Word Studies

Brother (Adelphos)     -     November 18th, 2013

My sons and nephews began to show an interest in hunting as they were maturing. I was rather dormant in this activity due to raising small children. So we began.

A few years into our various adventures, looking for new hunting arrangements an opportunity arrived. A high-school friend and I happened to rendezvous at a Home Depot store. Being reminded through conversation that he loved hunting; I asked him where he hunts.

Soon we were headed toward his South Carolina hunting lodge to check it out. After much pondering, the decision was made, we paid our dues and also began helping in various chores that came as part of the experience. Three paying members and our various children, cousins and wives were experiencing community, i.e. breaking bread, working, laughing, helping, shooting, and telling stories in a perfect old house. It was good.

We were ready, with certain rules in place, hunting season opened. Being working men, hunting usually found its greatest participation on the weekends. None of us could come up all the time from Florida.

Well into the season, upon arriving at the lodge, I found a note forbidding my family to hunt a certain piece of property. My friend had decided to do this to prevent the over hunting of this particular area. We did as we were told.

Something penetrated me that day. Questions arose within. Why was I told instead of asked? I would have gladly yielded my rights if the consensus of the group decided it best. But, there wasn’t consensus; there wasn’t community. There was a ruling over. My heart lost interest. It was my last year under that arrangement.

Reflectively, I would strongly suggest this to be much of the reason men do not engage in what we are calling “church”. I believe it also connects with the provoking of our children to anger that fathers can be guilty of as their children go into adolescence (Ephesians 6:4). Incidentally, the man’s sons also butted heads with their father over this issue. Should they also have been asked?

Brotherhood is one choice. It denotes a fellowship of life based on identity of origin, e.g. members of same family, tribe, etc. one of the same nature. Also it designates a fellowship of love equivalent to or bringing with it a community of life. This is what I wanted at the lodge (Matthew 23:8 and Matthew 23:1-12).

I Master Over: To lord against, to rule over (Strong’s 2634) is another choice. It’s what I got a small dose of at the lodge that day.

It is what the rulers of this world do. It is what the evil spirit did to the seven sons of Sceva (a large dose). It is what overseers shouldn’t do (Matthew 20:25, Mark10:42, Acts 19:16, I Peter 5:3).

I want brotherhood or brothers to hunt with, to fellowship with, to worship with. Brothers and sisters crowd New Testament scripture, being the primary description of God’s people. Leave “I Master Over” for the world’s use.

“Is There Not A Cause?”

Strong’s 80

Gary Dudley

Posted By: Bill Bundy

Bristle (Phrisso)     -     November 16th, 2013

“What doth it profit, my brethren, though a man say he hath faith, and have not works? Can faith save him? If a brother or sister be naked, and destitute of daily food, and one of you say unto them, depart in peace, be ye warmed and filled; not withstanding ye give them not those things which are needful to the body; what doth it profit? Even so faith, if it hath not works, is dead, being alone. Yea, a man may say, thou hast faith, and I have works: show me thy faith without thy works, and I will show thee my faith by my works. Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well: the devils also believe, and tremble (phrisso: to “bristle” or chill, to have one’s hair stand on end). But wilt thou know, O vain (empty) man, that faith without works is dead?”

To tremble and fear in the presence of God is unavoidable and healthy; no alarm and fright at the thought of God is a condition of man’s sinful sickness (Romans 3:9-18). To understand the attitude of “phrisso” we must think bristle, chill or shudder. To bristle is to be or become stiff and erect (like bristles of a brush), to stiffen with anger, to become ready for a fight. To chill is coldness with shivering, a checking of enthusiasm, unfriendliness; to dispirit, to depress, to become hardened. To shudder is to shake or tremble suddenly or violently as in horror or extreme disgust. Fear of God and bristling before God are different hearts that are miles apart.

Cats bristle before a dog; wild dogs before captivity; fight rather than surrender, defense rather than worshipful bowing. Which are we in the presence of His word (Is. 66: 2)? The above quote out of James calls for our surrender to the necessity of works in a faith relationship. Shall we be the vain man whom bristles with horror or the disciple whom bows in fear and trembling at His instruction; tamed by the conviction that He is love whether He is gentle or severe.

“Is There Not A Cause?”

Strong’s 5425

Gary Dudley

Posted By: Bill Bundy

Braggadicio (Alazoneia)     -     November 15th, 2013

“Come now, you who say, “Today or tomorrow, we shall go to such and such a city, and spend a year there and engage in business and make a profit.” Yet you do not know what your life will be like tomorrow. You are just a vapor that appears for a little while and then vanishes away. Instead you ought to say, “If the Lord wills, we shall live and also do this or that.” But as it is, you boast in your arrogance (alazoneia); all such boasting is evil. Therefore to one who knows the right thing to do, and does not do it, to him it is sin” (James 4:13-17).

“For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh and the lust of the eyes and the boastful pride (alazoneia) of life (the present state of existence, the means of livelihood), is not from the Father, but is from the world” (I John 2:16).

“And just as they did not see fit to acknowledge God any longer, God gave them over to a depraved (unapproved) mind.....boastful (alazon).....” (Romans 1:28-30).

“But realize this, that in the last days difficult times will come. For men will be…..boastful (alazon).....” (II Timothy 3:1, 2).

Alazon (213) is a braggart, a boaster. He shows off that which he thinks or pretends he possesses.

Alazoneia (212) comes from alazon. Alazoneia is braggadocio, i.e. (by implication) self-confidence, according to Strong’s. Zodhiates says, “Alazoneia is someone going about with empty and boastful professions of cures and other feats. Coupled with life (979, bios) in I John 2:16 Zodhiates says it means showing off to fellow mortals; the pride, pomp, or manner of life; the ambitious or vainglorious pursuit of the honors, glories and splendors of this life; the luxury of life for the purpose of showing off, whether in dress, house, furniture, servants, food.”

Braggadocio is a man’s declarations of independence, independence from God and His kingdom. Braggadocio is declaring your self a citizen of this world; it is to engage in the world’s games. The braggart is not motivated by God’s will. Gods will (His words) is seen as a bad dog sleeping that shouldn’t be aroused lest we really find out what He thinks of us being in His yard. God interferes with our independent way of life, therefore we must suppress the truth of God within, we will not honor Him, nor give thanks to Him, we will exchange His glory for lies, we will worship other things, and no longer will we acknowledge Him (Romans 1:18-32) Braggadocio is to set your mind on the earth, not above (Colossians 3:2).

“BUT ON EVERY WORD THAT PROCEEDS OUT OF THE MOUTH OF GOD,” shall men live. “MAN SHALL NOT LIVE ON BREAD ALONE.” Bread (or anything) alone leaves desperate, hungry, dead men. The words of God have no substitute; independence from them has no future. If we wake up our supposed bad dog we’ll find Him to be the Master of the House who gives us Life Giving Bread.

Braggadocio is most dangerous when packaged in religious sounding jargon. A wolf is not as dangerous as a wolf in sheep’s clothes. Tares create more confusion than sandspurs for people who need bread. Are our religious institutions we call church independent of His word, braggadocio, of this world? At the end of our pursuits if we say in “Jesus name Amen” are we authentically yielded?

Independent men will ask for the opinions of men, search for ideas, rejecting the disturbing commandments from God. But before a king you should not say, “Give me your input, share your ideas so that I may decide.” Our independence is not annulled by considering or reading His words, rather yielding. In the kingdom of God, we come to decipher the king’s voice as many members, not to mute our insight with another man’s dominance; i.e. his independent control. God’s voice is the life of the called out ones found in plural perspective. Our ideas on having church and its leadership are mostly “braggadocio”, appealing to the world and not submitted to the King of Kings.

“Is There Not A Cause?

Strong’s 212

Gary Dudley

Posted By: Bill Bundy

Benefactors (Evergetes)     -     November 14th, 2013

Jesus said, according to Luke, “The kings of the Gentiles lord it over (2961, kurieuo, i.e. to have or exercise rule or authority over) them; and those who have authority over (1850, exousiazo, i.e. to control or to have or exercise power in the sense of permitting) them are called Benefactors (2110, evergetes, i.e. a worker of good, a title of honor).” (Luke 22: 24-30)

Matthew quotes Him as saying, “Rulers (758, archon, i.e. a first in rank or power) of the Gentiles lord it over them (2634, katakurieuo, i.e. to lord against, to rule over) and their great men exercise authority over them (2715, katexousiazo, i.e. to have or wield full privilege over, or to exercise authority against or over someone).” Mark echoes the words of Matthew. (Matthew 20: 25-28, Mark 10: 42-45)

“But it is not so among you or with you”, is the firm declaration of our Lord, “Whoever wishes to become great among you shall be your servant.” Have we heeded these instructions? Do we know the secret of greatness?

Diotrephes didn’t comprehend it (III John 9). The Corinthians certainly didn’t (II Corinthians 11:20), and many of the early “Church Fathers” strongly suggested the opposite of our Lord. Do the men in our pulpits most resemble kings or attendants in matters of leading?

Aren’t Benefactors promoted and promulgated today in religious services, commentaries, and Bible dictionaries, even in our translations of scripture, as we give honorary titles to “Clergy”? Notice the King James Version.

“I magnify my office” (1248, diakonia, i.e. attendance as a servant) (Romans 11:13). The other 33 times in scripture it isn’t translated as office. Why not “I magnify my attendance as a servant, my service”?

“Office of a deacon” (1247, diakoneo, i.e., to be an attendant, to wait upon menially as a host, friend [figuratively, teacher]) (I Timothy 3:1). Why do we call it office of deacon instead of I serve, I wait upon?

“Office of a bishop” (1984, episkope, i.e. inspection for relief, visitation, visit men for good) (I Timothy 3:1). “Bishopric” is the translation in reference to Judas (Acts 1:20). Why not translate it closer to “visitation,” as Luke 19: 44?

“All members have not the same office” (4234, praxis, i.e. practice, action, function) (Romans 12:4). Five other times praxis is translated with far different implications, (Works, Matthew 16: 27; Deed, Luke 23: 51; Deeds, Acts 19: 18; Deeds, Romans 8: 13; Deeds, Colossians 3: 9).

The word office is a voluntary addition from the translators, which has two synonyms, “function” and “position”. Could we think of office as a function in the lowest of positions? I sense the “spirit of benefactors” in the above KJV wordings and their outworking practices in today’s understanding.

Another word is hegeomai (2233). It is to lead or go before, go first, lead the way. Metaphorically it means to lead out before the mind, i.e. to view, regard, esteem, count. I consider, I thought, regard, think, esteem, judged, considered, and count are various translations of hegeomai. But in Hebrews 13: 7 we have “remember them which have the rule over you”; Hebrews 13: 17, Hebrews 13: 24, “Salute them that have the rule over you.” Why is “rule over you” the phrase presented to us? Hegeomon (2232) is from hegeomai meaning leader, chief person, governor, prince, ruler and it was not used here or any where else to designate “church hierarchy”. Is this translation the desire of “benefactors” rather than Christ?

Benefactor offices that would rule over the body of Christ exist in books, commentaries, mis-translations and worldly minds, not the spirit of scripture. In the body of Christ benefactors are not workers of good as they are called in the Gentile world; the true are distracted from servant hood by “high” offices; the wrongly motivated are attracted to compete for the glory of it. Apathy towards God is the spectator’s fruit; we become the “non-officed”, the laity. “Bring us milk”, “Keep us warm,” (lukewarm).

“Is There Not A Cause?"

Strong’s 2110

Gary Dudley

Posted By: Bill Bundy

Belonging To The Lord (Kuriokos)     -     November 13th, 2013

As a child, a familiar request at our table, perhaps at yours, was “pass the butter.” Even though it was margarine the distinction was unnecessary. Raising my own family, with more substitutes available, almost any yellow spread was referred to as butter in a loose sense.

At one such meal having both butter and margarine available my youngest son asked me to pass the butter. Pass the butter I did. He disapproved, saying as he pointed to the butter, “That’s not butter”; then pointing to the margarine he said, “That’s butter”. He spoke with conviction.

The long-term misuse of terms caused our discernment to be blunted. Margarine, a highly altered substance, was effectively “slipped” in as an acceptable substitute.

Webster defines church as a building set apart or consecrated for public worship; especially one for Christian worship. (Isn’t non-Christian church an oxy-moron, i.e. can you have a non-Christian church)?.

Webster defines church as public worship; religious service.

Webster defines church as all Christians. (That’s better)

Webster defines church as a particular sect, denomination or division of Christians: as the Methodist Church, Church of England, (though scripture opposes sects, denominations or divisions, within his body.)

Webster defines church as the ecclesiastical government of a particular religious group or its power, as opposed to secular government.

Webster defines church as the profession of the clergy; clerical profession, (so we have professional and non-professional Christians and the professionals are the church?)

Webster defines churchgoer as a person who attends church, especially one who does so regularly, (this goes well with the other substitutes).

Church comes from the word kuriakos. It means belonging to a lord or ruler or belonging to the Lord. Scripture uses it twice, never translating into our word church, but in reference to a meal and a day that belongs to the Lord.

“Therefore when you meet together, it is not to eat the Lord’s (kuriakos) supper…” (I Corinthians 11:20).

“I was in the Spirit on the Lord’s (kuriakos) day…” (the Revelation of John 1:10), (consider Romans 14, highlighting verses five and six before saying this must be Sunday).

In the King James Version church is used eighty times, churches thirty five times.

All but one (Acts 19: 37) of these occurrences uses the word ekklesia, which means a calling out; though it was a common term for the congregation of the called people, can not just one individual “be called out”, i.e. ekklesia? Episunagoge (1997), the act of gathering or assembling together, a complete collection, best describes our practice of assembly (II Thessalonians 2:1, Hebrews 10:25).

Does Webster know what real butter is or did he serve us a big helping of the margarine we prefer? To misunderstand what church is, misleads us.

Church is not a building for “Christian” ceremony at a certain address; it is not a group of clergymen under some organizational sect or independent of such. It is belonging to the Lord; the ekklesia or called out ones are individuals called out of the world for personal relationship to God. As few as two or three may “episunagoge” (assemble) in His name with Him in their midst. They can bind and loose in heaven and earth (Matthew 18:15-20).

"Is There Not A Cause?"

Strong’s 2960

Gary Dudley

Posted By: Bill Bundy