Fear – Deuteronomy, Part 3

This very day, yehôvâh (יהוה) said to Moses, I will begin to fill all the people of the earth with dread and to terrify them when they hear about you.  They will shiver and shake in anticipation of your approach.[1]  This very day was past as Moses recounted Israel’s history, the not-so-distant past, after all the military men had been eliminated from the community.[2]  The Hebrew word translated and to terrify was yirʼâh (ויראתך), the word I had hoped would distinguish the fear of the Lord from ordinary fear.  It was off to a good start.

When Abimelech confronted Abraham for misleading him whether Sarah was his wife, Abraham said, “Because I thought, ‘Surely no one fears (yirʼâh, יראת) God (ʼĕlôhı̂ym, אלהים) in this place.’”[3]  Abraham assumed that those who did not fear God would kill him to take his beautiful wife and those who fear God would not.  But he had completely misjudged Abimelech, who feared God very much (Genesis 20:2-7 NET):

Abraham said about his wife Sarah, “She is my sister.”  So Abimelech, king of Gerar, sent for Sarah and took her.  But God (ʼĕlôhı̂ym, אלהים) appeared to Abimelech in a dream at night and said to him, “You are as good as dead because of the woman you have taken, for she is someone else’s wife.”  Now Abimelech had not gone near her.  He said, “Lord (ʼădônây, אדני), would you really slaughter an innocent nation?  Did Abraham not say to me, ‘She is my sister’?  And she herself said, ‘He is my brother.’  I have done this with a clear conscience and with innocent hands!”

Then in the dream God (ʼĕlôhı̂ym, האלהים) replied to him, “Yes, I know that you have done this with a clear conscience.  That is why I have kept you from sinning against me and why I did not allow you to touch her.  But now give back the man’s wife.  Indeed he is a prophet and he will pray for you; thus you will live.  But if you don’t give her back, know that you will surely die along with all who belong to you.”

The next morning when Abimelech told his servants about the dream they were terrified (yârêʼ, וייראו + meʼôd).[4]  Abimelech’s yirʼâh was no mere emotion but resulted in concrete acts (Genesis 20:14-18 NET):

So Abimelech gave sheep, cattle, and male and female servants to Abraham.  He also gave his wife Sarah back to him.  Then Abimelech said, “Look, my land is before you; live wherever you please.”

To Sarah he said, “Look, I have given a thousand pieces of silver to your ‘brother.’  This is compensation for you so that you will stand vindicated before all who are with you.”

Abraham prayed to God, and God healed Abimelech, as well as his wife and female slaves so that they were able to have children.  For the Lord (yehôvâh, יהוה) had caused infertility to strike every woman in the household of Abimelech because he took Sarah, Abraham’s wife.

If this were the only mention of yirʼâh I would say that fearing God is the answer, no need for Jesus to die.  So long as people fear God and He intercedes with a threatening dream and yehôvâh inflicts limited reversible bodily harm the kingdom of God can last forever as a police state.  But I’m probably extrapolating too far.  Realistically, this fear and threatening dream and reversible bodily harm prevented one adultery.  That is a long way from universal righteousness.

God (ʼĕlôhı̂ym, אלהים) spoke all these words: “I, the Lord (yehôvâh, יהוה), am your God (ʼĕlôhı̂ym, אלהיך), who brought you from the land of Egypt, from the house of slavery.[5]  After yehôvâh spoke the ten commandments, Moses said to the people, “Do not fear (yârêʼ, תיראו), for God has come to test you, that the fear (yirʼâh, יראתו) of him may be before you so that you do not sin.”[6]  The commandments begin (Exodus 20:3-6 NET):

“You shall have no other gods (ʼĕlôhı̂ym, אלהים) before me.

“You shall not make for yourself a carved image or any likeness of anything that is in heaven above or that is on the earth beneath or that is in the water below.  You shall not bow down to them or serve them, for I, the Lord (yehôvâh, יהוה), your God (ʼĕlôhı̂ym, אלהיך), am a jealous God (ʼêl, אל), responding to the transgression of fathers by dealing with children to the third and fourth generations of those who reject me, and showing covenant faithfulness to a thousand generations of those who love (ʼâhab, לאהבי) me and keep my commandments.”

The first occurrence of ʼâhab in the Bible was Abraham’s love (אהבת; Genesis 22:2) for Sarah’s son Isaac.  Isaac loved (ויאהבה; Genesis 24:67) Rebekah and (ויאהב; Genesis 25:28) Esau his son while Rebekah loved (אהבת) his brother Jacob.  Isaac also had a love (אהבתי; Genesis 27:4 – אהב; Genesis 27:9 – אהב; Genesis 27:14) for tasty food.  Jacob had fallen in love (ויאהב; Genesis 29:18) with Rachel.  Working for her father for seven years to acquire her seemed like only a few days to him because his love (באהבתו; Genesis 29:20) for her was so great.  Jacob loved (ויאהב; Genesis 29:30) Rachel more than Leah.  After she gave birth to Reuben, Leah thought surely Jacob will love (יאהבני; Genesis 29:32) me now, but he loved (אהב; Genesis 37:3) Joseph, Rachel’s firstborn, more than all his sonsWhen Joseph’s brothers saw that their father loved (ʼâhab, אהב) him more than any of them, they hated Joseph and were not able to speak to him kindly.[7]  They got rid of Joseph but acknowledged to him years later (though they didn’t recognize him yet) their father’s love for his younger brother Benjamin (Genesis 44:20 NET):

We have an aged father, and there is a young boy who was born when our father was old.  The boy’s brother is dead.  He is the only one of his mother’s sons left, and his father loves (ʼâhab, אהבו) him.

Introduced here in the ten commandments just as the forty-day limit of the yirʼâh of God to restrain sin was about to be made evident, the partiality of Jacob’s ʼâhab, his love for a favorite wife and favorite sons, would have been a step in the right direction if his descendants had loved yehôvâh as their favorite God and kept his commandments.  If you love me, Jesus told his disciples, you will obey my commandments.[8]  I spent too much of my life trying to obey his commandments to prove that I loved Him.  But here I want to contrast this statement to his former statement in the ten commandments.

Exodus 20:6 (NET)

Septuagint John 14:15 (NET)

Parallel Greek

…who love me and keep my commandments. ἀγαπῶσίν με καὶ τοῖς φυλάσσουσιν τὰ προστάγματά[9] μου If you love me, you will obey my commandments. Ἐὰν ἀγαπᾶτε με, τὰς ἐντολὰς (a form of ἐντολή) τὰς ἐμὰς τηρήσετε

Under law love me and keep my commandments are joined by the conjunction and (Greek: καὶ), two different things on my to-do list.  Under grace you will obey my commandments is a promise predicated on if you love me.  The difference is the meaning of love, not the difference of the meaning of ʼâhab in Hebrew and ἀγαπάω in Greek.  Both ἀγαπῶσιν and ἀγαπᾶτε above are forms of ἀγαπάω.[10]    But ʼâhab (translated ἀγαπῶσιν) was used to describe the partial love[11] of human beings before it occurred in the ten commandments, while ἀγαπᾶτε was used to describe God’s love, the fruit of his Spirit[12] which is patient, kind, not envious, does not brag, is not puffed up or rude, not self-serving, easily angered or resentful, not glad about injustice, but rejoices in the truth, bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things and never ends.[13]  I didn’t appreciate this difference either the first time I read John’s Gospel narrative.

The word keep above is a translation of the Hebrew word shâmar (ולשמרי).  It was translated φυλάσσουσιν (a form of φυλάσσω) in Greek in the Septuagint.  And φυλάσσουσιν was translated doobey in the NET: For those who are circumcised do not obey (φυλάσσουσιν, a form of φυλάσσω) the law themselves, but they want you to be circumcised so that they can boast about your flesh.[14]  This is not a particularly common translation, more often translated keep in English.  The NET translators chose obey for forms of φυλάσσω any time it made any sense at all.

Jesus, for instance, didn’t pray that He had obeyed (ἐφύλαξα, another form of φυλάσσω) his disciples, but that He had watched over them.  A strong man, fully armed does not keep his possessions safe when he obeys (φυλάσσῃ, another form of φυλάσσω) his own palace, but when he guards it.  Apart from the obvious exceptions, however, I have no particular objection to translating φυλάσσω obey.  Translating forms of τηρέω obey is a bit more problematic: If you love me, you will obey (τηρήσετε, a form of τηρέω) my commandments.[15]

Again there are obvious counter examples: Jesus did not obey (ἐτήρουν, another form of τηρέω) his disciples, He kept them safe.  Mary did not obey (τηρήσῃ, another form of τηρέω) three quarters of a pound of expensive aromatic oil from pure nard,[16] She has kept it for the day of my burial,[17] Jesus said.  But there are a few other examples that were not translated obey for no apparent reason except to protect (or, obey) the sensibilities of late 20th century pre-tribulation rapture-believing Protestants, to keep them in the fold, so to speak.

Revelation 3:8 (NET)

Revelation 3:10 (NET)

I know that you have little strength, but you have obeyed my word and have not denied my name. Because you have kept my admonition to endure steadfastly, I will also keep you from the hour of testing that is about to come on the whole world to test those who live on the earth.

Both you have obeyed and you have kept are translations of the same Greek word ἐτήρησας (another form of τηρέω).  I’ll ignore for the moment that both of these statements were addressed to the singular angel of the church in Philadelphia[18] and deal with them as I had commonly assumed.  (I’m also assuming that the NET translators wanted to translate τηρέω obey as often as possible.)  The clause you have obeyed my word is possible if I take Jesus’ word to be his answer to the question—What must we do to accomplish the deeds God requires?[19]This is the deed God requires – to believe in the one whom he sent.[20]  Even when I believed that faith originated from me rather than an aspect of the fruit of his Spirit, I was more or less comfortable thinking of my faith as my obedience.

There is little more frightening to one who does not know the power and presence of the Holy Spirit than an admonition (λόγον, a form of λόγος; translated word above) to endure steadfastly.  “You have obeyed my word to endure steadfastly” (in my own strength and faithfulness) would have seemed a little too steep a price to escape the great tribulation.  Because you have kept my admonition to endure steadfastly is not that different, really, but it would have felt a little less works oriented to me when I did not yet know the power and presence of the Holy Spirit.

I may have balked at hearing Jesus say, if you want to enter into life, obey (τήρησον, another form of τηρέω) the commandments.  Or if John had written, by this we know that we have come to know God: if we obey (τηρῶμεν, another form of τηρέω) his commandments.  And, whatever we ask we receive from him, because we obey (τηροῦμεν, another form of τηρέω) his commandments and do the things that are pleasing to him.  Or, the person who obeys (τηρῶν, another form of τηρέω) his commandments resides in God, and God in himFor this is the love of God: that we obey (τηρῶμεν, another form of τηρέω) his commandments.  Of course, the NET translators did translate τηροῦντες (another form of τηρέω) so as to define saints as those who obey God’s commandments and hold to their faith in Jesus.[21]

On the Christian & Missionary Alliance webpage entitled “Sanctification” I read an amazing confession that “most Christians do not understand or experience…the fullness of the Holy Spirit in their lives.”  I don’t want to hit this too hard since I imagine[22] that other Christian religions experience a similar phenomenon whether they confess it or not.  In one sense I’m gratified that my problem is shared by over half of Christians.  Two causes were cited: 1) we “have been badly taught,” or 2) we “have chosen to disregard the clear teaching of the New Testament regarding sanctification.”  That diagnosis, however, lights a clear path to a prescription: better teaching on the passages of Scripture that explain that we “can’t make ourselves holy any more than we can make ourselves saved” and that “Christ is our Sanctifier in the same way that He is our Savior.”

While I’m not opposed generally to translating φυλάσσω or τηρέω obey, to also translate ὑπακούω obey causes me to wonder.  One of the reasons I enjoy the NET translation is that it feels like the translators and I grew up in the same socially constructed reality and the same religious milieu.  What was the impetus to translate all three words obey?  Were they pushed by that same impatient just do it attitude I encountered when I tried to discuss my early hesitant and tentative ideas about what the New Testament, Paul in particular, taught about righteousness?  Paul and the Holy Spirit were careful to distinguish Old Testament guarding and keeping from New Testament hearing with faith.

I heard a pastor recently (a Baptist not CM&A) say, “The Holy Spirit doesn’t stop me from sinning, just convicts me when I do.”  I gave him the benefit of the doubt at the time that he didn’t mean exactly what he had said.  His preaching style is so haphazard and stream-of-consciousness it might have meant anything:



Trusting Jesus as I do, believing what I believe, knowing what I know, why does sin ever erupt from this constitution of parts I call meWretched man that I am!  Who will rescue me from this body of death?[23] The particular “sin” he had in mind but didn’t confess was man-made and of no concern to the Holy Spirit.

But what if I were still struggling with the concept of sanctification by faith?  What if I had taken his words at face value and believed them?  Would I have believed that—Everyone who has been fathered by God does not practice sin, because God’s seed resides in him, and thus he is not able to sin, because he has been fathered by God[24]—was false?  Possibly, maybe even gratefully for a time.  But then the Holy Spirit would have kept after me, reminding me of Scriptures that contradicted the Pastor’s words (and my conclusions based on them), prodding me on with love, joy, peace, patience, kindness. goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and his control until I saw yehôvâh/Jesus again, Love Himself, leading me patiently, kindly, not hatefully, not bragging, not puffed up or rude, not self-serving, not easily angered or resentful, not glad about injustice, but rejoicing in the truth, bearing all things, believing all things, hoping all things, enduring all things and never failing, until the very verse I thought condemned me became first a promise filled with hope, until that day it becomes a truth in actual fact.

In this particular case there was never a real issue for me.  And I can increase attendance at this Pastor’s church by as much as 25% when I show up.  So maybe any problem of this sort is self-correcting.  Still, I wonder whether the greater than half of Christians who “do not understand or experience…the fullness of the Holy Spirit in their lives” fill the pews only.  My children, Paul penned the church in Galatia over this very issue, I am again undergoing birth pains until Christ is formed in you![25] 

I’ll pick this up again in another essay.  The tables I created to study φυλάσσω, τηρέω and ὑπακούω follow.

Forms of φυλάσσω Reference

NET Translation

ἐφύλαξα Matthew 19:20 The young man said to him, “I have wholeheartedly obeyed all these laws.”
Luke 18:21 The man replied, “I have wholeheartedly obeyed all these laws since my youth.”
John 17:12 When I was with them I kept them safe and watched over them in your name…
ἐφυλαξάμην Mark 10:20 The man said to him, “Teacher, I have wholeheartedly obeyed all these laws since my youth.”
ἐφυλάξατε Acts 7:53 You received the law by decrees given by angels, but you did not obey it.
ἐφύλαξεν 2 Peter 2:5 …and if he did not spare the ancient world, but did protect Noah, a herald of righteousness…
φυλάσσῃ Luke 11:21 When a strong man, fully armed, guards his own palace, his possessions are safe.
Romans 2:26 …if the uncircumcised man obeys the righteous requirements of the law…
φυλάσσειν Acts 12:4 …he put him in prison, handing him over to four squads of soldiers to guard him.
Acts 16:4 …they passed on the decrees that had been decided on by the apostles and elders in Jerusalem for the Gentile believers to obey.
φυλάσσεσθαι Acts 21:25 …we have written a letter, having decided that they should avoid meat that has been sacrificed to idols…
Acts 23:35 Then he ordered that Paul be kept under guard in Herod’s palace.
φυλάσσεσθε Luke 12:15 Watch out and guard yourself from all types of greed…
2 Peter 3:17 be on your guard that you do not get led astray by the error of these unprincipled men…
φυλάσσων Acts 21:24 …but that you yourself live in conformity with the law.
Acts 22:20 …approving, and guarding the cloaks of those who were killing him.
φυλασσόμενος Luke 8:29 …bound with chains and shackles and kept under guard
φυλάσσοντες Luke 2:8 …living out in the field, keeping guard over their flock at night.
Luke 11:28 Blessed rather are those who hear the word of God and obey it!
φυλάσσοντι Acts 28:16 Paul was allowed to live by himself, with the soldier who was guarding him.
φυλάσσου 2 Timothy 4:15 You be on guard against him too, because he vehemently opposed our words.
φυλάσσουσιν Galatians 6:13 For those who are circumcised do not obey the law themselves…
φυλάξαι 2 Timothy 1:12 I am convinced that he is able to protect what has been entrusted to me…
Jude 1:24 Now to the one who is able to keep you from falling, and to cause you to stand, rejoicing, without blemish before his glorious presence…
φυλάξατε 1 John 5:21 Little children, guard yourselves from idols.
φυλάξῃ John 12:47 If anyone hears my words and does not obey them, I do not judge him.
φυλάξῃς 1 Timothy 5:21 Before God and Christ Jesus and the elect angels, I solemnly charge you to carry out these commands without prejudice or favoritism of any kind.
φυλάξει John 12:25 …the one who hates his life in this world guards it for eternal life.
2 Thessalonians 3:3 But the Lord is faithful, and he will strengthen you and protect you from the evil one.
φύλαξον 1 Timothy 6:20 O Timothy, protect what has been entrusted to you.
2 Timothy 1:14 Protect that good thing entrusted to you, through the Holy Spirit who lives within us.


Forms of τηρέω Reference

NET Translation

ἐτήρησα 2 Corinthians 11:9 I kept myself from being a burden to you in any way…
ἐτήρησαν John 15:20 If they obeyed my word…
ἐτήρησας Revelation 3:8 …but you have obeyed my word and have not denied my name.
Revelation 3:10 Because you have kept my admonition to endure steadfastly…
ἐτηρεῖτο Acts 12:5 So Peter was kept in prison…
ἐτήρουν Matthew 27:36 Then they sat down and kept guard over him there.
John 17:12 When I was with them I kept them safe and watched over them in your name…
Acts 12:6 …while guards in front of the door were keeping watch over the prison.
τηρῇ 1 John 2:5 But whoever obeys his word, truly in this person the love of God has been perfected.
τηρῆσαι 1 Timothy 6:14 to obey this command without fault or failure until the appearing of our Lord Jesus Christ…
τηρήσαντας Jude 1:6 …the angels who did not keep within their proper domain…
τηρήσατε Jude 1:21 maintain yourselves in the love of God, while anticipating the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ that brings eternal life.
τηρήσῃ John 8:51 …if anyone obeys my teaching, he will never see death.
John 8:52 …you say, ‘If anyone obeys my teaching, he will never experience death.’
John 12:7 Leave her alone.  She has kept it for the day of my burial.
James 2:10 For the one who obeys the whole law but fails in one point has become guilty of all of it.
τηρήσῃς John 17:15 I am not asking you to take them out of the world, but that you keep them safe from the evil one.
τηρήσητε John 15:10 If you obey my commandments, you will remain in my love…
τηρήσει John 14:23 If anyone loves me, he will obey my word…
τηρήσετε John 14:15 If you love me, you will obey my commandments.
τηρήσω 2 Corinthians 11:9 …a burden to you in any way, and will continue to do so.
Revelation 3:10 …I will also keep you from the hour of testing that is about to come on the whole world…
τήρησον Matthew 19:17 But if you want to enter into life, keep the commandments.
John 17:11 Holy Father, keep them safe in your name that you have given me…
τηρήσουσιν John 15:20 they will obey yours too.
τηρηθῆναι Acts 25:21 But when Paul appealed to be kept in custody for the decision of His Majesty…
τηρηθείη 1 Thessalonians 5:23 …may your spirit and soul and body be kept entirely blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.
τηρεῖ John 9:16 This man is not from God, because he does not observe the Sabbath.
John 14:24 The person who does not love me does not obey my words.
1 Timothy 5:22 Keep yourself pure.
1 John 5:18 God protects the one he has fathered, and the evil one cannot touch him.
Revelation 3:3 Therefore, remember what you received and heard, and obey it, and repent.
τηρεῖν Matthew 28:20 …teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you.
Acts 15:5 It is necessary to circumcise the Gentiles and to order them to observe the law…
Acts 16:23 …they threw them into prison and commanded the jailer to guard them securely.
1 Corinthians 7:37 …and has decided in his own mind to keep his own virgin, does well.
Ephesians 4:3 …making every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.
James 1:27 …to care for orphans and widows in their misfortune and to keep oneself unstained by the world.
2 Peter 2:9 …and to reserve the unrighteous for punishment at the day of judgment…
τηρεῖσθαι Acts 24:23 He ordered the centurion to guard Paul…
Acts 25:4 Then Festus replied that Paul was being kept at Caesarea…
Acts 25:21 I ordered him to be kept under guard until I could send him to Caesar.
τηρεῖτε Matthew 23:3 Therefore pay attention to what they tell you and do it.
τηρῶ John 8:55 But I do know him, and I obey his teaching.
τηρῶμεν 1 John 2:3 …we have come to know [him]: if we keep his commandments.
1 John 5:3 For this is the love of God: that we keep his commandments.
τηρῶν John 14:21 The person who has my commandments and obeys them is the one who loves me.
1 John 2:4 The one who says “I have come to know [him]” and yet does not keep his commandments is a liar…
1 John 3:24 And the person who keeps his commandments resides in [him]…
Revelation 2:26 And to the one who conquers and who continues in my deeds until the end…
Revelation 16:15 Blessed is the one who stays alert and does not lose his clothes…
Revelation 22:7 Blessed is the one who keeps the words of the prophecy expressed in this book.
τηροῦμεν 1 John 3:22 …whatever we ask we receive from him, because we keep his commandments and do the things that are pleasing to him.
τηρούμενοι 2 Peter 3:7 But by the same word the present heavens and earth have been reserved for fire, by being kept for the day of judgment and destruction of the ungodly.
τηρουμένους 2 Peter 2:4 …but threw them into hell and locked them up in chains in utter darkness, to be kept until the judgment…
τηροῦντες Matthew 27:54 Now when the centurion and those with him who were guarding Jesus…
Matthew 28:4 The guards were shaken and became like dead men because they were so afraid of him.
Revelation 1:3 …blessed are those who hear and obey the things written in it, because the time is near!
Revelation 14:12 This requires the steadfast endurance of the saints – those who obey God’s commandments and hold to their faith in Jesus.
τηρούντων Revelation 12:17 …the rest of her children, those who keep God’s commandments and hold to the testimony about Jesus.
Revelation 22:9 I am a fellow servant with you and with your brothers the prophets, and with those who obey the words of this book.
τετήρηκα John 15:10 …just as I have obeyed my Father’s commandments and remain in his love.
2 Timothy 4:7 I have competed well; I have finished the race; I have kept the faith!
τετήρηκαν John 17:6 They belonged to you, and you gave them to me, and they have obeyed your word.
τετήρηκας John 2:10 You have kept the good wine until now!
τετήρηκεν Jude 1:6 he has kept in eternal chains in utter darkness, locked up for the judgment of the great Day.
τετηρημένην 1 Peter 1:4 …an inheritance imperishable, undefiled, and unfading.  It is reserved in heaven for you…
τετηρημένοις Jude 1:1 …those who are called, wrapped in the love of God the Father and kept for Jesus Christ.
τετήρηται 2 Peter 2:17 …for whom the utter depths of darkness have been reserved.
Jude 1:13 …wayward stars for whom the utter depths of eternal darkness have been reserved.


Forms of ὑπακούω Reference

NET Translation

ὑπακούει Mark 4:41 Who then is this?  Even the wind and sea obey him!
2 Thessalonians 3:14 But if anyone does not obey our message through this letter…
ὑπακούειν Romans 6:12 …do not let sin reign in your mortal body so that you obey its desires…
ὑπακούετε Romans 6:16 …you are slaves of the one you obey, either of sin resulting in death, or…
Ephesians 6:1 Children, obey your parents in the Lord for this is right.
Ephesians 6:5 Slaves, obey your human masters with fear and trembling, in the sincerity of your heart as to Christ…
Colossians 3:20 Children, obey your parents in everything, for this is pleasing in the Lord.
Colossians 3:22 Slaves, obey your earthly masters in every respect, not only when they are watching…
ὑπακούουσιν Matthew 8:27 What sort of person is this?  Even the winds and the sea obey him!
Mark 1:27 A new teaching with authority!  He even commands the unclean spirits and they obey him.
Luke 8:25 Who then is this?  He commands even the winds and the water, and they obey him!
2 Thessalonians 1:8 those who do not know God and do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus.
Hebrews 5:9 …he became the source of eternal salvation to all who obey him…
ὑπακοῦσαι Acts 12:13 When he knocked at the door of the outer gate, a slave girl named Rhoda answered.
ὑπήκουον Acts 6:7 …and a large group of priests became obedient to the faith.
ὑπήκουσαν Romans 10:16 But not all have obeyed the good news, for Isaiah says…
ὑπηκούσατε Romans 6:17 you obeyed from the heart that pattern of teaching you were entrusted to…
Philippians 2:12 …just as you have always obeyed, not only in my presence but even more in my absence…
ὑπήκουσεν Luke 17:6 …‘Be pulled out by the roots and planted in the sea,’ and it would obey you.
Hebrews 11:8 By faith Abraham obeyed when he was called to go out to a place he would later receive as an inheritance…
1 Peter 3:6 …like Sarah who obeyed Abraham, calling him lord. You become her children…

[1] Deuteronomy 2:25 (NET)

[2] Deuteronomy 2:16 (NET)

[3] Genesis 20:11a (NET)

[4] Genesis 20:8 (NET)

[5] Exodus 20:1, 2 (NET)

[6] Exodus 20:20 (NET)

[7] Genesis 37:4 (NET)

[8] John 14:15 (NET)

[9] http://www.perseus.tufts.edu/hopper/morph?l=prosta%2Fgmata&la=greek&can=prosta%2Fgmata0&prior=leit

[10] If you love (ἀγαπᾶτε, a form of ἀγαπάω) those who love you, what credit (χάρις; literally graciousness, grace) is that to you?  For even sinners love those who love (ἀγαπῶσιν, another form of ἀγαπάω) them. (Luke 6:32 NET)

[11] Here I’ll add back the occurrence I removed from my survey of ʼâhab: Shechem fell in love (ויאהב; Genesis 34:3 NET) with Jacob’s daughter Dinah after he grabbed her, forced himself on her, and sexually assaulted her (Genesis 34:2 NET)

[12] Galatians 5:22, 23 (NET)

[13] 1 Corinthians 13:4-13 (NET)

[14] Galatians 6:13 (NET)

[15] John 14:15 (NET)

[16] John 12:3 (NET)

[17] John 12:7b (NET)

[18] Revelation 3:7 (NET)

[19] John 6:28 (NET)

[20] John 6:29 (NET)

[21] Revelation 14:12 (NET)

[22] I offer “Five Views on Sanctification” by Mike Sullivan as evidence for my imagining.  It’s an interesting survey of others’ struggles with sanctification.  Xenos has its critics and defenders.

[23] Romans 7:24 (NET)

[24] 1 John 3:9 (NET)

[25] Galatians 4:19 (NET)