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Holman Bible Dictionary


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To disown or disassociate oneself from someone or to dispute that an assertion (Mark 14:70 ) or event (Acts 4:16 ) is true. The Old Testament speaks of disassociating oneself from God (Joshua 24:27 ; Proverbs 30:9 ). Peter's denial of Jesus (Matthew 26:34 ,Matthew 26:34,26:69-75 ; Mark 14:30 ,Mark 14:30,14:66-72 ; Luke 22:34 ,Luke 22:34,22:56-62 ) should be understood in this sense, since Peter three times disassociated himself from Jesus, claiming not to be one of His group. Fear of death or persecution leads some to deny, that is, disassociate themselves from Jesus (Matthew 10:33 ; Mark 8:38 ; Luke 12:9 ; 2 Timothy 2:12 ), resulting in Jesus' disassociation from them at the judgment. It is possible that 2 Peter 2:1 and Jude 1:4 should be understood in this sense as well. To deny oneself is a special case in which a person disassociates oneself from self interest to serve a higher cause. Here the idea of denial is paralleled by the picture of taking up Jesus' cross and following Him ( Matthew 16:24 ; Mark 8:34 ; Luke 9:23 ).

John the Baptist denied or disputed the assertion that he was the Christ (John 1:19-20 ). The “antichrists” of 1 John 2:22 disputed the teaching that Jesus is the Christ. Possibly 2 Peter 2:1 and Jude 1:4 are to be understood in this sense.

Copyright Statement
These dictionary topics are from the Holman Bible Dictionary, published by Broadman & Holman, 1991. All rights reserved. Used by permission of Broadman & Holman.

Bibliography Information
Butler, Trent C. Editor. Entry for 'Deny'. Holman Bible Dictionary. 1991.

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