Date: Sun Sep 10 2000 - 12:08:57 EDT
In a message dated 9/9/2000 12:25:43 PM Central Standard Time,
<< What DOES concern the Greek text, however, is your assertion above that
MARTURIAN in the second verse above is to be understood in the modern sense
of "martyrdom": what earthly justification can you offer for that
interpretation? Is there any indication that MARTURIA in the Biblical text
ever means something other than "testimony" or "witness-bearing"? The only
HINT in the GNT of which I'm aware of linkage of the notion of suffering in
order to bear witness is in Acts 9:15-16 where Ananias in Damascus, in the
face of his reluctance to go to the blinded Saul, is told ... hOTI SKEUOS
EKLOGHS ESTIN MOI hOUTOS TOU BASTASAI TO ONOMA MOU ENWPION EQNWN TE KAI
BASILEWN hUIWN TE ISRAHL; EGW GAR hUPODEIXW AUTWi hOSA DEI AUTON hUPER TOU
ONOMATOS MOU PAQEIN. And even here, where suffering to carry the gospel is
clearly in view, the evangelistic work is not called MARTURIA--that is, I
can't see the "modern" sense of MARTURIA that you assert for Rev 1:2.
Under MARTUREW 1, d. BAGD has (also see MARTURIA 3)
d. in eccl. usage w. regard to martyrdom bear witness, testify, be a witness
(unto death) , be martyred: of Paul MARTURHSAS EPI TWN hHGOUMENWN . . . EIS
TON hAGION TOPON EPOREUQH 1 Cl 5:7; cf. vs. 4; MPol 1:1; 19:1; 21f; Epil Mosq
3. Prob. 1 Ti 6:13 also belongs here: XRISTOU IHSOU TOU MARTURHSANTOS EPI
PONTIOU PILATOU THN KALHN hOMOLOGIAN Christ Jesus, who made the good
confession before Pontius Pilate (cf. GBaldensperger, RHPhr 2, ’22, 1-25;
95-117); otherwise the passage may be classed under 1a above.
The usage of MARUTRIA in the sense of martyrdom appears to be for the most
part a late usage. Thus it would seem that your understanding of the
significance of the term would be dependent upon your dating of the writing.
The Apocalypse has generally been considered to be one of the later (if not
the latest) work in the NT. It is only when the Pastorals and some other
works attributed to Paul were designated as being from another hand that the
Apocalypse's postition as the ultimate work of the NT was questioned. For
some reason the traditional dating of this book has survived the recognition
by most that it was not written by the Apostle John. I consider it to have
been written somewhat later than the traditional date therefore I consider
that later usages of the term MARTUR* should be considered.
Consider the usage in the Apocalypse only
1.2 Jesus died.
6.9 TAS YUXAS TWN ESFAGMENWN DIA TON LOGON TOU QEOU KAI DIA THN MARTURIAN hHN
EIXON. Surely these are viewed as dead Christians who had given their life
11.7 KAI hOTAN TELESWSIN THN MARTURIAN AUTWN, TO QHRION TO ANABAINON EK THS
ABUSSU POIHSE MET' AUTWN POLEMON KAI NIKHSEI AUTOUS _KAI APOKTENEI AUTOUS_.
Here MARTURIAN seems to refer to their testimony, but it ultimately
results in the death of the witness.
12.11 KAI AUTOI ENIKHSAN AUTON DIA TO hAIMA TOU ARNIOU
KAI DIA TON LOGON THS MARTURIAS AUTWN
KAI OUK HGAPHSAN THN YUXHN AUTWN AXRI QANATOU.
12.17 KAI WRHISQH hO DRAKWN EPI THi YUNAIKI KAI APHLQEN POIHSAI POLEMON META
. . . EXONTWN THN MARTURIAN IHSOU.
Although those who are witnesses are pictured as alive, it might be
questioned whether it is anticipated that they will suffer death as a result.
15.5 hO NAOS THS SKHNHS TOU MARTURIOU EN TWi OURANWi
An obvious allusion, indeed quotation, from the LXX regarding the
17.6 KAI EIDON THN GUNAIKA MEQUOUSAN EK TOU hAIMATOS TWN hAGIWN KAI EK TOU
hAIMATOS TWN MARTUWN IHSOU.
Would any deny that these are to be called martyrs? The KJV, ASV, RSV,
NRSV all translate this as martyrs. Only the NRSV translates it as witnesses.
19.10 TWN EXONTWN THN MARTURIAN IHSOU . . . hH GAR MARTURIA IHSOU ESTIN TO
PNEUMA THS PROFHTEIAS.
Although it would be difficult to maintain that this MUST refer to a
witness which leads to death, neither can it be authoritatively excluded.
20.4 KAI EIDON QRONOUS KAI EKAQISAN EP' AUTOUS KAI KRIMA EDOQH AUTOIS, KAI
TAS YUXAS TWN PEPELEKISMENWN DIA THN MARTURIAN IHSOU KAI DIA TON LOGON TOU
QEOU KAI hOI TINES OU PROSJUNHSAN TO QHRION OUDE THN EIKONA AUTOU KAI OUK
ELABON TO XARGMA EPI TO METWPON KAI EPI THN XEIRA AUTWN.
Care to wager regarding the life status of those pictured here or how
they achieved that status?
22.15 MARTURW EGW PANTI TWi AKOUONTI TOUS LOGOUS THS PROFHTEIAS TOU BIBLIOU
TOUTOU; [English, not Greek punctuation]
I confess that, if this is "John" speaking, there is no way that this
passage pictures martydom or immanent martyrdom. The only question is "Does
this represent the voice of 'John'?" If it represents Christ, that's another
22.20 LEGEI hO MARTURWN TAUTA; NAI, ERXOMAI TAXU. [English punc.]
This surely is Christ speaking. He is the one who is pictured as the
With few exceptions those who "testify" are pictured as dying as a result of
this testimony. THAT IS MARTYRDOM.
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