New Testament Word Studies - Aphiemi, Charizomai

David Gooding, Ipswich

Part 5 of 11 of the series New Testament Word Studies

BOTH THESE WORDS ARE USED to express the idea of forgiveness. Apliiemi, the more common of the two, means basically to let go, to send away, and so when used to express forgiveness it signifies remission, as in Matthew 6. 12. 'Forgive us our debts (i.e., remit them, do not exact payment) as we have forgiven our debtors (i.e. as we have let go, not exacted payment of (the debts) where our debtors are concerned)'.
Charizomai, which also can mean, among other things, to forgive, is a more colourful word. Basically it means to show oneself to be gracious, then to give something freely or graciously as a favour: so in Luke 7. 21, 'and to the blind he granted sight'. So also in Galatians 3. 18 we read that God has given the inheritance to Abraham by an act of grace and favour and altogether apart from the works of the law (see also Rom. 4. 13). Finally it is used for remitting a debt, forgiving a trespass, as in Colossians 2. 13, where the emphasis is on the unmerited grace that cancels the debt.
Both words are used in the story in Luke 7. 40-50. When the debtors were unable to pay, the creditor frankly forgave: charizomai is used because it was an act of undeserved grace and favour, a meaning that the Authorized Version attempted to bring out by adding 'frankly' to 'forgave'. In verses 47 and 48 aphiemi is used and here the emphasis is on the remission and discharge. This remission, too, was of course an act of absolute grace and favour and not in any way earned by the woman's love. The parable shows that the debtors loved because they had been forgiven: they were not forgiven because they loved. Similarly with the woman: the Lord said, Wherefore I say unto you, Her sins, her many sins (not, as the Authorized Version, her sins which are many; there is no word representing 'are' in the Greek) have been forgiven (the tense is perfect). The 'Wherefore' is to be taken closely with the 'I say unto you'. Christ is not telling Simon why the woman has been forgiven, but He was appealing to evidence that Simon could appreciate, to corroborate the truth of His statement that the woman had been forgiven. Thus: debtors, when forgiven their debts, love. This woman was a debtor, but now she loves. Wherefore, on this showing, I say she has been forgiven.

There are 12 articles in
ISSUE (1962, Volume 13 Issue 1)

1962

David - The King of God’s Choice

The Deity of Christ

Regarding Elders

How are we to understand the title Firstborn as applied to our Lord?

Dr John Heading

The Incarnation

New Testament Word Studies - Aphiemi, Charizomai

Prayer

Second Corinthians

The Spiritual Growth of the Believer

No admittance Work in Progress

There are 11 articles in this series

New Testament Word Studies - Introductory Note

New Testament Word Studies - Phroneo

New Testament Word Studies - Nous

New Testament Word Studies - Hypomeno, Hypomone

New Testament Word Studies - Dokimion, Dokimos, Adokimos

New Testament Word Studies - Aphiemi, Charizomai

New Testament Word Studies - Brephos, Teknion, Paidion, Nepios

New Testament Word Studies - Teknon, Huios

New Testament Word Studies - Parakoe, Apeitheia

New Testament Word Studies - Anatrepho, Ektrepho, Paideou, Paideia

New Testament Word Studies - Hypostasis, Elenchos, Plerophoria, Parrhesia, Tharreo

There are 17 articles by this author

According to Luke

Windows on Paradise

Windows on Paradise

According to Luke

The True Peacemaker and Benefactor of the People

Modern Translations - Their Use and Abuse

New Testament Word Studies - Introductory Note

New Testament Word Studies - Phroneo

New Testament Word Studies - Nous

New Testament Word Studies - Hypomeno, Hypomone

New Testament Word Studies - Aphiemi, Charizomai

New Testament Word Studies - Brephos, Teknion, Paidion, Nepios

New Testament Word Studies - Teknon, Huios

New Testament Word Studies - Parakoe, Apeitheia

New Testament Word Studies - Anatrepho, Ektrepho, Paideou, Paideia

New Testament Word Studies - Hypostasis, Elenchos, Plerophoria, Parrhesia, Tharreo

New Testament Word Studies - Dokimion, Dokimos, Adokimos