hodegeo

ὁ•δη•γέ•ω

verb — [ho-de-geh-oh]

definition: to assist in reaching a desired destination; lead, guide; to assist someone in acquiring information or knowledge; teach, explain, instruct.

example usage:

πῶς γὰρ ἂν δυναίμην ἐὰν μή τις ὁδηγήσει με; (Acts 8:31)

An Ethiopian eunuch, traveling home on the Gaza road, was confused reading the prophet Isaiah. Directed by the Spirit, Philip ran over to the chariot and asked the eunuch if he understood what he was reading. He answered, “How can I, unless someone guides me?” (Acts 8:31 ESV, NAS), unless someone “explains it to me” (NIV, The Message). Then he invited Philip to come up and sit with him.

Forms of the word hodegeo are also used in passages such as Matthew 15:14 and Luke 6:39 referring to “blind leading the blind.” It is also used in John 16:13 where Jesus promises that “when the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all the truth.”

Until yesterday, I had never heard, or at least paid attention to, someone explaining this word. I’ve lauded exegesis and paid thousands of dollars for almost a decade of training to avoid eisegesis. Interestingly enough, MacArthur, Boice, and Barclay make no comment whatsoever about the use of hodegeo in Acts 8:31 (and I mention them because those are the commentaries on Acts I own). I had to hear about hodegesis from Eugene Peterson (yes, that Eugene Peterson).

The Greek words for “explain” and “guide” share the same verbal root, “to lead,” and have a common orientation in and concern for the text. But the explainer, the exegete, leads the meaning out of the text; the guide, the hodegete, leads you in the way (hodos) of the text. (Working the Angles, 128)

Peterson illustrates the nuance of hodegesis like this:

It is the difference between the shopkeeper who sells maps of the wilderness and the person who goes with you into it, risking the dangers, helping to cook the meals, and sharing the weather. (Ibid.)

Don’t get me wrong. I.♥.exegesis. Let’s give three cheers for exegesis! I’m just surprised that this exegetical, hodegetical bushwhacker of a word hasn’t lead the way more often.

treacle

trea•cle

noun — [tree-kuhl]

definition: lit-British word for “molasses”; the syrup remaining after sugar is crystallized out of cane or beet juice . fig-contrived or unrestrained sentimentality, cloying speech or flattery.

example usage:

Multitudes of children raised on a treacly diet of seeker-sensitive religion have grown up to associate the label evangelical with superficiality.

Phil Johnson, The Neo-Liberal Stealth Offensive

assiduous

as•sid•u•ous

adjective — [uh-sij-oo-uhs]

definition: constant in application or effort; working diligently at a task; showing great care and perseverance.

synonyms: diligent, meticulous, persevering, industrious, attentive

example usage:

I must now say, that, after all my searching and reading, prayer and assiduous meditation have been my only resort, and by far the most useful means of light and assistance. By these have my thoughts been freed from many an entanglement.

John Owen, explaining how he finished his seven-volume commentary on Hebrews, quoted in Piper, Contending for Our All, 107.

proskartereo

προσ•καρ•τε•ρέ•ω

verb — [pros-kar-te-reh-oh]

definition: to stick by or be close at hand; attach oneself to, wait on, be faithful to; to persist in something; to be busy with, be busily engaged in, be devoted to.

example usage:

Τῇ προσευχῇ προσκαρτερεῖτε, γρηγοροῦντες ἐν αὐτῇ ἐν εὐχαριστίᾳ (Colossians 4:2)

“Devote yourselves to prayer.” (Colossians 4:2, NAS, NIV, NRSV) Or the ESV, “continue steadfastly in prayer, being watchful in it with thanksgiving” (“continue earnestly” NKJV).

Paul likewise urges devotion to prayer in Romans 12:12. The disciples of Christ, in the days following Christ’s ascension, were “devoting themselves to prayer” (Acts 1:14). They “devoted themselves to the apostle’s teaching and the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers” (Acts 2:42).

To “devote” oneself means to give oneself to something with such dogged commitment that one becomes known, even identified, by that devotion. A husband devoted to his wife has eyes and time for no other woman. A teacher devoted to his or her students is committed, in and out of the classroom, that the students would learn and flourish. A fan devoted to his favorite college or professional team wears his team colors on game day, loves to talk about his team, and senses the joys of winning and the pain of defeat along with the players.

Christians are called to devote themselves to prayer. To be devoted to prayer means to commit ourselves to prayer in such a way that our lives (not merely our pre-meal rituals) are defined by prayer. Being devoted to prayer means that our eyes are on God and the moments in our days are filled with prayer. Being devoted to prayer means that we make every effort to battle for souls, our own and those of others, asking, knocking, and seeking God’s work. Being devoted to prayer means that we will be marked by an obvious, fanatical, intense, and unwavering practice of prayer.

Devoted to Prayer

fan•tod

noun — [fan-tod]

definition: usually, fantods. a state or attack of uneasiness or unreasonableness, extreme nervousness or restlessness.

synonyms: the willies; the fidgets

example usage:

In my previous post on this, I got a little into the theological weirdness that is pervasive in this Twilight business. This time, I would like to explain why this whole phenomenon gives me the pastoral fantods.

Doug Wilson, Twilight Review #6

ἐγ•κα•κέ•ω

verb — [eng-ka-keh-oh]

definition: to lose one’s motivation in continuing a desirable pattern of conduct or activity, lose enthusiasm; lose heart; be discouraged (of pursuing some goal); tire of, grow weary; give up. Stated positively, it means keep on; continue.

example usage:

Διὰ τοῦτο, ἔχοντες τὴν διακονίαν ταύτην καθὼς ἠλεήθημεν, οὐκ ἐγκακοῦμεν… (2 Corinthians 4:1)

Most modern translations translate the above verse, “we do not lose heart.” Other exceptions are: “we faint not” (KJV, ASV, DRBY), as well as “we never give up” (NLT), and “we’re not about to throw up our hands and walk off the job” (The Message).

Very much a key word in 2 Corinthians 4, bookending the chapter in verse 1 and verse 16.

Other NT passages: Luke 18:1; Galatians 6:9; Ephesians 3:13; 2 Thessalonians 2:13.

flac•cid

adjective — [flak-sid]

definition: (of part of the body) soft and hanging loosely or limply, especially so as to look or feel unpleasant; not firm. figurative: lacking force or effectiveness

history: Latin flaccidus, from flaccus meaning “flabby.”

synonyms: soft, loose, limp, flabby, drooping; or, lackluster, lifeless, uninspiring, vapid.

example usage:

Flaccid church guys will often accept that in the Old Testament God did get angry, but they will say that Jesus was a nice, emotionless, flaccid church guy, just like them, who chose a hollow, fake smile over anger every day.

Mark Driscoll, Death by Love, 127

moun•te•bank

noun — [moun-tuh-bangk]

definition: a person who deceives others, especially in order to trick them out of their money; a person who sells quack medicines, as from a platform in public places, attracting and influencing an audience by tricks, storytelling, etc.

history: Italian montambanco, a contraction from the phrase monta im banco, meaning “one gets up onto the bench” (so as to attract attention to sell things).

synonyms: swindler, charlatan, trickster, snail oil salesman.

Quack refers to any fraudulent practitioner of medicine or law. Mountebank may imply some quackery, but more often it refers to a self-promoting person who resorts to cheap tricks or undignified efforts to win attention.

example usage:

The United States is only a nation, and we are experiencing no temptations except those that are common to man. And there is a way of escape. Stop voting for mountebanks.

Doug Wilson, more Obama nation building

κα•κο•πα•θέ•ω

verb — [ka-ko-pa-theh-oh]

definition: bear hardship patiently; suffer physical pain, trouble, danger, and distress.

example usage:

Σὺ δὲ νῆφε ἐν πᾶσιν, κακοπάθησον, ἔργον ποίησον εὐαγγελιστοῦ, τὴν διακονίαν σου πληροφόρησον. (2 Timothy 4:5)

The imperative is translated: “endure hardship” (ESV, NAS, NIV), “endure afflictions” (NKJV), “endure suffering” (NRSV), “bear evils” (DRBY).

kakapatheo

κα•κο•πα•θε•ω

verb — [ka-ko-pa-theh-oh]

definition: bear hardship patiently; suffer physical pain, trouble, danger, and distress.

example usage:

Σὺ δὲ νῆφε ἐν πᾶσιν, κακοπάθησον, ἔργον ποίησον εὐαγγελιστοῦ, τὴν διακονίαν σου πληροφόρησον. (2 Timothy 4:5)

The imperative is translated: “endure hardship” (ESV, NAS, NIV), “endure afflictions” (NKJV), “endure suffering” (NRSV), “bear evils” (DRBY).