John 8:58 & commentators

From: Ron Henzel (
Date: Thu Aug 22 1996 - 05:35:45 EDT


You wrote:

> I have taken the liberty of deleting quotes from scholars which do not
> address the specific issue of how the Greek 'E)GW\ E)IMI/' in John
> 8:58 relates to the 'E)GW/ EI)MI' in Exodus 3:14 (LXX).

Frankly, I fail to see how these scholars fail to address the
specific issue of how <ego eimi> in John 8:58 relates to the <ego
eimi> in Exodus 3:14. In fact, they address it rather directly by
equating the two. Just in case you forgot what these scholars have
said, I will repeat the quotations:

"The fact that the Jews attempted to stone Jesus after hearing the
words _I am_ shows that it suggested to them the divine name so
translated in the LXX version of Ex. iii.14." -- R.V.G. Tasker,
Tyndale Commentary on John (Downers Grove, IL: IVP, 1960).

Tasker equates Jesus's <ego eimi> with "the divine name so translated
in the LXX version of Ex. iii.14." How much more specific did he
have to be? What would have satisfied you? He says they're the
same. You're upset because he doesn't explain why Jesus dropped the
predicate. I explained it was because the predicate did not exist in
the original Hebrew (at least, that was the summary of the evidence I
presented from the Hebrew). Perhaps I should have simply said: the
Hebrew lacks the LXX's predicate, therefore Jesus didn't use it. I
took the long way to make that point in my previous message, but I
think it was there.

And here's the other scholar I quoted:

"It is not easy to render into Greek the Hebrew underlying passages
like Exod. 3:14. The LXX translators did so with the same form that
we have here." -- Leon Morris, New International Commentary on the
New Testament, _John_ (Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans, 1971), p. 473.

Morris goes to the extent of saying that Jesus used "the same form"
as the LXX translators of Exodus 3:14. You think that you know more
than these scholars do. I guess you have a right to that opinion
(even though your own tag-line indicates you're only "learning
Greek"). I personally disagree.

Sorry you weren't satisfied.

sola (scriptura + gratia + fide) = solus Christus,

-- Ron Henzel

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