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English Bible Dictionary

Anathema

 

Which literally means a thing suspended, is the equivalent of the Hebrew word signifying a thing or person voted. Any object so devoted to Jehovah was irredeemable. If an inanimate object, it was to be given to the priests, (Numbers 18:14) if a living creature or even a man, it was to be slain. (Leviticus 27:28,29) The word anathema frequently occurs in St. Paul's writings, and is generally translated accused, and you can find more about that here on st-takla.org on other commentaries and dictionary entries.An examination of the passages in which it occurs shows that it had acquired a more general sense as expressive either of strong feeling, (Romans 9:3) or of dislike and condemnation. (1 Corinthians 12:3; 16:22; Galatians 1:9)

 

* See also: Anathema in the Coptic Terms.

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