|Noah Webster's Dictionary|
1. (v. t.) To drive or urge with force, or irresistibly; to force; to constrain; to oblige; to necessitate, either by physical or moral force.
2. (v. t.) To take by force or violence; to seize; to exact; to extort.
3. (v. t.) To force to yield; to overpower; to subjugate.
4. (v. t.) To gather or unite in a crowd or company.
5. (v. t.) To call forth; to summon.
6. (v. i.) To make one yield or submit.
Int. Standard Bible Encyclopedia
kom-pel': Our English word always has in it now the flavor of force, not always, however, physical. It may be strong moral urgency, though "constrain" better expresses this.
1. In the Old Testament:
There are several words indicative of such strong pressure:
(1) 'anac "to press": "none could compel" to drink (Esther 1:8);
(2) nadhach, "to drive," "force": "compelled Judah thereto" (the King James Version, the Revised Version, margin); "led Judah astray" the Revised Version (British and American) (2 Chronicles 21:11). The same word rendered "force," as the adulteress by flattering words her victim (Proverbs 7:21);
(3) 'adhadh, "to serve": not to compel him to serve as a bond servant (Leviticus 25:39 the King James Version, the Revised Version (British and American) "make him serve");
(4) parats, "to break forth upon," "urge": "his servants compelled him" (1 Samuel 28:23 the King James Version, the Revised Version (British and American) "constrained").
2. In the New Testament:
In the New Testament two words are found:
(1) aggareuo: The word is of Persian origin and means to employ a courier. The Aggaroi were public couriers stationed by appointment of the kings of Persia, at fixed localities, with horses ready for use, to transmit speedily from one to another the royal messages. These couriers had authority to press into their service, in case of need, horses, vessels, and even men, they might meet (Josephus, Ant, XIII ii, 3); "compel thee to go a mile" (Matthew 5:41 the King James Version; the Revised Version, margin "impress"); "compelled Simon to bear his cross" (Matthew 27:32 Mark 15:21 the King James Version; the Revised Version, margin "impressed").
(2) anagkazo, "to constrain," whether by force, threats, entreaties, persuasion, etc.: "compel them to come in" (Luke 14:23 the King James Version; the Revised Version (British and American) "constrain"). This has been a favorite text of religious persecutors. As Robertson says in his history of Charles V, "As they could not persuade, they tried to compel men to believe." But it simply means that utmost zeal and moral urgency should be used by Christians to induce sinners to enter the Kingdom of God. Compare Acts 26:11.
George Henry Trever
Compel (10 Occurrences)
Matthew 5:41 Whoever compels you to go one mile, go with him two. (Root in WEB KJV WEY ASV DBY)
Mark 15:21 They compelled one passing by, coming from the country, Simon of Cyrene, the father of Alexander and Rufus, to go with them, that he might bear his cross. (Root in WEB KJV WEY ASV DBY RSV)
Luke 5:34 "Can you compel the bridal party to fast," replied Jesus, "so long as they have the bridegroom among them? (WEY)
Luke 14:23 "The lord said to the servant,'Go out into the highways and hedges, and compel them to come in, that my house may be filled. (WEB KJV WEY DBY WBS NAS RSV)
2 Corinthians 10:2 I beseech you not to compel me when present to make a bold display of the confidence with which I reckon I shall show my 'courage' against some who reckon that we are guided by worldly principles. (WEY)
2 Corinthians 12:11 I have become foolish in boasting. You compelled me, for I ought to have been commended by you, for in nothing was I inferior to the very best apostles, though I am nothing. (Root in WEB KJV WEY ASV DBY WBS YLT NAS)
Galatians 2:14 But when I saw that they didn't walk uprightly according to the truth of the Good News, I said to Peter before them all, "If you, being a Jew, live as the Gentiles do, and not as the Jews do, why do you compel the Gentiles to live as the Jews do? (WEB KJV ASV DBY WBS YLT NAS RSV)
Galatians 6:12 As many as desire to look good in the flesh, they compel you to be circumcised; only that they may not be persecuted for the cross of Christ. (WEB WEY ASV DBY NAS RSV NIV)
Leviticus 25:39 And if thy brother that dwelleth by thee be waxen poor, and be sold unto thee; thou shalt not compel him to serve as a bondservant: (KJV DBY WBS)
Esther 1:8 And the drinking was according to the law; none did compel: for so the king had appointed to all the officers of his house, that they should do according to every man's pleasure. (KJV JPS ASV RSV)