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Sixth Edition, 1915
By Dr. John Thomas (first edition written 1861)



Chapter 1

Section 3 Subsection 1



PAGE 119


In the rendering of the original before us I have not translated the word ekklesiai, but simply transferred it. It is generally rendered churches; but this word does not express the ideas of ecclesia. Church is a corruption of !greek! kuriake, which signifies "pertaining to a lord."

The Anglo-Saxons took the first and last syllables of the Greek word, as kur-ke, which they spelled Circe; but which is more obviously shown in the Scotch kirke; both of which are equivalent to the modern English Chur-ch. "Something pertaining to a lord" is the etymological signification of the word; and although, in a certain sense, an ecclesia is something pertaining to a lord, and that lord the Lord of heaven and earth, yet the ideas of property and lordship are not contained in the word ecclesia. This is one reason why in this exposition of the Apocalypse we reject the word church as the representative of ecclesia.

Another reason is, that ideas are conventionally associated with the word which are altogether unscriptural. Ecclesia never signifies in the Bible "the place which Christians consecrate to the worship of God;" nor does it signify such collective bodies of "professors of religion" as pass current for Christians in and with the world, under the various "names and denominations" of "Christendom." These, and many other ideas associated with the word church, such as churchman, church-warden, church-attire, churchyard, churching of women, and all such papistical foolishness, are altogether foreign from the scriptural use of ecclesia.

PAGE 120

In order, therefore, to get quit of all the rubbish we exclude church from our apocalyptic vocabulary, and hold on to the word used by the apostles. We have therefore transferred it in our rendering without translation.

Still, as an expounder of the word of truth, it is our duty to make the word ecclesia perfectly intelligible to the unlearned reader; for we write principally for the benefit of such.

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