Priesthill (Zion) Methodist

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The flowers are springing up,
the season of singing birds
has come;
Song of Solomon 2v12

How to use this glossary: Each word has two definitions.
The first is a very simple word equivalent, just a phrase or a few words. The second is a more detailed explanation with examples.

Glossary Terms - A

Aaron
The older brother of Moses, usually regarded as the first high priest of the Hebrews. Ex. 28; 40:13-16.
A Levite known as the eldest son of Amram and his wife Jochebed, and elder brother of Moses. He is considered the traditional founder, ancestor and head of the Jewish priesthood, who, in company with Moses, led the Israelites out of Egypt.

Aaron also is known notoriously as the leader who allowed the Israelites to worship a golden calf.
[Aaronic Benediction]  [Exodus]  [Golden Calf]  [Levite]  [Moses

Aaronic Benediction
The familiar blessing that begins, "The Lord bless you and keep you." It is given the name "Aaronic" because it is the blessing God commanded Moses to give to his brother Aaron to speak to the people (Numbers 6:24-26).
[Benediction

Abba
An Aramaic word for father, typically used by a child when addressing their own parent. Jesus used the term when addressing God.
Is the Aramaic word for "father." The word occurs three times in the New Testament (Mark 14:36; Romans 8:15; Galatians 4:6). In each case it has its Greek translation subjoined to it, reading abba ho pater in the Greek text; abba, pater in the Latin Vulgate, and "Abba, Father" in the English version. St. Paul made use of the double expression in imitation of the early Christians, who, in their turn, used it in imitation of the prayer of Christ.
[Aramaic]  [God]  [Testament

Abomination
A most serious category of sin; things that God detests.
[God]  [Sin, Sinner

Abraham
Name means "father of many". The first of the patriarchs, the father of Ishmael by Hagar and of Isaac by Sarah, and the founder of the Hebrew people, (Genesis 11-25)
The ancestor of both the Arabs and the Jews. God made a covenant (special agreement) with Abraham that, if he remained faithful to God, he would have many descendants and the land of Canaan would be theirs for ever (Genesis 13:15-6). Furthermore, God promised Abraham that all people on earth would be blessed through him (Genesis 12:3). Abraham's story is told in Genesis 11-25.
[Abrahamic Covenant]  [Abram]  [Abramic]  [Arab]  [Isaac]  [Ishmael]  [Islam]  [Judaism]  [Melchizedek]  [Revelation, Progressive

Abrahamic Covenant
The contract (or "promise") God made with Abraham as recorded in the book of Genesis, in which He promised to make him a great nation and gave him the Land of Israel.
The unconditional covenant (agreement, disposition) between God as party of the first part in favour of Abraham and his progeny (all born-again Jews) as the party of the second part. This is a grace covenant from the justice of God. It promises a national land, Genesis 12:1, 13:14, and a king from Abraham's line, Genesis 17:5.
[Abraham]  [Covenant

Abrahamic Religions
The Abrahamic religions are Judaism, Christianity, and Islam, so-called because they are all descendants of the religious tradition of Abraham, the biblical patriarch.
According to the Bible, the patriarch Abraham had two sons: one (Ishmael) by his wife's servant Hagar, and one (Isaac) by his wife Sarah. According to this account, Jews are descended from Isaac's son Jacob, also called Israel. Biblical Judaism is based on the covenant between God and the "children of Israel" (descendants of Israel's twelve sons) at Sinai.
Christianity recognises Jesus as its messiah, as the son of God, and as being part of the Godhead himself. Islam recognises Jesus and the Jewish prophets (such as Moses) as being divinely inspired (though not divinely born), and in crucial distinction recognises Mohammed (the religion's founder) as a prophet.
[Abraham]  [Christianity]  [Islam]  [Judaism]  [Patriarch

Abram
Means "high father" in Hebrew. In the Old Testament God changed Abram's name to Abraham (see Genesis 17:5).
[Abraham]  [Abrahamic Covenant]  [Old Testament

Abramic
A group of religions that recognise Abraham as a patriarch. This includes Judaism, Christianity and Islam.
[Abraham]  [Patriarch

Absolution
Release from guilt, obligation or punishment.
A declaration, traditionally reserved for ordained ministers, of the forgiveness and wiping away of sins. It is simply an announcement of God's gift of forgiveness to the penitent.
[Forgive/Forgiveness]  [Guilt]  [Sin, Sinner

absolve
[Latin absolvere 'set free, acquit']
to set free from an obligation or the consequences of guilt
[L. absolvo, from ab and solvo, to loose or release; to absolve, to finish; Heb. to loose or loosen.]

To set free or release from some obligation, debt or responsibility; or from that which subjects a person to a burden or penalty; as to absolve a person from a promise; to absolve an offender, which amounts to an acquittal and remission of his punishment.
[Absolution]  [Remission]  [Sin, Sinner

Abstinence
A penitential practice consisting of voluntary deprivation of certain foods for religious reasons.
[Fasting]  [Penitent]  [Religion

Accountability
Responsibility to someone or for some activity
Most Christian denominations teach that we are to be accountable for our actions. We should also be accountable to a spiritual authority.
Accountability begins when a child is able to reason and discern right from wrong. Before that age, the child's parents are accountable for his or her actions.
[Christian Denomination]  [Christian(s)]  [Denomination

Act of God (An)
A manifestation especially of a violent or destructive natural force, such as a lightning strike or earthquake, that is beyond human power to cause, prevent, or control.
Such as loss by lightning, shipwreck, fire, etc.; loss arising from fatality, and not from one's own fault, theft, and so on. A Devonshire jury once found a verdict
- "That deceased died by the act of God, brought about by the flooded condition of the river."
[God

Acts of Apostles
The fifth book of the New Testament. It gives a record of the early Christian Church after Jesus' resurrection. It was written by Luke.
[Bible]  [Christian(s)]  [Judas Iscariot]  [Resurrection]  [Testament

AD
Anno Domini, which means in the year of our Lord, commonly abbreviated "A.D." It is not an abbreviation for "After Death."
[Anno Domini]  [CE

Adam
According to the Book of Genesis of the Bible, Adam was the first man created by God. His mate was Eve
(Hebrew for "human, man") Name given to the first created male (with Eve as female) by God in the Garden of Eden (Genesis 1).
He did not obey God and brought sin and death into the world. Genesis 1-5
Jesus is compared to Adam because Jesus is a new beginning for the human race. Jesus brings new life to those who believe in him.
Romans 5:12-21
1 Corinthians 15:20-22, 42-49
[Eden]  [Eve]  [Garden of Eden]  [God]  [Woman

Adam and Eve
The first man and woman created by God. Adam was created first and then Eve was created as a companion for him. They lived in the Garden of Eden, but after disobeying God, they were cast out of His presence. Their story is told in Genesis 2-3.
[Eden]  [Garden of Eden]  [God]  [Imago Dei]  [Sin, Sinner

Adiaphora
Literally, things that do not make a difference. A distinction between core doctrines of the church and those upon which disagreement can be tolerated without endangering unity.
Literally, "matters of indifference." Beliefs or practices which the sixteenth-century Reformers regarded as being tolerable, in that they were neither explicitly rejected nor stipulated by Scripture. For example, what ministers wore at church services was often regarded as a "matter of indifference." The concept is of importance in that it allowed the sixteenth-century reformers to adopt a pragmatic approach to many beliefs and practices, thus avoiding unnecessary confrontation.
[Beliefs]  [Fundamentalism

Adonai
Means "my lord" in Hebrew. This was the title used to refer to the God of the Israelites, Yahweh, whose name was forbidden to be spoken.
Jews also call God Adonai, or "my Lord." Since pronouncing YHVH is considered sinful, Jews would use Adonai instead in prayers. When the Masoretes added vowel pointings to the text of the Tanach in the first century A.D., they gave the word YHVH the vowels of Adonai, to remind the reader to say Adonai instead.
Many Christian bible translators misinterpreted this to mean that God's name was Jehovah, which is the result of combining Adonai's vowels with YHVH's consonants, written using Latin orthography in which "J" is pronounced as the English "Y." This name may be etymologically related to the Phoenician god Tammuz or Adonis.
[Lord]  [Tetragrammaton]  [Yahweh(YHWH)

Adoption
The part of salvation in which God receives the estranged sinner back into the relationship and benefits of being His child.
This is the Biblical connotation of adoption, which is based on the Roman aristocratic function of adoption in the time when the New Testament was written; it is not the same as our Twentieth century practice. In Scripture adoption means to be recognised by God as an adult son positionally at salvation (and an adult son experientially at maturity). The Latin adoptia is the exact equivalent of the Greek huiothesia, meaning to adopt as an adult son. Imputations at salvation are made as part of the ceremony of recognising that we now have a plan and purpose in life. All believers become adopted as sons at salvation. Being in union with Christ, we are joint-heirs with Christ, and are therefore adopted at the moment of salvation, Gal 3:26.
[Forgive/Forgiveness]  [God]  [Sin, Sinner

Adoration
Refers to the external acts of reverent admiration or honour given to a God / divine being
The act of paying honours to a divine being; the worship paid to God; the act of addressing as a God.

Adoration consists in external homage, accompanied with the highest reverence. It is used for the act of praying, or preferring requests or thanksgiving, to the Supreme Being.
[Divine]  [Worship

Adultery
Voluntary sexual relation of married person with someone other than spouse.
Breaking the marriage promise by having sexual relations with someone other than your husband or wife.
Exodus 20:14 2
Samuel 11-12
Matthew 5:27-30
John 8:1-11
[Commandment(s)

Advent
The beginning of the church year. Starts on the Sunday nearest November 30th (St. Andrew's day) until Christmas. Advent is from the Latin meaning coming or arrival.
From the Latin, "coming." The coming of or the arrival of something very important as in the advent of Christ's return. Advent is also a Christian time of preparation preceding Christmas.
[Christmas]  [Christmas, Twelve days of]  [Epiphany

Advocate
(Gr. parakletos), one who pleads another's cause, who helps another by defending or comforting him.
It is a name given by Christ three times to the Holy Ghost (John 14:16; 15:26; 16:7, where the Greek word is rendered "Comforter, ").
It is applied to Christ in 1 John 2:1, where the same Greek word is rendered "Advocate," the rendering which it should have in all the places where it occurs. Tertullus "the orator" (Acts 24:1) was a Roman advocate whom the Jews employed to accuse Paul before Felix.
[Christ]  [Holy Spirit

Agape
The Greek word for the type of love that represents the decision to selflessly give, as opposed to emotional attraction.
Is a Greek word for love. It was used by the early Christians to refer to the special love for God and God's love for man, as well as the self-sacrificing love they believed all should have for each other. Spiritual love as distinguished from humanistic, brotherly love or erotic, romantic love.
[Christian(s)]  [Love

Agnostic
(from Greek, "not knowing") a person who believes that, at our present level of knowledge, we cannot know whether or not a God exists.
The word Agnostic derives from the negation of the Greek word [gnosis], which means esoteric knowledge of higher things. Thus, agnostic means No-knowledge or not knowing.
Agnostics generally believe that no one can not know whether or not God exists. Some take a more liberal approach, saying "they" do not know, but that existence of a Deity might be possible.
[Atheist]  [Deity]  [God]  [Theism

Agnus Dei
Agnus Dei \Ag"nus De"i\ [L., lamb of God.]
A triple prayer in the sacrifice of the Mass, beginning with the words ``Agnus Dei.''
Latin for "Lamb of God," this hymn in the communion liturgy draws on the words of John the Baptist who pointed his disciples to Jesus, the Lamb of God (Jn 1:29). In the context of the communion liturgy, we are praying to Christ who is there present in his body and blood to have mercy on us and grant us peace.
[Communion]  [Liturgy]  [Pray(er)

Alabaster
This substance, the "alabaster" of scripture, is often termed Oriental alabaster, since the early examples came from the East. The Oriental alabaster was highly esteemed for making small perfume-bottles or ointment vases called alabastra;
and this has been conjectured to be a possible source of the name.

occurs only in the New Testament in connection with the box of "ointment of
spikenard very precious," with the contents of which a woman anointed the head
of Jesus as he sat at supper in the house of Simon the leper (Matt. 26:7; Mark
14:3; Luke 7:37).
[Mary Magdalene]  [Spikenard

All Saints Day
The festival of All Saints (Festum omnium sanctorum), also formerly known as "All Hallows, " or "Hallowmas, " is a feast of the Roman Catholic Church celebrated in honour of all the saints, known or unknown.
A Christian day of remembrance of the saints of the faith- both recognised and unknown. It has been observed since 609 CE. The Western church celebrates it on NOV-1; Eastern Orthodox churches celebrate All Saints Day in the springtime -- the Sunday after Pentecost.
[Calendar]  [Christian(s)]  [Church

All Souls' Day
The second day of November; a feast day of the Roman Catholic church, on which supplications are made for the souls of the faithful dead.
(ie. the Day of the Dead), is celebrated yearly on NOV-2. This is a day for prayer and alms giving in memory of ancestors who have died. Believers pray for the souls of the dead, in an effort to hasten their transition from Purgatory to Heaven. It is primarily celebrated by Roman Catholics.
[Alms]  [Catholic Roman]  [Heaven]  [Holiday]  [Purgatory

Allah
Arabic: allah, "the god" from "al" the and ilah "god". The chief Muslim name for God.
This is an Arabic word which means "the One True God." Muslims in the West use Allah and God interchangeably.
[Arabic]  [Muslim/Moslem

Allegory
Literary form in which plot, setting, characters etc. are meant to be interpreted symbolically or figuratively.
Used only in Galatians 4:24, where the apostle refers to the history of Isaac the free-born, and Ishmael the slave-born, and makes use of it allegorically.
Every parable is an allegory. Nathan (2 Samuel 12:1-4) addresses David in an allegorical narrative. In the eightieth Psalm there is a beautiful allegory: "Thou broughtest a vine out of Egypt, ..." In Ecclesiastes 12:2-6, there is a striking allegorical description of old age.
[Bible]  [Interpretation

Alleluia
Latin transliteration of Hebrew "Hallelujah," or "Praise the LORD!"
The Greek form (Revelation 19:1, 3, 4, 6) of the Hebrew Hallelujah = Praise ye Jehovah, which begins or ends several of the psalms (106, 111, 112, 113, etc.).
[Hallelujah]  [Hebrew]  [Jehovah]  [Psalm

Almighty
Having absolute power; all-powerful: almighty God.
I am the Almighty God. - Gen. 17:
The Almighty, the omnipotent God. - Rev. 1:8
Possessing all power; omnipotent; being of unlimited might; being of boundless sufficiency; appropriately applied to the Supreme Being.
[God]  [Omnipotence Of God

Alms
Money or other offerings of the people for the work of the Church.
Works of mercy or monetary gifts given to help the poor. Throughout the Scriptures, God's people are called to help those less fortunate than themselves (see Matthew 25:31-46).
[Church]  [God]  [Mercy]  [Scripture(s)

Aloes
(Heb. 'ahalim), a fragrant wood (Num. 24:6; Ps. 45:8; Prov.7:17 the Aquilaria agallochum of botanists, or, as some suppose, the costly gum or perfume extracted from the wood.

Aloewood was used by the Egyptians for embalming dead bodies. Nicodemus brought it (pounded aloe-wood) to embalm the body of Christ (John 19:39); but whether this was the same as that mentioned elsewhere is uncertain.
[Crucify, Crucifixion]  [Nicodemus

Alpha
The first letter of the Greek alphabet used with Omega (last letter) to refer to the beginning and the end.
The first letter of the Greek alphabet, as Omega is the last. These letters occur in the text of Revelation 1:8,11; 21:6; 22:13, and are represented by Alpha and Omega respectively.
They mean "the first and last."
(Comp. Hebrews 12:2; Isaiah 41:4;44:6; Revelation 1:11,17; 2:8.)
In the symbols of the early Christian Church these two letters are frequently combined with the cross or with Christ's monogram to denote his divinity.
[Alpha-Omega]  [Omega

Alpha-Omega
The first and the last letters of the Greek alphabet. Christians refer to Jesus as the Alpha and Omega of life.
The first and the last letters of the Greek alphabet, symbolising "the beginning and the end," or the divinity and eternity of Christ. (Revelation 1: 8). These two letters also form the monogram of Christ.
[Alpha]  [Christ]  [Omega

Alter
The table in Christian churches where communion is given [syn: communion table, Lord's table]
(Heb. mizbe'ah, from a word meaning "to slay"), any structure of earth (Exodus 20:24) or unwrought stone (Exodus 20:25) on which sacrifices were offered. Altars were generally erected in conspicuous places (Genesis. 22:9; Ezekiel. 6:3; 2 Kings 23:12; 16:4; 23:8; Acts 14:13). The word is used in Hebrews 13:10 for the sacrifice offered upon it--the sacrifice Christ offered.
[Church]  [Communion]  [Last/Lord's Supper

Altruism
A selfless concern for others.
[French altruisme, probably from Italian altrui, someone else, from Latin alter, other]
Regard for others, both natural and moral; devotion to the interests of others; brotherly kindness; -- opposed to egoism or selfishness
[Egoism]  [Philosophy

Amen
(Hebrew, "may it be so") A word used at the close of a prayer to show agreement to its content.
May it be so! Used in the Old Testament to indicate agreement, to ratify something said, (Neh. 8.6;), or as a solemn response of approval by the people, (Psalm 106.48;). Later it was used to emphasise prayer, (Rom. 11.36;), or to express the confirmation of God's promises, (Rev. 3.14;), being used by Jesus, to refer to Himself.
[Anthem]  [Pray(er)

Anagogy
From the Greek word "anago" - to lead. Interpreting the scriptures, or other writings, mystically, in order to uncover a hidden meanings.
Interpretation of a word, passage, or text (as of Scripture or poetry) that finds beyond the literal, allegorical, and moral senses a fourth and ultimate spiritual or mystical sense
[Allegory]  [Interpretation]  [literalism]  [Scripture(s)

Anathema
A formal curse or condemnation excommunicating a person from a church or damning them.
A thing suspended, is the equivalent of the Hebrew word signifying a thing or person voted. Any object so devoted to Jehovah was irredeemable. If an inanimate object, it was to be given to the priests, (Numbers 18:14) if a living creature or even a man, it was to be slain. (Leviticus 27:28,29) The word anathema frequently occurs in St. Paul's writings, and is generally translated accused. An examination of the passages in which it occurs shows that it had acquired a more general sense as expressive either of strong feeling, (Romans 9:3) or of dislike and condemnation. (1 Corinthians 12:3; 16:22; Galatians 1:9)
[Church]  [Condemnation]  [Excommunication

Andrew (Apostle)
One of the 12 apostles of Jesus. Mark 3:18; John 1:40-42.
From the Greek name Andreas, which derives from aner "man" (genitive andros "of a man"). In the New Testament the apostle Andrew was the brother of the apostle Peter. He had been a disciple of John the Baptist (John 1:37-40) and was one of the first to follow Jesus.
[Apostle]  [Disciple]  [Peter (Apostle)

Angel
(Greek, lit. "messenger"). A "messenger" sent by God to minister to those who are God's.
Came to be used specifically for a class of extrahuman ("spiritual") beings, both good (usually) and bad ("demons") who become involved in human affairs; common to Judaism, Christianity and Islam.
[Cherub/Cherubim]  [Christmas]  [Gabriel]  [Herald]  [Jesus]  [John (the Baptist)

Anglican
A member of the Church of England or of any of the churches related to it.
Simply means English; a term indicating the English origins of the Episcopal Church. Sometimes seen in the expressions Anglican Church or Anglican Communion--both of which terms simply indicate any national church which derives from the Church of England
[Church

Anno Domini
Means "[in the] year of [Our] Lord" in Latin.; used in reckoning dates after the supposed year Christ was born.
Commonly abbreviated "A.D.", refers to the conventional numbering of years in the Gregorian calendar. It uses an epoch based on the traditionally reckoned year of the birth of Jesus Christ. The A.D. era is the only system in everyday use in the Western hemisphere and Europe, and is also the common system in regular commercial use in the rest of the world. Timewise it is equivalent to Common Era.
[BC]  [CE]  [Christ]  [Jesus]  [Lord]  [Ussher's Chronology

Anno Mundi
'in the year of the world'; dating from creation, fixed by Archbishop Ussher at 4004 BC (abbr. A.M.).
Latin for "In the Year of the World." The Jewish year is given in terms of "Anno Mundi," meaning the count is meant to reflect the number of years since the Creation of the World.
[BC]  [Jew(s)

Annunciation
When the angel Gabriel told Mary and Joseph that she was pregnant with Jesus.
This refers to the announcement to Joseph (in Matthew 1:20) and to Mary (Luke 1:26-35) of Jesus' future birth.
[Christmas]  [Jesus

Anoint
To put oil on during a religious ceremony as a sign of sanctification or consecration.
Samuel 16:1-13
1 John 2:20-21
[Prophet]  [Sanctify

Anointed
Distinguished as special. It often refers to an experience of God's presence during prayer or through some tangible blessing from him.
Biblically, anointing was a ritual dating from Old Testament times, involving the placing of olive oil on someone's head to set them apart for the office of priest or king.
In New Testament times, the oil became symbolic of the Holy Spirit. The terms Messiah and Christ mean "the anointed one," or one set apart by God for a specific duty or office -- in this case Lord and Saviour.
The ritual of anointing the sick is mentioned in James 5:14, however the NCV offers an alternative rendition of this scripture: "Anyone who is sick should call the church's elders. They should pray for and pour oil on the person in the name of the Lord."
Pour oil on doesn't sound quite as spiritual as anointing -- but it is.
The Bible also speaks of the anointing of the Holy Spirit that we as Christians receive through Jesus (1 John 2:27, NIV). But here the NCV replaces anointing with the simple word gift. When we say anointing, what we really mean is that a person has a special gift from God. Why not say that?
[Holy Spirit]  [OT

Antediluvian
Taking place in or belonging to the era before the Biblical flood.
Is derived from the two Latin words ante meaning "before" and diluvium meaning "a flood." The period before the great deluge of Genesis 7 is referred to as the antediluvian world.
[Flood, Biblical]  [Noah]  [Rainbow

Anthem
A Christian term for a hymn whose words come from the Bible.
Sacred vocal music using scriptural words (a text from Scripture or other sources) that is sung or said during the liturgy; now also any vocal music or hymn sung by a choir but not by the congregation;
[Hymn]  [Liturgy]  [Praise]  [Scripture(s)]  [Worship

Anthropology
The doctrine of, or study of man.
Is derived from the two Greek words (anthropos) meaning "man" and (logos) meaning "word." Biblical anthropology deals with the study of the Bible's revelation of the nature of man both before and after the fall and both before and after regeneration. A fundamental idea in Biblical anthropology is the image of God.
[Bible]  [God]  [Psychology

Anthropomorphism
The conception of God as having human characteristics or existing in human form.
Attributing human characteristics to non-human entities such as animals, inanimate objects, or God. Genesis 3:8 is an anthropomorphic image of God walking in the garden. The book of Proverbs contains several anthropomorphic portrayals of Wisdom as a woman.
[God

Anti-Semitism
Literally means opposed to Semites (which would include Arabic and other semitic peoples as well), but usually applied specifically to opposition to Jews
Hatred, prejudice, oppression, or discrimination against Jews or Judaism. Actually, the term is misnamed. "Semitic" originally meant the descendants of Shem, which include both Jews and Muslims in the Middle East. Now, the term is used mainly to refer to Jews.

Antisemitismis hatred of people because of their Jewish ancestry. Although sometimes used literally for hatred of all Semitic peoples, the phrase "anti- Semitism" was originally used to refer to hatred of Jews exclusively.

There are two distinct forms of anti-Semitism, and a myriad of degrees between: The racist view perceives Jews as people of a racially distinct origin from other peoples, and that discrimination on the basis of such distinctness is valid.

The other form is religious or more appropriately ethnic-based. Since Judaism carries beliefs which predate other religious traditions, and does not hold aspects of other traditions, Jews have faced a long history of hateful discrimination by people of different faiths.
[Holocaust]  [Jew(s)]  [Pogrom

Antichrist
One who opposes or rejects Christ
Means "against Christ." In the last days a great evil power called the antichrist will rule over the world and pretend to be like Christ. But Jesus Christ will come and destroy him.
2 Thessalonians 2:1-12
Revelation 11-13
[Christ]  [Evil]  [Revelation, book of

Antidisestablishmentarianism
Being opposed to the belief that there should no longer be an official church a the country. The word is sometimes quoted as the longest word in the English language. There is a town in Wales with a larger number of letters, but it is a name, not a word.
Is a political philosophy that is opposed to the separation of church and state. The term originated in the context of the nineteenth century Church of England; antidisestablismentarians were opposed to proposals to remove its status as the state church of England. The term has largely fallen into disuse, although the issue itself is still current.
It can be broken down as follows:
~ism ...... the philosophy of
~arian~ ...... those people who believe in
anti~ ...... opposition to
~dis~ ...... the removal of
~establishment~ ...... the Church of England as the official state church

Antidisestablishmentarianism is often quoted as one of the longest English words that has an actual meaning: although there is a longer word; Pseudoantidisestablishmentarianism, meaning false opposition to the separation of the state and the church.
[Anglican]  [Church

Antinomian
The belief that one is not obligated to any law because of faith in Christ. While seeking to elevate God's grace these deny an important element of God's holiness. (Romans 6:1-2)
(from Greek, "opposing law"). A general term for persons or positions that consciously take a stand against the established rules and laws. In Christian tradition, a name given to those who felt that salvation by grace excused them from obeying temporal law(s).
[Christianity]  [God]  [Grace]  [Salvation

Antioch
A town in southern Turkey; ancient commercial centre and capital of Syria; an early centre of Christianity
In Syria, on the river Orontes, about 16 miles from the Mediterranean, and some 300 miles north of Jerusalem. It was the metropolis of Syria, and afterwards became the capital of the Roman province in Asia. It ranked third, after Rome and Alexandria, in point of importance, of the cities of the Roman empire. It was called the "first city of the East." Christianity was early introduced into it (Acts 11:19, 21, 24), and the name "Christian" was first applied here to its professors (Acts 11:26).

It is intimately connected with the early history of the gospel (Acts 6:5; 11:19, 27, 28, 30; 12:25; 15:22-35; Gal. 2:11, 12). It was the great central point whence missionaries to the Gentiles were sent forth.
[Christianity]  [Paul

Apocalypse
The Greek name of the Book of Revelation
The Apocalypse has now commonly come to refer to the end of the world. Its derivation is from the Greek word apokalupsis meaning revelation (literally, 'a lifting of the veil'). The current meaning may be an ellipsis of the phrase apokalupsis eschaton (apocalyptic eschatology), meaning "revelation of knowledge of the end of time." This ellipsis in common usage echoes the ellipsis in the title of the last book of the Bible, The Revelation of St. John the Divine, (known commonly as Revelation), in which the end of the world is prophesied in graphic detail.
[Armageddon]  [Horsemen of the Apocalypse]  [Revelation, book of

Apocrypha
14 books of the Old Testament included in the Vulgate but omitted in Jewish and Protestant versions of the Bible
A section of the Bible not accepted by all Christians. A collection of fourteen books written after the last book of the Hebrew Scriptures (Old Testament) and before the first book of the Christian Scriptures (New Testament). It is accepted by the Roman Catholic Church as part of the inspired cannon of the Bible, but is rejected by most Protestant denominations.

This comes from the Greek apokruphos, which means secret or hidden. It refers to a collection of Biblical books which appear in the Catholic version of the Bible, but which do not also appear in the Hebrew collection.

Because of this discrepancy, Luther removed them when he translated the Bible into German. Thus, Protestant versions of the Bible all lack these books:
Tobit Judith I Maccabees II Maccabees
Wisdom of Solomon Ecclesiasticus Baruch

A Greek adjective in the neuter plural (from apokruphos, "hidden, concealed") denotes strictly "things concealed." Old Testament Apocrypha, specifically the fourteen books written after the Old Testament canon was closed and which, being the least remote from the canonical books, laid strongest claim to canonicity...The body of Jewish literature written between the second century B.C. and the second century A.D., not included in the canon of the Hebrew Bible.
[Bible]  [Canon of Scripture]  [King James]  [Vulgate

Apologetics
The discipline that teaches Christians how to give a reason for their hope (1 Pet 3:15). Also known as defending the faith.
A systematic defence of a belief system. It is derived from the Greek "apologia" which means to create a defence. See 1 Peter 3:15.

Most apologetics texts are directed to members of another religion, or to secularists. However they tend to be read in practice by the faith group whose beliefs are defended.

Theologians usually break Apologetics into three groups called Classical Apologetics, Evidential Apologetics, and Evangelical or presuppositional Apologetics.

Classical Apologetics: uses rational arguments to prove that God exists, and relies on evidence to support biblical claims and miracles.

Evidential Apologetics: uses evidences such as miracles, fulfilled prophecies, etc. to prove that God exists and that the biblical account of Christ and his message are valid and trustworthy.

Presuppositional Apologetics: starts with the assumption that God exists and that the Bible is true. They argue from this that their view of the Trinity, salvation, Heaven, Hell, etc. is valid.
[Belief]  [Faith]  [Religion]  [Theology

Apostasy
Literally, "turning away." This sin is committed when a Christian or body of believers rejects the true faith of Christ (1 Tim. 1:5 7; 4:1-3).
A falling away from, or desertion of, the Faith. Can also refer to those who outwardly demonstrate a Christian faith but have grown cold in their devotion to God.
[Backslider]  [Believer]  [Faith

Apostle
One sent forth
The term apostle literally means "one sent out" and comes from the Greek verb apostellein. It does not appear very often in classical Greek, but it is used many times in the New Testament with a variety of meanings.

Sometimes, it simply refers to the immediate disciples of Jesus who followed him when his ministry was active. Other times it refers to those who are claimed to have been personal witnesses of his resurrection. The term is also applied to believers who had strong faith and spirit. Finally, it came to be applied to Christian missionaries generally, bringing Jesus' message to those who had never heard of him. The corresponding word in Hebrew, saliah, was used to refer to anyone given full authority to represent someone else for some specified period of time and for some specified task.

A term used for the first generation of missionaries of the Christian church. The first twelve apostles were Jesus' disciples, sent out by Him. Others include Paul, James, Barnabas and Matthias.
[Apostles, Twelve]  [Great Commission]  [Jesus]  [Paul

Apostles' Creed
The oldest statement of belief in the church, based on the teachings of the Apostles.
A profession of faith consisting of three sections concerned with God, Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit. According to legend, the Creed was jointly composed by the Twelve Apostles.
[Apostle]  [Athanasian Creed]  [Church]  [Faith

Apostles, Twelve
The twelve apostles are those chosen by Jesus Christ to be his messengers in spreading the gospel.
The twelve men whom Jesus chose to be with Him during His ministry on earth. They were: Andrew, Bartholomew, James and John (sons of Zebedee), James (son of Alphaeus), Judas Iscariot, Matthew, Philip, Simon Peter, Simon the Zealot, Thaddaeus and Thomas. After Judas' death, Matthias took his place as an apostle. Paul and Barnabas are also called apostles sometimes.
[Andrew (Apostle)]  [Apostle]  [Bartholomew (Apostle)]  [James, son of Alphaeus]  [James, Son of Zebedee]  [John (Apostle)]  [Judas Iscariot]  [Matthew (Apostle)]  [Miracle]  [Peter (Apostle)]  [Philip (Apostle)]  [Simon (Apostle)]  [Thaddeus (Apostle)]  [Thomas (Apostle)

Arab
According to tradition, modern day Arab people are the descendants of Ishmael, Abraham's son by Hagar.
Member of Semitic people inhabiting originally Saudi Arabia, now Middle East generally.

The Arab countries include Iraq, Saudi Arabia, Syria and Egypt
[Arabic]  [Ishmael]  [Semitic

Arabic
Of or relating to Arabia, the Arabs, their language, or their culture.
A Semitic language consisting of numerous dialects that is the principal language of Arabia, Jordan, Syria, Iraq, Lebanon, Egypt, and parts of northern Africa.
[Semitic

Aramaic
One of the languages used by people in Jesus' time, probably the language that Jesus and the disciples would have spoken to each other.
Was a language spoken in Israel and Syria from perhaps 500 BC to 500 AD. It is a member of the Semitic languages group. Aramaic is used in many Jewish holy texts. Some of the later parts of the Hebrew Bible, most of the Gemara section of the Talmud, and the Zohar are written in Aramaic.
[Disciple]  [Jesus

Archangel
A member of the highest rank of angels. Only two are mentioned in the Bible: Gabriel and Michael.
In the Bible, a Greek word found only in the New Testament in two places: 1 Thess. 4:16, "For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trumpet of God; and the dead in Christ shall rise first"; and Jude 9, "But Michael the archangel, when he disputed with the devil and argued about the body of Moses, did not dare pronounce against him a railing judgement, but said, 'The Lord rebuke you.'" Archangels seem to of a class of angels of great rank and power. Apparently, there are three archangels named: Michael, Gabriel, and Lucifer.
[Angel]  [Gabriel]  [Michael

Ark of the Covenant/Testimony
A special box made of acacia wood covered with gold. It had two gold angels on top of it. It held the two stone tablets inscribed with the Ten Commandments and other special objects.
(Exod.25.10; Heb. 9.4).
The Ark of the Covenant was very sacred to the Ancient Jews.

A rectangular box, approximately 4 feet x 2.5 feet x 2.5 feet. Inside of the Ark were the tablets of the Ten Commandments, a jar of manna, and Aaron's Rod that budded (Heb. 9:4). It was covered with gold and on its lid, called the Mercy Seat, were two cherubs without outspread wings. It was carried on poles inserted into rings at its four lower corners.

The Ark of the Covenant was a sign to the people of Israel that God was with them.

The Ark of the Covenant was place in the Holy of Holies in the Tabernacle and later in the Temple. After the Ark was placed in the temple sanctuary by Solomon, it dropped from history.

Once a year, the High Priest would enter the Holy of Holies and sprinkle blood on the Mercy Seat. This was symbolic of the forgiveness of the sins of the Jewish nation.

Also called the "Ark of the Testimony" (Ex. 30:6), "Ark of God" (1 Sam. 3:3), and the "Ark of the covenant of the Lord" (Deut. 10:8).
[Exodus]  [Holy of holies (Most Holy Place)]  [Manna]  [Moses]  [Tabernacle]  [Temple]  [Ten Commandments

Ark, Noah's
The ark, or ship, built by Noah. In which he took not only his family but a male and female pair of every animal at the time of the Flood sent by God (Genesis 5-10).

After 40 days and 40 nights, the rain stopped, and the inhabitants of the ark were the only surviving living things.
Noah's ark, a building of gopher-wood, and covered with pitch, 300 cubits long, 50 cubits broad, and 30 cubits high (Genesis 6:14-16); an oblong floating house of three stories, with a door in the side and a window in the roof. It was 100 years in building (Genesis 5:32; 7:6). It was intended to preserve certain persons and animals from the deluge which God was about to bring over the earth. It contained eight persons (Genesis 7:13; 2 Peter 2:5), and of all "clean" animals seven pairs, and of "unclean" one pair, and of birds seven pairs of each sort
(Genesis 7:2, 3). It was in the form of an oblong square, with flat bottom and
sloping roof.

Traditions of the Deluge, by which the race of man was swept from the earth, and of the ark of Noah have been found existing among all nations.
[Flood, Biblical]  [Methuselah]  [Mount Ararat]  [Noah

Armageddon
The word "Armageddon" only occurs in Rev. 16:16. It is the location of the final great battle between the forces of Good (lead by Jesus) and the forces of Evil (lead by Satan). .
In Christian apocalyptic literature (the Book of Revelation), Armageddon is the site of the final battle between the kings of the earth (incited by Satan) and the Christian God.

The term comes from the Hebrew har megidd˘ which means "the mountain of Megiddo" and is the place where Armageddon is believed to at least start. Unfortunately, Meggido, a strategically located city where several ancient battles were fought, does not itself have a mountain, so the geographic reference is unclear. Whereas the word was originally applied just to the location of the final battle, today it is often applied to the event itself.
[Antichrist]  [Apocalypse]  [End Times]  [Horsemen of the Apocalypse]  [Revelation, book of

Arminianism
Of or relating to the theology of Jacobus Arminius and his followers, who rejected the Calvinist doctrines of predestination and election and who believed that human free will is compatible with God's sovereignty.
[Calvinism]  [Elect, Election]  [Predestination

Ascension
The dramatic departure of the risen Christ from earth to heaven, which took place forty days after the resurrection. The accounts of the ascension can be found in Acts 1:9-11; Mark 16:19; Luke 24:50- 51
The Ascension is one of the great feasts in the Christian liturgical calendar, and refers to the Ascension of Jesus Christ into Heaven forty days after His resurrection from the dead. The event is recorded in the New Testament in Acts chapter 1.

Ascension Day is always a Thursday; in some churches it is commemorated on the subsequent Sunday (the Sunday before Pentecost).
[Ecclesiastical Calendar]  [Pentecost]  [Resurrection of Christ

Ash Wednesday
The seventh Wednesday before Easter and the first day of Lent, on which many Christians receive a mark of ashes on the forehead as a token of penitence and mortality.
Christian holy day marking the beginning of Lent, forty-six days (the 7th Wednesday) prior to Easter. The name is taken from a practice of imposing ashes on the foreheads of penitent believers who acknowledge their unworthiness to receive God's grace and salvation and are reminded of their bodily origin in dust and their eventual return to dust (ashes). The date of Ash Wednesday changes annually and depends on the reckoning of Easter Sunday.
[Easter]  [Holy Week]  [Lent]  [Quinquagesima Sunday]  [Shrove Tuesday

Ashes to ashes dust to dust
From the English Burial Service. From The Bible, Genesis iii 19 'Dust thou art, and unto dust thou shalt return.'
We therefore commit his body to the ground; earth to earth, ashes to ashes, dust to dust; in sure and certain hope of the Resurrection.
The Burial Service, Book of Common Prayer (1662).
[Death]  [Funeral

Assurance
Freedom from doubt; belief in yourself and your abilities
he resurrection of Jesus (Acts 17:31) is the "assurance" (Gr. pistis, generally
rendered "faith") or pledge God has given that his revelation is true and
worthy of acceptance.
Theologically, assurance is the state of being confident in a condition or outcome. Usually it is applied to one's assurance of salvation. Texts often used to support assurance of salvation are:
"and I give eternal life to them, and they shall never perish; and no one shall snatch them out of My hand" John 10:28
"These things I have written to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, in order that you may know that you have eternal life." 1 John 5:13

This assurance is given by the Holy Spirit.
[Faith]  [Holy Spirit]  [Resurrection

Astrology
The study of the positions and aspects of celestial bodies in the belief that they have an influence on the course of natural earthly occurrences and human affairs.

It was developed independently in Greece and India circa 300 BCE.
[Divination

Athanasian Creed
A 5th-century Christian statement of belief of unknown authorship, formerly attributed to St. Athanasius, Greek patriarch of Alexandria.
A profession of faith which spells out the doctrine of the Trinity and of the Incarnation and includes of list of the important events in Jesus' redeeming work. It is introduced and concluded with the declaration that belief in the truth it proclaims is necessary to salvation.
[Apostles' Creed]  [Creed]  [Doctrine]  [Nicene Creed]  [Redeem, Redemption]  [Trinity

Atheist
(from Greek, "no deity") A general term for the position that there is no God/deity
Atheism is from the Greek [a] a negation of the word following, and [theos] meaning God. i.e., No God, or the belief that there is no God.
[Agnostic]  [Deist]  [Deity]  [God]  [Theism

Atonement
An act to become "at one" with God through repentance of sins
To make amends in order to reconcile two parties. Jesus Christ made atonement to God by dying to pay the penalty for the sins of those who would believe in Him thereby reconciling man to God.
[Expiation]  [Jesus]  [Reconcile, Reconciliation]  [Sin, Sinner

Atonement, Day of
An annual Hebrew feast when the high priest offered sacrifices for the sins of the nation (Lev 23:27; 25:9). It was the only fast period required by the Mosaic law (Lev 16:29; 23:31).

It was observed on the 10th day of the 7th month (Tishri). A day of great solemnity and strict observance of the law.
In Judaism, the most sacred holy day, falling on the 10th day of the Jewish month of Tishri (usually late September or early October). It is a day of fasting and prayer for forgiveness for sins committed during the year.

The Day of Atonement takes place in the fall, between Rosh Hashannah (New Years) and the Feast of Booths. In Hebrew, it is called "Yom Kippur." (Yom Kippur can be translated with 'Day of Atonement'.)

It is a time when all Jews atone for their sins and plead with God for forgiveness.

Jews gather in synagogues on the Eve of Yom Kippur, when the fast begins, and return the following morning to continue confessing, doing penance, and praying for forgiveness. The most solemn of the prayers, Kol Nidre, is chanted on the Eve of Yom Kippur. Biblical origins are found in Leviticus, where the priestly ritual of atonement is described.

In biblical times, a scapegoat was sent into the wilderness as a sacrifice.
[Calendar, Jewish]  [Feast of Tabernacles]  [Jewish feasts]  [Scapegoat]  [Yom Kippur

Attributes of God
Qualities or characteristics that are attributed to, or predicated of, God (e.g., all-powerful, allknowing, everywhere present).
God, as viewed by followers of Judaism, Christianity and Islam is traditionally thought to be omnipotent (all powerful), omniscient (all knowing), omnipresent (present everywhere) and all loving. Other attributes include holy, good, wise, and just.
[Omnipotence Of God]  [Omnipresence Of God]  [Omniscience Of God]  [Theology

Authorised Version
Formerly used to refer in print to the Authorised Version of the Bible, otherwise known as the King James Version
Synonym for the King James Version of the Bible, an English translation of the Bible published in 1611 . It was traditionally referred to in print as AV, but is now more commonly designated as KJ.
[Bible]  [King James

Authoritative
Of recognised authority or excellence
The Bible is the sole authority for all matters of faith and practice. This is so because the Bible is inspired (God-breathed) and therefore without error.
[Bible]  [Faith]  [God]  [Inspired, inspiration - plenary

Autograph
An original manuscript in the author's handwriting.
An original writing of a biblical document. The original manuscript written. The autographs would be the actual, original written document from which copies are made.
[Higher Criticism]  [Manuscript

AV
Formerly used to refer in print to the Authorised Version of the Bible, otherwise known as the King James Version
Abbreviation for Authorised Version of the Bible, the original name given to what is now more frequently referred to as the King James Version (KJV) of 1611.
[Authorised Version]  [Bible]  [KJ

Axiom
A self-evident proposition; a statement that needs no proof because its truth is considered obvious.
The word axiom comes from the Greek word axioma, which means that which is deemed worthy or fit or that which is considered self-evident. The word comes from (axioein), meaning to deem worthy, which in turn comes from (axios), meaning worthy. Among the philosophers of the ancient Greeks an axiom was a claim which could be seen to be true without any need for proof.
[Philosophy