Do you feel the oils of the Holy Spirit?
I do. All the time.
When you awaken or even when you are in your bed or out and about do you feel the oils of the Spirit all round you?
I do, all the time.
Simple deduction, the prayers of the saints.
Do you find that the power of God is far too much for this earthly body?
I do, at times.
Do you crave for the spiritual things of God but not the things of this world?
Is it always the things of God that you seek but not the things of this world?
Do you feel that God created you a woman and it’s the most wonderful person to be?
Me. Do you just love your life so much cos God is good all the time?
Is life great and happiness is what God intended for every single person here?
I was most confused as a twenty-year old when I read about faith, hope and love. When I was little, it read, faith, hope and charity. There was no love. There was charity. Was it so because we were to be charitable to everyone, especially those who were poor. For the life of me, I found this so hard to grasp. One fine day, the Holy Spirit filled me, so much so that He poured out of me and all I could feel was to love everyone. And yet, I still could not grasp, charity verses love. How it was connected. How it is. I was most confused for a very very long time. I could not figure this out at all. I felt indeed loved by God and my parents and friends and husband. But what it really all meant took me years to grasp as when I was little it was charity and I thought that the translation was wrong in the KJV. Whether it had been translated wrong. I was in my early twenties. I love to think about the things of God. Ever since the days of my mere childhood.
Prophesy. I’ve been encouraged to prophesy and never stop until the LORD ends it all.
We prayed in our prayer group yesterday. We prayed about finishing the race. For our children to finish the race. And finish good. Finish well. It is taught to us that it is not how we begin or where we are at present but it is how we finish that determines who we are. We prayed for our children. Us women.
When I was younger I used to get really frustrated about having to be among the women. My place in the great picture of things. When I bowled it was the men I used to be asked to watch and try to imitate as best of my ability as a woman for if I could just do a bit of what they can do then I may have a chance of beating all the women. Our limited physique. Women are complicated and moody but men are down to earth and just keep to the facts. Easy. I have got past my growth patch in this area and quite comfortable most of the time, I would say not completely but most of the time am living with it. hahahahahahahaha This is my journal. I can say what I want. With limitations of course. In Daniel it says that those who know their God will do great exploits. What a glorious verse. To add, which should have been put before this verse is, Daniel purposed not to defile himself. What a great verse right. To keep close to our hearts. Not to defile ourselves. I hardly ever go into the dark areas. When my eldest grandson was young. Three or no, four, he would say that the darkness was there and I would ask him to go to the light. Jesus is the light and he would say that Jesus is the Lion of Judah. It just takes a change of direction. A turning. Like the ‘as white as snow’ in Isaiah. Like 2 Chronicles 7:14, if .. turn …. wicked ways.
I’m old school. Really. I was brought up a devout Catholic. I believe women have their place in the great picture of things. Women are to be in the home. I am an old traditionalist. This is my heart. When I was a teenager there was the burn the bra movement. I thought, crazy. What were they fighting for. I have been a housewife all my life. An at-home mum. I’m still at home. I’m so comfortable at home. I went into our church office the other week and Katrina was at her desk. I thought to myself that there was no way I could do it. Like her. Administration. My husband is very good at this. But me. Hopeless. Now, the things of the Spirit, my kind of stuff.
Have you ever sought to see the Spirit?
I have. Think about it. We are spirit beings. Supernatural beings. If now you learn from the prophets and the seers, you will know we are not earthly beings.
I’m just an old woman. I live by faith in Christ Jesus.
By what I have been taught in the things of the Spirit, God moves. HE is an all-consuming fire and we just have to be the empty vessels to be used by HIM and HIM alone. No one can stop God’s move. It has been proven throughout the ages. Our God is unstoppable. HE will complete what HE has decreed before the foundations of the earth. HE knows all things. HE can use anything to complete HIS purpose for HIS own glory.
And when you realize this as early as possible in the great picture of things the easier life is to be submissive to the LORD.
I thought was a misprint in the bible.
Indeed, we have the mind of Christ.
After reading ‘Little Kittel’ the word ‘mind’ can be replaced by the word ‘heart’.
It is below from the Septuagint. The Lexham Analytical Lexicon to the Septuagint.
Therefore we can say we have the ❤ of Christ.
O LORD JESUS, so reassuring.
Do you feel the touch of the walls of the new Jerusalem?
Our God a consuming fire.
Think Little Kittel can lead us to more insight of the word ‘mind’ in the Exergetical Guide of my Logos Bible.
1. Linguistic Data. The verb noéō means “to direct one’s mind to.” At first it is used in the broad sense “to perceive,” but later it means only “to perceive mentally” and then “to think,” “to understand,” “to intend,” and “to know” as a function of the mind (noús). In the LXX the organ of noeín is often the heart (kardía), but the sphere of noeín is always mental. In the NT the verb has such senses as “to note,” “to grasp,” “to recognize,” “to understand,” and “to imagine.”
2. Biblical Theology. Jn. 12:40 takes the biblical view that the heart is the center of noeín. Knowledge has religious and moral significance. Rom. 1:20 states that God’s power and majesty may be apprehended in his works. From visible things we can and should work back (in an intellectual process) to the invisible reality of the Creator. We are thus responsible when we fail to do so. Heb. 11:3 argues that by faith we do in fact perceive that the universe is ordered by God’s word. To acknowledge that God’s creative will is the basis of all reality is to think in terms of faith. Faith sees that the invisible is the true reality, but this reality is the reality of salvation. Hence knowledge of God as Creator is rooted in the knowledge of God as Savior.
A. The Meaning of the Term.
1. The original meaning of noús is “(inner) sense directed on an object,” and from this come such meanings as “sensation,” “power of perception,” and “mode of thought.” The main nuances are “mind,” “insight,” “understanding,” “judgment,” and “meaning.”
2. The word is rare in the LXX, since kardía is there the main organ of understanding. The usual meaning in the Apocrypha is “mind” or “disposition.”
3. The term is imprecise in postbiblical Jewish works, having such senses as “moral nature,” “mode of thought,” and “power of spiritual perception.”
B. The Term noús in Greek Philosophy and Religion. The transition to philosophy gives the term noús more pregnancy but in so doing restricts it. The noús is now the “reason” or “spirit” with a more theoretical orientation. In Anaxagoras noús is the cosmic reason that orders the universe and links perception and creativity. Plato thinks the noús is the most excellent part of us. As it rules the world, so it controls moral action. With truth, it is the product of the marriage of humanity with pure being. Aristotle sees in the noús our characteristic enérgeia. Theoretical noús is the power of logical thought and practical noús sets goals for the will. The noús is immortal and comes into the body from outside. Yet this applies only to the active, not the passive or potential noús. In Zeno God is cosmic reason, in Epictetus God’s being is moús, and in Marcus Aurelius the noús is our daímōn. Philo uses noús for reason (as distinct from pneúma as spirit), but while noús is the best in us, it is earthly and can attain to truth only as divinely instructed. The noús of the first man far surpasses ours. When the noús serves God purely, it is divine and rises up to heaven in an initiation into the divine mysteries. In ecstasy, it is replaced by the pneúma. God himself is noús in the deepest sense. In contrast, the human noús is limited, but because cosmic noús has created the universe, it has the promise that it will finally come to know God and itself. In Plotinus the noús is the thinking substance and the supreme hypostasis in the intelligible realm. It works in the lesser suprasensual and sensual spheres and is in us the chief force alien to the world of sense. In the Hermetic writings God is noús in the supreme sense and then there is a second noús. The divine noús is a unique human property that brings knowledge and insight, although in some texts it seems to belong only to the righteous. In Gnosticism and magic noús is hypostatized as the god Noús or as an emanation among the aeons. The aeon Noús still plays a part in Manicheanism.
C. noús in the NT.
a. Used only by Paul (apart from Lk. 24:45; Rev. 13:18; 17:9), noús is imprecise in the NT, though never equated with pneúma or psychḗ. It first means “mind” or “disposition” in the sense of inner orientation or moral attitude (cf. Rom. 1:28; Eph. 4:17; Col. 2:18; 1 Tim. 6:5; Tit. 1:15). In the disposition of the believer there should be constant renewal (Rom. 12:2). Unity is achieved when members of the community are of the same noús (1 Cor. 1:10).
b. A second sense is “practical reason,” i.e., the moral consciousness that determines will and action. Thus in Rom. 7:23 the noús affirms the law to be God’s, and in 7:25 Paul serves this law with his noús.
c. The word then means “understanding”; in this sense it is the faculty of knowledge whether as state or act. Thus the noús understands the OT in Lk. 24:45 and penetrates secrets in Rev. 13:18; 17:9. God’s peace grants a liberation far beyond our care-ridden understanding (Phil. 4:7). The noús produces intelligible words and clear thoughts in 1 Cor. 14:14–15, 19. It commands a sure power of judgment when faced with extravagant ideas (2 Th. 2:2).
d. A final sense is “thought,” “judgment,” or “resolve.” We are to be established in our own judgment (Rom. 14:5). God’s saving resolve answers the question put in Rom. 9–11 (11:34). This is also the meaning in the first occurrence in 1 Cor. 2:16 (“the mind of the Lord”); in the second occurrence (“the mind of Christ”) the sense is more that of disposition (a.).
D. noús in the Oldest Christian Literature after the NT. The word is rare and imprecise in the apostolic fathers, but Gnostics find in Christ the first-begotten Noús, the Apologists think God and Christ are by nature noús and may be known only by noús, and Clement of Alexandria suggests that God is noús, that Christ is the Son of noús, that the word illumines the soul as it pierces to the depths of the noús, and that the human noús, when purified, can in some sense receive God’s power. Thus philosophical ideas give to the use of noús a thrust that it does not have in the NT itself.
nóēma. This word denotes the result of the activity of noús, i.e., “what is thought,” “thought,” “concept,” “point,” “resolve,” or “plan.” Only Paul uses it in the NT, and always in a bad sense (except in Phil. 4:7). Thus, in the plural, it means corrupt thoughts in 2 Cor. 3:14; 4:4; 11:3, the devices of Satan in 2 Cor. 2:11, and opposing thoughts that are captured and brought into Christ’s service in 2 Cor. 10:5. In Phil. 4:7 (also plural) the reference is to thoughts that proceed from the hearts of believers.anóētos. In the rare passive this word means “unthought of,” “unsuspected,” “unintelligible,” or “inconceivable,” and in the more common active it means “unwise,” “irrational,” or “foolish,” with a moral as well as an intellectual nuance. In Rom. 1:14 the plural is used for those whose power of thought is undeveloped. Elsewhere in the NT the word involves an adverse moral or religious judgment (Gal. 3:1; Tit. 2:3). In 1 Tim. 6:9 the many desires that assail the rich are anóētoi because they are morally suspect as well as making no sense or having no substance.
ánoia. This word means “unreason” or “folly,” and has a moral slant. In Lk. 6:11 a mad fury is denoted. 2 Tim. 3:9 refers to the dreadful folly of new and old errors.
dysnóētos. This word means “something that is hard to understand.” 2 Pet. 3:16 refers to such things in Paul’s epistles; the ignorant and unstable twist them. Possibly in view are what Paul says about freedom, about flesh and spirit, or about eschatology.
1. Use outside the NT. This common word for “thought” has such varied senses as (1) thought as a function, (2) the power of thought, the thinking consciousness, (3) the way of thought, (4) the result of thought, e.g., thought, idea, opinion, or judgment, (5) resolve or intention, and (6) the meaning of words or statements. The LXX uses it as an equivalent of kardía, and the usage is much the same in other Jewish works.
2. NT Usage. Though not common, diánoia occurs in most NT books in the popular sense, with some LXX influence. In the Synoptics and Hebrews the main sense is “mind” or “understanding” (cf. Mk. 12:30; Heb. 8:10; 10:16; an arrogant disposition in Lk. 1:51). In Eph. 4:18 the defect of noús is traced back to a defect of diánoia (moral and spiritual understanding). In Col. 1:21 the pre-Christian mode of thinking is in view, and the impulses of the will are meant in the plural in Eph. 2:3, i.e., evil thoughts or inclinations. The metaphor of 1 Pet. 1:13 is a summons to readiness of mind and soul, while in 2 Pet. 3:1 a pure disposition is meant. The only instance in the Johannine writings is in 1 Jn. 5:20, where the reference is not to specific knowledge, nor to a natural disposition, but to thinking (given by the Son of God) that is oriented to God. In the apostolic fathers we find a use similar to that of the NT, e.g., for faculty of thought or for mind (evil thoughts in 1 Clem. 39.1). The word is less common than noús and kardía in the Apologists, but Clement of Alexandria uses it in all the current Greek senses.
dianóēma. This word denotes the result of dianoeísthai, namely, “thought,” “opinion,” “resolve,” “judgment.” The only NT instance is in Lk. 11:17 where, in a bad sense, it is used for the hostile reservations regarding Jesus and his power.
l. Use outside the NT. This word means “what takes place in the noús,” i.e., “deliberation.” It can then mean “what arises in the noús,” and it is used in philosophy for “idea” or “concept.” Thus in Stoicism all thought rests on empirical énnoiai (concepts). Such concepts come by experience or observation. They are common to all people, but not innate. They include notions of God, immortality, providence, and good and evil. In the LXX énnoia occurs often in Proverbs for “insight,” “perception,” “consideration,” etc. (cf. 1:4; 3:21; 4:1; 16:22; 18:15; 23:4). In the plural it denotes ethical thoughts in 23:19. Elsewhere in Jewish works the term is rare. Philo can use it in the everyday sense, but usually for him it denotes the thoughts with which reason fructifies the noús. In Gnosticism it is hypostatized as the aeon Énnoia.
2. NT Use. The term is rare in the NT and the use is popular. In Heb. 4:12 the énnoiai that God’s word discerns are morally questionable thoughts. In 1 Pet. 4:1 the truth expressed in Christ’s passion is a “thought” with which believers are to arm themselves so as to have no more dealings with sin (cf. Rom. 6:2ff.).
eunoéō, eúnoia. eunoéō means “to be well-disposed to,” “to meet halfway,” and eúnoia means “goodwill.” In Mt. 5:25–26 the advice to the debtor is to meet his adversary halfway, i.e., to come to an arrangement with him. In the light of the last judgment, disciples should be conciliatory with a view to settling wrongs. In Eph. 6:7 the admonition that slaves should serve with eúnoia (goodwill) corresponds to a general view of antiquity but is given a new basis, namely, that the service is now rendered to the Lord. Mart. Pol. 17.3 transfers the loyalty or self-sacrifice of subjects directly to the relation between Christians and Christ.
katanoéō. This compound intensifies the simple noéō; it means “to immerse oneself in.” This may be in the field of sensory perception, but critical examination is also denoted, and in literary Greek the idea is that of apprehension by pondering or studying. In the NT visual perception is usually the point, e.g., scrutiny of an object (Jms. 1:23–24), or the observation of facts or processes (Lk. 12:24, 27; Rom. 4:19; Acts 7:31–32). Sensory contemplation may lead to intellectual apprehension, and this is indicated in Lk. 20:23, where Jesus takes note of the craftiness of his questioners. In Hebrews Christians are to focus on the moral example of Christ (3:1–2) or to consider how they can stir up one another to loving actions that will demonstrate their faith (10:24).
A. Greek Usage.
1. metanoéō. (1) This word, which is fairly rare, has first the sense “to note after or late” (often with the sense “too late”). (2) It then means “to change one’s noús,” i.e., opinion, feelings, or purpose. (3) If it is perceived that the former noús was wrong, it then takes on the sense “to regret,” “to rue,” in various constructions, and often with an ethical nuance.
2. metánoia. (1) The noun, too, can mean “later knowledge” or “subsequent emendation.” (2) More commonly it denotes “change of noús,” whether in feelings, will, or thought. (3) It then means “remorse” or “regret” if there is dissatisfaction with the previous noús and the pain etc. it might have caused.
3. Historical Significance of the Date. At first the two words bear a purely intellectual sense. When the idea of change of noús establishes itself, emotional and volitional elements come in, but the change is not necessarily ethical; it may be from good to bad. Only when the idea of regret is present is a moral component plainly included, and even now there is no total change in life’s direction, for the regret is only for a specific act or attitude, not for a whole way of life. Philosophers use the terms mainly in the intellectual sense, though not without a moral nuance. Fools become wise when they reconsider, but the wise are above metánoia, since it would pillory them as the victims of error and show them to be lacking in inner harmony. The Greek world offers no true linguistic or material basis for the NT understanding of metanoéō and metánoia as conversion. [J. BEHM, IV, 948–80]
B. Repentance and Conversion in the OT.
1. Cultic and Ritual Forms of Penitence.
(1) The Occasion and Development of Penitential Observances. Although the OT has no special terms for repentance, the concept is present in cultic and prophetic forms. The cultic forms develop out of national emergencies, which are traced to the wrath of God even when no specific offenses are perceived. The fast that is used as an occasion for accusing and robbing Naboth is an example, although often common afflictions will not be attributed to the sins of individuals but to public guilt. As Joel portrays it, the priests summon to the fast, the people assembles on the blast of the ram’s horn, and there is common lamentation (Joel 2:15ff.).
(2) External Forms. Along with fasting, sackcloth and ashes are penitential forms. We also read of scratching (Hos. 7:14) and pouring out water (1 Sam. 7:6). Cattle may also fast and be garbed in sackcloth (Jon. 3:7–8; cf. Esth. 4:16).
(3) Liturgies. Calling on God with the confession of sin is also a feature in the fast. Fixed liturgies develop to this end (Hos. 6:1ff.; Jer. 3:21ff.; Neh. 9; Dt. 9:4ff.). Neh. 1:5ff. contains a strong sense of sin, but later we also find protestations of innocence (cf. Ps. 44). No reference is made to offerings in this connection, but one may perhaps infer from Mic. 6:6–7 that they would be made. Indeed, it has been suggested that the human sacrifices which the prophets condemned might be made on such occasions.
(4) Days of Penitence. General days of penitence seem to have been common in preexilic times (1 Kgs. 8:33ff.). During the exile fasts are established for the fall of Jerusalem. Defeats, droughts, famines, fires, etc. are the reasons for these special days.
(5) Prophetic Criticism of Cultic and Ritual Penitence. Since cultic forms might become purely external, they are subject to prophetic criticism. Thus Amos complains that the people does not truly repent (Am. 4:6ff.) even though it most likely engages in cultic practices. Hos. 6:1ff. depicts the people doing outward service, but in 6:4ff. God sees no serious penitence in it, for it has no moral force. Zechariah raises again the ancient prophetic cry for an inner fasting that will issue in righteousness (7:5ff.). Joel adds to the summons to weeping a call for the rending of the heart and not the garment (2:12–13). The prophets are not rejecting external forms but are insisting that serious penitence carries with it a turning from sin to righteousness. Without this the external forms might easily come to be viewed as magical ways of dealing with national disasters rather than as ways to establish a new and true relationship with God. This is why they protest against them.
2. The Prophetic Concept of Conversion. The prophets do not invent a special word for true repentance but make do with the common word for return (šûḇ ). This carries with it a sense of turning back, i.e., after relapse, but not exclusively so, for sometimes the idea is that of turning from. In general, what is meant is an about-face. The turning is mostly to God (once in Neh. 9:29 to the law), and what is turned from is evil conduct, previous conduct, violence, idols, or sin. The concept of conversion stresses positively the fact that real penitence involves a new relation to God that embraces all spheres of life and claims the will in a way that no external rites can replace. The question of standing before God is the question that really matters. All other things, relations with others, the cultus, and the state, depend on it. Implied here is a strongly personal view of sin whereby individual faults are seen to result from a wrong attitude to God, e.g., infidelity in Hosea, rebellion in Isaiah, forsaking God in Jeremiah. This wrong attitude is the more serious because of Israel’s special relationship to God as the covenant people. In line with the personal view of sin is a personal view of repentance as turning to God with all one’s being. This turning, or returning as the prophets often call it, has three facets. (1) It means obedience to the will of God, i.e, unconditional recognition of God in conduct corresponding to his will (Hos. 6:1ff.; Jer. 34:15). (2) It means trust in God in rejection of all human help and all false gods (Hos. 14:4; Jer. 3:22–23). (3) It means turning aside from everything that is ungodly. This third aspect seems to be taken for granted in the older prophets but comes to expression in Jeremiah and especially in Ezekiel (Jer. 26:3; Ezek. 18:26, etc.). The call to conversion presupposes its possibility. This aspect is less prominent in Amos, whose message is predominantly one of ineluctable judgment (7:8; 8:2). Hosea, too, appreciates the seriousness of the situation, but he believes that judgment itself will open the door to conversion, not because the latter is a human possibility, but because it is the goal of God’s direction of history (2:8–9; 3:5). Isaiah accepts the fact that conversion is a consequence of God’s own saving action, but only for a remnant, not for the whole people. Jeremiah in his many appeals seems to assume that by repentance the people may avert judgment, but he expects a comprehensive renewal only as God writes his law in the hearts of the people (31:33). In general, the prophets do not state that the people has a possibility of its own whereby it may repent and avert judgment. On the other hand, judgment is not for it a blind fate. It preserves the living quality of the relation to God and the validity of the moral order.
3. The Exilic and Postexilic Period. The later chapters of Isaiah and Ps. 51 maintain the prophetic witness with their orientation of both sin and conversion to God Is. 44:2) and their insistence on inner renewal (Ps. 51:10). Ezekiel stresses the individual aspect, accords more prominence to the forsaking of sin, gives conversion enhanced significance as a means to salvation, and counts far more on its possibility, although in the last resort he, too, sees the need for a new heart that only God can give (cf. 18:21ff.; 33:12ff.; 36:26). A stronger orientation to the law may be seen in the sins from which Malachi demands conversion (3:7–8), or in the call of Neh. 9:29 for conversion to the law (cf. the role of the Passover in 2 Chr. 30:6ff.). Yet inner repentance is still seen to be the central point (cf. Joel 2:12ff.; Jon. 3:8ff.) even if the thought is not expressed with its original grandeur and profundity. [E. WÜRTHWEIN, IV, 980–89]
C. metanoéō and metánoia in Hellenistic Jewish Literature.
1. The LXX.
(1) metanoéō. This word is rare in the LXX. It is used for “to regret” and “to change one’s mind”—with both God and man as subject. The LXX prefers epistréphō or apostréphō for religious and moral conversion, but metanoéō can have much the same sense (Jer. 8:6) when used for Heb. šûḇ. metanoéō, then, can acquire the sense of a lasting change that it does not have in the secular sphere.
(2) metánoia. The LXX does not use this word in translating the OT.
2. Other Literature.
(1) Apocrypha and Pseudepigrapha. These works have metanoéō and metánoia for conversion in the full sense (Sir. 48:15 etc.). The usage echoes the prophetic call for conversion as a gift and task from God. God himself grants it as a means whereby sinners may come to eternal life. But while a total change is the goal, there is a tendency to stress individual sins that are left and individual laws that are kept. Thus a petty legalistic zeal tends to crowd out the true concept. On the other hand, when conversion is related eschatologically to the final goal of faith and hope, it is seen in the prophetic sense as God’s gift and work for Israel.
(2) Philo. In Philo one sees the synthesis of Greek culture and Jewish religion. Philo uses the terms for “change of mind,” but he also gives them the religious nuance of religious and moral conversion, i.e., the total change of turning to God and turning from sin that affects all life and conduct. Without such conversion there is no salvation. In his depiction Philo does, of course, adopt philosophical and mystical elements, e.g., when he says that conversion fulfils the Stoic ideal, or when he shows that it brings harmony in thought and word. Yet he does not agree with the Stoics that the sage needs no metánoia, and in his total view the OT concept retains its distinctive flavor.
(3) Josephus. Like Philo, Joshus uses the terms both in the common sense and in the religious and moral sense. His statements, however, are echoes with little profundity. He attaches significance to external forms, focuses on individual vices and virtues, and relates conversion to the averting of punishment. Yet the goal of a new life stands behind the individual manifestations.
D. Conversion in Rabbinic Literature. The rabbis give linguistic expression to the OT view of conversion with their frequent use of terms for “to convert” or “conversion.” While they do not work out the theology of conversion systematically, they have an inner religious concern for the matter. They extol conversion as great, and accord it saving significance. Its gates are always open. It is a break with wicked acts and where necessary entails restitution. It comes to expression in penitential prayer. Its positive side is obedience to the law. Although God must give it, humans achieve it, partly in the form of cultic exercises. It is often repeated since there are new violations of the law. By obstinate sinning, one may forfeit it and incur final punishment. Some rabbis think that Israel’s conversion is a condition of the coming of the Messiah but others think that the time is set by God. Another hope is that the Messiah will lead all people to God by conversion. The core of the rabbinic view is much the same as that of Hellenistic Jewish teaching.
E. metanoéō and metánoia in the NT.
1. The Linguistic Understanding. The two words are most common in the Synoptics and Acts (the verb 21 times, the noun 14). Paul has the verb only once, and the noun four times. The verb occurs 12 times in Revelation, the noun three times in Hebrews and once in 2 Peter. The popular sense occurs in Lk. 17:3–4 and 2 Cor. 7:9–10 (“regret” or “remorse”). The usual meaning is “change of mind” or “conversion” with the full OT nuance. This nuance is important, for it makes a big difference whether the call of Jesus to repent is a call to total conversion or simply a call to sorrow for sin, a change of mind, or acts of restitution.
2. The Concept of Conversion.
(1) John the Baptist. Conversion is the core of the message of John, who proclaims the imminence of judgment and demands a turning to God as God is turning to us. The summons acquires new urgency inasmuch as it stands in the light of eschatological revelation. This is a once-for-all conversion, an inner change, that is required even of the righteous and must find expression in acts of love. A baptism of conversion signifies that God is at work to change our nature for the new aeon. God himself grants conversion as both gift and task; it is for us to let it be given and to authenticate it as the divine basis of a new being.
(2) Jesus. In the teaching of Jesus metanoeíte is the imperative that is implied in the indicative of the message of the kingdom. Conversion is a basic requirement that follows from the reality of the eschatological kingdom as it is present in Jesus’ person. The preaching and miracles are a call to conversion in a final and unconditional decision, in a once-for-all turning to God in total obedience (cf. Mk. 1:15; Mt. 12:39ff.; 11:20ff.; Mt. 4:17). This is the point of Jesus’ teaching even when the terms are not used. Not merely evil, but anything that might be put before God must be renounced (Mt. 5:29–30; 10:32ff., etc.). Conversion applies to all people, demanding a complete commitment that seeks forgiveness in full trust and surrender. Faith is its positive aspect (cf. Mk. 1:15). It is not a human achievement, for it involves becoming small and receptive like a child (Mt. 18:3). It is God’s gift, but as such a binding requirement. By the baptism of the Spirit Jesus imparts the divine power that creates those who are subject to the divine rule, i.e., converted people. In all its severity, then, the message is one of joy. metánoia is not law, but gospel.
(3) Primitive Christianity.
a. General. In the apostolic kerygma conversion is a total requirement. The disciples preach it in Mk. 6:12 and are directed to summon people to it in Lk. 24:47. metánoia is at the heart of their message in Acts (5:31; 8:22; 11:18, etc.). It is a basic article in Heb. 6:1. Peter’s sermon connects it with baptism (Acts 2:38). It is a turning from evil to God (8:22; 20:21). It is both a divine gift and a human task (5:31; 2:38). It embraces all life (cf. Acts 3:19 etc.). Its basis is Christ’s saving work (5:31). The Spirit effects it (11:18). Faith goes with it (26:18). The imminent end gives urgency to its proclamation (Rev. 2:5, 16; 3:3). The goal is remission of sins (Acts 3:19) and final salvation (11:18).
b. Paul. In Rom. 2:4 metánoia in view of the judgment is what God in his goodness seeks for us. It is God’s gift (2 Tim. 2:25). It means a radical break with the past (2 Cor. 12:21). Psychologically it involves remorse (2 Cor. 7:9–10), but more deeply it is God’s saving work. For Paul, the concept of faith embraces conversion with its implication of death and renewal. This explains his sparing use of the terms.
c. John. In John, too, faith includes conversion. So does the new birth from God. The sharp line drawn between light and darkness etc. means that believing in God necessarily carries with it a turning from evil.
d. The Impossibility of a Second metanoía in Hebrews. Hebrews stresses the total seriousness of conversion. We cannot command it at will (12:7). There is no renewal of it for apostates. What is at issue is not daily repentance but the decisive change that is a new creation. Those who are set in the circle of eschatological salvation, if they consciously arrest the movement and turn back from God, are exposed to eschatological judgment. Conversion is a totality, and hence its surrender is a total surrender.
F. metanoéō and metánoia in the Ecclesiastical Writings of the Postapostolic and Early Catholic Period. The apostolic fathers make frequent use of the terms in the full sense (1 Clem. 8.3; Justin Dialogue 109. 1; Hermas Mandates 4.3.2). Greek ideas are interfused (Hermas Visions 3.7.3; Justin Apology 61. 10; Mart. Pol. 9.2), but Christian influence is apparent (Did. 10.6; 1 Clem. 7.4; Hermas Similitudes 9.22.3; Justin Apology 15.7–8), and there is a strong orientation to the OT (1 Clem. 8; Justin Dialogue 25.4; 30. 1; 107.2). Jewish ideas make some impact. Thus keeping the commandments is part of conversion (Hermas Visions 5.6–7), and penitence with weeping and wailing is required (Justin Dialogue 141.3). This leads to the development of a penitential discipline and the equation of metánoia and penance. The teaching of Hermas opens the door for this with its message of a second repentance. The first conversion is unique (Mandates 4.3.1–2), but a second repentance is possible which consists of moral achievement in accordance with the mandates (Mandates 1–12). Asceticism and penal suffering are the school of this conversion (Similitudes 7.4–5; Mandates 4.2.2).
ametanóētos (→ ametamélētos under metamélomai). This word means “exposed to no change of mind,” “beyond repentance or recall,” “unshakable.” The Stoics use it to express their ideal of never repenting. Paul, however, poses the Christian antithesis to this ideal by using the word in Rom. 2:5 for the hardened mind and heart of the self-righteous who resist conversion.
A. The Usage.
1. pronoéō. This word means “to perceive in advance,” “to note beforehand,” “to foresee”; also “to know in advance,” then “to care for,” “to make provision for,” “to take thought for.” “To care for” is the meaning in 1 Tim. 5:8, while “to have regard for” is the sense in 2 Cor. 8:1 and Rom. 12:17 (cf. Prov. 3:4 LXX).
2. prónoia. This word means “prior vision or knowledge” but usually has the sense of “forethought” or “provision.” When the term is applied to the gods the meanings converge in foreknowledge, foresight, and foreordination. The stress is on the temporal and rational elements. In philosophy prónoia is used for divine providence and itself becomes a term for deity (especially in Stoicism). The NT never alludes to divine prónoia. prónoia is rhetorically ascribed to Felix in Acts 24:2, and in Rom. 13:14 Paul warns believers not to care for the body in such a way as to give entry to sinful lusts.
B. The Concept of Divine Providence.
1. Greek and Roman Antiquity. Beginning with the idea of the rule of cosmic reason, Greek thought develops the concept of a divine prónoia that works in nature for human good. The wise and just care of the gods binds us to obedient trust. Providence is at the heart of Stoic belief. Nothing is contingent; immanent divine power harmonizes all things and works them for good. Destiny may be ineluctable, but it expresses a benevolent concern. Moral as well as physical events are under divine control, and a rational humanity is the goal. Since the gods cannot fail, a joyous confidence results.
2. The OT. The only direct expression of providence in the OT is in Job 10:12, but the belief that the God of creation upholds and directs the world is everywhere present (cf. Pss. 65:6ff.; 104; Hos. 2:10; Job 9:5ff.). God sees to it that his purposes are achieved (Ps. 19:6; Job 38:33; Prov. 8:29; Jer. 5:22). We have here no neutral or abstract idea but the personal God who overrules the history of his people (Dt. 32:39; 2 Kgs. 19:25ff.) and shapes the destiny of all peoples (Am. 2:1ff.; 9:7; Gen. 11:1ff.; Is. 41:2ff.). Displaying his presence by miracles (1 Sam. 12: 16ff.), God foresees history (Is. 22:11) and chooses instruments to effect his purposes in it (Is. 49:1 ff.). Believers are caught up in the events that God directs and hence they experience his guidance and see that their lives are in his hands (Prov. 20:24; Job 5: 18ff.; Ps. 16:5ff.). Even evil is a means in God’s hands (Am. 3:5–6; Is. 45:7). Incomprehensibly it serves his plan of salvation (cf. Gen. 50:20). The OT view of providence is strongly theocentric and volitional.
3. Judaism. Through all the pressures of history Judaism maintains the OT belief in God’s providence. This is apparent in the great apocalypses in which persons and events serve foreknown ends and history follows a predetermined course with the rule of God as the final goal. The law is a providential guarantee of God’s dynamic presence and its commandments are tools of providence. God controls all situations, so that one may commit oneself always to him in prayer, although providence in this sense does not negate human freedom. To express the idea of providence Hellenistic Judaism takes over the term prónoia. It is natural that God as Father should be concerned for his children. He thus works to avert what is harmful and to achieve what is beneficial (cf. Philo and Josephus). The habit even develops of calling God prónoia (4 Macc. 9:24), and Philo can describe providence in Stoic terms (cf. On the Special Laws 3.189).
4. The NT. That the NT does not express the concept of providence illustrates its distinction from philosophy. The belief is implicitly present but along OT lines. God as Creator is Lord of heaven and earth (Mt. 11:25). He directs history’s course to his own goal (Rom. 11:36). Predominant is the love of God enacted in Christ. This is what is reflected in God’s sending sunshine and rain on all people (Mt. 5:45) and in his care for all creatures (6:26ff.). God works all things for good for those who love him (Rom. 8:28), and nothing can separate them from his love (8:35ff.; cf. Phil. 2:13). This faith gives individuals their place in God’s teleological control of history (Rom. 9–11) with the establishment of his kingdom as the goal. The foreseen plan of salvation, manifested in history in Christ, reaches its consummation beyond history.
5. The Early Church. The apostolic fathers inherit the concept of providence. The sprouting of seeds attests to the resurrection (1 Clem. 24.5) and the church is the work of divine providence (Hermas Visions 1.3.4). Philosophical ideas intermingle with the primary soteriological concern (Athenagoras Supplication 1.1). If Irenaeus ascribes providence plainly to the God of salvation (Against Heresies 4.36.6), Clement of Alexandria views it as a rational truth, to doubt which is unchristian (Stromateis 1.52.1ff.). Philosophy itself is for him a work of providence preparing the way for the gospel (1.18.4; 6.128.3). The tendency, then, is to split providence and salvation into distinct branches of the divine operation that are related, but not organically so.
hyponoéō, hypónoia. The verb means “to think in secret,” “to suspect,” or, more generally, “to conjecture.” In the NT only Acts uses it, and with no theological significance. It means “to suppose” in 13:25, “to suspect” in 27:18, and “to conjecture” in 27:27. The noun has such senses as “secret opinion,” “conjecture,” “illusion,” and “hidden meaning” (e.g., of metaphors or allegories). In 1 Tim. 6:4, which depicts the liking of false teachers for wars of words, the reference is to the wicked suspicions or insinuations with which they try to discredit those who oppose them.
nouthetéō, nouthesía. The verb means “to impart understanding,” “to set right,” “to lay on the heart.” The stress is on influencing not merely the intellect but the will and disposition. The word thus acquires such senses as “to admonish,” “to warn,” “to remind,” and “to correct.” It describes a basic means of education. Philo and Clement of Alexandria speak about God or Christ warning, censuring, and encouraging us in this way. The idea is not that of punishment but of a moral appeal that leads to amendment. In this sense it takes on the meaning “to discipline.” Philosophy, however, does not use it technically for its own work. The LXX makes little use of it; it means “to reprimand” in 1 Sam. 3:13, “to admonish” in Job 4:3, and “to correct” in Job 30:1; 36:12. The noun, which means “admonition” or “correction,” is common in Philo, for whom it represents divine warnings as distinct from divine punishments. The only LXX use is in Wis. 16:6 (the desert plagues as a warning), but Job 5:17 has the synonymous nouthétēma. The group occurs in the NT only in Paul. In Eph. 6:4 the noun represents a means of Christian upbringing, i.e., the admonition or instruction which will correct but not provoke. In 1 Cor. 10:11 God’s OT judgments have pedagogic significance; they are written for our instruction. The verb denotes a pastoral function. Paul warns and teaches (Col. 1:18) with a view to bringing believers to maturity in Christ. Admonition is a central part of the cure of souls (Acts 20:31). Criticisms are fatherly words of correction (1 Cor. 4:14–15). The churches are to correct one another through their pastors (1 Th. 5:12) or their reciprocal ministries (1 Th. 5:14). This may be a correcting of the refractory (2 Th. 3:15), but it may also be a last attempt to reclaim heretics (Tit. 3:10). The pastoral use remains a common one in the apostolic fathers (1 Clem. 7.1; Ignatius Ephesians 3.1; Hermas Visions 2.4.3), and the reference may also be to admonitory sermons (2 Clem. 17.3; Justin Apology 67.4). [J. BEHM, IV, 989–1022]
Kittel, G., Friedrich, G., & Bromiley, G. W. (1985). Theological Dictionary of the New Testament (pp. 636–646). Grand Rapids, MI: W.B. Eerdmans.
νοῦς — mind (32×) +NT +AFHebrew Alignment
לֵב—heart (3): Ex 7:23; Job 7:17; Is 41:22
לֵבָב—heart (3): Jos 14:7; Isa 10:7, 12
אֹ֫זֶן—ear (2): Job 12:11; 33:16
בין—understand (1): Pr 29:7
רוּחַ—spirit; wind (1): Is 40:13
mind (20): Esd A 2:8; Pr 24:71; Job 7:20; 36:19; Wis 4:12; 9:15; Jdt 8:14; Sus 9; 2 Mac 15:8; 3 Mac 1:25; 4 Mac 1:15, 35; 2:16, 18, 22; 3:17; 5:11; 14:11; 16:13; Sus 9
attention (1): Esd A 9:41
(no translation) (1): Enoch 8:3
(2012). The Lexham Analytical Lexicon to the Septuagint. Bellingham, WA: Lexham Press.