On Tuesday morning the pastors of Lutheran Saints in Ministry gather in Fairborn Ohio to discuss the texts for Sunday.

These are the contributions that are brought to the table.

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

John 6:51-58 Greek text studies -- Pr. Fourman

Greek Study Ephesians 5:15-21

v15 βλεπετε (βλεπω) pres. imp."be [very careful]" – give watch;  diligently; an idiom; "pay close attention to your behavior."
περιπατειτε (περιπατεω) pres. "live" – actually “walk” – another idiom, place one foot in front of the other and walk the path…. So conduct yourselves;.
ως ασοφοι (ος) "as wise" - "As", ως, introduces a comparison; the wise understand God's purpose and apply their life to it, the foolish do not - so foolishness is not so much the result of willful disregard as it is of inattention!

v16 exagorazomenoi (exagorazw) pres. part. "making the most of [every opportunity]" - from where we derive the word “exaggerate”! It literally means to “redeem the time”. The participle is probably instrumental, expressing means by which the reader is to be "wise", but could also be modal, expressing manner, how to walk wisely. 
οτι "because [the days are evil]" – causal, the complete phrase picks up on the scriptural description of life in the here and now in the terms of "this present evil age", while there is the possibility it an eschatological use (ie. "evil days" = "the last days") it is more likely descriptive of how Paul, and by extension his church, sees the world.  Nothing new under the sun!

v17 μη γινεσθε (γινομαι) pres. imp. "do not be [foolish]" – a fool, in the Old Testament, is a person who does not recognize their place under the Lord.  Here Paul may be encouraging disciples to know the will of the Lord before acting.
συνιετε (συνιημι) pres. imp. "understand" – reason, gain insight, comprehend; best rendered "try to understand".
του κυριου gen "[the will] of the Lord" - the genitive is verbal, referring to Jesus as Lord. Paul is again making the point that a believer's life is shaped "in accordance with the truth that is in Jesus", 4:20, 21. This idea has nothing to do with personal guidance but God's plan to gather a people to himself by grace through faith.

v18 μη μεθυσκεσθε (μεθυσκω) pres. imp. "do not get drunk" - the present imperative here does not mean Paul's readers are getting drunk, but rather serves as a prohibition against a particular course of action. This prohibition comes out of the blue. Maybe Paul knows something we do not, but it is more likely he is just using this prohibition as a foil for the exhortation that follows – so a rhetorical flourish that resonates.
οινω (ος) dat. "on wine" - dative is instrumental, expressing means.
ασωτια (α) "debauchery" - reckless living
πληρουσθε (πληροω) pres. imp. "be filled" - present imperfective expressing continuity. So  "be continually filled with/by the Spirit." Since we are not told what this "filling" entails, (although this phrase has already been used) it has something to do with  the work of grace through faith that shapes us into the image of Christ and enables us to become what we already are in Christ. So the filling of the Spirit likely refers to a process which begins at baptism and continues as the believer accesses the Spirit in daily life.
εν πνευματι "with the Spirit" - clearly the Holy Spirit. 

v19 λαλουντες (λαλεω) pres. part. "speaking" - The first quality describing the characteristics of a person "filled" by the Spirit, is their "speaking" to one another in song. Presumably the context for this meaningful communication is worship.
ψαλμοις και υμνοις και ω δαις "psalms, hymns and songs" - Some commentators distinguish between psalms, hymns and spiritual songs, but they are probably just different terms for the same thing – worship music. Some scholars argue that in this passage Paul gives a glimpse of church worship. The members sing to one another antiphonally but the singing is offered to the Lord not to each other! So people seeking a certain type of music for “authentic” worship may be a bit put off by Paul’s description.  
πηευματικαις adj. "spiritual" - qualifies all three nouns (plasm, hymns, songs).
ψαλλοντες (ψαλλω) pres. part. "make music" - "Singing songs" and "making music" express the same thing. Being filled by the Spirit entails "singing truth to each other." When believers meet, they meet Jesus, and in that meeting they worship him. This they do in prayer, thanksgiving, hearing, and here in singing songs from 
τη καρδια (α) dat. "[your] heart" – or perhaps "with your heart".
τω κυριω (ος) dat. "to the Lord" - dative purpose – the point (focus, source, intent) of the singing of music is God, not us. 

v20 ευχαριστουντες (ευχαριστεω) pres. part. "giving thanks" - serves as the second feature of a person filled by the Spirit. The modifiers describe the thanksgiving: 
i] "always", it is regular, or better "constant"; 
ii] "for everything", it is comprehensive. 
iii] "in the name of the Lord...", it is directed to God through Christ.
τω θεω και πατρι dat. "to God the Father" is the source and goal of thanksgiving.

v21 υποτασσομενοι (υποτασσω) pres. part. "submit" – an important Pauline word, it means to submit your own will to that of another, whose will is superior.  The verb describes the submission in the military, as a slave to a Lord, an apostle to a  prophet, pastor/teacher to the head of a household mutual submission as husband to wife in marriage; here mutual submission/reciprocal subordination is most likely intended.
αλληλοις dat. pro. "to one another" - Dative of indirect object.
Χριστου (ος) gen. "for Christ" - genitive is verbal, although as is so often the case with a genitive it has an adjectival function in that it limits the noun (here "fear") so specifying the type of fear in mind.
Greek Study John 6:51-58

v:51 (for details on vs 51 see last week)

v52 εμαχοντο (μαχομαι) imperf. "[the Jews] began to argue sharply" – a very strong word, "strove", note the allusion to Num.20:3. 
λεγοντες (λεγω) pres. part. "saying” 
ουτος pro. "this one” a derogatory.
δουναι (διδωμι) aor. inf. "give" - the problem is not expressed in the terms "how are we meant to eat his flesh?", but "how can he give us his flesh?" 
φαγειν (εσθιω) aor. inf. "to eat" - infinitive expresses purpose; "in order to eat."

v53 αμην αμην "[I tell you] the truth" - to reinforce the importance of a statement. This is the 4th time this phrase is used in this chapter!
εαν μη + subj. "unless" – a negated conditional clause 3rd. class, where the condition has the possibility of being realized.
πιητε (πινω) aor. subj. "drink" - aorist indicating a once only action of drinking. Restating the necessity of eating his flesh which has already caused problems with the Jews, Jesus adds that it is necessary to drink his blood. The statement is clearly intended to confront like the kingdom parables do in Matthew, and draw out the true seeker from the crowd. So far Jesus has made the point that for the people of Israel in the wilderness manna was a miraculous bread but once eaten hunger returned and inevitably death. The heavenly bread God gives in Jesus, once eaten, results in eternal life. So a person must eat this bread and "come" to Jesus, "look on" Jesus, "believe" in Jesus. The next step in this imagery is in v51 where Jesus aligns the bread with his flesh. The Jews balk at this image, even though it is figurative (v52). Jesus restates the idea and reinforces it with "drink his blood." Although numerous interpretations have been suggested, especially in relating this verse to the Eucharist, "blood" most likely represents "shed blood” and therefore, “violent death". So this is more likely a passion prediction than a Eucharistic theology.
του ανθρωπου (ος) gen. "[the Son] of Man" - adjectival, of relationship. This messianic title from Ezekiel refers to one who receives heavenly authority and rule from the Ancient of Days. It is favored by Jesus because of its illusive nature. It can be understood to mean nothing more than "man."
ουκ εχετε (εχω) pres. "you have no" – if one fails to believe in the crucified Christ then one fails to possess life in abundance. 

v54 ο τρωγων (τρωγω) pres. part. "whoever eats" The participle, as with πινων, "drinking", serves as a substantive. The eating is present tense, rather than aorist. The verb was originally used of animals eating, later of humans, but eating in a rough manner. Brown sees this literalism as evidence that the eating and drinking is a reference to the Lord's Supper, but other scholars believe this unlikely. The present tense may indicate continued action. 
αναστησω (ανιστημι) fut. "I will resurrect [them]". 
την εσχατη ημερα dat. "the last day" – i.e. the day of judgment.

v55 αληθης adj. "true”. The spiritual sustenance for eternal life is not manna but the genuine item supplied by Christ, namely, his sacrifice. So he is the “real deal”.
v56 ο τρωγων (τρωγω) pres. part. "the one eating”.
μενει (μενω) pres. "remains" - Present tense indicating a continuing state. The one who eats and drinks of Christ (believes in Christ crucified) becomes one with Christ, and thus identified with Christ and shares the reward of his faithfulness.

v57 ο ζων πατηρ "the living Father" - The Father who possesses life and is the one who grants the Son to possess life. 

v58 ο .... καταβας (καταβαινω) aor. part. "that came down" - participle is adjectival,  limiting "bread".
οι πατερες "your forefathers" - ate and died.
ου καθως "just as" - the comparison is unclear. Is the comparison between the ancestors and those who eat the bread Christ supplies, or is the comparison between the bread the ancestors ate and the bread that Jesus gives? The Greek is unclear.

ο τρωγων "he who feeds" - participle serves as a substantive. Again, a singular person is used of personal faith in Christ, although the individual is part of a community of believers.

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