Friday, May 27, 2011

Should We Call יהוה "(The) LORD"?


וַיֹּאמֶר עוֹד אֱלֹהִים אֶל־מֹשֶׁה
כֹּה־תֹאמַר אֶל־בְּנֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל
יהוה אֱלֹהֵי אֲבֹתֵיכֶם אֱלֹהֵי אַבְרָהָם אֱלֹהֵי יִצְחָק
וֵאלֹהֵי יַעֲקֹב שְׁלָחַנִי אֲלֵיכֶם
זֶה־שְּׁמִי לְעֹלָם וְזֶה זִכְרִי לְדֹר דֹּר׃

God, furthermore, said to Moses,
"Thus you shall say to the sons of Israel,
'יהוה, the God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac,
and the God of Jacob, has sent me to you.'
This is My name forever, and this is My memorial-name to all generations."
- Exodus 3:15 (NASB 1995)

וַיְדַבֵּר יהוה אֶל־מֹשֶׁה לֵּאמֹר׃
דַּבֵּר אֶל־אַהֲרֹן וְאֶל־בָּנָיו לֵאמֹר
כֹּה תְבָרֲכוּ אֶת־בְּנֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל אָמוֹר לָהֶם׃
יְבָרֶכְךָ יהוה וְיִשְׁמְרֶךָ׃
יָאֵר יהוה פָּנָיו אֵלֶיךָ וִיחֻנֶּךָּ׃
יִשָּׂא יהוה פָּנָיו אֵלֶיךָ וְיָשֵׂם לְךָ שָׁלוֹם׃
וְשָׂמוּ אֶת־שְׁמִי עַל־בְּנֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל וַאֲנִי אֲבָרֲכֵם׃

Then יהוה spoke to Moses, saying,
"Speak to Aaron and to his sons, saying,
'Thus you shall bless the sons of Israel. You shall say to them:
"יהוה bless you, and keep you;
יהוה make His face shine on you, And be gracious to you;
יהוה lift up His countenance on you, And give (שׂים) you peace."'
"So they shall invoke (שׂים) My name on the sons of Israel, and I then will bless them."
- Numbers 6:22-27 (NASB 1995)

יהוה gave His people His name to know Him by, to remember Him by, and for them to be blessed by.

But instead of knowing and calling Him by His name, we often refer to Him by a title or a function: "(The) LORD."

While some people are insistent on using "Yahweh" or some other contrived or derived pronunciation of יהוה for God's name, it seems to me that we already pretty much use the word "God" as God's name.

And I wonder if we ought to be doing it more often.

For it seems to me that our frequent use or overuse of the term/title "(The) LORD" in conversation or prayer is probably mainly because we're so used to seeing and reading "The LORD" for the English translation of יהוה in our Bibles.

But when we say, "(The) LORD," we're not only not saying His name or even His title, but a translation of a title that was substituted for His name.

And that doesn't seem to be what יהוה wants His people to do.



There's also this from VanGemeren, W. (1998). Vol. 4: New International Dictionary of Old Testament Theology & Exegesis (NIDOTTE) (1296–1297). Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan Publishing House:
The “translation” LORD (capitalized in the RSV/NRSV/NIV) is something of a problem, from various perspectives. LORD obscures the fact that Yahweh is a name and not a title or an epithet. The use of LORD is based on the post-OT Jewish practice of reading אֲדֹנָי (Lord) for Yahweh, because of an increased sense of holiness associated with Yahweh, followed by the LXX’s κύριος (#3261). To facilitate this reading, the vowels for the Aram. word meaning “the Name” (which became synonymous with Yahweh in postbiblical Judaism) have been superimposed on the consonants for Yahweh in the Heb. text; or, these are the vowels for אֲדֹנָי, though the initial “a” vowel is not accounted for in this. With the phrase אֲדֹנָי יהוה (305×, Gen 15:2), the vowels of אֱלֹהִים are used with יהוה; in these cases, many translations (e.g., NRSV) use the phrase “Lord GOD” (implicitly recognizing that the meaning of יהוה is not Lord, otherwise the rendering would be “Lord LORD”). In view of this reality, it could be argued that, as with other personal names, we simply transliterate what the original Heb. was thought to be—Yahweh (this pronunciation is only an educated guess, constructed largely from early Christian references).

The transliteration of the present Heb. form, “Jehovah,” does not represent any known ancient pronunciation; such a form did emerge in the Middle Ages, however, and has had a hallowed usage in Christian hymnody (also in the ASV). An alternative would be to follow the NT practice of using “God.” This would also meet the concern of some that the word Lord brings into thousands of texts a masculine metaphor that is not present in the original Heb. (see “Yahweh,” ABD 6:1012).

3. What does the divine name-giving mean for Israel? Two extremes should be avoided. On the one hand, the import of a name is not a mere badge of identity; on the other hand, it does not belong to the sphere of magic, as if by knowing or pronouncing the name one has control over the deity. The oft-cited Gen 32:29, where Jacob’s request for the name of his assailant is not granted, is not pertinent here, for God had already given Jacob his name in 28:13.

Divine name-giving entails several dimensions. It entails distinctiveness; it sets God off from others who have names, incl. gods. Moreover, anyone whose name is known becomes a part of the community that has names; God thereby chooses to join the historical community. Even more, to give the name Yahweh with reference to the God of the fathers ties this God to a certain history. God’s own history is thus integrated with the history of this people, and in this text God makes a commitment to be a part of the history of Israel.

Furthermore, giving the name entails a certain kind of relationship; it opens up the possibility of, indeed admits a desire for, a certain intimacy in relationship. A relationship without a name inevitably means some distance; naming the name is necessary for closeness. Naming makes true communication and encounter possible. Naming entails availability. By giving the name, God becomes accessible. God and people can now meet and address each other. Yet, because name is not person or identity or character (an oft-repeated mistake), there remains an otherness, even a mystery about the one who is named.

Naming also entails vulnerability. In becoming so available to the world, God is to some degree at the disposal of those who can name the name. God’s name may be misused and abused as well as honored. For God to give the name is to open himself up to hurt. Naming entails the likelihood of divine suffering (cf. Exod 3:7). This is probably a factor that undergirds the giving of the commandment regarding the name of God (Exod 20:7). On the above, see T. Fretheim, Exodus, 63–65.
Some background from Alexander, T. D., & Baker, D. W. (2003). Dictionary of the Old Testament: Pentateuch (364–365). Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press.:
When fear of misusing God’s name, Yahweh (cf. Ex 20:7; Deut 5:11), arose at the end of the pre-Christian era, it was replaced by ʾădōnay, which became for all practical purposes a proper noun (cf. Mettinger, 15–19). Some suggest that the actual Masoretic Text (MT) was changed in light of this practice, substituting one for the other (Baudissin, 1.559, 2.81–96; Eichrodt, 1.204), but this does not appear likely, since both ʾădōnay and Yahweh remain in the numerous verses mentioned (cf. Jenni 1997b, 1.28). This phenomenon is evident in the MT, however, where the Tetragrammaton, which should not be pronounced lest it be profaned, is revocalized. Sometimes it is to be read as ʾădōnay, with this word’s vowels appended to the consonants yhwh (i.e., yĕh[ō]wāh, from which we get “Jehovah” through the more archaic English pronunciation of the letters; e.g., Gen 2:4; Yeivin, 58–59). At times it revocalized as yĕh[ō]wih with the vowels from ʾĕlōhîm (e.g., Gen 15:2, 8). This practice of substitution carries over into the Septuagint, where yhwh is routinely rendered by kyrios (“lord”), a practice carried on in the NT (e.g., Mt 4:7, quoting Deut 6:16). This continues in most contemporary English translations (except for the Jerusalem Bible), where yhwh is rendered LORD.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Εγω ειμι ο ων (Exodus 3:14) And יהוה


See my earlier posts on this subject for the background to this post, as well as for the Scripture texts (Hebrew, Greek and Latin):

I raised this question before, and I'm raising it again:

Did the Septuagint's (LXX), and then the Vulgate's, translation of Exodus 3:14, as well as the change from saying God's name (יהוה) to referring to Him by a title ("(the) Lord"), affect the concept of God, distancing Him in the minds of the people and their theologians - a distancing that we may unconsciously still think and experience?

Did the Septuagint's "I Am He Who Is" (more literally "I Am The Being [One]") and the Vulgate's "I Am Who I Am" and "Who Is" move the church away from the covenanting and actively-with-His-people God of the Torah, the Prophets, and the Psalms, and towards an impassible and apophatic "Eternally Existing One," a God who may have more in common with Platonic philosophical concepts than with יהוה, the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, and the Father of Jesus Christ?

My speculation about the philosophical impact of the LXX's translation seems to find support in Toorn, K. v. d., Becking, B., & Horst, P. W. v. d. (1999). Dictionary of Deities and Demons in the Bible DDD (2nd extensively rev. ed.) (913–914). Leiden; Boston; Grand Rapids, Mich.: Brill; Eerdmans:
The interpretation of the theonym as a finite verb is already found in Exod 3:14. In reply to Moses’ question of what he is to say to the Israelites when they ask him which god sent him, God says: “I AM WHO I AM”, and he adds: “Say this to the people of Israel, ‘I AM has sent me to you’”. The explanation here offered is a sophisticated play based on association: the root HWH is understood as a by-form of HYH, ‘to be’ and the prefix of the third person is understood as a secondary objectivation of a first person: yhwh is thus interpreted as ʾhyh, ‘I am’. Since the significance of such a name is elusive, the reconstructed name is itself the subject of a further interpretation in the phrase ʾehyeh ʾăšer ʾehyeh, ‘I am who I am’. Its meaning is debated. Should one understand it as a promise (‘I will certainly be there’) or as an allusion to the incomparability of Yahweh (‘I am who I am’, i.e. without peer)? Even in the revelation of his name, Yahweh does not surrender himself: He cannot be captured by means of either an image or a name. The Greek translation ὁ ὤν (LXX) has philosophical overtones: it is at the basis of a profound speculation on the eternity and immutability of God—both of them ideas originally unconnected with the name Yahweh.
My intuition about the meaning of the Hebrew and how it should probably be translated finds support in VanGemeren, W. (1998). Vol. 4: New International Dictionary of Old Testament Theology & Exegesis (NIDOTTE) (1295–1296). Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan Publishing House:
2. Exod 3:14 is one of the most puzzling verses in the OT. The name given at Moses’ request, אֶהְיֶה אֲשֶׁר אֶהְיֶה, consists of the repeated form of the vb. to be (הָיָה [#2118], earlier form הוי) in the first person sing. plus the relative particle (Yahweh itself may be a third person impf. form; the a vowel suggests a hi. form, but that aspect is not attested in the OT or northwest Sem.). The most common translation is that given in the NIV, “I AM WHO I AM.” Some scholars suggest that this response is a refusal to give the divine name, out of a belief that knowing the name gives some control over the one named: in effect, “I am who I am, and it is not your business to know my name.” This, however, is a counsel of despair and stands at odds with God’s regularly giving a name when appearing to Israel’s ancestors (Gen 35:11; Exod 3:6). Moreover, the fact that Yahweh is immediately used in apposition to the God of your fathers in vv. 15–16 suggests a more positive meaning. It is difficult to believe that the 6800 uses of Yahweh in the OT are only testimony to God’s refusal. There is, of course, a lack of final definition in the name Yahweh. But, as with all names, this is simply to recognize the limits of drawing inferences from the name regarding the nature of the one whose name it is.

Other translations include “I will be what (who) I will be”; “I will cause to be what I will cause to be”; “I will be who I am/I am who I will be.” The last-noted may well be the best option, in essence: “I will be God for you.” The force of the name is not simply that God is or that God is present, but that God will be faithfully God for them in the history that is to follow (see vv. 16–17). The use of the same verbal form in 3:12 and 4:12, 15 (cf. 6:7; 29:45) also suggests this. God will be God with and for this people at all times and places; the formula suggests a divine faithfulness to self. Israel need not be concerned about divine arbitrariness or capriciousness. God can be counted on to be who God is. Israel understands its history from this name and this name from its history. This name will shape Israel’s story, but the story will also give greater texture to the name. This means that there are stakes in this for God; God now has to live up to the name given.
Here again, from my earlier posts, is the verse under discussion (Exodus 3:14):

ויאמר אלהים אל משה אהיה אשר אהיה ויאמר כה תאמר לבני ישראל אהיה שלחני אליכם׃

And God said unto Moses, אהיה אשר אהיה (I will be who/what I will be; I am who/what I am): and he said, Thus shalt thou say unto the children of Israel, אהיה (I will be; I am) hath sent me unto you.

Greek Septuagint:
και ειπεν ο θεος προς Μωυσην Εγω ειμι ο ων (I am the being [one]/I am he who is)· και ειπεν Ουτως ερεις τοις υιοις ισραηλ Ο ων (the being [one]/he who is) απεσταλκεν με προς υμας.

Latin Vulgate:
dixit Deus ad Mosen ego sum qui sum (I am who (I) am) ait sic dices filiis Israhel qui est (who is) misit me ad vos

To see how the Hebrew Bible uses אֶהְיֶה with reference to יהוה, I've listed and marked in blue all the occurrences of the verb אֶהְיֶה (usually translated "I will be"). Verses are marked with an asterisk (*) when אֶהְיֶה does not refer to God. Where the English "I" translates the pronoun אָנֹכִי or אֲנִי, rather than the verb אֶהְיֶה, I do not indicate it with blue.

VerseBHS (Biblia Hebraica Stuttgartensia)NASB 1995 (New American Standard Bible 1995 Update)
Genesis 26:3גּוּר בָּאָרֶץ הַזֹּאת וְאֶהְיֶה עִמְּךָ וַאֲבָרְכֶךָּ כִּי־לְךָ וּלְזַרְעֲךָ אֶתֵּן אֶת־כָּל־הָאֲרָצֹת הָאֵל וַהֲקִמֹתִי אֶת־הַשְּׁבֻעָה אֲשֶׁר נִשְׁבַּעְתִּי לְאַבְרָהָם אָבִיךָ׃“Sojourn in this land and I will be with you and bless you, for to you and to your descendants I will give all these lands, and I will establish the oath which I swore to your father Abraham.
Genesis 31:3וַיֹּאמֶר יהוה אֶל־יַעֲקֹב שׁוּב אֶל־אֶרֶץ אֲבוֹתֶיךָ וּלְמוֹלַדְתֶּךָ וְאֶהְיֶה עִמָּךְ׃Then the LORD said to Jacob, “Return to the land of your fathers and to your relatives, and I will be with you.”
Exodus 3:12וַיֹּאמֶר כִּי־אֶהְיֶה עִמָּךְ וְזֶה־לְּךָ הָאוֹת כִּי אָנֹכִי שְׁלַחְתִּיךָ בְּהוֹצִיאֲךָ אֶת־הָעָם מִמִּצְרַיִם תַּעַבְדוּן אֶת־הָאֱלֹהִים עַל הָהָר הַזֶּה׃And He said, “Certainly I will be with you, and this shall be the sign to you that it is I who have sent you: when you have brought the people out of Egypt, you shall worship God at this mountain.”
Exodus 3:14וַיֹּאמֶר אֱלֹהִים אֶל־מֹשֶׁה אֶהְיֶה אֲשֶׁר אֶהְיֶה וַיֹּאמֶר כֹּה תֹאמַר לִבְנֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל אֶהְיֶה שְׁלָחַנִי אֲלֵיכֶם׃God said to Moses, “I AM WHO I AM”; and He said, “Thus you shall say to the sons of Israel, ‘I AM has sent me to you.’ ”
Exodus 4:12וְעַתָּה לֵךְ וְאָנֹכִי אֶהְיֶה עִם־פִּיךָ וְהוֹרֵיתִיךָ אֲשֶׁר תְּדַבֵּר׃“Now then go, and I, even I, will be with your mouth, and teach you what you are to say.”
Exodus 4:15וְדִבַּרְתָּ אֵלָיו וְשַׂמְתָּ אֶת־הַדְּבָרִים בְּפִיו וְאָנֹכִי אֶהְיֶה עִם־פִּיךָ וְעִם־פִּיהוּ וְהוֹרֵיתִי אֶתְכֶם אֵת אֲשֶׁר תַּעֲשׂוּן׃“You are to speak to him and put the words in his mouth; and I, even I, will be with your mouth and his mouth, and I will teach you what you are to do.
Deuteronomy 31:23וַיְצַו אֶת־יְהוֹשֻׁעַ בִּן־נוּן וַיֹּאמֶר חֲזַק וֶאֱמָץ כִּי אַתָּה תָּבִיא אֶת־בְּנֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל אֶל־הָאָרֶץ אֲשֶׁר־נִשְׁבַּעְתִּי לָהֶם וְאָנֹכִי אֶהְיֶה עִמָּךְ׃Then He commissioned Joshua the son of Nun, and said, “Be strong and courageous, for you shall bring the sons of Israel into the land which I swore to them, and I will be with you.”
Joshua 1:5לֹא־יִתְיַצֵּב אִישׁ לְפָנֶיךָ כֹּל יְמֵי חַיֶּיךָ כַּאֲשֶׁר הָיִיתִי עִם־מֹשֶׁה אֶהְיֶה עִמָּךְ לֹא אַרְפְּךָ וְלֹא אֶעֶזְבֶךָּ׃“No man will be able to stand before you all the days of your life. Just as I have been with Moses, I will be with you; I will not fail you or forsake you.
Joshua 3:7וַיֹּאמֶר יהוה אֶל־יְהוֹשֻׁעַ הַיּוֹם הַזֶּה אָחֵל גַּדֶּלְךָ בְּעֵינֵי כָּל־יִשְׂרָאֵל אֲשֶׁר יֵדְעוּן כִּי כַּאֲשֶׁר הָיִיתִי עִם־מֹשֶׁה אֶהְיֶה עִמָּךְ׃Now the LORD said to Joshua, “This day I will begin to exalt you in the sight of all Israel, that they may know that just as I have been with Moses, I will be with you.
Judges 6:16וַיֹּאמֶר אֵלָיו יהוה כִּי אֶהְיֶה עִמָּךְ וְהִכִּיתָ אֶת־מִדְיָן כְּאִישׁ אֶחָד׃But the LORD said to him, “Surely I will be with you, and you shall defeat Midian as one man.”
* Judges 11:9וַיֹּאמֶר יִפְתָּח אֶל־זִקְנֵי גִלְעָד אִם־מְשִׁיבִים אַתֶּם אוֹתִי לְהִלָּחֵם בִּבְנֵי עַמּוֹן וְנָתַן יהוה אוֹתָם לְפָנָי אָנֹכִי אֶהְיֶה לָכֶם לְרֹאשׁ׃So Jephthah said to the elders of Gilead, “If you take me back to fight against the sons of Ammon and the LORD gives them up to me, will I become your head?”
* Ruth 2:13וַתֹּאמֶר אֶמְצָא־חֵן בְּעֵינֶיךָ אֲדֹנִי כִּי נִחַמְתָּנִי וְכִי דִבַּרְתָּ עַל־לֵב שִׁפְחָתֶךָ וְאָנֹכִי לֹא אֶהְיֶה כְּאַחַת שִׁפְחֹתֶיךָ׃Then she said, “I have found favor in your sight, my lord, for you have comforted me and indeed have spoken kindly to your maidservant, though I am not like one of your maidservants.”
* 1 Samuel 18:18וַיֹּאמֶר דָּוִד אֶל־שָׁאוּל מִי אָנֹכִי וּמִי חַיַּי מִשְׁפַּחַת אָבִי בְּיִשְׂרָאֵל כִּי־אֶהְיֶה חָתָן לַמֶּלֶךְ׃But David said to Saul, “Who am I, and what is my life or my father’s family in Israel, that I should be the king’s son-in-law?”
* 1 Samuel 23:17וַיֹּאמֶר אֵלָיו אַל־תִּירָא כִּי לֹא תִמְצָאֲךָ יַד שָׁאוּל אָבִי וְאַתָּה תִּמְלֹךְ עַל־יִשְׂרָאֵל וְאָנֹכִי אֶהְיֶה־לְּךָ לְמִשְׁנֶה וְגַם־שָׁאוּל אָבִי יֹדֵעַ כֵּן׃Thus he said to him, “Do not be afraid, because the hand of Saul my father will not find you, and you will be king over Israel and I will be next to you; and Saul my father knows that also.”
2 Samuel 7:14אֲנִי אֶהְיֶה־לּוֹ לְאָב וְהוּא יִהְיֶה־לִּי לְבֵן אֲשֶׁר בְּהַעֲוֹתוֹ וְהֹכַחְתִּיו בְּשֵׁבֶט אֲנָשִׁים וּבְנִגְעֵי בְּנֵי אָדָם׃“I will be a father to him and he will be a son to Me; when he commits iniquity, I will correct him with the rod of men and the strokes of the sons of men,
* 2 Samuel 15:34וְאִם־הָעִיר תָּשׁוּב וְאָמַרְתָּ לְאַבְשָׁלוֹם עַבְדְּךָ אֲנִי הַמֶּלֶךְ אֶהְיֶה עֶבֶד אָבִיךָ וַאֲנִי מֵאָז וְעַתָּה וַאֲנִי עַבְדֶּךָ וְהֵפַרְתָּה לִי אֵת עֲצַת אֲחִיתֹפֶל׃“But if you return to the city, and say to Absalom, ‘I will be your servant, O king; as I have been your father’s servant in time past, so I will now be your servant,’ then you can thwart the counsel of Ahithophel for me.
* 2 Samuel 16:18וַיֹּאמֶר חוּשַׁי אֶל־אַבְשָׁלֹם לֹא כִּי אֲשֶׁר בָּחַר יהוה וְהָעָם הַזֶּה וְכָל־אִישׁ יִשְׂרָאֵל לֹא אֶהְיֶה וְאִתּוֹ אֵשֵׁב׃Then Hushai said to Absalom, “No! For whom the LORD, this people, and all the men of Israel have chosen, his I will be, and with him I will remain.
* 2 Samuel 16:19וְהַשֵּׁנִית לְמִי אֲנִי אֶעֱבֹד הֲלוֹא לִפְנֵי בְנוֹ כַּאֲשֶׁר עָבַדְתִּי לִפְנֵי אָבִיךָ כֵּן אֶהְיֶה לְפָנֶיךָ׃“Besides, whom should I serve? Should I not serve in the presence of his son? As I have served in your father’s presence, so I will be in your presence.”
1 Chronicles 17:13אֲנִי אֶהְיֶה־לּוֹ לְאָב וְהוּא יִהְיֶה־לִּי לְבֵן וְחַסְדִּי לֹא־אָסִיר מֵעִמּוֹ כַּאֲשֶׁר הֲסִירוֹתִי מֵאֲשֶׁר הָיָה לְפָנֶיךָ׃“I will be his father and he shall be My son; and I will not take My lovingkindness away from him, as I took it from him who was before you.
1 Chronicles 28:6וַיֹּאמֶר לִי שְׁלֹמֹה בִנְךָ הוּא־יִבְנֶה בֵיתִי וַחֲצֵרוֹתָי כִּי־בָחַרְתִּי בוֹ לִי לְבֵן וַאֲנִי אֶהְיֶה־לּוֹ לְאָב׃“He said to me, ‘Your son Solomon is the one who shall build My house and My courts; for I have chosen him to be a son to Me, and I will be a father to him.
* Job 3:16אוֹ כְנֵפֶל טָמוּן לֹא אֶהְיֶה כְּעֹלְלִים לֹא־רָאוּ אוֹר׃“Or like a miscarriage which is discarded, I would not be, As infants that never saw light.
* Job 10:19כַּאֲשֶׁר לֹא־הָיִיתִי אֶהְיֶה מִבֶּטֶן לַקֶּבֶר אוּבָל׃ I should have been as though I had not been, Carried from womb to tomb.’
* Job 12:4שְׂחֹק לְרֵעֵהוּ אֶהְיֶה קֹרֵא לֶאֱלוֹהַּ וַיַּעֲנֵהוּ שְׂחוֹק צַדִּיק תָּמִים׃I am a joke to my friends, The one who called on God and He answered him; The just and blameless man is a joke.
* Job 17:6וְהִצִּגַנִי לִמְשֹׁל עַמִּים וְתֹפֶת לְפָנִים אֶהְיֶה׃“But He has made me a byword of the people, And I am one at whom men spit.
Psalm 50:21אֵלֶּה עָשִׂיתָ וְהֶחֱרַשְׁתִּי דִּמִּיתָ הֱיוֹת־אֶהְיֶה כָמוֹךָ אוֹכִיחֲךָ וְאֶעֶרְכָה לְעֵינֶיךָ׃“These things you have done and I kept silence; You thought that I was just like you; I will reprove you and state the case in order before your eyes.
* Song of Solomon 1:7הַגִּידָה לִּי שֶׁאָהֲבָה נַפְשִׁי אֵיכָה תִרְעֶה אֵיכָה תַּרְבִּיץ בַּצָּהֳרָיִם שַׁלָּמָה אֶהְיֶה כְּעֹטְיָה עַל עֶדְרֵי חֲבֵרֶיךָ׃“Tell me, O you whom my soul loves, Where do you pasture your flock, Where do you make it lie down at noon? For why should I be like one who veils herself Beside the flocks of your companions?”
* Isaiah 3:7יִשָּׂא בַיּוֹם הַהוּא לֵאמֹר לֹא־אֶהְיֶה חֹבֵשׁ וּבְבֵיתִי אֵין לֶחֶם וְאֵין שִׂמְלָה לֹא תְשִׂימֻנִי קְצִין עָם׃He will protest on that day, saying, “I will not be your healer, For in my house there is neither bread nor cloak; You should not appoint me ruler of the people.”
* Isaiah 47:7וַתֹּאמְרִי לְעוֹלָם אֶהְיֶה גְבָרֶת עַד לֹא־שַׂמְתְּ אֵלֶּה עַל־לִבֵּךְ לֹא זָכַרְתְּ אַחֲרִיתָהּ׃“Yet you said, ‘I will be a queen forever.’ These things you did not consider Nor remember the outcome of them.
Jeremiah 11:4אֲשֶׁר צִוִּיתִי אֶת־אֲבוֹתֵיכֶם בְּיוֹם הוֹצִיאִי־אוֹתָם מֵאֶרֶץ־מִצְרַיִם מִכּוּר הַבַּרְזֶל לֵאמֹר שִׁמְעוּ בְקוֹלִי וַעֲשִׂיתֶם אוֹתָם כְּכֹל אֲשֶׁר־אֲצַוֶּה אֶתְכֶם וִהְיִיתֶם לִי לְעָם וְאָנֹכִי אֶהְיֶה לָכֶם לֵאלֹהִים׃which I commanded your forefathers in the day that I brought them out of the land of Egypt, from the iron furnace, saying, ‘Listen to My voice, and do according to all which I command you; so you shall be My people, and I will be your God,’
Jeremiah 24:7וְנָתַתִּי לָהֶם לֵב לָדַעַת אֹתִי כִּי אֲנִי יהוה וְהָיוּ־לִי לְעָם וְאָנֹכִי אֶהְיֶה לָהֶם לֵאלֹהִים כִּי־יָשֻׁבוּ אֵלַי בְּכָל־לִבָּם׃‘I will give them a heart to know Me, for I am the LORD; and they will be My people, and I will be their God, for they will return to Me with their whole heart.
Jeremiah 30:22וִהְיִיתֶם לִי לְעָם וְאָנֹכִי אֶהְיֶה לָכֶם לֵאלֹהִים׃ ‘You shall be My people, And I will be your God.’ ”
Jeremiah 31:1בָּעֵת הַהִיא נְאֻם־יהוה אֶהְיֶה לֵאלֹהִים לְכֹל מִשְׁפְּחוֹת יִשְׂרָאֵל וְהֵמָּה יִהְיוּ־לִי לְעָם׃“At that time,” declares the LORD, “I will be the God of all the families of Israel, and they shall be My people.”
Jeremiah 32:38וְהָיוּ לִי לְעָם וַאֲנִי אֶהְיֶה לָהֶם לֵאלֹהִים׃ “They shall be My people, and I will be their God;
Ezekiel 11:20לְמַעַן בְּחֻקֹּתַי יֵלֵכוּ וְאֶת־מִשְׁפָּטַי יִשְׁמְרוּ וְעָשׂוּ אֹתָם וְהָיוּ־לִי לְעָם וַאֲנִי אֶהְיֶה לָהֶם לֵאלֹהִים׃that they may walk in My statutes and keep My ordinances and do them. Then they will be My people, and I shall be their God.
Ezekiel 14:11לְמַעַן לֹא־יִתְעוּ עוֹד בֵּית־יִשְׂרָאֵל מֵאַחֲרַי וְלֹא־יִטַּמְּאוּ עוֹד בְּכָל־פִּשְׁעֵיהֶם וְהָיוּ לִי לְעָם וַאֲנִי אֶהְיֶה לָהֶם לֵאלֹהִים נְאֻם אֲדֹנָי יהוה׃in order that the house of Israel may no longer stray from Me and no longer defile themselves with all their transgressions. Thus they will be My people, and I shall be their God,” ’ declares the Lord GOD.”
Ezekiel 34:24וַאֲנִי יהוה אֶהְיֶה לָהֶם לֵאלֹהִים וְעַבְדִּי דָוִד נָשִׂיא בְתוֹכָם אֲנִי יהוה דִּבַּרְתִּי׃“And I, the LORD, will be their God, and My servant David will be prince among them; I the LORD have spoken.
Ezekiel 36:28וִישַׁבְתֶּם בָּאָרֶץ אֲשֶׁר נָתַתִּי לַאֲבֹתֵיכֶם וִהְיִיתֶם לִי לְעָם וְאָנֹכִי אֶהְיֶה לָכֶם לֵאלֹהִים׃“You will live in the land that I gave to your forefathers; so you will be My people, and I will be your God.
Ezekiel 37:23וְלֹא יִטַּמְּאוּ עוֹד בְּגִלּוּלֵיהֶם וּבְשִׁקּוּצֵיהֶם וּבְכֹל פִּשְׁעֵיהֶם וְהוֹשַׁעְתִּי אֹתָם מִכֹּל מוֹשְׁבֹתֵיהֶם אֲשֶׁר חָטְאוּ בָהֶם וְטִהַרְתִּי אוֹתָם וְהָיוּ־לִי לְעָם וַאֲנִי אֶהְיֶה לָהֶם לֵאלֹהִים׃“They will no longer defile themselves with their idols, or with their detestable things, or with any of their transgressions; but I will deliver them from all their dwelling places in which they have sinned, and will cleanse them. And they will be My people, and I will be their God.
Hosea 1:9וַיֹּאמֶר קְרָא שְׁמוֹ לֹא עַמִּי כִּי אַתֶּם לֹא עַמִּי וְאָנֹכִי לֹא־אֶהְיֶה לָכֶם׃And the LORD said, “Name him Lo-ammi, for you are not My people and I am not your God.”
Hosea 14:6אֶהְיֶה כַטַּל לְיִשְׂרָאֵל יִפְרַח כַּשּׁוֹשַׁנָּה וְיַךְ שָׁרָשָׁיו כַּלְּבָנוֹן׃NASB Hosea 14:5 I will be like the dew to Israel; He will blossom like the lily, And he will take root like the cedars of Lebanon.
Zechariah 2:9וַאֲנִי אֶהְיֶה־לָּהּ נְאֻם־יהוה חוֹמַת אֵשׁ סָבִיב וּלְכָבוֹד אֶהְיֶה בְתוֹכָהּ׃NASB Zechariah 2:5 ‘For I,’ declares the LORD, ‘will be a wall of fire around her, and I will be the glory in her midst.’ ”
Zechariah 8:8וְהֵבֵאתִי אֹתָם וְשָׁכְנוּ בְּתוֹךְ יְרוּשָׁלָםִ וְהָיוּ־לִי לְעָם וַאֲנִי אֶהְיֶה לָהֶם לֵאלֹהִים בֶּאֱמֶת וּבִצְדָקָה׃and I will bring them back and they will live in the midst of Jerusalem; and they shall be My people, and I will be their God in truth and righteousness.’

Saturday, May 21, 2011

St. Peter On Why There Was No Judgment Day May 21, 2011, And Why Jesus May Not Be Returning Anytime Soon





Since everything will be destroyed in this way, what kind of people ought you to be? You ought to live holy and godly lives as you look forward to the day of God and speed its coming. (2 Peter 3:11-12a, NIV 2011)


A synopsis of 2 Peter:

Peter, expecting his imminent death and wanting to give his fellow Christians some parting words, exhorts his readers to be diligent in their faith so as to make sure their being called and chosen by God for His Kingdom.

He confirms his words by his authority and experience.

He warns them that false teachers will bring in destructive teachings, and will lead many to leave the truth to follow after their sensuality. Others will come and mock the promise of the Lord’s return and the destruction of the present order.

But God’s promise is sure, he says, and if God seems to be slow to bring about the end of the present age, it’s because He wants them to repent and not perish.

They should continue their efforts to live godly lives, pursuing these things with diligence so they may be found blameless by the Lord when He comes. If He delays, it’s for the benefit of their salvation.

Peter concludes with
Therefore, dear friends, since you have been forewarned, be on your guard so that you may not be carried away by the error of the lawless and fall from your secure position. But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. (NIV 2011)
thus ending his Epistle with an exhortation to do what he told them to do at the beginning.



Many may be looking forward to, and even striving to hasten, the day of the Lord.

But God may be more interested in seeing His people increase in Christlikeness than in wrapping things up while many of them still have a long way to grow before they can live in the new heavens and new earth where righteousness dwells.

I.e., He may not be ready until we're ready.*

If so, I suspect we probably shouldn't expect Jesus' return for a long, long time.

* I know this creates some tension with the teaching elsewhere in Scripture, primarily by Paul, that we who believe in Christ have been clothed with His righteousness and will stand before God based on that, and not based on what we've done or been. But it's possible that a demeaning or dismissing of our efforts towards personal holiness may be what Peter is referring to in 3:15b-16 when he says that some destructively distort Paul's teachings.



ΠΕΤΡΟΥ Β


1.1 Συμεὼν Πέτρος δοῦλος καὶ ἀπόστολος Ἰησοῦ Χριστοῦ τοῖς ἰσότιμον ἡμῖν λαχοῦσιν πίστιν ἐν δικαιοσύνῃ τοῦ θεοῦ ἡμῶν καὶ σωτῆρος Ἰησοῦ Χριστοῦ· 2 χάρις ὑμῖν καὶ εἰρήνη πληθυνθείη ἐν ἐπιγνώσει τοῦ θεοῦ καὶ Ἰησοῦ τοῦ κυρίου ἡμῶν.

3 Ὡς πάντα ἡμῖν τῆς θείας δυνάμεως αὐτοῦ τὰ πρὸς ζωὴν καὶ εὐσέβειαν δεδωρημένης διὰ τῆς ἐπιγνώσεως τοῦ καλέσαντος ἡμᾶς ἰδίᾳ δόξῃ καὶ ἀρετῇ, 4 διʼ ὧν τὰ τίμια καὶ μέγιστα ἡμῖν ἐπαγγέλματα δεδώρηται, ἵνα διὰ τούτων γένησθε θείας κοινωνοὶ φύσεως, ἀποφυγόντες τῆς ἐν τῷ κόσμῳ ἐν ἐπιθυμίᾳ φθορᾶς. 5 καὶ αὐτὸ τοῦτο δὲ σπουδὴν πᾶσαν παρεισενέγκαντες ἐπιχορηγήσατε ἐν τῇ πίστει ὑμῶν τὴν ἀρετήν, ἐν δὲ τῇ ἀρετῇ τὴν γνῶσιν, 6 ἐν δὲ τῇ γνώσει τὴν ἐγκράτειαν, ἐν δὲ τῇ ἐγκρατείᾳ τὴν ὑπομονήν, ἐν δὲ τῇ ὑπομονῇ τὴν εὐσέβειαν, 7 ἐν δὲ τῇ εὐσεβείᾳ τὴν φιλαδελφίαν, ἐν δὲ τῇ φιλαδελφίᾳ τὴν ἀγάπην· 8 ταῦτα γὰρ ὑμῖν ὑπάρχοντα καὶ πλεονάζοντα οὐκ ἀργοὺς οὐδὲ ἀκάρπους καθίστησιν εἰς τὴν τοῦ κυρίου ἡμῶν Ἰησοῦ Χριστοῦ ἐπίγνωσιν· 9 ᾧ γὰρ μὴ πάρεστιν ταῦτα, τυφλός ἐστιν μυωπάζων, λήθην λαβὼν τοῦ καθαρισμοῦ τῶν πάλαι αὐτοῦ ἁμαρτημάτων. 10 διὸ μᾶλλον, ἀδελφοί, σπουδάσατε βεβαίαν ὑμῶν τὴν κλῆσιν καὶ ἐκλογὴν ποιεῖσθαι· ταῦτα γὰρ ποιοῦντες οὐ μὴ πταίσητέ ποτε· 11 οὕτως γὰρ πλουσίως ἐπιχορηγηθήσεται ὑμῖν ἡ εἴσοδος εἰς τὴν αἰώνιον βασιλείαν τοῦ κυρίου ἡμῶν καὶ σωτῆρος Ἰησοῦ Χριστοῦ.

12 Διὸ μελλήσω ἀεὶ ὑμᾶς ὑπομιμνῄσκειν περὶ τούτων, καίπερ εἰδότας καὶ ἐστηριγμένους ἐν τῇ παρούσῃ ἀληθείᾳ. 13 δίκαιον δὲ ἡγοῦμαι, ἐφʼ ὅσον εἰμὶ ἐν τούτῳ τῷ σκηνώματι, διεγείρειν ὑμᾶς ἐν ὑπομνήσει, 14 εἰδὼς ὅτι ταχινή ἐστιν ἡ ἀπόθεσις τοῦ σκηνώματός μου, καθὼς καὶ ὁ κύριος ἡμῶν Ἰησοῦς Χριστὸς ἐδήλωσέν μοι· 15 σπουδάσω δὲ καὶ ἑκάστοτε ἔχειν ὑμᾶς μετὰ τὴν ἐμὴν ἔξοδον τὴν τούτων μνήμην ποιεῖσθαι.

16 Οὐ γὰρ σεσοφισμένοις μύθοις ἐξακολουθήσαντες ἐγνωρίσαμεν ὑμῖν τὴν τοῦ κυρίου ἡμῶν Ἰησοῦ Χριστοῦ δύναμιν καὶ παρουσίαν, ἀλλʼ ἐπόπται γενηθέντες τῆς ἐκείνου μεγαλειότητος. 17 λαβὼν γὰρ παρὰ θεοῦ πατρὸς τιμὴν καὶ δόξαν φωνῆς ἐνεχθείσης αὐτῷ τοιᾶσδε ὑπὸ τῆς μεγαλοπρεποῦς δόξης· Ὁ υἱός μου ὁ ἀγαπητός μου οὗτός ἐστιν, εἰς ὃν ἐγὼ εὐδόκησα— 18 καὶ ταύτην τὴν φωνὴν ἡμεῖς ἠκούσαμεν ἐξ οὐρανοῦ ἐνεχθεῖσαν σὺν αὐτῷ ὄντες ἐν τῷ ἁγίῳ ὄρει. 19 καὶ ἔχομεν βεβαιότερον τὸν προφητικὸν λόγον, ᾧ καλῶς ποιεῖτε προσέχοντες ὡς λύχνῳ φαίνοντι ἐν αὐχμηρῷ τόπῳ, ἕως οὗ ἡμέρα διαυγάσῃ καὶ φωσφόρος ἀνατείλῃ ἐν ταῖς καρδίαις ὑμῶν· 20 τοῦτο πρῶτον γινώσκοντες ὅτι πᾶσα προφητεία γραφῆς ἰδίας ἐπιλύσεως οὐ γίνεται, 21 οὐ γὰρ θελήματι ἀνθρώπου ἠνέχθη προφητεία ποτέ, ἀλλὰ ὑπὸ πνεύματος ἁγίου φερόμενοι ἐλάλησαν ἀπὸ θεοῦ ἄνθρωποι.

2.1 Ἐγένοντο δὲ καὶ ψευδοπροφῆται ἐν τῷ λαῷ, ὡς καὶ ἐν ὑμῖν ἔσονται ψευδοδιδάσκαλοι, οἵτινες παρεισάξουσιν αἱρέσεις ἀπωλείας, καὶ τὸν ἀγοράσαντα αὐτοὺς δεσπότην ἀρνούμενοι, ἐπάγοντες ἑαυτοῖς ταχινὴν ἀπώλειαν· 2 καὶ πολλοὶ ἐξακολουθήσουσιν αὐτῶν ταῖς ἀσελγείαις, διʼ οὓς ἡ ὁδὸς τῆς ἀληθείας βλασφημηθήσεται· 3 καὶ ἐν πλεονεξίᾳ πλαστοῖς λόγοις ὑμᾶς ἐμπορεύσονται· οἷς τὸ κρίμα ἔκπαλαι οὐκ ἀργεῖ, καὶ ἡ ἀπώλεια αὐτῶν οὐ νυστάζει.

4 Εἰ γὰρ ὁ θεὸς ἀγγέλων ἁμαρτησάντων οὐκ ἐφείσατο, ἀλλὰ σειραῖς ζόφου ταρταρώσας παρέδωκεν εἰς κρίσιν τηρουμένους, 5 καὶ ἀρχαίου κόσμου οὐκ ἐφείσατο, ἀλλὰ ὄγδοον Νῶε δικαιοσύνης κήρυκα ἐφύλαξεν, κατακλυσμὸν κόσμῳ ἀσεβῶν ἐπάξας, 6 καὶ πόλεις Σοδόμων καὶ Γομόρρας τεφρώσας καταστροφῇ κατέκρινεν, ὑπόδειγμα μελλόντων ἀσεβέσιν τεθεικώς, 7 καὶ δίκαιον Λὼτ καταπονούμενον ὑπὸ τῆς τῶν ἀθέσμων ἐν ἀσελγείᾳ ἀναστροφῆς ἐρρύσατο— 8 βλέμματι γὰρ καὶ ἀκοῇ ὁ δίκαιος ἐγκατοικῶν ἐν αὐτοῖς ἡμέραν ἐξ ἡμέρας ψυχὴν δικαίαν ἀνόμοις ἔργοις ἐβασάνιζεν— 9 οἶδεν κύριος εὐσεβεῖς ἐκ πειρασμοῦ ῥύεσθαι, ἀδίκους δὲ εἰς ἡμέραν κρίσεως κολαζομένους τηρεῖν, 10 μάλιστα δὲ τοὺς ὀπίσω σαρκὸς ἐν ἐπιθυμίᾳ μιασμοῦ πορευομένους καὶ κυριότητος καταφρονοῦντας.

Τολμηταὶ, αὐθάδεις, δόξας οὐ τρέμουσιν, βλασφημοῦντες, 11 ὅπου ἄγγελοι ἰσχύϊ καὶ δυνάμει μείζονες ὄντες οὐ φέρουσιν κατʼ αὐτῶν βλάσφημον κρίσιν. 12 οὗτοι δέ, ὡς ἄλογα ζῷα γεγεννημένα φυσικὰ εἰς ἅλωσιν καὶ φθοράν, ἐν οἷς ἀγνοοῦσιν βλασφημοῦντες, ἐν τῇ φθορᾷ αὐτῶν καὶ φθαρήσονται, 13 ἀδικούμενοι μισθὸν ἀδικίας· ἡδονὴν ἡγούμενοι τὴν ἐν ἡμέρᾳ τρυφήν, σπίλοι καὶ μῶμοι ἐντρυφῶντες ἐν ταῖς ἀπάταις αὐτῶν συνευωχούμενοι ὑμῖν, 14 ὀφθαλμοὺς ἔχοντες μεστοὺς μοιχαλίδος καὶ ἀκαταπαύστους ἁμαρτίας, δελεάζοντες ψυχὰς ἀστηρίκτους, καρδίαν γεγυμνασμένην πλεονεξίας ἔχοντες, κατάρας τέκνα, 15 καταλιπόντες εὐθεῖαν ὁδὸν ἐπλανήθησαν, ἐξακολουθήσαντες τῇ ὁδῷ τοῦ Βαλαὰμ τοῦ Βοσὸρ ὃς μισθὸν ἀδικίας ἠγάπησεν 16 ἔλεγξιν δὲ ἔσχεν ἰδίας παρανομίας· ὑποζύγιον ἄφωνον ἐν ἀνθρώπου φωνῇ φθεγξάμενον ἐκώλυσεν τὴν τοῦ προφήτου παραφρονίαν.

17 Οὗτοί εἰσιν πηγαὶ ἄνυδροι καὶ ὁμίχλαι ὑπὸ λαίλαπος ἐλαυνόμεναι, οἷς ὁ ζόφος τοῦ σκότους τετήρηται. 18 ὑπέρογκα γὰρ ματαιότητος φθεγγόμενοι δελεάζουσιν ἐν ἐπιθυμίαις σαρκὸς ἀσελγείαις τοὺς ὀλίγως ἀποφεύγοντας τοὺς ἐν πλάνῃ ἀναστρεφομένους, 19 ἐλευθερίαν αὐτοῖς ἐπαγγελλόμενοι, αὐτοὶ δοῦλοι ὑπάρχοντες τῆς φθορᾶς· ᾧ γάρ τις ἥττηται, τούτῳ καὶ δεδούλωται. 20 εἰ γὰρ ἀποφυγόντες τὰ μιάσματα τοῦ κόσμου ἐν ἐπιγνώσει τοῦ κυρίου καὶ σωτῆρος Ἰησοῦ Χριστοῦ τούτοις δὲ πάλιν ἐμπλακέντες ἡττῶνται, γέγονεν αὐτοῖς τὰ ἔσχατα χείρονα τῶν πρώτων. 21 κρεῖττον γὰρ ἦν αὐτοῖς μὴ ἐπεγνωκέναι τὴν ὁδὸν τῆς δικαιοσύνης ἢ ἐπιγνοῦσιν ὑποστρέψαι ἐκ τῆς παραδοθείσης αὐτοῖς ἁγίας ἐντολῆς· 22 συμβέβηκεν αὐτοῖς τὸ τῆς ἀληθοῦς παροιμίας· Κύων ἐπιστρέψας ἐπὶ τὸ ἴδιον ἐξέραμα, καί· Ὗς λουσαμένη εἰς κυλισμὸν βορβόρου.

3.1 Ταύτην ἤδη, ἀγαπητοί, δευτέραν ὑμῖν γράφω ἐπιστολήν, ἐν αἷς διεγείρω ὑμῶν ἐν ὑπομνήσει τὴν εἰλικρινῆ διάνοιαν, 2 μνησθῆναι τῶν προειρημένων ῥημάτων ὑπὸ τῶν ἁγίων προφητῶν καὶ τῆς τῶν ἀποστόλων ὑμῶν ἐντολῆς τοῦ κυρίου καὶ σωτῆρος, 3 τοῦτο πρῶτον γινώσκοντες ὅτι ἐλεύσονται ἐπʼ ἐσχάτων τῶν ἡμερῶν ἐν ἐμπαιγμονῇ ἐμπαῖκται κατὰ τὰς ἰδίας ἐπιθυμίας αὐτῶν πορευόμενοι 4 καὶ λέγοντες· Ποῦ ἐστιν ἡ ἐπαγγελία τῆς παρουσίας αὐτοῦ; ἀφʼ ἧς γὰρ οἱ πατέρες ἐκοιμήθησαν, πάντα οὕτως διαμένει ἀπʼ ἀρχῆς κτίσεως. 5 λανθάνει γὰρ αὐτοὺς τοῦτο θέλοντας ὅτι οὐρανοὶ ἦσαν ἔκπαλαι καὶ γῆ ἐξ ὕδατος καὶ διʼ ὕδατος συνεστῶσα τῷ τοῦ θεοῦ λόγῳ, 6 διʼ ὧν ὁ τότε κόσμος ὕδατι κατακλυσθεὶς ἀπώλετο· 7 οἱ δὲ νῦν οὐρανοὶ καὶ ἡ γῆ τῷ αὐτῷ λόγῳ τεθησαυρισμένοι εἰσὶν πυρὶ τηρούμενοι εἰς ἡμέραν κρίσεως καὶ ἀπωλείας τῶν ἀσεβῶν ἀνθρώπων.

8 Ἓν δὲ τοῦτο μὴ λανθανέτω ὑμᾶς, ἀγαπητοί, ὅτι μία ἡμέρα παρὰ κυρίῳ ὡς χίλια ἔτη καὶ χίλια ἔτη ὡς ἡμέρα μία. 9 οὐ βραδύνει κύριος τῆς ἐπαγγελίας, ὥς τινες βραδύτητα ἡγοῦνται, ἀλλὰ μακροθυμεῖ εἰς ὑμᾶς, μὴ βουλόμενός τινας ἀπολέσθαι ἀλλὰ πάντας εἰς μετάνοιαν χωρῆσαι. 10 ἥξει δὲ ἡμέρα κυρίου ὡς κλέπτης, ἐν ᾗ οἱ οὐρανοὶ ῥοιζηδὸν παρελεύσονται, στοιχεῖα δὲ καυσούμενα λυθήσεται, καὶ γῆ καὶ τὰ ἐν αὐτῇ ἔργα εὑρεθήσεται.

11 Τούτων οὕτως πάντων λυομένων ποταποὺς δεῖ ὑπάρχειν ὑμᾶς ἐν ἁγίαις ἀναστροφαῖς καὶ εὐσεβείαις, 12 προσδοκῶντας καὶ σπεύδοντας τὴν παρουσίαν τῆς τοῦ θεοῦ ἡμέρας, διʼ ἣν οὐρανοὶ πυρούμενοι λυθήσονται καὶ στοιχεῖα καυσούμενα τήκεται· 13 καινοὺς δὲ οὐρανοὺς καὶ γῆν καινὴν κατὰ τὸ ἐπάγγελμα αὐτοῦ προσδοκῶμεν, ἐν οἷς δικαιοσύνη κατοικεῖ.

14 Διό, ἀγαπητοί, ταῦτα προσδοκῶντες σπουδάσατε ἄσπιλοι καὶ ἀμώμητοι αὐτῷ εὑρεθῆναι ἐν εἰρήνῃ, 15 καὶ τὴν τοῦ κυρίου ἡμῶν μακροθυμίαν σωτηρίαν ἡγεῖσθε, καθὼς καὶ ὁ ἀγαπητὸς ἡμῶν ἀδελφὸς Παῦλος κατὰ τὴν δοθεῖσαν αὐτῷ σοφίαν ἔγραψεν ὑμῖν, 16 ὡς καὶ ἐν πάσαις ταῖς ἐπιστολαῖς λαλῶν ἐν αὐταῖς περὶ τούτων, ἐν αἷς ἐστιν δυσνόητά τινα, ἃ οἱ ἀμαθεῖς καὶ ἀστήρικτοι στρεβλοῦσιν ὡς καὶ τὰς λοιπὰς γραφὰς πρὸς τὴν ἰδίαν αὐτῶν ἀπώλειαν. 17 ὑμεῖς οὖν, ἀγαπητοί, προγινώσκοντες φυλάσσεσθε ἵνα μὴ τῇ τῶν ἀθέσμων πλάνῃ συναπαχθέντες ἐκπέσητε τοῦ ἰδίου στηριγμοῦ, 18 αὐξάνετε δὲ ἐν χάριτι καὶ γνώσει τοῦ κυρίου ἡμῶν καὶ σωτῆρος Ἰησοῦ Χριστοῦ. αὐτῷ ἡ δόξα καὶ νῦν καὶ εἰς ἡμέραν αἰῶνος. ἀμήν.

Holmes, M. W. (2010; 2010). The Greek New Testament: SBL Edition. Logos Bible Software.

Sunday, May 08, 2011

Last Supper, Eucharist, And The Didache

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Most Christians are familiar with the traditional words for the Eucharist or the Lord's Table/Lord's Supper as stated by Paul in 1 Corinthians 11:23-26 (which reflects some editing or development or standardization of the varying accounts of the Last Supper from the Gospels - see Jesus' actions and "words of institution" in Matthew 26:26-29, Mark 14:22-25, and Luke 22:14-20, compared with each other and with Paul's "tradition" in 1 Corinthians 11:23-26 below):
23 Ἐγὼ γὰρ παρέλαβον ἀπὸ τοῦ κυρίου, ὃ καὶ παρέδωκα ὑμῖν, ὅτι ὁ κύριος Ἰησοῦς ἐν τῇ νυκτὶ ᾗ παρεδίδετο ἔλαβεν ἄρτον 24 καὶ εὐχαριστήσας ἔκλασεν καὶ εἶπεν· Τοῦτό μού ἐστιν τὸ σῶμα τὸ ὑπὲρ ὑμῶν· τοῦτο ποιεῖτε εἰς τὴν ἐμὴν ἀνάμνησιν. 25 ὡσαύτως καὶ τὸ ποτήριον μετὰ τὸ δειπνῆσαι, λέγων· Τοῦτο τὸ ποτήριον ἡ καινὴ διαθήκη ἐστὶν ἐν τῷ ἐμῷ αἵματι· τοῦτο ποιεῖτε, ὁσάκις ἐὰν πίνητε, εἰς τὴν ἐμὴν ἀνάμνησιν. 26 ὁσάκις γὰρ ἐὰν ἐσθίητε τὸν ἄρτον τοῦτον καὶ τὸ ποτήριον πίνητε, τὸν θάνατον τοῦ κυρίου καταγγέλλετε, ἄχρι οὗ ἔλθῃ. (The Greek New Testament: SBL Edition)

23 For I received from the Lord what I also handed on to you, that the Lord Jesus on the night when he was betrayed took a loaf of bread, 24 and when he had given thanks, he broke it and said, “This is my body that is for you. Do this in remembrance of me.” 25 In the same way he took the cup also, after supper, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in my blood. Do this, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of me.” 26 For as often as you eat this bread and drink the cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death until he comes. (The Holy Bible: New Revised Standard Version. 1989. Nashville: Thomas Nelson Publishers.)
While many non-sacramental Protestant churches may simply read the above or the Gospel accounts for communion, liturgical and sacramental churches are more elaborate in what they say (and do). Here is the Eucharistic portion of The Divine Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom as used by the Eastern Orthodox Church:
Priest (in a low voice): Together with these blessed powers, merciful Master, we also proclaim and say: You are holy and most holy, You and Your only-begotten Son and Your Holy Spirit. You are holy and most holy, and sublime is Your glory. You so loved Your world that You gave Your only begotten Son so that whoever believes in Him should not perish, but have eternal life. He came and fulfilled the divine plan for us. On the night when He was betrayed, or rather when He gave Himself up for the life of the world, He took bread in His holy, pure, and blameless hands, gave thanks, blessed, sanctified, broke, and gave it to His holy disciples and apostles saying:

Priest: Take, eat, this is my Body which is broken for you for the forgiveness of sins.

People: Amen.

Priest (in a low voice): Likewise, after supper, He took the cup, saying:

Priest: Drink of it all of you; this is my Blood of the new Covenant which is shed for you and for many for the forgiveness of sins.

People: Amen.

Priest (in a low voice): Remembering, therefore, this command of the Savior, and all that came to pass for our sake, the cross, the tomb, the resurrection on the third day, the ascension into heaven, the enthronement at the right hand of the Father, and the second, glorious coming.

Priest: We offer to You these gifts from Your own gifts in all and for all.

People: We praise You, we bless You, we give thanks to You, and we pray to You, Lord our God.

Priest (in a low voice): Once again we offer to You this spiritual worship without the shedding of blood, and we ask, pray, and entreat You: send down Your Holy Spirit upon us and upon these gifts here presented.

Priest: And make this bread the precious Body of Your Christ.

Deacon: Amen.

Priest: And that which is in this cup the precious Blood of Your Christ.

Deacon: Amen.

Priest: Changing them by Your Holy Spirit.

Deacon: Amen. Amen. Amen.

Priest: So that they may be to those who partake of them for vigilance of soul, forgiveness of sins, communion of Your Holy Spirit, fulfillment of the kingdom of heaven, confidence before You, and not in judgment or condemnation.
But there was apparently another Eucharistic tradition in the church, preserved for us in The Didache ("The Teaching of [the Lord to the Gentiles by] the Twelve Apostles" - Διδαχὴ κυρίου διὰ τῶν δώδεκα ἀποστόλων τοῖς ἔθνεσιν) and possibly dating from as early as Paul's Epistle.

(Note: Information on The Didache and its history and importance can be found here: http://www.earlychristianwritings.com/didache.html.)

The text below is from Holmes, M. W. (1999). The Apostolic Fathers: Greek texts and English translations (Updated ed.) (258–262). Grand Rapids, Mich.: Baker Books.

9.1 Περὶ δὲ τῆς εὐχαριστίας, οὕτω εὐχαριστήσατε.
(2) πρῶτον περὶ τοῦ ποτηρίου· Εὐχαριστοῦμέν σοι, πάτερ ἡμῶν,ὑπὲρ τῆς ἁγίας ἀμπέλου Δαυὶδ τοῦ παιδός σου, ἧς ἐγνώρισας ἡμῖνδιὰ Ἰησοῦ τοῦ παιδός σου· σοὶ ἡ δόξα εἰς τοὺς αἰῶνας.
(3) περὶ δὲ τοῦ κλάσματος· Εὐχαριστοῦμέν σοι, πάτερ ἡμῶν, ὑπὲρ τῆς ζωῆς καὶ γνώσεως, ἧς ἐγνώρισας ἡμῖν διὰ Ἰησοῦ τοῦ παιδός σου· σοὶ ἡ δόξα εἰς τοὺς αἰῶνας.
(4) Ὥσπερ ἦν τοῦτο [τὸ] κλάσμα διεσκορπισμένον ἐπάνω τῶν ὀρέων καὶ συναχθὲν ἐγένετο ἕν, οὕτω συναχθήτω σου ἡ ἐκκλησίαἀπὸ τῶν περάτων τῆς γῆς εἰς τὴν σὴν βασιλείαν· ὅτι σοῦ ἐστιν ἡ δόξα καὶ ἡ δύναμις διὰ Ἰησοῦ Χριστοῦ18 εἰς τοὺς αἰῶνας.
(5) μηδεὶς δὲ φαγέτω μηδὲ πιέτω ἀπὸ τῆς εὐχαριστίας ὑμῶν, ἀλλʼ οἱ βαπτισθέντες εἰς ὄνομα κυρίου, καὶ γὰρ περὶ τούτου εἴρηκεν ὁ κύριος· Μὴ δῶτε τὸ ἅγιον τοῖς κυσί.

10.1 Μετὰ δὲ τὸ ἐμπλησθῆναι οὕτως εὐχαριστήσατε·
(2) Εὐχαριστοῦμέν σοι, πάτερ ἅγιε, ὑπὲρ τοῦ ἁγίου ὀνόματός σου οὗ κατεσκήνωσας ἐν ταῖς καρδίαις ἡμῶν, καὶ ὑπὲρ τῆς γνώσεως καὶ πίστεως καὶ ἀθανασίας ἧς ἐγνώρισας ἡμῖν διὰ Ἰησοῦ τοῦ παιδός σου· σοὶ ἡ δόξα εἰς τοὺς αἰῶνας.
(3) Σύ, δέσποτα παντοκράτορ, ἔκτισας τὰ πάντα ἕνεκεν τοῦ ὀνόματός σου, τροφήν τε καὶ ποτὸν ἔδωκας τοῖς ἀνθρώποις19 εἰς ἀπόλαυσιν, ἵνα σοι εὐχαριστήσωσιν·20 ἡμῖν δὲ ἐχαρίσω πνευματικὴν τροφὴν καὶ ποτὸν, καὶ ζωὴν αἰώνιον δια21 τοῦ παιδός σου.
(4) Πρὸ πάντων εὐχαριστοῦμέν σοι ὅτι δυνατὸς εἶ σύ· σοὶ22 ἡ δόξα εἰς τοὺς αἰῶνας.
(5) Μνήσθητι, κύριε, τῆς ἐκκλησίας σου, τοῦ ῥύσασθαι αὐτὴν ἀπὸ παντὸς πονηροῦ καὶ τελειῶσαι αὐτὴν ἐν τῇ ἀγάπῃ σου, καὶ σύναξον αὐτὴν ἀπὸ τῶν τεσσάρων ἀνέμων, τὴν ἁγιασθεῖσαν,23 εἰς τὴν σὴν βασιλείαν, ἣν ἡτοίμασας αὐτῇ· ὅτι σοῦ ἐστιν ἡ δύναμις καὶ ἡ δόξα εἰς τοὺς αἰῶνας.
(6) Ἐλθέτω χάρις καὶ παρελθέτω ὁ κόσμος οὗτος. Ὡσαννὰ τῷ θεῷ24 Δαυίδ. Εἴ τις ἅγιός ἐστιν, ἐρχέσθω· εἴ τις οὐκ ἐστί, μετανοείτω· Μαραναθά. Ἀμήν.
(7) Τοῖς δὲ προφήταις ἐπιτρέπετε εὐχαριστεῖν ὅσα θέλουσιν.25

The following section may also relate to the Eucharist:

14.1 Κατὰ κυριακὴν32 δὲ κυρίου συναχθέντες κλάσατε ἄρτον καὶ εὐχαριστήσατε, προεξομολογησάμενοι τὰ παραπτώματα ὑμῶν, ὅπως καθαρὰ ἡ θυσία ὑμῶν33 ᾖ.
(2) πᾶς δὲ ἔχων τὴν ἀμφιβολίαν μετὰ τοῦ ἑταίρου αὐτοῦ μὴ συνελθέτω ὑμῖν, ἕως οὗ διαλλαγῶσιν, ἵνα μὴ κοινωθῇ ἡ θυσία ὑμῶν.
(3) αὕτη γάρ ἐστιν ἡ ῥηθεῖσα ὑπὸ κυρίου· Ἐν παντὶ τόπῳ καὶ χρόνῳ προσφέρειν μοι θυσίαν καθαράν· ὅτι βασιλεὺς μέγας εἰμί, λέγει κύριος, καὶ τὸ ὄνομά μου θαυμαστὸν ἐν τοῖς ἔθνεσι.
9. Now concerning the Eucharist,29 give thanks as follows.
(2) First, concerning the cup: We give you thanks, our Father, for the holy vine of David your servant, which you have made known to us through Jesus, your servant (ὁ or ἡ παῖς, παιδός - see entry from BDAG Lexicon below); to you be the glory forever.
(3) And concerning the broken bread (τό κλάσμα, ατος - fragment, piece, crumb. In the New Testament only at Matthew 14:20, 15:37; Mark 6:43, 8:8,19-20; Luke 9:17; John 6:12-13, all having to do with the feeding of the 5,000 and the 4,000): We give you thanks, our Father, for the life and knowledge which you have made known to us through Jesus, your servant; to you be the glory forever.
(4) Just as this broken bread was scattered upon the mountains and then was gathered together and became one, so may your church be gathered together from the ends of the earth into your kingdom; for yours is the glory and the power through Jesus Christ forever.
(5) But let no one eat or drink of your Eucharist except those who have been baptized into the name of the Lord, for the Lord has also spoken concerning this: “Do not give what is holy to dogs.”30

10. And after you have had enough, give thanks as follows:
(2) We give you thanks, Holy Father, for your holy name which you have caused to dwell in our hearts, and for the knowledge and faith and immortality which you have made known to us through Jesus your servant; to you be the glory forever.
(3) You, almighty Master, created all things for your name’s sake, and gave food and drink to men to enjoy, that they might give you thanks; but to us you have graciously given spiritual food and drink, and eternal life through your servant.31
(4) Above all we give thanks because you are mighty; to you be the glory forever.
(5) Remember your church, Lord, to deliver it from all evil and to make it perfect in your love; and gather it, the one that has been sanctified, from the four winds into your kingdom, which you have prepared for it; for yours is the power and the glory forever.
(6) May grace come, and may this world pass away. Hosanna to the God of David. If anyone is holy, let him come; if anyone is not, let him repent.32 Maranatha!33 Amen.
(7) But permit the prophets to give thanks however they wish.34

The following section may also relate to the Eucharist:

14. On the Lord’s own day gather together and break bread and give thanks, having first confessed your sins so that your sacrifice may be pure.
(2) But let no one who has a quarrel with a companion join you until they have been reconciled, so that your sacrifice may not be defiled.
(3) For this is the sacrifice concerning which the Lord said, “In every place and time offer me a pure sacrifice, for I am a great king, says the Lord, and my name is marvelous among the nations.”39

[Encloses emendations of the Greek text.

18 δια …Χριστου C Georg] - ApCon

19 ανθρωποις C] υιοις των ανθρωπων Co

20 ινα …ευχαριστησωσιν C] - Co

21 δια C] + Ιησου Co

22 συ• σοι em Harnack] συ C; σοι Co Georg

23 την αγιασθεισαν C Georg] - Co

24 θεῳ C Georg] οικῳ Co; υιῳ ApCon 

25 θελουσιν C Georg] + περι δε του λογου (- τ. λ. ApCon) του μυρου ουτως ευχαριστησατε λεγοντες (- ApCon)• ευχαριστουμεν σοι πατερ (θεε δημιουργε των ολων και ApCon) υπερ (+ της ευωδιας ApCon) του μυρου (+ και υπερ του αθανατου αιωνος ApCon), ου εγνωρισας ημιν δια Ιησου του παιδος σου• σοι (οτι σου εστιν ApCon) η δοξα (+ και η δυναμις ApCon) εις τους αιωνας• αμην Co ApCon

32 κατα κυριακην C] καθʼ ημεραν Georg (ApCon?)

33 υμων Georg ApCon] ημων C

29 Eucharist: i.e., “the thanksgiving.” The word eucharistia, which in the New Testament is used in the general sense of “thankfulness” or “thanksgiving” (cf., e.g., Acts 24:3; Phil. 4:6; 1 Thess. 3:9), soon became a technical term for the primary act of “giving thanks,” namely the Lord’s Supper (cf. Ign. Smyrn 6.2; Justin Martyr, 1 Apology 65). Lightfoot, apparently in an effort to capture both the general and technical senses of the term, translates the word as “eucharistic thanksgiving.”

30 Matt. 7:6.

31 servant: so C; Co adds Jesus.

32 repent: or possibly be converted.

33 I.e., “Our Lord, come!”; cf. 1 Cor. 16:22.

34 Both Co and ApCon add here a section, not found in C or Georg, which reads as follows: And concerning the ointment, give thanks as follows: We give you thanks, Father, for the fragrant ointment which you have made known to us through Jesus your servant; to you be the glory forever. Amen. See Kraft, Barnabas and the Didache, 167–69, for a discussion.

39 Mal. 1:11, 14.


παῖς, παιδός, ὁ or (Hom. et al.) child.
...
[3] one who is committed in total obedience to another, slave, servant
...
ⓑ of special relationships
...
γ. of Christ in his relation to God. In this connection it has the mng. servant because of the identification of the ‘servant of God’ of certain OT pass. w. the Messiah (Is 52:13 et al.; BJanowski/PStuhlmacher, edd., Der Leidende Gottesknecht ’96 [lit.]; DBS XII 1000–1016) Mt 12:18 (cp. Is 42:1); B 6:1; B 9:2 (on the last two cp. Is 50:10). So prob. also D 9:2b (because of the immediate proximity of Δαυὶδ ὁ παῖς σου 9:2a); 9:3; 10:2f.—In other places (cp. Ath. 10, 2; 12, 2 al.; Iren. 3, 12, 5 [Harv. II 58, 8]) the mng. son is certainly to be preferred (παῖς was so understood in the Gk. world, when it expressed a relationship to a divinity: Il. 2, 205 Κρόνου παῖς; Sappho 1, 2 Diehl; Alcaeus 1; Bacchylides 17, 70 Minos, a παῖς of Zeus; Hermocles [IV/III B.C.] p. 174 Coll. Alex.=Athen. 6, 63, 253d: Demetrius Poliorcetes as π. Ποσειδῶνος θεοῦ; Diod S 17, 51, 1 the god Ammon has his prophet address Alexander thus χαῖρε, ὦ παῖ; what follows makes it clear that procreation is meant; Plut., Mor. 180d; Maximus Tyr. 14, 1d; Paus. 2, 10, 3 Ἄρατος Ἀσκληπιοῦ π.; Diogenes, Ep. 36, 1; Philostrat., Vi. Apoll. 7, 24 p. 279, 4; Porphyr., Vi. Plot. 23; Iambl., Vi. Pyth. 2, 10; IG IV2, 128, 50 [280 B.C.] and oft.; Sb 8314, 9 Hermes conducts the dead man to the Elysian fields ἅμα παισὶ θεῶν. S. above bα the παῖδες θεῶν. Cp. also Herm. Wr. 13, 2 ὁ γεννώμενος θεοῦ θεὸς παῖς; 13, 4; 14; Rtzst., Poim. 223f.—Celsus 7, 9) παῖς αὐτοῦ ὁ μονογενὴς Ἰησοῦς Χρ. MPol 20:2. God as ὁ τοῦ ἀγαπητοῦ κ. εὐλογητοῦ παιδὸς Ἰησοῦ Χρ. πατήρ 14:1. Corresp. Christ as God’s ἀγαπητὸς παῖς 14:3; Dg 8:11. The same is true of the other pass. in Dg: 8:9; 9:1.—In the case of the rest of the pass. it is hardly poss. to decide which mng. is better: Ac 3:13, 26; 4:27, 30 (unless the παῖς σου your servant of 4:25 should demand the same transl. for the other pass. as well; JMénard, CBQ 19, ’57, 83–92 [Acts]); 1 Cl 59:2–4 (in wordplay w. παιδεύω; but here the word ἠγαπημένος repeated in vss. 2 and 3 [cp. the magical pap of c. 300 A.D. in TSchermann, TU 34, 2b, 1909, 3: Christ as ἠγαπημένος παῖς] could suggest the transl. son). - Arndt, W., Danker, F. W., & Bauer, W. (2000). A Greek-English lexicon of the New Testament and other early Christian literature (3rd ed.) (750–751). Chicago: University of Chicago Press.


Jesus' actions and "words of institution" in Matthew 26:26-29, Mark 14:22-25, and Luke 22:14-20, compared with each other and with Paul's "tradition" in 1 Corinthians 11:23-26

blue = Common to Matthew, Mark, Luke
red = Common to Matthew, Mark
purple = Common to Matthew, Luke (ἀπʼ/ἀπὸ only)
green = Common to Mark, Luke (ἔδωκεν αὐτοῖς and θεοῦ only)
Underlining shows that Paul's words are largely taken from the longer form (see the Textual Commentary notes below) of Luke's account. (Or did Luke borrow from Paul, or did both borrow from the same tradition?):

Matthew 26:
26 Ἐσθιόντων δὲ αὐτῶν λαβὼν ὁ Ἰησοῦς ἄρτον καὶ εὐλογήσας ἔκλασεν καὶ δοὺς τοῖς μαθηταῖς εἶπεν· Λάβετε φάγετε, τοῦτό ἐστιν τὸ σῶμά μου. 27 καὶ λαβὼν ποτήριον καὶ εὐχαριστήσας ἔδωκεν αὐτοῖς λέγων· Πίετε ἐξ αὐτοῦ πάντες, 28 τοῦτο γάρ ἐστιν τὸ αἷμά μου τῆς διαθήκης τὸ περὶ πολλῶν ἐκχυννόμενον εἰς ἄφεσιν ἁμαρτιῶν· 29 λέγω δὲ ὑμῖν, οὐ μὴ πίω ἀπʼ ἄρτι ἐκ τούτου τοῦ γενήματος τῆς ἀμπέλου ἕως τῆς ἡμέρας ἐκείνης ὅταν αὐτὸ πίνω μεθʼ ὑμῶν καινὸν ἐν τῇ βασιλείᾳ τοῦ πατρός μου.
Mark 14:
22 Καὶ ἐσθιόντων αὐτῶν λαβὼν ἄρτον εὐλογήσας ἔκλασεν καὶ ἔδωκεν αὐτοῖς καὶ εἶπεν· Λάβετε, τοῦτό ἐστιν τὸ σῶμά μου. 23 καὶ λαβὼν ποτήριον εὐχαριστήσας ἔδωκεν αὐτοῖς, καὶ ἔπιον ἐξ αὐτοῦ πάντες. 24 καὶ εἶπεν αὐτοῖς· Τοῦτό ἐστιν τὸ αἷμά μου τῆς διαθήκης τὸ ἐκχυννόμενον ὑπὲρ πολλῶν. 25 ἀμὴν λέγω ὑμῖν ὅτι οὐκέτι οὐ μὴ πίω ἐκ τοῦ γενήματος τῆς ἀμπέλου ἕως τῆς ἡμέρας ἐκείνης ὅταν αὐτὸ πίνω καινὸν ἐν τῇ βασιλείᾳ τοῦ θεοῦ.
Luke 22:
14 Καὶ ὅτε ἐγένετο ἡ ὥρα, ἀνέπεσεν καὶ οἱ ἀπόστολοι σὺν αὐτῷ. 15 καὶ εἶπεν πρὸς αὐτούς· Ἐπιθυμίᾳ ἐπεθύμησα τοῦτο τὸ πάσχα φαγεῖν μεθʼ ὑμῶν πρὸ τοῦ με παθεῖν· 16 λέγω γὰρ ὑμῖν ὅτι οὐ μὴ φάγω αὐτὸ ἕως ὅτου πληρωθῇ ἐν τῇ βασιλείᾳ τοῦ θεοῦ. 17 καὶ δεξάμενος ποτήριον εὐχαριστήσας εἶπεν· Λάβετε τοῦτο καὶ διαμερίσατε εἰς ἑαυτούς· 18 λέγω γὰρ ὑμῖν, οὐ μὴ πίω ἀπὸ τοῦ νῦν ἀπὸ τοῦ γενήματος τῆς ἀμπέλου ἕως οὗ ἡ βασιλεία τοῦ θεοῦ ἔλθῃ. 19 καὶ λαβὼν ἄρτον εὐχαριστήσας ἔκλασεν καὶ ἔδωκεν αὐτοῖς λέγων· Τοῦτό ἐστιν τὸ σῶμά μου [τὸ ὑπὲρ ὑμῶν διδόμενον· τοῦτο ποιεῖτε εἰς τὴν ἐμὴν ἀνάμνησιν. 20 καὶ τὸ ποτήριον ὡσαύτως μετὰ τὸ δειπνῆσαι, λέγων· Τοῦτο τὸ ποτήριον ἡ καινὴ διαθήκη ἐν τῷ αἵματί μου, τὸ ὑπὲρ ὑμῶν ἐκχυννόμενον].
1 Corinthians 11:
23 Ἐγὼ γὰρ παρέλαβον ἀπὸ τοῦ κυρίου, ὃ καὶ παρέδωκα ὑμῖν, ὅτι ὁ κύριος Ἰησοῦς ἐν τῇ νυκτὶ ᾗ παρεδίδετο ἔλαβεν ἄρτον 24 καὶ εὐχαριστήσας ἔκλασεν καὶ εἶπεν· Τοῦτό μού ἐστιν τὸ σῶμα τὸ ὑπὲρ ὑμῶν· τοῦτο ποιεῖτε εἰς τὴν ἐμὴν ἀνάμνησιν. 25 ὡσαύτως καὶ τὸ ποτήριον μετὰ τὸ δειπνῆσαι, λέγων· Τοῦτο τὸ ποτήριον ἡ καινὴ διαθήκη ἐστὶν ἐν τῷ ἐμῷ αἵματι· τοῦτο ποιεῖτε, ὁσάκις ἐὰν πίνητε, εἰς τὴν ἐμὴν ἀνάμνησιν. 26 ὁσάκις γὰρ ἐὰν ἐσθίητε τὸν ἄρτον τοῦτον καὶ τὸ ποτήριον πίνητε, τὸν θάνατον τοῦ κυρίου καταγγέλλετε, ἄχρι οὗ ἔλθῃ.

Matthew 26:
26 while-eating but them having-taken the Jesus a-loaf and having-blessed he-broke and having-given to-the disciples he-said: Take eat, this is the body my. 27 and having-taken a-cup and having-thanked he-gave to-them saying: Drink out-of it all, 28 this for is the blood my of-the covenant the concerning many poured-out unto forgiveness of-sins. 29 I-say but to-you, no not I-will-drink from this-time out-of this of-the yield of-the vine until the day that whenever it I-drink with you new in the kingdom of-the father my.

Mark 14:
22 And while-eating them having-taken a-loaf having-blessed he-broke and he-gave to-them and he-said: Take, this is the body my. 23 And having-taken a-cup having-thanked he-gave to-them, and they-drank out-of it all. 24 And he-said to-them: This is the blood my of-the covenant the poured-out for many. 25 Truly I-say to-you that no-longer no not I-will-drink out-of of-the yield of-the vine until the day that whenever it I-drink new in the kingdom of-the God.

Luke 22:
14 And when happened the hour, he-reclined and the apostles with him. 15 and he-said to them: With-desire I-desired this the Passover to-eat with you before the me to-suffer. 16 I-say for to-you that no not I-will-eat it until whatever it-should-be-fulfilled in the kingdom of-the God. 17 And having-welcomed a-cup having-thanked he-said: Take this and divide unto yourselves; 18 I-say for to-you, no not I-will-drink from the now from of-the yield of-the vine until where the kingdom of-the God should-come. 19 And having-taken a-loaf having-thanked he-broke and he-gave to-them saying: This is the body my [the for you being-given; this do unto the mine remembrance. 20 And the cup likewise after the to-sup, saying: This the cup the new covenant in the blood my, the for you poured-out].
1 Corinthians 11:
23 I for received from the Lord, which and I-delivered-up to-you, that the Lord Jesus in the night in-which he-was-being-delivered-up took a-loaf 24 and having-thanked he-broke and he-said: This my is the body the for you; this do unto the mine remembrance. 25 Likewise and the cup after the to-sup, saying: This the cup the new covenant is in the mine blood; this do, as-often-as should you-should-drink, unto the mine remembrance. 26 As-often-as for should you-should-eat the loaf this and the cup you-should-drink, the death of-the Lord you-proclaim, until-the-time where he-should-come.

Textual Commentary on Luke 22:17–20 {B}*

The Lukan account of the Last Supper has been transmitted in two principal forms: (1) the longer, or traditional, text of cup-bread-cup is read by all Greek manuscripts except D and by most of the ancient versions and Fathers; (2) the shorter, or Western, text (read by D ita, d, ff2, i, l) omits verses 19b and 20 (τὸ ὑπὲρ ὑμῶν … ἐκχυννόμενον), thereby presenting the sequence of cup-bread.1 Four intermediate forms of text, which appear to be compromises between the two principal forms, are the following: (a) two Old Latin manuscripts (itb, e) modify the shorter text by placing ver. 19a before ver. 17, thus securing the customary order of bread-cup; (b) the Curetonian Syriac reads the same, but is enlarged with the wording of 1 Cor 11:24 added to ver. 19a; (c) the Sinaitic Syriac is still further expanded, chiefly by the insertion of “after they had supped” at the beginning of ver. 17 and “this is my blood, the new covenant” (ver. 20b) between verses 17 and 18; and (d) the Peshitta Syriac lacks (perhaps due to homoeoteleuton) verses 17 and 18, as do also l32, two Sahidic manuscripts, and one Bohairic manuscript. For convenience of comparison the six forms of the text are set forth in parallel columns on p. 149.

It is obvious that the chief problem is concerned with the merits of the two principal forms of text, since each of the others can be accounted for more or less satisfactorily as modifications of either the shorter or the longer form.

Majority Text

17. καὶ δεξάμενος ποτήριον εὐχαριστήσας εἶπεν, Λάβετε τοῦτο καὶ διαμερίσατε εἰς ἑαυτούς.

18. λέγω γὰρ ὑμῖν, [ὅτι] οὐ μὴ πίω ἀπὸ τοῦ νῦν ἀπὸ τοῦ γενήματος τῆς ἀμπέλου ἕως οὗ ἡ βασιλεία τοῦ θεοῦ ἔλθῃ.

19. καὶ λαβὼν ἄρτον εὐχαριστήσας ἔκλασεν καὶ ἔδωκεν αὐτοῖς λέγων, Τοῦτό ἐστιν τὸ σῶμά μου τὸ ὑπὲρ ὑμῶν διδόμενον· τοῦτο ποιεῖτε εἰς τὴν ἐμὴν ἀνάμνησιν.

20. καὶ τὸ ποτήριον ὡσαύτως μετὰ τὸ δειπνῆσαι, λέγων, Τοῦτο τὸ ποτήριον ἡ καινὴ διαθήκη ἐν τῷ αἵματί μου, τὸ ὑπὲρ ὑμῶν ἐκχυννόμενον.
D ita, d, ff2, i, l

17. καὶ δεξάμενος τὸ ποτήριον εὐχαριστήσας εἶπεν, Λάβετε τοῦτο, διαμερίσατε ἑαυτοῖς.

18. λέγω γὰρ ὑμῖν ἀπὸ τοῦ νῦν οὐ μὴ πίω ἀπὸ τοῦ γενήματος τῆς ἀμπέλου ἕως οὗ ἔλθῃ ἡ βασιλεία τοῦ θεοῦ.

19. καὶ λαβὼν ἄρτον εὐχαριστήσας ἔκλασεν καὶ ἔδωκεν αὐτοῖς λέγων, Τοῦτό ἐστιν τὸ σῶμά μου.
itb, e

19. καὶ λαβὼν ἄρτον εὐχαριστήσας ἔκλασεν καὶ ἔδωκεν αὐτοῖς λέγων, Τοῦτό ἐστιν τὸ σῶμά μου.

17. καὶ δεξάμενος τὸ ποτήριον εὐχαριστήσας εἶπεν, Λάβετε (τοῦτο. om. e) διαμερίσατε εἰς ἑαυτούς.

18. λέγω γὰρ ὑμῖν (ὅτι, om. e) ἀπὸ τοῦ νῦν οὐ μὴ πίω ἀπὸ τοῦ γενήματος (+ τούτου b) τῆς ἀμπέλου (+ ταύτης b) ἕως οὗ ἔλθῃ ἡ βασιλεία τοῦ θεοῦ.
syrc

19. καὶ λαβὼν ἄρτον εὐχαριστήσας ἔκλασεν καὶ ἔδωκεν αὐτοῖς καὶ ἔλεγεν, Τοῦτό ἐστιν τὸ σῶμά μου τὸ ὑπὲρ ὑμῶν· τοῦτο ποιεῖτε εἰς τὴν ἐμὴν ἀνάμνησιν.

17. καὶ δεξάμενος τὸ ποτήριον εὐχαριστήσας εἶπεν, Λάβετε τοῦτο, διαμερίσατε εἰς ἑαυτούς.

18. λέγω ὑμῖν ὅτι ἀπὸ τοῦ νῦν οὐ μὴ πίω ἀπὸ τοῦ γενήματος τούτου τῆς ἀμπέλου ἕως οὗ ἔλθῃ ἡ βασιλεία τοῦ θεοῦ.
syrs

19. καὶ λαβῶν ἄρτον εὐχαριστήσας ἔκλασεν καὶ ἔδωκεν αὐτοῖς καὶ ἔλεγεν, Τοῦτό ἐστιν τὸ σῶμά μου τὸ ὑπὲρ ὑμῶν διδόμενον· τοῦτο ποιεῖτε εἰς τὴν ἐμὴν ἀνάμνησιν.

20a. καὶ μετὰ τὸ δειπνῆσαι.

17. δεξάμενος τὸ ποτήριον εὐχαριστήσας εἶπεν, Λάβετε τοῦτο, διαμερίσατε εἰς ἑαυτούς.

20b. τοῦτό ἐστιν τὸ αἷμά μου ἡ διαθήκη ἡ καινή.

18. λέγω γὰρ ὑμῖν ὅτι ἀπὸ τοῦ νῦν οὐ μὴ πίω ἀπὸ τοῦ γενήματος τούτου ἕως οὗ ἔλθῃ ἡ βασιλεία τοῦ θεοῦ.
syrp

19. καὶ λαβὼν ἄρτον εὐχαριστήσας ἔκλασεν καὶ ἔδωκεν αὐτοῖς καὶ ἔλεγεν, Τοῦτό ἐστιν τὸ σῶμά μου τὸ ὑπὲρ ὑμῶν διδόμενον· τοῦτο ποιεῖτε εἰς τὴν ἐμὴν ἀνάμνησιν.

20. καὶ ὡσαύτως καὶ τὸ ποτήριον μετὰ τὸ δειπνῆσαι, λέγων, Τοῦτο τὸ ποτήριον ἡ καινὴ διαθήκη ἐν τῷ αἵματί μου τὸ ὑπὲρ ὑμῶν ἐκχυννόμενον.

Table of six forms of the text of Lk 22:17–20, reproduced (with a few minor modifications) from the chapter, “The Textual Data,” by Sir Frederick G. Kenyon and S. C. E. Legg, in The Ministry and the Sacraments, ed. by Roderic Dunkerley (London, 1937), pp. 284 f. By “Majority Text” at the head of the first column is meant the consensus of P75 א A B C K L Tvid W X Δ ΘΠ Ψ 063 f 1 f 13 apparently all minuscules itc, q, r1 vg syrpal copsa, bo arm geo. It will be understood that the Greek form given to the versions is in some details uncertain.

Considerations in favor of the originality of the longer text include the following: (a) The external evidence supporting the shorter reading represents only part of the Western type of text, whereas the other representatives of the Western text join with witnesses belonging to all the other ancient text-types in support of the longer reading. (b) It is easier to suppose that the Bezan editor, puzzled by the sequence of cup-bread-cup, eliminated the second mention of the cup without being concerned about the inverted order of institution thus produced, than that the editor of the longer version, to rectify the inverted order, brought in from Paul the second mention of the cup, while letting the first mention stand. (c) The rise of the shorter version can be accounted for in terms of the theory of disciplina arcana, i. e. in order to protect the Eucharist from profanation, one or more copies of the Gospel according to Luke, prepared for circulation among non-Christian readers, omitted the sacramental formula after the beginning words.

Considerations in favor of the originality of the shorter text include the following: (a) Generally in New Testament textual criticism the shorter reading is to be preferred. (b) Since the words in verses 19b and 20 are suspiciously similar to Paul’s words in 1 Cor 11:24b–25, it appears that the latter passage was the source of their interpolation into the longer text. (c) Verses 19b–20 contain several linguistic features that are non-Lukan.

The weight of these considerations was estimated differently by different members of the Committee. A minority preferred the shorter text as a Western non-interpolation (see the Note following 24.53). The majority, on the other hand, impressed by the overwhelming preponderance of external evidence supporting the longer form, explained the origin of the shorter form as due to some scribal accident or misunderstanding.2 The similarity between verses 19b–20 and 1 Cor 11:24b–25 arises from the familiarity of the evangelist with the liturgical practice among Pauline churches, a circumstance that accounts also for the presence of non-Lukan expressions in verses 19b–20.


* The letter {B} indicates that the text is almost certain.

1 The same sequence also occurs in the Didache, ix, 2–3; cf. also 1 Cor 10:16.

2 Kenyon and Legg, who prefer the longer form of text, explain the origin of the other readings as follows: “The whole difficulty arose, in our opinion, from a misunderstanding of the longer version. The first cup given to the disciples to divide among themselves should be taken in connection with the previous verse (ver. 16) as referring to the eating of the Passover with them at the reunion in Heaven. This is followed by the institution of the Sacrament, to be repeated continually on earth in memory of Him. This gives an intelligible meaning to the whole, while at the same time it is easy to see that it would occasion difficulties of interpretation, which would give rise to the attempts at revision that appear in various forms of the shorter version” (Sir Frederick G. Kenyon and S. C. E. Legg in The Ministry and the Sacraments, ed. by Roderic Dunkerley [London, 1937], pp. 285 f.).

Metzger, B. M., & United Bible Societies. (1994). A textual commentary on the Greek New Testament, second edition a companion volume to the United Bible Societies' Greek New Testament (4th rev. ed.). London; New York: United Bible Societies.