Date: Thu Mar 28 2002 - 21:18:37 EST
In a message dated 3/28/2002 8:13:15 PM Eastern Standard Time,
"As through fire" was an idomatic way of saying "just barely",
"by the skin of one's teeth". Paul is not assuring the one who built
poorly (i.e, though you will lose your reward you will still be saved),
warning - though you may attain salvation, it will be by the skin of your
teeth as it were.
You certainly know how to be provocative by your choice of subject title. As
an old Calvinist, I could say something; however, I will 'bite my tongue' and
avoid the theological comments which are not appropriate for this forum.
Liddell & Scott does not tend to confirm this when they cite
Xenophon: DIA PUROS IENAI "(as we say) to go through <i>fire and water</i>
Euripides: DIA PUROS HLQE hETRWi LEKTRWi "she <i>raged furiously</i> against
the other partner of the bed."
BGAD on the other hand does seem to support this interpretation
Of the Christian worker who has built poorly in the congregation it is said
SWQHSETAI hWS DIA PUROS he will be saved as if through (the) fire, i.e. like
a person who must pass through a wall of fire to escape fr. a burning house
Crates: Epistle 6 KAN DIA PUROS
Josephus: Antiquities 17, 264: DIA TOU PUROS
Diodorus Siculus, 1, 57, 7; 8: DIA TOU FLOGOS . . . SWQEIS "from a burning
They also suggest that Ignatius' Epistle to the Romans V.3 be compared
MHQEN ME ZHLWSAI TWN hORATWN KAI AORATWN, hINA IHSOU XRISTOU EPITUXW. PUR
KAI STAUROS QHRIWN TE SUSTASEIS, ANATOMAI, DIAIRESEIS, SKORPISMOI ASTEWN,
SYGKOPH MEWN, ALESMOI hOLOU TOU SWMATOS, KAKAI KOLASEIS TOU DIABOLOU EP' EME
ERXESQWSAN, MONON hINA IHSOU XRISTOU EPITUXW.
May nothing of things seen or unseen envy me my attaining to Jesus Christ.
Let there come on me fire, and cross, and struggles with wild beasts,
cutting, and tearing asunder, rackings of bones, mangling of limbs, crushing
of my whole body, cruel tortures of the devil, may I but attain to Jesus
tr. Kirsopp Lake
also Ignatius to the Smyrnaeans IV.2:
EI GAR TO DOKEIN TAUTA EPRAXQH hUPO TOU KURIOU hHMWN, KAGW TO DOKEIN DEDEMAI.
TI DE KAI hEAUTON EKDOTON DEDWKA TWi QANATWi, PROS PUR, PROS MAXAIRAN, PROS
QHRIA; ALL' EGGUS MAXAIRAS EGGUS QEOU, METACU QHRIWN METACU QEOU; MONON EN
TWi ONOMATI IHSOU XRISTOU EIS TO SUMPAQEIN AUTWi PANTA hPOMENW, AUTOU ME
ENDUNAMOUNTOS TOU TELEIOU ANQRWPOU.
For if it is merely in semblance that these things were done by our Lord I am
also a prisoner in semblance. And why have I given myself up to death, to
fire, to the sword, to wild beasts? Because near the sword is near to God;
with the wild beast is with God; in the name of Jesus Christ alone am I
enduring all things, that I may suffer with him, and the perfect man himself
gives me strength.
tr. Kirsopp Lake
They also cite the Martyrdom of Polycarp which I can't locate at the moment.
I found nothing in Louw & Nida on DIA PUROS
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