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The meaning of Answer in the Bible
(From International Standard Bible Encyclopedia)

an'-ser: In our English Bible the word "answer" does not always mean a simple reply to a question.

1. In the Old Testament:

Six different words are translated by answer. (1) It is frequently used where no question has been asked and in such cases it means a word, a statement. (2) It also means a response (Job 21:34; Job 34:36). (3) It often means a declaration or proclamation from God where no question has been asked. See the many passages that read: "The Lord answered and said." (4) The other words translated "answer" or "answered" in the Old Testament are unimportant shadings and variations.

2. In the New Testament:

The words translated "answer" are not so varied. (1) It sometimes means an apology, a defense (I Peter 3:15; Acts 24:10, Acts 24:25). (2) It may mean simply "to say" (Mark 9:6). (3) It may mean a revelation from God (Romans 11:4). (4) It is also used to apply to unspoken thoughts of the heart, especially in the sayings of Jesus; also by Peter to Sapphira (Acts 5:8).

G. H. Gerberding


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