Abarim Publications' online Biblical Greek Dictionary
The noun λατρις (latris) means hireling. It stems from the noun λατρον (latron), hire or pay, which in turn is part of an ancient Proto-Indo-European root "leht-", to grant or possess, which has very few surviving traces beyond the Latin latro, mercenary or highway robber.
Being a λατρις (latris), hireling, was obviously one step up from being a δουλος (doulos), or slave, and one step down from being an ελευθερος (eleutheros), or freeman. Our verb relates to the noun μισθος (misthos), meaning wage, and ultimately the Hebrew verb שכר (sakar), to hire, hence the name Issachar, or hireling.
The noun λατρις (latris) is not used independently in the New Testament, but from it come:
- The verb λατρευω (latreuo), meaning to serve, but with an emphasis on hire (rather than serving out of passion). It is not related to the familiar noun latrine (which is a contraction of lavatrina, from lavare, to wash). It's used 21 times in the New Testament, see full concordance, and from it in turn come:
- The noun λατρεια (latreia), meaning (paid) service or service for a wage. Technically, this noun describes servitude or the state of a hired laborer, but in the New Testament, this noun describes solely man's service to God (implying that all the blessings of life and intellect are in fact the wage for which service is due). It's used 5 times, see full concordance, and from it in turn comes:
- Again together with the noun ειδωλον (eidolon), meaning "object of visualization" or idol: the noun ειδωλολατρης (eidololatres), meaning idolater; someone who goes for the quick fix rather than a real relationship with the living Creator: a religious junkie. This word occurs 7 times, see full concordance.