Romans 12:15



As with #15 in this study, the two words used here are really just two forms (infinitive and participle) of the Greek word klaio which means "to weep, lament, shed tears, bewail, to weep audibly." This word appears 40 times in the NT and is "used of any loud expression of grief" (Vine's Expos. Dict.). Examples of this usage are: Lev. 10:6; Matt. 26:75; Mark 5:38-39; John 11:31, 33.

There are actually about six different Greek words which portray various levels of crying (see: Thayer, p. 347). A more controlled, less demonstrative, shedding of tears is dakruo which means "to weep silently." This word is used 12 times in the NT (John 11:35 is an example ..... note the contrast with the previous word in vs. 31 & 33).


"The bond of tears is the strongest bond of all" (Barclay, p. 182).

"All who are afflicted know how much it diminishes their sorrow to see others sympathizing with them, and especially those who evince in their sympathies the Christian spirit. How sad would be a suffering world if there were none who regarded our griefs with interest or with tears; if every sufferer were left to bear his sorrows unpitied and alone; and if all the ties of human sympathy were rudely cut at once, and men were left to suffer in solitude and unbefriended!" (Barnes, p. 286).

Notice that in the original Greek "the two verbs and the two participles rhyme" in #15 and #16 (Lenski, p. 774).

"It is a fact, attested by universal experience, that by sympathy a man may receive into his own affectionate feeling a measure of the distress of his friend, and that his friend does find himself relieved in the same proportion as the other has entered into his griefs" (Clarke, p. 141).

"This is what Paul meant by becoming all things to all men. He would place himself in such full and complete sympathy with them that he felt their difficulties and rejoiced when they had occasions for joy. He could feel a brother's sigh and with him bear a part" (Lipscomb, p. 229).

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