Old English dwellan "to mislead, deceive," originally "to make a fool of, lead astray," from Proto-Germanic *dwaljanan (cf. Old Norse dvöl "delay," dvali "sleep;" Middle Dutch dwellen "to stun, make giddy, perplex;" Old High German twellen "to hinder, delay;" Danish dvale "trance, stupor," dvaelbær "narcotic berry," source of Middle English dwale "nightshade"), from PIE *dhwel-, from root *dheu- (1) "dust, cloud, vapor, smoke" (and related notions of "defective perception or wits").
Related to Old English gedweola "error, heresy, madness." Sense shifted in Middle English through "hinder, delay," to "linger" (c.1200, as still in phrase to dwell upon), to "make a home" (mid-13c.). Related: Dwelled; dwelt; dwells.
Tents were in primitive times the common dwellings of men. Houses were afterwards built, the walls of which were frequently of mud (Job 24:16; Matt. 6:19, 20) or of sun-dried bricks. God "dwells in light" (1 Tim. 6:16; 1 John 1:7), in heaven (Ps. 123:1), in his church (Ps. 9:11; 1 John 4:12). Christ dwelt on earth in the days of his humiliation (John 1:14). He now dwells in the hearts of his people (Eph. 3:17-19). The Holy Spirit dwells in believers (1 Cor. 3:16; 2 Tim. 1:14). We are exhorted to "let the word of God dwell in us richly" (Col. 3:16; Ps. 119:11). Dwell deep occurs only in Jer. 49:8, and refers to the custom of seeking refuge from impending danger, in retiring to the recesses of rocks and caverns, or to remote places in the desert.