[b-greek] Re: MORFH

From: Carl W. Conrad (cwconrad@artsci.wustl.edu)
Date: Tue Feb 26 2002 - 22:02:21 EST

At 9:09 PM -0500 2/26/02, Jeff Young wrote:
>A question to Carl first. I was curious as to what you meant by "jarring,"
>in the phrase below? It's no big deal, I just can't figure out whether it
>meant in a positive or negative light. Or perhaps that's an illustration of
>very problem we have here! :-)
>I am not nearly the scholar that many are on the list, but it seems to me
>context is the most reliable source to determine meaning. In that light, the
>phrase MORFH DOULOU would inform our understanding of MORFH QEOU,
>since we have a significant amount of information revealed in the New
>Testament regarding Jesus' as a DOULOU. In that light, the Louw definition
>of "nature or character of something," doesn't seem too far off base, since
>my study of His life indicates that He did take on the essential nature of a
>servant (of course, what do we mean by "essential nature?" :-) ).
>(I could say more, but don't want to press this into a broader theological

I've poured out my own misgivings about this passage time and time again in
earlier threads on the "Christ Hymn" of Phil 2; my thoughts about it are
spread pretty fully in the archives and I'm not going to restate things

As for your question, Jeff, it's probably a philosophic one. I can readily
accept the notion of an "essential nature" of God or an "essential nature"
of a human being or of a dog or a lion, but inasmuch as I don't hold a view
of social hierarchy as being grounded in nature, I find it hard to think of
the MORFH of a DOULOS, whether one understands DOULOS as "servant" or as
"slave." This is not the forum for a discussion of metaphysics or ontology,
so I'll leave it at that.

Carl W. Conrad
Department of Classics, Washington University (Emeritus)
Most months:: 1647 Grindstaff Road/Burnsville, NC 28714/(828) 675-4243
cwconrad@artsci.wustl.edu OR cwconrad@ioa.com
WWW: http://www.artsci.wustl.edu/~cwconrad/

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