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Bible Encyclopedias

International Standard Bible Encyclopedia

Orator; Oration

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or´a - tẽr , ṓ - rā´shun : The word "orator" occurs twice: (1) As the King James Version rendering of להשׁ , laḥash ; only Isaiah 3:3 , "the eloquent orator," the King James Version margin "skilful of speech," where the Revised Version (British and American) rightly substitutes "the skillful enchanter." The word laḥash is probably a mimetic word meaning "a hiss," "a whisper" and is used in the sense of "incantation" "charm." Hence, nebhōn laḥash means "skillful in incantation," "expert in magic." See DIVINATION; ENCHANTMENT . (2) As the rendering of ῥήτωρ , rhḗtōr , the title applied to Tertullus, who appeared as the advocate of the Jewish accusers of Paul before Felix (Acts 24:1 ). The proceedings, as was generally the case in the provincial Roman courts, would probably be conducted in Latin, and under Roman modes of procedure, in which the parties would not be well versed; hence, the need of a professional advocate. Rhētōr is here the equivalent of the older Greek sunḗgoros , "the prosecuting counsel," as opposed to the súndikos , "the defendant's advocate."

Oration occurs only in Acts 12:21 : "Herod ... made an oration unto them" ( ἐδημηγόρει πρὸς αὐτούς , edēmēgórei prós autoús ). The verb dēmēgoréō , "to speak in an assembly" (from dḗmos , "people," agoreúō , "to harangue"), is often found in classical Greek, generally in a bad sense (Latin concionari ); here only in the New Testament.

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Bibliography Information
Orr, James, M.A., D.D. General Editor. Entry for 'Orator; Oration'. International Standard Bible Encyclopedia. https://www.studylight.org/encyclopedias/eng/isb/o/orator-oration.html. 1915.

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