Bible Terms

Listed in alphabetical order, with Chinese equivalents. 中文在下面

The table of contents. Apostle, atonement, begotten, Christ, Covenant, evangelism, faith, gospel, heaven, hell, holy, inspiration, Jesus, justify, Kingdom of God, Lord, Melchizedek, paraclete, paradise, redeem, repent, sanctify, satan, sin, son of God, son of man, word, worship. Supplement: apocalypse, apocrypha.

To go directly to one of those entries, use your “find” function (ctrl-F or command-f). In the search box that will appear at the upper right, type in the word you want followed by a period and press “return.”

Apostle. 使徒. Apo in Greek means “away from.”The “stl” is a shortened form of the Greek word that means “send.” Apostle is a shortened form of the Greek word “apostolos.” An apostle therefore is someone who is “sent out,” which implies the apostle is representing another and bringing that person’s message. Though this concept could also be translated by words like missionary or ambassador, yet the term “apostle” in English usage is usually reserved for the first generation of leaders. (There are a few denominations today who call their leaders “apostles.”) The disciples of Jesus became apostles when Jesus said the them, “As the Father has sent me, so send I you.” (John 20:21) Paul is called an apostle because Christ personally called him, and the church at Antioch sent him off at the Holy Spirit’s direction. (Acts 10:1-3) Jesus calls himself an apostle in Hebrews 3:1, since he was sent to earth by the father. Another word with “stl” is epistle. The “epi” means “upon,” so an epistle is something that is written down and then sent. It is shortened from the Greek word “epistolos.” More words with “apo” are at the end of this article.

Atonement. 挽 回 祭. In English Bibles, this translates a word that means “sins are forgiven by blood.” The background is that the Old Testament temple had a box (the covenant box, also called the ark of the covenant.) Once a year the high priest would pour blood taken from a sacrificed animal onto the cover of that box, and the people’s sins would then be forgiven. In the Hebrew language, the consonants for the name of the cover, KPR, were the same as the consonants for the resulting forgiveness. You can see these consonants in the Jewish holiday that continues to this day called “yom kippur.” “Yom” means “day,” and “kippur” is that Old Testament term about sins being forgiven by blood. In Greek language, the same word is also used for the cover and for the resulting forgiveness. This word is used in 1 John 2:2 to describe how Jesus takes care of our sins. Type that reference into the search box at Biblehub and note the many different words that English translators have used to express that concept, such as propitiation, expiation, and atoning sacrifice.

Begotten. This English word first appears in Psalm 2, where God says to the anointed one (Messiah): “You are my son; this day have I begotten you.” This Psalm was sung when the kings were anointed, so we see that the word is not limited to referring to a physical birth, but also has extended uses, as here where it means the bestowal of a status. This wide usage is found in both Hebrew and Greek: in both languages, the word used here sometimes is used for a physical birth, as in the genealogies about who begat whom, and in a spiritual sense, as in being “born again.” This extended usage is see in the Nicene Creed, which says that Jesus is “begotten of his father before all worlds … begotten, not made.” Using it here emphasizes that Jesus eternally existed as God independent from his appearance as a human. Another Greek word, that is made up of the word for only and the word for origin (genesis), is sometimes translated into English as “only begotten,” for example in the verse “he gave his only begotten Son” (John 3:16.) (Biblehub shows that many translators write “only son” for this verse.) Yet another Greek word, made of “first” and “born,” is in the verse “the first begotten from the dead” (Revelation 1:5, which some Bibles translate as “firstborn from the dead.”) The English translators chose the word “begotten” in these cases because the verse was clearly meant to indicate something more than just a physical birth.

Christ.  . John 1:41 says that Christ is the Greek word that corresponds to the Hebrew-based word Messiah 弥 赛 亚, 彌 賽 亞. Both these words mean “anointed one.” 受膏者. In the Old Testament, it usually refers to becoming a king. For example, Samuel anointed David to be king. God promised David that one of his descendants would be king forever. After the Jews were conquered in 586 BC, the people longed for this king, the “promised Messiah,” to appear.  When we say “Jesus Christ,” we mean “Jesus the King.” Many characteristics of the Messiah are mentioned in Psalm 2: he is called God’s son, he will rule over the nations, (this comes true in Revelation 19:15) and he is the way to avoid Gods wrath – verse 12 uses the phrase “kiss the son,” that is, to be in a relationship of dependence on the Messiah, as Jesus teaches about himself in John 14:6, “no one comes to the Father but by me.”

Church. 教会,教會. This English word is used to represent the Greek word ekklesia. The “ek” means “out,” and the “kl” is a shortened form of the Greek root “kal,” which means “call.” The ekklesia are the “called-out ones.” The Jewish scholars who translated the Old Testament from Hebrew to Greek selected this term to refer to gatherings of the people of God (for example in Psalm 107:32). The New Testament preserved this meaning, and expanded it to include Jesus-believers, whether they had been Jews or not. Some Bible verses containing this word use it to mean the entire body of all people who believe in Jesus. (for example, Colossians 1:24).  Other passages use it to refer to a local gathering of believers (for example, Philemon verse 2). (For another word with the root “kl,” see paraclete.) The English word “church” has an interesting background. The underlying Greek word is not found in the Bible, but was used in early centuries to represent believers as a group. The word is Kyriakos. Kyrios means Lord, so the word means “those who belong to the Lord.” In the process of language change through the years, the K became pronounced as ch, the Greek y is often changed into the English u, and the ending was dropped, resulting in the word “church.”

Covenant. 约,約. A covenant is like an agreement or treaty. God made a covenant with Noah, in which God promised never again to destroy the world by water. Some Jewish scholars regard this as God’s covenant with the entire human race. But the covenant the Bible is most concerned about is the one that God made with Abraham, by which he constituted Abraham’s descendants as God’s people. This covenant was reaffirmed several times, for example, to Moses and to Joshua Jeremiah prophesied that there would be a new covenant. Jesus revealed that the new covenant had arrived when, in instituting holy communion, he said “this is my blood of the new covenant.” The main question is whether the new replaces the old, or whether the new is a continuation of the old. I will give reasons why I see it as a continuation. First of all, one statement in the covenant was repeated each time it was renewed: the statement that “I will be your God.” This is even repeated in Revelation 21:3 as the culmination of earth history. Secondly, gentiles are explicitly brought into the covenant with Abraham, for Galatians 3:14 says “He redeemed us in order that the blessing given to Abraham might come to the Gentiles through Christ Jesus,” Paul explains that it is not those with the DNA of Abraham but those with the faith of Abraham who carry on the promise of the covenant, for Romans 4:16-17 says “Therefore, the promise comes by faith, so that it may be by grace and may be guaranteed to all Abraham’s offspring—not only to those who are of the law but also to those who have the faith of Abraham. He is the father of us all. As it is written: “I have made you a father of many nations.” Gentiles are also explicitly given the titles that were used of the people of Israel. 1 Peter 2:9 calls Gentiles “a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession.” There are also elements of the Old Covenant that were continued but transformed in the new. The old had priests and sacrifices that had to be repeated, while in the new those are transformed into one single sacrifice and a high priest who lives forever. The temple in the old testament was a brick and mortar building, but in the new testament Jesus is the temple (a temple is a place where God lives), and because we are united to Jesus, we are temples too. Jesus explicitly said he did not come to abolish the law, but to fulfil it. Our being grafted into the covenant is what makes it possible for us to use the Psalms as our own expressions of worship, for the “steadfast love” spoken of there means the love that is guaranteed to people who are of the covenant. Jeremiah 31:31 spoke of a “New Covenant,” which repeated the concept of God being God to us, and the New Testament gets its name from the Christian belief that the New Covenant has arrived with the coming of Christ Jesus. When instituting the Lord’s Supper, Jesus himself said “This is my blood of the New Covenant.” For more, see article on Christian use of the Old Testament. BACKGROUND OF THE WORDS. The Old Covenant is described in the Old Testament, and the New Covenant in the New Testament. The words “covenant” and “testament” are translations of one and the same original bibilcal word (Hebrews Brith and Greek diatheke). The English word covenant is copied from the Latin “convenir” (to agree), and the English word testament is copied from the Latin word “testamentum,”( the directions someone leaves to be carried out upon his death, as his “last will and testament.” ) It is a matter of custom and convenience for us English speakers that our translators use “covenant” when the emphasis is upon the promise, and use “testament” when the emphasis is upon the certification through death. See Hebrews 9:13-22, where the word “diatheke” is translated as “covenant” in verse 15 and as “will” in verse 16.

Discipling.  做门徒,做門徒. Christ commands us to make disciples of all nation. Our role in making disciples is to get to know people,share the gospel, and determine their response. After someone confesses faith in Christ and receives baptism, we are to help them in an ongoing process of nurture and growth.

An important early step for a new Christian is to establish that assurance of faith is not based on feelings but on the promises of God’s Word, and to become aware of one’s position in Christ. During the first month, help them to grasp the organization of the Bible and its terminology, and to start a habit of daily prayer and Bible reading. New believers have a unique credibility with their non-Christian friends so we should encourage them to talk about their new faith.

Continuing on, help them develop a Christian worldview by learning more and more about these 6 areas: (1) the nature of humanity as created in God’s image but marred by rebellion; (2) The nature of God as love, shown in the mutual love of Father, Son, and Holy Spirit which is  extended to you; (3) God’s love shown in sending Jesus to pay the penalty of your sins on the cross (justification); (4) the Holy Spirit’s presence giving you comfort and strength, and moving you toward maturity (sanctification), giving you purpose in life as you “do the good works God has prepared for you to do (Ephesians 2:10); (5) your unity with all other believers and your function in that community (6) living in awareness of the shortness of this life and the promise of your eternal home. More on these six. The goal of growth is to become more and more mature. The Greek word translated mature is telos, which means fulfilling the intended purpose, like an acorn becoming an oak tree. God’s plan is “to conform us to the image of His son (Romans 8:29). See these suggestions for your own growth. See more suggestions.

Evangelism. see gospel.

Faith. Faith and Belief are translations of one and the same Greek word, pistos, which means “having become convinced.” It is also the word that describes the kind of relationship a believer has with God, one of dependence and trust.  See more

Glory. 荣耀. This word has multiple uses in the Bible. In the Christmas story, it is sung by the angels as a word of worship. That meaning is expressed more fully in Psalm 29:2 “Give to the LORD the glory of His name,” where the following line makes that action synonymous with worship: “worship the LORD in the beauty of holiness.” The core meaning of the underlying Hebrew word, kabob, is weightiness and worthiness, so in giving glory to God” you are expressing his importance. The Greek word is doxa, which in secular Greek referred to one’s reputation, but in the New Testament doxa is to be seen as the translation for the Hebrew term kabod, with its overtones of the importance which belongs only to God. and by adding logos, which means “word,”, the term doxology was formed, which means “words of glory.” But the word “glory” is used again in the Christmas story in another way, as something available to our sense experience. The glory of the Lord shown around the shepherds, and that made them afraid. In 1 Kings 8:11, the cloud of smoke in the temple was regarded as the glory of God, that is, His presence was made known by the smoke, and that made the priests afraid to enter the temple. In Psalm 19, God reveals how great He is by the things He has created: “The heavens declare the glory of God.” We are part of that created universe, and Ephesians 1:12 tells says that we also “exist for the praising of His glory,” that is, when people see us, they are supposed to get an idea of how wonderful God is. The most clear way that God has revealed himself is through his son Jesus. John 1:14 says, “we beheld his glory,” that is, we were able to look at Jesus and get an impression of the greatness of God. The verb form of Greek “doxa” is “dokein,” which means “to show,” which reinforces the idea that the word represents a “showing forth” of God. There are also verses where the word glory is used for the supernatural qualities of God that are beyond what we can experience with our earthly senses. In the John 17 prayer, Jesus speaks of “the glory I had with you before the world began. In Exodus 33:18-22, Moses asks to see God’s glory, but God tells Moses that “you cannot see my face, for no one can see me and live.” God has to cover Moses’ face while His glory passes by here, even though elsewhere in Exodus Moses’ encounters with God are described as “face to face.”  What a wondrous turnabout will happen when we are “in glory,” that is, in heaven, where we will see him face to face (1 Corinthians 13:12).  The Hebrew word translated as “glory” is “kabod,” also spelled “chabod.” The name “Ichabod” starts with the prefix “I,” which negates the word, so 1 Samuel 4:21 says “she named the child Ichabod, because the glory of God departed from Israel which the ark was taken.”

Gospel. 福音. This word is a shortened form of the older English Godspel. The “god” here means “good,” and the “spel” means story, as in the English word “spellbound “. This makes it a literal translation of the Greek term, which is evangelize: the “ev” means “good,” and the “angel” means “message.” (An angel is a messenger.) The message is spelled out in 1 Corinthians 15:1-4: that Jesus died and rose, which gives us forgiveness and eternal life. See more


This section will first examine “heaven” 天堂 as the place where God is now, and then “heaven” as the word for where believers go after they die.

(1) Jesus teaches us to invoke God as “Our Father in heaven,” (Matthew 6:9) 我们在天上的父 and this was a familiar concept because it was also found in the prayer that Solomon said at the dedication of the temple, “Listen to the plea of your servant and of your people Israel, when they pray toward this place (the temple). And listen in heaven your dwelling place, and when you hear, forgive.” (1 Kings 8:30 ESV). Solomon though had a wider concept of where God dwells, for earlier in verse 27 he said “Behold, heaven and the heaven of heavens cannot contain You.” (NKJV). Psalm 139 goes further, saying there is no place one can go to flee from God: “If I go up to the heavens, you are there; if I make my bed in the depths, you are there.” (Ps 139:8 NIV). In Jeremiah God says “do I not fill heaven and earth, says the LORD?” (Jer 23:24 NIV). God is everywhere, and yet also “if we love one another, God lives in us and his love is made complete in us.”1 John 4:12 NIV.

All these descriptions could be tied together with a word that is not in the Bible, but is familiar to us in our scientific age. I conceive of God as being in something similar to another dimension, a dimension that is not accessible to our five senses, and that is not tied down to space and time. Using this concept, when we pray “our Father in heaven,” we definitely will not think of Him as far away.

We must not limit God to heaven, for God existed before “in the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.” God will continue to exist even when “the heavens will be set of fire and dissolved” and because he will continue to exist, we then can “await new heavens and a new earth, in which righteousness dwells.”  (2 Peter 3:12-13). So when we talk of God as our heavenly Father, we mean both the one  who exists above and beyond the heavens, and who also is accessible to us in that he fills the heavens that he created.

God created other beings to exist in the heavens that he created, that supernatural though created dimension.  Jesus says that the angels of God are in heaven (Matthew 22:30). Paul calls Satan “the prince of the power of the air.” (Ephesians 2:2 ESV).  Paul also says “For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places.”(Ephesians 6:12 ESV). but that Christ is victorious over them (Ephesians 1:20-21).

Though we cannot sense that dimension, God does have ways of showing Himself to us in our dimension, in ways that our five senses can take in. For details on these ways, see the entries on “inspiration” and “glory.” The Kingdom of Heaven is a different topic. It is Matthew’s culturally sensitive way of describing what Luke calls the Kingdom of God; see “Kingdom of God” on this page.

As you read passages about heaven, it is important to note that many languages, including the biblical languages, use the same word for sky as they do for the dwelling place of God. The term used in Psalm 18:3 about the natural universe:  “When I look at your heavens, the work of your fingers, the moon and the stars, which you have set in place,” is used again in Psalm 2:4 to indicate the place where God is: “He who sits in the heavens laughs; the Lord holds them in derision.”  The Jewish scholars before Christ selected the Greek word for sky, “Ouranos” to translate the Hebrew term. Therefore the New Testament writers also used that Greek word both with the physical meaning, “Look at the birds of the heaven” (Matthew 6:26 ASV) and the supernatural meaning: “both their Master and yours is in heaven,” (Ephesians 6:9 NIV). Fortunately, most of the English translations reserve the word heaven for the supernatural meaning, and translate the physical meaning with “sky” or “air,” as in “the birds of the air.”

(2) As far as where we go when we die, we commonly say that we “go to heaven.” The only verses about the afterlife that actually have the word heaven in them are the teachings about us having treasures laid up in heaven (Matthew 6:20 and similar verses). I am not saying that we shouldn’t use the phrase “go to heaven,” for when we die, the Bible says “the dust returns to the ground it came from, and the spirit returns to God who gave it.”(Ecclesiastes 12:7 NIV) If God is in heaven, and we go to God, it is not illogical to say that “we go to heaven.”

But to get more details after life after death, we need to look at the many verses about this topic that do not happen to have the word “heaven” in them. These verses about where we go after we die can be divided into (a) where we are before  judgment day, and (b) where we are after judgment day.

(a) The Old Testament uses the Hebrew word “sheol” for the place that the dead go to. Sheol does not seem to be a permanent destination for believers, for Psalm 16:10 says “you will not leave my soul in Sheol.” Those who translated the Old Testament into Greek borrowed the word Hades from Greek religion to use here, and that word was translated into English as hell 阴间,陰間.

This verse was quoted by Peter in Acts 2:27 as a proof passage to show that the resurrection of Jesus has Old Testament authority. The Apostles Creed as well, by saying about Jesus that “he descended into hell, the third day he rose from the dead” affirms that the Psalm verse is fulfilled by Jesus.  Because we are united with Jesus by baptism, this verse applies to us as well, because Jesus will raise us up from the dead, not leaving us “in Sheol.”

Another word, paradise, was used by Jesus when he said to the thief on the cross next to him “this day you shall be with me in paradise.” See separate entry about that word.

(b) In regards to our eternal destination. Jesus says that at Judgment day, he will separate people as a shepherd separates sheep and goats. To one group he will say “come you who are blessed of my Father, enter your inheritance,” and “the righteous will to into eternal life.” (Matthew 25:31-46.)

The location of that eternal life is described in Revelation 2:1 where it is called “new heavens and a new earth,” in other words, a new universe, because  “the first  earth had passed away.” (Peter teaches about this in 2 Peter 3:7-13). Jesus calls it “the age to come” in Matthew 12:32. So when we say “I will go to heaven,” it is a short way of saying that “I will get a resurrection body after judgment day and will inhabit the new heavens and the new earth.”

Hell. (1) The Old Testament uses the Hebrew word sheol as the term for the place of the dead, not differentiating between before or after judgment day. It seems though that believers expected that they would be delivered from this place. (Besides Psalm 16:10, also see Psalm 86:13). When putting the Old Testament into Greek (to form the Septuagint, before 150 BC), the Jewish scholars selected the word Hades (which was used in Greek religion to mean the place of the dead) to translate the Hebrew word sheol.   This word was translated into English as hell. 阴间,陰間

(2) The New Testament teaches that believers go directly to Jesus while awaiting judgement day (they do not go to hell or sheol). As far as unbelievers before judgement day, there is a verse that reveals the place where the unsaved dead are: in Luke 16:23 Jesus says that the rich man in the story had gone to Hades, translated into English as hell. 阴间,陰間. This is clearly about his situation before judgement day, because the man’s  bothers are still on earth.

The New Testament has more detail about what happens after judgment day.  When Jesus separates people as a shepherd separates sheep and goats, he says these words to those who are not going to eternal life: “depart from me, you who are cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels,” and “these will go into eternal punishment.” (Matthew 25:31-46.)

Various terms are used to describe this eternal punishment:
a. The place of unquenchable fire. 火烧尽的地方 (Matt 3:12).  
b. The place where the unsaved are cast. (Mt 5:29) , and the place of judgement  (Mt 23:33). The Greek word used here is Gehenna, also translated into English as hell. 地狱. It was not originally a Greek word, but is a Greek spelling of a Hebrew place called “ge Hinnom,” which means “the valley of Hinnom.” That valley was just south of Jerusalem. In Old Testament times, the Canaanites used to sacrifice their children to their god Baal in this valley. As time passed, this word began to be used to refer the place of punishment of the ungodly.
c. The place where Satan and the unsaved will be cast at Judgement Day. Rev 20:15 calls it the Lake of Fire. 火湖, that burns with fire and brimstone (Rev 21:8).
d. The place of outer darkness  where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth (Mt 8:12). 作恶的会被丢在火炉里,在那里必要哀哭切齒
e. The place where the angels who sinned are now. 2 Peter 2:4 calls it by the Greek word Tartarus, translated into English as hell. 翻译为地狱

Holy. 圣洁的,聖潔的. This English word was chosen to translate the Hebrew word “kadosh.” The meaning is “set apart from the commonplace.” Early in the Old Testament it was used to described special places (holy ground, holy temple). The cups used in worship in the temple were holy because they were set apart for God’s use. Then the word was used to describe the people of Israel, a “holy nation.” Then the word holy was used to describe God, since He is the One most different from commonplace. In Isaiah 6:3, the angels use it as a worship term directed toward God. The impact of seeing God in his perfection caused Isaiah to be conscious of his imperfection.  This angel song, “Holy Holy Holy,” was sung in the Jewish synagogue service, and is still sung in many Christian churches around the world. The apostle John heard angels sing it (recorded in Revelation 4:8). The Greek word used is hagios; you may know that a large historic church in Constantinople is called Hagia Sophia (Holy Wisdom).  In the New Testament, those who believe in Jesus are again called a “holy nation.” (1 Peter 2:9) The Latin word is Sanctus, which is the basis for the English term “sanctification,” to grow in holiness. Due to French influence on the English language, that Latin root, sanct, became the word “saint.”  The word “saints” means “holy ones,” designating that believers are set apart from the commonplace for God’s use. Paul calls all Christians “saints” in Ephesians 1:1. This reminds us that those who believe in Jesus become part of the “holy nation,” the same people of God made up of believers in the Old Testament. Colossians 1:22 assures us that by his death Christ presents us as holy before God. 1 Thessalonians 4:3 tells us that it is God’s will for us to be sanctified. In that sentence the word means that our separateness from the world around us should increasingly show itself in our behavior, that we would behave differently from those who do not know God. The Berean Study Bible translates the portion this way: “For it is God’s will that you should be holy: You must abstain from sexual immorality;  each of you must know how to control his own bodya in holiness and honor,  not in lustful passion like the Gentiles who do not know God; ….For God has not called us to impurity, but to holiness. Your rate of progress in sanctification does not cancel your position as a justified one, as someone totally accepted by faith in Christ. That’s because your justification was never based on your behavior in the first place. Therefore, when we have a moral failure, we do not think, “what can I do so that God will accept me again,” but rather, “since I am already accepted by God, I can depend on God to forgive me and to be on my side in my fight against wrong behavior.”

Holy Spirit圣灵,聖靈。He is one person of the triune God (三位一体的神,三位一體的神 ). He was involved at creation. He brought about Jesus in the womb of Mary. He draws people to believe in Jesus. He gives strength to do God’s will.

In John 14:16 Jesus calls the Holy Spirit “another comforter, who will be with you forever.” That word “comforter” has a rich meaning, and knowing that meaning helps us see why Jesus meant that He was a “comforter,” and that after he ascends into heaven the Holy Spirit will take over that role as “comforter.” The Greek word is the souce of the English spelling Paraclete. The “para” means “alongside, and the “cl” (Greek kl) is short for the Greek root “kal,” which means call. This combination, “one who is called alongside,” was used in the secular Greek world as a word for “lawyer.” That makes it easy to see why this word is sometimes translated into English as “advocate.” The verb form, parakalao, is used four times in Second Corinthians 1: 2. After calling God the God of all COMFORT, Paul continues: “the one COMFORTING us in all our afflictions, so we are able to COMFORT those in every affliction with the COMFORT with which we have been COMFORTED by God. Thus it is easy to see why the word paraclete is sometimes translated as “comforter.” Jesus was a comforter, which is why in John 14:16 He calls the Holy Spirit “another comforter, who will be with you forever.” In, click that verse to see the variety of ways it has been translated. In common usage, therefore, paraclete is a word that refers to the Holy Spirit.

Inspiration. 默示。Paul teaches us that all scripture is inspired by God (2 Tim 3:6). That phrase “inspired by God” is the English translation of a single Greek word, “God-breathed.” Because God is the originator of scripture, that is why it has authority, and why, as Paul continues, it is “profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, so the man of God may be competent, equipped for every good work.” We look at the Bible itself to discover what it means to be inspired. God used real people in a specific culture to reveal truths about himself. Peter tells us that the prophecies in scripture were not “produced by the will of man, but men spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit.” God spoke to Abraham and to Moses, and often in the prophets we see the phrase “thus says the Lord.” When David was anointed as king, “the Spirit of God rushed upon David from that day forward” (1 Samuel 16:13), and we can see the result in the Psalms that he wrote. When Paul used the word scripture in the first sentence above, he was referring to the Old Testament, but the concept is if anything even more true of the New Testament, because “God spoke to our fathers by the prophets, but in these last days he has spoken to us by His Son” (Hebrews 1:2). This direct speaking by Jesus, coupled with the hundreds of Old Testament verses quoted in the New, show why the entire Bible is regarded by Christians as God’s Word to them. That book is the only one accorded this kind of authority. That’s why when someone today says “God spoke to me,” we check the content with the Bible. God also revealed himself in the Bible through actions, such as holding back the waters of the Red Sea, and raising Christ from the dead. God also revealed himself in visions, such as Jacob seeing a ladder, and Paul experiencing “the third heaven,” as well as the entire Book of Revelation. In all this ways, God takes the initiative to reveal himself to us. It is dangerous for us to take the initiative and try to get a communication from God or a feeling of oneness with God. That is why God so strictly forbids occult activity in Deuteronomy 18:10-11.

Jesus. 耶稣,耶穌. The “je” stands for God (short for the name of God Yahweh, with the y changed to a J) and the Sus stands for save, So Jesus’ name means “God saves,” or “God is Salvation.” This clarifies the sentence the angel spoke to Joseph in Matthew 1:21 “you shall call his name Jesus, BECAUSE he will save His people from their sins.” The Old Testament leader Joshua is based on the same two words.  In Hebrew, Jesus sounds like “yeshua,” and Joshua sounds like Yehoshua.” The “ye” is short for the name God told Moses to call him at the burning bush. See previous article, “Jehovah.”

Justify.  义,稱 . Justify means to declare someone just (same Greek word as righteous). To “be justified” means that someone else has declared you just. In our case, God has declared us just, even though we don’t deserve it Romans 3:23-25 says, “all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, but have been justified as a gift of his grace through the setting free (see redeem) which is in Jesus Christ, whom God has set forth as an atonement (see atonement) through faith, in his blood.”  When God justifies you, he immediately begins to sanctify you (see sanctify), but the definitions must be kept distinct. God declares you righteous, and then He gradually changes your attitudes and behavior. You are made a Christian, and then you gradually begin to look like one.

Kingdom of God. Mark, Luke and John use the phrase Kingdom of God, and Matthew uses the term Kingdom of Heaven 天国,天國 to refer to the same thing. Since Matthew was writing to Jews, it is logical to suppose that he is showing sensitivity to their reluctance to say the word God in order to avoid using it in vain.

The kingdom referred to is the one that God promised David, that one of his descendants would be an eternal king (2 Samuel 7:16). Unfortunately, the earthly kingdom of David’s descendants ended in 586 BC, when the Jewish kingdom was destroyed. But the Jews believed God’s promise, so they expected that God would send a king at a future time. They called this future king “the Messiah.” For example, around 700 BC the prophet Micah predicted the destruction, but prophesied that the expected eternal ruler will be born in Bethlehem (Micah 5:2). At the time of Jesus’ birth, the Jewish leaders quoted this verse to tell Herod where the king of the Jews was to be born (Matthew 2:4-6). When Jesus began preaching, he said “The time is fulfilled, and the Kingdom of God is at hand” (Mark 1:15 ESV). By saying this, he indicated that he was the promised king, the Messiah. The book of Hebrews tells us that the kingdom comes in two stages: “Christ, having been offered once to bear the sins of many, will appear a second time, not to deal with sin but to save those who are eagerly waiting for him”  (Hebrews 9:28). Our eternal life will be in that Kingdom of God. But since Christ is our king now, we are already in his kingdom. His parables largely tell us what life is like now in his kingdom.

Lord. 主。In the English language we use this term to show submission to someone who has a higher rank than we do. For example, peasants in the Middle Ages called their rulers “Lord.” We are showing submission to God when we address God as “Lord.” 

LORD. 耶和华,耶和華.Your Bible may sometimes print the word lord in capital letters, as LORD. LORD all in caps is used whenever the original Hebrew word is God’s name that was told to Moses at the burning bush in Exodus 3:14. Here is a further explanation:

The Hebrew Bible was written using only consonants, and the consonants for that name were YHWH. No one can prove how that name was pronounced, but the commonly used way is “Yahweh.” That word was a form of the word that means “to be.” One could conclude that God here was calling himself  “the existent one,” as explained by Jesus in John 5:26: “For as the Father has life in himself, so he has granted the Son also to have life in himself.” The first part of this name can be seen at the end of the names Isaiah and Zachariah, and at the beginning of the names Jesus and Joshua (see next article). As the years went by, the Jewish people stopped pronouncing this name, in order make sure that they did not disobey the commandment “do not take the name of the Lord your God in vain.” Whenever they read the Bible aloud and came to the consonants YHWH, they said their word for Lord instead. That word is Adonai. In the middle ages, Jewish scholars devised a way to write vowels by putting symbols under the consonants. Under the consonants YHWH, they wrote the consonants for Adonai, since that was the word they were planning to say.  In the 1800’s a man in England combined the consonants for YHWH with the vowels for Adonai, and produce the word Jehovah. He used J instead of Y at the beginning because In the course of language development, many words that began with ‘y” were changed to a ‘J” in English. The sound “v” was already an alternate way to pronounce the Hebrew consonant W.

When Jewish scholars translated the Hebrew Bible into Greek, they used the Greek word for Lord (Kyrios) at the places where the Hebrew Bible had YHWH.  That was the same word they used to address their emperors. This custom continues in most English Bible translations: When you see the word LORD in capital letters in your English Bible Old Testament, it indicates that the original Hebrew word there was YHWH. Since the New Testament was written in Greek, the word “Lord” is the Greek word Kyrios.

Melchizedek.    . He was the king of Salem, which later became Jerusalem, at the time of Abraham. In Genesis 14:18 he is called a “priest of the most high God.” Abraham in the next verse makes an offering to him of one-tenth of the goods he had just received from a military victory. He is mentioned again in Psalm 110:4 where it calls the Messiah a priest in the line of Melchizedek. This suggests that when David captured Jerusalem he would have taken the right to carry on that priestly line. This idea is not explicitly stated in the Old Testament, but it helps to understand Hebrews chapter 7, where Psalm 110 is applied to Jesus, the everlasting King promised to David. Hebrews 7 says that Jesus is our great high priest, because even though he is not in the family of Levi, the ones designated by God to be Old Testament priests, Jesus is a descendant of David, and thus a priest of the most high God in the line of Melchizedek. As our high priest, Jesus continually offers intercession for us and acts as our go-between in our prayers to God (Hebrews 7:25) and most of all offered up an eternal sacrifice for our salvation (verse 27). The sacrifice as himself.

Messiah. See Christ

Paradise.  乐园,樂園。This word is used in the Bible to refer to (1) the garden where Adam and Eve lived; (2) a place that that exists now in the supernatural realm, where believers will go to when they die, and (3) after Judgment day, the place where believers will spend eternal life. Genesis 2:8 says that Adam and Eve were placed into a garden (Hebrew “gan”). When the Jewish scholars translated the Hebrew Bible into Greek, they chose the word paradise, which Greek had borrowed from Persian, to describe that place (Usage 1. English translates this place as a “garden,” 园 子,園 子, directly from Hebrew). That place had a tree of life, and Revelation 22:2 tells us that our eternal life in the new heavens and new earth will also include a tree of life. So God promises in Revelation 2:7 “to the one who conquers, I will grant to eat of the tree of life which is in the paradise of God.” (usage 3). When Paul had his visions of God, he said he was taken up to paradise to see the visions (2 Corinthians 12:3, usage 2). When the thief died on the cross, Jesus told him, “today you will be with me in paradise.” (Luke 23:43, usage 2).

Redeem.   . This word translates the Greek term “set free.” It was chosen by the Jews who translated the Old Testament into Greek to describe the event of escape from Egypt. When Jesus rose from the dead, that same word was seen as a good one to describe the freedom Jesus gives us from sin and death. Go to Biblehub and see the many different ways peoples have translated Colossians 1:13-14, which says that God “rescued us from the oppression of darkness and transferred us into the kingdom of his the son he loves, in whom we have the setting-free (redemption), the forgiveness of sins.”

Repent. 悔改. The underlying Greek word is metanoia. “Meta” means “change,” and “noia” refers to your thinking process. Repentance expresses that your viewpoint toward your sins has changed from your old way of trying to excuse it to looking at it the same way God does: God hates it. See more

Sanctify. 成圣,成聖.  Sanct is the Latin word for holy. When God declares us just (justifies us) he also begins to sanctify us, that is, to transform our attitudes and behavior toward Christ-likeness. 1 Thessalonians 4:3 says “this is the will of God, your sanctification (Greek term here is based on hagios, which means holy. See Holy, above), that you reject sexual sin.” Your rate of progress in sanctification does not cancel your position as a justified one, as someone totally accepted by faith in Christ. That’s because your justification was never based on your behavior in the first place. Therefore, when we have a moral failure, we do not think, “what can I do so that God will accept me again,” but rather, “since I am already accepted by God, I can depend on God to forgive me and to be on my side in my fight against wrong behavior.” See more on walking in newness of life.

Satan. 撒旦, devil. 魔鬼, Beelzebub or Beelzebul 别 西 卜. All these words refer to one and the same supernatural enemy of God. Each word has a different origin, so together they fill out the description of that enemy.
Satan means opponent. Jesus uses the word in that way when he tells Peter, “get behind me, Satan.” Matthew 16:23
Devil (in Greek “diabolos”) means deceiver.
Lucifer comes from the Greek word for light. This name is in Isaiah 14:12, where some English Bibles translate his name as “morning star, son of the dawn”   明 亮 之 星. It stresses his ability to appear as “an angel of light,” that is, to appear to be good. (2 Cor 11:14)
This enemy is also called “tempter,” “father of lies,” “the evil one,” “serpent.”
His actions include “seeking someone to devour,” “oppression.” (Acts 10:38). The English word devil is also used to translate “demons” 鬼,who are servants of Satan.  Beelzebub refers to the leader of the  demons. It may be another way to pronounce Baalzebub, one of the Lords of the ancient religions of Canaan.

Sin. 罪,过错,违背神,過錯,違背神。There are many words for “sin” in the Bible. The most common Hebrew word translated by the English word “sin” is the word  “hatah” (the first “h” is written with a dot under it: pronounce it like the ch at the end of the word Bach). The corresponding Greek word chosen by the Jewish scholars before 150 BC is “hamartia,” which then is used in the New Testament. Both words mean “missing the mark.”

In the Bible, the “mark” referred to is the commands of God, for the Bible explains “Everyone who commits sin also breaks the law; sin is the breaking of law” (1 John 3:4). For example, when Joseph in Egypt was tempted with sex outside of marriage, he said “how can I do this great wickedness and sin against God?” (The word for wickedness here means evil.) We may hurt others, but in so doing, we actually sin against God, as David admitted when he said to God concerning his murder of Bathsheba’s husband “Against you, you only, have I sinned, and done what is evil in your sight” (Psalm 51:4).

Of the many other Hebrew words that expand on the concept of sinfulness, the following three are the most used: the word “a-won” (pronounce av-own) means to commit a wrongdoing; this is often translated as “iniquity.”

The word pesa (pronounce peh-sha) describes the sinful attitude of rebellion, and is often translated as “transgression.”  Jesus makes clear that the attitude of rebellion against God is not only shown by actions, but seen in our heart and shown in our words (Matthew 5). All three of these words for sins are used in Psalm 51:1-4, where verse four adds another term, “doing evil.” You can see these Hebrew words on by pressing the option “interlin.”

The other word that is used frequently, “asem,” (pronounce ah-shame) designates acts that create guilt, acts that would have demanded offering a sacrifice.  It is often translated “trespass.” An example of the concept is in Leviticus 6:1-7.

The Bible makes sin concrete by providing lists of sins, for example in the Ten Commandments, and in Galatians 5:19-21.  Sometimes the concept is deepened by listing what sinners do not do, as in the Old Testament quotations compiled in Romans 3:9-18.  Sinning produces symptoms, such as guilt and shame.

It is also instructive to see the many words used to describe the solutions for sin, such as “wash away, cleanse, forgive.” The reason that enhancing our concept of sinfulness is valuable is that it shows us the need for a savior, who will apply those solutions to us. Sinning deserves punishment: Romans 6:23 says “the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ.”

In the Old Testament, sin was dealt with by animal sacrifices, but when Jesus came, our sins were washed away by His sacrifice in our place upon the cross.  We deserved to be punished, but Jesus took the punishment for us. See atonement on this page, and see more here.

Son of God.
 神的儿子, 神的兒子.  When Jesus is called Son of God, two themes come into view. For one thing, that term is a description of the Messiah, for in Psalm 2:7 God says to the anointed one “you are my son.” In the second place, it was regarded as Jesus claiming to be equal with God. In John 5:7, the Jews wish to kill Jesus “because you called God your Father, thereby making yourself equal with God.”   In John 17:4 Jesus talks about “the glory he had with the father before the worlds began.” This equality with God is reflected in the formula to be used at baptism: “In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.” (Matthew 28: 19). Here Son does not mean Messiah, but means “God the Son.”

Son of Man. 
人子. Jesus often called himself  “son of man.”  It may be that he wanted his hearers to associate him with someone Daniel saw in a vision, and called “son of man.” This vision is in Daniel 7:13-14. Jesus explicitly applies some themes in this vision to himself. For example, he says he will “come with the clouds of heaven” in Matthew 24:30 and Matthew 26:64.. Having authority over all is reflected in the sheep and goats saying (Matthew 25:32). this authority was prophesied about the Messiah in Psalm 2, and is seen as coming true in Revelation 19. In Mark 2:10, Jesus says that he, since he is son of man, has power to forgive sins, and his enemies say correctly that only God can forgive sins. By this Jesus shows that he is equal with God, and in fact He is God, as it also states in John 1:1.

Soul and Spirit.  
Soul 灵魂,靈魂  sometimes is used to refer to a human being, as in Genesis 46:26 “sixty-six souls (Hebrew “Nephesh”) came with Jacob to Egypt,”  and that is why newer translations say “sixty-six persons.” Sometimes soul refers to the part of a human that is different from the body, as in Psalm 31:9 “My body and soul (Hebrew “nephesh”) are withering away,” and in Revelation 20:4 “I saw the souls (Greek “Psyche”) of those who had been martyred.” Sometimes it refers to something different from both body and spirit, as in 1 Thessalonians 5:23 “may God keep your spirit (Greek “pneuma”) and soul (Greek “psyche) and body blameless” and in Hebrews 4:12 “the word can divide soul and spirit 鬼与灵, 鬼與靈(psyche and pneuma).” Since this verse does not define those terms, commentators typically use soul to include things like mind and heart, and use spirit to mean the part of us that can have a relationship with God. A famous verse that speaks of us as made of body and spirit is Ecclesiastes 12:7 “the dust returns to the ground it came from, and the spirit (Hebrew “ruach”) returns to God who made it.” In each case, you need to read the entire sentence to know which meaning is meant. The third person of the Trinity is called the “Holy Spirit.”

Word. 道 In John 1:1 “word” is an English translation of the Greek word “logos.” That word can be used to mean ordinary speech, but it was also a technical term in Greek philosophy, referring in general to a way of connection between divine and human. In the century before Christ a Jewish intellectual, Philo of Alexandria, applied this idea to the God of the Bible. The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy summarizes Philo as saying “In fact, the logos is only God’s shadow, His image, the instrument by which He created the world, or in a more anthropomorphic way, His “first-born son” or His deputy (Agr. 51). In Fug. 109, the logos is said to be “the Son of God and Sophia”.”

The Holy Spirit inspires John to reveal the concept that Jesus is more than a deputy, but is himself divine, by saying “the logos was God.” John clarifies that he is talking about Jesus when in verse 18 he writes “the Word became flesh.” This concept is expressed in different language in Hebrews 1:2-3: “God has spoken to us by his Son (referring to Jesus) … through whom He made the universe, who is the radiance of His glory and the exact expression of His substance”

Accordingly John 1:1 means that the logos is a term for Jesus who existed from eternity as the second person of the Trinity, equal with the Father and the Holy Spirit.   

Worship. 敬 拜 This English word is a shortened version of an older English word worth-ship, so it means showing worth to someone. In England, noblemen were therefore addressed as “your worship.” When referring to worship toward God, several of the Hebrew words translated as “worship” express the physical posture of bowing down in submission. In the first commandment, in Exodus 20:5, God says “you shall not worship them (idols).” Here the Hebrew word translated as “worship” is “shachach,” which is a standard word for bowing down, as a demonstration of submission. It is the same word used in Genesis 42:6, where Joseph’s brothers bow down to him. 

Jesus refers to the Exodus 20:5 prohibition against worshipping false when he refuses to worship Satan in Matthew 4:10. The word used to translate shachah (worship, 拜) here is the Greek word “proskyneo”. The kyn means “kiss” and the pros means “toward.” This is “kiss” in the sense that it is used in Psalm 2:12, “kiss the son lest he be angry;” the kiss made to a ruler to show submission, so in both Greek and Hebrew the word translated as worship carries the meaning of submission. 

Deuteronomy 6:13 tells us to fear and serve God. That word “fear” is translated as “proskyneo” in Luke 4:8, where the English reads “You must worship the Lord your God and Him only shall you serve.” The New Testament writers thus show how they understood that the Old Testament word “fear” is meant at times as an attitude of submission and thus as a worship word. 

Exodus 20:5 tells us not only not to worship idols, but also not to serve them. The Hebrew word translated “serve” there is “abad,” which is used in a secular sense in Genesis 15:13-14, where God says that the Israelites will serve in a foreign land for 400 years. Psalm 100:2 tells us to serve the LORD with gladness, which I take to mean “have the attitude of an obedient servant.” Numbers 18:21 uses this word for the ritual actions performed by the priests, so for me “serving the LORD” can also means taking part in the public rituals in church. 

A New Testament word for serve is “douleuo,” the usual word for what servant does; in 1 Thessalonians 1:9 this word is used in the phrase “you turned from idols to serve the living God.”  Other New Testament references use another common Greek word for serve, “latreuo.” 事 奉. Paul uses this word in Romans 1:9 to refer to his entire ministry. I make the connection that I demonstrate my service to God in my service toward others.  Hebrews 8:5 uses this word for the ritual actions of the priests. Paul uses this word in Romans 12:2 where he tells us that offering ourselves to God as a living sacrifice constitutes our “service.” Many English translations use the word “worship” here. The New American Standard covers all bases by translating serve here as “service of worship.” The idea of worship as sacrifice also appears in Hebrews 13:15 “Let us offer up a sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruit of lips that acknowledge His name.” 

Praise is used here as a verbal declaration of our attitude of worship. Many lines in the Psalms illustrate expressing worship through praise. In the book of Psalms, a worship sentence often includes why the worship is being given, whether as an expression of what God is like, or what God does. Psalm 100:2 says “praise Him for His wonderful deeds (what He has done), and praise Him for His excellent greatness (what He is like). These two are also seen in two songs of worship in Revelation that well express the intent of worship by starting with words “you are worthy.” 你 是 配 得 In Revelation 4:11, God is worshipped for being creator. In Revelation 5:9-12, Jesus is worshipped for dying for our sins. The word Halleluia is made of the Hebrew words “hallel” (praise”, “u” meaning “all of you,’ and the “ia” stands for Yah, Yahweh.

Yahweh. See LORD.


Apocalypse. Apo means away from,” and calyps is a covering or lid, so  apocalypse means “taking the lid off.” It is the Greek name for the last book of the Bible, called Revelation in English 启示录, 啟示錄, because it takes off the cover so we can see future events. If you turn it into an adjective, apocalyptic, if means any book written in the style of the Book of Revelation, with symbolism and numbers, such as Daniel or Ezekiel.

Apocrypha. Apo means “from,” and crypha means hidden, so apocrypha means “hidden away from.” It is applied to the writings produced in Greek by Jews in the centuries just before Christ which were then inserted into the Greek translation of the Hebrew scriptures. Their name comes from the fact that they were “hidden away” within these books. (Roman Catholicism calls these books “deuterocanonical,” which means “a second authoritative list of books).  Some Protestant bibles include these books, but sets them apart into a  separate section rather than leaving them scattered around the Old Testament.

These are the ones included in the Catholic Bible:
Maccabees 1 & 2. The rebellion against the Greeks, formation of the Hasmonean dynasty.
Judith. Story of a pious widow who beheads an Assyrian general.
Tobit. The father of a pious family. The son, Tobias, drives out a demon from his fiancé.
Wisdom of Solomon. Encourages seeking of wisdom, encouraging to Jews to keep their faith.
Ecclesiasticus, written by Jesus Sirach. The value of wisdom, and many proverbs.
Baruch. (name of Jeremiah’s servant). Words of encouragement for those in exile.
Additions to Esther,  adds detail including royal edicts and prayers said by Esther.
Additions to Daniel: song of the 3 men in the fiery furnace, and Daniel destroys a dragon.

The Eastern Orthodox Bible has those above, plus adds:

Psalm 151. A song written by David about his encounter with the giant Goliath.
1 Ezra. A Guard of the King of Persia reminds him of the obligation to rebuild the temple.
3 Maccabees. Sufferings of the Jews in Egypt under the Greek rulers.
Epistle of Jeremiah. Multiple condemnations of idolatry.

The Ethiopian Bible has a different selection.

See the Glossary of Bible terms on Wikipedia

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圣经词汇:         (繁體字 在下面)


人子. Son of Man.  在四个福音里,耶稣平常称自己为人子,为了要表示祂是500年前但以理在异象所看到的一位超自然的人(但以理书 7:13)。异象里的“人子”驾着天云来,他的国度是永远的。 耶稣被审判的时候引用此经文对大祭司说“后来你们要看见人子坐在那全能者的右边,驾着天上的云降临”(太26:64)。在末日他(人子)会审判人类(太25:32)。他跟神一样有赎罪的权柄 (马可福音2:10),因此他跟神平等的,也就是神。


门徒。Disciple, to disciple.  耶稣有十二个门徒,但是今天每一个跟随耶稣的人可以成为门徒。在太28:19耶稣命令我们“使万民作他的门徒。”帮别人作门徒有三个阶段:做朋友,传扬耶稣,培养到 完全的地步(希伯来书6:1)。在这里“完全”有“成熟”的意思,想种子变成树。(“完全”的原文希腊文的意思就是telos,有“达到目标”的意思)。

培養也有几些阶段。(1) 承认耶稣为主与受洗的时候,要强调的是确定信仰的基础(靠神的应许而不靠情感),和要明白信徒在主里面的地位。(2)在地一个月内,要(a)了解圣经的组织办法和大概的内容,(b)体会圣经专门子,(c)开始日日读经和祷告的习惯,(d)告诉亲人你成为基督徒的事情, (3)接下来要体会神学基本观念:(a)人类学:神按着他的形象造人,但是人违背神。(b)神型学:创造万物的神是三位一体的神:天父,儿子主耶稣基督,圣灵。可参考使徒信经,在此页的最下面。(c)拯救学:因神爱世人,他差遣耶稣牺牲生命赎罪。信而受洗的人必然得救。(d)成圣学:拯救我们之后,圣灵施新生命递给我们,改变我们的思想与动作。我们的部分是日日悔改,求神改变我们。(e)教会学:信耶稣的人构成全世界上的团体,在本地的团体(教会)中我们来一起崇拜与用圣餐,听道,彼此支持。(f)末日学:包括我们个人生命的结束与上天堂,和全世界被审判的那一天。(4)高级研究:参考此网上的神学课程 。


天堂。Heaven. 这个词有时候代表神所在的地方,也有时候代表我们过世后要住的地方。
(-)在主祷文耶稣称神为“我们在天上的父。”所以我们说“神在天上”是可以的,但是意思有点深刻的。所罗门王对神说“天和天上的天尚且不足你居住的”(列王纪上8:27)。诗篇139篇说我们不能够脱离神,因为“我若升到天上,你在那里,我若在阴间下塌,你也在那里。”(诗篇139:8)。还有,“耶和华说:我岂不充满天地吗?”(耶利米书23:24)。到处都有神,一直到“我们若彼此相爱,神就住在我们里面。”(约翰一书4:12)。为了体会“神在天上”的意思,可以考虑使用数学“维空间” 的观念吗?神离我们很近,但是我们的“五种感官”摸不到他。他则有他的办法能够通知到我们(参考此文章里的“启示。”)


好多语言,包括圣经的原文,使用“天”代表两个不一样的观念。第 一个是我们看得见的,有云彩和星星的天,例如诗篇所说的“诸天述说神的荣耀”(诗篇19:1)。第二个是超自然的,不能感觉到的天,例如耶稣所说的“天是神的座位”(太5:34)。



(b) 末日的那一天,圣经鼓励我们说“我们就要和主永远同在”(帖撒罗尼前书4:17)。耶稣会对信徒说“来承受那创世以来为你们所预备的国(太25:34),就是耶稣为我们预备的地方(约14:2)。彼得告诉我们看得见的天和地会被毁灭,然后神会造“新天新地”(彼得后书3:10-13)。神会“擦去一切的眼泪,不再有死亡,也不再有悲哀,痛苦“(启示录21: 1 -4)。信徒说“我要上天堂”的意思是“我要得到复活的神体永远主在神创造的天和地。 ”

天国。Kingdom of Heaven. 在马太福音4:17,耶稣说“天国近了。”在马可福音1:15,耶稣说“ 神的国近了”。这两句的意思是一样的。马可用“神的国”, 因为他的读者是非犹太人,要他们了解耶稣的意思。马太的读者是犹太人。犹太人有习惯不要说出神的名字,所以他们用“天”代替“神。”天国”就是”神的国”。

耶稣所提到的国度就是神应许大卫王的国度,说:“你的家和你的国必在我的面前建立。你的国位也必坚定,直到永远”(撒母耳记下7: 16 )。不幸的,大卫王朝在地上的国度于西元前586被毁灭了。犹太人相信神向大卫的应许,所以他们期待神在祂所定的时间会派一位君王。他们称这位将来要出现的君王为“弥赛亚。”



圣洁. Holy.成圣. Sanctify. 圣洁在原文希伯来文有「分开的」意思,就是「从普通的,不完美,不纯洁的东西分开到神」。在以赛亚书6:3天使赞美神,说神是「圣哉」,因为神是最完美,千万没有缺乏的。旧约时代的崇拜神的建筑物跟普通的建筑物分开给神,所以叫「圣殿」。在出埃及记19:6神称祂的子民为「圣洁的国民」。新约也是这样。约翰在启示录4:8记录天使向神唱「圣哉」。歌罗西书2:21叫我们信耶稣的人「与祂自己和好,都成了圣洁」。所以保罗能够称我们信耶稣的人为「圣徒」。彼得前书2:9说我们跟旧约的子民也是「圣洁的国度」。在神的眼中我们是圣洁,但是我们在行为上不一定看起来圣洁。所以保罗在帖撒罗尼迦前书说神会帮助我们改进行为,说:「神的旨意就是要你们成为圣洁,远避淫行,」;接下来第7节说「神召我们本来不是要我们沾染污秽,乃是要我们成为圣洁」。这个慢慢改进行为的过程叫做「成圣,英文sanctify」。成圣不是得救的条件,而是得救的效果。神已经为了耶稣的宝血接受了我们;神会帮助祂的国民改进行为。

乐园。Paradise. 这个词在新约圣经中出现了三次。(1)保罗看异乡的时候,他说他“被提到乐园里”(哥林多后书12:4),所以这乐园乃是指一个已经存在的地方。乐园一词翻译自希腊文的paradeisos,(乃是英文的paradise)。(这个词是从伊朗文接过来的,意思是“花园。”(2)耶稣在十字架上的时候向跟他在旁边的犯人说“今日你要同我在乐园里了”(路加福音23:43),所以乐园也可以表示我们一过世要去的地方。(3)乐园也表示信徒永远与主同在的地方。耶稣说“得胜的,我必将神乐园中生命树的果子赐给他吃(启示录2:7)。旧约希腊文翻本使用paradeisos翻译伊甸的园。伊甸园原来有生命树,但是因为人违背神,失掉他们跟神美好的关系,结果神不准許那时候的人不准吃其上的果子。但信耶稣的人跟神的关系恢复,因此死后到天堂,可以在那裡享受生命树所给的恒生命。(谢谢David)


约 Covenant。1)跟挪亞。神在创世纪9:11说「我與你們立約:凡有血肉的,不再被洪水滅絕,也不再有洪水毀壞地了。」2)跟亚伯拉。在创世纪17:7-8神向亚伯拉罕说我要與你並你世世代代的後裔堅立我的約,做永遠的約,是要做你和你後裔的神。我要將你現在寄居的地,就是迦南全地,賜給你和你的後裔永遠為業,我也必做他們的神。」第一个观念,做你的神,还在与我们有效,因为保罗在加拉太书3:14向我们非基督徒说 你們既屬乎基督,就是亞伯拉罕的後裔,是照著應許承受產業的了。」所谓的產業就是神会做我们的神。」在末日,同样的观念还在出现。启示录21:1-3记录著者约翰在异乡所经验的: 我又看見一個新天新地…我聽見有大聲音從寶座出來說:「看哪,神的帳幕在人間!他要與人同住,他們要做他的子民,神要親自與他們同在,做他們的神。」

有关神跟亚伯拉罕讲的最后一句,賜給迦南全地为業,那个诺言在所罗门王的时代应验了:以色列国土包括全迦南地。但是以后,因为大部分的以色列人不忠心的跟随主,土地的范围越来越小,一直到公元前586年被敌人战胜,以色列国度结束。在那时候,耶利米先知出现。在耶利米书31:31-33他写: 耶和華說:「日子將到,我要與以色列家和猶大家另立新約。 32 不像我拉著他們祖宗的手領他們出埃及地的時候,與他們所立的約,我雖做他們的丈夫,他們卻背了我的約。」這是耶和華說的。耶和華說:「那些日子以後,我與以色列家所立的約乃是這樣:我要將我的律法放在他們裡面,寫在他們心上;我要做他們的神,他們要做我的子民。」

注意:新约和旧约有相同的地方,就是神会做信徒的神。在路加福音22:30耶稣设立圣餐的时候,他「飯後也照樣拿起杯來,說:「這杯是用我血所立的新約,是為你們流出來的。」希伯来书9:15解释,耶稣做了新約的中保,既然受死贖了人在前約之時所犯的罪過,便叫蒙召之人得著所應許永遠的產業。我们现在生活在新约时代;耶利米的预言在我们身上应验,因歌罗西书3:9-10说不要彼此說謊,因你們已經脫去舊人和舊人的行為, 10 穿上了新人;這新人在知識上漸漸更新,正如造他主的形象。」

伊甸园, 看乐园

地狱。Hell. 这个词的意思可以分:(1) 审判前的情况。 (2)审判后的情况。

(1)旧约使用希伯来文的sheol指出死人去的地方。住此地方明显是暂时的,因诗篇说“因你必不将我的灵魂撇在阴间(sheol) ”(诗篇16:10)。新约引用这经文使用希腊文的hades翻译sheol,再加上说此经文预言耶稣的复活(使徒信经2:22-32)。因为耶稣复活,信徒也会复活(哥林多前书15:20)。



犯罪的天使被丢在tartarus,翻译为地狱。 (彼得后书2:4)

希腊文的Gehenna平常翻译为地狱:“不叫全神下入地狱”(太5:29)也叫“地狱的刑罚(太23:33)。Gehenna的来源于希伯来文的ge Hinnom,一个在耶路撒冷南边的山谷,在旧约时代迦南地人在此地方烧掉孩子当县级。过了时间,那恐怖的意思接过来代表末日后的审判地方。




麦基洗德. Melchizedek. 麦基洗德是人物,生活在亚伯拉罕的时代。创世纪14:·18说麦基洗德「是至高神的祭司」。他则不是犹太教的祭司,因为犹太教的祭司还没出现,但亚伯拉罕认出他是真正的祭司。 (犹太教的祭司是亚伯拉罕子孙中利未族的后裔)。过了一千年,神在诗篇110:4有关弥赛亚说他「是照着麦基洗德的等次永远为祭司。」再过一千年,新约的希伯来书7:14这样解释:虽然耶稣不是利未的后裔,但是因为耶稣是弥赛亚,结果按照诗篇110:4,耶稣还是一位祭司。 (耶稣叫祭司因为他奉献自己为献祭)。 (参考希伯来书4:14到8:1)十二画


使徒.  Apostle. 在圣经里,使徒代表一位被差遣出去传扬耶稣信息的人。例如,保罗在使徒行传13章2节被一个教会派出去,因此他称为使徒保罗。耶稣在约翰福音20章21节向他的门徒说「父怎样差遣了我,我也照样差遣你们」。因此耶稣12门徒也称为使徒。

耶和华. God’s Name. 耶和华是神的名子。在出埃及记3章14节,摩西问神祂叫什么名字。神回答说:「我是自有永有的」。这句话在希伯来语有「耶和华」的声音,跟希伯来语的「是」有关系,也可以翻译为「我是存在的来源」。在15节神继续说:「耶和华是我的名字」。过了几百年,犹太人停止说出「耶和华」,为了要避免违背十诫里的「不可妄称耶和华你的神的名」。所以犹太人读圣经的时候,每一次遇见「耶和华」的时候,要代替念「主」。后来旧约翻译到希腊文的时候,翻译者每一次遇见「 耶和华」就会写下「主」。英文圣经使用这个习惯,用「主」代替「耶和华」,但是中文翻译保留原文「耶和华」的名称。新约圣经因为原文是希腊文,继续用「主」代表神,所以在新约「耶和华」这个名称不见了。

耶稣。Jesus. 祂是人类的救主,生活在公元后的第一个世纪,被钉在十字架死了,赎人类的罪, 「因从死里复活,以大能显明是神的儿子」(罗1:4 )。耶稣是三位一体」父,子,圣灵里的「子,」所以称为「神的儿子。(但是耶稣跟父和圣灵是平等的,永远存在的)。 「子」代表他有儿子的地位,不代表他是从父出生的。在约翰福音10:30耶稣说「我与父原为一。」在约8:58耶稣使用旧约圣经的「耶和华(自有永有)」的意思说:「 还没有亚伯拉罕就有了我。 」(原文的希腊文说「还没有亚伯拉罕,我就是。」耶稣这个名字也有意义。「耶稣」的「稣」在希伯来文有「拯救」的意思。「耶」是耶和华的「耶」 ,代表耶稣是那为自有永有的一部分。这样耶稣名字意思就是「神拯救。 」 我们就能够了解马太福音1章20-23节:一位天使向约瑟说「大卫的子孙约瑟, 不要怕! 只管娶过你的妻子马利亚来, 因他所怀的孕是从圣灵来的。 他要生一个儿子, 你要给他起名叫耶稣, 因他要将自己的百姓从罪恶里救出来。 这一切的事成就是要应验主借先知所说的话,说: 必有童女怀孕生子; 人要称他的名为以马内利。( 以马内利翻出来就是神与我们同在) 」。在下面参考「基督 」


神。 God. 圣经鼓励我们依靠创造万物的神,在中文也可翻译为「上帝」和「天主」。在出埃及记3章14节,摩西问神祂叫什么名字。神回答说:「我是自有永有的」。这句话在希伯来文有「耶和华」的声音。在圣经也平常叫神为「主」。圣经说只有一个真神,构成天父,儿子,圣灵。神永远存在,但是2000年前儿子成为人,取名字叫耶稣,称号是基督(希伯来文「弥赛亚」。耶稣被钉在十字架上,牺牲生命赎我们的罪,第三日复活了。他升了天,坐在圣父的右边,同时也与我们同在。他还要光荣地降临,审判生者死者,他的神国,万世无疆。约翰一书4:8-10说「神就是爱。神差祂独生子到世间来,使我们借着祂得生,神爱我们的心在此就显明了。不是我们爱神,乃是神爱我们,差祂的儿子为我们的罪做了挽回祭,这就是爱了」。圣灵吸引人相信,也天天给我们力量面对困难。参考此资料的尼西亚信经,保惠师,耶稣,耶和华。

保惠师. Comforter, 圣灵Holy Spirit. 这个字的原文希腊文有「来到旁边帮忙」的意思。耶稣在约翰福音14:16-17说「「我求父,父就另外赐给你们一位保惠师,叫他永远与你们同在, 就是真理的圣灵」。耶稣说「另外」表示祂自己会帮助我们,圣灵也会。圣灵是三位一体神的第三位。圣灵吸引人相信耶稣,因为哥林多前书说「若不是被圣灵感动的,也没有能说「耶稣是主」的」。圣灵也给信徒力量来成就神的旨意。保罗在以弗所书求神「借着祂的灵,叫你们心里的力量刚强起来」。圣灵赐给人高品质行为,加拉太书5:22-3说「 圣灵所结的果子,就是仁爱、喜乐、和平、忍耐、恩慈、良善、信实, 温柔、节制」。圣灵交给人能利来服侍人,因哥林多前书12:7说「7 圣灵显在各人身上,是叫人得益处 」。圣灵感动那些写下圣经的人,因彼得后书有关圣经的著者说「预言从来没有出于人意的,乃是人被圣灵感动,说出神的话来」。

信心。Faith, belief. 原文希腊文的意思是“被确定“。在社会上,我们认识一个人,看他是可靠的,就发现到我们信任他。相信耶稣有点相似的。有人给我们介绍耶稣,我们认识到他的本质和他的动作,就发现我们依赖他。圣经加上另外一个舱面,就是生灵在我们心里面的工作:哥林多前书第12章第3节说”若不是被圣灵感动的,也没有能说’耶稣是主’的。“我们信耶稣的人要感谢圣灵感动我们。以弗所书2章8-9节说” 你们得救是本乎恩, 也因着信; 这并不是出于自己, 乃是神所赐的;也不是出于行为, 免得有人自夸。马可福音16章16节说“信而受洗的, 必然得救“。神欢迎我们已经得救的人在困难中来以来祂宝贵的应许。

荣耀Glory。1) 在圣经里,有时候人用「荣耀」赞美神,例如在耶稣诞生的是后,天使赞美神说在至高之處榮耀歸於神」。2)有时候圣经用荣耀代表神给我们启示自己的办法。神是灵,是看不见的;超过我们能够领会。不只如此,神也禁止人看到他。在出埃及记第33章,摩西邀请神让他看到祂的面。神回答「你不能看見我的面,因為人見我的面不能存活。」所以神用别的办法表示祂与我们同在。这类的办法可以称为「神的荣耀」。例如说,在耶稣诞生的时候「有主的使者站在(牧羊人)旁邊,主的榮光四面照著他們,牧羊的人就甚懼怕。」(路加福音2:9)。牧羊人惧怕,但是没有死。另外有几个例子:诗篇19:1说「諸天述說神的榮耀」。我们看宇宙,醒悟神比宇宙更大;我们接着看诸星星就醒悟神的伟大,但是不直接的看神。在耶稣的时代,人看耶稣,可以醒悟神的特质。约翰福音1:18说「從來沒有人看見神,只有在父懷裡的獨生子(耶稣)將他表明出來。」然后在17章4节耶稣说「我在地上已經榮耀你,你所託付我的事,我已成全了。」虽然人不能直接的看到神,但是看耶稣被钉在十字架的时间,人就知道「神是爱。」因为耶稣住在信徒里,耶稣也能够藉着我们的行为表示出神的存在和特质。在马太福音5:16耶稣说「你們的光也當這樣照在人前,叫他們看見你們的好行為,便將榮耀歸給你們在天上的父。」因为耶稣感动我们,我们跟星星一样可以「述說神的榮耀」。

神的儿子 Son of God. 约翰福音3:16说「神爱世人,甚至将祂的独生子赐给他们」。那位独生子就是耶稣。那句「独生子」最早在诗篇2:7出现。在那里神向弥赛亚说「你是我的儿子,我今日生你。」所以你称耶稣为神的儿子,就算是承认他是你的弥赛亚(就是那位受膏者的,宇宙的君王,世界的救主)。不止如此,耶稣也是三位一体永远存在神的第二位。耶稣复活之后,他的门徒多马崇拜他,说「我的主!我的神!」虽然旧约很清楚在申命记6:4说「耶和华我们神是独一的主」,耶稣不否认多马,而接受他的崇拜,说:「你因看见了我才信,那没有看见就信的有福了!」启示录第5章称耶稣羔羊,说他配得领受崇拜「因为你曾被杀,用自己的血从各族、各方、各民、各国中买了人来,叫他们归于神」。 。 。 「曾经被杀的羔羊是配得权柄、丰富、智慧、能力、尊贵、荣耀、颂赞的!」。 。 。 「但愿颂赞、尊贵、荣耀、权势都归给坐宝座的和羔羊,直到永永远远!在马太福音28:18耶稣叫自己为三位一体神里面,说:「天上地下所有的权柄都赐给我了。 所以你们要去,使万民做我的门徒,奉父、子、圣灵的名给他们施洗,凡我所吩咐你们的,都教训他们遵守。我就常与你们同在,直到世界的末了。」

律法. Law. 这个字用在以下六个不一样的情况:
1). 代表圣经首先五本书,(也叫摩西的书)。在路加福音24:44耶稣对他的门徒说:「这就是我从前与你们同在之时所告诉你们的话说:摩西的律法、先知的书和诗篇上所记的,凡指着我的话都必须应验。(摩西的律法+先知的书+诗篇等书=旧约圣经)

2). 代表神一切记录在旧约的教导,包括命令,故事,和诺言。在约翰福音 12:34 犹太人说「我们听见律法上有话说基督是永存的」。

3). 神的命令,包括意识上的程序。路加福音 1:39说 「约瑟和马利亚照主的律法办完了一切的事」。

4). 对比律法和恩典。加拉太书2:16.说「既知道人称义不是因行律法,乃是因信耶稣基督,连我们也信了基督耶稣,使我们因信基督称义,不因行律法;因为凡有血气的,没有一人因行律法称义。(行善不能帮我们得救,但是信耶稣得救之后,我们被激励做善事。以弗所书2:10说我们「在基督耶稣里造成的,为要叫我们行善,就是神所预备叫我们行的」。)
5)帮我们明白要承认什么罪。在罗马书 7:7保罗说 「非因律法,我就不知何为罪。非律法说「不可起贪心」,我就不知何为贪心。 」
6)带领我们的良心。罗马书2:15 这「律法的功用刻在他们心里」。


崇拜和赞美。 Worship and Praise. 崇拜在原文有「弯曲膝盖并屈服」的意思。启示录4:10-11描述天上的「长老就俯伏在坐宝座的面前,敬拜那活到永永远远的,又把他们的冠冕放在宝座前,说:我们的主,我们的神,你是配得荣耀、尊贵、权柄的」。崇拜不只是聚会的事:我们心里时要抱着这个态度,例保罗在罗马书12:1-2说我们「将身体献上,当做活祭,是圣洁的,是神所喜悦的,你们如此侍奉乃是理所当然的。古典住中东的人有「弯曲膝盖」代表他们心里面的「屈服」的态度。最重要的不是你外面的行动,而是你心里面的态度。彼得前书3:15说「只要心里尊主基督为圣。」


赞美的意思是宣扬神。你说「赞美神」或说「神,我们赞美你」都算是。加细节,例传扬神的本质,或者传扬神所做的事,也可以。这两个陈述在诗篇150:2都出现:「 要因他大能的作为赞美他,按着他极美的大德赞美他」. 哈利路亚是希伯来话:「哈利」有「赞美」的意思;「路」有「你们」的意思,「亚」代表耶和华。所以哈利路亚的意思是「你们来赞美耶和华。」

称义 (declared righteous, justify).罗马书3:10说「沒有義人,連一個也沒有。」信耶稣之后,人还是不公义。但是因为耶稣的缘故,神算我们为义人。所以我们不说「神改变我成为义」而是说“神称呼我为义人。”我虽然不配从神领受任何东西,但是因为我在神的眼中称义,我就会得着永恒的生命,像罗马书3:24说我「如今卻蒙神的恩典,因基督耶穌的救贖,就白白地稱義。」

悔改。Repent. 原文希腊文的意思是「改变你的思想」。我们原来觉得可以做到行动,改变到这件事情是违背神旨意的;我要放弃我的想法,接受神的想法, 就是悔改。我们改变想法,就求神赦免我们,求神改进我们的行为。我们的行为不一定马上改变,所以我们每一次做错就重新悔改,道歉,求赦免,求神的力量改变行为。这就是基督徒的生活方式。

鬼。Evil Spirit, demon. 在圣经里,鬼不代表过世的人,而代表撒旦魔鬼的使者。耶稣在新约里寻常甘鬼。若鬼来打扰我们,我们靠着耶稣的大能叫他离开我们。


麥基洗德 (Melchizedek)。 麥基洗德是人物,生活在亞伯拉罕的時代。創世紀14:·18說麥基洗德「是至高神的祭司」。 他则不是猶太教的祭司,因為犹太教的祭司還沒出現,但亞伯拉罕認出他是真正的祭司。(犹太教的祭司是亞伯拉罕子孫中利未族的後裔)。 过了一千年,神在詩篇110:4有关彌賽亞說他「是照著麥基洗德的等次永遠為祭司。」再过一千年,新約的希伯來書7:14这样解释:雖然耶穌不是利未 的後裔,但是因為耶穌是彌賽亞,結果按照詩篇110:4,耶穌還是一位祭司。 (耶穌叫祭司因為他奉獻自己為獻祭)。 (參考希伯來書4:14到8:1)

换回祭. Sacrifice of Atonement. 在旧约时代,以色列人的圣殿里有一个盒子,叫「约柜」(因为里面有十条诫命)。约柜上面有一个盖子,叫「施恩座」。以色列人犯罪的时候,神命令祭司宰动物当赎罪的献祭。在利未记16:15-16 神说以色列人的祭司「要宰那為百姓做贖罪祭的公山羊,把羊的血。。。彈在施恩座的上面和前面,。。。 16 他因以色列人諸般的汙穢、過犯,就是他們一切的罪愆,當這樣在聖所行贖罪之禮」。这个献祭在中文叫「换回祭」。耶稣是神的羔羊,在十字架上当我们赎罪的献祭。圣经新约的作者也用「换回祭」描述耶稣的牺牲。约翰一书2:1-2说「若有人犯罪,在父那裡我們有一位中保,就是。。。耶穌基督。 他為我們的罪做了挽回祭」。意思是「因为耶稣流血,我们的罪得赦免」

基督 Christ 。基督是耶稣的称号。在旧约,神诺言会差派一位救主。诗篇2:2使用「受膏者」代表那位救主。 (那时候,利用膏人的头上代表那个人被设立为王)。 「受膏者」希伯来话的声音是「弥赛亚」。约翰福音1:41说「弥赛亚翻出来就是基督」。 (就是,翻译到希腊文)。你程耶稣为基督乃是承认耶稣是你的王,你的主。

教会Church. 教会在原文希腊文有「叫在一起」的意思,在希腊文化平常代表「来一起聚会的人」,但是在新约圣经平常代表「本地信耶稣的人」。教会是神在本地的羊泉。羊全需要牧羊人,所以教会的领袖叫牧师。总结:本地教会是一批人,互相支持,被牧师关怀,最少一个礼拜一次聚会,一起领圣餐。聚会的时候也可以 互相认罪,为世界的人祷告,抱着感谢的心赞美神,分享神的话语。保罗比喻本教会为身体,在以弗所书4:15-16劝本地信徒「用爱心说诚实话,凡事长进,连于元首基督。全身都靠他联络得合式,百节各按各职,照着各体的功用彼此相助,便叫身体渐渐增长,在爱中建立自己。」

圣经有时候也用「教会」指示全世界的信徒,也可以叫做普世教会,也叫做大公教会 以及基督总教。圣经也叫全世界的信徒为耶稣的身体,意思是耶稣使用我们代表他,并传扬他的爱。

道. The Way.「道」在圣经有时候描述行为方式,例如说,诗篇119:3说:「这人不做非议的事,但遵行祂的道(英文way)。在约翰福音14:6「道」代表「亲近神的途径」:耶 道 说 「我 就 是 道 路 (英文way)、 真 理 、 生 命 ; 若 不 借 着 我 , 没有 人 能 到 父 那 去 」。信耶稣的人在使徒行转叫「跟随道的人」(The Way)。在希伯来书4:12,「道」代表神的教导和话语:「神的道(希腊文Logos)是活泼的, 是有功效的, 比一切两刃的剑更快」。最奇妙的是,在新约圣经三高地方, 「道」代表耶稣。约翰福音1:1说「太初有道(希腊文Logos), 道与神同在, 道就是神。 这道太初与神同在」。第3节说「万物是借着他造的」。然后第14节说「 道成了肉身, 住在我们中间」。所以耶稣是神,加上人的身体。启示录第19章告诉我们耶稣也是宇宙的王:在第11节,作者约翰写「 我观看, 见天开了。有一匹白马, 骑在马上的称为诚信真实」;第13节说: 「他穿着溅了血的衣服; 他的名称为神之道」(Logos)。第16节说:「在他衣服和大腿上有名写着说: 万王之王, 万主之主。」


福音 gospel。在圣经里,福音代表一个特定的好消息,就是哥林多前书15章2-4节说的:我们「必因这福音得救:… 第一, 基督为我们的罪死了,而且埋葬了; 又照圣经所说, 第三天复活了」。结果「传福音 」的意思就是:描述耶稣的本质是什么,和祂为我们在十字架上所成就的使命是什么。保罗在罗马书第1章16节写了:「我 不 以 福 音 为 耻 ; 这 福 音 本 是 神 的 大 能 , 要 救 一 切 相 信 的 人。 」

罪Sin. 在圣经里,「罪」代表违背神,无论在心里上,口语上,或行动上。罗马书3:23 说「世人都犯了罪」。约翰一书3:4说「違背律法就是罪」。犯罪有後果:以賽亞書 59:2说「你們的罪孽使你們與神隔絕」。罗马书6:23说「罪的工價乃是死,唯有神的恩賜,在我們的主基督耶穌裡乃是永生。」所以约翰一书1:9應許「我們若認自己的罪,神是信實的,是公義的,必要赦免我們的罪,洗淨我們一切的不義。」第2张1-2月再继续说「若有人犯罪,在父那裡我們有一位中保,就是那義者耶穌基督。 他為我們的罪做了挽回祭,不是單為我們的罪,也是為普天下人的罪。」

「罪」这个观念在希伯来文包括1)你做神明示不应该做的;2)你不做神命令你应该做的;3)悖逆神;4)做邪恶。犯罪的後果包括罪恶感和羞耻感。圣经在某些地方列出好几个罪:可参考出埃及记第20章(十条诫命),(还有加拉太书5:19-21,罗马书3:9-18. )


虽然我们因信称义,得救不凭着行为,但是我们心里面有「不想犯罪」的感觉,因为神赐给我们「新的生命」.歌羅西書 3:8-10 说但現在你們要棄絕這一切的事,以及惱恨、憤怒、惡毒[a]、毀謗並口中汙穢的言語。 不要彼此說謊,因你們已經脫去舊人和舊人的行為, 10 穿上了新人;這新人在知識上漸漸更新,正如造他主的形象。求赦免之后,我们求神坚强我们的新生命,继续改变我们。

撒旦Satan , 魔鬼devil, 别 西 卜Beelzebub or Beelzebul. 这些名字都代表同样一位超自然悖逆神的天使。撒旦有抵抗者的意思。魔鬼有欺骗者的意思。别 西 卜在迦南地文化指示鬼王。圣经也叫他为诱惑者,谎话的父,罪恶者。他不是永远存在的—他是神所创造的天使之一,但是被创造之后,他悖逆神,带领其他的天使跟他一起拒绝神,当神的敌人。彼得前书5:8警告「要谨守、警醒,因为你们的仇敌魔鬼如同吼叫的狮子,遍地游行,寻找可吞吃的人。」意思是撒旦想诱惑我们离开神。启示录20:10说在末日的时候「那迷惑他们的魔鬼被扔在硫磺的火湖里。。。必昼夜受痛苦,直到永永远远。」

默示 inspiration. 提摩太后书3章16节说「圣经都是神所默示的」。原文希腊文说「圣经都是神所呼吸的。」结果神是圣经的来源。彼得后书2章21节解释「因为预言从来没有出于人意的, 乃是人被圣灵感动, 说出神的话来。」旧约先知们时常说「主如此说」,然后记录神所告诉他们的话。希伯来书1章1-2节说:“神既在古时借着众先知多次多方的晓谕列祖,就在这末世借着他儿子晓谕我们。” 约翰福音1章18节说”从来没有人看见神, 只有在父怀里的独生子将他表明出来。」因新约圣经记录耶稣的生平,也是神所给我们的启示。圣经也记录神启示自己其他的方法。祂使用行动指示祂的大能:例如,打开红海,医治人物,使耶稣从死里复活。神也赐给人想像和梦想,这些在圣经也被记录。结果圣经对信徒来说是有权利的。若一个人说「神刚刚对我讲话」,我门查看圣经确定他人所说的话是不是配合圣经所说的。如果不是,我们就知道他人的话不是从神而来的。因为我们信耶稣,神已经使我们跟他合二为一,所以使用无常的办法求神跟我们讲话或求他给我们一种属灵上的感觉有一点危险, 因为我们不知道所领受的经验是不是神而来的。神在申命记18章10-12节警告:「你们中间不可有人使儿女经火, 也不可有占卜的、 观兆的、 用法术的、 行邪术的、 用迷术的、 交鬼的、 行巫术的、 过阴的。 凡行这些事的都为耶和华所憎恶。」我们承认「圣经都是神所呼吸的」也提醒我们,读经的时候,神赐给我们所需要的属灵的力量。

参考资料:Reference material

使徒信经:The Apostles Creed


尼 西亚信经:The Nicene Creed



Logos 基本的定义是「所说的话」(英文word)。在耶稣之前几十年,学者已经使用logos描述超自然的神明在世界所有的影响和力量,但是只有圣灵在约翰福音启示「Logos称为人,叫耶稣」 的观念。希腊哲学家使用Logos这个字代表他们认为应该有的超自然神明和人累的中报,但是圣经更清楚启示那个中报就是耶稣。提摩太前书2章5节说:「因 为 只 有 一 位 神 , 在 神 和 人 中 间 , 只 有 一 位 中 保 , 乃 是 降 世 为 人 的 基督 耶稣 」。这些哲学家也以为Logos为了最高者的造万物。圣经希伯来书1章2-3节说神借着祂的儿子创造诸世界。一位犹太学者说神接着Logos创造以及支持万物。圣灵在歌罗西书1章16-17节启示:万有是 借 着 耶稣 造的 , 又 是 为 他 造 的 。他 在 万 有 之 先 ; 万 有 也 靠 他 而 立 」。所以用logos代表耶稣很适合的。哲学家也用Logos代表「理智。」犹太学者认为这个观念和圣经所说的「智慧」有点相思的。 箴言第8章22-23节有关于智慧说「在耶和华造化的起头, 在太初创造万物之先, 就有了我( 智慧)。从亘古, 从太初, 未有世界以前, 我已被立。因为神的本质永远包括神的智慧,这样些犹太人就比较愿意接受耶稣永远构成神的一部分」。歌 林 多 前 书 1:24说:「基 督 总 为 神 的 能 力 , 神 的 智 慧 」。圣灵感动约翰用Logos描述耶稣就蛮有意义。 】

    到繁体字目录。      到英中圣经简介.      到读马可福音



人子.  Son of Man. 在四個福音裡,耶穌平常稱自己為人子,為了要表示祂是500年前但以理在異象所看到的一位超自然的人(但以理書 7:13)。異象裡的“人子”駕著天雲來,他的國度是永遠的。耶穌被審判的時候引用此經文對大祭司說“後來你們要看見人子坐在那全能者的右邊,駕著天上的雲降臨”(太26:64)。在末日祂人子會審判人類(太25:32)。他跟神一樣有贖罪的權柄 (馬可福音2:10),因此他跟神平等的,也就是神。


天堂。Heaven. 這個詞有時候代表神所在的地方,也有時候代表我們過世後要住的地方。
(-)在主禱文耶穌稱神為“我們在天上的父。”所以我們說“神在天上”是可以的,但是意思有點深刻的。所羅門王對神說“天和天上的天尚且不足你居住的”(列王紀上8:27)。詩篇139篇說我們不能夠脫離神,因為“我若升到天上,你在那裡,我若在陰間下塌,你也在那裡。”(詩篇139:8)。還有,“耶和華說:我豈不充滿天地嗎?”(耶利米書23:24)。到處都有神,一直到“我們若彼此相愛,神就住在我們裡面。”(約翰一書4:12)。為了體會“神在天上”的意思,可以考慮使用數學“維空間” 的觀念嗎?神離我們很近,但是我們的“五種感官”摸不到他。他則有他的辦法能夠通知到我們(參考此文章裡的“啟示。”)


好多語言,包括聖經的原文,使用“天”代表兩個不一樣的觀念。第 一個是我們看得見的,有云彩和星星的天,例如詩篇所說的“諸天述說神的榮耀”(詩篇19:1)。第二個是超自然的,不能感覺到的天,例如耶穌所說的“天是神的座位”(太5:34)。



(b) 末日的那一天,聖經鼓勵我們說“我們就要和主永遠同在”(帖撒羅尼前書4:17)。耶穌會對信徒說“來承受那創世以來為你們所預備的國(太25:34),就是耶穌為我們預備的地方(約14:2)。彼得告訴我們看得見的天和地會被毀滅,然後神會造“新天新地”(彼得後書3:10-13)。神會“擦去一切的眼淚,不再有死亡,也不再有悲哀,痛苦“(啟示錄21: 1-4)。信徒說“我要上天堂”的意思是“我要得到復活的神體永遠主在神創造的天和地。 ”

天國。Kingdom of Heaven. 在馬太福音4:17,耶穌說“天國近了。”在馬可福音1:15,耶穌說“ 神的國近了”。這兩句的意思是一樣的。馬可用“神的國”因為他的讀者是非猶太人,要他們了解耶穌的意思。馬太的讀者是猶太人。猶太人有習慣不要說出神的名字,所以他們用“天”代替“神。”天國就是神的國

耶穌所提到的國度就是神應許大衛王的國度,說:“你的家和你的國必在我的面前建立。你的國位也必堅定,直到永遠”(撒母耳記下7: 16)。不幸的,大衛王朝在地上的國度於西元前586被毀滅了。猶太人相信神向大衛的應許,所以他們期待神在祂所定的時間會派一位君王。他們稱這位將來要出現的君王為“彌賽亞。”



地獄。Hell.這個詞的意思可以分:(1) 審判前的情況。 (2)審判後的情況。

(1)舊約使用希伯來文的sheol指出死人去的地方。住此地方明顯是暫時的,因詩篇說“因你必不將我的靈魂撇在陰間(sheol) ”(詩篇16:10)。新約引用這經文使用希臘文的hades翻譯sheol,再加上說此經文預言耶穌的複活(使徒信經2:22-32)。因為耶穌復活,信徒也會復活(哥林多前書15:20)。



犯罪的天使被丟在tartarus,翻譯為地獄。 (彼得後書2:4)

希臘文的Gehenna平常翻譯為地獄:“不叫全神下入地獄”(太5:29)也叫“地獄的刑罰(太23:33)。Gehenna的來源於希伯來文的ge Hinnom,一個在耶路撒冷南邊的山谷,在舊約時代迦南地人在此地方燒掉孩子當縣級。過了時間,那恐怖的意思接過來代表末日後的審判地方。



伊甸园, 看樂園。


使徒. Apostle. 在聖經裡,使徒代表一位被差遣出去傳揚耶穌信息的人。 例如,保羅在使徒行傳13章2節被一個教會派出去,因此他稱為使徒保羅。 耶穌在約翰福音20章21節向他的門徒說「父怎樣差遣了我,我也照樣差遣你們」。 因此耶穌12門徒也稱為使徒。

門徒。Disciple, to disciple. 耶穌有十二個門徒,但是今天每一個跟隨耶穌的人可以称為門徒。在太28:19耶穌命令我們“使萬民作他的門徒。”幫別人作門徒有三個階段:做朋友,傳揚耶穌,培養到完全的地步(希伯來書6:1)。在這裡“完全”有“成熟”的意思,想種子變成樹。 (“完全”的原文希臘文的意思就是telos,有“達到目標”的意思)。

培養也有幾些階段。 (1) 承認耶穌為主與受洗的時候,要強調的是確定信仰的基礎(靠神的應許而不靠情感),和明白信徒在主裡面的地位。 (2)在地一個月內,要(a)了解聖經的組織辦法和大概的內容,(b)聖經專門子,(c)開始日日讀經和禱告的習慣,(d)告訴親人你成為基督徒的事情。 (3)接下來要體會神學基本觀念:(a)人類學:神按著他的形象造人,但是人違背神。(b)神型學:創造萬物的神是三位一體的神:天父,兒子主耶穌基督,聖靈。可參考使徒信經。(c)拯救學:因神愛世人,他差遣耶穌犧牲生命贖罪。信而受洗的人必然得救。 (d)成聖學:拯救我們之後,聖靈施新生命遞給我們,改變我們的思想與動作。我們的部分是日日悔改,求神改變我們。 (e)教會學:信耶穌的人構成全世界上的團體,來一起崇拜與吃聖餐,彼此支持。(f)末日學:包括我們個人生命的結束與上天堂,和全世界被審判的那一天。 (4)高級研究:參考此網上的神學課程

耶和華. The name of God. 耶和華是神的名子。 在出埃及記3章14節,摩西問神祂叫什麼名字。 神回答說:「我是自有永有的」。這句話在希伯來語有「耶和華」的聲音,跟希伯來語的「是」有關係,也可以翻譯為「我是存在的來源」。 在15節神繼續說:「耶和華是我的名字」。 過了幾百年,猶太人停止說出「耶和華」,為了要避免違背十誡裡的「不可妄稱耶和華你的神的名」。 所以猶太人讀聖經的時候,每一次遇見「耶和華」的時候,要代替念「主」。 後來舊約翻譯到希臘文的時候,翻譯者每一次遇見「 耶和華」就會寫下「主」。 英文聖經使用這個習慣,用「主」代替「耶和華」,但是中文翻譯保留原文「耶和華」的名稱。 新約聖經因為原文是希臘文,繼續用「主」代表神,所以在新約「耶和華」這個名稱不見了。

耶穌。Jesus.  祂是人類的救主,生活在公元後的第一個世紀,被钉在十字架死了,贖人類的罪, 「因從死裡復活,以大能显明是神的兒子」(羅1:4 )。 耶穌是三位一體」父,子,圣靈裡的「子,」所以稱為「神的兒子。 (但是耶穌跟父和圣靈是平等的,永遠存在的)。 「子」代表他有兒子的地位,不代表他是從父出生的。在約翰福音10:30耶穌說「我與父原為一。」在約8:58耶穌使用舊約聖經的「耶和華(自有永有)」的意思說:「 還沒有亞伯拉罕就有了我。」(原文的希臘文 說「還沒有亞伯拉罕,我就是。」耶穌這個名字也有意義。「耶穌」的「穌」在希伯來文有「拯救」的意思。「耶」是耶和華的「耶」,代表耶稣是那为自有永有的一部分。這樣耶穌名字意思就是「神拯救。 」 我們就能夠了解馬太福音1章20-23節:一位天使向約瑟說「大衛的子孫約瑟, 不要怕! 只管娶過你的妻子馬利亞來, 因他所懷的孕是從聖靈 來的。 他要生一個兒子, 你要給他起名叫耶穌, 因他要將自己的百姓從罪惡裡救出來。 這一切的事成就是要應驗主藉先知所說的話,說: 必有童女懷孕生子; 人要稱他的名為以馬內利。( 以馬內利翻出來就是神與我們同在) 」。在下面参考「基督」。


神。God. 聖經鼓勵我們依靠創造萬物的神,在中文也可翻譯為「上帝」和「天主」。 在出埃及記3章14節,摩西問神祂叫什麼名字。 神回答說:「我是自有永有的」。 這句話在希伯來文有「耶和華」的聲音。 在聖經也平常叫神為「主」。 聖經說只有一個真神,構成天父,兒子,聖靈。 神永遠存在,但是2000年前兒子成為人,取名字叫耶穌,稱號是基督(希伯來文「彌賽亞」。耶穌被釘在十字架上,犧牲生命贖我們的罪,第三日復活了。他升了天,坐在聖父的右邊,同時也與我們同在。他還要光榮地降臨,審判生者死者,他的神國,萬世無疆。約翰一書4:8-10說「神就是愛。神差 祂獨生子到世間來,使我們藉著祂得生,神愛我們的心在此就顯明了。不是我們愛神,乃是神愛我們,差祂的兒子為我們的罪做了挽回祭,這 就是愛了」。聖靈吸引人相信,也天天給我們力量面對困難。參考此資料的尼西亞信經,保惠師,耶穌,耶和華。

信心。Faith, belief. 原文希腊文的意思是“被确定“。在社会上,我们认识一个人,看他是可靠的,就发现到我们信任他。相信耶稣有点相似的。有人給我们介绍耶稣,我们认识到他的本质和他的动作,就发现我们依赖他。圣经加上另外一个舱面,就是生灵在我们心里面的工作:哥林多前书第12章第3节说”若不是被圣灵感动的,也没有能说‘耶稣是主’的。“我们信耶稣的人要感谢圣灵感动我们。以弗所书2章8-9节说” 你 们 得 救 是 本 乎 恩 ,也 因 着 信 ; 这 并 不 是 出 於 自 己 , 乃 是 神 所 赐 的 ;也 不 是 出 於 行 为 , 免 得 有 人 自 夸 。马可福音16章16节说“信 而 受 洗 的 , 必 然 得 救“。神欢迎我们 已经得救的人在困难中来以来祂宝贵的应许。

約 Covenant。 1)跟挪亞。 神在創世紀9:11說「我與你們立約:凡有血肉的,不再被洪水滅絕,也不再有洪水毀壞地了。」2)跟亞伯拉。 在創17:7-8神向亞伯拉罕說「我要與你並你世世代代的後裔堅立我的約,做永遠的約,是要做你和你後裔的神。我要將你現在寄居 的地,就是迦南全地,賜給你和你的後裔永遠為業,我也必做他們的神。」第一個觀念,做你的神,還在與我們有效,因為保羅在加拉 太書3:14向我們非基督徒說「 你們既屬乎基督,就是亞伯拉罕的後裔,是照著應許承受產業的了。」所謂的產業就是「神會做我們的神。」在末日,同樣 的觀念還在出現。 啟示錄21:1-3記錄著者約翰在異鄉所經驗的:「 我又看見一個新天新地…我聽見有大聲音從寶座出來說:「看哪,神的帳幕在人間!祂要與人同 住,他們要做祂的子民,神要親自與他們同在,做他們的神。」

有關神跟亞伯拉罕講的最後一句,賜給迦南全地為業,那個諾言在所羅門王的時代應驗了:以色列國土包括全迦南地。 但是以後,因為大部分的以色列人不忠心的跟隨主,土地的範圍越來越小,一直到公元前586年被敵人戰勝,以色列國度結束。 在那時候,耶利米先知出現。 在耶利米書31:31-33 他寫: 耶和華說:「日子將到,我要與以色列家和猶大家另立新約。32 不像我拉著他們祖宗的手領他們出埃及地的時候 ,與他們所立的約,我雖做他們的丈夫,他們卻背了我的約。」這是耶和華說的。 耶和華說:「那些日子以後,我與以色列家所立的約乃是這樣:我要將我的律法放在他們裡面,寫在他們心上;我要做他們的神,他們要做我的 子民。」

注意:新約和舊約有相同的地方,就是神會做信徒的神。 在路加福音22:30耶穌設立聖餐的時候,他「飯後也照樣拿起杯來,說:「這杯是用我血所立的新約,是為你們流出來的。」希伯來 書9:15解釋,耶穌「做了新約的中保,既然受死贖了人在前約之時所犯的罪過,便叫蒙召之人得著所應許永遠的產業」。 我們現在活在新約時代;耶利米的預言在我們身上應驗,因歌羅西書3:9-10說「不要彼此說謊,因你們已經脫去舊人和舊人的行為, 10 穿上了新人 ;這新人在知識上漸漸更新,正如造他主的形象。」

保惠師. Comforter 聖靈 Holy Spirit. 這個字的原文希臘文有「來到旁邊幫忙」的意思。 耶穌在約翰福音14:16-17說「「我求父,父就另外賜給你們一位保惠師,叫他永遠與你們同在, 就是真理的聖靈」。 耶穌說「另外」表示祂自己會幫助我們,聖靈也會。 聖靈是三位一體神的第三位。 聖靈吸引人相信耶穌,因為哥林多前書說「若不是被聖靈感動的,也沒有能說「耶穌是主」的」。 聖靈也給信徒力量來成就神的旨意。 保羅在以弗所書求神「藉著祂的靈,叫你們心裡的力量剛強起來」。 聖靈賜給人高品質行為,加拉太書5:22-3說「 聖靈所結的果子,就是仁愛、喜樂、和平、忍耐、恩慈、良善、信實, 溫柔、節制」。 聖靈交給人能利來服侍人,因哥林多前書12:7說「7 聖靈顯在各人身上,是叫人得益處 」。 聖靈感動那些寫下聖經的人,因彼得後書有關聖經的著者說「預言從來沒有出於人意的,乃是人被聖靈感動,說出神的話來」。

神的兒子 Son of God. 約翰福音3:16說「神愛世人,甚至將祂的獨生子賜給他們」。 那位獨生子就是耶穌。 那句「獨生子」最早在詩篇2:7出現。 在那裡神向彌賽亞說「你是我的兒子,我今日生你。」所以你稱耶穌為神的兒子,就算是承認他是你的彌賽亞(就是那位受膏者的,宇宙 的君王,世界的救主)。 不止如此,耶穌也是三位一體永遠存在神的第二位。 耶穌復活之後,他的門徒多馬崇拜他,說「我的主!我的神!」雖然舊約很清楚在申命記6:4說「耶和華我們神是獨一的主」,耶穌不否認 多馬,而接受他的崇拜,說:「你因看見了我才信,那沒有看見就信的有福了!」啟示錄第5章稱耶穌羔羊,說他配得領受崇拜「因為你曾被 殺,用自己的血從各族、各方、各民、各國中買了人來,叫他們歸於神」。 。 。 「曾經被殺的羔羊是配得權柄、豐富、智慧、能力、尊貴、榮耀、頌讚的!」。 。 。 「但願頌讚、尊貴、榮耀、權勢都歸給坐寶座的和羔羊,直到永永遠遠!在馬太福音28:18耶穌叫自己為三位一體神裡面,說:「天上地下所有的權柄都賜 給我了。 所以你們要去,使萬民做我的門徒,奉父、子、聖靈的名給他們施洗,凡我所吩咐你們的,都教訓他們遵守。我就常與你們同在,直到 世界的末了。」

律法. Law. 這個字用在以下六個不一樣的情況:

1). 代表聖經首先五本書,(也叫摩西的書)。 在路加福音24:44耶穌對他的門徒說:「這就是我從前與你們同在之時所告訴你們的話說:摩西的律法、先知的書和詩篇上所記的,凡指著 我的話都必須應驗。(摩西的律法+先知的書+詩篇等書=舊約聖經)

2). 代表神一切記錄在舊約的教導,包括命令,故事,和諾言。 在約翰福音 12:34 猶太人說「我們聽見律法上有話說基督是永存的」。

3). 神的命令,包括意識上的程序。 路加福音 1:39說 「約瑟和馬利亞照主的律法辦完了一切的事」。

4). 對比律法和恩典。 加拉太書2:16.說「既知道人稱義不是因行律法,乃是因信耶穌基督,連我們也信了基督耶穌,使我們因信基督稱義,不因行律法 ;因為凡有血氣的,沒有一人因行律法稱義。(行善不能幫我們得救,但是信耶穌得救之後,我們被激勵做善事。以弗所書2:10說我們「在基督耶穌裡造成 的,為要叫我們行善,就是神所預備叫我們行的」。)

5)幫我們明白要承認什麼罪。 在羅馬書 7:7保羅說 「非因律法,我就不知何為罪。非律法說「不可起貪心」,我就不知何為貪心。 」

6)帶領我們的良心。 羅馬書2:15 這「律法的功用刻在他們心裡」。


崇拜和讚美。 Worship and Praise. 崇拜在原文有「彎曲膝蓋並屈服」的意思。 啟示錄4:10-11描述天上的「長老就俯伏在坐寶座的面前,敬拜那活到永永遠遠的,又把他們的冠冕放在寶座前,說:我們的主,我們的神, 你是配得榮耀、尊貴、權柄的」。 崇拜不只是聚會的事:我們心裡時要抱著這個態度,例保羅在羅馬書12:1-2說我們「將身體獻上,當做活祭,是聖潔的,是神所喜悅的,你們如此 侍奉乃是理所當然的。古典住中东的人有「彎曲膝蓋」代表他们心里面的「屈服」的态度。最重要的不是你外面的行动,而是你心里面的态度。彼得前书3:15说「只要心裡尊主基督為聖。」

在一般的宗教裡,人崇拜的目的是希望對象會回應,關懷,答應他們所要求的。 聖經剛好相反。 聖經的神已經關懷我們,愛我們,已經差派耶穌贖罪,讓我們能跟神有和睦的關係,已經給我們永恆的生命。 因此崇拜的目的是要感謝神,樂意順服祂,服事祂。

讚美的意思是宣揚神。你說「讚美神」或說「神,我們讚美你」都算是。 加细节,例傳揚神的本質,或者傳揚神所做的事,也可以。這兩個陳述在詩篇150:2都出現:「 要因他大能的作為讚美他,按著他極美的大德讚美他」. 哈利路亞是希伯來话:「哈利」有「讚美」的意思;「路」有「你們」的意思,「亞」代表耶和華。 所以哈利路亞的意思是「你們來讚美耶和華。」

换回祭 (atoning sacrifice). 在旧约时代,以色列人的圣殿里有一个盒子,叫「约柜」(因为里面有十条诫命)。约柜上面有一个盖子,叫「施恩座」。以色列人犯罪的时候,神命令祭司宰动物当赎罪的献祭。在利未记16:15-16 神说以色列人的祭司「要宰那為百姓做贖罪祭的公山羊,把羊的血。。。彈在施恩座的上面和前面,。。。他因以色列人諸般的汙穢、過犯,就是他們一切的罪愆,當這樣在聖所行贖罪之禮」。这个献祭在中文叫「换回祭」。耶稣是神的羔羊,在十字架上当我们赎罪的献祭。圣经新约的作者也用「换回祭」描述耶稣的牺牲。约翰一书2:1-2说「若有人犯罪,在父那裡我們有一位中保,就是。。。耶穌基督。 他為我們的罪做了挽回祭」。意思是「因为耶稣流血,我们的罪得赦免」。

鬼。evil spirit, demon. 在聖經裡,鬼不代表過世的人,而代表撒旦魔鬼的使者。 耶穌在新約裡尋常甘鬼。 若鬼來打擾我們,我們靠著耶穌的大能叫他離開我們。

悔改。Repent.  原文希臘文的意思是「改變你的思想」。 我們原來覺得可以做到行動,改變到這件事情是違背神旨意的;我要放棄我的想法,接受神的想法, 就是悔改。 我們改變想法,就求神赦免我們,求神改進我們的行為。 我們的行為不一定馬上改變,所以我們每一次做錯就重新悔改,道歉,求赦免,求神的力量改變行為。這就是基督徒的生活方式。


基督 Christ 。 基督是耶穌的稱號。 在舊約,神諾言會差派一位救主。 詩篇2:2使用「受膏者」代表那位救主。 (那時候,利用膏人的頭上代表那個人被設立為王)。 「受膏者」希伯來話的聲音是「彌賽亞」。 約翰福音1:41說「彌賽亞翻出來就是基督」。 (就是,翻譯到希臘文)。 你程耶穌為基督乃是承認耶穌是你的王,你的主。

道. The Way.「道」在聖經有時候描述行為方式,例如說,詩篇119:3說:「這人不做不議的事,但遵行祂的道(英文way)。 在約翰福音14:6「道」代表「親近神的途徑」:耶 道 說 「我 就 是 道 路 (英文way)、 真 理 、 生 命 ; 若 不 藉 著 我 , 沒有 人 能 到 父 那 去 」。 信耶穌的人在使徒行转叫「跟隨道的人」(The Way)。 在希伯來書4:12,「道」代表神的教導和話語:「神的道(希臘文Logos)是活潑的, 是有功效的, 比一切兩刃的劍更快」。最奇妙的是,在新约圣经三高地方, 「道」代表耶穌。 約翰福音1:1說「太初有道(希臘文Logos), 道與神同在, 道就是神。這道太初與神同在」。第3節說「萬物是藉著他造的」。 然後第14節說「 道成了肉身, 住在我們中間」。 所以耶穌是神,加上人的身体。 啟示錄第19章告訴我們耶稣也是宇宙的王:在第11節,作者約翰寫「 我觀看, 見天開了。有一匹白馬, 騎在馬上的稱為誠信真實」;第13節说: 「他穿著濺 了血的衣服; 他的名稱為神之道」(Logos)。第16節说:「在他衣服和大腿上有名寫著說: 萬王之王, 萬主之主。」

麥基洗德. Melchizedek. 麥基洗德是人物,生活在亞伯拉罕的時代。創世紀14:·18說麥基洗德「是至高神的祭司」。 他则不是猶太教的祭司,因為犹太教的祭司還沒出現,但亞伯拉罕認出他是真正的祭司。(犹太教的祭司是亞伯拉罕子孫中利未族的後裔)。 过了一千年,神在詩篇110:4有关彌賽亞說他「是照著麥基洗德的等次永遠為祭司。」再过一千年,新約的希伯來書7:14这样解释:雖然耶穌不是利未 的後裔,但是因為耶穌是彌賽亞,結果按照詩篇110:4,耶穌還是一位祭司。 (耶穌叫祭司因為他奉獻自己為獻祭)。 (參考希伯來書4:14到8:1)

教會Church. 教會在原文希臘文有「叫在一起」的意思,在希臘文化平常代表「來一起聚會的人」,但是在新約聖經平常代表「本地信耶穌的人」。教會是神在本地的羊 泉。 羊全需要牧羊人,所以教會的領袖叫牧師。 總結:本地教會是一批人,互相支持,被牧師關懷,最少一個禮拜一次聚會,一起領聖餐。 聚會的時候也可以 互相認罪,為世界的人禱告,抱著感謝的心讚美神,分享神的話語。 保羅比喻本教會為身體,在以弗所書4:15-16勸本地信徒「用愛心說誠實話,凡事長進,連於元首基督。全身都靠他聯絡得合式,百節各按各職, 照著各體的功用彼此相助,便叫身體漸漸增長,在愛中建立自己。」

聖經有時候也用「教會」指示全世界的信徒,也可以叫做普世教會,也叫做大公教會 以及基督總教。 聖經也叫全世界的信徒為耶穌的身體,意思是耶穌使用我們代表他,並傳揚他的愛。


Sin. 在聖經裡,「罪」代表違背神,無論在心裡上,口語上,或行動上。 羅馬書3:23 說「世人都犯了罪」。 約翰一書3:4說「違背律法就是罪」。 犯罪有後果:以賽亞書 59:2說「你們的罪孽使你們與神隔絕」。 羅馬書6:23說「罪的工價就是死,唯有神的恩賜,在我們的主基督耶穌裡乃是永生。」所以約翰一書1:9應許「我們若認自己的罪,神 是信實的,是公義的,必要赦免我們的罪,洗淨我們一切的不義。」第2張1-2月再繼續說「若有人犯罪,在父那裡我們有一位中保,就是那義者 耶穌基督。2 他為我們的罪做了挽回祭,不是單為我們的罪,也是為普天下人的罪。」
「罪」這個觀念在希伯來文包括1)你做神明示不應該做的;2)你不做神命令你應該做的;3)悖逆神;4)做邪惡。 犯罪的後果包括罪惡感和羞恥感。 聖經在某些地方列出好幾個罪:可參考出埃及記第20章(十誡),(還有加拉太書5:19-21,羅馬書3:9-18. )

得罪人同時也是得罪神。 大衛王上海一個人,但是他認罪的時候,他在詩篇51:4說「我向你犯罪,唯獨得罪了你,在你眼前行了這惡。」我們一感覺到罪惡感的感覺, 最好立刻認罪,求赦罪。 大衛王在詩篇32:5講他的經驗:「我向你陳明我的罪,不隱瞞我的惡。我說「我要向耶和華承認我的過犯」,你就赦免我的罪。 」

雖然我們因信稱義,得救不憑著行為,但是我們心裡有「不想犯罪」的感覺,因為神賜給我們「新的生命」.歌羅西書3:8-10 說「但現在你們要棄 絕這一切的事,以及惱恨、憤怒、惡毒 [a]、誹謗並口中污穢的言語。9 不要彼此說謊,因你們已經脫去舊人和舊人的行為,10 穿上了新人;這新人在 知識上漸漸更新,正如造他主的形象。」求赦免之後,我們求神堅強我們的新生命,繼續改變我們。

福音 gospel 在聖經裡,福音代表一個特定的好消息,就是哥林多前書15章2-4節說的:我們「必因這福音得救:… 第一, 基督為我們的罪死了,而且埋葬了; 又照聖經所說, 第三天復活了」。结果「傳福音 」的意思就是:描述耶穌的本質是什么,和祂為我們在十字架上所成就的使命是什么。保羅在羅馬書第1章16節寫了:「我 不 以 福 音 為 恥 ; 這 福 音 本 是 神 的 大 能 , 要 救 一 切 相 信 的 人。 」

聖潔. Holy. 成聖. Sanctify. 聖潔在原文希伯來文有「分開的」意思,就是「從普通的,不完美,不純潔的東西分開到神」。 在以賽亞書6:3天使讚美神,說神是「聖哉」,因為神是最完美,千萬沒有缺乏的。 舊約時代的崇拜神的建築物跟普通的建築物分開給神,所以叫「聖殿」。 在出埃及記19:6神稱祂的子民為「聖潔的國民」。 新約也是這樣。 約翰在啟示錄4:8記錄天使向神唱「聖哉」。 歌羅西書2:21叫我們信耶穌的人「與祂自己和好,都成了聖潔」。 所以保羅能夠稱我們信耶穌的人為「聖徒」。 彼得前書2:9說我們跟舊約的子民也是「聖潔的國度」。 在神的眼中我們是聖潔,但是我們在行為上不一定看起來聖潔。 所以保羅在帖撒羅尼迦前書說神會幫助我們改進行為,說:「神的旨意就是要你們成為聖潔,遠避淫行,」;接下來第7節說「神召我們本來不是要我們 沾染汙穢,乃是要我們成為聖潔」。 這個慢慢改進行為的過程叫做「成聖,英文sanctify」。 成聖不是得救的條件,而是得救的效果。 神已經為了耶穌的寶血接受了我們;神會幫助祂的國民改進行為。


稱義 (declared righteous, justify).羅馬書3:10說「沒有義人,連一個也沒有。」信耶穌之後,我還是不公義。 但因為耶穌的緣故,神算我為義人。 所以我們不說「神改變我成為義」而是說「神稱呼我為義人。」我虽然不配從神领受任何東西,但是因為我在神的眼中稱義,我就會得着永恆的生命, 像羅馬書3:24說,我「如今卻蒙神的恩典,因基督耶穌的救贖,就白白地稱義。」

榮耀Glory。 1) 在聖經裡,有時候人用「榮耀」讚美神,例如在耶穌誕生的是後,天使讚美神說在至高之處榮耀歸於神」。 2)有時候聖經用榮耀來代表神給我們啟示自己的辦法。 神是靈,是看不見的;超過我們所能領會。 不只如此,神也禁止人看見祂。 在出埃及記第33章,摩西邀請神讓他看見祂的面。 神回答「你不能看見我的面,因為人見我的面不能存活。」所以神用別的辦法表示祂與我們同在。 這類的辦法可以稱為「神的榮耀」。 例如說,在耶穌誕生的時候「有主的使者站在(牧羊人)旁邊,主的榮光四面照著他們,牧羊的人就甚懼怕。」(路加福音2:9)。 牧羊人懼怕,但是沒有死。 另外有幾個例子:詩篇19:1說「諸天述說神的榮耀」。 我們看宇宙,醒悟神比宇宙更大;我們接著看諸星星就醒悟神的偉大,但是不直接的看神。 在耶穌的時代,人看耶穌,可以醒悟神的特質。 約翰福音1:18說「從來沒有人看見神,只有在父懷裡的獨生子(耶穌)將他表明出來。」然後在17章4節耶穌說「我在地上已經榮耀你,你所託付我的 事,我已成全了。」雖然人不能直接的看見神,但是看耶穌被釘在十字架的時間,人就知道「神是愛。」因為耶穌住在信徒裡,耶穌也能夠藉著我們的 行為表示出神的存在和特質。 在馬太福音5:16耶穌說「你們的光也當這樣照在人前,叫他們看見你們的好行為,便將榮耀歸給你們在天上的父。」因為耶穌感動我們,我們跟星星一樣可以 「述說神的榮耀」。


撒旦Satan , 魔鬼devil, 別 西 卜Beelzebub or Beelzebul. 這些名字都代表同樣一位超自然悖逆神的天使。 撒旦有抵抗者的意思。 魔鬼有欺騙者的意思。 別 西 卜在迦南地文化指示鬼王。 聖經也叫他為誘惑者,謊話的父,罪惡者。 他不是永遠存在的—他是神所創造的天使之一,但是被創造之後,他悖逆神,帶領其他的天使跟他一起绝神,當神的敵人。 彼得前書5:8警告「要謹守、警醒,因為你們的仇敵魔鬼如同吼叫的獅子,遍地遊行,尋找可吞吃的人。」意思是撒旦想誘惑我們離開神。 啟示錄20:10說在末日的時候「那迷惑他們的魔鬼被扔在硫磺的火湖里。。。必晝夜受痛苦,直到永永遠遠。」

樂園。Paradise. 這個詞在新約聖經中出現了三次。(1)保羅看見異象的時候,他説他“被提到樂園裏。”(哥林多後書12:4),所以這樂園乃是指一個已經存在的地方。樂園一詞翻譯自希臘文的 paradeisos,(英文paradise). (這個詞是從伊朗文接過來的,意思是“花園”) (2)耶穌在十字架上的時候向跟他在旁邊的犯人說 “今日你要同我在樂園裏了”(路加福音 23:43),所以樂園也是我們一過世後要去的地方。(3)樂園也是信徒永遠與主同在的地方。耶穌說 “得勝的, 我必將神樂園中生命樹的果子賜給他吃”(啓示錄 2:7)。舊約的希臘文譯本使用paradeisos 翻譯伊甸的園。伊甸園後原來有命樹 ,但是因爲人違背了神, 所以人也失掉他們跟神的美好關係,神就不准許那時候的人吃其上的果子。但信耶穌的人跟神的關係復和了,因此死後會到天堂,可以在那裡得著生命樹所給的永恆生命。(謝謝David)


默示 inspiration. 提摩太後書3章16節說「聖經都是神所默示的」。 原文希臘文說「聖經都是神所呼吸的。」結果神是聖經的來源。 彼得後書2章21節解釋「因 為 預 言 從 來 沒 有 出 於 人 意 的 , 乃 是 人 被 聖 靈 感 動, 說 出 神 的話來 。」舊約先知們時常說「主如此說」,然後記錄神所告訴他們的話。希伯來書1章1-2節說:“神既在古時藉著眾先知多次多方的曉諭列祖,就在這末世藉著他兒子曉諭我們。” 約翰福音1章18節說” 從來沒有人看見神, 只有在父懷裡的獨生子將他表明出來。」因新約聖經記錄耶穌的生平,也是神所給我們的啟示。聖經也記錄神啟示自己其他的方法。 祂使用行動指示祂的大能:例如,打開紅海,醫治人物,使耶穌從死裡復活。 神也賜給人想像和夢想,這些在聖經也被記錄。結果聖經對信徒來說是有權利的。若一個人說「神剛剛對我講話」,我門查看聖經確定他人所說的話是不是配合聖經所說的。 如果不是,我們就知道他人的話不是從神而來的。因為我們信耶稣,神已經使我們跟他合二為一,所以使用無常的辦法求神跟我們講話或求他給我們一種屬靈上的感覺有一點危險, 因為我們不知道所領受的經驗是不是神而來的。 神在申命記18章10-12節警告:「你們中間不可有人使兒女經火, 也不可有占卜的、 觀兆的、 用法術的、 行邪術的、 用迷術的、 交鬼的 、 行巫術的、 過陰的。 凡行這些事的都為耶和華所憎惡。」我們承認「聖經都是神所呼吸的」也提醒我們,讀經的時候,神賜給我們所需要的屬靈的力量。


參考資料:Reference Material

使徒信經        The Apostles Creed


尼 西亞信經  The Nicene Creed



Logos 基本的定義是「所說的話」(英文word)。 在耶穌之前幾十年,學者已經使用logos描述超自然的神明在世界所有的影響和力量,但是只有聖靈在约翰福音啟示「Logos稱為人,叫耶稣」 的觀念。希臘哲學家使用Logos这个字代表他們认为应该有的超自然神明和人累的中報,但是聖經更清楚啟示那個中報就是耶穌。 提摩太前書2章5節說:「因 為 只 有 一 位 神 , 在 神 和 人 中 間 , 只 有 一 位 中 保 , 乃 是 降 世 為 人 的 基督 耶稣 」。 這些哲學家也以為Logos為了最高者的造万物。 聖經希伯來書1章2-3節說神藉著祂的兒子創造諸世界。一位猶太學者說神接著Logos創造以及支持萬物。 聖靈在歌羅西書1章16-17節啟示:萬有是 藉 著 耶穌造 的 , 又 是 為 他 造 的 。 他 在 萬 有 之 先 ; 萬 有 也 靠 他 而 立 」。 所以用logos代表耶穌很適合的。哲學家也用Logos代表「理智。」猶太學者認為這個觀念和聖經所說的「智慧」有點相思的。  箴言第8章22-23節有關於智慧說「在耶和華造化的起頭, 在太初創造萬物之先, 就有了我( 智慧)。從亙古, 從太初, 未有世界以前, 我已被立。 因為神的本質永遠包括神的智慧,这样些猶太人就比較願意接受耶穌永遠構成神的一部分」。 歌 林 多 前 書 1:24說:「基 督 總 為 神 的 能 力 , 神 的 智 慧 」。 聖靈感動約翰用Logos描述耶穌就蠻有意義。 】

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