Saturday, 26 July 2014

Pray for peace

#blessedarethepeacemakers #pray for peace #gaza #israel #syria #ukraine

Yes I blogged on this verse before but given this week's events we all need the reminder.

Matthew Chapter 5 Verse 9

Blessed are the peacemakers

μακάριοι οἱ εἰρηνοποιοὶ

Not the online warriors and hatemongers endlessly apologizing or justifying violence.

Spare a thought and prayers for paramedics doctors patients nurse parents and civilians in war zones!

Friday, 25 July 2014

Greek Verb Key One


μαι σαι ται



For most verbs

Μαι becomes ω or plural μεν or μεθα

S becomes ες or Vowel plus ς or ς to τ
so we have ετε or εται in plurals

T becomes ε or ον or plural ονται or ουσι(ν)

Saturday, 19 July 2014

Greek AORIST IMPERATIVE a useful link

One of the reasons you should be aware  of when Greek is using the Aorist Imperative or Subjunctive is that Aorist Imperative means its a one and only action to be completed.

You don't have to to take my word only for it.

Check out this site

You might want to also  check out the TEXTKIT site and do a general Google search?

No new translation this week!

I need to catch up on prepping new material for next week!

Saturday, 12 July 2014


HOW TO PRAY like THIS according to 

Matthew 6: 9 - 13

So like this you pray

father ours who in the heavens (is)
make holy the name you
let come the realm of you
let become the will of you
as in the heaven and (also) upon earth

the bread for us necessary for this day give to us this day
and let go release us the debts of us
as and we release the debts of those who owe us
and not lead us into testing
but deliver us away from evil /wretchedness/being in a bad condition / place.

Note again the AORIST IMPERATIVES a verb form we don't have in ENGLISH!

We are not merely wishing or approving but asking that God's name be made holy,
that the realm of god comes, let the divine will happen,
that we have our daily essential needs, NOT luxuries,
and that if we want our debt of sin forgiven we likewise must forgive others.

This is further emphasized by verse 14.
The word used for sin is literally a falling or flying away!

Sin separates us from the Divine. Forgiveness is an action.
But not just our sins others too.
We must be concerned about others not just ourselves.

Don't bargain with God, pray for what is right and good to happen?

A short note on formatting. Since I don't know if you're reading this on a desktop monitor, a laptop, a PC Windows tablet, an Ipad or mobile. I sometimes move long clauses and sentences onto new lines. I hope that helps if you have a small screen?  

There are things that help apart from prayer.

My budget and savings account are covering the food and utility bills so far but I'm between jobs at the amount so a little support would be appreciated. If you're doing better than me money wise and have found any of the info or insights into Greek in this blog helpful ... paypal tip jar top right ? It would be both good and helpful if I finally earned enuff from Adsense or Paypal to least cover my wifi broadband costs ? 

Friday, 11 July 2014

The Good Shepherd

The Good Shepherd motif seems to be another borrowed from pagan art and adapted for Early Christian use.

While Hermes is usually shown as a herald or messenger he is also sometimes depicted carrying rams or sheep. Remember he was originally Arcadian?

Here's a Roman era painting from a CHRISTIAN TOMB.

We have to acknowledge our classical heritage.

Sunday, 6 July 2014


(running a bit late with this post sorry!) 

Stammer speak

Matthew 6: 7-8

This is another of those verses of which EVERY translation differs.

Here's a word for word translation:

(when or while cos present participle) Praying and not STAMMERSPEAK (N.B. Aor. Subj.)
like the pagans they seem to think for that in a manyword of them they will be heeded.

Not therefore make similar to them

knows for the father of yours what need you have before of the (need?) you to ask him.

This verse is often used to criticize the devotional practise of repeated prayers and mantras and similar spiritual tools by Catholics Hindus Orthodox and Buddhist. More about that in a moment.

When praying do not stammerspeak. This usually gets translated as empty prayers or vain repetitions as the KJV phrases it but the verb literally means stammerspeak!

We know from Aristophanes and Attic dramas that invocations of gods included repeting names and syllables. Io! Io! Etc.Why say stammer speak? Was it a popular insult directed towards Pagans by Jews of that time?

Were some jews using prayers that involved repeating epiphets of the divine?

Perhaps the point is not simply that repetitions are wrong but meaningless repetitions.

The Jesus Prayer devotional practise involving repeating one short prayer over and over again and has been discouraged by some writers and lauded by others.

The point of such repetitions is not to earn karma or reduce anxiety or reach a meditative state but to achieve communion with the Divine by placing yourself in a receptive state. But if you don't really focus on the divine on the intent of your prayer it can become merely a kind of autohypnosis.

Jesus next saids like the nations the ethnikoi the pagans and note he uses eisakouoo not just hear but listen or hearken … they seem to think dokeoo they fut pass form they will be heeded … greek in manywords perhaps should be by speaking many words over and over again.

The repetitions become an error if you think the repetition is more important than the purpose.

Do not make yourself like them. Or pray because you need something?

God knows your needs before you ask. A relationship with the Divine like many human relationships should not be based solely on need.

The next section is the Lord's prayer and we'll leave that for next week!

Thursday, 3 July 2014

More on the History of Halos From Sun God to Saviour.

I've show you on a previous post images that suggest rayed halos derive from Hellenistic art. There is one depiction of Apollo in a Roman mosaic from North Africa that is similar though to the cross halo found in later Byzantine art.

Note there are seven rays within a flat circle.
 I suspect the use by romans of circles to outline images within mosaics may have contributed to the development of halos.

Now some Byzantine mosaics show Christ with a halo with 3 rays but these date to several centuries later so it is possible they are an independent development?

Here's one of them from the Hagia Sophia :

So rayed halos worn by Hellenistic Sun gods and Kings ! (See prior post)

But how direct was the influence on Christian and Byzantine art?

The earliest depictions of Christ usually use the Good Shepherd image but there is this Roman wall painting ...

Its as much a circle as a halo and may have been used more to emphasize that this figure is Christ?

Finally a classic 4th century Byzantine mosaic :

By the way this one was "restored" in the 19th century so possibly the  colors have been altered.

My point is Christian halos differ from Pagan solar halos and while those artists probably saw pagan sun god images the earliest halos was more usually flat.
Those rayed halos you see in Rocco and Baroque devotional art?
A much later borrowing!

There is a continuum from pagan to byzantine art but its one of continuous development inspired by classical ideas to create new forms.