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Greek Thoughts

MENO* - Part 7 - εχηγεομαι (Strong's #1834)
To remain, to abide, to stay

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Please note that all Biblical quotes, in this and all other lessons posted to Greek Thoughts, are from The Literal English Translation of the Bible produced by BTE Ministries - The Bible Translation and Exegesis Institute of America.

This week we are in the seventh part of our study of the word μὲνω (pronounced Meno – Strong's #3306- to remain, to abide, to stay). We are establishing its meaning through an examination of its many uses in Scripture. So far our study has helped us understand that the word denotes a permanency of something/someone remaining or abiding in something/someone else. In previous parts of this study, we have established the following truths:

Relationship with the Lord
The non-believer remains in darkness while the Lord abides with the believer (John 12:46; 6:56; 15:4-7).

Relationship with the Spirit of God
The Comforter is to remain with the disciples of the Lord forever and the abiding Spirit of God produces fruit within their lives (John 14:16; John 15:4).

Relationship with the Word of God
The Word of God remains forever. The Word of God is not abiding in non-believers; but, in contrast, the genuine believer is remaining in the Word of God (1 Peter 1:23-25; John 5:38; 8:31).

Relationship with the Body of Christ
The ones who are antichrist will not remain with the Body of Christ, but those who belong to Christ cannot leave because of the anointing abiding in them (1 John 2:19; 2:27).

Relationship of Every Person to Sin
The one practicing sin is from the devil. Every one who has been born of God does not practice sin because God's seed is abiding in him (1 John 3:8-9).

Last week, from 1 John 3:4-9, we saw that the permanency denoted by μὲνω, as used in the Greek New Testament, is important in describing the relationship between every person and sin. This week we focus on the basic principle behind μὲνω, which establishes a person as either abiding in Christ or not abiding in Christ.

1 John 3:23-24
23) And this is His commandment, in order that we should believe the name of His Son Jesus Christ, and we should love one another, according as He gave commandment to us.

24)
And the one keeping His commandments is abiding (μὲνω) in Him and He in him; and in this we know that He is abiding (μὲνω) in us, from the Spirit whom He gave to us.

The Result of Abiding in Christ

In verse 23, commandments are given: that we should believe the name of His Son Jesus Christ, and we should love one another. According to verse 24, the one who is abiding in the Lord and the Lord in him, is keeping these commandments.
The Greek word translated "keeping" is τηρὲω (pronounced Tayreo - Strong's #5083), which means "to guard, to watch." Τηρὲω represents a mental attitude of guarding something from an external attack. In verse 24, τηρὲω is in the present active participial form. This form describes a person who presently and constantly is having a lifestyle of guarding the observance of the Lord's commands, (those mentioned in verse 23). And, according to verse 24, the life-style of keeping God's commands is the result of the Spirit of God abiding within a person.

The Source of the Position of Abiding in Christ

The source enabling believers to abide in Christ is revealed at the end of verse 24. John says, "We know that He is abiding (μὲνω) in us, from the Spirit whom He gave to us." John clarifies this even further in 1 John 4:13, "In this we know that we are abiding (μὲνω) in Him, and He in us, because He has given to us from His Spirit." Together, these verses tell us that once the Spirit of God indwells a believer, that person is then abiding in the Lord and the Lord is abiding in him/her. This indwelling establishes the believer in a position of abiding in Christ and of Christ abiding in the believer. It is the indwelling Spirit of God who produces, within each believer, the lifestyle of guarding the commandments of the Lord.

Throughout Church history, many false doctrines have circulated through the Body of Christ. There is a system of false teaching circulating today that is based on mental training. This system states that in order to abide and remain in the Lord, one must practice certain mental exercises to keep one's mind on the Lord and His Word. This teaching also holds that the one who is not thinking about the Lord and His Word is a person who is no longer abiding or remaining in the Lord. The Bible, however, clearly teaches that our relationship with Jesus Christ is not mental, but spiritual. The principle that governs whether one is abiding in the Lord or not is the indwelling presence of the Spirit of God. Once a person has experienced a spiritual birth by receiving Christ, that person is then abiding and remaining in the Lord. This position, or condition, can never change; because the Spirit of God lives within the spirits of His people forever. As we have seen from previous studies in this series, one's mind can wander, but it is the power of God's Spirit that keeps a believer abiding in Christ.

Next week we will continue this study of μὲνω from I John, Chapter 3, focusing on the love of the Lord remaining or abiding in His people.

*MENO is the English font spelling of the Greek word μὲνω.


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Meet the Author
Bill Klein has been a pastor, counselor, and educator for the past 41 years. He has had extensive training and education in biblical languages, and has authored a Biblical Greek course.
He is currently serving as Professor of Biblical Greek at Master's Graduate School of Divinity, and president of BTE Ministries - The Bible Translation and Exegesis Institute of America, a non-profit organization located in California that provides Bible study tapes and Greek study materials through their website BTEMinistries.org.

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