Carl W. Conrad cwconrad at
Thu Aug 10 20:58:03 EDT 2000

At 11:19 AM -0500 8/10/00, Rick H Duggin wrote:
>In advance, I apologize for the length of this question.
>Someone asked me about YEUDOS when it functions
>as an adjective in YEUDODIDASKALOS.
>BAG says that YEUDADELFOS refers to one who
>pretends to be a Christian brother...
>YEUDAPOSTOLOS is one who represents himself to be
>an apostle without the divine commission necessary for the
>YEUDOLOGOS is one who speaks falsely, lying...
>YEUDOMARTUREW is the act of giving false testimony...
>YEUDOMARTUS is one who gives false testimony...
>YEUDOPROFHTHS is one who falsely claims to be a
>prophet of God or who prophesies falsely...
>YEUDOCRISTOS is one who, in lying fashion, gives
>himself out to be the Christ...
>YEUDWNUMOS is falsely bearing a name...
>YEUDOS means lie or falsehood.
>YEUDODIDASKALOS is a false teacher, prob.
>one who teaches falsehoods, 2 Pt.2:1.
>1. Since the NT usage unanimously appears to
>imply a lack of sincerity on the part of one who
>is YEUDO[something], is it legitimate to assume
>that the YEUDODIDASKALOS is insincere-- one
>who cannot be sincerely mistaken in his teaching?
>In otherwords, may/must we assume that the
>YEUDODIDASKALOS is a liar (i.e., one with an
>evil motive)?
>2. Or, is this something that cannot be decided by
>the customary use of the adjective in the NT, but
>must be decided entirely on the basis of its context
>in 2 Pt.2:1?

I do not disagree with Maurice O'Sullivan's response to this question in
the least, but I'd like to add a qualification, perhaps one that many would
disagree with. When the prefix YEUD- or YEUDO- is used, I think the
emphasis is generally on the falsity or untrustworthiness of the way a
person or thing appears rather than on the deliberate intent of the person
(or thing?) to deceive. In several instances the intent to deceive may also
be involved, as with YEUDOMARTUREW. I'd be a bit more careful about an
assumption that a YEUDODIDASKALOS is insincere; I've encountered more
individuals than I like to think of who are teaching things about Greek
(and other matters as well?) that I am quite sure are false, but I would
not accuse them of deliberately teaching what they know to be false.
Personally I think it's best not to attempt to analyze the motives of
persons who teach or perform in ways we believe to be inauthentic: we
assess the authenticity of their teaching or action as best we can, and if
we believe there is a dangerous inauthenticity, we take steps to combat
that teaching or behavior.

I would suggest therefore that, one ought less to suppose that one
characterized as YEUD- or YEUDO- necessarily lacks sincerity, but rather
one ought to emphasize that such a person or thing lacks integrity or
authenticity or veracity.

Others might prefer, I realize, to assess all such words in terms of black
and white.


Carl W. Conrad
Department of Classics, Washington University
Summer: 1647 Grindstaff Road/Burnsville, NC 28714/(828) 675-4243
cwconrad at OR cwconrad at

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