What is a Field?
The Hebrew word translated "field" conveys a contrary idea to ours, inasmuch as it implies the absence of enclosure. Thus the "field" is often contrasted with portions of land that are enclosed, such as a vineyard, Ex 22:5; Lev 25:3-4; a garden or a walled town, Deut 28:3,Deut 28:16; "unwalled villages or scattered houses ranked in the eye of the law as fields." Lev 25:31. "Field "means the open country apart from habitations, in Gen 25:27; Gen 37:15. Stones were used to separate one plot of ground from another; curses were threatened for removing these landmarks. Deut 19:14; Deut 27:1;Job 24:2; Prov 22:28. If such unfenced fields were pasture grounds, the herd or flock would require constant watching. Ex 22:5. A piece of ground of any size, from the mere land around a cave, Gen 23:13,Gen 23:17, to an entire inheritance, Ruth 4:5, was called a "field." In the N.T. the Greek for "fields" occasionally means farm-houses or hamlets, in distinction from villages and towns, but in the A.V. it is rendered "country." Mark 5:14; Mark 6:36,Mark 6:56. The knowledge of these unenclosed fields throws light upon the parable of the Sower. Some of the seed scattered as he draws near the end of his lot is certain to fall beyond the ploughed portion, and the birds will devour it. Again, the custom of running footpaths between, and not over, fields explains the Sabbath-walk of our Lord and his disciples. Luke 6:1. The little band did not trample down the ripened grain. They merely walked between the fields and plucked the wheat on either hand. The complaint was not brought against them because they took the wheat, but because they broke the Sabbath.