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Bible Dictionaries

Watson's Biblical & Theological Dictionary

Hebrew of the Hebrews

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an appellation which the Apostle Paul applies to himself, Php_3:5 , concerning the meaning of which there has been some difference of opinion. Godwin, in his "Moses and Aaron," understands by this expression, a Hebrew both by father's and mother's side. But if it meant no more than this, there was little occasion for the Apostle's using it immediately after having declared that he was "of the stock of Israel, and the tribe of Benjamin," which, on Godwin's supposition, is the same as a Hebrew of the Hebrews; for the Jews were not allowed to marry out of their own nation. Beside, it is not likely that St. Paul would have mentioned it as a distinguishing privilege and honour, that his parents were not proselytes. It is more probable that a Hebrew of the Hebrews signifies a Hebrew both by nation and language, which many of Abraham's posterity, in those days, were not; or one of the Hebrew Jews who performed their public worship in the Hebrew tongue; for such were reckoned more honourable than the Jews born out of Judea, and who spoke the Greek tongue. See HELLENISTS .

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Bibliography Information
Watson, Richard. Entry for 'Hebrew of the Hebrews'. Richard Watson's Biblical & Theological Dictionary. https://www.studylight.org/dictionaries/eng/wtd/h/hebrew-of-the-hebrews.html. 1831-2.

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