Jesus' Parables for Disciples
Beginning the Journey (for new Christians).
1, 2, and 3 John
1 & 2 Thessalonians
1 & 2 Timothy
2 Peter, Jude
7 Last Words of Christ
Acts 1-12: The Early Church
Christ Powered Life (Rom 5-8)
Conquering Lamb of Revelation
David, Life of
Glorious Kingdom, The
Early Church: Acts1-12
Holy Spirit, Disciple's Guide
Jesus and the Kingdom
Lamb of God
Listening for God's Voice
Names of God
Names of Jesus
Rebuild & Renew: Post-Exilic Books
Sermon on the Mount
Songs of Ascent (Ps 120-135)
11. Let Us Trust: Perspective of Faith (Hebrews 11:7-12:2)
Abram went to a land he did not know, following God by faith. James Jacques Joseph Tissot (French painter and illustrator, 1836-1902), "The Caravan of Abram" (1896-1902), gouache on board, 7-7/16x 3-5/16 in., The Jewish Museum, New York. Larger image.
The Faith of Abraham (11:8-19)
Not without reason is Abraham known as the "Father of Faith."
"8By faith Abraham, when called to go to a place he would later receive as his inheritance, obeyed and went, even though he did not know where he was going. 9By faith he made his home in the promised land like a stranger in a foreign country; he lived in tents, as did Isaac and Jacob, who were heirs with him of the same promise. 10For he was looking forward to the city with foundations, whose architect and builder is God.
11By faith Abraham, even though he was past age -- and Sarah herself was barren -- was enabled to become a father because he considered him faithful who had made the promise. 12And so from this one man, and he as good as dead, came descendants as numerous as the stars in the sky and as countless as the sand on the seashore." (11:8-12)
We know the story. Our author centers on Abraham's vision, which focused beyond the visible things around him to the invisible, the eternal, "the city with foundations." Two verbs describe his faith.
Sojourn. "Made his home" (NIV), "stayed for a time" (NRSV), "sojourned" (KJV) is paroikeō, "inhabit a place as a stranger, migrate," used in the Septuagint mostly of strangers, who live in a place without holding citizenship.1 Abraham's attitude was of a temporary dweller. Though he did what he needed to live and protect his family, he was not overly attached to the land he dwelt in.
Look forward to. "Look forward to" is ekdechomai, "to remain in a place or state and await an event or the arrival of someone, expect, wait."2 There is a bit of other-worldliness about Abraham. He lived here, but lived on the basis of promises yet to come.
The city. The "city" is a symbol here of the ultimate focus of all the saints -- variously called "the city" (polis), the City of God, the Heavenly Jerusalem, the city that "he has prepared for them" (11:16). This "the city that is to come" (Hebrews 13:14), has "foundations" (11:10), specifically, according to Revelation 21, 12 foundations. This Holy City which we examine further in Hebrews 12 is constructed by no human. Its "architect3 and builder4 is God" (11:10). It is "prepared"5 by God for his saints (11:16).
The country. Another symbol of our heavenly destination is "a better country -- a heavenly one" (11:16). There isn't too much difference between the "city" and the whole "country." The point of both analogies is the locus of our allegiance, loyalty, citizenship. Abraham lived as a sojourner in Canaan, not as a citizen -- a model for us. The idea is also expressed in "aliens and strangers" below in 11:13.
Living by Faith (11:13a)
Now the author of Hebrews generalizes a bit about the people he is describing:
"13All these people were still living by faith when they died. They did not receive the things promised; they only saw them and welcomed them from a distance." (11:13a)
"Living by faith" (NIV) or " in faith" (NRSV, KJV) uses the preposition kata along with pistis, "faith," that we looked at in 11:1. Here kata used as a "marker of norm of similarity or homogeneity, according to, in accordance with, in conformity with."6 To live by faith, then, is to live our lives in conformity with our faith. We really can't help doing this -- we naturally conduct ourselves according to our core belief system. But in Christ, our belief system is shifting from worldly approaches and values to faith approaches and values. As our faith grow, our lives, our willingness to "take risks" with our faith, will grow too, since we are beginning to live in conformity with our growing faith.
Now the author asserts that the patriarchs saw and welcomed God's promises from afar. Exercising faith grows our ability to perceive God's purposes "from a distance,"7 and eagerly await them, or "welcome" them, as our author puts it. "Welcomed" (NIV), "greeted" (NRSV), "embraced" (KJV) is aspazomai, "to greet, welcome," here "to express happiness about the arrival of something."8 How well do we embrace God's promises of the future? How thoroughly do we live our lives in light of God's promises of a future dominated by the Kingdom of God on earth as it is in heaven? Or are we more strongly influenced by the present visible world than the unseen Kingdom?
Citizens of a Heavenly Country (11:13b-16)
Now our author carries on the analogy he developed with the ideas of "sojourning" (11:9) and "city" (11:10). This time he broadens the analogy to citizenship in a country.
"13bAnd they admitted that they were aliens and strangers on earth. 14People who say such things show that they are looking for a country of their own. 15If they had been thinking of the country they had left, they would have had opportunity to return. 16Instead, they were longing for a better country -- a heavenly one. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for he has prepared a city for them." (11:13-16)
"Country" (NIV, KJV) in verse 14 is patris, "fatherland, homeland," from patrios, "of one's fathers."9 But we have a new Father who demands a new allegiance. Thus, like Abraham, we live unashamedly10 in this world as sojourners. Verse 13b uses two words for this:
"Aliens" (NIV), "strangers" (NRSV, KJV) is xenos (from which we get our word "xenophobia," fear of strangers), here as a substantive, "stranger, alien."11
"Strangers" (NIV), "foreigners" (NRSV), "pilgrims" (KJV) is parepidēmos, pertaining to staying for a while in a strange or foreign place, here as a substantive, "stranger, sojourner, resident alien."12 The word is also used in a similar sense in 1 Peter 1:1 and 2:11.
This point of view is captured well in Albert E. Brumley's 1936 song:
"This world is not my home, I'm just passing through.
My treasures are laid up somewhere beyond the blue.
The angels beckon me from Heaven's open door
And I can't feel at home in this world anymore."13
Another is Sanford J. Massengale's, "I Don't Want to Get Adjusted":
"I don't want to get adjusted to this world, to this world.
I've got a home that's so much better
I'm gonna go there sooner or later,
I don't want to get adjusted to this world."14
It's not that we Christians are contrary to the world. We're not essentially negative, nay-sayers. We are essentially positive, forward thinkers. Two synonyms describe this kind of forward-looking faith in verses 14 and 16
"Looking for" (NIV), "seeking/seek" (NRSV, KJV) is epizēteō, "seek after," here, "to have a strong desire for, wish for." 15 This is related to ekzēteō "diligently seek") that we examined in verse 6 above.
"Longing for" (NIV), "desire" (NRSV, KJV) is oregō, "to seek to accomplish a specific goal, aspire to, strive for, desire."16
This is easier said than done. We might even be accused of being so "heavenly minded" that we're no "earthly good." (Of course, they said worse things about our Teacher!) Jesus discussed this very careful balance with his disciples in John 15:19; 17:13-16 -- being in the world but not of the world. It takes practice to walk this way, but the reward is power with God on earth and a great inheritance in the "city" to come!
Q1. (Hebrews 11:8-19) Abraham was on a faith-quest, looking
for a city (verse 10) and a country (verses 14-16). How does his
faith-journey encourage yours? In Scriptural typology, what is
the final "city" which we shall see? (12:22) What is the final
country of which we are citizens? (12:28)
|Q2. (Hebrews 11:13b) In practical terms, what would be
the characteristics of a believer who lived his life as an
"alien" and "stranger" here on earth? What is the balance
between "in" the world but not "of" it? (John 15:19; 17:13-16;
1 John 4:4-6).
Abraham's Faith for Isaac (11:17-19)
Now our author comes back to Abraham's faith-journey.
"17By faith Abraham, when God tested him, offered Isaac as a sacrifice. He who had received the promises was about to sacrifice his one and only son, 18even though God had said to him, 'It is through Isaac that your offspring will be reckoned.' 19Abraham reasoned that God could raise the dead, and figuratively speaking, he did receive Isaac back from death." (11:17-19)
When Abraham left his servants at the base of Mt. Moriah, he told them, "We will worship and then we will come back to you" (Genesis 22:5). When Isaac asked about a sacrifice, his dad replied, "God himself will provide the lamb for the burnt offering" (Genesis 22:8). What was he thinking? Our author perceives that he believed that somehow God would fulfill the promise made in Genesis 21:12, that through Isaac he would become the father of many nations. This is the same kind of faith, we are told, that believes in the God of resurrection. What faith!
The Faith of Isaac, Jacob, and Joseph (11:20-23)
Now he moves to the faith of the other patriarchs:
"20By faith Isaac blessed Jacob and Esau in regard to their future. 21By faith Jacob, when he was dying, blessed each of Joseph's sons, and worshiped as he leaned on the top of his staff. 22By faith Joseph, when his end was near, spoke about the exodus of the Israelites from Egypt and gave instructions about his bones." (11:20-23)
The Faith of Moses (11:23-28)
"23By faith Moses' parents hid him for three months after he was born, because they saw he was no ordinary17 child, and they were not afraid of the king's edict.
24By faith Moses, when he had grown up, refused to be known as the son of Pharaoh's daughter. 25He chose to be mistreated along with the people of God rather than to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a short time. 26He regarded disgrace for the sake of Christ as of greater value than the treasures of Egypt, because he was looking ahead to his reward. 27By faith he left Egypt, not fearing the king's anger; he persevered because he saw him who is invisible. 28By faith he kept the Passover and the sprinkling of blood, so that the destroyer of the firstborn would not touch the firstborn of Israel." (11:23-28)
Moses may not have known Yahweh early in his life, but he clearly identified with his people enough to murder someone who was beating one of his countrymen. As a result he had to run for his life and spent 40 years in exile. So long as he kept his true "citizenship" a secret, he could escape persecution. But when he openly sided with his people, he suffered the mistreatment that they suffered.18
Wasn't this just a spur-of-the-moment impulse? Perhaps. But it came from a growing conviction that his true allegiance must be to his own people, not to the royal family of Pharaoh. Our author extends his action a bit to its implications in our lives -- that he chose his true citizenship rather "than to enjoy the pleasures19 of sin for a season" (KJV, 11:25). Our author compares it in his own day to "the reproach of Christ" (KJV). "Disgrace" (NIV), "abuse" (NRSV), "reproach" (KJV), is oneidismos, "act of disparagement that results in disgrace, reproach, reviling, disgrace, insult."20 Our author is still trying to steel his readers against the very real persecution and pressures to conform that they -- and we -- face.
|Q3. (Hebrews 11:23-28) How did Moses' faith affect his
willingness to suffer? What kind of vision did faith
create for Moses? What kind of vision does faith create for
Faith to Enter the Promised Land (11:29-31)
In chapters 3 and 4 our author drew lessons from the Israelites' lack of faith during the Exodus. Here he draws lessons from their faith to enter.
"29By faith the people passed through the Red Sea as on dry land; but when the Egyptians tried to do so, they were drowned. 30By faith the walls of Jericho fell, after the people had marched around them for seven days. 31By faith the prostitute Rahab, because she welcomed the spies, was not killed with those who were disobedient." (11:29-31)
James Jacques Joseph Tissot (French painter and illustrator, 1836-1902), "The Seven Trumpets of Jericho" (1896-1902).
Rahab the prostitute is one of three women mentioned in Matthew's genealogy of Jesus (Matthew 1:5), along with two other women who were "irregular," but women of faith -- Bathsheba (an adulteress) and Ruth (a Moabite foreigner). Rahab welcomed and hid the two spies who were assessing Jericho's weak points so they could provide key intelligence for Israel's general, Joshua. Why did she hide them and lie so they wouldn't be discovered and killed? Why did she risk her own life had they been found? Was she a shrewd opportunist? Or a woman of faith in Israel's God and final victory? Perhaps her faith in Israel's God caused her to be a shrewd opportunist! When all is said and done, isn't that what we are, when we take faith in what the Bible says will happen in the end?
Q4. (Hebrews 11:8-31) What was the powerful motivating factor behind the actions taken by the people mentioned in these verses? What was this faith based on? At the Red Sea, how did the Israelites' faith differ from that of the Egyptian army? Did Rahab have real faith or was she a shrewd opportunist -- or is there a difference?
The Faith of a Multitude of Judges, Prophets, and Believers (11:32-38)
The writer is running out of papyrus -- and time -- so the names begin to tumble out without the stories that went with them, stories well-known by his readers:
"And what more shall I say? I do not have time to tell about Gideon, Barak, Samson, Jephthah, David, Samuel and the prophets...." (11:32)
If you'd like to study out these heroes of faith, here are the references:
- Gideon, a man who put to flight the invading armies of the Midianites and Amalekites with just 300 men, each armed with a torch, a pottery jar, and a ram's horn trumpet (shophar; Judges 6-8)
- Barak, a general inspired by the Prophetess Deborah who attacked Sisera's invading army (Judges 4-5).
- Samson, a selfish, Spirit-filled Israelite, whom God used -- in spite of himself -- to deliver Israel from the Philistine invaders (Judges 13-16)
- Jephthah, an Israelite warrior, son of a prostitute, who delivered Israel from the Ammonite armies (Judges 11-12).
- David, Israel's greatest king who escaped King Saul's attempts to kill him, conquered the surrounding kingdoms, and established Jerusalem as his capital (1 Samuel 16-31; 2 Samuel)
- Samuel, the last of the Judges, a prophet who anointed Saul and later David to be king over God's people (1 Samuel 1-25).
- The prophets. Many prophets are mentioned in 1 and 2 Samuel, 1 and 2 Kings, as well as those who authored the Major and Minor Prophets in the Old Testament. Many prophets were killed for standing without compromise for God's Word through them.
Now the author describes some of their acts of faith:
"33... Who through faith conquered kingdoms, administered justice, and gained what was promised; who shut the mouths of lions, 34quenched the fury of the flames, and escaped the edge of the sword; whose weakness was turned to strength; and who became powerful in battle and routed foreign armies. 35Women received back their dead, raised to life again. Others were tortured and refused to be released, so that they might gain a better resurrection. 36Some faced jeers and flogging, while still others were chained and put in prison. 37They were stoned; they were sawed in two; they were put to death by the sword. They went about in sheepskins and goatskins, destitute, persecuted and mistreated -- 38the world was not worthy of them. They wandered in deserts and mountains, and in caves and holes in the ground." (11:33-38)
Verses 33-34 would describe some of the exploits of the men mentioned in verse 32, though Daniel "shut the mouth of lions" (Daniel 6) and Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego "quenched the fury of the flames" (Daniel 3).
The women who "received back their dead" would be the son of the widow of Zarephath whom Elijah raised from the dead (1 Kings 17:17-23) and the son of the Shunammite woman brought to life by Elisha (2 Kings 4:27-37).
One "tortured and refused to be released" might be Eleazar, a martyr from the days of the Maccabean era of Israel's history, told in the apocryphal book of 2 Maccabees chapter 7.
Jeremiah, the prophet of the New Covenant, was on one occasion beaten and put in the stocks (Jeremiah 20, 37-38). Some of the readers' fellow members had spent time in prison for their faith (10:32-34). "Jeers and flogging ... chained and put in prison ... stoned," would fit the Apostle Paul's exploits in the Book of Acts. Being "sawn in two" was the traditional fate of the Prophet Isaiah during Manasseh's reign.21
Wandering about in animal skins, "destitute, persecuted, and mistreated ... in deserts and mountains, and in caves and holes in the ground" (11:37-38) could be said of some of the prophets, including Elijah, Elisha, and Ezekiel, but would also apply to many of the faithful who escaped persecution under the Greek king Antiochus Epiphanes and others.
Bruce observes, "Faith in God carries with it no guarantee of comfort in this world: this was no doubt one of the lessons which our author wished his readers to learn."22
One phrase from this passage inspires me especially:
"... of whom the world was not worthy." (11:38a, NRSV, KJV)
We are so jaded by the world's values! God wants us to put before our eyes men and women of persistent, consistent faith as role models, men and women of whom the world is not "worthy" (axios) -- "worthy, fit, deserving."23 How much less is the world worthy of the Son of God? Lord, put the kind of faith-filled grit that motivated these early saints into my own soul!
Their Faith Fulfilled Only with Ours (11:39-40)
Now our author is wrapping up his amazing discourse on faith.
"39These were all commended for their faith, yet none of them received what had been promised. 40God had planned something better for us so that only together with us would they be made perfect." (11:39-40)
As great as these men and women were, they didn't see their ultimate vision of God fulfilled completely. Rather this vision of God is to be made perfect only together with the generation of Christ's followers. "Made perfect" is teleioō, "to complete," here "to overcome or supplant an imperfect state of things by one that is free from objection, bring to an end, bring to its goal/accomplishment ... make perfect."24 Our author's point to his readers is: Don't give up what the saints of old longed to see!
A Cloud of Witnesses to Our Race (12:1)
"Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us." (12:1)
Finally, our author paints a picture of a stadium in which we are racing around a track. In the stands surrounding us are seated untold thousands of God's faithful people, now dead, who are looking on, a "great cloud of witnesses" (martus from which get our word "martyr"), "one who affirms or attests, testifier, witness."25 They "surround"26 us, and though unseen, urge us on by their own example of faithfulness.
"Therefore," concludes our writer, let us perform two actions:
Negative. "Throw off" (NIV) or "lay aside" (NRSV, KJV) is apotithēmi, "take off," here figuratively, "lay aside, rid oneself."27 Sometimes we try to run the race weighted down by distractions, unbelief, sins of various kinds. These are literally "weights" (onkos28) that make it difficult to run fast. Sins that we hang onto get entangled in our legs while we run, causing us to fall headlong onto the track. "Easily entangles" (NIV), "clings so closely" (NRSV), "easily beset" (KJV) is euperistatos, "easily ensnaring, obstructing, constricting."29
Positive. Run with "perseverance" (hupomonē30), a key word in Hebrews that we'll explore more fully our next lesson (Hebrews 12). The "race" (agōn, from which we get our word "agony") is a word used in classical Greek for "an athletic competition, contest, race." But the word is used in its figurative and more general sense elsewhere in the New Testament as, "a struggle against opposition, struggle, fight."31 This racetrack is "marked out" (NIV) or "set before" (NRSV, KJV) us. Prokeimai is used both in verses 1 and 2 as, "to be subsequent to some point of time as prospect," of a goal or destination, "lie or be set before someone."32 Running in this race is our destiny. Our struggles have been set before us and we must run in spite of them.
Jesus, the Author and Perfecter of Our Faith (12:2)
Instead of looking backwards -- whether toward Judaism or our former life -- we are to look ahead to the sprinter who has preceded us:
"Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God." (12:2)
He is our example. As we go through our struggles we must "fix our eyes" on him without distraction.33 He has run this race before us and we can learn from his example. He is the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end of faith. Here our author calls him:
"Author" (NIV, KJV) or "pioneer" (NRSV, archēgos) is the "one who begins or originates, originator, founder."34 He is the prototype runner!
"Perfecter" (NIV, NRSV), "finisher" (KJV, teleiōtēs) is the "one who brings something to a successful conclusion, perfecter."35
And how did he live out this faith in the face of pressure, death threats, intense persecution, and finally crucifixion? Our author tells us:
"... Who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame." (12:2b)
He looked beyond his current struggle to the goal, the end, the joy36 of completion, when he would sit down at his Father's right hand -- mission accomplished.
It was that forward look that enabled him to "endure" (hupomenō) the cross. This word, which is the theme of Hebrews 12, means, "to maintain a belief or course of action in the face of opposition, stand one's ground, hold out, endure."37 Jesus possessed the kind of faith that could see the unseen beyond this life to the reward to come, and that sight, that faith enabled him to live with integrity now and fulfill his destiny. So much so that he scorned (kataphroneō) the shame38 of the cross. The verb means "to look down on something with contempt or aversion, with implication that one considers the object of little value." Then the meaning is extended to "care nothing for, disregard, be unafraid of."39 It is this very kind of faith that our author holds before us to emulate.
Q5. (Hebrews 12:1-2) Who are the "great cloud of witnesses" mentioned in 12:1? What analogy to the life of faith is offered in 12:1? In what way is Jesus the "author" or "pioneer" of our faith? How did he live by faith? In what way is he the "finisher" or "perfecter" of our faith?
Lessons are also available in e-book and paperback formats.
When I played tennis in high school, my coach would say constantly: "Ralph, keep your eye on the ball!" That's the message of Hebrews 11: Keep your eye on the spiritual realities that you can see by faith. Live in light of them. Grant it, Lord Jesus!
Lord, I am so inspired when I read this chapter. The faith of the men and women who lived by faith encourages and beckons me to live by their determined example. Forgive me where I have been too weak to endure, too cloudy-eyed to see, too worldly to long for that which is to come. Correct my vision, I pray. Strengthen my will. Help me to exercise the faith that I do possess, that I might possess yet more. In Jesus' name, I pray. Amen.
"By faith Abraham, when called to go to a place he would later receive as his inheritance, obeyed and went, even though he did not know where he was going." (Hebrews 11:8)
"They confessed that they were aliens and strangers on earth." (Hebrews 11:13b).
"... The world was not worthy of them." (Hebrews 11:38b)
"Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us. Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God." (Hebrews 12:1-2)
- Paroikeō, BDAG 779.
- Ekdechomai, BDAG 300.
- "Architect" (NIV, NRSV), "builder" (KJV) is technitēs, "craftsperson, artisan, designer," here "architect." (BDAG 1001).
- "Builder" (NIV, NRSV), "maker" (KJV) is dēmiourgos, "one who designs something and constructs it, craftsworker, builder, maker, creator." (BDAG 223).
- "Prepared" in 11:16 is hetoimazō, "cause to be ready, put or keep in readiness, prepare" (BDAG 400-401, b.).
- Kata, BDAG 511-513, 5.a.
- "From a distance" (NIV, NRSV), "afar off" (KJV) is porrōthen, "pertaining to a position as point of reference for determining something as distant, from a distance" (BDAG 855).
- Aspazomai, BDAG 144, 2.
- Patris refers to "a relatively large geographical area associated with one's familial connections and personal life" (BDAG 788-789, 1.)
- "Admitted" (NIV), "confessed" (NRSV, KJV) is homologeō, "confess," here, "to concede that something is true, grant, admit, confess" (BDAG 708, 3.).
- Xenos, BDAG 684.
- Parepidēmos, BDAG 775.
- "This World Is Not My Home," is by Albert E. Brumley (©1936, renewed 1964, Albert E. Brumley And Sons (Admin. by Integrated Copyright Group, Inc.). Albert E. Brumley (1905-1977) is probably best known for his song, "I'll Fly Away" (1929).
- "I Don't Want to Get Adjusted" is by Sanford J. Massengale (Copyright 1938, Stamps-Baxter Music (Admin. by Brentwood-Benson Music Publishing, Inc.).
- Epizēteō, BDAG 371.
- Oregō, BDAG 721.
- "No ordinary" (NIV), "beautiful" (NRSV), "proper" (KJV) is asteios, "handsome, well-bred." The root word is city (astu) and compares country manners with, those befitting a city, that is, good breeding, refinement, as in our colloquial expression, having "class" (BDAG 145).
- "Mistreated with" (NIV), "share ill-treatment" (NRSV), "suffer affliction with" (KJV) is sunkakoucheomai, "suffer or be mistreated with someone else, a compound word, sun, "together, with" + kakoucheō, "injure, maltreat" (BDAG 951).
- "Enjoy the pleasures" is apolausis, "having the benefit of something, and so enjoying it, enjoyment," from apolauō, "have enjoyment of." (BDAG 115). "For a short time" (NIV), "fleeting" (NRSV), "for a season" (KJV) is proskairos, "lasting only for a time, temporary, transitory" (BDAG 881).
- Oneidismos, BDAG 710.
- Bruce (Hebrews, p. 328) cites a number of sources for this legend, including an apocryphal book called the Ascension of Isaiah (1:1-3:12; 5:1b-14).
- Bruce, Hebrews, p. 329.
- Axios, BDAG 93-94, 2.a.
- Teleioō, BDAG 996, 2.d. and e.
- Martus, BDAG 619.
- "Surrounded" (NIV, NRSV), "compassed about" (KJV) is perikeimai, "to be positioned around some object or area, be around, surround" (BDAG 801-802, 1.b.).
- Apotithēmi, BDAG 123-124, 1.b.
- "That hinders" (NIV) or "weight" (NRSV, KJV) is onkos, "weight, burden, impediment" (BDAG 689).
- Euperistatos, BDAG 410.
- Hupomonē, "the capacity to hold out or bear up in the face of difficulty, patience, endurance, fortitude, steadfastness, perseverance." (BDAG 1039-1040, 1.)
- Agōn, BDAG 17. Liddell-Scott: "assembly at the national games ... contest for a prize at the games ... contest where the prize is a crown."
- Prokeimai, BDAG 871, 3.
- "Fix our eyes" (NIV), "looking" (NRSV, KJV) is aphoraō, "to direct one's attention without distraction, fix one's eyes" (BDAG 158).
- Archēgos, BDAG 138-139, 3.
- Teleiōtēs, BDAG 997.
- "Joy" is chara, "joy, the experience of gladness" (BDAG 1077).
- Hupomenō, BDAG 1039, 2.
- "Shame" is aischunē, "an experience of ignominy that comes to someone, shame, disgrace" (BDAG 29-30, 2.).
- Kataphroneō, BDAG 529, 2.
In-depth Bible study books
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- 28 Advent Scriptures
- 1, 2, and 3 John
- 1 Peter
- 2 Peter & Jude
- 1 & 2 Thessalonians
- 1 & 2 Timothy
- 1 Corinthians
- 2 Corinthians
- Apostle Paul
- Abraham, Faith of
- Christ Powered Life (Romans 5-8)
- Christmas Incarnation
- Colossians and Philemon
- Conquering Lamb of Revelation
- David, Life of
- Early Church: Acts 1-12
- Glorious Kingdom, The
- Grace: Favor for the Undeserving
- Great Prayers of the Bible
- Holy Spirit, Disciple's Guide
- Jacob, Life of
- Jesus and the Kingdom of God
- JesusWalk: Beginning the Journey
- John's Gospel
- Lamb of God
- Listening for God's Voice
- Lord's Supper
- Luke's Gospel
- Moses the Reluctant Leader
- Names and Titles of God
- Names and Titles of Jesus
- Rebuild & Renew: Post-Exilic Books
- Resurrection and Easter Faith
- Sermon on the Mount
- Seven Last Words of Christ
- Songs of Ascent (Ps 120-134)