Revelation 11:2 left us with a question about the use of the word “gentiles” or “nations” depending on the translation. The word used is the same one that we get our English word “ethnic” from.
Here is some thoughts on that for us to consider…
- The Nelson Study Bible notes (NKJV Nelson Bible Publishers) mention that the word used can mean either “A people; or a nation other than Israel.” It also pointed out the same word is translated “nations” when used in Revelation 10:11 and 11:9.
- Eugene Peterson, a biblical language scholar and the guy that wrote The Message paraphrase Bible, paraphrased the word as “non-Jewish peoples.”
- The Blue Letter Bible online study tool, points to the Strongs Concordance as the Greek word used is “éthnos, eth’-nos; a race (as of the same habit), i.e. a tribe; specially, a foreign (non-Jewish) one (usually, by implication, pagan):—Gentile, heathen, nation, people.” It also points out that the word is translated in four different terms, depending on the context, as gentiles, nations, heathen, peoples.