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Vine's Expository Dictionary of NT Words


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1: πύλη
(Strong's #4439 — Noun Feminine — pule — poo'-lay )

is used (a) literally, for a larger sort of "gate," in the wall either of a city or palace or temple, Luke 7:12 , of Nain (burying places were outside the "gates" of cities); Acts 3:10 ; 9:24 ; 12:10 ; Hebrews 13:12 ; (b) metaphorically, of the "gates" at the entrances of the ways leading to life and to destruction, Matthew 7:13,14 ; some mss. have pule, for thura, "a door," in Luke 13:24 (see the RV); of the "gates" of Hades, Matthew 16:18 , than which nothing was regarded as stronger. The importance and strength of "gates" made them viewed as synonymous with power. By metonymy, the "gates" stood for those who held government and administered justice there.

2: πυλών
(Strong's #4440 — Noun Masculine — pulon — poo-lone' )

akin to No. 1, primarily signifies "a porch or vestibule," e.g., Matthew 26:71 ; Luke 16:20 ; Acts 10:17 ; 12:13,14 ; then, the "gateway" or "gate tower" of a walled town, Acts 14:13 ; Revelation 21:12,13,15,21,25 ; 22:14 .

Notes: (1) In Acts 3:2 thura denotes, not a "gate," but a "door," RV. See DOOR. (2) Probatikos, signifying "of, or belonging to, sheep," denotes a sheep "gate" in John 5:2 , RV, and AV marg. (3) The conjectural emendation which suggests the idea of "floods" for "gates" in Matthew 16:18 is not sufficiently substantiated to be accepted.

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Bibliography Information
Vines, W. E., M. A. Entry for 'Gate'. Vine's Expository Dictionary of NT Words. 1940.

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