Also see definition of "People" in Word Study
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NAVE: People
Pentecost | Pentecostalism | Penuel | Penuriousness | Penury | People | Peraea | Perazim | Perazim, Mount | Perdition | Peres


People [NAVE]

PEOPLE, common. Heard Jesus gladly, Matt. 7:28; 9:8, 33; 13:54; Mark 6:2.


PEOPLE - pe'-p'-l: In English Versions of the Bible represents something over a dozen Hebrew and Greek words. Of these, in the Old Testament, `am, is overwhelmingly the most common (about 2,000 times), with le'om, and goy, next in order; but the various Hebrew words are used with very little or no difference in force (e.g. Prov 14:28; but, on the other hand, in Ps 44 contrast verses 12 and 14). Of the changes introduced by the Revised Version (British and American) the only one of significance (cited explicitly in the Preface to the English Revised Version) is the frequent use of the plural "peoples" (strangely avoided in the King James Version except Rev 10:11; 17:15), where other nations than Israel are in question. So, for instance, in Ps 67:4; Isa 55:4; 60:2, with the contrast marked in Ps 33:10 and 12; Ps 77:14 and 15, etc. In the New Testament, laos, is the most common word, with ochlos, used almost as often in the King James Version. But in the Revised Version (British and American) the latter word is almost always rendered "multitude," "people" being retained only in Lk 7:12; Acts 11:24,26; 19:26, and in the fixed phrase "the common people" (ho polus ochlos) in Mk 12:37; Jn 12:9,12 margin (the retention of "people" would have been better in Jn 11:42, also), with "crowd" (Mt 9:23,25; Acts 21:35). The only special use of "people" that calls for attention is the phrase "people of the land." This may mean simply "inhabitants," as Ezek 12:19; 33:2; 39:13; but in 2 Ki 11:14, etc., and the parallel in 2 Chronicles, it means the people as contrasted with the king, while in Jer 1:18, etc., and in Ezek 7:27; 22:29; 46:3,9, it means the common people as distinguished from the priests and the aristocracy. A different usage is that for the heathen (Gen 23:7,12,13; Nu 14:9) or half-heathen (Ezr 9:1,2; 10:2,11; Neh 10:28-31) inhabitants of Palestine. From this last use, the phrase came to be applied by some rabbis to even pure-blooded Jews, if they neglected the observance of the rabbinic traditions (compare Jn 7:49 the King James Version). For "people of the East" see CHILDREN OF THE EAST.

Burton Scott Easton

Also see definition of "People" in Word Study

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