©2003 William E. Wenstrom, Jr.

Bible Ministries

1
Homoioma

A. Homoioma (o coi. co) belongs to the following word group:
1. Homoios (o coioς ) (adjective), “like, similar, resembling.”
2. Homoios (oovocoi oς) (adverb), “likewise, in the same way, similarly.”
3. Homoiotes (oovocoio +nς ) (noun), “resemblance, likeness, similarity, correspondence.”
4. Homoioo (oovocoio .) (verb), “to make like, to be like, to compare.”
5. Homoiosis (oovocoi .oiς) (noun), “likeness, resemblance, image.”
6. Homoioma (o coi. co) (noun), “likeness, image, copy, appearance.”
7. Aphomoioo (o oocoio .) (verb), “to make like, to become like, to become similar.”
8. Paromoios (nooo coioς) (adjective), “like, similar, almost like.”
9. Paromoiazo (nooocoi¯.) (verb), “to be like, to be very similar to.”
10. Homoiopathes (oovocoiono0n ς) (adjective), “with the same nature, with like passions or feelings.”
B. Classical Usage
1. Homoioma is “what is made similar, copy, like-shaped, likeness, image.”
2. The stress lies on correspondence and similarity with the reference to the concrete, individual form.
3. The word is rare is secular Greek.
4. It occurs in Plato, Aristotle, Epicurus and occasionally in the papyri and always has the concrete
sense of “copy” rather than the abstract sense of likeness or correspondence.
5. It is thus synonymous to eikon (:i i. v).
6. Eikones and homoiomata are often used as equivalents (Plato, Phaedr. 250b).
7. Homoiomata and eikones are in Plato the earthly copies of the heavenly prototypes.
8. But there is often a distinction between the 2 words.
9. Eikon represents the object, whereas homoioma emphasizes the similarity, but with no need for an
inner connection between the original and the copy.
10. Eikon is considered more as an entity in itself, whereas homoioma stresses more the element of
comparison.
C. LXX Usage
1. Homoioma occurs frequently in the LXX.
2. It appears some 40 times including non-canonical LXX writings.
3. The LXX uses homoioma to translate the Hebrew temunah which is translated “similitude” or
“likeness.”
4. The word is used for demuth (jwmd), tavnith (jynbt), temunah (hnwmt) and infrequently `ayin (oya).
D. NT Usage
1. Homoioma appears 6 times in the NT (Rom. 1:23; 5:14; 6:5; 8:3; Phil. 2:7; Rev. 9:7).
2. Bauer lists the following meanings for the word in the NT (A Greek-English Lexicon of the New
Testament and Other Early Christian Literature page 567):
a. “likeness” (Rom. 5:14; 6:5).
b. “image, copy” (Rom. 1:23).
c. “form, appearance” (Rev. 9:7).
d. “similar to, looking like” (Rom. 8:3; Phil. 2:7)
3. The New Thayer’s Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament lists the following definitions for the
word in the NT (page 445):
a. “figure, image, likeness, representation” (Rev. 9:7).
b. “likeness, resemblance (inasmuch as that appears in an image or figure), frequently such as
amounts well-nigh to equality or identity (Rom. 1:23; 5:14; 6:5; 8:3; Phil. 2:7).
4. Louw and Nida define homoioma as “the state of being similar to something- ‘similarity, likeness,
being similar.’ (Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament Based On Semantic Domains 2 volumes)
5. Vine’s Expository Dictionary of New Testament Words states that homoioma “denotes that which is
made like something, a resemblance”:
a. Concrete sense, Rev. 9:7, “shapes, likenesses”
©2003 William E. Wenstrom, Jr. Bible Ministries

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b. Abstract sense, Rom. 1:23, “likeness (of an image)”; 5:14, “(the) likeness of Adam’s
transgression”; 6:5, “(the) likeness (of His death); 8:3, “(the) likeness (of sinful flesh); Phil. 2:7,
“the likeness of men.”

” ©2003 William E. “(the) likeness of Adam’s transgression”. “likeness (of an image)”. 2:7.b. Phil. Abstract sense. 8:3. Wenstrom. 1:23. 6:5. “the likeness of men. 5:14. Bible Ministries 2 . “(the) likeness (of His death). Jr. Rom. “(the) likeness (of sinful flesh).

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