#424 He Has Made Both One
Ephesians 4:3-4, Ephesians 2:11-15, Luke 4:14-30, I Kings 17:1, 26-28,
Romans 2:11-16, 28-29, 1:19-20, 3:28-30, 15:4-13, II Samuel 22:50, Deuteronomy 32:43
Psalm 117:1, Isaiah 11:10, Ephesians 2:14-22
Who Are The Heathen and The Gentiles? *
Far more than by His creation, God makes Himself known by His Word. What He says He is, He is. What He says He will do, He will do. He keeps His Word. His Word is Truth. Our job is to pay attention, to take heed to what God says, and simply believe. To know God in truth is to truly know exactly what He says, to whom He says it, when He says it, where He says it, and how He says it. That is why the integrity of God’s Word is always at stake.
To misunderstand a word or phrase or statement in the Scriptures results in wrong believing and therefore wrong results. The purpose of this study is to get the right understanding of one particular word of truth. This vital, significant word was spoken and written by God for men to ‘rightly’ know and rightly believe.
In the Hebrew text of the Old Testament this word is goy. In the Hebrew-Chaldee Lexicon, goy is defined: “a people, a confluence of men…a body politic, or whole people,” Additionally, it states that “the word is general, and used of the nations at large.”
The Hebrew word goy corresponds in meaning with the Greek word ethnos. Both words mean ‘nation’ or ‘people’, that is: the people of a nation, or a nation’s people.
Because both words are common nouns, they both describe a nation’s people in general terms and do not identify certain people with specific characteristics. Both are also not proper nouns which would name a particular person or thing. It is therefore perfectly fitting that the Hebrew goy and the Greek ethnos would and should be translated as a ‘people’, a ‘nation’ or ‘nations’.
In the KJV translation, people are many times referred to as the ‘heathen’ and the ‘Gentiles’. Who or what are the people labeled by these words? This study will look at: 1) The historical background that influenced the use of these terms. 2) What is implied by using these words in the translations of God’s Word? and 3) What is the truth that is clearly and simply being stated in the Word of God by the words goy and ethnos as used in the Scriptures?
Remarkably, both goy and ethnos are translated four different words, and these same four are used in both the Old and the New Testaments. The four words are: 1) nation, 2) heathen, 3) people and 4) Gentiles. Here are the totals:
Old Testament: The word goy is translated:
New Testament: The word ethnos is translated:
nation–64x heathen–5x people–2x Gentiles–93x Total: 164x
*This is only an excerpt from the complete article.