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People's Dictionary of the Bible


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Captain. In the Old Testament the rendering of a Hebrew word generally signifying a military officer. There were various ranks, from the captains of 50 to the captain of the host (or commander-in-chief). 1 Samuel 17:18; 2 Samuel 19:13; 2 Kings 1:9; 2 Kings 11:15. Captains of the guard are also mentioned. Genesis 37:36; 2 Kings 25:8. These were military officers, charged, it would seem, with the defence of the royal person, and with the execution of sentences pronounced by the king: comp. 1 Kings 2:29-34; 1 Kings 2:46. The officer in the New Testament, called a captain in Acts 28:16, was probably the commander of the prætorian troops at Rome, but the R. V. omits the clause containing the word. There is another Hebrew word translated sometimes "captain," Joshua 10:24, A. V. ("chiefs" in the R.V.), sometimes "ruler," Isaiah 3:6, which denotes both a military and a civil officer. The captain of the temple, Luke 22:4; Acts 4:1; Acts 5:24, was not a military man, but the chief of the priests and Levites that watched in the temple at night. Comp. Psalms 134:1. The word "captain" applied to our Lord, Hebrews 2:10, has not a military signification.

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Bibliography Information
Rice, Edwin Wilbur, DD. Entry for 'Captain'. People's Dictionary of the Bible. 1893.

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Saturday, November 28th, 2020
the Week of Christ the King / Proper 29 / Ordinary 34
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