The Berean Expositor
Volume 34 - Page 19 of 261
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were most certainly "strangers" and not "guests". The "resident strangers" at Athens, are
very like the "strangers of Rome" (Acts 2: 10) and cannot be translated "guests".  In
Rom. 16: 23, we have the word xenos translated "host". This can only be justified if the
word is used figuratively, for no one would suggest using the translation "host" in any of
the thirteen references given above.
Eustathius says, concerning this usage of xenos,
"Both he who entertained and he who was entertained were called xenos, in respect of
each other."
Parkhurst says of this word:
"Properly, a person who belonging to one country, dwells or sojourns in another, a
stranger, foreigner." "In a more general sense, a stranger, a person of another nation of
religion." "As an adjective, strange, foreign, wonderful."
The transition from the idea of "stranger" to "hospitality" is natural, and this has taken
place, but because this is so, that does not justify the substitution of "guest" for the
translation "stranger" unless the evidence of the context be overwhelmingly in its favour.
Cremer, in his Biblico-Theological Lexicon does not treat of xenos except to place it
as a synonym with paroikos.
Paroikeo, in Biblical Greek means, according to Cremer,
"Strangers who dwell anywhere, without citizen rights or home title."
Paroikia only in Biblical and patristic Greek.
(a) Dwelling as a sojourner in a foreign land without home or citizen rights;
(b) A foreign country as the dwelling place of him who has no home rights there.
Paroikos expresses a conception capable of many applications. Guest of God
(Lev. 25: 35), earthly homelessness (Psa. 119: 19), etc.
The LXX uses xenos to translate the following Hebrews words,
Traveller, helek (II Sam. 12: 4). This word means primarily to go, or to walk, and
so by an easy transition it becomes a tax, custom or duty, laid on ports or ways.
Should the reading arach be preferred here, there is no essential difference, arach
meaning "To go in a track" and as a noun, "a common road, highway; a traveler".
Stranger Gur (Job 31: 32). To sojourn, to dwell anywhere for a time, to live as
not at home. Translated "alien" in Exod. 18: 3, associated with the name
Stranger, Nokri (Ruth 2: 10). A foreigner, outlandish. As a verb the word means
"to alienate".
Nekar is used of "the stranger" and "the alien" as contrasted with Israel in
Exod. 12: 43; Isa. 60: and 61: In Lamentations the word is used in a sense very
suggestive of Eph. 2: 12.
"Behold our reproach, our inheritance is turned to strangers our house to
aliens" (Lam. 5: 1, 2).
Those Bidden Qara (I Sam. 9: 13).