Tuesday, April 3, 2007


Greek Word Pronunciation: meta-BAI-no
Strong's Number: 3327
Goodrich/Kohlenberger Number: 3553
Key Verse: “He who hears My word and believes Him who sent Me, ... has passed out of death into life.” -- John 5:24

Metabaino is a compound verb comprised of meta, signifying “change,” and baino, “to go.” The meaning is “to move from one place to another,” especially “to change one’s dwelling.”

In the New Testament, the word occurs 11 times. In 8 of those times, it is used in the topographical sense of departing or leaving to go from one place to another (Matthew 8:34, 11:1, 12:9, 15:29, John 7:3, and Acts 18:7). In Matthew 17:20, Jesus told the disciples about having faith the size of the mustard seed, “you will say to the mountain, ‘Move from here to there’…” In Luke 10:7, Jesus instructed the disciples “do not keep moving from house to house.”

In John’s books, this word is used metaphorically. In John 13:1, Jesus knew that His hour had come and “that He would depart out of this world to the Father.” Christ was about to move from the present world, into which He came to save sinners, and where He had met with barbarous treatment, and was to meet with more. He was going to the Father, by Whom He was sent, from Whom He came; to His God and Father, and the God and Father of all His people, to take His place in Their nature at His right hand.

JOHN 5:24 and 1 John 3:14 both make reference to believers that “have passed out of death into life.” In John 5:24, the reference is to belief in the unity of Father and Son, and in 1 John 3:14, that belief is reflected by one’s love for fellow believers. In both verses, the verb is in perfect tense, indicating that we were transferred from death to life, with the permanent result that we will always have life eternal. We pass from death to life, from the guilt of death to the right of life. This transition is made upon our believing in the Lord Jesus.

No comments: