Date: Sun Mar 10 2002 - 21:12:19 EST
In a message dated 3/10/02 7:41:03 PM, Rbsads@aol.com writes:
>(5) HGAPA DE hO IHSOUS THN MARQAN KAI THN ADELFHN AUTHS KAI TOV LAZARON.
>hWS OUN HKOUSEN hOTI ASQENEI, TOTE MEN EMEIVEN EN hW HN TOPWiDUO hHMERAS.
>This is one of those verses which are hard to understand because they present
>Jesus acting in a way that is just not seemly.
>One thing that is not apparent in translation is the use of the imperfect
>tense in verse 5. I am taking the aspect to refer to the continuous time
>during the two days Jesus remained before proceeding to Lazarus.
>Although HGAPA might refer to Jesus loving them for a much longer time,
>seems to me that the verse is inserted in the way of an explanation for
>I had thought the use of DE was to separate paranthetical material, but
>having difficulty understanding the sense of OUN and MEN.
>Could it be that DE and MEN are being used correlatively?
>"Jesus had always loved Martha and her sister and Lazarus; although, when
>then heard that Lazarus was sick, at that time He remained in the place
>was for 2 days."
>Reading DE and MEN correlatively might give the verses a concessive sense
>rather than a sense of consequence that to me at least makes no sense.
>The concession is perhaps explained by the threat in Judea which is described
>in the next verses. For me, reading this use of DE and MEN as correlative
>and concessive expresses a tension between His love for Lazarus and the
>sisters and the threat against Himself and His disciples.
>Anyway, forgetting the interpretation and any potential theological
>possibilities, can the DE and MEN be understood correlatively as I have
>The NIV seems to treat the verses as concessive, the KJV, RV, and Phillips
>seem to treat the 2 day delay as a consequence of Jesus loving Martha,
>sister, and the very ill Lazarus or of the news about the illness. These
>course make no sense. The NEB seems to treat the 2 day delay as a
>consequence of Jesus' desire to give God more glory by waiting for Lazarus
>become more ill.
>Does the grammar support a concessive interpretation, leaving open an
>interpretation that admits the internal tension between visiting and healing
>an ill, beloved friend and avoiding the threat of stoning?
>I see a Jesus who took two days of prayer to seek God's will in this matter.
>And verse 7 and 9 are the conclusions from His prayer.
>Another question is the time frame of the continuous aspect of HGAPA. Is
>focus on Jesus continuing to love them during the 2 day delay, or is the
>focus on Jesus having loved them for a much longer time?
>For me, the continuous aspect of the imperfect tense adds to the tension
First of all when MEN . . . DE are used together, it is in that order. The DE
in verse 1, 2, 4, 5 are correlative, linking the idea in each verse with the
previous, or perhaps rather habitual. The MEN in verse six, if it is jux
taposed with anything it is EPEITA in verse 7. It would then show Jusus'
response to the news as, "then for a while he remained where he was two more
days; then after this he said. . . "
The use of DE and MEN will not let you escape the evident meaning of verse 4
that the illness and death of Lazarus was a set-up so that the Son might be
glorified. You may want to check out Jn. 9:1-5 also. Perhaps this is one
reason Origen referred to John as the "spiritual Gospel." But as you say, we
can't go there can we? Its not John's Greek that is the problem here.
Carlton L. Winbery
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