Re: Philadelphia relative to Agape

From: David A Bielby I (
Date: Sun Mar 07 1999 - 17:45:07 EST

Please don't misunderstand me. I'm not proposing love feasts is the
meaning here at all. I'm actually interested to see if anyone would
defend the proposition. I should have made that clear. However, I'm not
sure the concept is excluded, so that's why I asked the question. I
thought it was intriguing and not impossible since the house Churches may
have been having agape every week.

On Sun, 7 Mar 1999 04:12:41 EST writes: (Larry Oberton)
replying to David Bielby
>>> Can this agape be construed to include 'agape feasts' or love
>feast? What
>is the etymology of the word agape and does that correlate here? <<
>Brother, I don't see the idea of brotherly affection at a love feast
>in this
>passage. A secondary definition for the word AGAPH is „love feastš,
>without a contextual reason for doing so, it would be reading into the
>text to
>apply that meaning to this passage. The grammatical construction of
>verse does not support this interpretation.
This 50-word sentence (in
>begins in verse 5, and the action of the passage is found in the verb
>EPICORHGHSATE, which is the second person plural, aorist imperative,

Yes, I'm familiar with this. It was while studying this concept in 1997
that I first came up with the data that helped me see the potential that
Peter was in touch with concepts flowing directly from Greek Culture.
So, it seems that Peter was no longer ignorant or unlearned by the time
he wrote 2 Peter.
>voice of EPICORHGEW, which has the basic meaning of „supply.š The
>here is to add or "supplement" your "faith with virtue, and in virtue,
>knowledge, and in knowledge, self-control, and in self-control,
>patience, and
>in patience, godliness, and in godliness, brotherly affection, and in
>brotherly affection, love.š
>>Also, do you agree that Peter is following the Greek Philosophical
>of demonstrating the way to perfection--showing a sequence or recipe
>ethical perfection? <<
>No, I do not. Remember that the Greek of the New Testament was the
>Greek of
>the marketplace, and not that of philosophical rhetoric or literature.
> Asa
>former businessman, Peter was obviously familiar with the KOINH Greek,
>Greek of common correspondence, of receipts and bills of lading. That
>qualifies him for philosophical argument. And let‚s remember that we
>are told
>outright that Peter (and John) were ANQRWPOI AGRAMMATOI EISIN KAI
>(Acts 4:13). The term AGRAMMATOI appears in the papyri in the sense
>„illiterate,š but here it has the sense of „uneducatedš as
>training. In other words, he was no „seminary student.š Perhaps
>germane to this discussion is the second term IDIWTAI. IDIWTHS means
>personš in ordinary Greek. From the vantage point of a clergyman,
>Peterwas a
>„layman.š Skill with Greek philosophy, therefore, just isn‚t likely.

I don't buy that one. You need to give me more information to convince me
because I don't think skill with Greek philosophy would hinder the
illumination of the Spirit in Peter's life. (Paul used it whenever he
felt led to). Acts 4:13 is perhaps decades before 2 Peter 1 was
Doesn't EPICORHGEW flow directly from the theatrical/drama culture of the
Greeks? Useage of this term in the context Peter uses it, coupled with
his mention of Paul's writings in this letter seems to indicate that
Peter was working on understanding the cultured crowd and had grown to
appreciate them to a degree. I'm not certain about any of this, but my
research so far has led me to this conclusion.
What do you think?

David Bielby I
Pastor Vineyard Christian Fellowship Bloomington, Illinois USA

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