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(Heb. ruah; Gr. pneuma), properly wind or breath. In 2 Thes 2:8 it means "breath," and in Eccl 8:8 the vital principle in man. It also denotes the rational, immortal soul by which man is distinguished (Acts 7:59; 1Cor 5:5; 1Cor 6:20; 1Cor 7:34), and the soul in its separate state (Heb 12:23), and hence also an apparition (Job 4:15; Lk 24:37, Lk 24:39), an angel (Heb 1:14), and a demon (Lk 4:36; Lk 10:20). This word is used also metaphorically as denoting a tendency (Zech 12:10; Lk 13:11).

In Rom 1:4, 1 Tim 3:16, 2Cor 3:17, 1 Pet 3:18, it designates the divine nature.

See also: Holy Spirit

This entry includes text from Easton's Bible Dictionary, 1897.

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