Re: Concepts and Words

Date: Sun Jun 28 1998 - 13:38:07 EDT

David L. Moore wrote:
> At 08:57 AM 6/27/98 -0700, Edgar Foster wrote:
> > wrote:
> >
> >
> >>Thanks David.
> >
> >>26:39 does indeed have Jesus prostrate in supplication to hO QEOS,
> >asking for something for himself. An inferior asking His Superior. He
> >is not, apparently, PROSKUNEWing hO QEOS in this action, and if I
> >understand this right, he never does. Men do PROSKUNEW Him, and hO
> >QEOS, but not He hO QEOS. I have no idea where all this leads, but it
> >sure has my attention for the meaning of this term.<
> >
> >> It just feels outrageous to me that Jesus does not once, in the
> >entire GNT, worship His Father. I just don't get it. Jesus Christ
> >does not worship God??? Why??? What relationship between them would
> >preclude
> >worship?<
> >
> >Dear George,
> >
> >I feel that the research conducted in linguistics concerning discourse
> >structure would help out immensely here. The Scholastics commonly
> >signifies [the thing] by means of mediating concepts."
> >
> >The problem I see with this model, however, is that it limits a word's
> >signifying properties via mediating concepts, to only one "thing." In
> >the case of "worship" or "homage," it seems that the action of worship
> >or homage is not limited to "the word" (PROSKUNEW). I.e., many words
> >can be used to communicate one concept.

I'm not sure that an enquiry into the relationship between words,
concepts, thinking and objects is a proper focus of b-Greek. It is
kinda meta-bgreek!!

The usual process in word formation is observation of objects,
thinking about what one sees, [differentiating what it is that one
sees as important], identifying the attributes of that importance
[forming the concept], and then, finally, assigning a word to the
concept. So the word signals a concept, which is a distillation in
some way of one's thinking about what one has experienced of
'objects'. Any object can be observed and thought about in countless
ways, and can thus have countless words that denote it. Likewise, any
word can have countless 'objects' to which it pertains, as long as
those objects exhibit in their observation by the word user the
properties that gave rise to the thought process that derived the
concept that was assigned a word. This is why I regard communication
in words as a miracle of a high order!!

The roots of PROSKUNEW are 'toward' and 'dog', and the meaning of the
term is apparently evolving through GNT times, eh? Yet it is not,
apparently, a term that is ascribed to anything that Jesus did ~ ever
~ at all. We translate it as worship, pay homage to, show respect to,
with the general idea of an inferior in relationship to a superior,
although some feel that it is sometimes used as a simple
acknowledgement of respect between equals. [The dog root would seem to
argue against this, but not necessarily.] It does not seem, as well,
to be an action that a person takes with regard to him/her-self. And
Jesus does not take it with regard to God. And perhaps this is the
point ~ I really have been able to come up with no other. This word
is simply missing from the vocabulary of actions ascribed to Jesus
toward anything or anyone, and I really do not understand why.

The prayer position focus seems to miss the issue of relationship
implied by the roots. Prayer position is a cultural matter. Yet in
John as least, the issue of horizontal and vertical relationship to
God seems very much to be a focus of the difference between
discipleship and apostleship, respectively. John the Baptist's first
appellation is APESTALMENOS , which I first rendered as 'Standing
forth from' alongside of God. So I am wondering my way through these
considerations only to find that Jesus does not 'do' PROSKUNEW!! What
to make of it...? Might could be just a storm in a teacup, and it
might mean something important. I really do not know.

> When I mentioned that the passages (see a Gospel synopsis) on Jesus
> prostrating Himself in prayer to the Father do not include the word
> PROSKUNEW, I did not mean to imply that His action was not an expression of
> - in this case - worshipful supplication. I see no reason - either textual
> or theological - why many of Jesus' actions in relation to the Father which
> we find in the NT should not be categorized as worship.

Me either ~ And that's the difficulty ~ Does it mean worship? And if
it does, why is it so absent from the words ascribed to Jesus?


Lisa Messmer..................ICQ# 5666415
George Blaisdell

Have you seen Dulcie? Look for her Heart!

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