystals growing in popularity? Keep reading to learn the answers to these questions and others.

crystals
What does the book of Revelation say about crystals? See below

What Bible verses mention crystals?

The Bible mentions many different types of minerals, including precious stones, metals, and common minerals like salt and sulfur. The precious stones the Bible mentions include agate, amethyst, beryl, carnelian, chalcedony, chrysolite, emerald, ruby, sapphire, turquoise, and crystal.

The Bible mentions crystals in Job 28:17, Revelation 4:6, 21:11, and 22:1 (see below). The Old Testament word translated as “crystal” is derived from the Hebrew word for “bright.” The New Testament word translated as “crystal” is derived from the Greek word for “ice.”

Job 28:17

Job 28 is a poem about wisdom. The theme of the chapter is where people can find wisdom. Although crystal is known for its beauty, the Bible teaches that wisdom from God is more valuable than it. The table below shows that some translations render the word “crystal,” while others choose the word “glass.”

TranslationsJob 28:17
ESVGold and glass cannot equal it, nor can it be exchanged for jewels of fine gold.
KJVThe gold and the crystal cannot equal it: and the exchange of it shall not be for jewels of fine gold.
NASB“Gold or glass cannot equal it, Nor can it be exchanged for articles of fine gold.
NIVNeither gold nor crystal can compare with it, nor can it be had for jewels of gold.
NLTWisdom is more valuable than gold and crystal. It cannot be purchased with jewels mounted in fine gold.
pink and yellow crystals
What does the New Age movement teach about crystals? See below

Revelation 4:6

In Revelation 4-5, John records a vision of heaven in which God is seated on the throne of the universe. Around the throne was a sea of glass that resembled crystal. The comparison to crystal conveys the beauty and worthiness of God’s nature, character, and plan for the world.

New Testament scholar Robert Mounce writes, “We are intended to understand [crystal] as a visual phenomenon that adds to the awesome splendor of the throne-room scene.”

He continues: “Its crystal surface stretches out before the throne, reflecting the flashing, many-colored light from the throne, furnishing a surface for the activity around the throne, and creating for the Seer an unspeakably heightened sense of the transcendence and majesty of God.” [1]

TranslationsRevelation 4:6
ESVand before the throne there was as it were a sea of glass, like crystal. And around the throne, on each side of the throne, are four living creatures, full of eyes in front and behind:
KJVAnd before the throne there was a sea of glass like unto crystal: and in the midst of the throne, and round about the throne, were four beasts full of eyes before and behind.
NASBand before the throne there was something like a sea of glass, like crystal; and in the center and around the throne, four living creatures full of eyes in front and behind.
NIVAlso in front of the throne there was what looked like a sea of glass, clear as crystal. In the center, around the throne, were four living creatures, and they were covered with eyes, in front and in back.
NLTIn front of the throne was a shiny sea of glass, sparkling like crystal. In the center and around the throne were four living beings, each covered with eyes, front and back.

Revelation 21:11

Revelation 21:1-22:5 describes the coming of the New Creation at the end of time. The mention of crystals in the description has a similar purpose to its use in 4:6.

  • 21:1-8 describes the New Heavens and New Earth
  • 21:9-27 describes the New Jerusalem
  • 22:1-5 describes the restoration of Eden
TranslationsRevelation 21:11
ESVhaving the glory of God, its radiance like a most rare jewel, like a jasper, clear as crystal.
KJVHaving the glory of God: and her light was like unto a stone most precious, even like a jasper stone, clear as crystal;
NASBhaving the glory of God. Her brilliance was like a very costly stone, as a stone of crystal-clear jasper.
NIVIt shone with the glory of God, and its brilliance was like that of a very precious jewel, like a jasper, clear as crystal.
NLTIt shone with the glory of God and sparkled like a precious stone — like jasper as clear as crystal.

Revelation 22:1

As noted above, crystal is mentioned in the passage John writes about the restoration of Eden.

TranslationsRevelation 22:1
ESVThen the angel showed me the river of the water of life, bright as crystal, flowing from the throne of God and of the Lamb
KJVAnd he shewed me a pure river of water of life, clear as crystal, proceeding out of the throne of God and of the Lamb.
NASBThen he showed me a river of the water of life, clear as crystal, coming from the throne of God and of the Lamb
NIVThen the angel showed me the river of the water of life, as clear as crystal, flowing from the throne of God and of the Lamb
NLTThen the angel showed me a river with the water of life, clear as crystal, flowing from the throne of God and of the Lamb.
Holy Bible
New Age teaching doesn’t align with the Bible

Does crystal have spiritual or mystical qualities?

The Bible doesn’t teach that crystals have any metaphysical qualities, abilities, or applications. The Bible mentions crystals because it’s a beautiful part of God’s creation even when found naturally in the world. As a beautiful part of God’s creation, it points to the beauty and wisdom of the Creator.

What is the New Age movement? The New Age movement is a trend of spiritual teachings that dates to the 1970s. New Age teaching can vary from teacher to teacher, but they often include the belief in reincarnation, astrology, and trends found in the self-help movement. The tenets of New Age teaching don’t align with the Bible, and most Christians consider it a false religion.

What do New Age teachings say about crystals? There are numerous versions of New Age teachings about crystals. One common idea that most teachings espouse is the belief that crystals have healing properties. Strategically placing crystals in a room and placing them on the body are two examples of how people try to harness their healing powers.

Why is the New Age use of crystals growing in popularity? Celebrities and influencers are driving the trend. Crystals are associated with trends in fashion, like jewelry. The healing properties people believe they possess have been associated with the self-help movement. And New Age philosophies are institution-less spiritual systems that some people find appealing.

References:
[1] Revelation, NICNT, p. 122-123.

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