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Council

Council [N] [S]

spoken of counsellors who sat in public trials with the governor of a province ( Acts 25:12 ).

The Jewish councils were the Sanhedrim, or supreme council of the nation, which had subordinate to it smaller tribunals (the "judgment," perhaps, in Matthew 5:21 Matthew 5:22 ) in the cities of Palestine ( Matthew 10:17 ; Mark 13:9 ). In the time of Christ the functions of the Sanhedrim were limited ( John 16:2 ; 2 co. 11:24 ). In Psalms 68:27 the word "council" means simply a company of persons. (RSV marg., "company.")

In ecclesiastical history the word is used to denote an assembly of pastors or bishops for the discussion and regulation of church affairs. The first of these councils was that of the apostles and elders at Jerusalem, of which we have a detailed account in Acts 15 .

These dictionary topics are from
M.G. Easton M.A., D.D., Illustrated Bible Dictionary, Third Edition,
published by Thomas Nelson, 1897. Public Domain, copy freely.

[N] indicates this entry was also found in Nave's Topical Bible
[S] indicates this entry was also found in Smith's Bible Dictionary

Bibliography Information

Easton, Matthew George. "Entry for Council". "Easton's Bible Dictionary". .

Council. [N] [E]

  1. The great council of the Sanhedrin, which sat at Jerusalem. [SANHEDRIN]
  2. The lesser courts, ( Matthew 10:17 ; Mark 13:9 ) of which there were two at Jerusalem and one in each town of Palestine. The constitution of these courts is a doubtful point. The existence of local courts, however constituted, is clearly implied in the passages quoted from the New Testament; and perhaps the "judgment," ( Matthew 5:21 ) applies to them.
  3. A kind of jury or privy council, ( Acts 25:12 ) consisting of a certain number of assessors, who assisted Roman governors in the administration of justice and in other public matters.

[N] indicates this entry was also found in Nave's Topical Bible
[E] indicates this entry was also found in Easton's Bible Dictionary

Bibliography Information

Smith, William, Dr. "Entry for 'Council'". "Smith's Bible Dictionary". . 1901.