Enter the Time of Jesus: Vocabulary

The Garden of Olives

Abba: Hebrew word for “Father,” or “Daddy”
Adonai: Hebrew word for “Lord”
Apostle: Greek word for “to send forth”
Aramaic: The language that Jesus spoke
Centurion: Roman commander in charge of 100 soldiers
Chair of Moses: a seat of honor in the synagogue; typically for the rabbi or honored speaker
Cubit: the distance between the index finger and the elbow
Day of Atonement: A high holy day of repentance for the Jews in which the high priest atones
for sins inside the Temple
Dìakonos: Greek word for “server”
Dinar: A silver Roman coin that has Caesar’s image on it
El: The Hebrew word for a “god” or “God”
Elohim: Literally the plural of El = Gods the absolute superlative in Hebrew is made with the
plural, to say that He is the true God
Essenes: A Jewish sect. There is a theory that the Essenes were a radical sect of Jewish men who
live celibately in a community in the desert
Feast of Lights: A non-pilgrim feast that remembers the rededication of the Temple at the time
of the Maccabees. It is known in modern day as “Hannukah”
Feast of Pentecost: Also known as the Feast of Weeks, this feast commemorates the giving of
the Torah to Moses, celebrated 50 days after Passover. Only men were required to attend the
feast in Jerusalem
Feast of Tabernacles: Also known as the Feast of Booths, this feast commemorates the
Israelites journey through the wilderness under the Lord’s protection. This is just after the Day of
Atonement (a high holy day of prayer and sacrifice)
Feast of Unleavened Bread: A seven-day commemoration in which no leaven is eaten.
Preceding it is the Feast of Passover. The Hebrews had no time to let their bread rise when
leaving Egypt. Thus, they eat unleavened bread
Gehenna: A valley near Jerusalem where waste is burned. Jesus often references Gehenna as the
place of punishment/Hell
Gentiles: Non-Jews
Hebrew Shekel: Worth about two dinars and is used in the Temple, particularly for the Temple
Ima: Aramaic word for “Mother”
Kyrios: The Greek word for “Lord”
Levite: Levites are the descendants of the Tribe of Levi, one of the twelve tribes of Israel
Matzah: Unleavened bread prepared at Passover. Bread without yeast; the Israelites were not
able to let their bread rise since they left Egypt in haste
Mikveh: A “collection” of water that is used as a “bath” for ritual purification
Metera: Greek word for “Mother”
Mohar: The price paid by the father of the groom to the father of the bride
Passover: Jewish families go to Jerusalem for this feast to celebrate the passing of the Angel of Death over their ancestors in Egypt. It commemorates the Israelites freedom from slavery
through the prophet, Moses. This is a 24-hour period feast proceeding the Feast of Unleavened
Pharisee: A Jewish sect that consists of typically rich Jews who strictly follow the Torah and the
law of Moses. They have long tassels on their cloaks to show their devotion to God. They were
lay people who decided to live as priests even though they weren’t. This does not mean that they
exercised the priestly ministry. But only that they respected the same rules of purity and other
norms, living in the world as if they were to serve the Temple.
Prutah: Also known as a mite, it is the smallest unit of currency; a copper coin
Rabbi: a learned man and a leader who studies the Torah and the Tradition. Hebrew for: “my
teacher” or “my master”
Rabboni: Another name for “rabbi”
Sadducee: A Jewish sect that does not believe in the resurrection of the dead. The Sadducees are
very rich and mostly make up the chief priests. Many Jews dislike the Sadducees because they
get their riches from Rome and are “in league” with Rome. Sadducees represented the authority
of the priestly privileges and prerogatives established since the days of Solomon, when Zadok,
their ancestor, officiated as High Priest.)
Sicarii: A radical group of Jewish Zealots. They carry curved daggers beneath their cloaks and
strike and kill Romans in mass gatherings, and then disappear in the crowd
Shalom: The Hebrew word for “peace”; a greeting
Sheol: the Jewish land of the dead. It is not heaven or hell but is similar to the underworld in
Greek and Roman religions
Tallit: Jewish prayer shawl that men wear over their heads
Tetrarch: The leader of a small province. For example, Herod Antipas is the tetrarch of Galilee,
by order of Rome
Todah: means “thank you” in Hebrew. It is also a “thanksgiving offering” in Hebrew, as an
optional offering under the Law of Moses. It is a type of peace sacrifice offered in the Old
Testament and remarkably correlates with the thanksgiving sacrifice of the Catholic Holy
Sacrifice of the Mass
Traklin: A main, common room that is inside many simple homes
Trogo: Greek word for “chew” or “gnaw”
Zealot: a Jewish sect that holds the attitude and disposition of zeal that the land of Israel belongs
to God and not to Rome. Many Zealots use increasingly violent and revolutionary methods up
until the fall of Jerusalem in 70 AD

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