Generally, a fabric consisting of twine, thread, or rope, and woven into meshes. Nets were used for catching fish (Ec 9:12; Isa 19:8; Mt 4:18-21), birds (Pr 1:17), and other animals (Isa 51:20). Among the main materials used in their construction were flax, palm fiber, and papyrus.
Metal nets, however, served completely different purposes. Nets made from copper were used as ornamentation for the capitals of the temple pillars Jachin and Boaz (see CAPITAL), and a copper net, or network, served as a grating for the altar of sacrifice.—Ex 27:4, 5; 38:4; 1Ki 7:16-18, 41, 42; Jer 52:22, 23.
Figurative Use. “Net” is often used figuratively in the Bible to represent means for ensnaring others—encircling them and taking them captive or bringing calamity upon them. (Job 18:8; 19:6; Ps 66:11; La 1:13; Eze 12:13; 17:20; 19:8; 32:3; Ho 5:1; 7:12; Mic 7:2) The means used by the Chaldeans to conquer nations as they extended their dominion over a wide area is likened to a dragnet. (Hab 1:6, 15-17) Also, flattery and the scheming heart of an immoral woman are compared to nets. (Pr 29:5; Ec 7:26) The psalmist expressed the confidence that Jehovah would deliver him from entangling nets (Ps 25:15; 31:4; 140:5, 12) and that those spreading out such nets would themselves be ensnared thereby.—Ps 9:15; 35:7, 8; 57:6; 141:10.