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Old & New Testament Greek Lexical DictionaryGreek Lexicon

Strong's #1308 - διαφέρω

from (G1223) and (G5342)
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  1. to bear or carry through any place
  2. to carry different ways
    1. to carry in different directions, to different places
      1. of people who are carried hither and thither in a ship, driven to and fro
    2. to differ, to test, prove, the good things that differ,
      1. to distinguish between good and evil, lawful and unlawful, to approve of things that excel, to differ from one
      2. to excel, surpass one
    3. impersonally, it makes a difference, it matters, is of importance
Hebrew Equivalent Words:
Strong #: 8133 ‑ שְׁנָה (shen‑aw');  
Frequency Lists
Verse Results
KJV (16)
Matthew 4
Mark 1
Luke 3
Acts 2
Romans 1
1 Corinthians 1
Galatians 3
Philippians 1
NAS (19)
Matthew 6
Mark 1
Luke 3
Acts 3
Romans 1
1 Corinthians 1
Galatians 3
Philippians 1
HCS (13)
Matthew 3
Mark 1
Luke 2
Acts 2
Romans 1
1 Corinthians 1
Galatians 2
Philippians 1
BSB (13)
Matthew 3
Mark 1
Luke 2
Acts 2
Romans 1
1 Corinthians 1
Galatians 2
Philippians 1
ESV (12)
Matthew 2
Mark 1
Luke 2
Acts 2
Romans 1
1 Corinthians 1
Galatians 2
Philippians 1
WEB (18)
Matthew 5
Mark 1
Luke 3
Acts 2
Romans 1
1 Corinthians 1
Galatians 4
Philippians 1
Liddell-Scott-Jones Definitions


fut. διοίσω S. OT 321, διοίσομαι h.Merc. 255, etc.: aor. 1 διήνεγκα, Ion. διήνεικα: aor. 2 διήνεγκον: —


1. carry over or across, δ. ναῦς τὸν Ἰσθμόν Th. 8.8; carry from one to another, διαφέρεις κηρύγματα E. Supp. 382; [ τὸ ἤλεκτρον] διαφέρεται εἰς τοὺς Ἕλληνας Arist. Mir. 836b6: metaph., γλῶσσαν διοίσει will put the tongue in motion, will speak, S. Tr. 323 codd.

2. of Time, δ. τὸν αἰῶνα, τὸν βίον, go through life, Hdt. 3.40, E. Hel. [10]; νύκτα Id. Rh. 600: abs., ἄπαις διοίσει ib. 982: Med., live, continue, ὑγιηροὶ τἄλλα διαφέρονται Hp. Art. 56; σοῦ διοίσεται μόνος will pass his life apart from thee, S. Aj. 511; σκοπούμενος διοίσει X. Mem. 2.1.24 (cj. Dind. for διέσῃ).

3. bear through, bear to the end, σκῆπτρα E. IA 1195; γαστρὸς ὄγκον δ., of a woman, Id. Ion 15, cf. X. Mem. 2.2.5: hence,

4. bear to the end, go through with, πόλεμον Hdt. 1.25, Th. 1.11; but also, bear the burden of war, Id. 6.54; endure, support, with an Adv., ῥᾷστα γὰρ τὸ σόν τε σὺ κἀγὼ διοίσω τοὐμόν S. OT 321; δ. πότμον δάκρυσι E. Hipp. 1143 (lyr.): abs., of patients in disease, δ. ἕως τῶν εἰκοσιτεσσάρων ἡμερέων Hp. Int. 40; δ. φθειρόμενος ib. 12 (also ἡ νοῦσος δ. ἐννέα ἔτεα ibid.).


1. carry different ways, Ar. Lys. 570, etc.; δ. ἕκαστα εἰς τὰς χώρας τὰς προσηκούσας X. Oec. 9.8; toss about, ὅπλισμα.. διαφέρων ἐσφενδόνα E. Supp. 715; δ. τὰς κόρας to turn the eyes about, Id. Ba. 1087. Or. 1261 (lyr.): Pass., to be drawn apart, disrupted, opp. συμφέρεσθαι, Heraclit. 10, Pl. Sph. 242e, Epicur. Nat. 908.2; to be tossed about, dub. in Str. 3.2.5; δ. ἐν τῷ Ἀδρίᾳ Acts 27:27, cf. Plu. Galb. 26.

2. δ. τινά spread his fame abroad, Pi. P. 11.60; εἰς ἅπαντας τὴν ἐκείνου μνήμην δ. D. 61.46: Pass., φήμη διηνέχθη Plu. 2.163c.

3. tear asunder, E. Ba. 754; disjoin, Arist. Po. 1451a34 (Pass.): metaph., distract, τὰς ψυχὰς φροντίσιν Plu. 2.133d, cf. 97f(Pass.), D.Chr. 32.46 (Pass.).

4. δ. τὴν ψῆφον give one's vote a different way, i.e. against another, Hdt. 4.138, etc.; but also, give each man his vote, E. Or. 49, Th. 4.74, X. Smp. 5.8.

5. ἐράνους δ., = διαλύεσθαι, pay them up, discharge them, Lycurg. 22.

6. defer, reserve for judgement, τὸν αἴτιον A. Ch. 68 (lyr., διασπαράσσει Sch.).

7. plunder, Herod. 7.90: Pass., τῶν ἀπὸ [τῆς οἰκίας] φορτίων διενηνεγμένων PLond. 1.45.9 (ii B.C.).

8. excel, ἀρετῇ τοὺς ἄλλους D.S. 11.67, cf. 2.5; καλλιτεκνίᾳ πάσας γυναῖκας Stud.Pont. 3.123 (Amasia).

III intr.,

1. differ, φυᾷ δ. Pi. N. 7.54; ἆρ' οἱ τεκόντες διαφέρουσιν ἢ τροφαί; is it one's parents or nurture that make the difference? E. Hec. 599: c. gen., to be different from, Id. Or. 251, Th. 5.86, etc.; οὐδὲν διοίσεις Χαιρεφῶντος τὴν φύσιν Ar. Nu. 503, cf. Pl. Prt. 329d; τὸ δ'.. ἀφανίζειν ἱερὰ ἔσθ' ὅτι τοῦ κόπτειν διαφέρει; D. 21.147; δ. τὰς μορφάς Arist. HA 497b15; δ. εἴς τι, ἔν τινι, X. Hier. 1.2, 7; παρὰ τὴν Βεβρυκίαν App. Mith. 1; καθ' ὑπεροχὴν καὶ ἕλλειψιν Arist. HA 486a22; κατὰ τὴν θέσιν Id. Mete. 341b24; πρός τι Id. HA 505a21; τίνι δ. τὰ ἄρρενα τῶν θηλειῶν.. θεωρείσθω Id. PA 684b3: c. inf., μόνῃ τῇ μορφῇ μὴ οὑχὶ πρόβατα εἶναι δ. Luc. Alex. 15: with Art., τρεῖς μόναι ψῆφοι διήνεγκαν τὸ μὴ θανάτου τιμῆσαι three votes made the difference (i.e. majority) against capital punishment, D. 23.167; also διαφέρει τὸ ἥμισυ τοῦ ἔργου makes a difference equal to half the effort expended, X. Oec. 20.17.

2. impers., διαφέρει it makes a difference, πλεῖστον δ. Hp. Aph. 5.22; βραχὺ δ. τοῖς θανοῦσιν εἰ.. E. Tr. 1248, etc.; οὐδὲν δ. it makes no odds, Pl. Phd. 89c, cf. Men. Epit. 193; σμικρὸν οἴει διαφέρειν; Pl. R. 467c: c. dat. pers., δ. μοι it makes a difference to me, Antipho 5.13, Pl. Prt. 316b, etc.; ἰδίᾳ τι αὐτῷ δ. he has some private interest at stake, Th. 3.42; εἰ ὑμῖν μή τι δ. if you see no objection, Pl. La. 187d; τί δέ σοι τοῦτο δ. εἴτε.. εἴτε μή; Id. R. 349a, cf. Grg. 497b, etc.: c. inf., οὐδέ τί οἱ διέφερεν ἀποθανεῖν Hdt. 1.85: with personal constr., πράγματά τινι διαφέροντα Plu. Caes. 65; to be of importance, πρός or εἴς τι, Gal. 15.420,428; τῷ ζῴῳ Id. UP 9.5.

3. τὸ δ. the difference, the odds, Pl. Phlb. 45d; = τὸ συμφέρον Antiph. 31; περὶ μεγίστων δὴ τῶν -όντων βουλεύεσθαι Th. 6.92, cf. Lys. 31.5, Isa 4.12; τὰ ἀναγκαιότερα τῷ ταμιείῳ δ. vital interests, PThead. 15.17 (iii A.D.); τὸ δ. μέρος τῶν ἀποφάσεων the essential part, POxy. 1204.11 (iii A.D.); τὰ δ. vital matters, Romans 2:18; ἐπιστάμενος τὰ δ. παραβαίνειν τολμᾷ And. 3.19 (but τὰ δ. also simply, points of difference, in character and the like, Th. 1.70, etc.).

4. to be different from a person: generally, in point of excess, surpass, excel him (cf. supr. 11.8), τινός v.l. for -όντως in Th. 3.39; τινί in a thing, Id. 2.39, Alex. 36.6; ἔν τινι Isoc. 3.39; εἴς τι Pl. Ap. 35b; κατὰ μέγεθος X. Lac. 1.10; πρός τι Aeschin. 1.181: c. inf., δ. τινὸς μεταβιβάζειν τινά Pl. Grg. 517b: sts. folld. by ἤ, πολὺ διέφερεν ἀλέξασθαι ἤ.. it was far better.. than.., X. An. 3.4.33, cf. Mem. 3.11.14, Vect. 4.25 (where it means to differ in point of diminution); also δ. μέγα τι παρὰ τὰς ἄλλας πόλεις Plb. 10.27.5: abs., excel, ἐπί τινι Isoc. 10.12; τάχει Jul. Or. 2.53c; οἱ τόποι διαφέρουσι Thphr. CP 5.14.9; διαφέρον τι πεπραχέναι a remarkable achievement, Plb. 6.39.2.

5. prevail, ἐπὶ πολὺ διήνεγκε Th. 3.83.

6. quarrel, struggle, Telecl. 20; οἱ διαφέροντες the parties, litigants, PPar. 69 B10 (iii A.D.).

7. come between, intervene, ὁ διαφέρων χρόνος Antipho 5.94.

8. belong to, τινί, as property, Ph. 1.207, PLond. 3.940.23 (iii A.D.); of persons, belong to a household, PStrassb. 26.5 (iv A.D.); οἱ -φέροντες kinsfolk, Annuario 4 /5.476 (Bargylia); appertain to, τῇ ὠνῇ BGU 1062.21 (iii A.D.); τὰ εἰς τοῦτο -φέροντα πράγματα Mitteis Chr. 372v3 (ii A.D.). Med. and Pass., be at variance, quarrel, τινί Heraclit. 72, cf. Amphis 32, etc.; περί τινος Hdt. 1.173, Pl. Euthphr. 7b; δ. ἀλλήλοις differ with, ibid., cf. Antipho 5.42; τινὶ περί τινος Th. 5.31, cf. X. Oec. 17.4; πρὸς ἀλλήλους Lys. 18.17, cf. Hyp. Oxy. 1607 Fr. 1 iii 60, etc.; τὰ πρὸς ἀλλήλους Supp.Epigr. 1.363.5 (Samos, iii B.C.); ἀμφί τινος X. An. 4.5.17; διενεχθέντας γνώμῃ Hdt. 7.220; δ. ὡς.. maintain on the contrary that.., D. 56.46; οὐ διαφέρομαι, = οὔ μοι διαφέρει, Id. 9.8; μηδὲν διὰ τοῦτο διαφέρου let there be no dispute on this ground, Lys. 10.17; οἱ -φερόμενοι the litigants, SIG 685.29 (Crete, ii B.C.). Not in

Thayer's Expanded Definition

διαφέρω; 2 aorist διηνεγκον (but the subjunctive 3 person singular διενέγκῃ (Mark 11:16), the only aorist form which occurs, can come as well from 1 aorist διήνεγκα; cf Veitch, under the word φέρω, at the end); passive (present διαφέρομαι); imperfect διεφερομην; (from Homer (h. Merc. 255), Pindar down);

1. to bear or carry through any place: σκεῦος διά τοῦ ἱεροῦ, Mark 11:16.

2. to carry different ways, i. e., a. transitive, to carry in different directions, to different places: thus, persons are said διαφέρεσθαι, who are carried hither and thither in a ship, driven to and fro, Acts 27:27 (Strabo 3, 2, 7, p. 144; σκάφος ὑπ' ἐναντίων πνευμάτων διαφερόμενον, Philo, migr. Abr. § 27; Lucian, Hermot. 28; often in Plutarch) metaphorically, to spread abroad: διεφέρετο λόγος τοῦ κυρίου δἰ ὅλης τῆς χώρας, Acts 13:49 (ἀγγελιας, Lucian, dial. deor. 24, 1; φήμη διαφέρεται, Plutarch, mor., p. 163 d.).

b. intransitive (like the Latindiffero) to differ: δοκιμάζειν τά διαφέροντα, to test, prove, the things that differ, i. e. to distinguish between good and evil, lawful and unlawful, Romans 2:18; Philippians 1:10 (διάκρισις καλοῦ τέ καί κακοῦ, Hebrews 5:14); cf. Thol. Commentary on Romans, p. 111 edition 5.; Theophilus of Antioch ad Autol., p. 6, Otto edition δοκιμάζοντες τά διαφέροντα, ἤτοι φῶς, σκότος, λευκόν, μέλαν κτλ.); (others, adopting a secondary sense of each verb in the above passages, translate (cf. A. V.) to approve the things that excel; see Meyer (yet, cf. Weiss edition) on Romans, the passage cited; Ellicott on Philippians, the passage cited). διαφέρω τίνος, to differ from one, i. e. to excel, surpass one: Matthew 6:26; Matthew 10:31; Matthew 12:12; Luke 12:7, 24 (often so in Attic authors); τίνος ἐν τίνι, 1 Corinthians 15:41; (τίνος οὐδέν, Galatians 4:1).

c. impersonally, διαφέρει, it makes a difference, it matters, is of importance: οὐδέν μοι διαφέρει, it matters nothing to me, Galatians 2:6 (Plato, Prot., p. 316 b. ἡμῖν οὐδέν διαφέρει, p. 358 e.; de rep. 1, p. 340 c.; Demosthenes 124, 3 (in Philippians 3, 50); Polybius 3, 21, 9; Aelian v. h. 1, 25; others; (cf. Lob. ad Phryn., p. 394; Wetstein (1752) on Galatians, the passage cited)).

Thayer's Expanded Greek Definition, Electronic Database.
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Abbott-Smith Manual Greek Lexicon of the New Testament

δια -φέρω ,

[in LXX for H8133 (Daniel 7:1-28 only); 1 Samuel 17:39, Ezra 3:13, al.;]

1. trans.,

(a) to carry through: seq. διά , Mark 11:16;

(b) to carry about, spread abroad: pass., Acts 13:49; Acts 27:27.

2. Intrans.,

(a) to differ: τὰ διαφέροντα , Romans 2:18, Philippians 1:10 (R, mg., but v. infr.); impers., διαφέρει , it makes a difference, it matters: Galatians 2:6;

(b) to excel: c. gen. Matthew 6:26; Matthew 10:31; Matthew 12:12, Luke 12:7; Luke 12:24, 1 Corinthians 15:41, Galatians 4:1; τὰ διαφέροντα , Romans 2:18, Philippians 1:10 (R, txt.; for discussion and reff. v. ICC on Ro, Phi, ll. c.).†

Abbott-Smith Manual Greek Lexicon of the New Testament.
Copyright © 1922 by G. Abbott-Smith, D.D., D.C.L.. T & T Clarke, London.
Vocabulary of the Greek NT

It may be well to illustrate at length the varying shades of meaning which this common verb exhibits. In P Lond 45.9 (B.C. 160–59) (= I. p. 36) a certain Ptolemy addresses a petition to King Ptolemy Philometor stating that his house had been sacked, and goods valued at twenty talents had been ";carried off";—τῶν ἀπ᾽ αὐτῆς φορτίων διενηνεγμένων. For δ. = ";differ"; cf. P Tor I. 1viii. 15 (B.C. 116) μηδὲ τὴν αὐτὴν ἐργασίαν ἐπιτελεῖν, διαφέρειν δὲ τὴν τούτων λειτουργίαν. From this is naturally developed the meaning ";surpass, excel,"; common in NT. For this see P Tebt I. 27.6 (B.C. 113) τῶν οὖν ἐν τοῖς καθ᾽ ἡ [μᾶ ]ς (l. [μᾶ ]ς) τόποις πίστει καὶ ἀσφαλείαι δι [α ]φ [ε ]ρ [όν ]των. . . τὰς κατ᾽ ἄνδρα γραφάς, ";the lists of individuals in your district who are conspicuous for honesty and steadiness"; (Edd.), so again.51, P Oxy VII. 1061.12 (B.C. 22) διαφέρετε γὰρ τοῦ Πτολεμαίου ἐμπειρίᾳ, ";for you are superior to Ptolemaeus in experience"; (Edd.), Syll 365.9 (A.D. 37) θεῶν δὲ χάριτες τούτῳ διαφέρουσιν ἀνθρωπίνων διαδοχῶν, ᾧ ἢ νυκτὸς ἥλιος κτλ. Out of ";differing"; comes also the meaning ";be at variance."; So P Lille I. 16.5 (iii/B.C.) σοί τε οὐ βούλεσθαι διαφέρεσθαι περὶ τούτου, ";qu’il ne voulait pas entrer en désaccord là-dessus avec toi"; (Ed.), P Oxy III. 496.8 (a marriage contract—A.D. 127) [ ]ν δέ τι διαφέρωντα [ι ] πρὸς ἀλλήλους, of a husband and wife, P Par 69B. .10 (A.D. 233) ὁ στρατηγὸς πρὸς τῷ λογιστ [ηρίῳ τοῖς ] διαφέρουσι ἐσχόλασεν, of granting an audience to ";litigants,"; P Lond 232.7 (c. A.D. 346) (= II. p. 296) διαφέρι μοι διαφέρι δὲ καὶ. . . Παύλῳ, ";has a difference with me and has a difference also with Paul,"; and from the inscrr. Syll 929.29 (? B.C. 139) διηκούσαμεν τῶν διαφερομένων. For the subst. in the same sense, cf. the marriage-contract BGU I. 251.5 (A.D. 81) where certain provisions are made— ]ὰν δὲ διαφορᾶς [γενομένης χωρίζωνται ἀπ᾽ ἀλλή ]λων, so ib. 252.7 (A.D. 98), and P Ryl II 154.24 (A.D. 66). There remains the well attested meaning ";belongs to,"; as of property, for which LS quote only Philo—P Lond 940.28 (A.D. 226) (= III. p. 118) ἀδήλου ὄντος εἰ ὑμῖν διαφέρει ἡ κληρονομία αὐτοῦ, P Strass I. 22.22 (iii/A.D.) τοῦ νομίζοντος αὑτῷ διαφέρειν, ";since he thinks that it belongs to himself,"; ib. 26.5 (iv/A.D.) σπούδασον παρασχεῖν Ἑρμῆτι τῷ ἐμοὶ διαφέροντι τὰ δύο νομίσματα, ἃ χρεωστεῖς μοι, ";pay as soon as possible to Hermes, who belongs to my household, the two coins, which you are owing to me."; With this may be compared P Tebt II. 288.11 (A.D. 226) ὡς τοῦ κινδύνου καὶ ὑμεῖν [αὐ ]τοῖς ἅμα ἐκείνοις διοίσοντος ἐάν τι φανῇ [κε ]κακουργημέ [νο ]ν ἢ οὐ δεόντως πεπρ [α ]γμένον, ";since you not less than they will incur the risk if any misdemeanour or irregularity be proved to have occurred"; (Edd.). So P Thead 8.24 (A.D. 306), P Gen I. 62.6 (iii/A.D.), Chrest. II. 88i..30 (ii/A.D.), BGU IV. 1062.21 (A.D. 237), etc. See also CR xxiv. p. 12. The editor’s rendering of P Oxy IX. 1204.11 (A.D. 299) ὧν τὸ διαφέρον μέρος καὶ τῶν ἀποφάσεων οὕτως ἔχει, ";the essential part of the proceedings and the judgement being as follows,"; with reference to certain legal proceedings, may be taken as supporting Moffatt’s translation of Romans 2:18 καὶ δοκιμάζεις τὰ διαφέροντα, ";and with a sense of what is vital in religion"; (cf. Philippians 1:10) : τὰ διαφέροντα would thus offer a positive counterpart in popular usage to the negative τὰ ἀδιάφορα. We set with this passages where διαφέρει = Lat. interest, as P Thead 15.17 (A.D. 280–1) τὰ ἀναγκαιότερα τὰ τῷ ταμιείῳ διαφέροντα, ";most vital interests of the Treasury.";


The Vocabulary of the Greek New Testament.
Copyright © 1914, 1929, 1930 by James Hope Moulton and George Milligan. Hodder and Stoughton, London.
Derivative Copyright © 2015 by Allan Loder.
List of Word Forms
διαφερει διαφέρει διαφέρειν διαφερετε διαφέρετε διαφερομενων διαφερομένων διαφεροντα διαφέροντα διενεγκη διενέγκη διενέγκῃ διεφερετο διεφέρετο diapherei diaphérei diapherete diaphérete diapheromenon diapheromenōn diapheroménon diapheroménōn diapheronta diaphéronta dienenke dienenkē dienénkei dienénkēi diephereto diephéreto
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