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Greek Thoughts

MENO* - Part 8 - εχηγεομαι (Strong's #1834)
To remain, to abide, to stay

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[1] [2] [3] [4] [5] [6] [7] [8] [9] [10] [11]
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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 continue to examine the multiple uses in Scripture of the word μὲνω (pronounced meno – Strong's #3306- to remain, to abide, to stay). 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 looking at various uses of μὲνω, 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).

Relationship with Christ Himself
We know that we are abiding in Him from the Spirit whom He has given to us (1 John 3:24; 1 John 4:13).

This week we focus on μὲνω as it is used in 1 John 3:10-14 to present the evidence of love abiding (μὲνω) in the lives of genuine believers.

1 John 3:10-14

10)
In this the children of God and the children of the devil are revealed; everyone not practicing righteousness is not from God; also the one not loving his brother.F1

John begins his presentation of the evidence that a person does not belong to Christ by giving two ways in which a child of the devil is revealed. First he states, "Everyone who is not practicing righteousness is not from God." He has previously established, in verse 7, that the one practicing righteousness is righteous, "…according as that One is righteous." Therefore, a person is said to be practicing righteousness because the righteous One, Jesus Christ, is living within him/her. Consequently, as our verse of study explains, the person who is not practicing righteousness is not from God, because that person does not have the righteous One living inside him/her.

The second evidence of a person who does not belong to Christ is found in the last part of verse 10, "…also the one not loving his brother." The word translated "loving" is the present participial form of ἀγαπὰω (pronounced Agapao - Strong's #25). The participial form represents a habit of life or lifestyle. Therefore, just as it is with the practice of righteousness, loving one's brother is, for a believer, a continuous habit of life. John is teaching that a person is not from God if he/she is not practicing righteousness and is not loving his/her brother continually. The Greek word translated "from" is the preposition ἐκ (pronounced Ek - Strong's #1537). ̓Εκ expresses coming out of something as a source; so this verse tells us that a person is not from out of God as a source, if he/she is not practicing righteousness and is not continually loving his/her brother.

11)
Because this is the message which you heard from the beginning, in order that we should love one another,

In verse 11, John gives the reason for his statements in verse 10: the commandment of love has been heard from the beginning. The next clause is not the actual commandment, but is the purpose for the commandment: "…in order that we should love one another." Many of the verses in the Bible that teach on love have this purpose clause in them and are worded this way for a reason. To understand why this purpose clause accompanies the topic of love, we first have to examine the commandment on love given by Jesus, as recorded in Matthew 22:34-40.

Matthew 22:34-40

34)
but after the Pharisees heard that he silenced the Sadducees, they gathered together.
35) And one from them, a lawyer, questioned him, by testing him and saying,

36)
"Teacher, which is the great commandment in the Law?"

37)
And Jesus said to him, "You will love the Lord your God in your whole heart, and in your whole soul, and in your whole mind."

38)
"This is the first and great commandment.

39)
"And the second is like to it: 'You will love your neighbor as yourself.'

40)
"In these two Commandments the whole law and the prophets are hanging."

In presenting the first great commandment, Jesus quotes from Deuteronomy 6:5, where God promises that when He sends His Spirit upon His people, they will love Him. Notice that Jesus accurately quoted the Deuteronomy text by giving the command as a statement of fact, not a challenge to obey. The command states: "You will love the Lord your God..." The second command is like to it: "You will love your neighbor..." which is a quote from Leviticus 19:18.

The New Testament reveals additional information about love, making the understanding of it more complete. In 1 John 4:8 we read, "The one not loving did not know God, because God is love." Again the word "loving" is in the present participial form expressing habit of life or lifestyle. This states that the one not continually loving as a lifestyle or habit of life did not know God, "because God is love." The Bible states that love is not a human expression or action, but rather is the nature of God Himself. Galatians 5:22 tells us that Agape love is a fruit produced by God's Spirit. God is love and His love is produced in believers by the Holy Spirit. This is why the teachings on love in the New Testament have the purpose clause with them: because when the Spirit of God indwells a believer, His Spirit will be producing God's love; because God promised that when He sent His Spirit to indwell a person, that person "will love the Lord your God " and "will love his neighbor." The purpose clause reveals the reason God gave the command that we will love the Lord our God and will love our neighbor, "in order that we should love one another."

12)
not according as Cain was from the evil one and killed his brother. And on account of what did he kill him? Because his works were evil, but the things of his brother were righteous.

In this verse, John gives an example of a person who did not have the love of God dwelling in him. Cain killed his brother, because he was from the evil one and his works were evil. His brother's works, on the other hand, were righteous (meaning right before God).

13)
Do not marvel, my brothers, if the world is hating you.

In this example, John tells those who belong to Christ that they should not marvel over the fact that the world is hating them. Those who do not belong to Christ will hate those who do believe in Christ.

14)
We know that we have passed from out of death into life because we are loving the brothers. The one not loving the brother is abiding (μὲνω) in death.

Notice the evidence given that one has passed from death into life: "…because we are loving the brothers." The term "we are loving" is a statement of fact and is evidence that one has experienced the new birth in Christ, thereby passing from death into life. The person not loving (again, another present participle expressing lifestyle or habit of life) the brother is abiding in death. The Greek word for "abiding" is our word of study, μὲνω. It is used here in the present active indicative form, which shows a present and continuous condition.

In John's writings, love is not presented as a requirement for Christians to fulfill, but rather as evidence that one has experienced a spiritual birth from out of the Spirit of God. When God's Spirit dwells within a believer, the believer will love God and his neighbor. The evidence of this love in a person's life shows that he/she has passed from death into life. Conversely, the person who does not have the love of God in him is presently and continuously abiding in death.

Next week we will again study μὲνω from I John, Chapter 3, continuing to focus on the love of the Lord remaining or abiding in His people.

--

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

F1: The term brother in John's text is referring to one born from God. 1 John 5:1 states, "Everyone loving the One who has given birth is also loving the one who has been born from Him." The evidence that one has been born from God is love for God, who gives birth, and
love for those who have been born from God.


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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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