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Bible Dictionaries

Vine's Expository Dictionary of NT Words

Brother, Brethren, Brotherhood, Brotherly

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1: ἀδελφός

(Strong's #80 — Noun Masculine — adelphos — ad-el-fos' )

denotes "a brother, or near kinsman;" in the plural, "a community based on identity of origin or life." It is used of:

(1) male children of the same parents, Matt, 1:2; 14:3; (2) male descendants of the same parents, Acts 7:23,26; Hebrews 7:5; (3) male children of the same mother, Matthew 13:55; 1 Corinthians 9:5; Galatians 1:19; (4) people of the same nationality, Acts 3:17,22; Romans 9:3 . With "men" (aner, "male"), prefixed, it is used in addresses only, Acts 2:29,37 , etc.; (5) any man, a neighbor, Luke 10:29; Matthew 5:22; 7:3; (6) persons united by a common interest, Matthew 5:47; (7) persons united by a common calling, Revelation 22:9; (8) mankind, Matthew 25:40; Hebrews 2:17; (9) the disciples, and so, by implication, all believers, Matthew 28:10; John 20:17; (10) believers, apart from sex, Matthew 23:8; Acts 1:15; Romans 1:13; 1 Thessalonians 1:4; Revelation 19:10 (the word "sisters" is used of believers, only in 1 Timothy 5:2 ); (11) believers, with aner, "male," prefixed, and with "or sister" added, 1 Corinthians 7:14 (RV), 15; James 2:15 , male as distinct from female, Acts 1:16; 15:7,13 , but not Acts 6:3 . * [* From Notes on Thessalonians, by Hogg and Vine, p. 32.]

Notes: (1) Associated words are adelphotes, primarily, "a brotherly relation," and so, the community possessed of this relation, "a brotherhood," 1 Peter 2:17 (see 5:9, marg.); philadelphos, (phileo, "to love," and adelphos), "fond of one's brethren," 1 Peter 3:8; "loving as brethren," RV; philadelphia, "brotherly love," Romans 12:10; 1 Thessalonians 4:9; Hebrews 13:1; "love of the brethren," 1 Peter 1:22; 2 Peter 1:7 , RV; pseudadelphos, "false brethren," 2 Corinthians 11:26; Galatians 2:4 .

(2) In Luke 6:16; Acts 1:13 , the RV has "son," for AV, "brother."

(3) In Acts 13:1 , for suntrophos, see BRING , B, Note (6).

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Bibliography Information
Vines, W. E., M. A. Entry for 'Brother, Brethren, Brotherhood, Brotherly'. Vine's Expository Dictionary of NT Words. https://www.studylight.org/dictionaries/eng/ved/b/brother-brethren-brotherhood-brotherly.html. 1940.

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