Matthew 19:12 For there are some eunuchs, which were so born from [their] mother's womb: and there are some eunuchs, which were made eunuchs of men: and there be eunuchs, which have made themselves eunuchs for the kingdom of heaven's sake. He that is able to receive [it], let him receive [it].
Scriptures Talking About The Eunuch
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the chief officer or prime minister of state of Candace (q.v.), queen of Ethiopia. He was converted to Christianity through the instrumentality of Philip (Act 8:27). The northern portion of Ethiopia formed the kingdom of Meroe, which for a long period was ruled over by queens, and it was probably from this kingdom that the eunuch came.
eunuch, had charge of the harem of Ahasuerus (Esther 2:8).
servant of the beautiful, a chief eunuch in the second house of the harem of king Ahasuerus (Esther 2:14).
severe, a eunuch or chamberlain in the palace of Ahasuerus, who conspired with another to murder him. The plot was detected by Mordecai, and the conspirators were put to death (Esther 2:21; 6:2).
literally bed-keeper or chamberlain, and not necessarily in all cases one who was mutilated, although the practice of employing such mutilated persons in Oriental courts was common (2 Kings 9:32; Esther 2:3). The law of Moses excluded them from the congregation (Deut. 23:1). They were common also among the Greeks and Romans. It is said that even to-day there are some in Rome who are employed in singing soprano in the Sistine Chapel. Three classes of eunuchs are mentioned in Matt. 19:12.
a confidential servant of the king (Gen. 37:36; 39:1). In Rom. 16:23 mention is made of "Erastus the chamberlain." Here the word denotes the treasurer of the city, or the quaestor, as the Romans styled him. He is almost the only convert from the higher ranks of whom mention is made (compare Acts 17:34). Blastus, Herod's "chamberlain" (Acts 12:20), was his personal attendant or valet-de-chambre. The Hebrew word "saris", thus translated in Esther 1:10, 15; 2:3, 14, 21, etc., properly means an eunuch (as in the marg.), as it is rendered in Isa. 39:7; 56:3.
lover of horses. (1.) One of the twelve apostles; a native of Bethsaida, "the city of Andrew and Peter" (John 1:44). He readily responded to the call of Jesus when first addressed to him (43), and forthwith brought Nathanael also to Jesus (45,46). He seems to have held a prominent place among the apostles (Matt. 10:3; Mark 3:18; John 6:5-7; 12:21, 22; 14:8, 9; Acts 1:13). Of his later life nothing is certainly known. He is said to have preached in Phrygia, and to have met his death at Hierapolis. (2.) One of the "seven" (Acts 6:5), called also "the evangelist" (21:8, 9). He was one of those who were "scattered abroad" by the persecution that arose on the death of Stephen. He went first to Samaria, where he laboured as an evangelist with much success (8:5-13). While he was there he received a divine command to proceed toward the south, along the road leading from Jerusalem to Gaza. These towns were connected by two roads. The one Philip was directed to take was that which led through Hebron, and thence through a district little inhabited, and hence called "desert." As he travelled along this road he was overtaken by a chariot in which sat a man of Ethiopia, the eunuch or chief officer of Queen Candace, who was at that moment reading, probably from the Septuagint version, a portion of the prophecies of Isaiah (53:6,7). Philip entered into conversation with him, and expounded these verses, preaching to him the glad tidings of the Saviour. The eunuch received the message and believed, and was forthwith baptized, and then "went on his way rejoicing." Philip was instantly caught away by the Spirit after the baptism, and the eunuch saw him no more. He was next found at Azotus, whence he went forth in his evangelistic work till he came to Caesarea. He is not mentioned again for about twenty years, when he is still found at Caesarea (Acts 21:8) when Paul and his companions were on the way to Jerusalem. He then finally disappears from the page of history. (3.) Mentioned only in connection with the imprisonment of John the Baptist (Matt. 14:3; Mark 6:17; Luke 3:19). He was the son of Herod the Great, and the first husband of Herodias, and the father of Salome. (See HEROD PHILIP I. T0001763) (4.) The "tetrarch of Ituraea" (Luke 3:1); a son of Herod the Great, and brother of Herod Antipas. The city of Caesarea-Philippi was named partly after him (Matt. 16:13; Mark 8:27). (See HEROD PHILIP II. T0001764)
the queen of the Ethiopians whose "eunuch" or chamberlain was converted to Christianity by the instrumentality of Philip the evangelist (Acts 8:27). The country which she ruled was called by the Greeks Meroe, in Upper Nubia. It was long the centre of commercial intercourse between Africa and the south of Asia, and hence became famous for its wealth (Isa. 45:14). It is somewhat singular that female sovereignty seems to have prevailed in Ethiopia, the name Candace (compare "Pharaoh," "Ptolemy," "Caesar") being a title common to several successive queens. It is probable that Judaism had taken root in Ethiopia at this time, and hence the visit of the queen's treasurer to Jerusalem to keep the feast. There is a tradition that Candace was herself converted to Christianity by her treasurer on his return, and that he became the apostle of Christianity in that whole region, carrying it also into Abyssinia. It is said that he also preached the gospel in Arabia Felix and in Ceylon, where he suffered martyrdom. (See PHILIP T0002936.)
a vehicle generally used for warlike purposes. Sometimes, though but rarely, it is spoken of as used for peaceful purposes. The first mention of the chariot is when Joseph, as a mark of distinction, was placed in Pharaoh's second state chariot (Gen. 41:43); and the next, when he went out in his own chariot to meet his father Jacob (46:29). Chariots formed part of the funeral procession of Jacob (50:9). When Pharaoh pursued the Israelites he took 600 war-chariots with him (Ex. 14:7). The Canaanites in the valleys of Israel had chariots of iron (Josh. 17:18; Judg. 1:19). Jabin, the king of Canaan, had 900 chariots (Judg. 4:3); and in Saul's time the Philistines had 30,000. In his wars with the king of Zobah and with the Syrians, David took many chariots among the spoils (2 Sam. 8:4; 10:18). Solomon maintained as part of his army 1,400 chariots (1 Kings 10:26), which were chiefly imported from Egypt (29). From this time forward they formed part of the armies of Israel (1 Kings 22:34; 2 Kings 9:16, 21; 13:7, 14; 18:24; 23:30). In the New Testament we have only one historical reference to the use of chariots, in the case of the Ethiopian eunuch (Acts. 8:28, 29, 38). This word is sometimes used figuratively for hosts (Ps. 68:17; 2 Kings 6:17). Elijah, by his prayers and his counsel, was "the chariot of Israel, and the horsemen thereof." The rapid agency of God in the phenomena of nature is also spoken of under the similitude of a chariot (Ps. 104:3; Isa. 66:15; Hab. 3:8). Chariot of the cherubim (1 Chr. 28:18), the chariot formed by the two cherubs on the mercy-seat on which the Lord rides. Chariot cities were set apart for storing the war-chariots in time of peace (2 Chr. 1:14). Chariot horses were such as were peculiarly fitted for service in chariots (2 Kings 7:14). Chariots of war are described in Ex. 14:7; 1 Sam. 13:5; 2 Sam. 8:4; 1 Chr. 18:4; Josh. 11:4; Judg. 4:3, 13. They were not used by the Israelites till the time of David. Elijah was translated in a "chariot of fire" (2 Kings 2:11). Compare 2 Kings 6:17. This vision would be to Elisha a source of strength and encouragement, for now he could say, "They that be with us are more than they that be with them."