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OBTA'IN, L. obtineo ob and teneo, to hold.

1. To get to gain to procure in a general sense, to gain possession of a thing, whether temporary or permanent to acquiare. this word usually implies exertion to get possession, and in this it differs from receive, which may or may not imply exertion. it differs from acquire, as genus from species acquire being properly applied only to things permanently possessed but obtain is applied both to things of temporary and of permanent possession. We obtain loans of money on application we obtain answers to letters we obtain spirit from liquors by distillation and salts by evaporation. We obtain by seeking we often receive without seeking. We acquire or obtain a good title to lands by deed, or by a judgment of court but we do not acquire spirit by distillation nor do we acquire an answer to a letter or an application.

He shall obtain the kingdom by flatteries. Daniel 11 .

In whom we have obtained an inheritance. Ephesians 1 .

2. To keep to hold.


1. To be received in customary or common use to continue in use to be established in practice.

The Theodosian code, several hundred years after Justinian's time, obtained in the western parts of the empire.

2. To be established to subsist in nature.

The general laws of fluidity, elasticity and gravity, obtain in animal and inanimate tubes.

3. To prevail to succeed. Little used.

Copyright Statement
Dictionary of Words from the King James Bible. Public Domain. Copy freely.
Material presented was supplied by Brandon Staggs and was derived from the KJV Dictionary found on his website located at
The unabridged 1828 version of this dictionary in the SwordSearcher Bible Software.

Bibliography Information
Entry for 'Obtain'. King James Dictionary.

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