Thursday, January 28, 2010

Clamor

Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice. (Eph. 4:31)

Last night, after reading this verse during our Bible Study at church, one of our church members asked the question, “What is clamor?”

In English, “clamor” is defined by Webster as (1a) noisy shouting (1b) a loud continuous noise (2) insistent public expression (like during a protest)

In Greek, the definition is similar. The Greek word in Eph. 4:31 translated “clamor” is krauge . It is a fairly uncommon word (used only 6x in the NT) meaning “a loud cry or call, shout.” According to the BDAG lexicon, it can speak of the clamour of excited persons, shouting back and forth in a quarrel.

Vine says krauge is an onomatopoeic word, imitating the raven’s cry, akin to krazo and kraugazo, “to cry,” denoting “an outcry,” “clamor.” (Can’t you just hear those ravens cawing and crying and shouting krauge angrily at each another, fighting over that little remaining piece of roadkill?)

This same word krauge is used over in Acts 23:9 of the scene in Jerusalem after Paul was arrested: “And there occurred a great uproar; and some of the scribes of the Pharisaic party stood up and began to argue heatedly, saying, ‘We find nothing wrong with this man; suppose a spirit or an angel has spoken to him?’”

Raised voices. Loud cries. Shouts. An uproar. Does this kind of clamorous talk describe your communication? Paul says let it all be put away from you. Instead, “be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving each other, just as God in Christ also has forgiven you.” (Eph. 4:32)

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