Re: More questions on Mark

From: Larry W. Hurtado (
Date: Wed Sep 27 1995 - 11:58:51 EDT

On Tue, 26 Sep 1995, Bruce Terry wrote:

> On Tue, 26 Sep 1995, Jim McGuire wrote:
> > "ego eimi" is the equivalent Greek phrase to "YHWH" in the Old Testament.
> Apparently you missed the discussion earlier this year in which it was pointed
> out that the LXX of Ex. 3:14 has hO WN used alone of God rather than EGW EIMI.
> First it says EGW EIMI hO WN "I am the Being" and then it says hO WN
> APESTALKEN ME PROS hUMAS "The Being sent me to you." However, this is not the
> equivalent of Yahweh; that in verse 15 is KURIOS.

If "ego eimi" (of Mark 6 and elsewhere in the Gospels) is an allusion to the
Yhwh of the OT, it is *not* to Exod 3, of course, but to Isa. 42-46,
where the absolute form "ego eimi" is a refrain of Yhwh (and cf. the "me
phobou" also in 44:2!!). It is here, in these chaps. of Deutero-Isaiah
of the LXX that we have the Greek expression functioning as a virtual
self-identification formula for Yhwh, and since Deutero-Isaiah is *such*
a major mine of christological material for the Evangelists, it seems
almost certain that readers were expected to catch the allusions. Thus,
the *absolute* form (ego eimi without a predicate adj or noun), I
suggest, may more likely characteristically be intended to allude to the
use of the expression in the "theophanic" oracles of Deut-Isa.

Larry Hurtado, Religion, Univ. of Manitoba

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