2Cor 1:21

Carl W. Conrad cwconrad at artsci.wustl.edu
Sat Aug 25 22:07:19 EDT 2001


At 7:18 PM -0700 8/25/01, Dmitriy Reznik wrote:
>Dear Carl and others:
>Thank you for your explanation of DIA about recommendation letters. Here
>is another question.
>hO DE BEBAIWN hHMAS SUN hUMIN EIS CRISTON KAI CRISAS hHMAS QEOS
>Now he that establisheth us with you {1} in Christ, and anointed us, is
>God; {1) Gr [into]}
>I know that EIS sometimes can mean the same as EN. But is this the case?
>Does CRISTOS here mean Jesus, or maybe just "anointed one" in general,
>because after that we see that G-d is the one who ANOINTED us? In other
>words, doesn't the passage mean that G-d made us "christs", anointed?

The questions you raise here perhaps go to the heart of the larger question
of how Paul uses the phrase EN CRISTWi and here EIS CRISTON. My own
conception of Paul's usage of these phrases is that he is referring to the
risen Christ as the bond uniting believers into a corporate "body of
Christ"; this entails that EN CRISTWi would mean something like "in
corporate union with Christ (and all believers)" = "as a member of the body
of Christ" and EIS CRISTON would mean something like "into corporate union
with Christ (and all believers)" = "so as to be a member of the body of
Christ"

Curious isn't it that we have a present participle BEBAIWN with hHMAS SUN
hUMIN EIS CRISTON and an aorist participle CRISAS with hHMAS--so that the
action of "consolidation" or "confirmation" as joint members of the body of
Christ is an ongoing one, while the "anointment" referred to be CRISAS is
something that has already taken place--I would assume that by this he
refers to the whole complex of events associated with coming to belief,
baptism, and acceptance into the believing community as a brother or sister
of Christ--so that, yes: "we" have been made into "christs" (with a
lower-case "c") in the sense of being brothers and sisters of Christ.

There may be other ways of understanding the imagery and phraseology here;
I do nothing more than enunciate my own understanding of these curious
phrases BEBAIWN hHMAS SUN hUMIN EIS CRISTON and CRISAS hHMAS.
-- 

Carl W. Conrad
Department of Classics, Washington University (Emeritus)
Most months: 1647 Grindstaff Road/Burnsville, NC 28714/(828) 675-4243
cwconrad at artsci.wustl.edu OR cwconrad at ioa.com
WWW: http://www.artsci.wustl.edu/~cwconrad/



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