Saturday, 31 May 2014

Love your Neighbour and do not Hate!

Matthew 5. 43 – 48


Jesus asks us not to hate μισέω but (44) to love ἀγαπη our enemies.
I but say to you love ἀγαπᾶτε (note imperative form) the enemies of yours kai pray for them (hyper means for rather than over here) and not it is literally pray for those who hunt you for διωκω is to hunt prey and persecute a later meaning taken from the Greeks using this verb is also mean accuse in a court case to hunt someone to justice!

An ἐχθρός is the person you hate or loathe not merely dislike or are uncomfortable with. They may or may not feel the same way about you. Whatever the situation and however mutual the feeling and whatever degree hate is something to avoid.

45 Note the idea of benevolent behaviour towards the good and the evil the sun rises a natural process and rain comes a blessing to all. Are we, can we, make prayer a natural process, as inherent say as breathing? Easily said than done?

A language note ἀνατέλλει is one of those verbs which has a double ll in the present and a single elsewhere and is to related to ἀνατολη, the east, the direction of the sun rise and hence the origin of Anatolia, the area we know call Turkey.

46. if for you love those who love why why reward has? No indedd and the tax collections the selfsame thing do?

It's easy to love those who love back but even the reviled tax collectors could do that.

Telooonai were what we might currently call independent contractors. They collected various revenues taxes fees and data for assessing taxes for the Roman Empire but it was an outsourced role. They were not actually government employes or civil servants and since they earnt their profit as part of the tax … the role was open to corruption. Not a popular job!

47 and if you salute / greet respectfully your brothers and kin only what / how is (that) better no indeed the Nations (Gentiles used the way a Roman or Greek meant use barbarian) the same thing do!

Perhaps you have had the experience of making someone who's a perfect gentleman at home but a hoon or a thug to their neighbours or any one who's not a close relative?

Its not just enough to love your relatives or neighbours we are called on to love more widely.

48. you are to become therefore perfect as / like god is

τελειος isn't an end state its a process of achieving and maintaining a state of entireness completion fullness. It may be an end state but also a process. Why do I stress this. Consider the Greek perfect tense and which word the Greek grammarians used to describe it. Process leads to results.

Transcending hate is hard work but brings us closer to the divine?

Time for prayer.

Wednesday, 28 May 2014

The Ai Khanum Satyr a further note

Not seen Hidden treasures from Afghanistan yet?

Something blurbs online elsewhere havn't made clear and that is not clear in the photograph. This was actually some kind of spout for rain water probably? The artisan very cleverly and beautifully has made use of the satyr motif to create a useful object that is also a sculpture and an ornament.

I know its also described as the kitchen servant the old man and other descriptions but take a look at this ... at the head.

Hidden treasures closes June 15 See it if you can!

Saturday, 24 May 2014

Myrtiotissa Quote

Double post this sunday since I didn't have time to post Wednesday!

This is the first stanza of a longer poem.

from Page 578 of the Penguin Book of Greek Verse
Ed. C. A. Trypanis 1971 paperback edition


Σ'ἀγαπῶ. Δὲν μπορῶ
τίποτ' ἄλλο νὰ πῶ
πιὸ βαθύ, πιὸ ἁπλό,
πιὸ μεγάλο !

You I love nothing I can say other than (that)
more deeper simpler greater

apart from the opening stanza of a beautiful modern Greek poem this also how some words havn't changed over 3000 years yet others have. Note νὰ and πιὸ yet the very recognisable ἀγαπῶ and βαθύ.

If you want to get an idea of Greek language as a continuum acquire and read this anthology whether you're a student of modern byzantine classical or biblical greek.

Matthew 5: 42

τῷ αἰτοῦντί σε δός

To those who ask you GIVE!

My favorite part of last week's study.

Saturday, 17 May 2014

Matthew Giving as much and more than due

Matthew 5: 38 – 42 GIVE (See also Luke 6: 27 - 36)

Verse 38
Jesus begins by quoting a the eye for an eye, tooth for a tooth concept from the Old testament (Exodus 21: 24, Lev. 24: 20, Deut. 19: 21)

But then he tells us to go beyond this and give!

39 I but say to you plural Do not STAND AGAINST EVIL μὴ ἀντιστῆναι τῷ πονηρ!

This is usually translated in to English as resist though it literally means stand against and is also an excellent example of an Aorist Infinitive used as an Imperative Command like several other verbs in this section.

But whoever you accusative strikes onto, εἰς means onto or on here, note accusative of motion, the right cheek, turn στρέψον an Aorist Imperative, to him / her, read καὶ as also, the other cheek.

40 and he who wishes or wants from you to have after a judgement your tunic taken let him also take the cloak.

Note the evils he speaks of resisting are minor and seem petty to us. Bear in mind he spoke at a time when one or two tunics and an cape or cloak as an over garment might be a person's only clothes. The tunic taken might be your other best embroidered linen kept for special occassions and hence a valuable item that could be sold to pay a debt.

Note κριθῆναι an Aorist Passive Infinitive

41 Jesus then applies this to a law stating Roman soldier could force ἀγγαρεύσει civilians to carry their packs for a mile or so. He asks his listeners not to carry the pack for just one mile but two!
We should fulfil our civil and legal obligations to the fullest extent and generously.

42. Finally, and check Luke 6: 27 – 36 for a parallel verse, he states to him or her who asks you GIVE δός and those wishing from you to make a loan / middle so borrow from you not turn away / refuse. Δανίζω and ἀποστρεφω.

Read this and then the next linked following section about loving enemies.

It is not enough to give and love when it is easy. Jesus challenges us here.

May the Divine have mercy onto all us sinners who fall short of this and other challenges.

Wednesday, 14 May 2014

Art Deco Athena

Classical greek art influences appear on many types of building.

If your town or city has buildings dating to the 1920s - early 40s look up and see if there are any decorative reliefs or pediments such as this one of Athena . 

Saturday, 10 May 2014

Vows and Oaths

Oaths Vows and Promises Matthew 5: 33 – 37

Word for word …

“ Again you have heard that it was said to the ancients

Not you swear falsely / break an oath give back but / rather to the Lord (what you promised) the vows of you ….

(See Lev 19:12 Numbers 30:2 and Deut. 19:21 )

I but say to you (plural) not to swear / vow wholly (translate holoos as at all entirely completely neither (by what is ) in the heaven that the throne is of god nor by the earth that footstool is of the feet his nor (by what is in) Jerusalem that city is of great king nor by your head shall you swear that not being able one hair white or black to make let be but the word of yours Yes Yes (or) No No what but more (than) these things out of evil is.

Note in Greek the Dative Agent and the command not swear vows and sacred oaths by heaven earth the Holy City or your own head or self.

Hoti could and has been translated as because instead of that here is it is being used to link a string of clauses rather than indirect statements

To make an oath is to declare a contract to do something.

Better to simply say you will or will not do something.

Epiorkeeseis to break an oath horkos a masculine noun apodooseis give back pay return

note also two forms of the verb omnuoo promise vow swear aorist infinitive omosai and omoseeis

more here is not mallon but perisson which can have the sense of going OVER a limit.

Excuse me not typing the Greek but this blog is behind schedule due to me breaking my right arm and while I can type with one finger and my left hand I'm still getting some pain from the arm.

See the post before or after this How to support metousia !  

Why you should support METOUSIA and How

I'm BACK I had to take about a months break cos I had a broken right arm and while I am left handed well one handed typing increases error rates and then there was the distraction of pain swelling bruises the cast muscle aches etc

anyway I now am still out of work have medical bills to pay and have to job hunt due to a cut in hours in my one remaining casual role

readers if you're worse off than me or don't like using paypal please at least share these posts on social media or suggest a different tip jar or something?

We have Medicare in Australia but I had to go to a orthopaedic specialist to check if the fracture needed metal pins or surgery and while happily it didn't those consultations added to my bills since he follows a different fee schedule and has his clinics outside the public hospital system.