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Commentary On Hebrews by Jean Calvin


Chapter 8:1. This is the sum, etc Many think that the word kephalaion does not mean here a sum in the sense of a summary, but a principal thing. So Chrysostom understood it. Macknight's version is, |Now of the things spoken the chief is;| Stuart's is substantially the same. But the idea seems to be somewhat different: the literal rendering is, |Now the head as to the things said is,| etc.; that is, the sum total, the whole amount.

Parkhurst quotes a passage from Menander which is very similar to the first part of this verse, To de kephaliion ton logon Anthropos ei -- |But the sum of my discourse is, Thou art a man,| etc. The word means here the substance or the sum total. The word r's, read, in Hebrew, has a like meaning, the total number of the people, Exodus 30:12; Numbers 4:2

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