From: Carl W. Conrad (
Date: Sat Sep 11 1999 - 06:53:08 EDT

Dear Sir:

I want to thank you very much for your thoughtful comments concerning my
messages to B-Greek on John 19:30. I think that I understand your
perspective on this matter, but I am doubtful that we are going to come to
any agreement about it (although there are a few details on which we might
agree); the reason for this has more to do with some basic assumptions you
make which are quite different from basic assumptions which I make. These
assumptions fall into two categories: (1) assumptions about the dating of
John's gospel: you evidently believe that it was completed in the early
part of the first century, while I believe what I think remains the
scholarly consensus on the question, that it was completed within a decade
of the end of the first century; (2) assumptions about the relationship of
John's gospel to other New Testament texts; my own belief is that John's
gospel expresses a very distinct conception of Jesus' death and
resurrection and giving of the spirit that cannot be brought into any
simple harmony with the conception of Jesus' death and resurrection and
giving of the spirit expressed in the Synoptic Gospels and Acts. To clarify
that, let me say that I do NOT mean that there is a serious theological
discrepancy between what John's gospel tells and what the Synoptic Gospels
and Acts tell, but rather that the harmony must be found on a higher level
of theological equivalence, NOT on the level of chronological detail where
there really is a serious discrepancy, in my view.

Since I do not think we are likely to come to an agreement over these
matters, what I intend to do in my response to you below is to try to
clarify precisely where I hold different opinions from yours, and then I
shall append to the end of the message some off-line correspondence that I
had with Nigel Hanscamp, a gentleman in New Zealand, earlier this year in
May and July; some of this overlaps with what you've read of my on-line
correspondence on B-Greek, but much of it is expanded and clarified. I am
not supposing that you will find it convincing, but I do hope that it may
make my own understanding of these matters a little bit clearer to you.

In what follows therefore, I shall respond briefly to some of your points,
and at the end I'll append that other material.

At 12:22 PM +0200 9/10/99, wrote:
>Good Morning!
>I'm young B-Greekers. I wants to write some thoughts to Your question
>1. You wrote that You tend to hold to Raymond's Brown's view that Gospel
>of John is a community composition of three generations. I think this
>theory is not right. I have not time to discuss this problem but I
>recommend the book from J.A.T. Robinson, The priority of John which
>solve this problem in the right and deep way.

Quite frankly, I have never found Robinson's arguments about the dating of
NT texts very convincing; I continue to hold, with what I believe is the
great majority of NT scholarship, that the gospel belongs to the very last
decade of the first century.

>2.This is not right to draw to much conclusion from the word PAREDWKEN.
>You wrote that what You found in L&N about range of usage is very
>supportive for Your interpretation. I read this and my conclusions are
>a) PARADIDOMI with thing (2P2,21) -to instruct
>b) PARADIDOMI with people-to hand over, to give over and so.I think that
>in this group there exist subgrup which contains such expressions:
>-PAREDWKEN THN YCHEN-Acts 15,26. This last example is similar to the
>previous (to give over life in a metaphorical way).In this statment is
>clear for what but in previous John didn't wrote for whom because it was
>clear. (Look at point 4)

Two points here: (1) I think it is quite common for words in John's gospel
to carry more than one sense at the same time; the most notable example of
this is perhaps the use of ANWQEN GENESQAI in chapter 3, the discussion
between Jesus and Nicodemus; other distinct instances are John's particular
usage of DOXAZW and hUPYOW; (2) I think that PAREDWKEN TO PNEUMA in John
19:30 has these two senses: (a) "die" = Latin REDDERE ANIMAM, and (b)
"transmit," "transfer possession of a thing from one holder to another or
others"--as in those NT instances where Paul talks about a tradition
(PARADOSIS) that he is handing on to others (e.g. 1 Cor 15:3). So I think
that the surface meaning in John 19:30 is "die" but that there's a
secondary sense of "transmit (the spirit)."

>3. We have not example for using PAREDWKEN TO PNEUMA in the sense of die
>are many examples of usage in Lat. Reddere Animam (I C. BC to I C. AC).
>Maybe this is a hint that this expression existed also in Greek
>-Another possibility is to look for hebrew expressions for death or to
>give over spirit for example in Ps.31 (30),6. John was Semite and it is
>maybe semitism. I can't check it.

I agree with you on this point. It could be a Semitism, but we know that
there's a parallel expression in Latin, and I am inclined to think that
Latin idiom has had considerable impact on Koine Greek usage.

>4. Edgar Krenz wrote:"With PARADIDWMI one must ask, to whom? The only
>answer I can come to is to Jesus' mother and the disciple whom he loved,
>i.e. to people at the foot of the cross. I do not see any possibility of
>it being equal to the EXEPNEUSEN elsewhere."
>I will also put this question to whom? But my answer is against
>different: To GOD!
>I see great importence to compere this vers from John 19,30 with
>anothers Synoptics, because it is clear that they wrote about his death
>and not about something else. It is not rigt to lessen (diminish) the
>meaning of Jesus death, because it was also very importent to write
>that Jesus really died and not it was only play.
>The words EXEPHNEUSEN and PARADIDWMI are different but the contet is the
>same : it refers to the death of Jesus.

I don't think you saw all of Edgar Krentz's argument; it's included in the
appended material; Edgar thought the evidence supported me, but I don't
expect this argument about the double meaning of PAREDWKEN to be convincing
to everybody. One factor that I think is in favor of my view is the fact
that there is a parallelism, in the last several chapters of John, between
the mission of Jesus and the mission of the the disciples: "As the Father
has sent me, so I send you ..."

>5. I thinks it is not right to see any connections between Jn.19 and 20.
>In John 19,30 is spoken about Jesus death and in John 20,21-23 about
>symbolical transmission of Holy Spirit. I say symbolical because it
>wasn't really transmission because the disciples get the Holy Spirit
>only during Pentacostels (Acts 2)
>Besides Jesus spoke about sending of Holy Spirit and not about sendings
>(Plural). Compare for example John 14,26; Acts 1,4-5. The coming of
>Holy Spirit this is specific events in our history. From this point of
>time (Acts 2) starts church (his existing).

Quite honestly I think this is an illegitimate way of harmonizing the
different statements of different gospels about the giving of the spirit.
It is quite true that Luke in Acts offers an account of the coming of the
spirit on Pentecost in Jerusalem; it is also true that Matthew in chapter
28 gives an account of Jesus meeting with the disciples and others in
Galilee on an unnamed mountain after his resurrection and commissioning
them and telling them, "I shall be with you always ..." My own belief is
that the commissioning accounts in John 20, Matthew 28, and Acts 2 are
parallel but different formulations of the same tradition--and I don't
think we should attempt to argue for the historical probability of details
of chronology in any one of these accounts over the other by asserting that
one is strictly historical while another is symbolic. I realize that a much
neater, intelligible chronology comes out of Luke's perspective, but the
more important thing to me is what the three accounts (Matthew, Luke in
Acts, and John) have in common: a transmission--from Jesus to believers--of
authority and power and ongoing unbroken relationship with God through
Christ. So I see no need to subordinate the details of John 20 to the
details of Acts 2 or Matthew 28.

There's one additional argument in the material that I am appending below
that you might consider, and that is the pretty clear link between the
Greek words used for the "breathing" of Jesus on the disciples as he says
LABETE TO PNEUMA and the Greek words of the LXX account of God's
"breathing" into the first human being to make him alive.

What follows then below the double-dotted line is earlier correspondence
from this year.
Date: Thu, 27 May 1999 20:09:45 -0400
To: "N & RJ Hanscamp" <>
From: "Carl W. Conrad" <>
Subject: Re: John 19.30

At 9:17 PM +1200 5/25/99, N & RJ Hanscamp wrote:

I have just posted the following to the John_Lit list, but was unsure
whether etiquette allowed me to post it on b_greek as well. If not, do you
have any answers to these questions? I trust you are enjoying your summer
break. We are just experiencing our first frosts - winter is on its way.


Nigel and Rebecca Hanscamp
Trinity Methodist Theological College
Auckland Consortium of Theological Education, New Zealand
Email: <>


Does anyone have any thoughts on the following being any more than Jesus
"breathing his last"? Does anyone know where else this phrase may be used?
(e.g. in wider / classical greek usage)


It is an odd phrase which is not used in the other gospels

I'm sorry I haven't gotten back to you sooner on this one, because I very
definitely have an idea of my own about what's going on, but I'm not sure
that I can explain it quickly. Let me try to set forth the essentials
briefly and then accompany that with two posts of mine from earlier this
year on B-Greek.

(1) Salvation/redemption in John's gospel is a matter of responding
positively to the revelation of the Son of Man, the Word spoken and the
Light shining; the Word spoken and the Light shining are agents of KRISIS,
separating the deaf from the hearing, the blind from the seeing. But the
Word is spoken, the Light shines at the HOUR when Jesus on the crisis
hUYWQH and EDOXASQH. It is the moment of Jesus' death when the revelation
of God's Love is transmitted to humanity; whenever it is received/accepted
by a believer, that believer is raised to Eternal Life. That is highly
condensed: ask questions about it if you want anything clarified.

(2) John's gospel signals the TRANSMISSION and RECEPTION of the Life which
the Son of Man gives through what he says about TO PNEUMA. In 19:30 Jesus
"PAREDWKEN TO PNEUMA," a phrase which may mean, and surely does mean, on
one level, "expired," "breathed his last," "died." PARADIDWMI does have as
one fundamental meaning "surrender" or "yield up." However, PARADIDWMI is
also the verb used for the transmission or handing-over of a heritage or a
tradition, just as PARALAMBANW is used for the receipt or acceptance of a
heritage or tradition (cf. 1 Cor 15:3 PAAREDWKA GAR hUMIN EN PRWTOIS, hO
KAI PARELABON ╔ "For I handed over to you at the very outset that which I
also had received (from others) ╔" To put it succinctly, I believe that
PAREDWKE TO PNEUMA in 19:30 is deliberately echoed in 20:21-23 KAI TOUTO

There is more to be said about this, to be sure: receipt of the Spirit
means not only receipt of Life but also receipt of a mission to carry on,
in company with those given new life along with oneself, the activity of
Jesus, i.e. the revelation of God's love and the actions specifically
attributed to the Spirit in the Farewell Discourses.

(3) Particularly noteworthy in 20:23 is ENEFUSHSEN KAI LEGEI AUTOIS,
'LABETE PNEUMA hAGION ╔" The verb ENEFUSHSEN links up with the creation
narrative in Genesis 2:7 (LXX) where the same verb is used of Yahweh's
breathing the breath of life into the nostrils of Adam. In sum, the Spirit
which Jesus surrenders in death is the very Spirit which he transmits to
believers raised thereby to newness of life.

(4) One other important detail here: Jesus' appearance to the disciples in
John 20:21 is manifestly an appearance of Jesus as the Crucified One: he
shows his wounds, thereby indicating that it is as the one glorified and
raised up on the Cross that the new believers discern that this Jesus is
their KURIOS-and then comes their joy, and then the receipt of the Spirit.
And yet all of these happenings, although described separately and in
sequence, must be understood as simultaneous: discernment of the CruciŮed
One as their Lord, receipt of the Spirit, Life-renewal, Commissioning,
etc., etc. In John's peculiarly collapsed eschatology, quite different from
that of Luke, Good Friday and Easter Sunday and Pentecost are all rolled
into a single event of which we are shown different facets in the Farewell
Discourses, the CruciŮxion Scene, and the Resurrection narratives of
Chapter 20.

That's the "quick and dirty" account. What follows are two posts expanding
on a couple of these key points but originally written in response to
different questions:

C.W. CONRAD POSTS OF 2/13/99 AND 5/8/99
At 9:05 AM +0200 2/13/99, Tom Belt wrote:
>In John 20:22 ENEFUSHSEN usually gets translated "breathed on them"
>("╔after this he breathed on them [the disciples] and said╔"). In his
>commentary on John, D. Carson argues that in the dozen or so uses of the
>verb in the LXX (I could only find three or four) there is always some
>additional word added to convey the idea of "in" or "upon" when that was
>the intended meaning. He argues also that the use of the verb outside the
>NT does not suggest the preposition "in" or "upon" was part of the meaning
>of the verb (but gives no examples). Thus, the verb ENEFUSHSEN by itself
>simply means "he breathed" or perhaps "he exhaled." The picture that
>emerges from John 20 is not that of Jesus going to each disciple and
>"blowing" on them. Notice too that KJV italicizes the object of the verb
>("them"), acknowledging that the original text does not contain the object.
>So what did Christ actually do? Any thoughts?

The LXX of Gen 2:7 confirms what I have always assumed to be a deliberate
literary allusion in John 20:22: KAI EPLASEN hO QEOS TON ANQRWPON COUN APO


It's quite true that the Johannine text does not give us the full
expression of Genesis 2:7, whereby the verb ENEFUSHSEN has its full
complement PNOHN EIS TA PROSWPA AUTWN, but the echo is clear enough for the
interpreter who recognizes the echo to fill it in, if only with a bracketed
"on them." The word *ENEFUSHSEN* by itself is quite enough to achieve the
echo of Gen 2:7 and indicate that this is the moment of the regeneration of
the disciples gathered in the upper room. This is not the appropriate forum
to develop a total interpretation of John 20 in the larger context of
John's gospel, but I certainly do believe that John's conception of
"resurrection now" involves an impact of recognizing that the crucified one
is alive and present as triggering a regeneration in those who recognize
him. Although the time frame for this process is understood differently in
1 Cor 15, nevertheless I think the very same idea is indicated in verses 44
and 45: as Adam is PRWTOS ANQRWPOS, Christ is ESCATOS ANQRWPOS; buried or
"planted" as SWMA YUCIKON, he is raised as SWMA PNEUMATIKON and becomes
(EGENETO EIS) PNEUMA ZWiOPOIOUN. This is the point, I believe, where the
Pauline and the Johannine conceptualization of
resurrection/regeneration/rebirth/life-renewal intersect.


Carl W. Conrad
Department of Classics/Washington University
At 4:10 PM -0700 5/8/99, John Oaklands wrote:
>How is EDWKEN understood in John 5:26? Does this refer to the incarnation
>as of John 1:4 EN AUTWi ZWH HN or, as some have even suggested, to the
>resurrection? How does EDWKEN make sense in hte light of John 1:4? I even
>have trouble with the translation *granted*-does any one else?

There's more than one question here; I'm hoping I can leave aside the
hermeneutical one and concentrate on the grammatical one-it just may
possibly be that the hermeneutical question will fall into place when the
grammatical question is resolved.


My understanding is that ZWHN ECEIN EN hEAUTWi in the consecutive clause is
functioning as an articular infinitive (without the article), i.e. as a
substantive implicitly in the accusative and functioning, as a whole, as
the direct object of EDWKEN.

Now the question is "What does it mean 'to have life within oneself.' While
it COULD mean no more than "to be alive," yet that hardly seems worth
enunciating. Now the context in John 5 is the power of the Son of Man to be
the judge of humanity, and perhaps KRINW here means "condemn." In fact,
consider how 5:27 is parallel to 5:26


I would understand the phrases EXOUSIAN KRISIN POIEIN and ZWHN ECEIN EN
hEAUTWi as parallel to each other and to refer to the two kinds of
authority exercised by the Son of Man: to give new life and to condemn. The
new life comes to those who welcome and give heed to the Son of Man,
alternatively the condemnation comes to those reject the Son of Man and
fail to heed his commandment.

I think that ZWHN ECEIN EN hEAUTWi means "to have the power of making
alive." I don't want to go into a lengthy discourse on the theology of
John's gospel, which does not belong in this forum and would very likely
provoke considerable discussion in its own right; rather I simply call
attention to the passages elsewhere in John that seem to me consistent with
this way of understanding that phrase: Jn 1:10-12 and Jn 20:21-22 where the
risen Christ gives the Spirit to the assembled disciples as described in
the verb ENEFUSHSEN which deliberately echoes, I believe the LXX verb in
Genesis 2:7 describing the giving of life to Adam. Of course here Jesus,
with the gift of the Spirit, is simultaneously bestowing new life upon the
disciples AND empowering them to exercise judgment also (20:23).

To summarize, I don't think that EDWKEN ZWHN ECEIN refers to the
incarnation as such but rather to the power and authority to give new life:
that is a power and authority that the Father possesses and which he
bestowed (EDWKEN) on the Son.

Carl W. Conrad
Department of Classics, Washington University

I wouldn't know to what extent this is original and to what extent I have
borrowed and put together elements derived from different points in my
reading and thinking about John's eschatology and gospel. For whatever it's
worth, there you have it.

Best regards, cwc
Carl W. Conrad
Department of Classics, Washington University
Summer: 1647 Grindstaff Road/Burnsville, NC 28714/
(828) 675-4243
Date: Tue, 6 Jul 1999 07:30:19 -0400
To: "N & RJ Hanscamp" <>
From: "Carl W. Conrad" <>
Subject: Re: John 19.30 (of▀ine)

At 4:15 PM +1200 7/6/99, N & RJ Hanscamp wrote:


I'm back on this subject again. The thought ocurred to me, "is the
expression PAREDWKEN TO PNEUMA a semitism." I cannot Ůnd it anywhere used
of 'death' in Perseus or anywhere else. Is there an online resource, or a
book/s that could help me with this?


Nigel and Rebecca Hanscamp
Trinity Methodist Theological College
Auckland Consortium of Theological Education, New Zealand
Email: <>

I've not been able to Ůnd much. If you are a B-Greek subscriber, as I
assume, then you have access to these items in the archives:

Carl W. Conrad 6/25/99 PAREDWKEN TO PNEUMA: John 19.30
Jim West 6/25/99 Re: PAREDWKEN TO PNEUMA: John 19.30
Carl W. Conrad 6/25/99 Re: PAREDWKEN TO PNEUMA: John 19.30
Mark Goodacre 6/25/99 Re: PAREDWKEN TO PNEUMA: John 19.30
Carl W. Conrad 6/25/99 Re: PAREDWKEN TO PNEUMA: John 19.30
John M. Harkins 6/25/99 Re: PAREDWKEN TO PNEUMA: John 19.30
Carl W. Conrad 6/26/99 Re: PAREDWKEN TO PNEUMA: John 19.30
Edgar Krentz 6/28/99 Re: PAREDWKEN TO PNEUMA: John 19.30

I was particularly heartened to read Edgar Krentz's belated response.

A bit later came:

John M. Harkins 6/29/99 Jn 19:30 KLINAS THN KEFALHN -
Carl W. Conrad 6/29/99 Re: Jn 19:30 KLINAS THN KEFALHN

I have found no indications anywhere that PARADIDWMI is used elsewhere with
PNEUMA of expire; whether it might be a Semitism, I don't know; I suggested
that it might be a Latinism, which still seems to me more likely, but
nobody responded with suggestion of a Semitism. Jim West's response to my
query of 6/25 was rather typical of him-an initial burst of interest and
thought without thinking through the whole usage of PARADIDWMI, which does
include the notion of passing on a heritage to an heir. Since the above
list includes some private correspondence, and I see that applies to Mark
Goodacre's note, let me cite Mark's reply to me in full (I don't think he'd
mind at all, particularly since he's commenting on Orchard's account, but
plese don't cite him without asking for his permission):

From: "Mark Goodacre" <>
Organization: The University of Birmingham
To: "Carl W. Conrad" <>
Date: Fri, 25 Jun 1999 15:21:12 GMT
Subject: (Fwd) [John_Lit] Re: Jn 19.30

Dear Carl

There was a little discussion of this on the revitalised John List a few
weeks ago. I will append my contribution for your interest, as follows:

On 25 May 99 at 21:11, N & RJ Hanscamp wrote:

>Does anyone have any thoughts on the following being any more than Jesus
>"breathing his last"? Does anyone know where else this phrase may be used?
>(e.g. in wider / classical greek usage)
>It is an odd phrase which is not used in the other gospels.

There is a little on this in the book by Helen Orchard mentioned in my
previous Email (pp. 221-3). She cites Sanders and Lindars as giving the
opinion that this indicates the voluntary nature of his death and she
criticises the view:

"Neither the bowing of the head nor the handing over of the spirit can be
interpreted quite so simplistically" (p. 221).

She criticises the way Bauer and Haenchen take KLINAS ("bowing" the head)
and comments on the use of PAREDWKEN as follows:

"That this overwhelmingly negative term is used to describe Jesus' last
action cannot fail to in▀uence our interpretation of the verse. Hanson sees
a possible echor of Isa. 53.12c . . . If there was an allusion to this text
it would certainly imply a negative meaning - surrendering his spirit to
death rather than the Father, as in Luke." (p. 223).

The latter reference is, of course, to Luke 23.46 and Orchard attempts to
show how other commentators have been unduly in▀uenced by this Lukan
parallel in their interpretation of the verse in John (p. 222).

Orchard continues:

"The concept of Jesus *betraying* his spirit is a very difŮcult one, and a
betrayal could be seen to imply that Jesus had failed either in his work or
in death. It begins to make some sense, however, if it is interpreted with
reference to his victimal role. This betrayal is his Ůnal collusion with
darkness . . ." (p. 223).

Hope this is of interest.

Mark Goodacre

The more I look at Orchard's argument here, the more implausible I think
it. I am not keen on the kind of exegesis that simply picks up the common
reference of a word (in this case connection with the "betrayal" by Judas)
and runs with that reference everywhere one Ůnds the given word.

But there are one or two other interesting elements that come up in
Orchard, e.g. she notes that:

"Several commentators flirt with the idea that the phrase means 'hand over
the Spirit (in other words the Holy Spirit) but then reject this on the
basis that John describes the giving of the Holy Spirit in 20.22. In the
end these scholars settle for a meaning along the lines of the Lukan
version, 'into they hands I commend my spirit.'" (p. 222).

The scholars she is referring to are Barrett, p. 554, Sanders, p. 410 &
Lindars p. 582. Bibliography for Orchard is:

_Courting Betrayal: Jesus as Victim in the Gospel of John_, Helen Orchard
(JSNTS 161; Gender, Culture, Theory 5; ShefŮeld: ShefŮeld Academic Press,

Hope this is of some use.

All good wishes

If you want to explore this further, I would suggest that if you haven't
done so yet, you should consult first of all Raymond Brown's Anchor Bible
commentary on John's gospel; it would be in the second volume. I've never
seen anywhere more thorough and painstaking care taken on investigating
Greek words and their implications in a literary work where word-choice is
evidently so deliberate. You ought to look also at Bultmann's commentary,
however guardedly and mindful of Bultmann's own distinctive concerns (one
learns so much from Bultmann even if one doesn't agree with him).

I've told you my views on the matter: I think PARADIDWMI TO PNEUMA can mean
nothing else on the surface in John 19:30 than "expire"-but I don't think
the word would have been chosen if it had only a negative sense; I think it
means "deliver over" -to the next recipient(s)-and I think it also means
that the LIFE that Jesus has had is "delivered over" to all those sheep who
hear him calling them by name and respond to his call and then receive life
and a commission. In sum, I think the links between chapter 19 and chapter
20 of John's gospel are profound.
end of correspondence from earlier 1999

This has been a lengthy message; I hope all of it gets through to you in
Poland intact. I don't really expect that it will convince you that I am
right, but I hope it may at least help you to understand my point of view.

Sincerely and cordially,

Carl W. Conrad
Department of Classics/Washington University
One Brookings Drive/St. Louis, MO, USA 63130/(314) 935-4018
Home: 7222 Colgate Ave./St. Louis, MO 63130/(314) 726-5649

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