Tuesday, April 3, 2007


Greek Word Pronunciation: be-bai-AH-oh
Strong’s Number: 950
Goodrich/Kohlenberger Number: 1011
Key Verse: “salvation ... was confirmed to us by those who heard …” -- Hebrews 2:3

The basic meaning of bebaioo is “standing firm on the feet, steadfast,” or “maintaining firmness or solidarity.” It stresses certainty or established character of the subject. In both the Greek and Jewish world, the word also had a legal sense. Wuest says, “It is the legal guarantee, obtained by the buyer to the seller, to be gone back upon should a third party claim the thing.”

In the New Testament, the verb appears 8 times, and it usually speaks of the confirmed nature of the Word and God’s promises, and of believers being firmly established in the faith. In several instances, “confirm” is the usual translation: Mark 16:20, Romans 15:8, 1 Corinthians 1:6 and 8 (denoting the establishment and assurance known in Christ), and Hebrews 2:3. Variations in the translations occur in 2 Corinthians 1:21, “He Who establishes us with you in Christ,” Colossians 2:7, “having been established in your faith” (the assuring took place as a rooting and grounding in Christ), and Hebrews 13:9, “good for the heart to be strengthened by grace.”

The adjective form is also found 8 times, with more variety in the translation. In Romans 4:16, the “promise will be guaranteed”; 2 Corinthians 1:7, “our hope is firmly grounded”; Hebrews 3:14 “firm until the end”; 6:19, “a hope sure and steadfast” (this speaks of something which does not break down under the weight of that which steps on it); 9:17, “a covenant is valid”; 2 Peter 1:10, “diligent to make certain about His calling” (in the legal sense); 2 Peter 1:19, “we have the prophetic word made more sure.”

In HEBREWS 2:2,3, both the adjective and verb are used together, “For if the word spoken through angels proved unalterable, ... salvation ... was confirmed to us by those who heard.” The Gospel was securely founded in divine holiness and was confirmed by ear- and eye-witnesses, the apostles who confessed the truth of the Word.


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