Christos or Anointed
Updated: Apr 27
Christos or Anointed
I was recently tipped off to something I had not ever really thought about. The word Christos, or Christ, or Anointed, Strong’s Concordance # G5547, was first used in the First Covenant in the Septuagint, translated from the Hebrew Bible between 300-200 BC. Christos appears 41 times in various forms in the Septuagint version of the First Covenant, or Tanach. It is from this ancient Koine Greek word that we get the modern title name of Jesus Christ, or Jesus the Anointed, or Jesus Messiah, or Yeshua Messiah. Christos was translated from the Hebrew word Mashiyach, Strong’s Concordance # H4899, as found in the Hebrew version of Leviticus 4:5 and other passages. We modern Messianic believers often say Yeshua haMashiach, as a way to describe Yeshua the Messiah.
The word Christos was used by the Hebrew scholars that translated the Hebrew Bible into Greek, about 300 years before Yeshua’s ministry. Long before the New Covenant authors penned the transliterated word christos. Yeshua’s descriptive title christos was used for many centuries before he showed up on earth to walk in his anointing in the flesh as Christ or Messiah or Mashiach.
Here’s an image of the word Christos, translated to mean “anointed” in English, from Leviticus 4:5 in the English/Greek Interlinear Septuagint.
Here’s an image of the word Christo, from Isaiah 45:1 in the English/Greek Interlinear Septuagint.
Christo here is translated to mean “my anointed”.
What I find so fascinating about this word Christos, is that most modern translations of the New Covenant don’t translate this word, they just transliterate the word to Christ, which has become synonymous with the name Jesus Christ. But really, Christ is more of a title, not part of Yeshua’s name. He is Jesus the Anointed, or Yeshua the Anointed, Yeshua haMashiach, or Yeshua Messiah. Christos is simply a descriptive title for Yeshua. It describes him as being the Anointed of Yehowah. He is our anointed Lord and Savior, anointed by Ruach ha’Kodesh.
In my Son Of Man Bible, SOMB, in the New Covenant portion of the Bible, I’ve chosen to translate ιησου χριστου as Yeshua Messiah, for easy readability, as seen in Matthew 1:1. Andrew, when speaking to his brother Simon Peter in John 1:41, actually used the Greek word Messias, Strong’s # 3323, which also means anointed. This word was also used in John 4:25 by the woman at the Well of Jacob in Samaria. I also translated messias as Messiah for readability.
So, here’s the questions in my mind that I would like answers to someday: Why, over the last 500 years of English Bible translations, have the translators of the New Covenant not translated christos and its variants as anoint, anointed, or anointing, instead of just transliterating the word christos as Christ? Why is there not consistency of translation from the ancient Greek Septuagint of the First Covenant into the New Covenant? Is it just another, or maybe the first and most significant, attempt to pull Yeshua haMashiach out of his original Hebrew/Jewish history, culture, and context to make him fit better in the pagan Roman Sunday-go-to-meeting system? Hmmm… I checked the Latin Vulgate, it transliterates christou or christos into christo (Isa. 45:1) or Christi (Mat. 1:1), so the transliteration tradition goes way back at least 1600 years!
In Luke 4:18 we see a form of the word anointing, which in the original Hebrew, the root meaning of anointing is “to rub”, meaning to rub with oil, specifically olive oil, Strong’s H4886. Luke 4:18-19, ““The Ruach of Yehowah is upon me, because he anointed me to tell the good news to the poor. He has sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom to the captives, and recovery of sight to the blind, to set free those who are oppressed, 19to proclaim the year of Yehowah’s grace.”” Today, we are anointed with Ruach ha’Kodesh to accomplish his work in our world. The Ruach gives us many ministry gifts to do his will. He gives us of his power to overcome our weaknesses and sin and to move forward boldly in his anointing! You can and should stop sinning. You have the power inside of you to do that. That’s what repenting is all about, turn from your sin and turn to Yehowah and serve and love him. You can proclaim and teach the Word, you can heal sick people, you can deliver demon possessed people. You can raise dead people back to life through the power of Ruach ha’Kodesh living in you! Get out there and walk in your anointing!