Re: Didache 12:5

From: Ben Crick (
Date: Tue Feb 22 2000 - 14:03:30 EST

On Tue 22 Feb 2000 (23:36:41 +1100), wrote:
> Bart D. Ehrman asked "What do you think of "Christmonger" for
> XRISTEMPOROS? Too unusual? (the Greek too is a neologism) Will people
> get it?"
> Bart's question and the various responses made for interesting reading when
> I looked through my daily digest. As another suggestion, perhaps gloss as
> 'he is merely/dishonestly/fraudulently trading on Christ's name'. But I
> don't think 'Christmonger' would be too unusual or obscure for those of us
> over here in Australia. On the other hand, to my mind the immediate
> resonance is with 'war-monger' which now seems rather cliched, and the
> sound of 'fish-monger' and the like is somewhat archaic (as Maurice
> O'Sullivan noted with regard to "ironmonger"); so I agree with Jeffrey
> Gibson that it may not have as strong a pejorative tone as might be
> desired.

 Dear List,

 The suffix -monger can be pejorative as in "whoremonger", or neutral
 as in "ironmonger" or "fishmonger".

 IMHO Charles H Hoole's translation in the Saint Pachomius Orthodox
 Library text gets it just right:
 "but if he be not willing to do so, he is a trafficker in Christ. From
 such keep aloof" (Didache 12:5).

 Maybe the temptation to back-pack around the world, taking advantage of
 Christians' hospitality to itinerant preachers, was just too great to
 resist for some folks. They they turned the Gospel to their secular
 commercial advantage; "trafficking in Christ".

 "Trafficking" has very pejorative overtones, concerning illegal drugs,

 Just my $0.02


 Revd Ben Crick, BA CF
 232 Canterbury Road, Birchington, Kent, CT7 9TD (UK)

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