Get aggressive about hospitality

Have I mentioned I bought Logos recently?  Let me show you and example of what this program can do, using a verse I quote in every seminar:

  • Romans 12:13b (NLT)  Always be eager to practice hospitality.

  • Romans 12:13b (NIV) Practice hospitality.

  • Romans 12:13 b (ESV) Seek to show hospitality.

The NIV is, in a way, the most straightforward translation of these three. In the Greek it is (literally) Practice the hospitality. The NIV doesn't add a lot of extra words. That is a good literal translation except for one thing. The word that is translated "practice"  (dioko) in the NIV is rarely translated "practice". Let me show you how it is translated. (I can't do this in the NIV. I am hoping when the NIV 2011 comes out we will be able to, but not yet.)



New Living

As you can see in these three translation, dioko is usually translated, "persecute." But, persecute is secondary meaning. This from Little Kittle:

1. “To impel” as a. “to set in motion” (intransitive “to ride,” “march,” “row,” or, generally, “hasten”) and b. “to persecute,” “expel,” in the papyri “to accuse,” common in the Psalms for religious persecution. In the NT we find 1.a. in Lk. 17:23: “Do not run after them,” and Phil. 3:12: “I hasten toward the goal.” But 1.b. is more common for religious persecution (e.g., Mt. 10:23; 23:34; Jn. 5:16; Acts 7:52). Persecution is a test (Mt. 5:44) and a privilege (Mt. 5:10 etc.).
2. “To follow zealously” as a. “to attach oneself to a person” or b. “to pursue or promote a cause.” -- Kittel, G., Friedrich, G., & Bromiley, G. W. (1995). Theological Dictionary of the New Testament (177). Grand Rapids, MI: W.B. Eerdmans.

The core word means to chase down. It is not hard to see how we got from there to persecute.


  • Mt 5:11 others revile you and persecute you and utter all kinds
  • Ro 14:19 So then let us pursue what makes for peace
  • Php 3:12 already perfect, but I press on to make it my own,
  •  Mt 5:10 are those who are persecuted for
  • Ro 12:14 Bless those who persecute you; bless and do
  • Php 3:6 as to zeal, a persecutor of the church; as to
    -- Exported from Logos Bible Software 4, 12:34 AM April 22, 2011.

My point of this little word study is two fold.

First, when the Bible says, "Practice hospitality," it is not saying, "Try to have tea and cookies and a fellowship dinner." It is saying to chase down hospitality like a  lion chasing its supper. Go after hospitality. This is why the NLT (thought to take the most liberty with the text) really gets it right:  Always be eager to practice hospitality.

The second point I want to make is this: you can do some really cool things with Logos. And hey, you don't even have to know any Greek.

I will be providing a lot of these kinds of insights in Good Questions Have Groups Talking. Its a great time to sign up; they are better than ever!