Abarim Publications' online Biblical Greek Dictionary
The important verb χεω (cheo) means to flow: to pour (of liquids), to cast (of liquid clay or liquid metals), or to powderize and diffuse (of solids). Our verb has as much to do with a continuum of whatever can flow, as with the quantification of whatever flows. The wind may flow. Voices may flow. Music may flow. Our verb may describe a massive flowing but more commonly it describes a dripping of drops (of blood, of tears) or a pouring into separate containers (cups, glasses, molds of statues).
Our verb may describe a causing to flow because of melting (of ice or metal), which starts with the formation of individual drops on the item's surface. Or conversely, it may describe a loss of consistency because of the absorption of liquids (for instance the solid ground turning muddy due to rain).
Our verb may also describe a turning "liquid" of a solid without any real liquation: when a mower swings his scythe through the grass, the severed blades "flow" together onto a mound. Likewise, an army may become liquid when its archers "shower" the enemy with arrows. Likewise, trees may "flow" with ripe fruits that drop to the earth and are piled up by harvesters. Likewise, a crowd may flow with people and wrap itself around whatever the attraction is.
The same way, a maiden may flow with passion and wrap herself around her lover, a scientist may flow with curiosity and wrap herself around her experiment, and a celebrant may flow with joy and wrap herself around the object of her joy — and in case you are wondering: ancient languages tend to assign masculinity to things that are one (individuals, solid objects) and femininity to things that are many (crowds, peoples). That means that flowing is mostly done by females, and females mostly flow from or to males.
Our verb χεω (cheo), to flow, is not used independently in the New Testament but shows up in a handsome array of derivations:
- Together with the preposition εκ (ek), meaning out or from: the verb εκχεω (ekcheo) or εκχυνω (ekchuno), meaning to flow out. Wine can begin to flow when individual grapes are broken. Likewise, a person's soul is in his blood but the invention of speech allowed people to liberate their own private souls and let them flow out of them, and coalesce into rivers of ideas that filled the ocean we call modern humanity. This difficult but important verb is used 28 times in the New Testament, see full concordance, and from it in turn derive:
- Together with the noun αιμα (haima), meaning blood: the noun αιματεκχυσια (haimatekchusia), meaning a blood-flowing (Hebrews 9:22 only).
- Together with the preposition υπερ (huper), meaning over or beyond: the verb υπερεκχυνω (huperekchuno), meaning to flow over, to flow over due to the limited capacity of some overwhelmed receptacle (Luke 6:38 only).
- Together with the preposition επι (epi) meaning on or upon: the verb επιχεω (epicheo), meaning to pour upon (Luke 10:34 only).
- Together with the preposition κατα (kata), meaning down: the verb καταχεω (katacheo), to pour down (Matthew 26:7 and Mark 14:3 only).
- Together with the preposition συν (sun), meaning together or with: the verb συγχεω (sugcheo), meaning to jointly flow. This verb takes its meaning from the image of a solid object starting to melt due to heat, and the contexts of our verb demonstrate that the solid object in question was the legal system of a community, or else its collective reality model and library of beliefs. That means that this jointly-flowing is synonymous with being greatly confused due to the instability of the culture from which one derives one's identity. This verb is used 5 times, see full concordance, and from it derives:
- The noun συγχυσις (sugchusis), which describes a broad confusion due to the compromised integrity of a cultural endoskeleton (Acts 19:29 only).
- The noun χολη (chole), which literally means a flow but which specifically came to denote gall (hence too our word "cholera"). This proverbially bitter organic humor in turn became associated with bitterness of mind, which in turn may have had to do with the custom of nursing mothers to wean their infants off their milk and onto solids by applying gall to their nipples. On a national level, milk is what even a land flowing with milk and honey freely provides to their youngest offspring, but withholds when they reach a certain age, to force them into self-sufficiency. A certain plant was called after this word, and this plant was in Hebrew known as רוש (rosh), from a root that means to be disenfranchised, which in Greek is expressed by the adjective πτωχος (ptochos). A drink made from wine and gall is the intellectual equivalent of words of wisdom mixed with words of anger (see next). This noun is used in Matthew 27:34 and Acts 8:23 only, and from it comes:
- The verb χολαω (cholao), meaning to be bilious (John 7:23 only). Wine comes from squashed grapes, which are the intellectual equivalents of people learning to master language (see the verb εκχεω, ekcheo, discussed above). This mastery of language, in turn yields rational clarity, which in turn makes problems transparent and their solutions obvious. Clarity of ratio invents labor-saving machines, which in turn frees people to pursue what they love rather than what they have to do. Bile, on the other hand, is what happens when circumstances put excruciating pressure on a population, so that people are forced to make inventions long before they are intellectually ready, and only to dissolve the bonds that suffocate them. When these bonds are dissolved, these people are still not any clearer and their progress quickly stalls. Continued progress comes only from a love for learning. Progress forged from hate leads only to a hate for learning.
- The noun χοος (cho'os), which describes a pourable or flowable substance, and specifically dust, dirt or excavated soil (Mark 6:11 and Revelation 18:19 only). From this noun comes:
- The adjective χοικος (choikos), meaning made from loose flowing earth or loose flowing dust. This adjective is used 4 times in 3 verses: see full concordance.