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Bible Encyclopedias

Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature


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(usually עָנָה , anah', ἀποκρίνομαι ) has other significations in Scripture besides the common one in the sense of reply.

1. Moses having composed a thanksgiving after the passage of the Red Sea, Miriam, it is said, "answered;" meaning that Moses with the men on one side, and Miriam with the women on the other side, sung the same song, as it were, in two choruses or divisions; of which one "answered" the other (Exodus 15:21). So also 1 Samuel 29:5, where they sung in distinct choruses; comp. Numbers 21:17.

2. This word is likewise taken for to accuse, or to defend judicially

(Genesis 30:33; Deuteronomy 31:21; Hosea 5:5).

3. To "answer" is likewise taken in a bad sense, as when it is said that a son answers his father insolently, or a servant his master (John 18:22; Romans 9:20; 2 Corinthians 1:9).

4. To "aswer" is also used in Scripture for the commencement of a discourse, when no reply to any question or objection is intended. This mode of speaking is often used by the Evangelists: "And Jesus answered and said." his a Hebrew idiom (Job 3:2; Song of Solomon 2:10; Zechariah 3:4; Zechariah 4:11-12; Matthew 11:25; Matthew 12:38; Matthew 17:4; Mark 9:5; Luke 7:40). (See AFFIRMATIVE).

ANSWER OF A GOOD CONSCIENCE (συνειδήσεως ἀγαθῆς ἐπερώτημα ), a phrase occurring 1 Peter 3:21, very variously interpreted, but apparently signifying simply the ability to address God in prayer (as if a response to His searching of the heart) with a conscience free from a sense of guilt, or the seeking after Him with a pure conscience (see Alford, in loc.). (See CONSCIENCE).

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Bibliography Information
McClintock, John. Strong, James. Entry for 'Answer'. Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature. Harper & Brothers. New York. 1870.

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