This word is used to translate two Greek words:
(1) aitios, literally, "cause," hence, "author." Hebrews 5:9, He "became the author of eternal salvation."
(2) archego = literally, "chief leader," "prince," "captain"; then author, originator. It is rendered "author" in the following passages:
(a) Hebrews 12:2, "looking unto Jesus, the author [King James Version, Revised Version] and finisher [Revised Version, "perfecter"] of our faith." But here it seems better to take archegos in its primary sense, "leader" (Revised Version margin "captain"), rather than in its secondary sense "author." The meaning is, not that He is the originator of faith in us, but that He Himself is the pioneer in the life of faith. He is first in the company of the faithful (compare references to His "faithfulness," Hebrews 2:17; 3:2,5,6), far surpassing in His fidelity even the Old Testament saints mentioned in chapter 11; and therefore we are to look to Him as our perfect pattern of faith. Faith has not only Christ for its object, but Christ for its supreme example. So Bengel, Bleek, B. Weiss, Alford, A. B. Davidson, Grimm-Thayer. Others, however, take the word in the sense of "author."
(b) Hebrews 2:10, "to make the author [King James Version, "captain"] of their salvation perfect through sufferings." Here the idea of Christ as originator or author of our salvation is present (compare the passage Hebrews 5:9, where however a different word is used; see above). But here again the original meaning of "leader" is not to be lost sight of. He, being the first possessor of salvation, becomes the author of it for others. "The idea that the Son goes before the saved in the same path ought perhaps to be retained" (Davidson). Compare Hebrews 6:20, where Jesus is said to be our "forerunner."
(c) Acts 3:15, King James Version margin and the Revised Version margin have "author," where text has "prince." Here again it is possible that the two ideas are present.
D. Miall Edwards
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