Understanding the words used in the Bible is important. Here are three lists - Words, People, and Places. These lists will help you to read and understand the Bible. Any word on this site with an * beside it is defined in these lists.
A name for God. He has great power. No one is stronger than God. He has no enemy that can defeat him. He overcomes all who oppose him.
A table (usually stone) where the priests burned animals and gave other gifts as a sacrifice* to God or false gods; a high structure with a flat top on which to put a sacrifice* to God or a false god; the ‘holy table’.
A person from your family who lived long ago.
A spirit* being. They serve God. They bring his messages to people. An angel does good to help the people who trust* in God and are part of God’s family. Some angels fell away from God. These bad angels are called evil* spirits. They are working for Satan*.
To mark a person with oil to show that they are chosen for God; to be marked by the Holy Spirit*. The priests and the first kings of Israel had oil put on them when they were chosen.
A man chosen by God to lead his church*; one of the 12 men Jesus chose to be his special helpers; one sent to bring a message; any of the 12 witnesses Jesus Christ sent to preach* his gospel*.
A box made of wood. Moses kept the laws God gave him in this special box. The priest put the box in the holiest place in the temple. The boat Noah built was also called an ark.
A teacher or leader puts someone under the water for a moment. Then the person is brought up from the water. In this way we show that we believe the message. We have turned from our sin*. God has made us clean. After Jesus rose from the grave, this was the way to show that we belong to Christ and his church*.
To follow something that you are sure is true; to trust someone; to have confidence in someone. I trust someone when I depend on what they say to be true.
A person who knows and accepts Jesus as Lord*; a person who trusts*Jesus.
Another name for the scripture*; the writings of the prophets* and the apostles*; all of the books of the Old and New Testament*.
To say or do something good for someone; to speak well of someone; to give things to someone to honour them; to ask God to do good to someone; to call for good things to happen to someone; to set someone apart for special benefit.
A word to call someone who receives many good things; a word to call someone who is kept holy*.
The good things God does for us. When we ask God to help us receive good things, we are asking for blessings.
A gift for God (or a false god) that people brought to be burned. When the priest killed an animal for a sacrifice*, he burned it and offered it as a gift to God.
The one God has anointed*. Jesus is the Christ. He is the chosen one from God; the Messiah*.
A person that follows and believes all about Jesus Christ; a thing which is from Christ; a person who follows what Jesus taught and did.
A group of people who follow and believe in Jesus Christ; a meeting or gathering of those who believe*in Christ; all those who believe*in Christ.
To say that you have done wrong things; to say that you believe in God.
When two or more people agree together; when God and people agree to something by making a promise; when God and a person or people agree to a special thing.
When God made the world and everything there is; everything that God has made.
Two pieces of wood fixed together. The Romans punished people by fixing them to a cross to die. Jesus died this way; to carry your cross means not to put yourself first but to put Jesus and other people first in your life.
To use bad words; to wish evil*upon a person; to speak strong words against a person; when a person is sad because of the bad words that someone has said against them.
A person who wants to do the same things as another person and learn from them; one who follows another and learns from him; a person who believes in Jesus and follows the things he teaches.
Things that are of, or from, God.
Another name for Satan*. Satan*is the worst of the evil*spirits. The Devil is the enemy of God and his people.
An older man or woman; the men who led the early church*; a leader of the church*.
One of the letters written by one of the first followers of Jesus; a letter from an apostle*. Many of these letters are a part of the New Testament*part of the Bible.
Things that have always been and will always continue to be; a thing that has no beginning or ending; a thing that never changes.
Things that continue for ever.
Bad; the opposite of good; wicked; doing bad; things that hurt someone.
A bad spirit*who works for Satan*and does bad things.
People who have to leave their own land, often for a long time; the times when the Jews*were taken from the land of Israel*.
To believe in someone or something; to agree with, and do the things God teaches; to do what God says even when it seems difficult; to be really sure about the things of God and Jesus his Son; to be sure that the Bible is true. ‘The faith’ means the things that Christians* say are true about Jesus.
To be full of faith* and not moving from what you think is true; to be true to do the right thing; to follow God’s ways.
To go after someone who leads; the men and women who believe in Jesus and do what he says.
To show mercy*and not to remember bad things against someone; to set someone free from wrong things that they do; to let someone go free from punishment. When God forgives us, he does not hold the wrong things we do against us.
People who are not Jews*; people who do not know God; people of all nations who are not Jews*.
Everything that makes God beautiful and great; like a great king; a bright light from God or Jesus.
To be without God; separated from God; someone who does not know, believe in, or care about God.
The good news for everybody that God saves people from sin*through Jesus Christ; the good news of the things Jesus has done for us by his life, death and raising from the dead; the message from God to us; the four books at the beginning of the New Testament*.
A gift of God that we should not get because of the bad things we have done; what God gives because he is so kind to us; the help and safe keeping from God. We cannot get grace*by working for it.
When we know we have done wrong things and feel bad about them; when we feel shame for wrong things we have done.
The place where God and Christ are; the future home of the people who know God; the place of happiness and peace*where God lives and rules; the place where people who know God and Jesus will go after they die; the sky God made.
The language of the Jews*; another name for a Jew*; a person from Israel*.
A place where people are always separated from God; the place where people not knowing God go after death.
What God is like; different and better than all other things; all good with no bad in it; a thing that God has; separate from sin*; clean.
The Holy Spirit is God, as is God the Father and God the Son. Jesus promised to send the Holy Spirit to all that know him as the Son of God. Nobody sees the Holy Spirit, but he joins with the spirit of those that know Jesus. The Holy Spirit helps a person to follow Jesus and to do good things.
To look for a future thing that God has promised.
An object made of wood, stone or metal for people to worship* instead of the real God; an image of a person or object that people worship* instead of God; a false god; something that we love more than God and put in his place.
Jacob’s new name from God; all the people born of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob and their children; the group of people God chose; that part of the land that God gave to the people of Israel where a king of the north ruled; all the people that are Jews*.
The people of Israel; the people that are Jews*and live in Israel.
A person who is from the family of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob; a person who follows the faith*of the Jews.
A person who says what is right or wrong; a person who decides if someone has done right or wrong; to decide what is right or wrong; to speak against someone who has done wrong.
When God says what is right or wrong; when somebody says who is good or bad; when people are tested by God or Christ.
The quality of being completely fair and being right; the way that God is right in dealing with all that he has made; the correct thing that God does with all that he has made.
To be made right with God through the death and return to life of Jesus Christ; to say someone is made right with God.
Where a king rules; a land where a king rules. The kingdom of God is where God rules.
A small sheep like the animals given as a sacrifice*to God in the temple*.
Lamb of God
Jesus is called the Lamb of God. This shows that Jesus was the sacrifice*that was offered for us. He did this so that God could forgive*the bad things we do.
The name for God in the Bible*; a name we use for Jesus when we obey him; someone with authority. This means that God is ruler over all.
Being kind to bad people; help to those who are in need or difficulty; the love God shows in forgiving; God’s love and goodness; God’s pity towards all he has made.
The special servant of God; the name God chose for Jesus Christ; the person that God sent to save people from God’s anger against their sin* and to be their king; the only one who can put people right with God; the one who will come again to rule over God’s kingdom* for ever; God’s anointed one. Christ is the Greek word for Messiah. God promised the Jews*that the Messiah would save them and be their king. They did not believe Jesus was the Messiah when he came. Jews* are still waiting for a Messiah.
Wonderful works that God does by his power; a wonderful thing that shows that a person’s message is from God.
A thing that is hidden; a thing that we do not know or can not understand; a thing that we can only know if God helps us know it.
The last part of the Bible, which the writers wrote after Jesus rose up from the dead. It is about the things that Jesus did and taught and about the church*.
A gift for God (or false gods) from the priest and people; an animal to be offered as a sacrifice*.
The first part of the Bible; the holy* books that men wrote before Jesus was born.
An important holy* day for the Jews*. They ate a special meal on this day every year. This was to remember that God freed them from being slaves in Egypt at the time of Moses.
A story, like those told by Jesus, to explain the things that he taught; a saying or a story from which you can understand two things or where something is hidden.
When we do not fight God or other people; when we have no troubles in our mind or spirit*; when we are friendly towards other people.
The time each year when the Jews* thank God for their food; the time when God gave the Holy Spirit* to the church*.
A group of Jews* who thought they kept all God’s commands. They did not like the things that Jesus taught. They thought that they did not have any wrong ways, so they became very proud.
To say how good a person is; to tell God how great he is, as when we are praying and singing to him.
To tell the good news about Jesus Christ to someone or a group of people; to explain the truth about God.
A man who gave gifts and burned animals as a sacrifice* to God for the Jews*; a man God chose to serve him; a man who made sacrifices to false gods.
Words and stories that God gave to a person; words that tell of things that will happen in the future; the words that a prophet*speaks or writes.
To tell of things that will happen in the future; to speak with God’s (or a false god’s) help and on God’s (or a false god’s) behalf.
Those who were able to tell other people what God wanted; people who spoke for God a long time ago; someone who told of things that would happen in the future; a person who spoke the words that God gave them to speak.
Songs that tell God how good and great he is, and what he has done for us; songs for when we are praising God; one of the books of the Old Testament*.
When someone pays the price so that a person in a prison can be let out; to get back by giving money; to get back, to bring back from a dangerous place, when you have help out of a problem; what Christ did when he gave his life so that God could forgive* us for the bad things we have done.
To turn from sin* to do what God wants us to do; to decide not to do the bad things you did before; when you turn your mind away from bad things.
To be raised from death, to come alive again after you have died.
Something God makes known to people; the name of the last book of the Bible.
The act of meeting God’s standards of right; when God makes a person right with him; people God sees as clean and not his enemies.
A day of rest in which the people are not allowed to work. In the Old Testament* it was Saturday (from sunset on Friday to sunset on Saturday); day seven of the week for the Jews*. It is a special day for the Jews*, for doing what is pleasing to God.
That which is set apart for God; something God has kept for himself; a thing that God makes holy*.
To kill an animal as an offering to God so that God will forgive* an evil* thing. The Israelites were told to make sacrifices to God. Usually, it was a special animal that the priests killed and burned on the altar*. Some people made sacrifices to false gods. Something a person gives up for a special purpose can also be called a sacrifice; giving up something that is important to you on behalf of someone (God); offering yourself to work for God; Christ’s death for us.
A holy* person; everyone who trusts* Jesus as Lord*; a name for all of the people of God.
When God rescues a person from the result and power of sin*; to save a person from the bad results of the bad things in their lives.
A name for the worst of the bad spirits; the lead enemy of God; the evil* one known also as the Devil; the leader of the evil* spirits; the enemy of God and all God does.
Jesus, the one who saves us; the one who rescues; someone who will bring us to back God from the bad things we have done; someone who saves us from the bad things other people have done to us.
The writings of God’s holy* words; another name for the Bible*; the book which tells God’s truth and shows that the Jesus is Lord*, the saviour* and Messiah*.
A long piece of paper or animal’s skin. It is fixed round two poles of wood. It usually has writing on it.
A person who cares for a group of sheep. The Bible* sometimes says that God is like a shepherd. He cares for his people. Jesus said that he was the good shepherd. He would give his life for his people (sheep).
When people do things against God or other people; when we do not obey the commands of God; when we do not do what God wants us to do; the evil* that is in us which we have from birth.
A person that breaks God’s rules; a person who does things against God.
The part of a person that we cannot see that is in us during our life, and lives after we die. God gave a soul to Adam and Eve when he breathed life into them. The soul of a person is sometimes called the person’s spirit*.
A being that does not have a body and no one can see it. God is spirit. God made other spirit beings (angels*) that we cannot see, who can be good or bad. The spirit of a person is sometimes called the person’s soul..
The house Solomon built to honour God; a special building the Jews* made to honour God. They went there to meet and talk to God. The temple was in the city of Jerusalem. Other nations made temples to honour false gods.
Another word for covenant*; a special agreement or promise. When God and people agree to a special thing, they make a covenant*. An agreement between two or more people.
A special chair where a king sits. It is the place the king rules from.
A group that has a common beginning or purpose. The sons of Jacob each had families. Those families became known as the tribes of Israel. The tribes were named after the sons of Jacob.
The word we use to speak of the one God that is three persons; the word we use to speak of God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit*.
To follow something or someone you think is true; to believe in someone or something; to have faith* and act in faith*; to believe in someone you think speaks the truth.
Someone who has never been with another person to have sex. Jesus’ mother Mary was a virgin when God came to her. She had never been with a man.
A dream that someone can have while they are awake. In the Bible, God uses visions to speak to his people. God gave the prophets* visions to show what he wanted them to say to the people. Not all visions come from God.
A promise. Most often in the Bible*, it is a sacred* promise made to or before God. It is a sin* to make a careless vow or to not keep the vow you have made.
The way we should act when we are with God. We honour him with prayer. We sing and speak praise* to him. We bend down before him to honour him. Worship is a way that we show that God is great and we love him. To show honour to God; to act in ways that please God. Some people do not worship God. They worship false gods.
What a person feels when they are very angry; what a person does when they are very angry. The wrath of God is the right thing he feels when he is angry with sin*; the right thing God does when he is angry with people who sin*.
Another name for the city of Jerusalem; the city of God’s people; the holy mountain in Jerusalem; the city of God in heaven*.