From: Carl W. Conrad (email@example.com)
Date: Sun Oct 17 1999 - 08:04:20 EDT
<x-rich>At 6:38 AM -0500 10/17/99, Steven Craig Miller wrote:
<excerpt>To: Carl W. Conrad,
Michael Abernathy wrote: <<<< Paul Dixon said porneia "cannot be
adultery or prostitution, since the lawful punishment for such is death
by stoning." You might want to reconsider this argument. There is
substantial evidence that during the New Testament period divorce, not
stoning, was the usual consequence of adultery (See. Markus Bockmuehl's
article "Matthew 5.32; 19.9 in the Light of Pre-Rabinnic Halakhah"
<italic>New Testament Studies</italic> vol. 35, 1989, pp. 291-295).
Also consider Joseph's planned divorce of Mary upon finding that she
was pregnant. >>
CWC: <<<< Ah ..., but that was because he was a DIKAIOS ANHR! >>
My favorite translation for DIKAIOS is "civilized" (see LSJM); and I
supposed if one translated DIKAIOS ANHR here as "civilized man," and
anachronistically gave Joseph 20th century values, you would have a
point. On the other hand, it would seem almost anti-Semitic to assume
that every "righteous man" would be more lenient than what the Jewish
law requires, while only one less than a "righteous man" would uphold
the Jewish law. Surely you don't mean to suggest that, yes?
IMO, it would be a fallacy to assume that 1st century Torah observant
Jews always followed the letter of their law, when there is evidence
that 1st century Jewish jurisprudence held that one could fulfill the
command to "purge the evil from your midst" (cf. Deut 22:20-21) through
I have asked that participants in the discussion of PORNEIA and the
Matthew text move it off-list.
As for DIKAIOS, the word must be understood in the context of Matthew's
gospel as a recurrent and important theme word to be considered in all
of its applications, as in Jesus' statement to John the Baptist who
didn't want to baptize him, AFES ARTI, hOUTWS GAR PREPON hHMIN PLHRWSAI
PASAN DIKAIOSUNHN and the "hard" saying in the Sermon on the Mount
(5:20): EAN MH PERISSEUSHi hUMWN hH DIKAIOSUNH PLEION TWN GRAMMATEWN
KAI FARISAIWN, OU MH EISELQHTE EIS THN BASILEIAN TWN OURANWN. This
conception of DIKAIOSUNH transcends observance of the law, but it is
clearly no simple matter but something to "hunger and thirst after."
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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