From: Steven Craig Miller (email@example.com)
Date: Mon Oct 18 1999 - 17:16:43 EDT
<x-flowed>To: Wieland Willker,
<< Jo 19:25 EISTHKEISAN DE PARA TWi STAURWi TOU IHSOU H MHTHR AUTOU KAI H
ADELFH THS MHTROS AUTOU MARIA H TOU KLWPA KAI MARIA H MAGDALHNH >>
In my last message I noted that it is possible to construe this passage as
two sets of name pairs: the two sister and the two Marys. I would add
another suggestion. If John means to say that Clopas' Mary was the sister
of the mother of Jesus, it would be more natural for him to have written:
KAI MARIA H TOU KLWPA H ADELFH THS MHTROS TOU IHSOU
(instead of: KAI H ADELFH THS MHTROS AUTOU MARIA H TOU KLWPA)
What I mean to suggest is that it would be more natural to say: "Clopas'
Mary, the sister of Jesus' mother" than it would be to say: "the sister of
his mother, Clopas' Mary." Or, to use another example, it would be more
natural to say: "Andrew, Simon Peter's brother" than to say: "Simon Peter's
brother, Andrew" (cf. Jn 1:40).
I've located one counter example, John 1:41 reads:
hEURISKEI hOUTOS PRWTON TON ADELFON TON IDION SIMWNA ...
It is perhaps possible that the normal order is altered here for rhetorical
emphasis: "He first found his very own brother Simon ..."
I'm naturally apprehensive to state my case too strongly, since two
scholars have posted their opinions that Jn 19:25 only refers to three
women. And who am I to disagree? I'm just a simple house-husband whose
vocation in life is taking care of house, wife and children. But I would
suggest that there are perhaps three reasons why one might want to
seriously consider understanding Jn 19:25 as referring to four women:
(a) the reason the KAI is omitted before the first MARIA is because John
lists two sets of pairs: the two sisters and the two Marys;
(b) the normal order is proper name first followed by an articular
substantive of relationship in apposition; and
(c) it would be very unusual to have two sister with the same first name.
On the other hand, I most certainly do not mean to suggest that these three
reasons (nor even the culmination of the three) are decisive.
-Steven Craig Miller
Alton, Illinois (USA)
From Luther's Large Catechism: "Why, do you think, is the world now so
full of unfaithfulness, shame, misery, and murder? It is because everyone
wishes to be his or her own master, be free from all authority, care
nothing for anyone, and do whatever he or she pleases. So God punishes one
knave by means of another" (BoC 386.154).
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