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Bible Encyclopedias

Kitto's Popular Cyclopedia of Biblial Literature


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This word, in its general sense, denotes one skilled in the law, as in . When, therefore, one is called a lawyer, this is understood with reference to the laws of the land in which he lived or to which he belonged. Hence among the Jews a lawyer was one versed in the laws of Moses, which he taught in the schools and synagogues (; ). The same person who is called 'a lawyer' in these texts, is in the parallel passage () called a scribe; whence it has been inferred that the functions of the lawyers and the scribes were identical. The individual may have been both a lawyer and a scribe; but it does not thence follow that all lawyers were scribes. Some suppose, however, that the 'scribes' were the public expounders of the law, while the 'lawyers' were the private expounders and teachers of it. But this is a mere conjecture; and nothing more is really known than that the 'lawyers' were expounders of the law, whether publicly or privately, or both.





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Bibliography Information
Kitto, John, ed. Entry for 'Lawyer'. "Kitto's Popular Cyclopedia of Biblial Literature".

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