2198 ZAO (141): to live; to be alive as a spiritual being or as a human. God's FCM (NT) refers to humans as existing physically and/or spiritually. Zao never applies to animal, plant or other life forms. When zao is used as a participle it describes either living beings or inanimate things.

Two kinds of spirit beings exist: eternal spirit beings and created spirit beings. Eternal beings existed infinitely back into the past and will live infinitely into the future. The only beings revealed in God's Message having eternal or infinite life are God (Yahweh), the Anointed One (Jesus) and the Pure Spirit. All other spirit beings were created by God and had a beginning point and thus are not eternal. (See "age" (0165 aion ).

Non-human created spirit beings do not require a physical body in which to live (Lk.24.39). But when God creates a human he places each human's spirit in a physical body for a lifetime. A living human is comprised of body, soul and spirit. See "soul" (5590 psuche ) for additional information.


FOR A HUMAN TO LIVE PHYSICALLY; that is, a human spirit living in a physical body. For example, 2Co.1.8: "For we do not want you to be unaware concerning our hardship that happened in Asia, brothers; we were so burdened that [we] despaired even to live (zao)." (Whether a human is alive spiritually is not under consideration in this usage.)

The alternative to "live physically" is to "be dead physically," as in Heb.9.16-17: "For where [there is] a last will (diatheke), there is necessarily [the] death (thanatos) of the [one] making the last will (diatithemai). For [the] last will (diatheke) of dead (nekros) ones is fixed, since it is not in force while the one making the last will (diatithemai) is living (zao)." This alternative is also described in Jn.11.25: "Jesus said to her, 'I am the raising-up (anastasis) and the life (2222 zoe); the one trusting in me will live (zao), even if he should die (apothnesko).'" This alternative is further described by the word "sleep" in 1Co.7.39: "A wife has been bound for as long a time as her husband lives (zao); but if her husband sleeps (2837 koimaomai ) she is free to be married to whom she desires, only in the Master."


LIVE (24) Mt.4.4; 9.18. Mk.5.23; 16.11. Lk.4.4; 10.28; 15.32; 20.38b; 24.23. Jn.4.50,51,53. Act.17.28; 22.22; 25.19,24; 28.4. Rom.7.1. 1Co.7.39; 9.14. 2Co.1.8; 6.9. Heb.9.17. Jas.4.15.

FOR A HUMAN TO LIVE BOTH PHYSICALLY AND SPIRITUALLY; that is, for a human to be alive in his relationship to God, as in Gal.2.19-20: "For through law I died (apothnesko ) to law so that I might live (zao) to God. I have been crucified with the Anointed One; and I no longer live (zao), but the Anointed One lives (zao) within me; and what I now live (zao) in flesh, I live (zao) by trust in the Son of God who is loving me and giving himself to benefit me."

The alternative to "live spiritually" is "dead spiritually" as in Rev.3.1: "...I know your works, that you have a name that you are living (zao) but you are dead (nekros)." Also, Rom.8.12-13: "So then brothers, we are not debtors to the flesh, to live (zao) according to the flesh. For if you+ live (zao) according to flesh you+ are about to die (apothnesko ); but if by spirit you+ put to death (thanato'o) the behavior of the body, you+ will live (zao)."


LIVE (45) Jn.5.25; 6.51b,57c,58; 11.25; 14.19,19. Act.26.5. Rom.1.17; 6.2,10b; 7.9; 8.12,13,13; 10.5; 14.7,8,8,8. 2Co.5.15b. Gal.2.14,19,20, 20,20,20; 3.11,12; 5.25. Php.1.21,22. Col.3.7. 1Th.3.8; 5.10. 2Ti.3.12. Tit.2.12. Heb.2.15; 7.8; 10.38; 12.9. 1Pe.2.24; 4.6. 1Jn.4.9. Rev.3.1.

FOR A SPIRIT BEING TO LIVE; that is, to exist without a physical body, as in Rom.14.11: "For it has been written: 'I live (zao), says the Master; to me every knee will bend and every tongue will confess to God (Isa.45.23).'" Also, Rev.5.14: "And the four living (zao) beings said, 'Let it be so.' and the older ones fell down and showed submission." Lk.8.2 refers to demons as spirit beings: "...and certain women who were healed from evil (poneros) spirits (pneuma) and ailments, [such as] Mary called Magdalene from whom seven demons (daimonia ) went out."


LIVE (10) Rom.6.10a; 14.9a,11. 2Co.13.4,4. Rev.2.8; 5.14; 13.14; 20.4,5.

ZAO DESCRIBING A LIVING HUMAN OR SPIRIT BEING (zao as a participle): For example, Heb.10.31: "[It is] a frightening thing to fall into [the] hands of [the] living (zao) God." Also 1Th.4.15: "For we say this as a statement of the Master; that we, the living (zao) [ones] who are remaining until the presence of the Lord, will surely not precede those having slept (koimaomai )."


LIVING (51) Mt.16.16; 22.32; 26.63; 27.63. Mk.12.27. Lk.2.36; 15.13; 20.38a; 24.5. Jn.6.57a,57b;; 11.26. Act.1.3; 9.41; 10.42; 14.15; 20.12. Rom.6.11,13; 7.2,3; 9.26; 12.1; 14.9b. 1Co.15.45. 2Co.3.3; 4.11; 5.15a; 6.16. Col.2.20. 1Th.1.9; 4.15,17. 1Ti.3.15; 4.10; 5.6. 2Ti.4.1. Heb.3.12; 7.25; 9.14; 10.31; 12.22. 1Pe.4.5. Rev.1.18,18; 4.9,10; 7.2; 10.6; 15.7; 19.20.

ZAO DESCRIBING SOMETHING INANIMATE (zao as a participle); such as living bread or a living hope. For example, Jn.4.11: "She says to him, 'Sir, you have no pail and the well is deep; from where do you have [this] living (zao) water?'" Also 1Pe.1.22-23: "Having purified your souls by obedience to the truth in unpretended brotherly caring, helpfully care for each other from the heart earnestly, having been born again, not of decaying but of non-decaying seed, through [the] living (zao) and enduring message of God."


LIVING (11) Jn.4.10,11; 6.51a; 7.38. Act.7.38. Heb.4.12; 10.20. 1Pe.1.3,23; 2.4,5.

2222 ZOE (136): life; alive, as the alternative to dead or inanimate. Zoe usually refers to humans, but can also be descriptive of God, as in Jn.5.26: "For as the Father has life (zoe) in himself, so also he gave to the Son to have life (zoe) in himself."

Note in Jn.12.25 the comparison between "sensory-self" (5590 psuche) and "life": "The one loving his sensory-self (psuche) will lose (apollumi) it, but the one disregarding his sensory-self (psuche) in this [human] world will guard it unto [final]-age (aionios ) life (zao)".

[FINAL]-AGE LIFE; (AIONIOS ZOE) OCCURS IN THE TEXT; as in Jud.21: "Keep yourselves in [the] loving care of God, awaiting the mercy of our Master, Jesus the Anointed One, into [final]-age life (aionios zoe).


LIFE (44) Mt.19.16,29; 25.46. Mk.10.17,30. Lk.10.25; 18.18,30. Jn.3.15,16,36a; 4.14,36; 5.24a,39; 6.27,40,47,54,68; 10.28; 12.25,50; 14.6; 17.2,3. Act.13.46,48. Rom.2.7; 5.21; 6.22,23. Gal.6.8. 1Ti.1.16; 6.12. Tit.1.2; 3.7. 1Jn.1.2b; 2.25; 3.15; 5.11a,13,20. Jud.21.

[FINAL]-AGE LIFE (ZOE) WHEN AIONIOS IS NOT IN THE TEXT: For example, in 1Jn.3.14: "We know that we have gone out of death (thanatos) into life (zoe), because we helpfully care for the brothers. The [one] not helpfully caring remains in death (thanatos)." Also, Jn.5.28-29: "Do not be amazed [at] this, because an hour comes in which everyone in the tombs will listen to his voice; and the ones having done good things will come out to a raising-up (anastasis) of life (zoe), [and] the ones having practiced worthless things to a raising-up (anastasis) of condemnation (krisis ). Note that "[final]-age life" is the alternative to "condemnation."


LIFE (39) Mt.7.14; 18.8,9; 19.17. Mk.9.43,45. Jn.3.36b; 5.24b,29,40; 6.33,63; 10.10; 11.25; 14.6; 20.31. Act.2.28; 3.15 11.18. Rom.5.17,18; 7.10; 8.2,6; 11.15. 2Co.2.16b; 4.12; 5.4. Eph.4.18. 1Ti.6.19. 2Ti.1.1. 1Jn.3.14; 5.11b,12,12,16. Rev.4.9; 7.17; 21.27.

INANIMATE THINGS PERTAINING TO LIFE (ZOE): "Book of life," Php.4.3, Rev.3.5, 13.8, 17.8, 20.12,15, 21.2; "Tree of life," Rev.2.7, 22.2,14,19; "Water of life," Rev.21.6, 22.1,17; "Crown of life," Jas.1.12, Rev.2.10; "Favor of life," 1Pe.3.7; "Power of life," Heb.7.16; "Bread of life," Jn.6.35,48,51; "Words (rhema) of life," Act.5.20; "Message (logos) of life," Php.2.16; and "light of life," Jn.8.12.


LIFE (24) Jn.6.35,48,51; 8.12. Act.5.20. Php.2.16; 4.3. Heb.7.16. Jas.1.12. 1Pe.3.7. Rev.2.7,10; 3.5; 13.8; 17.8; 20.12,15; 21.6,27; 22.1,2,14,17,19.

PHYSICAL LIFE IN GENERAL, as in Lk.16.25: "But Abraham said, 'Child, remember that you received the good things in your life (zoe) and Lazarus likewise [received] the bad. But now he is comforted here and you are sorrowing.'" Also 2Pe.1.3: "...just as his godly power has given us all things for life (zoe) and godlikeness through the full knowledge of the one having called us to [his] own magnificence and moral goodness."


LIFE (19) Lk.12.15; 16.25. Act.8.33. 17.25. Rom.6.4; 8.10,38. 1Co.3.22; 15.19. 2Co.2.16a. Php.1.20. Col.3.3,4. 1Ti.4.8. Heb.7.3. Jas.4.14. 1Pe.3.10. 2Pe.1.3. Rev.16.3.

THE LIFE OF GOD AND JESUS: For example Rom.5.10: "For, being enemies, if we were reconciled to God through the death of his Son, having been reconciled we shall even more be rescued by his life (zoe)."

LIFE (10) Jn.1.4,4; 5.26,26. Rom.5.10. 2Co.4.10,11. 1Jn.1.1,2a. Rev.11.11.

2227 ZWOPOIEO (12) to make alive, give life to, as in Jn.5.21: "For as the Father raises and gives life to (zwopoieo) the dead ones, so also the Son gives life to (zwopoieo) whom he wants."

MAKE ALIVE 1Co.15.22,36. 2Co.3.6. Gal.3.21. 1Ti.6.13.
GIVE LIFE TO Jn.5.21,21; 6.63. Rom.4.17; 8.11. 1Pe.3.18.
LIFE-GIVING 1Co.15.45.

Back to word index