From: Edgar Foster (
Date: Sun Apr 05 1998 - 16:12:45 EDT

Dear B-Greekers,

My thanks to all who responded to my question, however, this comment
hit upon my concern:

---Juan Stam wrote:

> Omnipotent is close, but as I understand it, >PANTOKRATWR
(especially as used
> of the Emperor) also meant "all-ruling", >all-governing, which
doesn't really
> come across in the more abstract "omnipotent"

It seems from my research as well, that Omnipotent does not accurately
convey the thought behind PANTOKRATWR.
PANTOKRATWR seems to delineate an activity or position (ONOMA) whereas
Omnipotent describes an attribute or inherent quality of Being. In
other words, Omnipotens seems to convey the idea that God is
inherently All-Powerful whereas PANTOKRATWR emphasizes His supremacy
over all creation.

Emil Brunner notes: "The Biblical conception means God's power over
the whole universe; but omnipotentia means the abstract idea that "God
can do everything" (Dogmatics, Vol. 1, p. 248). I wonder about this

At any rate, in the context of Rev. 19:8, Babylon the Great is
adversely judged by God and annihilated. KURIOS hO QEOS hO PANTOKRATWR
then begins his REIGN. It seems, therefore, that PANTOKRATWR is best
understood in Revelation 19:6 as God's supremacy over creation.
PANTOKRATWR should therefore be translated "Almighty" or "Ruler of All."

Any more thoughts,

E. Foster

LR College

Get your free address at

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.1.4 : Sat Apr 20 2002 - 15:39:21 EDT