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Bible Dictionaries

Hastings' Dictionary of the New Testament


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In the EV_ of the NT ‘pattern’ occurs seven times, representing four different words in the original-τύπος, ὑποτύπωσις, ὑπόδειγμα, and ἀντίτυπον.

1. τύπος (from τύπτειν, ‘to strike’) denotes primarily a mark or impression left by a blow (cf. John 20:25 ‘the print [τύπον] of the nails’). In classical Greek it is used of the impress of a seal or the stamp struck by a die, and so comes to mean the figure or copy of something else. But as the impression on the wax reproduces the engraving on the seal, and the coin or medal the device on the die, the word comes to be transferred, by a familiar process in the history of language, from the effect to the cause, and so is used not only of the copy but of the example or pattern from which the copy is made. In Romans 6:17 the RVm_ offers ‘pattern’ as an alternative for ‘form’ of doctrine or teaching. In Titus 2:7 the AV_ has ‘pattern (RV_ ‘ensample’) of good works.’ In Hebrews 8:5 the AV_ and the RV_ both employ ‘pattern’ to render the τύπος shown to Moses in the Mount.

2. ὑποτύπωσις (from ὑποτυποῦν, ‘to sketch out,’ Lat. adumbrare) is strictly a ‘sketch’ or ‘outline’ (αἱ Ὑποτυπώσεις) is the name given by Sextus Empiricus to his outlines of the Pyrrhonic philosophy). In 1 Timothy 1:16 (‘a pattern [RV_ ‘ensample’] to them which should hereafter believe’) St. Paul may have used the word in its original meaning to suggest that his experiences as a saved sinner were an ‘adumbration’ of those of subsequent believers. But the secondary meaning ‘pattern’ is more probable, in view of the fact that the word is evidently used in this sense in 2 Timothy 1:13, ‘hold fast the form (RV_ ‘pattern’) of sound words.’

3. ὑπόδειγμα (from ὑποδεικνύναι, ‘to show,’ with the suggestion of placing what is shown under the very eyes) is properly a thing exhibited as an example or pattern. In this sense the word is used several times in the NT (e.g. John 13:15, ‘I have given you an example’; James 5:10, ‘an example of suffering affliction’). The AV_ takes it in this sense in Hebrews 9:23 and renders ‘patterns.’ But ὑπόδειγμα, like τύπος, may denote a copy as well as a pattern; and in rendering ‘copies’ here the RV_ clearly conveys the correct idea, since the things referred to are ‘the tabernacle and all the vessels of the ministry’ (Hebrews 9:21), which were only copies of ‘the heavenly things themselves.’ Cf. Hebrews 8:5, where the RV_ rightly changes ‘the example (ὑποδείγματι) and shadow of heavenly things’ into ‘a copy and shadow of the heavenly things.’

4. ἀντίτυπα (Hebrews 9:24) is probably to be taken as an adjective rather than a substantive (ἀντίτυπος = ‘answering to the type,’ ‘corresponding to the pattern,’ no doubt with reference to the τύπος of Hebrews 8:5; see above). The RV_, ‘like in pattern to the true,’ is therefore to be preferred to the AV_, ‘the figures of the true.’

J. C. Lambert.

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These files are public domain.
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Bibliography Information
Hastings, James. Entry for 'Pattern'. Hastings' Dictionary of the New Testament. 1906-1918.

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