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Volume 34 - Page 9 of 261 Index | Zoom | |
means "To fall asleep involuntarily", consequently it is used of death. The word in
Luke 8: 52 is active, and means "To compose oneself to sleep". A good illustration of
the essential difference between the two words occurs in the first epistle to the
Thessalonians. In 4: 13-15 we read of them which "sleep", and these believers are
spoken of as "them which sleep in Jesus" (verse 14) and "the dead in Christ" (verse 16).
Moreover these are contrasted with those who are "alive and remain". In these passages
the word consistently used is koimaomai, for this "sleep" means "death".
In I Thess. 5:, however, katheudo is used, and not koimaomai:
"Let us not sleep, as do others" (verse 6).
"They that sleep, sleep in the night" (verse 7).
"Whether we wake of sleep" (verse 10).
Were the word "sleep" here synonymous with death, we should be able to restate
verse 6 as follows: "Therefore let us not die as do others"! but, alas, we have no such
option. The word "sleep" finds its synonym, not in death, but in "drunkenness", its
contrast in being "sober".
The reader of the A.V. should remember that the words "watch" in I Thess. 5: 6 and
"wake" in verse 10 are the same. The original word is gregoreo, and is translated "be
vigilant" once, "wake" once, "watch" twenty times, and "watchful" once; consequently
I Thess. 5: 10 should read, "Who died for us, that, whether we be watchful or drowsy, we
should live together with Him", although, of course, other scriptures make it plain that
the unwatchful believer may not be granted to "reign with Him", a doctrine not in view in
the chapter before us.
Here therefore is fact number four (#4); that two essentially different ideas are
presented by the two different words translated "sleep" in Luke 8: and John 11:, and
must therefore not be confounded.
There is however one further statement in Luke's Gospel that demands attention. It
is, "And her spirit came again" (Luke 8: 55). It is to Mark's account of the raising of
Jairus' daughter that we are indebted for the fact that on that occasion (Mark 5: 41) the
Saviour spoke Aramaic, not Greek, from which it is clear that her parents and those
concerned were acquainted with the Hebrew scriptures, and familiar with its idiom.
Having that in mind, let us refer to I Sam. 30: 11, 12, where we read:
"And they found an Egyptian in the field, and brought him to David, and gave him
bread, and he did eat; and they made him drink water; and they gave him a piece of a
cake of figs, and two clusters of raisins: and when he had eaten, HIS SPIRIT CAME
AGAIN to him."
This passage proves that the expression used in Luke 8: 55 does not necessitate
We learn therefore that Lazarus was actually dead, whereas, while the family and
friends of the little maid thought she was dead, they were mistaken. The word used of