July 8, 2024
Ministry Voice

Exploring the Meaning of Ananias in Greek


Parts of Speech: Noun Masculine

Ananias Definition

NAS Word Usage – Total: 11
Ananias = “whom Jehovah has graciously given”

  1. a certain Christian at Jerusalem, the husband of Sapphira Acts 5:1-
  2. a Christian at Damascus Acts 9:10-
  3. a son of Nedebaeus, and high priest of the Jews c. A.D. 47-59. In the year 66, he was slain by the Sacarii. Acts 23:2


What is the significance of Ananias in the New Testament?

In the New Testament, the name Ananias holds significant meaning and plays a crucial role in the early Christian narrative. Ananias appears in the Book of Acts, specifically in two instances that highlight his importance in the spreading of Christianity.

The name Ananias has its origins in Greek and holds a specific meaning in the context of the Bible. In Greek, the name Ananias translates to “the Lord is gracious” or “God has shown favor.” This translation is essential in understanding the symbolic significance of this character in the biblical narrative.

The first mention of Ananias occurs in Acts 5:1-11, where he, along with his wife Sapphira, is struck down by God after lying about the price of a piece of property they sold. This event serves as a stark warning against deceit and hypocrisy within the early Christian community. It underscores the importance of honesty and integrity in the practice of faith.

Another prominent mention of Ananias is in Acts 9:10-19, where he is instructed by God to go to a disciple named Saul of Tarsus, who would later become the apostle Paul. Despite initial hesitation due to Saul’s reputation as a persecutor of Christians, Ananias obeys God’s command and plays a crucial role in Saul’s conversion to Christianity. This act of obedience and faith demonstrates Ananias’s role as an instrument of divine intervention and mercy.

How does the name Ananias relate to acts of faith in the Bible?

In the New Testament of the Bible, the name Ananias appears in the book of Acts, known for its significance in demonstrating acts of faith. The name Ananias is of Greek origin and holds a deep meaning in the context of the biblical narrative.

In Greek, the name Ananias is derived from the root words “aner” and “ano.” “Aner” translates to “man” or “human being,” while “ano” means “up” or “above.” When combined, the name Ananias can be understood as “upheld by grace” or “the grace of God.” This interpretation sets the stage for understanding how individuals named Ananias exemplify faith through their actions in the Bible.

One notable account featuring Ananias is found in Acts chapter 9. In this passage, Ananias is directed by God to go to Saul of Tarsus, who was a fierce persecutor of Christians at the time. Despite initial reservations due to Saul’s reputation, Ananias demonstrates immense faith by obeying God’s command. Through Ananias’s act of faith and obedience, Saul’s eyes are miraculously opened, and he becomes one of the most influential figures in early Christianity, known as the apostle Paul.

Another significant mention of Ananias occurs in Acts chapter 5, where a man named Ananias, along with his wife Sapphira, lies to the apostles about their financial contributions to the community. Their deceit is swiftly judged by God, resulting in their deaths. This story serves as a cautionary tale about the importance of integrity and honesty in one’s walk of faith.

The contrasting stories of Ananias in the book of Acts highlight the complexity of faith and the varying outcomes based on one’s actions. Whether through unwavering obedience like Ananias in Acts 9 or through the consequences of deception like Ananias in Acts 5, the name Ananias serves as a reminder of the vital role faith plays in shaping individuals’ destinies.

What is the role of Ananias in the conversion of Saul in the Book of Acts?

In the Book of Acts in the New Testament of the Bible, the character of Ananias plays a crucial role in the conversion of Saul, who later becomes known as the apostle Paul. Ananias is a devout disciple of Jesus residing in Damascus when he receives a divine vision instructing him to go to Saul, who was blinded by a light on the road to Damascus and now awaits Ananias at a specific location.

Ananias initially hesitates, as Saul was known for persecuting Christians, but he obeys the Lord’s command and goes to Saul. Upon reaching him, Ananias lays his hands on Saul, and his sight is miraculously restored. Ananias also baptizes Saul, marking his conversion to Christianity. Through this encounter, Ananias serves as the instrument through which Saul’s eyes are opened not only physically but also spiritually to the truth of Jesus Christ.

The name Ananias itself has significant meaning in Greek in the context of the Bible. In Greek, the name Ananias can be broken down as “Anan” meaning “prayer,” and “ias” meaning “Yahweh” or “God.” Therefore, Ananias can be interpreted to mean “Yahweh is gracious” or “God has shown favor.” This meaning becomes especially poignant in the role Ananias plays in Saul’s conversion, where he becomes the vessel of God’s grace and favor in bringing Saul into the Christian faith.


In conclusion, the Greek name Ananias carries significant historical and biblical meaning. In the context of the Bible, Ananias is often portrayed as a figure of obedience and faith, exemplifying the importance of following God’s will. The name itself conveys the idea of God’s grace or favor, serving as a reminder of the divine influence in the lives of believers. By understanding the origins and implications of the name Ananias in Greek, we can gain a deeper insight into the rich tapestry of meaning woven throughout the scriptures. Through studying such linguistic nuances, we can continue to uncover the profound truths embedded in the biblical text.

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