Re: Jn 20:16; Did John Goof?

From: John M. Moe (
Date: Sat Apr 11 1998 - 19:48:56 EDT

Paul S. Dixon wrote:



> Excuse me, John, but why is the TDNT "despised?" Is it because so
> many
> spent so much money to get it, then the abridged one volume version
> came
> out and/or so many are now feeling sorry they spent so much money on
> it,
> because they aren't using it very much anymore? Or, is it because
> there
> is something inherently despicable about it? Just wondering. Did I
> miss
> something?

Sorry, perhaps my choice of "despised" was a mistake. It was, perhaps,
a bit tongue in cheek. I was using "despised" in its rather benign sense
as expressed thus in my American Heritage dictionary. "To regard as
unworthy of one's interest or concern." e.g.. Agatha Christy, in
CURTAINS describes a character, (who turns out to be a villain patterned
after Iago) as a nondescript little fellow whom "everyone liked and
despised." Luther - "We should not despise preaching and his word but
hold it sacred, and gladly hear and learn it." Sorry again if my
choice of despised misled.

If I understand correctly, TDNT seems to be considered, (at least to
some extent) "unworthy of one's interest or concern," because of what is
perceived to be too great a reliance on etymology an not enough regard
for context. I may be way off base here, but I have noticed that it is
not regarded highly by scholars and if it's not too far off topic for
B-Greek I, for one, would appreciate some discussion of its weaknesses
and strengths.

> Anyhow, yes, I suppose RABBOUNI could have lost its meaning (but, who
> ever heard of words changing meaning? [ha]), and yes, John could have
> been the first dynamic equivalent translator.


Sorry, I seem to have been misleading again. I didn't mean that
RABBOUNI might have lost its meaning. I just thought that by becoming a
technical term of address the pronominal suffix may have lost its
meaning. Something like ADONAI is, I suppose, what I had in mind.

> Yes, it would be an interesting study to see if the vocative
> was the standard form of address, especially if it was normally
> personalized to such an extent that the personal pronoun was implied.


Yes! The implied "my" is exactly what I was thinking. Wish I'da said
that :-)


Rev. John M. Moe
St. John's Lutheran Church, Rich Valley

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