Re: hOTI clause Acts 17:18

From: Maurice A. O'Sullivan (
Date: Tue May 25 1999 - 19:51:00 EDT

At 11:01 25/05/99 -0700, you wrote:
>Who is speaking at the end of Acts 17:18
>I have always assumed that this was a explanatory comment by the
>narrator, not an extension of the complaint leveled by the Athenians:
>After reading of Fitzmyer (AB) and Barrett (ICC) it seems like the hOTI
>clause is being treated as words of the Athenians. This is not stated
>outright, but seems to be implied. I could be misreading Fitzmyer and

I cannot comment on Barrett, since i don't have his translation to hand,
but I think you may have misread Fitzmyer; it seems to me that his use of
quotation marks is to make clear that it is the narrator who is adding his
own comment.:

>>Others commented, "He seems to be lobbying for foreign deities," because
he was preaching about "Jesus" and the "Resurrection"<<

And his note to this verse makes it even clearer, I feel:

>> _because he was preaching about "Jesus" and the "Resurrection"_ It is
not easy to determine the nuance that Luke associates with these words. An
obvious sense is he one that any Christian reader of Acts would understand
(about the resurrection of Christ), but that would scarcely have been the
meaning a pagan Athenian vou]d have comprehended. Perhaps such a person
would have understood the fem. Creek noun 'anastasis' as the name of a
consort for the foreign deity, Jesus, 'Jesus and Anastasis." So John
Chrysostom understood it (Horn. in Acta 38.1; PC 0.267), and many after
him. <<

Haenchen's [ in his ET (Blackwell 1971) ] use of a long dash immediately
between 'deities' and 'because' serves to set it off as a comment coming
from the narrator.
Incidentally, he points out in a note that " D gig. have omitted these
seemingly incomprhensible words"

There is an amusing little pendant to this in Krodel's commentary in the
Augsburg series."
>> called Jesus and the other, his female consort, called
Anastasis. If this were the case, Paul was not even understood. He said one
thing and his audience in the Agora heard something quite different, a
situation not unfamiliar to the modern preacher. >>


Maurice A. O'Sullivan [ Bray, Ireland ]

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