Why does a number mean a concept, anyway? We have number one and 4 reminds Chinese character users of death.
I always heard that the numbers in (ancient?) Hebrew were all homophones of other words. In my recollection, 7 is “covenant” which is pretty close to “vow” as you have said. I’ve heard of others but forgot what they are. Maybe 3 is “complete” or something like that. Anyway, it’s not just a representation, but the same exact spelling, like a pun, even.
Think: Won, Too, Free, For, Thrive, Ticks, Heaven, Ate, Mine, Den.
Oh, right! It was technically “covenant”, but a covenant is made of vows.
In sensus plenior:
1 = God
2 = dualistic heaven-earth
3 = Trinity
4 = voices of God as prophet, priest, king, judge
5 = man
6 = three testimonies in heaven, three testimonies on earth
7 = fullness
8 = the four voices of God in heaven and on earth
9 = Each person of the Trinity is the fullness of God
10 = dual natured man-God, Christ
12 = the four voices by the three persons
100 = the church
1000 = king
144 = the kingdom in heaven and on earth
153 = the communion of God and the church
Cool! Thanks! Where did you get that info.? Still, I thought 7 was 'covenant."
In metaphoric or allegorical interpretations there are no rules, so people come up with their own interpretation.
In sensus plenior, the meaning must comply wit the rules, so they are verifiable and reproducible.
Here are the rules that have been found so far, perhaps there are others:
Since God has said that not a jot or tittle will pass away, until one knows why each jot and tittle is there, a complete understanding has not been derived. (This keeps us humble)
Since man shall live “…by every word”, a doctrine is not sound until it sums up and includes all that God has said about it. (This keeps us searching)
Since every word must be established by two or three witnesses, every shadow must have at least two supporting scripture witnesses. (This keeps us rigorous in methodology)
Since God’s word is established forever, a shadow means the same thing everywhere is it used. So, since a donkey is a shadow of a prophet, everywhere there is a donkey, it is a shadow of a prophet. This rule alone makes the shadows humanly impossible to fabricate. (This keeps us in awe)
The riddle of Samson tells us Christ is the answer to all the riddles. If the shadow doesn’t look like Christ, it isn’t a good shadow. (This keeps us focused)
And since we are to “let everyman be a liar and God be true”, outside references are not required to solve the riddles and see the shadows. (This keeps us devoted)
These rules are discerned using the same methods that sensus plenior itself is discerned.
Although many systems attempt to find hidden meanings, you can see that rule 5 eliminates Gnosticism, Rules 5&6 eliminate Cabbala. To eliminate human invention, Rule 4 is applied. It would be humanly impossible to impose a system of interpretation over the scriptures where rule 4 is followed.