Sermon for September 8, 2019

Empathetic Bowels — Hebrews 4:15-16

STRONGS NT 4697:σπλαγχνίζομαι (splanchnizomai) – verb—to be moved as to one’s bowels, hence to be moved with compassion, have compassion (for the bowels were thought to be the seat of love and pity.) 1

STRONGS NT 4698:σπλάγχνον (splagchnon)- noun— bowels, intestines, (the heart, lungs, liver, etc.) The bowels were regarded as the seat of the more violent passions, such as anger and love; but by the Hebrews as the seat of the tenderer affections, esp. kindness, benevolence, compassion; hence our heart (tender mercies, affections, etc.) A heart in which mercy resides. 2

·In the Kings James translation splanchnizomai is
 translated as to “have compassion” (7 times) or “to
 be moved with compassion” (5 times).  All the exam-
 ples of the use of this word in the New Testament all
 deal with Jesus’actions towards people.
—   Matt. 9:36, 14:14, 15:32, 18:27, 20:34;Mark 1:41,
       6:34, 8:2, 9:22; Luke 7:13, 10:33, 15:20

·  In the King James translation, splagchnon is
 “bowels” (9 times), “inward affection” (1 time)
  and “tender mercy” (1 time).  Greek poets be-
  lieved the bowels were the seat of more violent
  passions, such as anger and love, but the Hebrews
  believed they were the seat of the tenderer affect-
  tions, especially kindness, benevolence, and com-
  passion, hence, the equivalent to our heart.
     — Psalm 24;6, 25:6, 39:12, 40:12; Proverbs
          12:10; Isaiah 47:6; Luke 1:78; Acts 1:18;
         2 Corinthians 6:12, 7:15; Philippians 1;8,
         2:1; Colossians 3:12; Philemon 1:7, 1:12,
           1:20; 1 John 3:17

Jesus’ Actions (Empathy) and Our (Re)action

Jesus answered and said unto him, “If a man love me, he will keep my words; and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him.  He that loveth me not keepeth not my sayings; And the word which ye hear is not mine, but the Father’s which sent me.  These things have I spoken unto you, being yet present with you. But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.  Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you.  Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.”   —  (John 14:23-27 RV)


1   “G4697—aplagchnizomai– Strong’s Greek Lexixon (KJV).”Blue Letter Bible. Accessed 4 Sep, 2019.

2  “G4698—splagchnon—Strong’s Greek Lexicon (KJV). “Blue Letter Bible.  Accessed 4 Sep, 2019.

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