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Fausset's Bible Dictionary

 

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Rabbi
        

("great.") Simeon (identified by some with him who took the infant Jesus in his arms: Luke 2:25 ff) son of Hillel, shortly before Christ, was the first doctor of the law with the title Rabban (higher than Rabbi), Rabbi (higher than Rab). The disciples applied it to Christ (Mark 9:5; Mark 11:21; Mark 14:45; John 1:38; John 1:50; John 3:2; John 4:31; John 6:25; John 9:2; John 11:8; John 13:13). Christ's prohibition of the title to the disciples (Matthew 23:7-8) is against using it in the spirit of exercising dominion over the faith of others. The triune God is the only "Father," "Master" (katheegeetes, guide, Romans 2:19; contrast John 16:13), "Teacher" (didaskalos Vaticanus manuscript Matthew 23:8) in the highest sense; on Him alone can implicit trust be placed. All are "brethren " before Him, none by office or precedence nearer to God than another. Rabboni (John 20:16) is simply "Master," the -i final in John's translated not meaning "my", as it often does.


Bibliography Information
Fausset, Andrew Robert M.A., D.D., "Definition for 'Rabbi' Fausset's Bible Dictionary".
bible-history.com - Fausset's; 1878.

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