Re: John 21 and synonymns

From: Andrew Kulikovsky (
Date: Wed Feb 19 1997 - 03:48:00 EST

Carl W. Conrad wrote:
> At 3:33 AM -0600 2/18/97, Andrew Kulikovsky wrote:
> >Fellow Greeks,
> >
> >I agree that the FILEW and AGAPAW are often used as synonymns and there
> >is nothing inherently different about them. However, I am not convinced
> >(as others have also commented) that they are always used as synonymns,
> >and are stylistic variations. Louw and Nida were mentioned previously,
> >but I would like to cite their article on this matter:
> One little technical item here: apparently you have cut and pasted from the
> article in Louw and Nida and the Greek shows on your screen as Greek even
> in your message text because you have the font in your system. you should
> be aware, however, that it shows up as gobbledygook that is decipherable
> with some difficulty in the messages received by those of us not using your
> system or having that font installed. When citing Louw and Nida I've tried
> to use a conventional transliteration scheme, a tedious process, but it
> makes it a lot easier to read.

Sorry about that. Apologies to the list.

> While I THINK I see what you're asserting, I'm not altogether sure. You
> seem to be asserting that the context is enough to prove that the
> distinction between the two words is real here; that's a view that other
> list members hold also. What I don't understand is why you cited the Louw
> and Nida article unless you're trying to show that it was wrong in stating
> that the words are more or less synonymous here in John 21 and that we have
> a case of rhetorical variation rather than semantic distinction:
> >of meaning between ajgapavwa, ajgavpha and filevwa, filiva (25.33), it
> >does not seem possible to insist upon a contrast of meaning in any and
> >all contexts. For example, the usage in Jn 21.15-17 seems to reflect
> >simply a rhetorical alternation designed to avoid undue repetition.
> Was it your intention to argue against L&N? I think it is perfectly
> legitimate to do so--no reference work has been shown to be
> error-proof!--but it really looks like you are endeavoring to use L&N as an
> authority to make a point that runs counter to it. Have I misunderstood you?

I see I wasn't very careful is presenting my arguement. The answer to
your is yes and no. No I DON'T argue against their point on semantic
differences in *some* contexts but I DO argue against there dismissal of
John 21. They didn't give any reason why the John 21 passage is just
stylistic, only that it avoids undue repitition - but this is the whole
point of the discussion! They also gave no guidelines for determining
which occurrences are stylistic and which are not. As I said, it seems
only the context may possibly decide. Having said this I am not
necessarily committed to seeing a distinction, but I do feel the
evidence is weighted in that direction...

I should have made that clearer in my original post......I have this
communication problem, you know.


| Andrew S. Kulikovsky B.App.Sc(Hons) MACS
| Software Engineer (CelsiusTech Australia)
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