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ISBE: MEAN
Meah | Meal | Meal Offering | Meals | Meals, Meal-Time | Mean | Meani | Meaninglessness | Measure | Measuring Line | Measuring Reed

Mean

MEAN [ISBE]

MEAN - men: The noun "meaning" (Dan 8:15 the King James Version, the Revised Version (British and American) "I sought to understand"; and 1 Cor 14:11) is synonymous with "signification" but in 1 Macc 15:4 the King James Version it expresses "purpose" (the Revised Version (British and American) "I am minded to land"). The noun "mean" in Hebrew always occurs in the plural, and is generally used in the sense of "agency," "instrument" (compare 1 Ki 10:29, etc.). the Revised Version (British and American) very frequently changes, King James Version: The Wisdom of Solomon 8:13, "because of her"; 2 Thess 2:3, "in any wise"; Lk 8:36, "how"; Prov 6:26, "on account of"; Rev 13:14, "by reason of" (compare also 2 Thess 3:16; Jn 9:21). Heb 9:15 (the King James Version "that by means of death") translates literally, "that a death having taken place," from ginomai, "to become," "to happen." Acts 18:21 the King James Version, "I must by all means keep this feast," is omitted in the Revised Version (British and American) in harmony with several cursives, the Vulgate, and some other versions

The adjective "mean" is used in the sense of "common," "humble" ('adham, "man"; compare Isa 2:9; 5:15; 31:8 omits "mean"). It is also used in the sense of "obscure" (Prov 22:29, chashokh, "obscure"; asemos, literally, "without a mark," "unknown," Acts 21:39). "Mean" is found in expressions like "in the meanwhile" (the King James Version 1 Ki 18:45, the Revised Version (British and American) "little while"; Jn 4:31; Rom 2:15, the Revised Version (British and American) "one with another"); "in the meantime" (1 Macc 11:41 the King James Version; Lk 12:1); and "in the mean season" the King James Version (1 Macc 11:14; 15:15). The adverb "meanly" is found (2 Macc 15:38) in the sense of "moderately."

The verb "mean" expresses purpose (Isa 3:15; 10:7; Gen 50:20, etc.). In some cases the Revised Version (British and American) renders literal translation: Acts 27:2, "was about to sail" (the King James Version "meaning to sail"); compare Acts 21:13; 2 Cor 8:13. In other instances the idea of "to mean" is "to signify," "to denote" (1 Sam 4:6; Gen 21:29; Mt 9:13, etc.). Lk 15:26 translates literally, "what these things might be." In Ex 12:26 the sense of "mean ye" is "to have in mind."

A. L. Breslich


Also see definition of "Mean" in Word Study


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