Gnashing of Teeth

Christ described “gnashing of teeth,” eight times in the New Testament 2000 years ago.  Medically to grind one’s teeth during sleep is called “bruxism” while to “grind” or gnash one’s teeth is something one usually does during the day while awake.  Anxiety and temporomandibular disorder (TMJ) come in here also as patients with both conditions may keep their jaw tight unconsciously.  We can relax the grip of our hand but it’s hard to relax the muscles in our neck and jaw.  We can’t know if we grind our teeth at night because it happens during dreaming and we cannot record what is going on at in our lives at that time.  However, a bed partner such as a spouse can hear the grinding and a dentist can diagnose it when he inspects the patient's teeth and sees how they are worn down in certain characteristic places.  Long term bruxism can lead to cracked teeth which may break and have to be pulled.  A dentist may advise a night time biteguard.  Tension due to muscle contraction of the neck, shoulders, and jaw is a feature of Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD), a common psychologic problem for many people. TMJ problems can cause a sore, tender jaw, jaw poppiing with opening, jaw locking, and pain with eating, especially meat.

Mat 8:12 “But the subjects of the kingdom will be thrown outside, into the darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.”

Mat 13:42 “They will throw them into the fiery furnace, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.”

Mat 22:13 "Then the king told the attendants, 'Tie him hand and foot, and throw him outside, into the darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.'”

Mat 24:51 “He will cut him to pieces and assign him a place with the hypocrites, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.”

Mat 25:30 “And throw that worthless servant outside, into the darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.”

Luke 13:28 "There will be weeping there, and gnashing of teeth, when you see Abraham, Isaac and Jacob and all the prophets in the kingdom of God, but you yourselves thrown out.”