Re: Synonyms in John 21

From: James H. Vellenga (
Date: Wed Jun 26 1996 - 08:57:39 EDT

With a little more study of AGAPAW in contexts, I'm now working
with the provisional English equivalent of "to treasure". This
works well in (I think) all the NT contexts, as well as in the
Septuagint passage about Amnon and Tamar that someone quoted.


1) "to treasure" has a slightly different connotation than "to love",
and could be used sensibly in a (very loose) translation of John 21:

   "Do you treasure me more than these?"
   "Man, what do you mean? Don't you know I _love_ you?"

   "Do you treasure me more than these?"
   "I already told you -- I _love_ you!"

   "OK, do you love me?"
   "Look, Master, you do know everything! You _know_ that
    I love you!"

2) "to treasure" is not necessarily "higher" or "lower" than
"to love".

3) "to treasure" can be one-sided, philanthropic, and directed
toward abstract or inanimate objects (such as seats in the
synagogue or greetings in the marketplace) -- but is not
necessarily any of those.


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