[b-greek] Re: KAQEUDW metaph. for Death in LXX & NT

From: c stirling bartholomew (cc.constantine@worldnet.att.net)
Date: Sun Feb 03 2002 - 15:31:00 EST

on 2/3/02 10:52 AM, c stirling bartholomew wrote:

> The expressions:
> both use KAQEUDW as a metaphor for death. The metaphor is made more obvious
> by naming GH as the place of KAQEUDW, because only in trench warfare do
> living men generally sleep in the earth. But this use of GH does not in any
> manner weaken the status of KAQEUDW as a metaphor for death. KAQEUDW is
> describing a STATE, so we have a STATE = STATE metaphor. GH is describing
> the place, not the STATE.

For an example of how a metaphor can be used in both an expanded and an
abbreviated state lets look at KOIMATAI META TWN PATERWN in the LXX (Gen.
19:33 Gen. 19:35 Gen. 47:30 Deut. 31:16 2Sam. 7:12 1Kings 11:43 1Kings
12:24 1Chr. 17:11) . The term KOIMAW certainly has a broad semantic range.
When used with some form of META TWN PATERWN it means death. However it can
be used as a metaphor for death without the prepositional phrase as it is in
Jn. 11:11. Without the qualifying phrase it can lead to confusion as it did
with the disciples in Jn 11. It's metaphor status however is not reduced
when used alone.

The process of moving from an fully spelled out metaphor (e.g., KOIMATAI
META TWN PATERWN) to an abbreviation using only KOIMAW is a well understood
pattern in language development where the single word comes to stand for the
whole expression.

We only have Psa. 87:6 & Dan 12:2 as examples of the full metaphor using
KAQEUDW. However we have several places in the GNT where there appears to be
a confusion over an abbreviated metaphor SLEEP=DEATH. John 11:11 and
context plus Mat. 9:24 (+ parallels).

I am suggesting that the SLEEP=DEATH metaphor was so well established by the
NT era that the exchange of KAQEUDW for KOIMAW would have caused little
confusion in most peoples minds once the SLEEP=DEATH metaphor was already
made an ACTIVE element in the discourse as it is in 1Thes. 4:13-15.

The confusion in 1Thes. 5:10 is caused by the use of KAQEUDW in the same
context with a different sense. But why does this bother anyone? Polysemy
within a close context is a common feature of rhetoric.



Clayton Stirling Bartholomew
Three Tree Point
P.O. Box 255 Seahurst WA 98062

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