CHANGE - 20 Amazing Bible Words To Know: (KATALLASSO) - Part 1
Change is a deeply engrained part of what the Bible is all about. From the Old Testament to the New, God sends prophets, priests, kings, preachers, teachers and apostles to call people to change. The hearts and minds of men and women have been challenged to change their ways ever since Adam and Eve sinned and Cain and Abel followed in their sinful paths.
Change has always been difficult for most men and women. We are estranged from God. James tells us we are hostile to Him and Ephesians says that we were “dead in our trespasses and sins. It takes a willing heart and a right mind to humble ourselves before our God. Change is earth-shatteringly impossible to some, but for others it just seems that they can walk through the door of change eagerly and willingly.
The New Testament introduces us to the the Greek word, “allasso.” It means to change. To the classical Greek world, “allasso” was used to refer to simple interactions like changing money in a trade or bartering one thing for another. That’s pretty simple stuff.
But, that word came to describe something more complex when the word “kata” (which means “against” or “according to”) was added to the beginning of it. Aristotle did this to describe professional soldiers who were characterized by a willingness to “exchange their lives for trifling gain.” The idea of changing came to be understood as more of an exchange rather that a simple transformation.
It soon came to have an added element of reconciliation to it. Xenophon wrote about a man who had been at war with Cyrus but who was now his friend. He had changed somehow.
Sophocles used it to refer to someone who “makes peace with heaven.” The New Testament writers saw a picture of Christ in this word.
We will look at their use of this word tomorrow.