July 10, 2024
Ministry Voice

Exploring the Meaning of Anthrakia in Greek


Parts of Speech: Noun Feminine

Anthrakia Definition

NAS Word Usage – Total: 2

  1. a heap of burning coals


What is the significance of Anthrakia in Greek in the Bible?

Anthrakia is a Greek word found in the New Testament of the Bible. In the context of biblical times, Anthrakia referred to a charcoal fire or pit where coals were burning. This word is used specifically in the Gospel of John, chapter 18, verse 18, where Peter warms himself by an Anthrakia while denying his association with Jesus.

The significance of Anthrakia in this biblical passage goes beyond its literal meaning. The use of Anthrakia symbolizes Peter’s internal conflict and spiritual struggle. As he stands by the fire denying his connection to Jesus, he is not only physically warming himself but also distancing himself from his faith and the truth he knows in his heart.

Furthermore, the presence of Anthrakia in this scene serves as a powerful reminder of the consequences of denying one’s beliefs. Just as Peter’s denial by the Anthrakia ultimately leads to his realization and repentance, it highlights the importance of staying true to one’s faith even in the face of adversity.

The use of Anthrakia in this biblical context showcases the rich symbolism and depth of meaning that can be found within the Greek language of the New Testament. It serves as a poignant reminder of the challenges faced by believers and the ultimate redemption that can come from acknowledging and embracing one’s faith.

How is Anthrakia used in the context of biblical symbolism?

In the context of the Bible, the Greek word “Anthrakia” holds significant symbolism and meaning. Derived from the root word “Anthrax,” which means coal or charred substance, Anthrakia is mentioned in various passages of the New Testament.

Anthrakia is used metaphorically in the Bible to represent the concept of burning or fiery coals, which often symbolize purification, judgment, or the intense presence of God. The imagery of Anthrakia is tied to the idea of refining and cleansing, much like how fire purifies gold in a furnace, removing impurities and leaving behind something pure and valuable.

One prominent reference to Anthrakia in the Bible is found in the book of Romans 12:20, where it is written, “On the contrary: ‘If your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink. In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head.'” This verse suggests that by showing kindness and compassion to one’s enemies, one can effectively bring about conviction and remorse in them, symbolized by the burning coals of Anthrakia.

Furthermore, Anthrakia is also mentioned in the Book of Revelation 18:9, describing the destruction and judgment of the great city of Babylon: “When the kings of the earth who committed adultery with her and shared her luxury see the smoke of her burning, they will weep and mourn over her.” Here, Anthrakia is used to convey the intense judgment and catastrophic consequences of sin and rebellion against God.

In Greek, Anthrakia signifies more than just fiery coals; it embodies the transformative power of fire and the symbolic implications of purification and judgment. Its usage in the Bible serves to highlight the dual nature of fire as both a means of refining and purifying, as well as a tool of judgment and destruction.

What does Anthrakia symbolize in Greek within the biblical narrative?

In the context of the Bible, the word “Anthrakia” holds significant symbolism and meaning. The term “Anthrakia” originates from the Greek language and is used in the New Testament to refer to a charcoal fire. This particular word appears only once in the Bible, in the Gospel of John chapter 18, verse 18.

The mention of Anthrakia in the Bible holds deep symbolism, especially in the account of Peter’s denial of Jesus. In John 18:18, it is described how Peter warms himself by a charcoal fire in the courtyard of the high priest while Jesus is being interrogated inside. Soon after, Peter denies Jesus three times, as predicted by Jesus earlier.

The presence of the Anthrakia, or charcoal fire, serves as a poignant backdrop to Peter’s denial. The charcoal fire not only provides physical warmth to Peter but also symbolizes the inner turmoil and fear he experiences as he distances himself from Jesus. It represents the moment of weakness and betrayal, where Peter’s loyalty falters in the face of danger.

Moreover, the charcoal fire can be seen as a symbol of purification and restoration in the biblical narrative. After Peter’s denial, he encounters Jesus again by the sea of Galilee in John 21. In this encounter, Jesus reinstates Peter and reaffirms his love and commitment. It is by another charcoal fire that Peter is given the opportunity to repent and reconcile with Jesus, highlighting the theme of redemption and forgiveness.

In the broader biblical context, fire often symbolizes divine purification, judgment, and transformation. The Anthrakia, in its portrayal in Peter’s denial and restoration, encapsulates the complexities of human frailty, repentance, and the unending grace of God.


In conclusion, the word “Anthrakia” holds significant meaning in the context of the Bible. Derived from the Greek language, Anthrakia refers to live coals or burning charcoal, symbolizing purification and refinement. Through various biblical passages such as Romans 12:20 and Proverbs 25:22, Anthrakia exemplifies the transformative power of God’s love and mercy in refining believers through trials and tribulations. Understanding the depth of this term enriches our comprehension of biblical teachings and serves as a reminder of the purifying nature of divine grace in our lives.

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