"Hallowed be your name" as a doxology, not a petition

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jgibson000
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"Hallowed be your name" as a doxology, not a petition

Post by jgibson000 » March 30th, 2016, 4:22 pm

I have been reading an essay Norman Metzler entitled "The Lord's Prayer: Second Thoughts on the First Petition" (in In Authenticating the Words of Jesus, 187-202) in which he takes up and defends a claim made by Johannes Weiss, that the customary view that there are seven petitions in the Matthean Version of the Lord’s Prayer and five in Luke’s is false, since in actuality the phrase " hallowed be your name" at Matt. 6:9//Lk. 11:2 is not petitionary in nature, but a doxology, a honorific qualifier of the Prayer’s opening address.

One of the arguments that Metzler uses in support of his contention is based in the observation that the verb for "may your name be hallowed" (ἁγιασθήτω ) is aorist passive imperative, while the verb for "may your kingdom come" (ελθέτω) is aorist active imperative, and the one for "may your will be done" (γεvηθήτω) is an aorist imperative deponent verb – i.e., one that is passive in form but active in meaning. So this, he argues, along with the observation t that each of the verbs in the other petitions of the Prayer are grammatically active in intent (if not in form), not only indicates that "hallowed be your name" is different in kind from the petitions that follow it, but that "name be hallowed", "kingdom come", and "will be done" should not be construed, as is usually done, as in parallel with each other. :

I'm wondering what should be made of this conclusion. Has it any validity?. Does the fact that ἁγιασθήτω is aorist passive imperative while the verbs in the other petitions of the LP are active in intent really make the name clause diffrent in kind from everything else that appears after it in the LP?

With thanks in advance for any answers to these questions that you may have..

Jeffrey
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Jeffrey B. Gibson
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Stephen Hughes
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Re: "Hallowed be your name" as a doxology, not a petition

Post by Stephen Hughes » March 30th, 2016, 5:51 pm

A lot is made of the concept of voice, but in fact it is pretty easy to understand. Third person imperatives are not so easy. Consider Ephesians 4:26:
ὁ ἥλιος μὴ ἐπιδυέτω ἐπὶ τῷ παροργισμῷ ὑμῶν·
Don't let the sun set on your anger.
Lay aside your anger before the sun sets.
Who is the command to? It is commanded to the readers (listeners), but it is about the sun. What is relationship between those commanded to not let the sun set and the setting sun? They can't stop the sun, so by implication, they must change themselves and not continue their anger. In the verses that you've brought up for discussion, the use of a third person imperative is similar:
ἁγιασθήτω τὸ ὄνομά σου·
Make your name holy.
Let us live holy lives, so that your name will be special.
The word ὄνομα implies that others are speaking about God, the command is being addressed to God by us, because we are addressing the commmand to God we believe that he has the power to do something. The holiness of the name or reputation, is dependent on how others view us, so implicitly it is a request to make us holy, with the gollow on effect of God's name being held in good regard, not just like all the rest. The middle-passive voice implies that there are other (unspecified) people who will be considering God's name holy or not.

If we wanted to translate, "Tell your brother to get his room cleaned up.", using a third person imperative, "Let your brother's room be cleaned." implies that the brother will be told and that he will do it. "Let your brother clean his room.", implies that the mothers words will be conveyed, or that her intentions will be rephrase in a second person imperative "Clean your room." or it could be rearranged as "Don't let your father come home to your brother's messy bedroom.", where the cleaning is implied and the father's coming is taken from context.

The third person imperative make use of unstated relationships between things to get it's meaning across. I don't suppose that it required a lot of thinking for native speakers, but for us, we need to explicate in English what is implied in Greek, to make an accurate translation of the sense, and that requires some thought. Because that involves a degree of interpretation of the circumstances, it can be a little subjective, and in stating openly what was implied, we change the emphasis somewhat.
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(Menander, Γνῶμαι μονόστιχοι 108)

cwconrad
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Re: "Hallowed be your name" as a doxology, not a petition

Post by cwconrad » March 31st, 2016, 8:50 am

jgibson000 wrote:I have been reading an essay Norman Metzler entitled "The Lord's Prayer: Second Thoughts on the First Petition" (in In Authenticating the Words of Jesus, 187-202) in which he takes up and defends a claim made by Johannes Weiss, that the customary view that there are seven petitions in the Matthean Version of the Lord’s Prayer and five in Luke’s is false, since in actuality the phrase " hallowed be your name" at Matt. 6:9//Lk. 11:2 is not petitionary in nature, but a doxology, a honorific qualifier of the Prayer’s opening address.

One of the arguments that Metzler uses in support of his contention is based in the observation that the verb for "may your name be hallowed" (ἁγιασθήτω ) is aorist passive imperative, while the verb for "may your kingdom come" (ελθέτω) is aorist active imperative, and the one for "may your will be done" (γεvηθήτω) is an aorist imperative deponent verb – i.e., one that is passive in form but active in meaning. So this, he argues, along with the observation t that each of the verbs in the other petitions of the Prayer are grammatically active in intent (if not in form), not only indicates that "hallowed be your name" is different in kind from the petitions that follow it, but that "name be hallowed", "kingdom come", and "will be done" should not be construed, as is usually done, as in parallel with each other. :

I'm wondering what should be made of this conclusion. Has it any validity?. Does the fact that ἁγιασθήτω is aorist passive imperative while the verbs in the other petitions of the LP are active in intent really make the name clause diffrent in kind from everything else that appears after it in the LP?

With thanks in advance for any answers to these questions that you may have..

Jeffrey
I'm sorry to see this old claptrap about "an aorist imperative deponent verb – i.e., one that is passive in form but active in meaning". I guess that all depends on one's own idiolect of a metalanguage, but one of my pet peeves is the way we use the word "active" to refer to the semantic value of an intransitive verb.
But there is a significant point here with regard to the -θήτω forms. In Acts 2:38 we read ...βαπτισθήτω ἕκαστος ὑμῶν ... What does that mean and to whom is the command directed? Can it be doubted that it means "Each of you is obliged to get yourself baptized." I'd prefer to call this a middle because it involves effort and volition on the part of the new believer; others may prefer to call it a "permissive passive": the barber cuts your hair, but you have to get yourself to the barber and submit to the shearing.

I think the sequence,
ἁγιασθήτω τὸ ὄνομά σου·
10 ἐλθέτω ἡ βασιλεία σου·
γενηθήτω τὸ θέλημά σου,
ὡς ἐν οὐρανῷ καὶ ἐπὶ γῆς
is a petition for the coming of the Messianic age, for the day when all of humanity sanctifies God's name and carries out His will. It is a prayer for the coming of the Kingdom of Heaven to a renewed creation, a prayer for the νέα κτίσις.
How is God's name hallowed? By taking it seriously rather than "in vain", by obeying His will. How is God's will to come into fulfillment? By the action of humanity in obedience to it.
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οὔτοι ἀπ’ ἀρχῆς πάντα θεοὶ θνητοῖς ὑπέδειξαν,
ἀλλὰ χρόνῳ ζητέοντες ἐφευρίσκουσιν ἄμεινον. (Xenophanes, Fragment 16)

Carl W. Conrad
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Shirley Rollinson
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Re: "Hallowed be your name" as a doxology, not a petition

Post by Shirley Rollinson » March 31st, 2016, 9:31 pm

Stephen Hughes wrote:A lot is made of the concept of voice, but in fact it is pretty easy to understand. Third person imperatives are not so easy. Consider Ephesians 4:26:
ὁ ἥλιος μὴ ἐπιδυέτω ἐπὶ τῷ παροργισμῷ ὑμῶν·
Don't let the sun set on your anger.
Lay aside your anger before the sun sets.
Who is the command to? It is commanded to the readers (listeners), but it is about the sun. What is relationship between those commanded to not let the sun set and the setting sun? They can't stop the sun, so by implication, they must change themselves and not continue their anger. . . . .
But grammatically, the subject of the sentence is ὁ ἥλιος, so a closer translation might be "May the sun not set on your anger." or "The sun must not set on your anger."
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George F Somsel
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Re: "Hallowed be your name" as a doxology, not a petition

Post by George F Somsel » April 1st, 2016, 2:18 am

Earlier today Jeffrey raised a question regarding part of the Kaddish יִתְגַּדַּל וְיִתְקַדַּשׁ שְׁמֵהּ רַבָּא in which יִתְגַּדַּל is a jussive rather than an imperative. Normally this is rendered "May His great name be exalted and sanctified." The jussive seems to be used with regard to 3rd persons or objects (which one cannot actually command). The jussive frequently carries with it a volitative character, i.e., it reflects a wish. This would agree well with Shirley's rendering of
ὁ ἥλιος μὴ ἐπιδυέτω ἐπὶ τῷ παροργισμῷ ὑμῶν·
as
May the sun not set on your anger

It is possible that 3rd impvs in the NT may reflect the Aramaic use of the jussive expressing a wish.
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george
gfsomsel



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learn truth, love truth, speak the truth, hold the truth,
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cwconrad
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Re: "Hallowed be your name" as a doxology, not a petition

Post by cwconrad » April 1st, 2016, 5:15 am

Shirley Rollinson wrote:
Stephen Hughes wrote:A lot is made of the concept of voice, but in fact it is pretty easy to understand. Third person imperatives are not so easy. Consider Ephesians 4:26:
ὁ ἥλιος μὴ ἐπιδυέτω ἐπὶ τῷ παροργισμῷ ὑμῶν·
Don't let the sun set on your anger.
Lay aside your anger before the sun sets.
Who is the command to? It is commanded to the readers (listeners), but it is about the sun. What is relationship between those commanded to not let the sun set and the setting sun? They can't stop the sun, so by implication, they must change themselves and not continue their anger. . . . .
But grammatically, the subject of the sentence is ὁ ἥλιος, so a closer translation might be "May the sun not set on your anger." or "The sun must not set on your anger."
Does anybody seriously believe that this is a commandment directing the sun to do something? Is there any doubt that this is telling the addressee to quench his anger before it is too late? Regardless of the grammatical subject of these imperatives, the urgency to act is enjoined upon the person or persons to whom they are addressed. I would say that, regardless of grammatical subject of a third-person imperative, the clear and unmistakable message of the utterance is that the addressee should simmer down before the end of the present day.
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οὔτοι ἀπ’ ἀρχῆς πάντα θεοὶ θνητοῖς ὑπέδειξαν,
ἀλλὰ χρόνῳ ζητέοντες ἐφευρίσκουσιν ἄμεινον. (Xenophanes, Fragment 16)

Carl W. Conrad
Department of Classics, Washington University (Retired)

George F Somsel
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Re: "Hallowed be your name" as a doxology, not a petition

Post by George F Somsel » April 1st, 2016, 10:05 am

Does anybody seriously believe that this is a commandment directing the sun to do something?
12 On the day when the LORD gave the Amorites over to the Israelites, Joshua spoke to the LORD; and he said in the sight of Israel,
“Sun, stand still at Gibeon,
and Moon, in the valley of Aijalon.”
13 And the sun stood still, and the moon stopped,
until the nation took vengeance on their
The Holy Bible: New Revised Standard Version (Nashville: Thomas Nelson Publishers, 1989), Jos 10:12–13.
:D
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george
gfsomsel



… search for truth, hear truth,
learn truth, love truth, speak the truth, hold the truth,
defend the truth till death.



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Re: "Hallowed be your name" as a doxology, not a petition

Post by Barry Hofstetter » April 2nd, 2016, 6:44 am

George F Somsel wrote:
It is possible that 3rd impvs in the NT may reflect the Aramaic use of the jussive expressing a wish.
Except that 3p impvs are running around all over Greek in authors whom we know knew not a shred of Aramaic nor had any Aramaic influence, so no, probably not.
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N.E. Barry Hofstetter
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Jack M. Barrack Hebrew Academy
καὶ σὺ τὸ σὸν ποιήσεις κἀγὼ τὸ ἐμόν. ἆρον τὸ σὸν καὶ ὕπαγε.

George F Somsel
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Re: "Hallowed be your name" as a doxology, not a petition

Post by George F Somsel » April 2nd, 2016, 8:07 am

Barry Hofstetter wrote:
Except that 3p impvs are running around all over Greek in authors whom we know knew not a shred of Aramaic nor had any Aramaic influence, so no, probably not.
I did qualify that as "in the NT."
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george
gfsomsel



… search for truth, hear truth,
learn truth, love truth, speak the truth, hold the truth,
defend the truth till death.



- Jan Hus

Barry Hofstetter
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Re: "Hallowed be your name" as a doxology, not a petition

Post by Barry Hofstetter » April 3rd, 2016, 7:02 am

George F Somsel wrote:Barry Hofstetter wrote:
Except that 3p impvs are running around all over Greek in authors whom we know knew not a shred of Aramaic nor had any Aramaic influence, so no, probably not.
I did qualify that as "in the NT."
You did indeed, but if the construction is common enough generally in the language, there is no need to look for an "Aramaic" influence. Rather, how it's normally used in Greek is the explanation.
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N.E. Barry Hofstetter
Instructor of Latin
Jack M. Barrack Hebrew Academy
καὶ σὺ τὸ σὸν ποιήσεις κἀγὼ τὸ ἐμόν. ἆρον τὸ σὸν καὶ ὕπαγε.

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