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2001 Translation


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    Naos: The temple sanctuary

    There are several places throughout the Bible where the Greek word naos is used, which is commonly translated as temple in other Bibles. However, this isn’t exactly right.

    There are two Greek words commonly translated as ‘temple’ in the Bible:

    1. hieron
    2. naos

    The word hieron refers to the entire temple complex, including its various rooms and courtyards. The naos, on the other hand, just refers to the innermost part of a temple where the Greeks believed that their gods dwelled.

    So naos in the Bible seems to be a Hellenized (Greek) description of the central part of the temple which contains the Holy and Most Holy compartments. In English it is commonly called the temple sanctuary.

    We especially find this word (naos) used in the book of Revelation, where the word for temple isn’t found at all. Although at Revelation 11:1-2 it could imply the entire temple.