Loading ...
Sorry, an error occurred while loading the content.

Re: [John_Lit] indefinite QEOI

Expand Messages
  • Maluflen@aol.com
    In a message dated 3/17/2001 12:45:27 AM Eastern Standard Time, toioutous_zatei@yahoo.com writes:
    Message 1 of 1 , Mar 17, 2001
    • 0 Attachment
      In a message dated 3/17/2001 12:45:27 AM Eastern Standard Time,
      toioutous_zatei@... writes:

      << My question centers around the JEWISH concept of an indefinite QEOS
      in a context that John 1:1 presents. That is, my question is meant to
      understand "a god" as a possible translation within KAI QEOS HN hO
      LOGOS (John 1:1c).>>

      What is clear about QEOS in this verse is not so much that it is indefinite
      as that it is predicative: divinity is predicated of the LOGOS. I'm not sure
      this is Jewish either: it may belong to a realm of thought that is properly
      Christian, the beginning of a trinitatian (or, at this stage, binitarian)
      notion of God. A subject (LOGOS) who is distinct from (the) God (1:1b) is
      affirmed to be himself a divine being (1:1c).

      <<It would seem that John presents a temporal reference here that
      precedes the creation of PANTA (this I consider THE TEMPORAL CONTEXT
      of this verse).

      And if one concedes a JEWISH concept of "a god," would not this
      lesser being be part of creation? That is, John presents this LOGOS
      as preexisting the creation of PANTA.>>

      In spite of some translations, it is not clear that 1:3 is speaking of
      creation at all. The proper Greek expression for "the universe of created
      beings" is not PANTA, but TA PANTA. And the author does not use KTIZW, or
      even POIEIN, but GINOMAI, which is not really a creation word, but more
      usually refers to something "happening" (cf. 1:6). So the LOGOS was said to
      be "in" (an unspecified) beginning with God, to be himself a divine being,
      and to be a principle through which everything that happens (salvation
      historically?) happens. At this point, however, perhaps creation could
      re-enter by a back door: it is possible that creation is viewed by John as
      the first great event in salvation history.

      << I am trying to understand how a first century JEW would not consider
      it blasphemy to describe "a god" in a context that presents the state
      of affairs before the creation of PANTA, when presumably only YHWH
      existed.>>

      But could you imagine a Christian having such an idea? First centuries Jews,
      who were also Christians, were, by the nature of an emerging new religion,
      often inclined to think thoughts that a (mere) Jew would regard as
      blasphemous.

      I hope these thoughts help -- and that they will be followed up by additional
      comments from specialists in John, which I am not.

      Leonard Maluf
    Your message has been successfully submitted and would be delivered to recipients shortly.