3162. machaira
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machaira: a short sword or dagger
Original Word: μάχαιρα, ας, ἡ
Part of Speech: Noun, Feminine
Transliteration: machaira
Phonetic Spelling: (makh'-ahee-rah)
Short Definition: a sword
Definition: a sword.

HELPS word-Studies

3162 χaira – properly, a slaughter-knife; a short sword or dagger mainly used for stabbing; (figuratively) an instrument for exacting retribution.

NAS Exhaustive Concordance
Word Origin
perhaps from machomai
a short sword or dagger
NASB Translation
sword (23), swords (6).

STRONGS NT 3162: μάχαιρα

μάχαιρα, genitive μαχαίρας (so (with R G) Lachmann in Luke 21:24) and μαχαίρης, dative μάχαιρα. (so (with R G) Lachmann in Luke 22:49; Acts 12:2) and μαχαίρῃ (between which forms the manuscripts vary, cf. (Scrivener, Collation, etc., p. lvi.; Tdf. Proleg., p. 117; WHs Appendix, p. 156a); Winers Grammar, 62 (61); Buttmann, 11; Delitzsch on Hebrews 11:34, p. 584 note), , (akin to μάχη and Latinmactare);

1. a large knife, used for killing animals and cutting up flesh: Homer, Pindar, Herodotus, at.; hence, Genesis 22:6, 10; Judges 19:29 Alex., for מַאֲכֶלֶת.

2. a small sword, distinguished from the large sword, the ῤομφαία (Josephus, Antiquities 6, 9, 5 ἀποτεμνει τήν κεφαλήν τῇ ῤομφαία τῇ ἐκείνου (Goliath's), μάχαιραν, οὐκ ἔχων αὐτός), and curred, for a cutting stroke; distinct also from ξίφος, a straight sword, for thrusting, Xenophon, r. eq. 12, 11, cf. Hell. 3, 3, 7; but the words are frequently used interchangeably. In the N. T. universally, a sword (the Sept. often for חֶרֶב): as a weapon for making or repelling an attack, Matthew 26:47, 51, 52,(55); Mark 14:43, 47; Luke 22:36, 38, 49, 52; John 18:10; Acts 16:27; Hebrews 11:37; Revelation 6:4; Revelation 13:10,(14); by a Hebraism, στόμα μαχαίρας, the edge of the sword (חֶרֶב פִּי, Genesis 34:26; Joshua 8:24; 1 Samuel 13:22; Judges 3:16, etc. (but in the Sept. the rendering στόμα ξίφους or στόμα ῤομφαίας is more common)): Luke 21:24; Hebrews 11:34; μάχαιρα δίστομος (see δίστομος), Hebrews 4:12. of the sword as the instrument of a magistrate or judge: death by the sword, Romans 8:35; ἀναιρεῖν τινα μάχαιρα, Acts 12:2; τήν μαχαίρας φόρειν, to bear the sword, is used of him to whom the sword has been committed, viz. to use when a malefactor is to he punished; hence, equivalent to to have the power of life and death, Romans 13:4 (so ξίφος, ξιφη ἔχειν, Philostr. vit. Apoll. 7, 16; vit. sophist. 1, 25, 2 (3), cf. Dion Cass. 42, 27; and in the Talmud the king who bears the sword, of the Hebrew king). Metaphorically, μάχαιρα, a weapon of war, is used for war, or for quarrels and dissensions that destroy peace; so in the phrase βαλεῖν μάχαιραν ἐπί τήν τήν, to send war on earth, Matthew 10:34 (for which Luke 12:51 says διαμερισμόν); μάχαιρα τοῦ πνεύματος, the sword with which the Spirit subdues the impulses to sin and proves its own power and efficacy (which sword is said to be ῤῆμα Θεοῦ (cf. Buttmann, 128 (112))), Ephesians 6:17 (on the genitive in this passage cf. Ellicott or Meyer).


Probably feminine of a presumed derivative of mache; a knife, i.e. Dirk; figuratively, war, judicial punishment -- sword.

see GREEK mache

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