|Noah Webster's Dictionary|
1. (n.) A step, stair, or staircase.
2. (n.) One of a series of progressive steps upward or downward, in quality, rank, acquirement, and the like; a stage in progression; grade; gradation; as, degrees of vice and virtue; to advance by slow degrees; degree of comparison.
3. (n.) The point or step of progression to which a person has arrived; rank or station in life; position.
4. (n.) Measure of advancement; quality; extent; as, tastes differ in kind as well as in degree.
5. (n.) Grade or rank to which scholars are admitted by a college or university, in recognition of their attainments; as, the degree of bachelor of arts, master, doctor, etc.
6. (n.) A certain distance or remove in the line of descent, determining the proximity of blood; one remove in the chain of relationship; as, a relation in the third or fourth degree.
7. (n.) Three figures taken together in numeration; thus, 140 is one degree, 222,140 two degrees.
8. (n.) State as indicated by sum of exponents; more particularly, the degree of a term is indicated by the sum of the exponents of its literal factors; thus, a2b3c is a term of the sixth degree. The degree of a power, or radical, is denoted by its index, that of an equation by the greatest sum of the exponents of the unknown quantities in any term; thus, ax4 + bx2 = c, and mx2y2 + nyx = p, are both equations of the fourth degree.
9. (n.) A 360th part of the circumference of a circle, which part is taken as the principal unit of measure for arcs and angles. The degree is divided into 60 minutes and the minute into 60 seconds.
10. (n.) A division, space, or interval, marked on a mathematical or other instrument, as on a thermometer.
11. (n.) A line or space of the staff.
Int. Standard Bible Encyclopedia
de-gre' (ma`alah, "a going up" or "ascent," hence, a staircase or flight of steps; "rank": tapeinos, "low"): By derivation it should mean "a step down" (Latin, de, down, gradus, step). It is used, however, of any step, up or down; then of grade or rank, whether high or low.
(1) In its literal sense of step (as of a stair), it is used in the plural to translate Hebrew ma`aloth ("steps"), in the parallel passages 2 Kings 20:9-11 the King James Version (5 t); Isaiah 38:8 the King James Version (3 t), where we read of the "degrees" (the Revised Version (British and American) "steps") on the "dial of Ahaz" (Hebrew "steps of Ahaz"). See DIAL OF AHAZ. It seems to mean steps or progressive movements of the body toward a certain place in the phrase "A So of Degrees" (the Revised Version (British and American) "Ascents"), which forms the title of each of the Psalms 120-134, probably because they were sung on the way up to the great feasts at Jerusalem. See PSALMS
(2) The secondary (but now the more usual) sense of rank, order, grade is found in the following passages:
(a) 1 Chronicles 15:18, "their brethren of the second (degree)," literally, "of the seconds" (Hebrew mishnim; compare 2 Chronicles 28:7, "Elkanah that was next to the king," Hebrew, "the king's second," i.e. in rank);
(b) 1 Chronicles 17:17, "a man of high degree" (Hebrew ma`alah, "step");
(c) Psalm 62:9, "men of low degree. men of high degree," a paraphrase of Hebrew "sons of man. sons of man," the first "man" being Hebrew 'adham ("common humanity"; compare Greek anthropos, Latin homo, Welsh dyn), and the second Hebrew 'ish (man in a superior sense; compare Greek aner, Latin vir, Welsh gwr);
(d) "of low degree" for Greek tapeinos in Sirach 11:1; Luke 1:52 James 1:9;
(e) In 1 Timothy 3:13 the King James Version "a good degree" (Greek bathmos kalos, the Revised Version (British and American) "a good standing") is assured to those who have "served well as deacons." Some take this to mean promotion to a higher official position in the church; but it probably means simply a position of moral weight and influence in the church gained by faithfulness in service (so Hort).
D. Miall Edwards
Degree (19 Occurrences)
Luke 1:52 He hath put down the mighty from their seats, and exalted them of low degree. (KJV ASV BBE WBS RSV)
John 12:36 In the degree that you have light, believe in the Light, so that you may become sons of Light." Jesus said this, and went away and hid Himself from them. (WEY)
Acts 8:33 Being of low degree, his cause was not given a hearing: who has knowledge of his family? for his life is cut off from the earth. (BBE)
1 Corinthians 9:12 If other teachers possess that right over you, do not we possess it much more? Yet we have not availed ourselves of the right, but we patiently endure all things rather than hinder in the least degree the progress of the Good News of the Christ. (WEY)
1 Corinthians 16:2 On the first of the week let each of you put by at home, laying up in whatever degree he may have prospered, that there may be no collections when I come. (DBY)
2 Corinthians 2:5 Now if any one has caused sorrow, it has been caused not so much to me, as in some degree--for I have no wish to exaggerate--to all of you. (WEY NAS)
2 Corinthians 3:18 And all of us, with unveiled faces, reflecting like bright mirrors the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same likeness, from one degree of radiant holiness to another, even as derived from the Lord the Spirit. (WEY RSV)
2 Corinthians 11:5 For I reckon that in nothing I am behind those who are in surpassing degree apostles. (DBY)
2 Corinthians 12:11 I have become a fool; ye have compelled me; for I ought to have been commended by you; for I have been nothing behind those who were in surpassing degree apostles, if also I am nothing. (DBY)
1 Thessalonians 2:16 Who, to make the measure of their sins complete, kept us from giving the word of salvation to the Gentiles: but the wrath of God is about to come on them in the fullest degree. (BBE)
1 Timothy 3:13 For they that have used the office of a deacon well purchase to themselves a good degree, and great boldness in the faith which is in Christ Jesus. (KJV DBY WBS)
James 1:9 Let the brother of low degree rejoice in that he is exalted: (KJV ASV DBY WBS)
1 Peter 4:13 On the contrary, in the degree that you share in the sufferings of the Christ, rejoice, so that at the unveiling of His glory you may also rejoice with triumphant gladness. (WEY NAS)
Revelation 18:7 However much she glorified herself, and grew wanton, so much give her of torment and mourning. For she says in her heart,'I sit a queen, and am no widow, and will in no way see mourning.' (See NAS)
1 Chronicles 15:18 and with them their brothers of the second degree, Zechariah, Ben, and Jaaziel, and Shemiramoth, and Jehiel, and Unni, Eliab, and Benaiah, and Maaseiah, and Mattithiah, and Eliphelehu, and Mikneiah, and Obed-Edom, and Jeiel, the doorkeepers. (WEB KJV JPS ASV WBS)
1 Chronicles 17:17 This was a small thing in your eyes, God; but you have spoken of your servant's house for a great while to come, and have respected me according to the estate of a man of high degree, Yahweh God. (WEB KJV JPS ASV DBY WBS NAS)
Psalms 49:2 Both men of low and men of high degree, rich and poor alike. (DBY)
Psalms 62:9 Surely men of low degree are just a breath, and men of high degree are a lie. In the balances they will go up. They are together lighter than a breath. (WEB KJV JPS ASV DBY WBS NAS)
Daniel 8:24 His power shall be mighty, but not by his own power; and he shall destroy wonderfully, and shall prosper and do his pleasure; and he shall destroy the mighty ones and the holy people. (See NAS)