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See Christians, Names of; Family Life and Relations

Baker's Evangelical Dictionary of Biblical Theology. Edited by Walter A. Elwell
Copyright © 1996 by Walter A. Elwell. Published by Baker Books, a division of
Baker Book House Company, Grand Rapids, Michigan USA.
All rights reserved. Used by permission.

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Bibliography Information

Elwell, Walter A. "Entry for 'Sister'". "Evangelical Dictionary of Theology". . 1997.


sis'-ter ('achoth):

Used repeatedly in the Old Testament of a female

(1) having the same parents as another; or

(2) having one parent in common, with another, half-sister (Genesis 20:12; Leviticus 18:9), and also

(3) of a female belonging to the same family or clan as another, so a kinswoman (Genesis 24:60; Job 42:11);

(4) also of a woman of the same country (Numbers 25:18).

(5) Figuratively, the two kingdoms, Israel and Judah, are sisters (Ezekiel 23:7).

(6) Confederate cities are conceived of as sisters (Ezekiel 16:45).

(7) 'Achoth is used of objects which go in pairs, as curtains, each `coupled to its sister' (Exodus 26:3,6), and of wings in pairs (Ezekiel 1:9; 3:13);

(8) of virtues or conditions, with which one is closely related:

"Say unto wisdom, thou art my sister" (Proverbs 7:4; compare Job 17:14);

(9) of a lover concerning his spouse, as a term of endearment (Song of Solomon 4:9; 5:1; 8:8).

In the New Testament, adelphe, used

(1) in sense of physical or blood kinship (Matthew 12:50; 13:56; 19:29; Luke 10:39; 14:26; John 11:1; 19:25; Acts 23:16);

(2) of fellow-members in Christ:

"Phoebe, our sister" (Romans 16:1; see also 1 Corinthians 7:15; 1 Timothy 5:1; James 2:15);

(3) possibly, of a church, "thy elect sister" (2John 1:13).


Edward Bagby Pollard

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.

Bibliography Information
Orr, James, M.A., D.D. General Editor. "Entry for 'SISTER'". "International Standard Bible Encyclopedia". 1915.