Greek: ἄλλη δόξα ἡλίου, καὶ ἄλλη δόξα σελήνης, καὶ ἄλλη δόξα ἀστέρων, ἀστὴρ γὰρ ἀστέρος διαφέρει ἐν δόξῃ. (WH)
Rogers and Rogers:
ESV: "There is one glory of the sun, and another glory of the moon, and another glory of the stars; for star differs from star in glory."
NWT 2013: "The glory of the sun is one sort, and the glory of the moon is another, and the glory of the stars is another; in fact, one star differs from another star in glory."
NET: "There is one glory of the sun, and another glory of the moon and another glory of the stars, for star differs from star in glory."
David Garland (BECNT): Mentioning the stars might be intended to bring to mind the glorious state of those resurrected from the dead, who are likened to astral bodies (Dan. 12:2–3; Matt. 13:43; Wis. 3:7; 2 Bar. 51:10; so D. Martin 1995: 118–20). Paul’s point is that the resurrection body is not a reanimated corpse but something of a completely different order that is appropriate to celestial existence. Since the Corinthians recognize that heavenly bodies differ from earthly bodies, they should not expect the resurrected body to be a recycled earthly body.
EGF: The discussion by Anthony Thiselton in his 1 Corinthians commentary merits reading: both he and Garland present some refined points about 1 Cor. 15:41, but hardly anyone I've read says much about Greek astronomy when commenting on the expression, "star differs from star in glory." I sometimes wonder how much Paul knew about ancient Greek astronomy and figures like Aristarchus or Ptolemy. The work of classifying stars according to their magnitude was already under way in antiquity: that is one reason I find Aristarchus to be such a compelling figure.
The works I consulted also point out that 1 Corinthians 15:39-41 likely draws upon Genesis 1. Moreover, notice the syntactical order in verse 41, how Paul goes from sun to moon to stars, and the repeated occurrence of the adjective "one/one sort" or "another."
A.T. Robertson: "The telescope has added more force to Paul's argument."
Sunday, February 28, 2021
Greek: ἄλλη δόξα ἡλίου, καὶ ἄλλη δόξα σελήνης, καὶ ἄλλη δόξα ἀστέρων, ἀστὴρ γὰρ ἀστέρος διαφέρει ἐν δόξῃ. (WH)
Saturday, February 27, 2021
John N. Oswalt (NICOT): The one element here that is not present in 11:6-9 is the snake [will eat]2055 dust for its bread. Some commentators (e.g., Westermann, Whybray) believe that it has been intentionally added because this passage is speaking about the new creation. That is, it is an allusion to Gen. 3. All the sources of weeping that have been detailed in vv. 20-25 are ultimately the result of the snake’s interference in Eden. There God announced that the snake would crawl in the dust forever, and that although he would bite the heel of Eve’s child, that child would crush the snake’s head (Gen. 3:15). Here the snake is finally condemned not only to crawl in the dust but to eat only dust forevermore. When that happens, the curse will be truly broken, and as the Lord says, there will be none to hurt or destroy in all his holy mountain. May God grant it.
Jewish Study Bible (JPS): The wolf and the lamb shall graze together, And the lion shall eat straw like the ox, And the serpent's food shall be earth. In all My sacred mount Nothing evil or vile shall be done-said the LORD
Keil-Delitzsch: We have frequently observed within chapters 40-66 (last of all at Isaiah 65:12, cf., Isaiah 66:4), how the prophet repeats entire passages from the earlier portion of his prophecies almost word for word. Here he repeats Isaiah 11:6-9 with a compendious abridgment. Isaiah 65:25 refers to the animals just as it does there. But whilst this custom of self-repetition favours the unity of authorship, כּאחד for יחדּו equals unâ, which only occurs elsewhere in Ezra and Ecclesiastes (answering to the Chaldee כּחדה), might be adduced as evidence of the opposite. The only thing that is new in the picture as here reproduced, is what is said of the serpent. This will no longer watch for human life, but will content itself with the food assigned it in Genesis 3:14. It still continues to wriggle in the dust, but without doing injury to man. The words affirm nothing more than this, although Stier's method of exposition gets more out, or rather puts more in. The assertion of those who regard the prophet speaking here as one later than Isaiah, viz., that Isaiah 65:25 is only attached quite loosely to what precedes, is unjust and untrue. The description of the new age closes here, as in chapter 11, with the peace of the world of nature, which stands throughout chapters 40-66 in the closest reciprocal relation to man, just as it did in chapters 1-39.
NET Bible: A wolf and a lamb will graze together;[a] a lion, like an ox, will eat straw,[b] and a snake’s food will be dirt.[c] They will no longer injure or destroy on my entire royal mountain,”[d] says the Lord.
Note c in NET Bible: Isaiah 65:25 sn Some see an allusion to Gen 3:14 (note “you will eat dirt”). The point would be that even in this new era the snake (often taken as a symbol of Satan) remains under God’s curse. However, it is unlikely that such an allusion exists. Even if there is an echo of Gen 3:14, the primary allusion is to 11:8, where snakes are pictured as no longer dangerous. They will no longer attack other living creatures, but will be content to crawl along the ground. (The statement “you will eat dirt” in Gen 3:14 means “you will crawl on the ground.” In the same way the statement “dirt will be its food” in Isa 65:25 means “it will crawl on the ground.”)
John Goldingay (Understanding the Bible Commentary Series): Verse 25 identifies this vision with that in 11:6–9. It also adds the somber line based on Genesis 3:14, but dust will be the serpent’s food. This surprising comment implies that, for all the vision of new creation, the factors that led to the original human act of uncreation have not been re- moved. It seems odd that there was present in God’s good creation a creature who encouraged humanity to do other than God said. In parallel, it seems odd that this creature should also be present in the renewed Jerusalem. Perhaps the implication is that such life is no more designed to be challenge-free than life in Eden was. But here, more clearly than in Genesis 3:14–15, the description concludes with a promise that the serpent’s action will not spoil things (v. 25b). When we set the passage in a broader biblical context, that reference to the serpent also draws our attention to the fact that long, full, ordinary earthly life is designed to be continued as, or succeeded by, or transformed into, eternal life.
Monday, February 22, 2021
How should the Greek word μακάριος be translate in Matthew 5:3? Should it be rendered "happy" or "blessed"?
Latin Vulgate: beati pauperes spiritu quoniam ipsorum est regnum caelorum
Weymouth NT: "Blessed are the poor in spirit, for to them belongs the Kingdom of the Heavens."
Young's LT: "Happy the poor in spirit -- because theirs is the reign of the heavens."
Moffatt's NT: "Blessed are those who feel poor in spirit! the Realm of heaven is theirs."
David Bentley Hart NT: “How blissful the destitute, abject in spirit, for theirs is the
Kingdom of the heavens;"
Bentley Hart Footnote: μακάριος (makarios): “blessed,” “happy,” “fortunate,” “prosperous,” but originally with a connotation of divine or heavenly bliss.
David Turner (BECNT): The word “beatitude” is related to the Latin beatus, which means “blessed.” To be blessed (μακάριος, makarios) is to receive God’s approval, favor, endorsement, congratulations. To be “blessed” is to be so much more than “happy,” since the word “happiness” conveys only a subjective, shallow notion of serendipity, not the conviction of being a recipient of God’s grace. God initiates blessing by graciously condescending to save people. They respond to God’s initiative by blessing God with praise and obedient living. Their present experience of God’s reign in Jesus motivates them to live in light of its future intensification (6:10). The pattern of the Beatitudes is to highlight the character of the blessed person and then to explain the promise of God to such a person.
Louw-Nida defines μακάριος as “pertaining to being happy, with the implication of enjoying favorable circumstances—‘happy.’”
BDAG: μακάριος, ία, ιον (Pind., Pla., X.+; inscr., pap., LXX, En., Philo, Joseph.) blessed, fortunate, happy, usu. in the sense privileged recipient of divine favor.
μακάριος occurs around 50x in the GNT.
LXX Occurences: https://www.blueletterbible.org/lang/lexicon/inflections.cfm?strongs=G3107&t=LXX&ot=LXX&word=%CE%BC%CE%B1%CE%BA%E1%BD%B1%CF%81%CE%B9%CE%BF%CF%82
See Psalm 41:1; 128:1 (LXX); 1 Timothy 1:11; Titus 2:11-14.
Saturday, February 20, 2021
Friday, February 19, 2021
One appealing quality of Jehovah is his generosity, and generosity is a quality that God loves in his worshipers. 2 Corinthians 9:7 exclaims that God loves a cheerful giver, but some church members may feel compelled to give beyond their means. Some churches teach that God requires a set amount of money for contributions: this practice is known as tithing, which means giving 10 percent of one's money as a contribution or offering. Does God require a set amount for a contribution? Exactly how much should we donate?
When Jehovah dealt with the nation of Israel, he clearly instructed them about how much they should give to sustain the tabernacle and later, the temple. According to Leviticus 27:30, "every tenth part of the land" belonged to Jehovah. Since Israel was an agricultural nation, much of their tithing consisted of produce from the land. In return, Jehovah promised he would make the nation ‘overflow with prosperity.’ See Malachi 3:10.
In other instances, God's servants could give little or plenty, depending on their circumstances. For example, when King David planned to build a temple for Jehovah, his subjects donated “gold worth five thousand talents.” That amount today would be equivalent to almost 5 billion dollars. On the other hand, in Luke 21:1-4, Jesus told about a widow, who contributed 2 coins of little value: her donation was only 1/64 of a day's wages. Yet Jesus praised this woman's generosity.
What about Christians? Are we required to give a set amount today for contributions? While giving is a great source of joy for Christians, since we're not under the Mosaic Law, God's people are no longer obligated to tithe or give 10 percent contributions. If we turn to 2 Corinthians 9:7, we'll see why a set amount is no longer required.
[After reading verse]
Paul pointed out that a Christian should give what he's resolved in his heart. Why? Because God loves a cheerful giver. This is why Jehovah's Witnesses offer voluntary contributions to support the worldwide preaching work. While some Witnesses might get help defraying their expenses or to assist with their ministry, most of us work to supply our needs in order to avoid becoming a burden to others. By doing these things, we imitate Jehovah, our generous heavenly Father (Acts 20:35; Ephesians 5:1; James 1:17).
Monday, February 15, 2021
Saturday, February 13, 2021
Greek (WH): οὐ πιστεύεις ὅτι ἐγὼ ἐν τῷ πατρὶ καὶ ὁ πατὴρ ἐν ἐμοί ἐστιν; τὰ ῥήματα ἃ ἐγὼ λέγω ὑμῖν ἀπ' ἐμαυτοῦ οὐ λαλῶ· ὁ δὲ πατὴρ ἐν ἐμοὶ μένων ποιεῖ τὰ ἔργα αὐτοῦ.
According to this verse, Jesus could do powerful works because he was "in the Father" and the Father was in him.
NWT 2013: "
Friday, February 12, 2021
Greek: καὶ πᾶν κατάθεμα οὐκ ἔσται ἔτι. καὶ ὁ θρόνος τοῦ θεοῦ καὶ τοῦ ἀρνίου ἐν αὐτῇ ἔσται, καὶ οἱ δοῦλοι αὐτοῦ λατρεύσουσιν αὐτῷ,
On page 555 of his Revelation commentary, Buist Fanning understands the referent of the singular datival pronoun αὐτῷ to be God: he points to Revelation 7:15 as support for this view. Fanning's position makes more sense to me than those who want to posit the two persons/one pronoun view. Fanning still thinks that Christ is God and worthy of worship based on Revelation 5:9-14, but he maintains that the singular pronoun in 22:3 refers to God rather than Christ.
Similarly, David Aune writes that the singular pronoun in Revelation may refer to a) God; b) Christ;
c) less likely, to both God and Christ.
Compare Revelation 3:21.
Monday, February 08, 2021
The Greek tragedian Sophocles waxed eloquent about the wondrous nature of humanity in the tragic play, Antigone:
"And speech, and wind-swift thought, and all the moods that mould a state, hath he [i.e., man] taught himself; and how to flee the arrows of the frost, when 'tis hard lodging under the clear sky, and the arrows of the rushing rain; yea, he hath resource for all; without resource he meets nothing that must come: only against Death shall he call for aid in vain; but from baffling maladies he hath devised escapes" (lines 332-340).
King David likewise spoke of humanity's wondrous nature, but he lauded Jehovah God while articulating human wonder: "I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; that I know very well." (Psalm 139:14 NRSV).
Concerning the Hebrew terminology rendered "Wonderful" above, Gesenius has the following:
to be wonderful, Psalms 118:23, 139:14. Pl. f. as a substantive נִפְלָאוֹת things done wonderfully, miracles of God, both in creating and sustaining the world, Psalms 9:2, 26:7 40:6 and in affording aid to his people, Exodus 34:10; Joshua 3:5. It also takes adjectives, as, נִפְלָאוֹת גְּדוֹלוֹת Psalms 136:4. Adv. נִפְלָאוֹת wonderfully, Job 37:5. Daniel 8:24. (Hebrew and Chaldee Lexicon)Th. Booij offers these remarks on Psalm 139:14:
The participle niplaim ("wonderful") nicely links up with nipleti, being related to it formally and semantically. That YHWH's works are wonderful is demonstrated in the speaker himself. It is a notion that thoroughly pervades him: "my soul knows right well."Out of all the things that make humanity "wondrous/wonderful," one thing is the human brain. From the activity of our dendrites and synapses to our capacity for language and memory, the brain is one reason that we can laud the work of God's creative hand: the brain has been compared to a universe within our heads. For example:
"The human brain boasts an estimated 100 billion nerve cells, or neurons, each of which may connect to up to 10,000 other neurons (although not all do). If you could count all those contacts, one per second, you'd need just over 31 trillion years to finish the job."See https://scopeblog.stanford.edu/2018/12/12/computer-memory-a-scientific-team-builds-a-virtual-model-of-a-key-brain-region/
Another article states:
"Your brain has the capacity to retain 4.7 billion books, scientists have discovered, or ten times the number originally thought. On average, one synapse can hold roughly 4.7 bits of information, which means that the human brain can hold one petabyte (1,000,000,000,000,000 bytes)."
Hence, our brain is a grand old place located within a tiny space.
Sources for Further Reading:
Th. Booij, "
Collins, C. John, "Psalm 139:14 - 'Fearfully and Wonderfully Made?' " Presbyterion, 1999.