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Rooms or Mansions?

Rooms or Mansions?

Excerpt
The Greek word monai was rendered in the Vulgate by the Latin mansiones, which came down through the Tyndale version to the KJV as “mansions.” The use of the word “mansions” here is unfortunate because it has become infused into popular Christian culture so that one can hear some Christians speaking about the fact that they have “a mansion just over the hilltop.” Such a concept, unfortunately, supports the Western economic notion that following Jesus will lead to economic prosperity either in this life or in the life to come, especially if one must suffer in this life. But such a concept fails for several reasons. First, God does not promise economic prosperity. Second, the idea is a typical Semitic word picture describing a relationship of God with the people of God like the picture of heaven in Revelation 21–22. Third, and most importantly, monaidoes not mean a castle-like home anymore than mansiones in the Vulgate is to be interpreted in that manner. The word is derived from the Greek verb menein, “to remain,” and monai means “dwelling” or “abiding” places. So if the monai are in God’s house, the NIV’s “rooms,” or perhaps “apartments” or “flats,” would be much closer to the meaning of the text here. More
Borchert, Gerald L. John 12–21. Vol. 25B. Nashville: Broadman & Holman Publishers, 2002. Print. The New American Commentary.
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