Questions tagged [word-study]

Investigation into the meaning or use of an individual word across a body of writing.

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24
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4answers
31k views

What translation best translates the word "vanity" (in the KJV) in Ecclesiastes?

The word "vanity" (KJV) in Ecclesiastes was translated (possibly incorrectly) in the NIV as "meaningless". Is "vanity" the best translation for the Hebrew word hebel (Strongs 1892) or does a newer ...
22
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6answers
39k views

Was "Τετέλεσται" actually stamped on paid bills and debt certificates in the first century?

I've often heard some really cool explanations around the meaning for the greek word Τετέλεσται in the New Testament where Jesus said, "It is Finished". I love what I've heard, and have even preached ...
20
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11answers
63k views

What did Jesus mean by "be perfect" in the Sermon on the Mount?

I asked this on the Christianity Stack Exchange site, and they told me it would be better here. So I here I am asking it... Therefore you shall be perfect, just as your Father in heaven is perfect. ...
20
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2answers
6k views

Why does Job use "bless" to mean "curse"?

This is bizarre to me, and as far as I can find HALOT (a Hebrew lexicon) doesn't even mention it.1 There are 8 instances of brk – the normal word for "bless" – in Job.2 The ESV is ...
19
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8answers
32k views

Translation of "abba" (Αββα, אבא)

What is the best English translation of abba (Greek: Αββα, Aramaic: אבא) such as in Romans 8:15? What are its senses in the original languages, and are those best captured by father, dad, daddy, or ...
18
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3answers
1k views

Could Philippians 4:3 refer to Paul's wife?

Philippians 4:3 reads: ναὶ ἐρωτῶ καὶ σέ, γνήσιε σύζυγε*, συνλαμβάνου αὐταῖς, αἵτινες ἐν τῷ εὐαγγελίῳ συνήθλησάν μοι μετὰ καὶ Κλήμεντος καὶ τῶν λοιπῶν συνεργῶν μου, ὧν τὰ ὀνόματα ἐν βίβλῳ ζωῆς. (...
18
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5answers
6k views

Did Jesus read minds or perceive them?

In this passage, most English translations say "knowing their thoughts". In the footnote it says "perceiving" their thoughts. I feel like this is a pretty monumental difference as perceiving thoughts ...
18
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6answers
2k views

The lexicology of Pharaoh's heart

In the narrative of Exodus 4-14 (spanning from the time of Moses's initial assignment until the crossing of the Red Sea), there are three different verbs used to describe the action against and/or the ...
16
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11answers
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In 2 Peter 1:4 what does Peter mean by "partakers of the divine nature"?

3His divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of him who called us to his own glory and excellence, 4by which he has granted to us his ...
15
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4answers
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What is the difference between "eretz" and "adamah" in Gen 2:6?

These two words are variably translated as ground, earth, land etc. How should we understand the difference between the words in this passage? Genesis 2:6 And a mist was going up from the land (...
15
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5answers
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What was meant by "paradise" when Jesus spoke to the thief on the cross?

As he was crucified, Jesus engaged in a conversation with one of the thieves hung along side him. At the end of that conversation is this pronouncement: Luke 23:43 (ESV) 43 And he said to him, "...
15
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4answers
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In 1 Tim 2:12, how does αὐθεντεῖν (αὐθεντεω) differ from the more commonly used ἐξουσιάζω?

SBLGNT: διδάσκειν δὲ γυναικὶ οὐκ ἐπιτρέπω, οὐδὲ αὐθεντεῖν ἀνδρός, ἀλλ’ εἶναι ἐν ἡσυχίᾳ. From what I can tell, this is the only use of any form of this word (often translated "to exercise authority"...
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6answers
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Does Isaiah 7:14 refer to a virgin?

There have been quite a few debates on why the word παρθένος (“virgin”) is used in the Septuagint of Isaiah 7:14 when translating the Hebrew word עלמה ("a young maiden”).1 For context let us go ...
14
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9answers
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What evidence is there that "morphe theou" in Philippians 2:6 means "God's nature"?

Is there any evidence that μορφῇ θεοῦ (morphe theou) in Philippians 2:6 means the "nature" of God the Father? ὃς ἐν μορφῇ θεοῦ ὑπάρχων οὐχ ἁρπαγμὸν ἡγήσατο τὸ εἶναι ἴσα θεῷ, — SBLGNT Several ...
14
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4answers
481 views

When the Bible says "the world", does that only include Eurasia and Africa?

I've heard this argument a few different times for different verses. (Unfortunately, I can't remember exactly which verses as that would strengthen this question quite a bit.) However, the argument ...
14
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5answers
3k views

Is there a difference between "the devil" and "Satan" in the Synoptic Gospels?

While answering a question about the words σατανᾶς (satanas, Satan – transliterated from Hebrew śāṭān) and διάβολος (diabolos, devil) in the New Testament, I ran into another question for which ...
13
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6answers
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In Luke 11:50-51, why does Luke seem to refer to Abel as a "prophet"?

In the gospel of Luke at Chapter 11:50-51 (NIV), Jesus refers to Abel as a "prophet." I am not aware of any scripture spoken by Abel, which would prove that he is a prophet,but the words of Jesus ...
13
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1answer
456 views

Is there any research that challenges the standard definition of 'προορίζω' (predestine)? [closed]

The definition of προορίζω in the Enhanced Strong's Lexicon is: 4309 Six occurrences; AV translates as “predestinate” four times, “determine before” once, and “ordain” once. 1 to predetermine, ...
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7answers
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What does the word harpagmos mean in Philippians 2:6?

MOUNCE renders it: who, although he was in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped, Westcott and Hort / [NA27 variants] ὃς ἐν μορφῇ θεοῦ ὑπάρχων οὐχ ...
12
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8answers
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In Hebrews 4:12 what is the difference between ψυχή ("soul") and πνεῦμα ("spirit")?

Hebrews 4:12 seems to distinguish between "soul" and "spirit" (or ψυχή and πνεῦμα, respectively) in some manner similar to the difference between "joint" and "marrow." For the word of God is quick, ...
12
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4answers
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In Mark 5:41 what does "talitha cumi" mean?

In Mark 5:41, Jesus speaks in Aramaic as he resurrects a young girl: Taking her by the hand he said to her, “Talitha cumi,” which means, “Little girl, I say to you, arise.” Other translations ...
12
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4answers
33k views

What is the "Water" of Genesis 1:2?

We read in the creation account: The earth was without form and void, and darkness was over the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the waters.—Genesis 1:2 (...
12
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5answers
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What were the “Urim and Thummim” (KJV)?

The first mention of these two objects occurs in Exo. 28:30, in which it is written, 30 And thou shalt put in the breastplate of judgment the Urim and the Thummim; and they shall be upon Aaron's ...
12
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6answers
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What does Jesus mean when he says "blessed" in the Beatitudes of Matthew 5?

I ask this as blessed can mean many things. Eternal life, financial wealth, health, having kids, having a job, being happy, etc. Blessings seem to be very broad, so I'd like to see if anyone can ...
12
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3answers
5k views

In Matthew 18:34, what does the Greek word βασανισταῖς (“torturers”) mean?

At the end of the parable of the unmerciful servant, the master has him jailed and handed over to be tortured: 34 And his lord, moved with anger, handed him over to the torturers until he should ...
12
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4answers
216 views

Terminology of “goodness” in Romans 7

There are two different words translated "good" or "right" in Romans 7: ἀγαθός and καλός. I'm trying to determine whether there is any distinction intended. I realize that the "basic" sense (or at ...
12
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6answers
5k views

In 2 Timothy 2:15 what is meant by "rightly dividing the word of truth"?

In 2 Tim 2:15 we read: KJV Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth. SBLGNT σπούδασον σεαυτὸν δόκιμον παραστῆσαι ...
12
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2answers
1k views

What is חֶמְדַּת נָשִׁים in Daniel 11:37

Daniel chapter 11 speaks of the Willful king that will profane the temple and persecute the Jews. One of the many descriptions given to him is found in verse 37, וְעַל-אֱלֹהֵי אֲבֹתָיו לֹא יָבִין, ...
11
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2answers
3k views

Are bats described as birds?

Leviticus 11:13,19 reads: And these you shall detest among the birds . . . the eagle, the bearded vulture, the black vulture . . . and the bat. (ESV translation) Does the bible describe bats as ...
11
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3answers
3k views

Angel or messenger?

Often, it is clear from context whether מלאך and αγγελος refer to a human messenger or an angelic messenger. For example, if a מלאך or αγγελος is sent by a human, then the messenger is likely human. ...
11
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5answers
10k views

Who is being slandered in 2 Peter 2:10b-11?

There are a number of interrelated questions I have arising from 2 Peter 2:10-11. Here are a pair of translations of the relevant verses (emphasis mine): NIV: Bold and arrogant, they are not afraid ...
11
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5answers
12k views

How did “Sirens” arise in the Septuagint translation of Isaiah 13:21?

I am reading in the book of Isaiah at chapter 13 verse 21 in the King James Bible , and I notice in this bible, and in other English bible translations, that owls and jackals are commonly mentioned. ...
11
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6answers
17k views

Why does Mark use "immediately" so often?

I noticed while reading Mark 1 that the word immediately (εὐθὺς) is used eleven times in this chapter. When I researched, I found a theory that it may have been Mark's way of portraying Jesus as the ...
11
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2answers
1k views

What factors define meaning of "little ones" in Deuteronomy?

In Deu. 20:13-14, it is written, 13 And when the Lord your God gives it into your hand, you shall put all its males to the sword, 14 but the women and the little ones, the livestock, and everything ...
11
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3answers
379 views

In Romans 11:4 why did Paul use χρηματισμός to introduce his quotation from the Elijah narrative?

Romans 11:4 (NA28 | ESV): ἀλλὰ τί λέγει αὐτῷ ὁ χρηματισμός; κατέλιπον ἐμαυτῷ ἑπτακισχιλίους ἄνδρας, οἵτινες οὐκ ἔκαμψαν γόνυ τῇ Βάαλ. But what is God’s reply to him? (literally: what does the ...
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4answers
869 views

What is the difference between ζωὴ and ψυχὴ?

The word "life" appears in most translations of John 12:25 three times. For example, in the ESV: Whoever loves his life loses it, and whoever hates his life in this world will keep it for eternal ...
10
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3answers
10k views

How can we understand "fear"? [closed]

It seems that (throughout the Bible), we have been told to "not fear" but also to "fear God". How can we understand this word "fear" in these two contexts? If this word in these two contexts carries ...
10
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2answers
3k views

Does the word Satan ever show up in the New Testament?

Satan is a Hebrew word that means adversary. The New Testament is written in Greek. So I guess not. It seems that they have another word. Diabolos or something that means the devil. Is that devil ...
10
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4answers
2k views

Does Peter intend to identify the Pauline Epistles as canonical?

In 2 Peter 3:15-16, Peters states: And count the patience of our Lord as salvation, just as our beloved brother Paul also wrote to you according to the wisdom given him, as he does in all his ...
10
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13answers
484 views

If the Word was God, and the Word was the Son, can we conclude that the Son is God?

John 1:1 (NIV): In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. John 1:14 (NIV): 14 The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the ...
10
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9answers
5k views

What basis do we have for defining Sabbatismos in Hebrews 4:9?

The word, Sabbatismos occurs in the Greek NT only once. Strongest Strong's defines it as Sabbath rest; Sabbath observance. Thayer's/Strong's defines it as a Sabbath keeping. Various English ...
10
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2answers
7k views

In Genesis 6:4 how should נְפִילִים (nephilim/giants) be translated?

Are there other translations of the word "Giant"? Please note that this question is related to this question. Genesis 6:4 KJV There were giants in the earth in those days; and also after that, ...
10
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4answers
1k views

Who were the "poor among the saints" in Jerusalem?

Near the end of Romans there are details about financial relationships between churches. It's never really occurred to me to read it as anything but the face value in English: Romans 15:25-26 (ESV) ...
10
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5answers
5k views

1 Corinthians 13:10 - What does Paul mean by "Completeness"?

What are the meanings given the original Greek word? NIV, 1 Corinthians 13:8-10 - Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; ...
10
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4answers
3k views

Is 1 Corinthians 9:27 about literally beating oneself up?

I'm used to reading the Bible in Finnish, so 1 Corinthians 9:27 seems very non-literal in most English translations. The Finnish 1992 translation is usually quite dynamic, but in this case it starts "...
10
votes
1answer
8k views

Was Zechariah simply mute, or deaf as well?

In Luke 1 (ESV), Zechariah the priest is rendered mute for his lack of faith: 19 And the angel answered him, “I am Gabriel. I stand in the presence of God, and I was sent to speak to you and to ...
10
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5answers
1k views

“You are my Son, today I have begotten you” - what are the meaning and implications of the word "today" in the context of Hebrews 1:5?

Hebrews 1:5 (ESV): 5 For to which of the angels did God ever say, “You are my Son, today I have begotten you”? Or again, “I will be to him a father, and he shall be to me a son”? It's clear that ...
10
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2answers
198 views

In Romans 2:9-10 and Romans 2:14 does Paul use ἔθνη and Ἕλληνες interchangeably?

I'm trying to figure out if ἔθνη (Gentiles) and Ἕλληνες (Greeks)1 envision different (presumably overlapping) groups, emphasize different aspects of the same group, or are simply interchangeable.2,3 ...
10
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1answer
3k views

What are some examples of drug use in Paul's day that would describe what would be considered pharmakeia/sorcery as he lists it in Galatians 5:20?

In Galatians 5:20, among the deeds of the flesh, Paul lists "pharmakeia," which, as i understand, is commonly translated as sorcery or witchcraft, referring to the use or administering of drugs or ...
10
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2answers
512 views

Judges 3:9 and the meaning of זעק

In Judges 3:9 we read: “When the children of Israel cried out to the LORD, the LORD raised up a deliverer for the children of Israel, who delivered them: Othniel the son of Kenaz, Caleb's ...

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