More on Kroegers' "evidence"

In response to my earlier posting, Mr. Wigtil writes:

>Regarding word meanings (a topic addressed here often before), scholars of 
>any stripe need to determine word meanings from close study of the texts 
>and their contexts,   * not *   from mere "glib" repetition of lexica.

Of course! - but the advantage to the lexica is that they provide (usually)
some contexts from a variety of sources, giving one a firmer idea of how that 
word was customarily used.  Basing a word meaning *solely* on a hypothetical
historical context of a single text which is itself controversial is what I 
object to.

Mr. Wigtil continues:
>This is particularly true for hapax legomena or for NT hapaxes.  Does 
>anyone simply fall back on the lexica for Matthew's "epiousios", for 
>example?  Is that ever considered sufficient scholarship?  The modern 
>academy was born when it began questioning Aristotle and other authority 
>documents (of course, Euripides was reviled for just such advice...see the 
>quotation below).  The Kroegers question the lexica and the translations.  
>I should think lexicographers and translators would be happy for any 
>discussion of the cruxes they so often encounter in ancient texts.

Authenteo is indeed a hapax in the NT, but not in the larger literature.  It is
never wrong to question the lexica, but one should have more than hypothetical
evidence when challenging a lexical conclusion based on a variety of external
evidences.  And even in cases where there is no external evidence, how much 
credence would anyone place in an important theological conclusion based 
on a hypothetical meaning for epiousios, which meaning is in turn based
on a particular and not well substantiated reconstruction of the historical
situation of the original recipients of Matthew?  (sorry about the long 

Mr. Wigtil again:
>And in defense of the Kroegers' effort--whatever their conclusions--I would 
>take issue with any review that claimed their assertions were done "sans 
>evidence".  It is one thing to say that they arrived at incorrect 
>conclusions from their evidence or to say that the evidence presented was 
>irrelevant...quite another to make statements about the book that are 
>untrue, for there is a substantial amount of evidence.  I am not prepared 
>to declare on its validity, but that is not what Baugh was said to have 
>maintained.  I appreciate his expertise, but there was much more material 
>than mere Asia Minor epigraphy in their book.

Sorry -- a semantic slip here.  The Kroegers' do adduce plenty of evidence.  
What I should have said is *valid* evidence.  What Mr. Baugh does in his 
review article is demonstrate that the Kroegers' "evidence" is weak, 
tendentious, and irrelevant.   Further, the Kroegers ignore vast quantities
of genuinely relevant evidence regarding the religious situation in Ephesus.

No doubt the hornets will continue to buzz on this one!

**  Dan G. McCartney                  |      I'net: DMCCARTNEY@HSLC.ORG  **
**  Assoc. Prof. of NT                |        WTS: 215 887 5511         **
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