Mar
2015

“Baal”

Found just once in the New Testament (Rom. 11:4Rom. 11:4
English: American Standard Version (1901) - ASV

4 But what saith the answer of God unto him? I have left for myself seven thousand men, who have not bowed the knee to Baal.

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), the name “Baal” described a pagan Canaanite deity (the female counterpart to Baal was Asherath).

This false god is first mentioned in Num. 24:1Num. 24:1
English: American Standard Version (1901) - ASV

24 1 And when Balaam saw that it pleased Jehovah to bless Israel, he went not, as at the other times, to meet with enchantments, but he set his face toward the wilderness.

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and it is associated with the Israelites on multiple occasions, one of which involved Elijah and Mount Carmel.

Although many have literally and figuratively “bowed the kneel to Baal” at times (Rom. 11:4Rom. 11:4
English: American Standard Version (1901) - ASV

4 But what saith the answer of God unto him? I have left for myself seven thousand men, who have not bowed the knee to Baal.

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), Paul said God has always had His “faithful remnant.”

Mar
2015

The Greek word “apsuchos”

Found just once in the New Testament (1 Cor. 14:71 Cor. 14:7
English: American Standard Version (1901) - ASV

7 Even things without life, giving a voice, whether pipe or harp, if they give not a distinction in the sounds, how shall it be known what is piped or harped?

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), the Greek adjective “apsuchos” meant “without life.”

As discussed in this author’s commentary on 1 Cor. 14:71 Cor. 14:7
English: American Standard Version (1901) - ASV

7 Even things without life, giving a voice, whether pipe or harp, if they give not a distinction in the sounds, how shall it be known what is piped or harped?

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, this adjective is a compound word based on the Greek word for “life” (psuche) and the “alpha privative.”

Outside the New Testament this term sometimes described “the statues of gods.” Paul used this word to describe “lifeless” musical instruments.

Mar
2015

The Greek word “apsinthos”

Found just once in the New Testament (Rev. 8:11Rev. 8:11
English: American Standard Version (1901) - ASV

11 and the name of the star is called Wormwood: and the third part of the waters became wormwood; and many men died of the waters, because they were made bitter.

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), the Greek noun “apsinthos” meant “wormwood.” There is an actual “wormwood plant,” but John used this word to describe sorrow and catastrophe in Rev. 8:11Rev. 8:11
English: American Standard Version (1901) - ASV

11 and the name of the star is called Wormwood: and the third part of the waters became wormwood; and many men died of the waters, because they were made bitter.

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. Here he spoke of a “star” which “fell on a third of the waters” and “poisoned a third of the lakes and rivers.”

There are various interpretations for this word, and the one accepted by this author is that “wormwood” describes false doctrine throughout the Christian era.

God wants humanity to partake of the “pure water of life” (Rev. 21:6; 22:1, 17Rev. 21:6; 22:1, 17
English: American Standard Version (1901) - ASV

6 And he said unto me, They are come to pass. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end. I will give unto him that is athirst of the fountain of the water of life freely. 22 1 And he showed me a river of water of life, bright as crystal, proceeding out of the throne of God and of the Lamb, 17 And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. And he that heareth, let him say, Come. And he that is athirst, let him come: he that will, let him take the water of life freely.

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) versus the doctrines and commandments of men (Mt. 15:8-9Mt. 15:8-9
English: American Standard Version (1901) - ASV

8 This people honoreth me with their lips; But their heart is far from me. 9 But in vain do they worship me, Teaching as their doctrines the precepts of men.

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), but some choose “wormwood” (false teachings) which will lead them to hell, the greatest and most painful bitterness of all.

Mar
2015

The Greek word “apseudes”

Found just once in the New Testament (Tit. 1:2Tit. 1:2
English: American Standard Version (1901) - ASV

2 in hope of eternal life, which God, who cannot lie, promised before times eternal;

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), the Greek adjective “apseudes” means “truthful” or “free from falsehood.” Paul used this term to say God is truthful—completely free from falsehood. It is literally impossible for God to lie.

Mar
2015

The Greek word “achuron”

Found just twice in the New Testament (Mt. 3:12Mt. 3:12
English: American Standard Version (1901) - ASV

12 whose fan is in his hand, and he will thoroughly cleanse his threshing-floor; and he will gather his wheat into the garner, but the chaff he will burn up with unquenchable fire.

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; Lk. 3:17Lk. 3:17
English: American Standard Version (1901) - ASV

17 whose fan is in his hand, thoroughly to cleanse his threshing-floor, and to gather the wheat into his garner; but the chaff he will burn up with unquenchable fire.

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), the Greek noun “achuron” meant “husks” or “chaff.” These broken up stalks were used for making bricks (Ex. 5:7Ex. 5:7
English: American Standard Version (1901) - ASV

7 Ye shall no more give the people straw to make brick, as heretofore: let them go and gather straw for themselves.

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) and also served as fuel for fires. In Mt. 3:12Mt. 3:12
English: American Standard Version (1901) - ASV

12 whose fan is in his hand, and he will thoroughly cleanse his threshing-floor; and he will gather his wheat into the garner, but the chaff he will burn up with unquenchable fire.

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and Lk. 3:17Lk. 3:17
English: American Standard Version (1901) - ASV

17 whose fan is in his hand, thoroughly to cleanse his threshing-floor, and to gather the wheat into his garner; but the chaff he will burn up with unquenchable fire.

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this word describes the unsaved who will be “burned” (i.e. perish eternally in hell).

Mar
2015

The Greek word “achri”

Found 45 times in the New Testament, and used as both a preposition and conjunction, the Greek word “achri” meant “until,” “within,” “unto,” “as far as,” “as long as,” etc.

When used as a preposition, this term is typically associated with time (for examples of this see Mt. 24:38Mt. 24:38
English: American Standard Version (1901) - ASV

38 For as in those days which were before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noah entered into the ark,

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; Lk. 1:20; 17:27Lk. 1:20; 17:27
English: American Standard Version (1901) - ASV

20 And behold, thou shalt be silent and not able to speak, until the day that these things shall come to pass, because thou believedst not my words, which shall be fulfilled in their season. 27 They ate, they drank, they married, they were given in marriage, until the day that Noah entered into the ark, and the flood came, and destroyed them all.

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; Acts 2:29; 23:1; 26:22Acts 2:29; 23:1; 26:22
English: American Standard Version (1901) - ASV

29 Brethren, I may say unto you freely of the patriarch David, that he both died and was buried, and his tomb is with us unto this day. 23 1 And Paul, looking stedfastly on the council, said, Brethren, I have lived before God in all good conscience until this day. 22 Having therefore obtained the help that is from God, I stand unto this day testifying both to small and great, saying nothing but what the prophets and Moses did say should come;

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; 2 Cor. 3:142 Cor. 3:14
English: American Standard Version (1901) - ASV

14 but their minds were hardened: for until this very day at the reading of the old covenant the same veil remaineth, it not being revealed to them that it is done away in Christ.

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). When used as a conjunction, this term “is sometimes connected with the relative οὗ: until the time when, where” (Exegetical Dictionary of the New Testament, 1:186) something takes place. For examples of this see Acts 7:18; 27:33Acts 7:18; 27:33
English: American Standard Version (1901) - ASV

18 till there arose another king over Egypt, who knew not Joseph. 33 And while the day was coming on, Paul besought them all to take some food, saying, This day is the fourteenth day that ye wait and continue fasting, having taken nothing.

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; Rom. 11:25Rom. 11:25
English: American Standard Version (1901) - ASV

25 For I would not, brethren, have you ignorant of this mystery, lest ye be wise in your own conceits, that a hardening in part hath befallen Israel, until the fulness of the Gentiles be come in;

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; 1 Cor. 11:26; 15:251 Cor. 11:26; 15:25
English: American Standard Version (1901) - ASV

26 For as often as ye eat this bread, and drink the cup, ye proclaim the Lord's death till he come. 25 For he must reign, till he hath put all his enemies under his feet.

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, etc. In a few places this term refers to “spatial distance” (ibid and compare Heb. 4:12Heb. 4:12
English: American Standard Version (1901) - ASV

12 For the word of God is living, and active, and sharper than any two-edged sword, and piercing even to the dividing of soul and spirit, of both joints and marrow, and quick to discern the thoughts and intents of the heart.

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; Rev. 14:20; 18:5Rev. 14:20; 18:5
English: American Standard Version (1901) - ASV

20 And the winepress are trodden without the city, and there came out blood from the winepress, even unto the bridles of the horses, as far as a thousand and six hundred furlongs. 5 for her sins have reached even unto heaven, and God hath remembered her iniquities.

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). This word can also be used to describe geographical locations as illustrated by Acts 13:6; 28:15Acts 13:6; 28:15
English: American Standard Version (1901) - ASV

6 And when they had gone through the whole island unto Paphos, they found a certain sorcerer, a false prophet, a Jew, whose name was Bar-jesus; 15 And from thence the brethren, when they heard of us, came to meet us as far as The Market of Appius and The Three Taverns; whom when Paul saw, he thanked God, and took courage.

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) and persons (2 Cor. 10:13-142 Cor. 10:13-14
English: American Standard Version (1901) - ASV

13 But we will not glory beyond our measure, but according to the measure of the province which God apportioned to us as a measure, to reach even unto you. 14 For we stretch not ourselves overmuch, as though we reached not unto you: for we came even as far as unto you in the gospel of Christ:

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).

Mar
2015

The Greek word “achrestos”

Found just once in the New Testament (Phile. 11), the Greek adjective “achrestos” meant “unprofitable” or “useless.”

Prior to becoming a Christian Onesimus had been of limited value (“unprofitable”) to Philemon. After becoming a Christian, Onesimus was useful to both Paul and Philemon. Paul apparently used this term, in this verse, because it offered him a “play on words.”

Mar
2015

The Greek word “achreioo”

Found only in Rom. 3:12Rom. 3:12
English: American Standard Version (1901) - ASV

12 They have all turned aside, they are together become unprofitable; There is none that doeth good, no, not, so much as one:

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, the Greek verb “achreioo” meant “unprofitable.” All accountable people “have become unfit (through sin)” (Exegetical Dictionary of the New Testament, 1:186).

Mar
2015

The Greek word “achreios”

Found just twice in the New Testament (Mt. 25:30Mt. 25:30
English: American Standard Version (1901) - ASV

30 And cast ye out the unprofitable servant into the outer darkness: there shall be the weeping and the gnashing of teeth.

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; Lk. 17:10Lk. 17:10
English: American Standard Version (1901) - ASV

10 Even so ye also, when ye shall have done all the things that are commanded you, say, We are unprofitable servants; we have done that which it was our duty to do.

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), the Greek adjective “achreios” meant “unprofitable,” “useless,” “good for nothing.”

Jesus described a servant who hid his talent in the ground instead of using as an “unprofitable” servant. We can put forth our best efforts to serve God, but in the end we will still be an “unprofitable” servant (Lk. 17:10Lk. 17:10
English: American Standard Version (1901) - ASV

10 Even so ye also, when ye shall have done all the things that are commanded you, say, We are unprofitable servants; we have done that which it was our duty to do.

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).

Mar
2015

The Greek word “achlus”

Found just once in the New Testament (Acts 13:11Acts 13:11
English: American Standard Version (1901) - ASV

11 And now, behold, the hand of the Lord is upon thee, and thou shalt be blind, not seeing the sun for a season. And immediately there fell on him a mist and a darkness; and he went about seeking some to lead him by the hand.

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), the Greek noun “achlus” meant “dimness of sight”or “darkness.”

This term, which was often used as a medical word, often described the “dimness of sight” due to a medical problem. In Acts 13:11Acts 13:11
English: American Standard Version (1901) - ASV

11 And now, behold, the hand of the Lord is upon thee, and thou shalt be blind, not seeing the sun for a season. And immediately there fell on him a mist and a darkness; and he went about seeking some to lead him by the hand.

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Luke used this word to describe the temporary blinding of Elymas the magician.