b-greek-digest V1 #13

b-greek-digest          Wednesday, 22 November 1995    Volume 01 : Number 013

In this issue:

        Re: 1 Cor 15:29
        Re: Rev. 3:10
        Re.: Rev. 3:10
        Re: Greek font for IBM's
        Re: 1 Corinthians 15:29 (fwd) 
        Re: Greek font for IBM's
        Re: LXX translation
        Re: Fwd: Artemonius
        Re.: Rev. 3:10
        Re: TO TELEION / 1 Cor. 13:10 
        Discourse Functions of the Imperfect in Mark 1-8 


From: Daniel Hedrick <hedrickd@pagesetters.com>
Date: Wed, 22 Nov 1995 13:26:36 +0000
Subject: Re: 1 Cor 15:29

A very good response came in regarding 1 Cor 15:29
I thought I should pass it on to this list.

The Sound of Christianity

     attempting to prove to the Corinthian Saints the reality of the
      literal resurrection from the dead.  He essentially states "There must
      be a resurrection from the dead.  Why would they be baptized for the
      dead if there is no resurrection?"

Again, there's no clear indication this is the case. It's a circular reasoning
process: "This verse supports baptism for the dead, because baptism for the dead
was an accepted practice of the early church. Baptism for the dead was a
practice of the early church because this verse refers to it." It's a circle.
You can't use this verse to establish a fact which is necessary for the
interpretation of this verse to support that "fact." The truth is there is no
reason to believe the Mormon practice of baptizing for the dead was practiced in
the early church.

The greek word here means "in the place of". When a new member is baptized into
a community of believers which has lost a member, then it can be said that the
new person is baptized in the place of the old member.

Ergo, the first conclusion doesn't seem at all clear to me. In fact it seems
entirely illogical, and the other idea seems far more reasonable. (BTW, if you
can eavesdrop on the conversation between White and Watson, you'll probably
learn more. James White is a sharp guy.)

      Anyone claiming that the "they"
      in 1Cor 15:29 refers to anyone other than the Corinthian Saints Paul is
      addressing is at the same time claiming that Paul is a complete idiot.

Well, I wouldn't be so abusive about it, but the point is good, and is the same
one I was making. Paul seems to have been referring to a Christian group.

      The only way Paul's argument can carry any weight at all is if it is the
      Corinthian Saints he is addressing who are being baptized for the dead.

Or. more likely, baptized into the places within the church once held by dead

      In other words, Paul cannot say to himself, "This
      is a false principle, but they believe it, therefore I will make use
      of it and argue as though it were true in order to win the point."  We
      may therefore safely conclude that baptism for the dead is a true
      principle of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

I can agree with that. But that hardly carries the point that baptism for the
dead was practiced in the early church. It simply means that whatever Paul meant
in the first place has to be true. However, there is clearly another
interpretation of the Pauline passage here which supports the rest of the early
church practice much better than the one Watson suggests.

      As to what the principle of baptism for the dead entails, there is
      little question about that either, and honest Protestant and Catholic
      scholars, even though they have no clue to why it was going on, admit
      it.  For example, W.J. Conybeare and J.S. Howson in their classic
      *The Life and Epistles of St. Paul* have the following to say about
      1Cor 15:29:

I wish I had that book. I'd love to see the complete context of the quoted
passage. I've seen altogether to often how a book like that can be quoted out of
context, to twist its words entirely. Look for it in your local university
library, and see if that is what has happened here. I will, too.

      (1) How strange that St. Paul should refer to such a
      superstition without rebuking it!  Perhaps, however, he may have
      censured it in a former letter, and now only refers to it as an
      *argumentum ad homines*.  It has, indeed, been alleged that the
      present mention of it implies a censure; but this is far from evident.

The only way Paul would refer to it without censure is if a) it was being done,
or b) it doesn't mean what Watson means us to think it means. Since there is no
existing evidence apart from this passage which would indicate a to be the case,
it must be b.

      (2) If such a practice did exist in the Apostolic Church, how can we
      account for its being discontinued in the period which followed, when
      a magical efficacy was more and more ascribed to the material act of
      baptism?  Yet the practice was never adopted except by some obscure
      sects of Gnostics, who seem to have founded their custom on this very

And there's your clue: Only the Gnostics, who, even in the few years after
Jesus's death and resurrection, strayed so far from the truth that John felt
compelled to write the fourth Gospel as proof they were wrong, had adopted that
practice. How can it be scriptural, in that case? It wouldn't have been
discontinued in the early church, especially as the author's note that the idea
of baptism was sometimes invested with incredibly magical powers. No, a much
more likely interpretation is that Paul wasn't referring to the Mormon/Gnostic
practice at all, but rather to the simple fact that those new members joining
the church, filling and even overflowing the places left by the martyrs and the
rest of the dead would have no hope unless the dead rise.

      I might add in
      conclusion that James is fully aware of these explanations, as I
      brought them up to him personally several years ago.  He may claim
      that he does not believe them, but what is there not to believe?

James White has this altogether nasty habit of believing only what the Bible
says, not what others read into it. ;{>} That's got to be frustrating to someone
who wants to read all kinds of extra things into it.

      I describe his position as unusual because there are so few who believe

Really? Then why is that particular position (it seems that James White has
presented Watson with the same idea I did you) echoed in so many basic Christian
Theology books? I first ran across it in Ryrie's Basic Theology, for instance. I
would suggest that it's only unusual for a Mormon to believe White's position,
as then it would contradict one of the Mormon rituals. It doesn't seem at all
odd that a Christian would take this (White's and mine) position. After all, we
have to believe what the bible says, not what we *want* it to say. That means we
sometimes have to dig for the meaning of some obscure passages. If we felt free
to re-interpret it whenever we felt like doing it, then we wouldn't need to
spend the time resolving what seem to be contradictory statements (I say *seem*
because there are none, when you dig for the truth).

        This is partially because the effect of
      replacing in the Church a person who has died with someone else who is
      yet living would be a much more valid argument against a ressurection
      than for one, so the interpretation fits neither the text nor the
      context of the verse.

Huh? That makes no sense at all. Replacing a departed member with one (or more)
new member(s) doesn't say anything against the ressurection. After all, the
resurrection of the dead isn't going to happen for a while, and without new
members replacing old ones, the work of the church will cease when the last of
the founding members dies, unless the ressurection comes first. Unless one is
seriously intending to argue that ressurection of the dead happened before the
last founding member of the early church died, that particular position is
completely untenable.


From: "Carlton L. Winbery" <winberyc@linknet.net>
Date: Wed, 22 Nov 1995 08:00:51 -0600
Subject: Re: Rev. 3:10

Paul Watkins wrote,
>In Rev. 3:10 a promise is given to the Church of Philadelphia stating that
>God will "keep them from the hour of trial" - THRHSW EK THS WRAS TON PEIRASMOU.
>As I read this, it promises protection within the world during
>the hour of trial.  Compared with the only other construction of this
>kind in John 17:15, "I do not pray that You take them out of the world,
>but that
>you keep them from evil" - THRHSHS AUTOUS EK TOU PONHROU, that
>interpretation seems substantiated.  However pretrib writers demand that
>THRHSW EK in Rev. 3:10 mean to be removed out of the world, i.e. Rapture before
>the hour of trial.  It seems to me that every grammar or lexicon
>I consult asserts Rev. 3:10 to promise protection from within, not
>exemption out
>Is there anyone who can make a case for THRHSW EK in Rev. 3:10 meaning to
>out of- in the sense which requires a rapture beforehand?
>Please respond directly to me as I am not currently subscribed.  Thank you
>for your help, this list has been a great help to me for quite some time.

I would first say that the answer to your question has a lot to do with the
writer's use of language.  He often makes statements that seem clear on the
surface but must be seen in light of the overall message of a given

The verb THRHEW with the preposition EK can mean to "keep from" or to
"protect from."  The later would not necessarily mean to "remove from."  In
fact I would prefer the later in John 17:15 - "that you protect them from
the evil one."  I know this is contrary to the translation in Brooks &
Winbery, Syntax, p.22.  I think maybe Jim Brooks did that one.

Carlton Winbery
Prof. Religion
LA College,
fax (318) 442-4996


From: "Richard R. Dupont" <rdupont@mail.orion.org>
Date: Wed, 22 Nov 1995 08:45:16 -0800
Subject: Re.: Rev. 3:10

Could respondents also cc to B-GREEK as I, and probably others, would 
be interested in this discussion.  Thanks.

Richard Dupont
Evangel College


From: "Philip L. Graber" <pgraber@emory.edu>
Date: Wed, 22 Nov 1995 10:33:57 -0500 (EST)
Subject: Re: Greek font for IBM's

It appears that someone has pirated the SGREEK font which is owned by 
Silver Mountain Software (hence *S*GREEK). These fonts are not free, nor 
is it legal to freely distribute them. They are not even shareware as far 
as I know.

Philip Graber				Graduate Division of Religion
Graduate Student in New Testament	211 Bishops Hall, Emory University
pgraber@emory.edu			Atlanta, GA  30322  USA


From: Bruce Terry <terry@bible.acu.edu>
Date: Wed, 22 Nov 1995 10:47:25 CST
Subject: Re: 1 Corinthians 15:29 (fwd) 

On Tue, 21 Nov 1995, Daniel Hedrick forwarded a comment on I Cor. 15:29 by
someone named Watson which reads in part:

>The verse, taken in context, allows us to arrive at two firm conclusions:
>    First: The Corinthian Saints were practicing Baptism for the dead.
>    Second: Baptism for the dead is a true and correct principle of
>the Gospel.

I.e., the Mormon Gospel

>The first conclusion is arrived at in the following manner: Paul is
>attempting to prove to the Corinthian Saints the reality of the
>literal resurrection from the dead.  He essentially states "There must
>be a resurrection from the dead.  Why would they be baptized for the
>dead if there is no resurrection?"  There has been a great controversy
>over who "they" are, but there is no reason for question.  Let's bring
>Paul up to our day, and imagine that he were trying to convince you that
>there is to be a literal resurrection.  What if Paul were to say to you,
>"There must be a resurrection from the dead, else why would the Jehovah's
>Witnesses baptize for the dead if there were no resurrection?"  You would
>undoubtedly reply "Stupid, stupid, stupid argument, Paul.  Who cares what
>the Jehovah's Witnesses do or do not do, and what might that have to do
>with what I should or should not believe?"  Anyone claiming that the "they"
>in 1Cor 15:29 refers to anyone other than the Corinthian Saints Paul is
>addressing is at the same time claiming that Paul is a complete idiot.
>The only way Paul's argument can carry any weight at all is if it is the
>Corinthian Saints he is addressing who are being baptized for the dead.

Watson here makes a good point, that Paul's argument must make some kind of
sense to the Corinthians.  He overstates it, however, in claiming that it can
only make sense if the "they" spoken of are the Corinthians addressed.  It is
enough that those baptized hUPER the dead be some that the Corinthians respect,
or at least not disdain.

Further, there is a problem with Watson's claim: it is not usual for Paul to
refer to the Corinthians using a *third* person plural form!

Instead, we find:
inclusive of all the addressees
1) forms of hUMEIS "you" (1:3,4,10; 3:1; 4:14; 5:1; 9:1,2; 10:1; 11:2; 12:1;
			  15:1; 16:1; etc. [the examples could be multipled])
2) second person plural verb ending "you" (6:11; 7:1; 11:17; 14:1; etc.)
   These first two account by far and away for the greatest number of cases.

inclusive of addressees and Paul
3) forms of hHMEIS "we" (8:6)
4) first person plural verb ending "we" (8:1,4)

some of the addressees
5) TINES EN hUMIN "some among you" (15:12)
6) TINES "some" (6:11; 8:7)

hypothetical or indefinite one of the addressees
7) TIS ADELFOS "any brother" (5:11)
8) TIS hMWN "any of you" (6:1)
9) forms of TIS "someone, anyone" (5:1; 7:36; 8:2; 11:16; 15:35)
10) second person singular verb ending "thou" (7:28)

in the statement of general principles (which could apply to the Corinthians)
11) third person singular forms (6:16; 7:1,17,20,39; etc.).

The third person plural is used for all the Corinthians in three notable
exceptions: 1) in the initial address (1:2); 2) in the vocative plural, such as
ADELFOI "brothers" and AGAPHTOI "beloved"; and 3) in the distributional term
MELH "members" as used in chapter 12.

The third person plural is used for subclasses within the Corinthians church:
TOIS AGAMOIS "to the unmarried" (7:8)
TAIS CHRAIS "to the widows" (7:8)
TOIS EME ANAKRINOUSIN "to those examining me" (9:3)
Examples of subclasses could be multiplied, especially in chapter 7

>From this, it is possible that "those baptized hUPER the dead" could refer to
a subclass of individuals within the Corinthian church.

Note however that in the examples of third person plural forms given, the
individuals mentioned in the subclasses could be from outside the Corinthian
congregation as well as within it.  Individuals both inside and outside that
church or from either inside or outside it might want to question Paul's
apostleship (cf. 9:3).

>The second point is easily determined because Paul is an Apostle of
>the Lord Jesus Christ, and a preacher of righteousness.  Satan and his
>minions can, and often do, intertwine their falsehoods with strands of
>truth in order to make their lies and misconceptions more palatable.
>Satan teaches some truth when it suits his purposes.  On the other
>hand, Christ and his followers may not use falsehoods in order to
>promulgate truth.  In other words, Paul cannot say to himself, "This
>is a false principle, but they believe it, therefore I will make use
>of it and argue as though it were true in order to win the point."

Watson may *say* that Paul cannot do this, but this is precisely what he does
do in I Cor. 8 and 9.  In those chapters he is arguing that one should not go
up to an idol's temple to share in a meal.  For the sake of argument, he
assumes his opponents' viewpoint.  In chapter 8 he assumes that "an idol has
no real existence," therefore there is nothing wrong *in itself* in eating in
an idol's temple (he repudiates this in chapter 10, causing confusion for some
exegetes); then he shows that even this causes problems for a weaker brother.
In chapter 9 he assumes that the Corinthians had a right to eat whereever they
wanted to; but then he gives his own example as someone who has given up his
rights for the sake of the gospel.  Because Paul does not make it clear that he
is making these assumptions only temporarily for the sake of argument, there
have been theories that chapter 8 and chapter 10 were parts of two separate
letters, or that Paul changed his mind while writing this letter, and that
chapter 9 is really an excursis on the validity of his apostleship because he
is contradicting the decision of the Jerusalem conference in Acts 15.  Some may
berate Paul for following this line of argumentation that Watson says he should
not and that has been the cause of confusion to scholars, but it was perfectly
appropriate in Greek style.  Demetrius refers to Theophrastus as his authority
"that not all possible points should be punctiliously and tediously elaborated,
but some should be left to the comprehension and inference of the hearer" (_On
Style_ 4; Loeb Classical Library sec. 222).  For more information on this see
my book _A Discourse Analysis of First Corinthians_, pp. 46-47.

>As to what the principle of baptism for the dead entails, there is
>little question about that either, and honest Protestant and Catholic
>scholars, even though they have no clue to why it was going on, admit
>it.  For example, W.J. Conybeare and J.S. Howson in their classic
>*The Life and Epistles of St. Paul* have the following to say about
>1Cor 15:29:
>  "The only meaning which the Greek seems to admit here is a reference
>to the practice of submitting to baptism instead of some person who
>had died unbaptized.


>[Conybeare and Howson, *The Life and Epistles of St Paul* pp 412-413, note 7.]

Conybeare and Howson are wrong in saying that understanding hUPER as referring
to benefit is the only meaning which the Greek can allow.  hUPER can mean a
number of things.  It is true that the most common meaning of hUPER is to
express benefit to the object, and therefore most scholars have so understood
it; the RSV goes so far as to translate hUPER in 15:29 as "on behalf of."  I
freely admit that this is its meaning in II Macc. 12:44, where Judus prays
hUPER the dead in his army (although the text does not say that God heard his
prayer and accepted his sacrifice, only that he did this because he believed
in the resurrection).

While something similar to this may have been practiced by some at Corinth in
regards to baptism, there is another explanation that fits the evidence equally
well.  Another common meaning of hUPER has to do with taking its object as
indirect cause.  Paul uses hUPER in this sense in I Cor. 10:30, where the RSV
translates it "because of."  The literal meaning of hUPER is "over," and even
the English word "over" can take this metaphorical sense as in "No use crying
over spilt milk."  Sometimes in English "over" and "for" are synonyms, as in:
"He mourned over his dead wife for six months" and "He mourned for his dead
wife for six months."

I realize that I am not following scholarly consensus when I suggest that I
favor the latter explanation rather than the former.  But my reason is that
there is no historical evidence that vicarious baptism was ever practiced as
early as the first century A.D.; to say that I Cor. 15:29 is an example is to
beg the question.  On the other hand, it is not especially difficult to find
examples of people who have converted to Christianity following the death of
a loved one because they wanted to be with that person for eternity.  The
Greek admits of such a meaning and it is part of the human experience.

My main point here is not that hUPER means "on account of" but that it does
not *have to* mean "on behalf of."  In English one has to translate it some
way, but the way that it is translated to a large extent determines how readers
of the English Bible will understand it.  For this reason I have avoided in
this post translating it as either "baptized for the dead" or "baptized over
the dead."  To do so is to prejudice the case.

Bruce Terry                            E-MAIL: terry@bible.acu.edu
Box 8426, ACU Station		       Phone:  915/674-3759
Abilene, Texas 79699		       Fax:    915/674-3769


From: Nichael Lynn Cramer <nichael@sover.net>
Date: Wed, 22 Nov 1995 12:00:16 -0400
Subject: Re: Greek font for IBM's

At 10:33 AM 22/11/95, Philip L. Graber wrote:
>It appears that someone has pirated the SGREEK font which is owned by
>Silver Mountain Software (hence *S*GREEK). These fonts are not free, nor
>is it legal to freely distribute them. They are not even shareware as far
>as I know.

Likewise, if someone has something like this that they wish to make
available, please arrange to place them in an accessible place (from which
people can, say, FTP them) or --in the worst case-- post an announcement
and make arrangements to e-mail the files to the interested parties.

Broadcasting them via E-mail is almost always the wrong thing (for example
I'm working on a MAC, as a result the fonts are completely useless to me,
even if they were legal ;-).   Nonetheless, since they came in as an
attachment on a mail-message, I now have to go through the hassle of
"de-installing" them.

(This would be even more of a problem for people with less disk space or
lower bandwidth than I have.)

Nichael                          "... and they opened their thesaurus
nichael@sover.net                      and brought forth gold,
http://www.sover.net/~nichael        and frankincense and myrrh."


From: "Edgar M. Krentz" <emkrentz@mcs.com>
Date: Wed, 22 Nov 1995 12:03:42 -0500
Subject: Re: LXX translation

Ken Litwak wrote
>   This note is a follow-up to your suggestions to me for chapters to
>submit for  my doctoral Greek exam.  Concerning the passage in
>Wisd. of Sol., I don't have handy a translation of this book, so would you
>mind telling me why these chapters (6-9) in particular?  I know that
>Dunn's commentary on Romans makes many comparisons to Wis. of Sol.,
>but I didn't specifi8cally remember it being to this part.  I thought
>I might do a chapter from this book, PS 16 and 110, something from
>Genesis, Isa 61 and hadn't really decided on the other passages.

How many chapters of the LXX do you need to do for your examination? If you
were writing for me, I would probably ask about 15 chapters  minimum.
Anyone can memorize the translation of three or four chapters. I always
include some sight translation of unprepared material on Greek
examinations, either from the NT or the LXX.

You probably do have a handy translation of the Wisdom of Solomon at hand
if you have the NRSV, RSV, or REB on your desk. Each includes the OT
deutero-canonicla books, if you purchase the compelte text. [A suggestion:
Read the complete Apocrypha in English in addition to translating a few
chapters from the Greek.]

Wisdom 6:12-10:1 is a lengthy discussion of SOFIA. I suggested the reading
of it for two reasons.

1. Its Greek will challenge you, especially its vocabulary. Note the 20+
adjectives describing wisdom in 7:22-24. [The syntax is not difficult.]
After you read this much of Wisdom, you will have increased your vocabulary

2. These chapters are highly imprtant for understanding the wisdom
Christology of the NT. You must know Wisdom 7 if you mean to understand
Hebrews 1:q-4, for example.

I could add a third reason. These chapters show the reader who is aware how
much the thought of the hellenistic world has permeated the writer's
language, e.g. the hrase in 8:1 KASI DIOIOKEI TA PANTA XRHSTWS, or the
modification of the four cardinal virtues of Plato [and later Greek
thought] in 8:6-7.

In general, a graduate student in NT hould aid to be able to read most of
the GNT at sit=ght, except for those lists of precious jewels in Apoc. 21,
etc. Wide reading in the LXX will aid that goal, inter alia.


Edgar Krentz, New Testament
Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago
Tel.: 312-256-0752; (H) 312-947-8105


From: "Edgar M. Krentz" <emkrentz@mcs.com>
Date: Wed, 22 Nov 1995 12:04:21 -0500
Subject: Re: Fwd: Artemonius

You wrote:
>According to J. A. Bengel's "New Testament Word Studies" (Grand Rapids,
>Michigan: Kregel Publications, p. 728), concerning Thomas' statement at
>John 20:28, it is said that "Artemonius brings forward a new
>that Thomas calls Jesus Lord, and the Father who inseparably exists in
>him, God:..."  Does anyone know where I can get a copy of the work of
>Artemonius (original language or translation) in which he explains
>himself on this verse (20:28)?

I'll give you what can be given. Artemon was an adoptionist who was
hereticized [to my knowledge] He was picked up by a unitarian named Samuel
Crell [See Bengel on John 1:1] in  a work entitled _Initium evangelii
Joannis ex antiquitate ecclesiastica restitutum, who is one of those whom
Johan Albrecht Bengel opposes.

The works of Artemon [or Artemas] do not survive. He is cited or referred
to in Eusebiuis, _Hist. Ecc._ 5.28; Epiphanius, _Haer._ 65.1. 4 and other
sources. You can find these and other references in the brief entry on
Artemon in the second edition of the _Oxford Dictionary of the Christian
Church_, p. 94.


Edgar Krentz, New Testament
Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago
Tel.: 312-256-0752; (H) 312-947-8105


From: David Moore <dvdmoore@dcfreenet.seflin.lib.fl.us>
Date: Tue, 21 Nov 1995 09:57:16 -0500 (EST)

	I said that the accent on the final sylable was "acute" when I 
meant to say "oxytone;" please pardon the slip up and correct my recent 
post accordingly.

David L. Moore                             Southeastern Spanish District
Miami, Florida                               of the  Assemblies of God
dvdmoore@dcfreenet.seflin.lib.fl.us           Department of Education


From: "Carlton L. Winbery" <winberyc@linknet.net>
Date: Wed, 22 Nov 1995 11:23:39 -0600
Subject: Re.: Rev. 3:10

A further word on Rev.3:10.
I think it important to interpret the statement KAGW SE THRHSW EK THS WRAS
TOU PEIRASMOU in light of the whole letter.  They have an open door, a
missionary oportunity and they have kept (THREW) his word.  They have
already endured.  Verse 10 has the parallel statements, "You have kept
(THREW) .  .  . and I will keep (THREW).  What they had kept was TON LOGON
THS hUPOMONHS MOU.  This could be translated "you have endured as I
endured."  The word hUPOMONHS is used often to refer to remaining faithful
in the face of opposition Heb. 12, Mk.13. The phrase THS MELLOUSHS ERCESQAI
EPI THAS OIKOUMENAS hOLHS brings the apocalyptic language of late Judaism
that there are basically two ages, the present evil age and the age to
come.  The problem for Christians is that they could not think that the
Messianic age has not already started.  Hence John was a citizen to two
ages.  Endurance (hUPOMONHS) was necessary because of that.  I cannot see
in any way the idea here that the Philippians are promised that in their
missionary opportunity, that they would ever not need to keep the "word of
my endurance."  To make this evidence in any millennial scheme is to
distort it.

Carlton Winbery
Prof. Religion
LA College,
fax (318) 442-4996


From: Bill Mounce <billm@teknia.com>
Date: Wed, 22 Nov 1995 12:37:09 -0700


Bill Mounce

- -------------------------------

Teknia Software, Inc.
1306 W. Bellwood Drive
Spokane, WA  99218-2911

Internet: billm@teknia.com (preferred)
AOL: Mounce
CIS: 71540,2140 (please, only if necessary)

"It may be Greek to you, but it is life to me."


From: Bruce Terry <terry@bible.acu.edu>
Date: Wed, 22 Nov 1995 14:49:55 CST
Subject: Re: TO TELEION / 1 Cor. 13:10 

I apologize for the lateness of this post, but perhaps I can blame the loss
of the b-greek list by majordomo in part.

On Mon, 6 Nov 1995, Byron T. Bezdek wrote:

>To those who a schooled in literature beyond the New Testament:
>    Is there any way to specifically determine what TO TELEION refers to in
>this passage?
>    I come from a minority position/tradition that interpret this as the
>completed scriptures.  There are doctrinal/traditional reasons for being on
>either side of this argument, so attempting to put that aside (I am often
>wrong and may be in this case also),  How far are we really able to go with
>TO TELEION from the texts themselves?

One thing that has not been discussed on this question is the fact that a
neuter singular adjective modified by an article but itself filling a noun
slot in a clause is often used as an abstract noun (see A.T. Robertson's
big grammar, p. 654).  This means that TO TELEION can be correctly
translated "completion," "perfection," or "maturity."  So the NIV correctly

On Mon, 6 Nov 1995, Carl W. Conrad replied:

>I am frankly puzzled by this. While I can see how TO TELEION by itself or
>in a context suggesting a contrast between completed and uncompleted
>scriptures could in fact refer to completed scriptures, what I cannot see
>is how that sense can be derived from the use of the phrase in the context
>in which it appears, wherein nothing (so far as I can see) even suggests

Carl, I believe this understanding comes from two sources:
1) Prophecy is one of the things that are "in part"; the idea that TO TELEION
is the scriptures comes from the concept of their being the result of
completed prophecy.
2) There is a historical dimension to this as well.  For the most part, the
CARISMATA that were obvious miraculous in nature ceased around the end of the
first century or beginning of the second.  Their absence was often noted by
commentators through the centuries.  Then around 1830, Edward Irving, a noted
Presbyterian preacher in London, began preaching that I Cor. 13:10 (When the
perfect comes, the thing in part will be done away) implies that these gifts
should still be in use today since Jesus had not yet come again.  To counter
this argument, some changed their exposition of TO TELEION from perfection at
the second coming to completion when all prophecy was finished.  In a 1976
lecture here at Abilene Christian, Carroll Osburn noted that the earliest that
he had been able to find this revised argument (which both Byron and I grew up
hearing) was in the 1878 commentary by Jamieson, Fausset, and Brown.  I
suppose that was in reaction to Irving's position some 50 years before.

For me, a more crucial question than the meaning of TO TELEION is the
significance of hOTAN in verse 10.  Edward Irving argued that this implied
that TO EK MEROUS "the thing in part" would not cease (except for times of
corruption in the church) *until* TO TELEION should come.  I no longer believe
this follows.  In verse 11, Paul says, hOTE GEGONA ANHR, KATHRGHKA TA TOU
NHPIOU "When I became a man [NRSV adult], I put away the things of the child."
Paul did not retain all his childish speech, thinking, and reasoning until the
age of manhood.  Those things gradually passed away as they were no longer
needed or appropriate.  I see no real difference between hOTE in verse 11 and
hOTAN in verse 10 as regards this; he uses hOTAN in verse 10 because the time
of the coming of TO TELEION was indefinite and hOTE in verse 11 because he
knew when he had become a man.  But neither means "At the time of and not a
whit before" as oft imagined both by Pentecostals and non-Pentecostals alike.

Bruce Terry                            E-MAIL: terry@bible.acu.edu
Box 8426, ACU Station		       Phone:  915/674-3759
Abilene, Texas 79699		       Fax:    915/674-3769


From: Bruce Terry <terry@bible.acu.edu>
Date: Wed, 22 Nov 1995 21:31:42 CST
Subject: Discourse Functions of the Imperfect in Mark 1-8 

The following is from a study of the discourse function of imperfects in the
first eight chapters of the gospel of Mark.  The first eight chapters were
chosen to avoid "peak" areas around the climax (assumed to be the crucifixion)
which might change the discourse functions.  The imperfect of the copula (i.e.,
HN) was excluded from the study since no aorist of the copula is available.

The imperfect was always used in narrative texttype; the only place where an
imperfect occurred in quoted material was in 4:5-8, which was in a narrative
that Jesus told.

Imperfects are used in the first half of Mark in the following five ways:

1) They are used in episodic setting to perform a background function of
   giving descriptive material. (Examples: 1:5, 7, 21, 22; 6:19)

2) They occur in result statements at the end of episodes.  Here they are used
   on a secondary storyline that is thematic in nature.  The theme seems to be
   that Jesus is someone more than a man. (Examples: 1:13, 34, 45; 5:13, 20,
   42; 6:5)

3) They occur in summary sections that are also on a secondary storyline.
   (Examples: 3:11-12; 4:33-34; 6:13, 55-56; 7:36-37; 8:32)

4) They occur on the main storyline to introduce quotations.  There seems to
   be little difference between the aorist EIPEN and the imperfect ELEGEN,
   except that there are three kinds of quotation material where EIPEN is not
   used and ELEGEN is:
   a) EIPEN is not used to introduce passages that could be taken as sayings
      that were repeated more than once. (Examples: 5:28, 30)
   b) EIPEN is not used to break up long quotations into a series of short
      ones, where the same speaker continues on and the imperfect ELEGEN
      seems to serve some sort of refresh operation to remind the reader that
      a quotation is in progress. (Examples: 2:27; 4:9, 11, 21, 24, 26, 30;
      6:4; 7:20)
   c) EIPEN is not used as frequently in *Mark* as ELEGEN in non-peak areas.  In
      the latter half of Mark, as the climax approaches, EIPEN is used more
      frequently. (Mark 1-8: 32 imperfects ELEGEN, 20 aorist EIPEN)

5) Imperfects are used three times in the first half of Mark to indicate
   episodic peak. These are also on the main storyline, although they are
   highlighted as well. (Examples: 5:32; 6:41; 8:6)

This material is excerpted from an unpublished 1990 study at UTA.  It is based
on my own original research.  Permission to use this is freely granted, as long
as appropriate credit is given.

Bruce Terry                            E-MAIL: terry@bible.acu.edu
Box 8426, ACU Station		       Phone:  915/674-3759
Abilene, Texas 79699		       Fax:    915/674-3769


End of b-greek-digest V1 #13


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