Re: periphrastics

From: Mark Goodacre (
Date: Fri May 23 1997 - 09:27:51 EDT

'Bearded Bill' wrote (some omitted):

> what would you make of instances in the synoptics, for example,
> where luke has hv didackwv 4,31 while mark has edidacke 1,21?
> couldn't one glean several more of these from the synoptics? don't
> they at least tend toward 'no distinction'?
> granted that special problems can beset synoptic interchangeability,
> the method nonetheless calls in question a great many asserted but
> unsupported fine distinctions.

I find this most interesting and it has got me looking at the
synopsis, my favourite activity. In the example cited (Luke 4.31) it
is interesting not just that Luke has HN DIDASKWN in parallel to
Mark's EDIDASKE but also that Mark goes on with HN DIDASKWN too
(1.22b) - are the two terms being used interchangeably here? (1.22b
also paralleled in Matt. 7.29).

On the general point I would broadly agree that synoptic comparisons
like this can help to clarify things, but I would be a little wary
too. What I would really want to know, and find most interesting, is
how does *Luke* use the periphrastic? Is EDIDASKEN interchangeable
for him with HN DIDASKWN, for example? It looks to me, at first
glance, that it is not interchangeable. HN DIDASKWN (4.31, 5.17,
13.10) seems, with the possible exception of 19.47, to be used for
introducing pericopae - 'Jesus was teaching and then . . .' On the
other hand, EDIDASKEN (4.15, 5.3) seems to be used for summary
statement - 'Jesus was teaching (full stop)'.

On the other hand, the fact that Mark in 1.21f uses *both* EDIDASKEN
and HN DIDASKWN in the same immediate context could suggest

This is a quick observation, not a big theory, so feel free to point
out errors!

Kind wishes,

Mark [P.S. Many thanks for the kind things you (Bearded Bill of
Asheville) said about my contribution on Romans 7.1-6 the other day.
After the discussion with Jim Beale and Andrew Goddard on that I
am left wondering whether I made the mistake of going into too much
detail on something that I think is very straightforward, at the risk
of obscuring a simple exegesis]

Dr Mark Goodacre
Department of Theology
University of Birmingham
Birmingham B15 2TT

Tel.: 0121 414 7512 Email:
Fax.: 0121 414 6866

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