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Although primarily referring to inhabitants of Greece, there was a wider usage; persons who had a knowledge of Greek culture or who lived in sophisticated cities of the Roman Empire were naturally ‘Greeks’, whereas the local rustics were ‘barbarians’ (Acts 28: 2, AV, translating the Greek literally). ‘Greeks’ is also used of Gentiles in general (2 Macc. 4: 36), so that ‘Jews and Greeks’ means in effect the whole human race (Rom. 2: 9–10). A deputation of Greeks arrived unexpectedly to see Jesus (John 12: 21); but they were already sympathetic to Jewish monotheism (John 12: 20).

Subjects: Biblical Studies.

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