Bible Dictionary
P
(* = the name meaning)

pagan
(pay-guhn)

An unbeliever; a person who does not love or obey God.
Matthew 18:17
Luke 12:29-31
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Palestine
(pal-uh-styne)
The land of the Philistines; Philistia and the land to the east of it. When the Canaanites lived in this land, it was known as Ganaan. When the people of Israel lived there, it was known as the land of Israel. It includes the smaller areas known as Edom, Moab, Judea, Gilead, Bashan, Ammon, Negev, and Galilee, among others. It also includes Lake Huleh, the Sea of Galilee, the Jordan River, and the Dead Sea.
Genesis 17:8
2 Chronicles 9:26
Joel 13:4
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papyrus
(puh-pye-ruhss)
A plant native to the Nile delta of Egypt and Lake Huleb that grows in marshes and muddy soil; Cyperus papyrus. People of Old Testament times used papyrus to make paper; rope, sandals, mats, baskets, and even boats. Moses' mother hid her baby in a basket made of papyrus.
Exodus 2:3
Job 8:11
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parable             (* placing beside or together)
(pair-uh-buhl)       "Earthly story with a heavenly meaning"
A story with a special meaning. Jesus told many parables to teach his disciples.
Psalm 78:2-3
Ezekiel 20:49
Matthew 13:10-12
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paradise
(pair-uh-dise)
 Another word for Heaven.
Luke 23:32-43
2 Corinthians 12:2-4
Revelation 2:7
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Pashhur
(pash-ur)
Chief priest during the reign of Zedekiah who had Jeremiah beaten and put in stocks; son of Immer.
Jeremiah 20:1-3
One of the four royal officials who put Jeremiah in a cistern; son of Malkijah; grandson of King Zedekiah.
Jeremiah 21:1
Father of Gedaliah.
Jeremiah 38:1-2
One of those who agreed to Nehemiah's reforms.
Nehemiah 10:73
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Passover
(pass-oh-vur)
Part of the Feast of Unleavened Bread and one of the most important annual Jewish festivals. Passover celebrates the night God freed his people from Egypt. On that night, the death angel swept through the land but passed over each house of the Israelites. The Last Supper that Jesus ate with his disciples was a Passover meal.
Exodus 12:11
John 18:28
1 Corinthians 5:7
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Passover Lamb
(pass-oh-vur lam)
The lamb eaten at the Passover meal. A lamb is eaten because the Israelite slaves sprinkled the blood of a lamb on their door posts and lintels on the night of the tenth plague on Egypt
Exodus 12:21
2 Chronicles 35:1
1 Corinthians 5:7
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pastor
(pas-tur)
A church leader.  "Shepherd" is a word used for a church leader
John 10:11-18
Hebrews 13:20
1 Peter 2:25
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pastoral epistles
(pas-tur-uhl eh-pis-uhlz)
A term often used to describe the New Testament books of I Timothy, 2 Timothy, and Titus. A pastor is a church leader and an epistle is a letter; thus, "pastoral epistle" means "letter to a church leader." Each letter gives advice and instructions especially for leaders of a church. The apostle Paul wrote all three.
1 Timothy 1:2-7
2 Timothy 2:1-2
Titus 1:4-9
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patriarch           (* a father of a tribe)
(pay-tree-ark)
A forefather or ancestor. Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob were patriarchs of Israel.
Acts 7:8
Hebrews 7:4
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Paul
(pawl)
"Saul of Tarsus," the apostle, evangelist, and author of 13 New Testament books. Saul was his Hebrew name; his Greek name was Paul. Paul influenced the spread of Christianity more than any other person. He led three missionary journeys to many Roman provinces and cities before he was arrested and forced to go to Rome to stand trial. The famous story of his conversion is told in Acts 9. Acts 13:1-21:16 records his missionary journeys. Acts 22:17-28:31 records his journey to Rome.
Acts 13:9
Acts 13:45-46
Colossians 1:23
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Peace Offering
(peess awf-ur-ing)
Another term for Fellowship Offering.
Leviticus 3:1
Numbers 7:8
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Peleg
(pel-eg)
Son of Eber, great-grandson of Noah. He was named Peleg, which means "division," because he was born during the time of Babel, when the people of the world first
became divided.
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Peniel              (* Face of God)
(puh-nye-uhl)
The name Jacob gave to the place where he wrestled with God.
Genesis 32:30
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Peninnah         (* Coral or Pearl)
(puh-nin-uh)
Wife of Elkanah who teased Hannah for having no children. Peninnah had several sons and daughters.
1 Samuel 1:1-4
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Pentateuch
(pen-tuh-took)
The first five books of the Bible: Genesis, 1 Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy; also called the Law, the Books of Law, the Law of Moses, the Book of the Law, and the Book of the Law of God.
Deuteronomy 29:21
1 Corinthians 9:9
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Pentecost
(pent-uh-kost)
New Testament name for the Feast of Weeks, the fiftieth day after Passover. "Pentecost" means 'fiftieth." The famous coming of the Holy Spirit at Jerusalem took place during a celebration of Pentecost.
Acts 2:1
Acts 20:16
1 Corinthians 16:8
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Perez        (* breach)
(pair-ez)
Son of Judah and Tamar; twin brother of Zerah; father of Hezron and Hamul; forefather of the Perizzites.
Genesis 38:26-3O
Ruth 4:12
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Perga
(pur-guh)
A port city in the Roman province of Pamphylia visited by the apostle Paul during his first missionary journey. Perga, like Ephesus, had a temple of Artemis. The port city of Attallia was nearby to the west.
Acts 13:13-14
Acts 14:24-25
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Pergamum                 (* citadel, berg)
(pur-guh-muhm)
A city in the Roman province of Asia and headquarters of Roman emperor worship. Jesus called Pergamum "the city where that great throne of Satan is located" (Revelation 2:13).
The city was about 24 kilometers inland from the coast of the Aegean Sea, and 110 kilometers north of Smyrna.
Revelation 1:10-11
Revelation 2:12-17
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persecution
(pur-si-kyoo-shuhn)
The abuse of others because of their beliefs or devotion to God.
Mark 4:16-17
Acts 8:1
1 Thessalonians 3:7
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Persia
(pur-zhuh)
The land directly east of Babylonia and Elam, and the people that lived there; modem Iran. The Persians ruled the kingdom of Babylonia after the Babylonians during the Exile. Cyrus, Danus, and Artaxerxes were Persian kings.
2 Chronicles 36:20-23
Daniel 10:1
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Peter              (* Rock or stone)
(pee-tur)
Simon Peter.
Matthew 10:2
Mark 14:70-72
Acts 1:15-16
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Peter, First
(pee-tur, furst)
Twenty-first book of the New Testament, a letter written by the apostle Peter to the Christians who were driven out of Jerusalem and scattered throughout Asia Minor. Believers of Peter's day had been persecuted for their faith and therefore had traveled from their homes to all parts of the Roman Empire, especially Asia Minor. Many churches had started there. Peter wrote this letter to them. Most of the letter encourages Christians to stay true to Christ as they suffer for their faith.
1 Peter 1:1-2
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Peter, Second
(pee-tur, sek-uhnd)
Twenty-second book of the New Testament, a letter written by the apostle Peter to all Christians everywhere. Peter wrote this letter to teach about Christian growth, and to warn about false teachers.
2Peter 1:1-2
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Pharaoh               (* the great house)
(fair-oh)
The king or ruler of Egypt. "Pharaoh" was a title, like "President"
Genesis 40:4-5
Exodus 1:15-18
Acts 7:17-18
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Pharisees
(fair-uh-seez)
A group of leaders among the Jews in New Testament times famous for their opposition to Jesus. Pharisees stressed strict obedience to the law and had a lot of extra rules, called "oral laws," to explain how. They argued with Jesus for doing what they thought illegal. Jesus said that they applied the law too strictly and had lost sight of the law's intent. Pharisees were among those on the Sanhedrin who had Jesus arrested and tried for blasphemy. But not all Pharisees opposed him: Joseph of Arimathea and Nicodemus were secret disciples.
Matthew 5:2O
Mark 8:11
Acts 23:6-8
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Philadelphia                  (* brotherly love)
(fil-uh-del-fee-uh)
A city in the heart of the Roman province of Asia, sixth of the seven mentioned in the letters of Revelation. The churches at Philadelphia and Smyrna were the only two that Jesus did not rebuke in these letters. Jesus commended the Christians at Philadelphia for being faithful to Him. The city was located 32 kilometers east of Sardis.
Revelation 1:10-11
Revelation 3:7
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Philemon
(fye-lee-muhn)
Christian man named in the book of Philemon: Christian co-worker of Paul's. He had a church in his home. He owned a slave named Onesimus. Philemon was probably from Colosse.
Philemon 1:1, 8-11
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Philemon, book of
(fye-lee-muhn, buk uhv)
Eighteenth book of the New Testament, a letter written by Paul to Philemon. Paul wrote this letter because Philemon's runaway slave, Onesimus had become a Christian and was about to return. Paul wanted Philemon to forgive Onesimus and receive him as a brother.
Philemon 1:1, 8-11
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Phillip            (* lover of horses)
(fil-ip)
A common name in New Testament times:
Tetrarch of Iturea and Thaconitis when John the Baptist started preaching.
Luke 3:1-3
Herod Antipas.
One of Jesus first disciples and the man who introduced Nathanael to him. Philip is always listed fifth among the Twelve.
John 1:44-46
One of seven evangelists sent by the church in Jerusalem to preach in the surrounding areas. This is the Philip who explained Isaiah 53 to the Ethiopian eunuch.
Acts 8:38-4O; 21:7-8
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Philippi
(fil-i-pye)
City in the Roman province of Macedonia 15 kilometers northwest of Neapolis. Paul visited Philippi during his second and third missionary journeys and started the church there.
Matthew 16:13
Acts 16:12
l Thessalonians 2:2
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Philippians
(fil-ip-ee-uhnz)
People who lived in Philippi in New Testament times.
Christians of the church in Philippi. Paul wrote the book of Philippians to these people.
Philippians 4:15
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Philippians, book of
(fil-ip-ee-uhnz, buk uhv)
Eleventh book of the New Testament, a letter by Paul to the Christians at Philippi. Paul wrote this letter while in prison in Rome, and it is one of the most personal letters in the New Testament. It has a lot of kind words for the Philippian Christians and the way they treated Paul while he was there. More than anything else, Paul urged his readers to be joyful.
Philippians 1:3-11
Philippians 4:15
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Philistines
(fil-i-steenz)
Descendants of the Casluhites, the people of Philistia and constant enemies of Israel. Goliath one of the most famous Philistines of all. Many of the judges fought against the Philistines.
Genesis 21:32
Judges 13:5
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Phoenicia                    (* palm tree)
(fuh-nee-shuh)
Another name for the land of Lebanon, especially the coastal part between Cannel and the Orontes River. Tyre and Sidon were in Phoenicia.
Isaiah 23:11
Acts 7:26
Acts 11:19; 15:3;21:2
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phylacteries
(fil-ak-tur-eez)
Small boxes containing verses of Scripture. Devout Jews and Pharisees would strap these to their foreheads in observance of Deuteronomy
Matthew 23:5
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Pi-hahiroth      (* the place where sedge grows)
(pye hah-hye-roth)
The place in the east of Egypt where the Egyptian chariots caught up with the fleeing Israelites, and where the Israelites entered the Red Sea after it had parted.
Exodus 14:2
Exodus 14:9
Numbers 33:7-8
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pigeon
(pij-uhn)
A medium-sized, plump bird closely related to the dove and one of the kinds of animals the Israelites were allowed to sacrifice for sin. Pigeons were darker in color than doves. Doves and pigeons were chosen by those who could not afford bulls, sheep, or goats.
Genesis 15:9
Leviticus 1:14
Leviticus 12:6
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Pithom
(pith-uhm)
One of two cities built by the Hebrew slaves in Egypt before the Exodus. The other was Rameses.
Exodus 1:11
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Place of the Skull
(playss uhv the skuhl)
See Golgotha
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plague
(playg)
Disease or anything that causes harm to many people.
Exodus 9:15
Psalm 78:50
Revelation 6:8
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plagues of Egypt
(playgz uhv ee-jipt)
Ten disasters that God brought on Egypt during the time of the Israelites' slavery in Egypt. God had sent Moses to lead the people of Israel across the wilderness to Canaan, but Pharaoh said no. Each time Pharaoh said no, God sent a plague.
The ten plagues were:
water to blood,
swarm of frogs,
swarm of gnats,
swarm of flies,
death of livestock,
sores on all Egyptians,
hailstorm,
swarm of locusts,
darkness,
death of Egyptian firstborn.
The story is told in Exodus 1:1-12:30.
Exodus 5:3-4
Amos 4:10
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Pontius Pilate
(pon-shus pye-luht)
Roman procurator (governor) of Judea during the time of Jesus' arrest, trial, and crucifixion. Pilate is the one who sentenced Jesus to death.
Luke 3:1
Acts 4:27
1 Timothy 6:13
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Potiphar         (* belonging to the sun)
(pot-uh-fur)
Officer in Pharaoh's service who bought Joseph as a slave. Potiphar's wife got Joseph thrown into prison.
Genesis 37:36
Genesis 39:1-5
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Praetorium
(pray-tohr-ee-uhm)
The home of a Roman governor.
Matthew 27:27
Mark 15:16
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praise
(prayz)
 Applause; approval; any word or gesture that declares the worth of something or someone. Praise is a key part of worshiping
Praise is not the same as flattery. Praise is how a person truly feels, flattery is not.
Psalm 111:10
Hebrews 13:15
1Peter 1:7
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prayer
(pray-ur)
Talking to God, a very important Christian duty. Prayer plays a key part in the lives of God's people. Moses, David, Daniel, Nehemiah, Paul, and many others relied on prayer. The book of Psalms is a collection of prayers set to music. Jesus taught his
disciples to pray. Prayer can include praise, confession, thanks, and requests. Romans 12:12 says, "Always be prayerful."
Genesis 25:21
Psalm 61:1
Philippians 1:9
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preach, preaching
(preech, preech-ing)
To give religious instruction.
Ezra 6:14
Luke 3:1-3
Galatians 1:8-9
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precept
(pree-sept)
A command, law, or ordinance.
Exodus 12:14
Psalm 119:104
Hebrews 9:19
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predestinate
(pree-dess-ti-nate)
See predestined
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predestined
(pree-dess-tind)
Planned beforehand by God.
Romans 8:29-30
Ephesians 1:11
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prefect
(pree-fekt)
Governor of a city or province that had been taken over by the Persians. Daniel was in charge of all the prefects of Babylonia during the Exile.
Daniel 3:2-3
Daniel 3:27
Daniel 6:7
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Preparation Day
(prep-ur-ay-shuhn day)
The day before Passover. It was called Preparation Day because the Jews had to make so many preparations for this important festival. Jesus died and was buried on Preparation Day.
Matthew 27:62-64
Mark 15:42-44
Luke 23:54-56
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pride
(pride)
Belief that you are better than you really are. Arrogance, conceit
Pride is one of the most dangerous sins because it makes people think they do not need God.
Leviticus 26:19
Proverbs 29:23
James 1:9-10
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priest, priesthood         (* presbyter or elder)
(preest, preest-hud)
Person who serves as a mediator between God and others. In Israel, priests administered the offerings and supervised the festivals. Every priest had to be a descendant of Aaron, and every priest had to consecrate himself before serving. The priests worked together with the Levites. God first gave the priests their duties while the Israelites were camped in the desert during the Exodus. The book of Leviticus explains all the details.
Exodus 3:1
Joshua 22:13
John 18:15-16
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principalities and powers
(prin-si-pal-i-teez and pou-urz)
Supernatural forces. "Principalities" and "powers" can refer to either angels or demons.
Ephesians 6:12
Colossians 1:16
Colossians 2:15
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Priscilla                (* ancient)
(pri-sil-uh)
See Aquila and Priscilla
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proconsul
(proh-kon-suhl)
The position and title given to governors of peaceful Roman provinces in New Testament times. Proconsuls answered to the Roman senate. Sergius Paulus and Gallio were proconsuls. A proconsul was not the same as a procurator.
Acts 13:6-12
Acts 18:12
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procurator        (* governor)
(prok-yuh-ray-tur)
The position and title given to governors of unruly Roman provinces in New Testament
times. Procurators answered to the emperor.  Pontius Pilate, Felix, and Festus were procurator.  A procurator was not the same as a proconsul.
Matthew 27:2,15-26
Acts 23:23-35
Acts 24:27
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prodigal
(prah-dig-uhl)
Reckless, wasteful
Luke 19:22
Matthew 13:49
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profane
(proh-fane)
Adjective: Unholy; wicked.
Ezekiel 21:25
Verb: To make unholy; to desecrate.
Leviticus 19:12
Ezekiel 22:26
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promised land
(pro-mist land)
 The land that God promised to Abraham and his descendants; the land of Canaan; Palestine.
Hebrews 11:9
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prophecy
(prof-uh-see)
Noun: A message from God. Sometimes the message predicted the future, and sometimes merely told God's appraisal of what was happening. A person chosen by God to deliver a prophecy was called a prophet.
The verb form is prophesy.
2 Kings 9:25
Matthew 13:14
1 Corinthians 13:2
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prophesy
(prof-uh-sye)
Verb: To tell a message from God.  The noun form is prophecy.
Ezekiel 37:9
Matthew 7:22
1Corinthians 14:39
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prophet
(prof-uht)
A person who speaks for God; a person who receives and delivers messages from God. Some prophets wrote down their prophecies, but others did not.  Some of the most famous prophets were Moses, Elijah, Elisha, Isaiah, Jeremiah, Ezekiel, Daniel, and John the Baptist
Exodus 7:1
Matthew 27:9
1 Corinthians 14:37
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prophetess
(prof-uh-tess)
A female prophet. The Bible mentions five prophetesses: Miriam, Deborah, Huldah, Noadiah, and Anna. Noadiah was a false prophetess.
Exodus 15:20
Judges 4:4
Luke 2:36
A prophet's wife. Isaiah called his wife a prophetess.
Isaiah 8:3
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prophets to Israel
(prof-uhtz too iz-ree-uhl)
The prophets who brought God's messages to the northern kingdom of Israel: Ahljah, Elijah, Elisha, Jonah, Amos, and Hosea.
1 Kings 20:13
Luke 4:27
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prophets to Judah
(prof-uht too joo-duh)
The prophets who brought God's messages to the southern kingdom of Judah:
Before the Exile: Obadiah, Elisha, Joel, Micah, Isaiah, Nahum, Zephaniah, Huldah, Jeremiah, and Habakkuk.
1 Kings 13:20-21
2 Chronicles 36:12
During the Exile: Ezekiel and Daniel.
After the Exile: Haggai, Zechariah, and Malachi.
Matthew 24:15
Ezra 6:14
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proselyte       (*  a visitor or new comer)
(pros-uh-lite)
An older word for convert (noun).
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prostitute
(pros-ti-toot)
A person who has relations for money.
Acts 2:7-11
Acts 13:43
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Proverbs, book of
(prah-vurbz, buk uhv)
Twentieth book of the Old Testament and of the books of poetry. The word "proverb" means "rule"; the book of Proverbs is a collection of rules or principles for living. Solomon wrote most of them. Proverbs 1:5 says, "Let those who are wise listen to these proverbs become even wiser."
Proverbs 1:1
Proverbs 10:1
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Psalms, book of
(sahlmz, buk uhv)
Nineteenth book of the Old Testament and second of the books of poetry. The word "psalm" means "sacred song"; the book of Psalms is a collection of songs written by David, Asaph, Levites of the clan of Korah, Solomon, Moses, and others. Psalm 23 is one of the most famous passages in the Bible.
Psalm 3:1
Psalm 47:1, 7
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publican
(pub-li-kuhn)
An older word for tax collector that is found in some translations of the Bible.
Matthew 10:3
Luke 18:10
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purification
(pyur-i-fuh-kay-shuhn)
Cleansing; making clean.
Numbers 19:17
Luke 2:22
Acts 21:26
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purify
(pyur-i-fye)
To make clean
Leviticus 14:49
James 4:8
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Purim        (* lots)
(poo-rim)
A Jewish holiday that commemorates God's rescue of the Jews from Haman's plot to destroy them. The name means "lots," and comes from the fact that Haman cast lots to determine the day of the Jews' extermination. Purim is celebrated on the thirteenth, fourteenth, and fifteenth of day Adar.
Esther 9:26-32
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