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Fausset's Bible Dictionary


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At first one belonging to the kingdom of Judah, as distinguished from northern Israel (2 Kings 16:6). After the captivity, all members of the one new state were "Jews," i.e. in God's outward covenant, as contrasted with "Greeks" or Gentiles (Romans 1:16; Romans 2:9, margin). "Hebrew" on the other hand expressed their language and nationality, in contrast to "Hellenists," i.e. Greek speaking Jews. Again the term" Israelites" expresses the high theocratic privileges of descent from the patriarch who "as a prince had power with God" (2 Corinthians 11:22; Romans 9:4). John uses "Jews" of the faction hostile to the Lord Jesus.

By the time that he wrote the Jews had definitely rejected the gospel offered to them by the apostles at home and abroad (1 Thessalonians 2:14-16); so they are no longer regarded as the covenant people, the kingdom of God having passed from them to the Gentiles (Acts 13:45-46) The destruction of Jerusalem and the temple formally effected the transference, forever since the Jew professes a religion enjoining what God's providence makes it impossible for him to fulfil, namely, the observance of the great feasts and the sacrificial system in the temple at Jerusalem. B. F. Westcott (Smith's Bible Dictionary) notices the preparation for the last or gospel revelation by the disciplining of the Jews under

(1) the Persian supremacy (536-333 B.C.), in organization, order, and ritual;

(2) under the Greek (333-167 B.C.), in liberty and speculation;

(3) under the Asmonsean Maccabees, in independence and faith;

(4) under the Herods, in the separation between the temporal and the spiritual kingdom. JEWRY means Judea (Daniel 5:13). "The Jews' language" signifies both the Hebrew (2 Kings 18:26) and the Aramaic Hebrew acquired in the captivity (Nehemiah 13:24), "the language (lip) of Canaan" (Isaiah 19:18). (See HEBREW LANGUAGE.)

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Bibliography Information
Fausset, Andrew R. Entry for 'Jew'. Fausset's Bible Dictionary. 1949.

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