From: Jack Kilmon (
Date: Sun Jun 29 1997 - 13:16:50 EDT

Jeffrey Gibson wrote:

> On Sat, 28 Jun 1997, Jack Kilmon wrote:
> > The question is whether the Greek
> rendering
> > of PEIRASMON refers to our asking the Father to exclude us (the
> > faithful) from
> > that final horrible apocalyptic testing or whether it is a petition
> for
> > everyday
> > tests of"wrongful thinking."
> >
> Jack,
> As you may have gathered if you saw my previous posting on the topic
> you
> have been discussing, the issue in the interpretation of Matt
> 6:13//Luke
> 11:4 is not the meaning of the phrase "lead us not" but of PEIRASMON,
> and,
> even more importantly, of who it is who is "testing" whom. Even
> assuming
> that envisaged here is a "testing" (directly or ultimately initiated)
> by
> God of believers - as parallels to the petition in contemporary Jewish
> Synagogal prayers, T.B.Ber. 60b, and 11 QPs 24.11ff might indicate -,
> there is little evidence to suggest that PEIRASMOS here = a final
> eschatological testing (we should expect to see TON PEIRASMON) and
> LESS that it means "wrongful thinking". There is not a single instance
> in
> Biblical or non Biblical Greek usage of the substantive PEIRASMOS
> where it
> even comes close to this. Rather, it always means "a trial", a
> "test", a
> "prooving", especially through affliction or hardship. Nor do any of
> the
> Hebrew terms for which the LXX translators used PEIRASMOS as their
> Greek
> equivalent ever come close what you suggest the term means. In the LXX
> and
> NT it DOES, however, often render the name of the place where the
> Israelites provoked God and put him to the test to see whether he was
> with
> them or not (cf. Ex 17), or to call to mind that event (Ps 95.) - a
> fact
> which lends credence to the idea I suggested previously that PEIRASMON
> in
> Matt 6:13//Lk 11:4 refers to a "testing" of God by believers.
> On what evidence do you support your claim about the meaning of the
> term?
    I certainly agree, Jeff. I mentioned the "wrongful thinking"
metaphor not asan exegesis of the Greek translation, PEIRASMON, but as a
possible interpretation
of the Aramaic NISYONA which also, according to Lamsa, idiomatically
to opulent living and "worldy" living...something that tempts all of our
minds from
time to time.

    Given the "Enochian apocalyptic/messianic" bent of pre-Hellenic
Judaeism, I accept the "final testing" interpretation of PEIRASMON over
"day to day" interpretation and trust that the Greek of the author of
Matthew and
Luke (whose own translation of the Aramaic idiom indicates he knew
accurately reflects the original Aramaic idiom.

    The transition of the Aramaic idiom to Greek translation is an area
I find very
interesting givem the "cultural gap" between the two languages.

Jack Kilmon

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