“One” & “Only” – Different Usages (70)


 This is a study of the usage of the word “one” and “only” to help us understand how they are employed in the  Bible. The two are used in various ways in various contexts. Please be guided accordingly. The enclosed word after the passage is the Hebrew or Greek word taken from Young’s Analytical Concordance of the Bible.   This serious study will help us understand the INC-1914’s use of the word ONE which does not recognize the  “Inclusive One.” Some preachers use the “Yachid-Absolute One / Echad-Unity One Argument” but this argument could be shown to be weak or even wrong.  

A. “One” or “Only” – Sometimes a Collective or Mass Noun 

  • Genesis 11:6 (echad), the people is one. . . 
  • Genesis 32:8 (echad), one company 
  • Exodus 7:7 (echad), one law for them 
  • Deut. 6:4 (echad) LORD our God is one LORD 
  • Judges 20:1 (echad), gathered together as one man 
  • Judges 20:8 (echad), all the people arose as one man 
  • Judges 20:11 (echad), knit together as one man 
  • 1Sam. 13:17 (echad), one company 
  • 2Sam. 2:25 (echad), became one troop 
  • 2Sam. 7:23 (echad), one nation on earth 
  • 1Kings 11:13, 32 (echad), give one tribe to your son 
  • John 10:16, (heis), one fold 
  • 1Cor.10:17; 12:12 (hen), we are one body (locally or universally) 

B. “One ”or “Only”- Applied to Exclusive, Singular Noun, Not 2 or More Items o Persons. Note: It is not true that the  Hebrew word ECHAD is always plural in number.  

  • Exo. 30:10 (echad), one time in a year 
  • 1 Kings 10:22 (echad), one time in a three years 
  • Gen. 2:21 (echad), one of his ribs (one rib of Adam is echad) 
  • Gen. 10:25 (echad), two sons, one was 
  • Gen. 41:5 (echad), upon one stalk 
  • Gen. 42:11 (echad), one man’s sons (one son is echad) 
  • Exodo 29:1 (echad), one young bullock 
  • Exodo 37:8, (echad), one cherub on the end 
  • Deut. 4:39; Josh. 2:11, Yahweh Elohim, none other in heaven & on earth 
  • Ruth 1:4 (echad), name of one is Orpah (one woman is echad) 
  • Eccles. 4:8 (echad), one. . . and. . . not a second 
  • Mark 12:32 (heis), the Lord our God is one 

C. “One” or “Only”- Applied to an Inclusive Noun which Includes Others Mentioned Somewhere Else in the Bible Gen. 22:2, 16 (yachid), Isaac your only son (Ishmael is Abram’s son) 

  • Gen. 41:25 (echad), dream of Pharaoh is one 
  • Deut. 6:4 (echad), The LORD am God is one LORD. 
  • Zech. 14:4 (echad), one LORD. . . his name one 
  • Mtt. 19:17 (heis), none good but one. . . God (other persons are good) 
  • Mtt. 23:8 (heis), one is your master (kathegytas) (see Col. 4:1) 
  • Mtt. 23:9 (heis), one is your Father (pater) (honor your father) 
  • Mk. 10:18 (heis), none good but one, God. . . (other persons are good) 
  • John 10:16 (heis), one Shepherd (Is the Father not a shepherd?)  
  • John 17:3 (monon), know you the only true God 
  • 1Cor. 8:4 (heis) none other God but one 
  • 1Cor. 8:5, (heis), to us there is but one God, the Father
  • 1Cor. 8:6 (heis), and one Lord Jesus (Is the Father not Lord?)  
  • 1Cor. 12:13 (hen), drink into one Spirit (Father is Spirit; Son is Spirit also) Efeso 4:4 (hen), one body (1 congregation is 1 body; 1 body universally) Efeso 4:4 (hen), one Spirit (Father is Spirit, Son is Spirit also) 
  • Efeso 4;5 (heis), one Lord (Father is Lord, Holy Spirit is Lord also) 
  • Efeso 4:5 (heis), one baptism or one immersion (there is baptism in fire) Efeso 4:6 (hen), one God and Father (Christ is also God and Father)

D. “One”or “Only” – Applied to a Unison or Unity, Harmony of Several Items or Persons Gen. 2:24 (echad), they shall be one flesh 

  • Gen. 34:16 (echad), become one 
  • Gen. 34:22 (echad), be one people 
  • Exo. 24:3 (echad), people answered with one voice 
  • Judges 21:6 (echad), one tribe cut off from Israel 
  • ISam. 11:7 (echad), with one consent 
  • 1Chron. 12:38 (echad), were of one heart 
  • 1Chron. 28:11 (echad), of one heart 
  • 2Chron. 5:13 (echad), singers (were) as one. . . over sand 
  • 2Chron. 18:12 (echad), with one assent 
  • 2Chron. 30:12, (echad) singers as one man) 
  • Ezra 3:1 (echad), together as one man 
  • Jer. 32:39 (echad) give them one heart, one way 
  • Ezek. 11:19 (echad), give them one heart 
  • Ezek. 37:17, (echad), two sticks became one stick 
  • Malachi 2:15 (echad), did He not make them one? 
  • John 10:16, 17 (mia, heis), they become one flock, one shepherd 
  • John 10:30 (hen), I and my Father are one 
  • John 17:11:21, 22, 23 (hen), one (the disciples unity, Father-Son unity
  • 1Cor 3:8 (hen) he who plants, he who waters are one 
  • 1Cor 6:4, (heis), none other God but one (not the multiplicity of gods)
  • 1Cor.6:16 (hen), joined to an harlot, one body (unity of emotion, action)
  • 1Cor.6:17 (hen) joined to the Lord is one spirit (singly, collectively)
  • 1Cor.10:17; 12:12 (hen), we are one body (unity of the body politic)
  • 1Cor.10:17 (hen), we being many are one bread (as a lump, it is one group)
  • Galatians 3:28 (heis), we are all one in Christ (unity of believers under Christ
  • Ephesians 2:14 (hen), made both one, (the Jews and Gentiles) 
  • Ephesians 2:15 (hen), of twain one new man (Jews and Gentiles)  
  • Ephesians 2:16 (hen), reconcile both unto God in one  
  • Ephesians 4:4 (hen), one body (unity locally. universally) 
  • Ephesians 4:4 (hen), one spirit (attitude, feeling) 
  • Phil. 1:27 (heis), stand in one spirit (unity of Christian believers) 
  • Phil. 2:2 (heis), one accord, one mind (unity in Christian endeavors) Colossians 3:15 (heis), called in one body (unity in the one church) Hebrews 2:11 (heis), sanctified are all of one (unity under Christ) 
  • 1 John 5:8, (heis), these three agree in one (unity in their testimony) 

E. “One” or “Only”- Applied to a Common Type or Kind 

  • Acts 17:26 (heis), one blood (common to all humans, of one group) 1
  • Cor. 15:40 (heis), glory of the celestial is one (common to one group)

F. “One” or “Only” – Unique or Beloved or Special, not exclusivistic idea.

  • Genesis 22:2, 16 (yachid), Isaac your only son (beloved, unique son) 
  • Prov. 4:3 (yachid), only or beloved in the sight of my mother 
  • Amos 8, 10, (yachid), mourning of an only son, a beloved son 
  • Zech. 12:10, (yachid), as one mourns for his only son, beloved son.