A Returning for Repetition and Explanation.

Pros-a-pod’-o-sis, a giving back to, or return. It is from πρός (pros), to and ἀπόδοσις (apodosis),a giving back; (from ἀπόδιδωμι [apodidomi], to give back, return).

The figure is so called because after the mention of two or three words or subjects together, there is a return to them again, and they are repeated separately for purposes of definition or explanation.

The Latins called it REDITIO (from redire), which means the same thing, a going or returning back; or REDDITIO (from reddire), a giving back. They called it also SEJUGATIO, a disjunction or separation, from sejungo, to unyoke (jugum, a yoke),
or disjoin, because of the separation of the words or subjects which takes place: first being mentioned or yoked together, and then unyoked and mentioned separately.

For the same reason they called it DISJUNCTIO, disjunction.

The Greeks used a similar descriptive word when they called the figure DIEZEUGMENON (Di-e-zeug’-me-non), from zeugma, a yoke, i.e., an unyoking,
or disjunction.

John 16:8-11 —“And when he is come, he will reprove (marg., convince) the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment:-
“Of sin, because they believe not on me;
“Of righteousness, because I go to my Father, and ye see me no more;
“Of judgment, because the prince of this world is judged.”

Here, after the mention of the three words together, “sin,” “righteousness,” and “judgment,” the Lord returns to them again, and repeats them separately, for the purpose of explaining and more particularly defining them. Thus we learn that the mission and work of the Holy Ghost with regard to the world was to bring it in guilty (for that is the meaning of the word) concerning these three important facts.

(1) “Sin” is not, as man regards it, some mere yielding to the lusts of the flesh,
but a refusal to believe God’s Gospel concerning His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ.
That is sin in God’s sight.

(2) “Righteousness.” Seeing they rejected Christ, and would not believe on Him,
He was, in righteousness, removed from the earth, and is returned to the Father, until He comes again in…

(3) “Judgment.” For the prince of this world has been judged, sentence has been passed upon him, and ere long it will be put into execution.

Rom. 11:22 —“Behold therefore, the goodness and severity of God: on them which fell, severity; but toward thee, goodness, if thou continue in his goodness; otherwise thou also shalt be cut off.”

Here, the return to the two words is not direct, as in John 16:8-11, but in an Epanodos (q.v.),





The statement refers to the Gentiles as such (see verse 13, “I speak to you, Gentiles”), and cannot refer to the Church of God; for, of the members of Christ’s Body it has been already stated and declared in chapter 8, that there is no condemnation, and no separation. To interpret Rom. 11 of the Church, and not of the Gentiles as Gentiles is not only to miss the whole teaching conveyed by the structure (see page 385) as to the separate Doctrinal and Dispensational sections of the Epistle, but it is to make the grace of God of no effect, and to destroy the standing of the Christian, and his eternal preservation in Christ.

Phil. 1:15-17 —“Some indeed preach Christ even of envy and strife; and some also of good will: The one preach Christ of contention, not sincerely, supposing to add affliction to my bonds: But the other of love, knowing that I am set for the defence * of the Gospel.” *(defence and defense are both acceptable spellings).

Here, after having first stated the two classes, he returns to them to explain his meaning further.

From “Figures Of Speech Used In The Bible” by E. W. Bullinger,
(Public Domain) page 394-396. Adapted for website compatibility.
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