Does κόσμος in the NT connect with the OT usage?

Semantic Range, Lexicography, and other approaches to word meaning - in general, or for particular words.
Bill Ross
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Re: Does κόσμος in the NT connect with the OT usage?

Post by Bill Ross » May 16th, 2019, 11:10 am

I have considered some notion of kosmos in the NT having some continuity with the OG if we understand God to be referring to the theocracy as his "jewel" but there doesn't seem to be any evidence of anyone making that connection.

But I found this article that may give me more info:

https://www.jstor.org/stable/43727323
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Jason Hare
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Re: Does κόσμος in the NT connect with the OT usage?

Post by Jason Hare » May 16th, 2019, 11:23 am

Bill Ross wrote:
May 16th, 2019, 11:10 am
I have considered some notion of kosmos in the NT having some continuity with the OG if we understand God to be referring to the theocracy as his "jewel" but there doesn't seem to be any evidence of anyone making that connection.

But I found this article that may give me more info:

https://www.jstor.org/stable/43727323
Just in case someone doesn't have JSTOR access but might have access to articles through another medium:

Marrow, S. (2002). Κόσμος in John. The Catholic Biblical Quarterly, 64(1), 90-102. Retrieved from http://www.jstor.org/stable/43727323
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MAubrey
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Re: Does κόσμος in the NT connect with the OT usage?

Post by MAubrey » May 16th, 2019, 1:59 pm

Jason Hare wrote:
May 16th, 2019, 11:23 am
Just in case someone doesn't have JSTOR access but might have access to articles through another medium:
If you sign up for an individual JSTOR account you can access up to three articles online each month. Not great for doing research, but better than nothing.
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Bill Ross
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Re: Does κόσμος in the NT connect with the OT usage?

Post by Bill Ross » May 16th, 2019, 6:49 pm

The brief article had some very useful insights:

* Wisdom of Solomon features usages in line with the NT

* the Greeks saw the kosmos as beautiful in its orderliness

* the NT's negative usage of kosmos is Jewish, not Greek in origin

* John's usage of kosmos largely parallels his use of "the Jews" and "the scribes and the pharisees". IE: "They" are "lying in the evil one" (even though the apostles themselves and their communities were Jewish) so he clearly doesn't mean all Jews

This then raises the question of whether the "Jews" were the Judeans, not including the diaspora. IE: Specifically the unbelieving temple authorities, the scribes, the pharisees and the Sadducees:

[Luk 13:33 NKJV] (33) "Nevertheless I must journey today, tomorrow, and the day following; for it cannot be that a prophet should perish outside of Jerusalem.

[Mat 23:37 ESV] (37) "O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the city that kills the prophets and stones those who are sent to it! How often would I have gathered your children together as a hen gathers her brood under her wings, and you were not willing!

[Luk 13:34 ESV] (34) O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the city that kills the prophets and stones those who are sent to it! How often would I have gathered your children together as a hen gathers her brood under her wings, and you were not willing!

Certainly the leaders bear the same loathing we see of the world:

[Mat 23:13-15, 23, 25, 27, 29 ASV] (13) But woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! because ye shut the kingdom of heaven against men: for ye enter not in yourselves, neither suffer ye them that are entering in to enter. (14) Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye devour widows' houses, even while for a pretence ye make long prayers: therefore ye shall receive greater condemnation. (15) Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye compass sea and land to make one proselyte; and when he is become so, ye make him twofold more a son of hell than yourselves. ... (23) Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye tithe mint and anise and cummin, and have left undone the weightier matters of the law, justice, and mercy, and faith: but these ye ought to have done, and not to have left the other undone. ... (25) Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye cleanse the outside of the cup and of the platter, but within they are full from extortion and excess. ... (27) Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye are like unto whited sepulchres, which outwardly appear beautiful, but inwardly are full of dead men's bones, and of all uncleanness. ... (29) Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye build the sepulchres of the prophets, and garnish the tombs of the righteous,

So I think the article's observations embolden me in my thinking that John's "other" is not Rome or beyond but specifically the unbelieving theocrats of Jerusalem - the insiders of the "system" or "old order" replaced by the "new creation" in Paul.

Caveat: Not all usages of kosmos are used in that sense. Many just refer to the Jews in general, or to refer to the physical world.
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Bill Ross
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Re: Does κόσμος in the NT connect with the OT usage?

Post by Bill Ross » July 27th, 2020, 1:15 pm

My current understanding of what, for example, John 3:16 has as the referent for KOSMOS is from this OT passage:

Gen 35:11 KJV - And God said unto him, I [am] God Almighty: be fruitful and multiply; a nation and a company of nations shall be of thee, and kings shall come out of thy loins;

IE: Israel was an alliance of tribal nations. KOSMOS has that sense of "array". The word "love" in John 3:16 implies "covenant" rather than a romantic sense.

So God had a covenant type of bond with the alliance of tribal nations that constituted Israel and so gave his son to recover an elect remnant of them (IE: the 144,000).

The connection with Genesis 35:11 makes me feel more warm and fuzzy about his word choice than any other reading I've read to date.
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Jean Putmans
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Re: Does κόσμος in the NT connect with the OT usage?

Post by Jean Putmans » July 28th, 2020, 7:07 am

You might have a look at:
Kittel, Theological Dictionary, that has a 30 page explanation of the meaning and use of κοσμοσ in extra-biblical Greek, OT, LXX, NT and the relations with Hebrew words.

Kittel is my first resource for this kind of word-studies.
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Bill Ross
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Re: Does κόσμος in the NT connect with the OT usage?

Post by Bill Ross » July 28th, 2020, 8:02 am

Thanks, I don't doubt that it would be a profitable study.
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