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PILGRIM (Gr. parepidēmos, a sojourner in a strange place). Heb.11.13-Heb.11.16 (kjv) shows that the faithful sought a heavenly city and did not consider themselves permanently attached to earth. 1Pet.2.11 exhorts Christians to purity because of this status. Pilgrims might be exiles (rsv) or voluntary sojourners in a foreign country. NIV uses the terms “aliens” and “strangers.”

PILGRIM, PILGRIMAGE. Terms used in KJV to tr. Heb. and Gr. words that normally have a different connotation.

2. In the NT the term “pilgrim” (KJV) trs. παρεπίδημος, G4215, one who stays in a place as a stranger or visitor, to describe Christians whose final citizenship is in heaven and who are regarded as temporary dwellers on earth (Heb 11:13; 1 Pet 2:11).

In addition to regular and legitimate pilgrimages, the prophets make it clear that some in Israel frequented pagan shrines where the local rites all but obliterated the worship of Yahweh (Amos 4:4, 5; 5:5, 6). The reforms of Josiah (2 Kings 23:1-25) sought to do away with much of this worship at ancient pilgrim centers and to concentrate legitimate worship at the central sanctuary in Jerusalem. The burden of Deuteronomy is along this line.


R. Brinker, The Influence of Sanctuaries in Early Israel (1946); R. de Vaux, AIs (1962), 484-517.

International Standard Bible Encyclopedia (1915)

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