Re: Humpty Dumpty

Date: Fri Mar 20 1998 - 11:36:01 EST

Edgar Foster wrote:
> Chuck Stevens wrote:

> >>Hmmm. I can't but wonder how much semantical baggage "LOGOS" carried up until
> the time John 1 was written!<<
> That is a different question, friend. By the time the Gospel was written, Judaism
> had been fertilized (to use Carl's terms) with Hellenistic ideas. Because of this
> development, many believe that John actually based his concept of the LOGOS along
> Hellenistic-Judaistic lines. Yet, there is no unanimous consensus as regards these
> ideas. For the view that John includes elements of Hellenism in his writings, see
> >>I have always been under the impression that the introductory portion of the Gospel
> of John represents the *establishment* of a new shade of meaning for the word. Is
> there evidence of this "semantical baggage"'s existence (In NT literature or elsewhere)
> prior to the writing of John 1?<<
> John evidently based his idea of the LOGOS upon a previous model of the LOGOS found
> in either Jewish, Grecian, or Hellenistic-Jewish ideas; but John's description of
> the LOGOS also diverges from those Logonic delineations antecedent to the writing
> of the fourth Gospel.
> BAGD says: "It is the distinctive teaching of the Fourth Gospel that this divine
> 'Word' took on human form in a historical person, that is, in Jesus" (478-479).

Fertile thoughts indeed! I, for one, would be stunned were I to learn
that the writer of John did not have an education in Classic Greek
writings that would put our 'leftovers' to shame, including living
Greek teachers who were very familiar with the oral traditions of
those writings as well. Calling the increase of meanings of the word
LOGOS baggage seems a tad harsh ~ Albeit the idea of imagining
Heraclitus coming back to life and having a conversation with the
writer of John does carry a certain warmth. John, "Good to see you!"
Heraclitus, "Thank God! You succeeded!"

George B.

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