METANOIA and METAMELOMAI

Iver Larsen iver_larsen at sil.org
Sat Aug 25 05:41:16 EDT 2001


> On Fri, 24 Aug 2001, Dr. John S. Waldrip wrote:
>
> - METANOIA basically refers to a change of mind.
> -
> - IS there a Greek word that refers primarily to a change of heart?
>
> What about metamellomai?  It's been a long time since I've read up on the
> two words translated "repent," but this was described as "to change one's
> heart" (to me, once upon a time), versus metanoia, to changes one's mind.
>
> -Ethan Metsger (ethanm at ccil.org) (http://www.ccil.org/~ethanm/)

It is always helpful to compare two words which are semantically related.
Therefore, Louw and Nida's lexicon based on semantic domains is often very
useful.

As Clay has already pointed out, their entry for METANOEW is "to change one’
s way of life as the result of a complete change of thought and attitude
with regard to sin and righteousness."

The main entry for METAMELOMAI is "to change one’s mind about something,
with the probable implication of regret."

In short, METAMELOMAI is more like "changing you mind" in English, whereas
METANOEW/METANOIA is much deeper and life-changing, more like "having a
change of heart." And that involves what Carl has explained from Rom 12:2.

Although it is METANOIA that relates to the Greek word for mind, it is
really METAMELOMAI that relates more closely to the English phrase "change
your mind," the opposite of what you once upon a time heard.

Iver Larsen




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