The Berean Expositor
Volume 34 - Page 20 of 261
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This passage indicates that xenos is once used in the LXX in the sense of "guest".
The reader can see for himself that "stranger", "alien", "foreigner", is the primary
significance of the word xenos and that "guest" and "host" is a derived or secondary
We now come to Eph. 2: 12 to see what the context demands. The scale is already
dipped by the weight of Scripture usage in favour of the translation, "stranger", and there
will have to be very strong reason to justify any alteration.
The phrase under consideration, is in correspondence with another of like import.
"Being aliens from the commonwealth of Israel" (Eph. 2: 12). This alienation finds its
dreadful echo in the practical section of the same epistle where we read:--
"That ye henceforth walk not as other Gentiles walk, in the vanity of their mind,
having the understanding darkened, being alienated from the life of God" (Eph. 4: 17,
The reader may have seen in his newspaper some sort of "Quiz" in which general
knowledge and intelligence tests are a feature. One such test is that which is known as
"Spot the intruder" or some such name, and is generally a collection of words containing
one that is outside the category. For example, in such a list of names as Shakespeare,
Tennyson, Shelley, Beethoven, Byron, and Browning, it is obvious that "Beethoven" is
the intruder, a Musician among Poets. Eph. 2: 11-13 contains a list of words and it will
be seen that "Guest" would be an intruder among such words as Gentiles, In the flesh,
Uncircumcision, Made by Hands, Without Christ, Aliens, Guests, No hope, Without God,
In the world and Far off.
Is it conceivable that one who was a "guest" of the covenants of promise could be at
the same time Godless, Christless and Hopeless? The church that the apostle has in mind
in Eph. 2: is a new thing, created so by God, for the passage in the fifteenth verse that
reads "To make in Himself of the twain" should be translated "To create in Himself of
the twain" as the R.V. indicates.
The Church of the mystery is no mere evolution, it is a new creation, and as with all
other "New creations" of God, "Former things" pass away, and with that passing of
"former things" the dispensational place of the Gentile, whatever it may have been, is
swept aside, the new thing completely taking its place.