Maran-a'tha (Μαρὰν ἀθά, from the Arameaan מָרָן אֲתָה, maran'athah', our Lord comes, i.e. to judgment, Buxtorf, Lex. Chald. col. 1248, and so found in the Peshito version), a phrase added to the sentence of excommunication by way of appeal to the divine Head of the Church for ratification (1Co 16:22). SEE ANATHEMA. "In the A. V. it is combined with the preceding 'anathema,' but this is unnecessary; at all events it can only be regarded as adding emphasis to the previous adjuration. It rather appears to be added 'as a weighty watchword' to impress upon the disciples the important truth that the Lord was at hand, and that they should be ready to meet him (Alford, Gr. Test. ad loc.). If, on the other hand, the phrase be taken to mean, as it may, 'our Lord has come,' then the connection is, 'the curse will remain, for the Lord has come who will take vengeance on those who reject him.' Thus the name 'Maronite' is explained by a tradition that the Jews, in expectation of a Messiah, were constantly saying Maran, i.e. Lord; to which the Christians answered Maranatha, the Lord is come, why do you still expect him? (Stanley, Corinthians, ad loc.)."

Definition of maranatha

See also the International Standard Bible Encyclopedia.

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