Re: ZELEUW in Rev 3:19

From: David Miller (
Date: Thu Oct 16 1997 - 15:29:39 EDT

On 16 Oct 97 at 11:47, Adamsen, Georg wrote about ZELEUW in Rev 3:19:

} Greetings,
} I am having difficulty with the verb ZELEUW in Rev 3:19. The form of
} the verb is very unusual (the usual form being zelow cf. the
} apparatus in NA27). It seems to be attested only in the 5. or 6.
} century and in a v.l. of a Democrit manuscript which is -
} unfortunately - not dated by Liddell-Scott. Bauer-Aland as well as
} Liddell-Scott 9.ed with 1996-supplement take the meaning as 'to be
} zealous for' or something like that.

} The exception is Thomas (Revelation 1-7 p. 305f and 319f) takes it to
} denote the "new habit to be embraced" in opposition to the
} lukewarmness denoting indifference while hotness and coldness denotes
} faith and open hostility and rejection, respectively.
} I think, however, that Thomas has misunderstood the opinion of e.g.
} Rudwick-Green, Wood and Hemer. The hotness and coldness are two
} positive metaphors denoting usefulness, i.e. faith working through
} love and are the opposite of the lukewarmness: the uselessness or -
} with other words - the spiritual death, complacency, self-deceit etc.
Could the choice of ZELEUW be a play on ZESTOS in 3:15-16? In this
case, hot would be conceived of as a positive metaphor linked with
zeal (the opposite of lukewarmness), while cold would probably be a
negative metaphor. ...I know that this goes against the conventional
wisdom on this passage.

David Miller
MA NT student

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