Saturday, 30 July 2016

Jesus to the Young Rich MAN

#biblestudy #gospel #greeknewtestament

Matthew 19: 21-22

so the rich kid claims I keep the commandments !

jesus' response translated word by word from the greek new testament

If you wish complete/perfect to be go away sell your property/possessions and give to the poor and you will have treasure in heaven(s) and come here follow me.

Now this young man according to verse 22  "was for having possessions many"

he was wealthy probably in a variety of ways coins jewels land

but he wanted teleios to be complete whole perfect

note jesus didn't mention the do not covet commandment so he didn't sense greed was this man's problem?

Perhaps he was only "loving" his nearest family and friends and neighbours who were all as wealthy as him?

Note Jesus didn't say sell ALL your worldly goods or discard all your wealth.

He encouraged the young man to sell things he didn't need and use the money to help those who really needed help and then to follow him if he wanted to learn more about spiritual treasure.

Perhaps this young man had simply expected to have a theology / philosophy debate and get praised for his virtue but jesus told him to do more.

Are we doing enough too?

Friday, 29 July 2016

GrecoRoman sphinx

#grecoroman #sphinx #sculpture

This one dates to the Roman era but the Sculptor could have been Greek Roman or from anywhere in the Roman empire. It is thought to have been part of some part of furnishing a table or chair. 

NO crown or tiara on this one and the paws legs and wings are far less stylised.

I hope you've enjoyed the #sphinx series.

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Tuesday, 26 July 2016

Hellenistic Era Sphinx and Oedipus

#sphinx #oedipus #vase #greekart

In the #Hellenistic period there were a shift back to using white slip as a background for paintings on ceramic vessels.

Images were created using something like tempera and added after firing so many of this type of ceramics have faded colors however you still still make out traces of blue gray on the wing feathers of this piece.

Saturday, 23 July 2016



Matthew 19:16-19

so a young man comes up to jesus and asks

What good will I do so that I will have life eternal?

Jesus reply

Why me you ask about the good?
one is the good
if and you wish into the life to enter observe the commandments

the young man asks WHICH?

Jesus does not recite all ten but note what he does do.

VERBS are used. ACTION is emphasized.

The verb I translated as observe teereoo also means watch and guard  so what follows are things to avoid and things to do.

As I'm going to discuss that in further detail next week I want to return to the question WHAT IS GOOD?

Later theologians spun Jesus' statement that the One is Good into a point of agreement with Platonic Philosophy GOD IS GOOD

but how do we become part of that Eternal Goodness, enter the Good Life?


This is something All religions and Many philosophies agree on.

Do good. Avoid Evil. Don't just talk about it.

Before next week read down to Verse 22.
Jesus keeps getting us to think about practical actions we can take.


If you follow me on Twitter or FB you may have noticed I'm somewhat distracted by #SDCC and the new Star Trek movie.

Do consider how you can do good things
without donning a superhero costume or joining Star Fleet!
Oh and you do happen to do cosplay consider using it
to help raise money for local charities!

Friday, 22 July 2016

Yet another Sphinx Sculpture.

#sphinx #sculpture #classicalgreekart

This one is from Cyprus. The "pinks" are faded reds and possibly other weaker pigments may have eroded off.

Tomorrow is greek new testament bible study day but next week I still have a few more Sphinx images to share before we move to a new topic.

Don't forget to check out older posts on this theme and ...

please consider 

Thank You 

Tuesday, 19 July 2016

A Sphinx in a Late Classical Mosaic

This #mosiac comes from a house in #Etretria

#sphinx #greekart

the pavement also features griffins a seahorse and  lions
note the restrained use of colour in comparison to the wider colour range in Hellenistic and Roman mosaics.

Saturday, 16 July 2016

Let the children ...

#greeknewtestament #biblestudy #whatjesussaid

Matthew 19:14 is todays topic.

Rereading this verse in two or three translations I actually found the KJV to be closer to the Greek than the RSV. However be re-assured changing is to belongs does not vastly alter the meaning.

Here's the Greek transliterated

the and jesus said
let the children and not you plural hinder kooluete  them to come towards me
they for of such condition / nature / quality note the greek is  toioutoon
is the realm of the heavens. is + estin here!

KJV has Suffer little children and forbid them not to come unto me
for of such is the kingdom of heaven
RSV Let the children come to me and do not hinder them
for to such belongs the kingdom of heaven

So why belongs in some English translations?

Toioutoon refers back to the children whose parents sought Jesus' blessings and prayers so the verb links the children to heaven.

This simple verse can be read as calling on us to seek blessings and to protect children or that children are innocents free of sin or simply Jesus scolding the disciples for being over protective.

For further insight I suggest you go and reread the beginning of Chapter 18 and compare that to 19:13-15.

Friday, 15 July 2016

Sphinxes on Greek Ceramics

#sphinx #greekceramics #sphinxes

4 examples in roughly chronological order of sphinxes depicted on Greek ceramic

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Tuesday, 12 July 2016

More Egyptian and Phoenician Sphinxes

#sphinx #egyptianart #phoenicianart

Having shown you the Delphi #Sphinx last time I want to show you more Egyptian and Phoenician pieces so you can see the interplay and connections between the different but related styles and models for Greek Sphinxes, Archaic or Classical and later.

2 Egyptian pieces 
the top one is ivory and part of a chariot horse's head harness a blinker 
 the bottom an amulet or maybe the Egyptian equivalent of an ornamental piece of bricbrac?

Now for 2 Phoenician / Syrian / Near East works.

Those wings probably had inlay of glass or jewels once.

Metal was also used. 

So Greek travellers and traders to Egypt Assyria Phoenicia and the Near East were seeing and bringing home objects like this as models for.

Next time Some more Greek interpretations of the Sphinx motif.

Saturday, 9 July 2016

The Delphi Sphinx


This Archaic era #greek #sculpture was created on the island of #naxos and originally placed on a high column in the temple precinct .

It is perhaps less ornate than Egyptian and Phoenician sphinxes though the body is more feline than leonine?

Bear in mind in its original location outdoors people would have been seeing this work from below or above and a distance.

Next time I compare Archaic sphinxes with more Egyptian and Phoenician models.


#Matthew #chapter 19 #divorce #biblestudy #greeknewtestament

The Gospel of Matthew Chapter 19 Verses 1 - 9 discusses divorce.

I often see these verses used to advise advising women to stay in abusive situations or to argue against same sex marriage but however you read and use these verses please reconsider verse 8.

The key word in this section may be



Jesus's response to the Pharisees draws attention to male hypocrisy.

Moses for the hardheartedness of you permitted for you to release the women of you from beginning but not happened so ...

and note what he says in 9

whoever releases the women of him not for sexual immorality and marries another he is adulterous.

Men were divorcing women for barrenness or ill health or other reasons and claiming there was improper behaviour on the wife's part.

Yes some versions have extra phrases that ban remarriage but again notice the word hardheartedness?

Jesus describes it as a cause.

If a man is so hardhearted he physically or verbally or in other ways abuses or neglects his wife then surely this is also a valid cause for divorce?

Yes too fond the wife gets the blame and people presume adultery.

I think Jesus calls on us to think about this carefully

Note the final words of verse 12

he who is able to hold it let him hold it!

Khorew means make room accept practise hold contain .

Going bakc to the Pharisees original question

divorce for any cause kata pasan aitian

What causes adultery and divorce?

Consider hardheartedness as a cause?

Tuesday, 5 July 2016



#sphinx #greekart #ceramics #sculpture

It is a curious feature of Greek art that the creature with a male head and lion's body becomes female and acquires a body more like that of a cheetah or cat in Greek Art.

We do not know if early Greek visitors to Naucratis or Memphis or Thebes actually saw the Sphinx at Giza or Sphinx figures at temples. It is perhaps more likely the first images Greeks saw of Sphinx were Phoenician ivories like this?

This one is male but the beardless face along with the legend of a female sphinx at Thebes plus the arrival of the first domestic cats lead to images like this:

On this Archaic era vessel the sphinxes appear alongside lions and a feline that may be a leopard or cheetah plus other animals.

Next time the Sphinx of Delphi !

Saturday, 2 July 2016

Beatitudes Revisited

#beatitudes #greek #greeknewtestament #gospelogmatthew #biblestudy

Since I've reached the end of a chapter time for some review and visit to #Matthew Chapter 5 - Beatitudes 5: 3 - 10

My literal translation from the greek will be followed by a few notes

Blessed the poor (in implied by dative) spirit
that of/for them is the realm of the heavens

Poor in spirit = the depressed? those not spiritually gifts ? Both?!

blessed those who are mourning / sorrowful
that they will be comforted / supported

by the holy spirit is how many read this verse due to the verb used being related to the greek noun ParaKlete holy spirit as advocate / supporter

blessed the gentle/humble /meek
that they will inherit the earth

NOT the weak but those who have praus

blessed those who hunger and thirst for righteousness
that they will be satisfied filled/ fed

blessed the merciful / compassionate
that they will receive mercy

blessed the pure in / of heart
that they the god will see

blessed the peacemakers
that they sons of god will be called

blessed those who are hunted for the sake / cause of righteousness/justice
that for them is the realm of the heavens

Note the contrast more obvious in Greek between Active and Passive

those who have or endure or practise certain conditions or virtues or both
are those who will receive or get a response and a blessing.

We had a federal election yesterday in australia and the votes are still being tallied.

Let us hope the winners are both politicians and ordinary people who may be feeling wretched or sad or humiliated right now but hopefully will be blessed for being seekers for justice and righteousness merciful and peacemakers?

Let us hope for blessings anyway!