New Testament Word Studies - Hypomeno, Hypomone
David Gooding, Ipswich
THE VERB hypomeno, means
a. 'to stay behind' as in Luke 2. 43 - 'the boy Jesus tarried behind';
b. 'to remain', i.e., not to recede or run away: hence 'to endure' trials and tribulations or rigorous tasks, e.g., Heb. 10. 32,'. . . you endured a great light of afflictions'; 1 Peter 2. 20,'. . . ye take it patiently'. Similarly the noun hypomone is used of 'patient enduring' of suffering, 2 Cor. 1. 6; and of 'patient endurance', i.e., perseverance, in well doing, Rom. 2. 7. More frequently it stands by itself to denote 'patience', not as the opposite of impatience or short-temperedness, but as the opposite of giving up.
The Scriptures indicate that we need this quality at various levels of our Christian experience. We need it in trials so that God may use them as educative discipline: so Heb. 12. 7, R.V., 'It is for chastening that ye endure'. We need it in face of rigours of service as did Paul who confessed that 'he endured all things for the elect's sake that they also might obtain the salvation which is in Christ Jesus . . .', and who further comforted Timothy with the promise that 'if we endure (A.V., suffer) we shall also reign with him', 2 Tim. 2. 10-12.
But at the most basic level, we need endurance in refusing to abandon our faith in Christ and His Word whatever happens. So in the parable, Luke 8. 15, the good seed is those who . . . having heard the word, hold it fast and bring forth fruit with endurance (patience), without endurance it would, in fact, be impossible to bear any fruit at all.
In this context the words of Romans 5. 3 are most encouraging. When a man has been justified by faith, he need not fear that tribulation may break his faith, for tribulation worketh patience, i.e., not long-temperedness or absence of irritability, but endurance in the faith. Knowing this we may joy in, i.e., exult confidently in, our tribulations even though we do not enjoy them.