Jew, Jewess, Jewish

ju, joo, ju'-ish, joo'-ish (yehudhi plural yehudhim; Ioudaioi; feminine adjective yehudhith; Ioudaikos): "Jew" denotes originally an inhabitant of Judah (2Ki 16:6 applies to the two tribes of the Southern Kingdom), but later the meaning was extended to embrace all descendants of Abraham. In the Old Testament the word occurs a few times in the singular. (Es 2:5; 3:4, etc.; Jer 34:9; Zec 8:23); very frequently in the plural in Ezra and Nehemiah, Esther, and in Jeremiah and Daniel. The adjective in the Old Testament applies only to the "Jews' language" or speech (2Ki 18:26,28 parallel Ne 13:24; Isa 36:11,13). "Jews" (always plural) is the familiar term for Israelites in the Gospels (especially in John), Acts, Epistles, etc. "Jewess" occurs in 1Ch 4:18; Ac 16:1; 24:24. In Tit 1:14 a warning is given against "Jewish fables" (in Greek the adjective is found also in Ga 2:14). The "Jews' religion" (Ioudaismos) is referred to in Ga 1:13-14. On the "Jews' language,'' see LANGUAGES OF THE OLD TESTAMENT; on the "Jews' religion," see ISRAEL,RELIGION OF .

James Orr

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