RE: telew

From: Carl W. Conrad (
Date: Tue May 19 1998 - 11:41:03 EDT

At 8:30 AM -0400 5/19/98, Pete Phillips wrote:
>I wonder whether this is all getting a little obtuse. If the word appears
>at the top of a bill we need to question why. TELEW seems to have some
>link with the paying of bills (see Carl's response and Moulton quoted in
>other responses). Therefore because the perfect passive means "it has
>been completed, accomplished, brought to fulfilment" this is not so far
>away from "it is paid".
>So as far as bills are concerned I think I have no problem with the word
>meaning "Paid in full". But Jesus in John's Gospel is not saying "Paid
>in full". Surely he is saying "I've done it - I've accomplished the task
>of revelation for which I came".
>The pastors' problem is in transferring a translation from one context to
>another without retranslating. We move onto a different area of TELEW's
>semantic domain without the pastors acknowledging the shift.
>-----Original Message-----
>From: Jim West []
>Sent: Tuesday, May 19, 1998 12:06 AM
>Subject: telew
>Yup, it is found on receipts. No one loves Moulton more than I! But just
>because a word is found on a receipt does not mean that every time that word
>is used it has reference to a bill being paid.
>For instance, take any english word you like, put it somewhere, and try to
>convince people that every time they see that word, they have to think of
>that item.

I think you've put your finger on the real point here, Pete. One could
readily check the evidence of papyri (most of the Oxyrhyncus papyri are
laundry receipts and the like, aren't they? I know the box full that
Washington U. got was a sundry collection of magical charms, laundry
receipts, and a tiny smattering of literary fragments--this for our pre WW1
$25 contribution to the dig!), but if Moulton says so, why doubt it. The
point that Jim was making originally (whether COGNOSCENDUS or CONOSCENTE)
is right: in John's gospel Jesus' death saves by revelation, not by paying
ransom, and the work that TETELESTAI is essentially a work of revelation.

Carl W. Conrad
Department of Classics, Washington University
Summer: 1647 Grindstaff Road/Burnsville, NC 28714/(828) 675-4243 OR

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