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End Notes

This page revised and Copyrighted: Theon Doxazo

14 December, 2023


Kittle on Endurance


Hauck, F.  (1967).  ὑπομένω, ὑπομονή.  In:  Kittel, G. & Friedrich, G. (Eds.).  Theological Dictionary of the New Testament (Vol. IV).  (G. W. Bromiley, Trans.)  Grand Rapids, MI:  Wm. B. Eerdmans.


ὑπομένω, ὑπομονή


"ὑπομένω [verb]:  a. 'to stay behind,'  'to stand still,' . . . 'to stay alive,' . . . b. 'To expect,'  'to await,'  'to wait for,' . . . c. 'To stay,'  'to wait for hostile attacks,'  'to stand firm against them,' . . . d. 'To endure,'  'to bear,'  'to suffer,' . . . e. 'To stay or persevere with something,'"  (Kittle, Volume IV, page 581, line 17)


"ὑπομονή [noun]:  a. 'Holding out,'  'standing fast,'  'endurance,'  'steadfastness,' :  so esp. of enduring evils, . . . . Like ὑπομένειν, it covers courageous active resistance to hostile attack, and in this sense is used alongside ἀνδρεία [bravery] and καρτερία [to endure patiently].  b. 'Expectation,'  'waiting,'"  (Kittle, page 581, line 30)


The Greek World – by Friedrich Hauck


"In the first instance ὑπομένειν [to endure courageously] is ethically neutral.  It simply means 'to hold out.'  But as ὑπομονή [endurance] later came to hold a prominent place in the list of Greek virtues, so there predominates in ὑπομένειν [to endure courageously] the concept of the courageous endurance which manfully defies evil.  Unlike patience, it thus has an active content.  It includes active and energetic resistance to hostile power, though with no assertion of the success of this resistance." . . . . "ὑπομένειν [to endure courageously], which means above all perseverance in face of hostile forces.  This may be against attacks (. . .), fate (. . .), or bodily torments (. . .), or it may be a kind of heroism in face of bodily chastisement (. . .), or the power to resist attempts at bribery, which a whole man repels (. . .)”.  (Kittle, p. 581-582, l. 39/20)


"In the system of Greek virtues ὑπομονή [endurance] is, along with καρτερία [to endure courageously], a sub-division of ἀνδρεία [bravery]." . . . . "But the brave man has to summon from within himself the power of resistance.  As he must not stand firm just for fear of social ostracism (→ αἰσχύνη [shame], Plat. Ap., 28c; Hb. 12:2), so he must not do so from hedonistic motive of enticing hope.  The brave man must stand fast for love of honour (→ αἰδώς [reverence])."  (Kittle, 582, 31&35)


"Aristot. distinguishes ἐγκράτεια [to endure courageously] and καρτερία [restraint] by saying that the ἐγκρατής [the self-controlled one] is ὁ κρατω̑ν τω̑ν ἡδονω̑ν, the καρτερω̑ν ὑπομένων τὰς λύπας [the restraining one controls the sensual pleasure, vs. the persevering one endures the pains]."  (582, 40)


"In the Stoic system, too, ὑπομονή [endurance] has a high place as a sub-division of ἀνδρεία [manliness].  The Stoic strives for strength of soul.  This is to be attained by schooling the will, both ἀποχη̑ τω̑ν ἡδέων [abstinence from sensual pleasure] and ὑπομονή τω̑ν ἐπιπόνων [patience with the complaining].  Under Stoic influence Philo, too, links ὑπομονή [endurance] with ἀνδρεία [manliness] and καρτερία [restraint]."  (583, 3)


The Old Testament and Later Judaism


"Thus ὑπομένειν [endurance]  is mostly used in the OT in the phrase  'to wait upon God.'"  (583, 15)


"thus common translation by ὑπομένειν [to endure courageously] is natural, e.g., Job 6:11; 14:14; 32:16; Lam. 3:21,26 (alongside ἡσυχάσει [quiet]).  In relation to God, the Protector and Refuge of His people, this is confident waiting which will not be shown to be false, Mi. 7:7;(ἐπὶ τῷ θεῷ τῷ σωτῆρί μου [I will wait for the God of my salvation])."  (583, 35)


"חכה q. pi means 'to wait patiently,' Job 32:4, 'to wait', Ψ 105:13, opp. they hastened.  As simple and quiet waiting (2 K. 7:9, 9:3) it has a natural affinity to the Gk. ὑπομένειν [to endure courageously]In relation to God it is confident waiting which is patient until His intervention."  (583, 29)


"The noun πομονή [endurance] is similarly a rendering of מקוה. 'hope,'  'confidence,' I Ch. 29:15; 2 Εσδρ. 10:2, with religious concentration on God as the hope of Israel, Jer. 14:8; 17:3 and of the individual, Ψ 38:7."  (583, 34)


"According to the common OT formula the righteous are those who wait upon God (οί ὑπομένοντες τὸν κύριον [to await the Lord], Ψ 36:9, 34; 24:3).  God is the Deliverer upon whom the hope of the righteous is directed, Ψ 24:5.  Surrounded by unrighteousness and in much inward distress, the righteous know that they are protected by God and that they have only to wait for His liberating action which will bring an alleviation to their situation, Mi. 7:7 (τῷ σωτῆρί μου ['God' of my salvation]).  God is the Almighty, who is above the whole world of man, Is. 51:5.  Above all, He is the covenant God, who will substantiate His promise of help and justice, Ψ 51:9; 129:4 f.  Waiting for God is thus inwardly inspired by the thought of the covenant (Zeph. 3:8), and is a special expression of the piety of Israel.  The subject of waiting is primarily Israel, and God is called the hope of Israel (Jer. 14:8; 17:13).  Only secondarily does the individual wait for the personal help of God (Ψ 9:18;38:7; 61:5; 70:5; Lam. 3:25).  It is an expression of wicked ungodliness to abandon hope in God (Sir. 2:14).  The general concept of pious waiting on God takes on particular force in eschatological thinking.  God will fulfil (sic) the promise of eschatological salvation.  Israel and the righteous wait expectantly for this decisive action of God (Ham 2:3; Is. 25:9 vl.; 49:23 vl.; 51:5).  Those who endure and reach the final fulfilment will be saved (Da. 12:12 Θ; Zech. 6:14).  (584, 1)


"This OT use of πομονή [endurance] carries with it a shift of content as compared with the current use in secular Greek,  attention is not directed earthwards to hostile power which one resists, not does the one who endures draw the power of resistance from within himself.  The point of nerving oneself is to hold fast to God and not to mistake His power and faithfulness.  The divinely oriented πομονή [endurance] is also an active attitude full of the strongest inner tension.  It is mainly perseverance (so Ψ 26:14 along with ἀνδρίζεσθαι [manliness]).  This pious waiting on God prevents us from falling into αἰσχύνη [shame] (Is. 49:23).  But the righteous man does not endure in the power of his own steadfastness (Job 6:11).  His strength to do so has its source in cleaving to God.  It is the result of his waiting on God (Is. 40:31).  Thus OT religion does not incite the righteous directly to manly and courageous steadfastness.  With confidence in the God who protects and finally establishes the right, it grants indirectly a strong inner ability to persevere which can then take on strongly the quietistic character of a patience which waits and endures.  While the Greek moralist censured the linking of πομονή [endurance] with hope as an inadmissible weakening, OT πομονή [endurance] issues almost wholly in hope.  What sustains the righteous is that God will establish justice and reward righteousness (Ψ 141:8; Sir. 36:15)."  (584, 19)


"Job is an example of pious endurance. The frequent occurrence of πομονή [endurance] in the book is no accident (verb, 13 times, noun once)." . . . . "Man's own power is not strong enough for perseverance, 6:11.  It is not possible for man, especially for the ungodly, to stand against God (9:4; 15:31; 2221).  God Himself shatters purely human hope and expectation, 14:19.  Job waits his whole life for God to intervene, 14:14; 17:13;.  God Himself finally reminds Job that none can stand against Him, 41:3."  (584-585, 47&50)


"Martyrs of faith prove hereby their fear of God"  (585, 21)


The New Testament


"πομονή [endurance] as the basic attitude of the righteous, as developed in the OT and later Judaism, finds a natural continuation in the eschatologically oriented thinking of the NT.  The endurance which is given with hope for the realisation (sic) of the kingdom of God is a basic attitude of the Christian too as he faces the attacks of a hostile and unbelieving world and as he finds himself in the midst of its temptations.  It is a decisive precondition if the individual is to attain personally to the final salvation of God."  (585, 29)


"In the NT πομονή [endurance] is preponderantly used either in the absolute for 'to endure,' or in the same sense with the accusative, more rarely the part. or inf."  (585-586, 40)


"There is an example of the Godward use, corresponding to that of the LXX, in 2 Th 3:5.  The ὑπομονὴ τοῦ Χριστοῦ [the steadfastness of Christ] is here expectation of the Christ who will come again in glory.  The Christian must direct is whole heart to this and to ἀγάπη τοῦ Θεοῦ [the love of God] (v.5).  Similarly, in Rev. 1:9 the ὑπομονὴ Ἰησοῦ [endurance in Jesus] is to be construed as expectation of Jesus, since that saying of the exalted Christ in 3:10 (ἐτήρησας τὸν λόγον τῆς ὑπομονῆς μου [Because you have kept My word of perseverance]) is plainly intended to praise the loyal preservation of faith in the parousia [coming] in the community.  Pious waiting for Jesus is the heart-beat of the faith of the NT community."  (586, 7)


"In most of the NT passages ὑπομένειν [to endure courageously] refers to the steadfast endurance of the Christian under the difficulties and tests of the present evil    age."  (586, 20)


"a.  In the Synoptic Gospels ὑπομένειν [to endure courageously] and πομονή [endurance] are found in religious and ethical statements only three times, always on the lips of Jesus.  Lk at 8:15 adds ἐν ὑπομονή [in endurance] to καρποφοροῦσιν [to bear fruit] in the interpretation of the Parable of the Sower.  In contrast to vv. 12, 13, 14 the righteous are characterised (sic) by the steadfastness and persistence with which they cling to piety of life and work in spite of all opposition and temptation.  πομονή [endurance] is here an active force, demonstrated and proved with a view to the final reward.  In Mk. 13:13 (par. Mt. 24:13; 10:22) endurance or perseverance to the end under all the trials (martyrdom etc.) of the terrible last period is a presupposition for attaining salvation.  Lk. has an active formulation of the same thought in 21:19 (ἐν τῇ ὑπομονῇ ὑμῶν κτήσεσθε τὰς ψυχὰς ὑμῶν [By your endurance you will gain your lives])."  (586, 23)


"As concerns the steadfast and patient endurance of the Christian it is noteworthy that this does not derive from personal bravery (→ 581 f.) or stoical insensitivity (1 Pt. 2:20 : κολαφιζόμενοι ὑπομενεῖτε [being struck you shall endure?]).  As in the OT and later Judaism, it draws its power from religious faith, and here especially from Christian hope (R. 8:25 : δι' ὑπομονῆς ἀπεκδεχόμεθα [in patience we await]).  The most Greek is 2 Pt. 1:6, where πομονή [endurance] develops out of self-control, though here too, the righteous man demonstrates his εὐσέβεια [godliness] thereby, as in the thinking of the OT or later Judaism (→ 585).  Unbreakable and patient endurance in face of the evil and injustice of the world is the true attitude of the Christian (1 C. 13:7), his inner action in the present evil aeon (R. 12:12: τῇ θλίψει ὑπομένοντες [being patient in tribulation], 15:4).  πομονή [endurance] is sometimes more active in persevering good works (R. 2:7, καθ' ὑπομονὴν ἔργου ἀγαθοῦ [with endurance in doing good]; 2 C. 12:12), sometimes more passive in the steadfast and patient endurance of suffering." . . . . "In the NT, too, the endurance of sufferings is wholly active (2 C. 1:6 :  τῆς ὑμῶν παρακλήσεως τῆς ἐνεργουμένης ἐν ὑπομονῇ τῶν αὐτῶν παθημάτων [your comfort, which is effective in the patient enduring of the same sufferings]).  This is particularly evident in 1 Pt. 2:20, where it is mentioned along with the inevitable overwhelming (v. 19 : πάσχων ἀδίκως [suffering unjustly]) by injustices.  As Christians have a call to suffer (Ac. 14:22; 1 Pt, 2:21), so they are summoned to πομονή [endurance], in which they must prove their standing in the faith by perseverance to the final redemption (1 C. 6:4).  Paul realises that he is under obligation to endure as an example (2 Tm. 2:10).  It is of the very essence of NT piety that πομονή [endurance] is not so much endurance under self-selected burdens (as in the Greek world) but rather endurance under imposed sufferings and religious temptation.  Tribulation, piously endured, accomplishes as its result (R. 5:3 : κατεργάζεται [produces]) in the Christian highly estimable πομονή [endurance], and this the even higher δοκιμὴ [character] (5:4).  The battle which has to be fought through in the Christian sphere (Hb. 10:32 : ἄθλησιν παθημάτων [conflict of sufferings]) is thus more inward as compared with that in the Greek sphere.  The reference of πομονή [endurance] is to endurance in face of unfavourable relationships" . . . . "The endurance of the Christian will not be complaining, weary, despondent or grumbling.  It is inspired and filled by a pious and heroic will to hold firm (Jm. 1:2 f.).  In persevering, the Christian is not referred to his own power.  The needed power of resistance is given him by God Himself (Col. 1:11: δυναμούμενοι . . . εἰς πᾶσαν ὑπομονὴν [being strengthened . . . unto all endurance]), who for this reason is called ὁ θεὸς τῆς ὑπομονῆς [the God of endurance] (R. 15:5), i.e., the God who imparts πομονή [endurance].   Christ and His example also enable Christians to hold fast under sufferings (1 Pt. 2:21 in continuation of v. 20)."  (586-587, 37/7&27)


"The model Christian is described in Tt. 2:2 in terms of the triad faith, love and (hoping, steadfast, patient) endurance (cf. 1 C. 13:7), just as the triad πίστις [faith], ἐλπίς [hope], ἀγάπη [love] gives us the main Christian virtues in 1 C. 13:13.  While ἐλπίς [hope] directs one's gaze more to the future, ὑπομονή [endurance] summons to perseverance under the attacks of the world;  it is thus indispensable for the attaining of salvation.      ὑπομονή [endurance] here is very close to ἐλπίς [hope].  The phrase πομονή τῆς ἐλπίδος [perseverance of hope] in 1 Th. 1:3 expresses the way in which Christian hope seeks to be steadfast under uncertainty and threat."  (587, 36)


"c.  Hb., which is written to a church under persecution, impressively exhorts to       ὑπομονή [endurance].  The readers, who have already resisted steadfastly the hostile attacks of serious persecution (10:32 : ἄθλησιν ὑπεμείνατε παθημάτων [you endured a conflict of sufferings]), must now display the same steadfastness (v. 36) if they are to attain the promise.  In the metaphor of the race (12:1) ὑπομονή [endurance] reminds us of the tense perseverance to victory which is necessary if the prize is to be won.  The gaze of the Christian who is thus summoned to endurance should be fixed on Christ Himself, the model martyr,"  (588, 6)


"e.  Rev. especially, the book of the martyr church, in sevenfold repetition extols      πομονή [endurance] as the right and necessary attitude of believers in the last hour of the old aeon.  The two-sidedness of ὑπομονή [endurance], its orientation to God and to the world, is particularly clear in Rev.  'ὑπομονή [endurance] is an endurance which is grounded in waiting, a waiting which expresses itself in endurance.'  Waiting for Jesus (1:9; 3:10) is on the one side the attitude which fills the whole soul of believers.  On the other side salvation depends on their steadfastness to the end.  It is particularly necessary as the suffering and enduring patience of martyr believers under persecution (2:2 f.; 19)."  (588, 29)



[The bracketed translations are mine.]