[B-Greek] 2Co 13:9 KATARTISIN

Carl W. Conrad cwconrad at artsci.wustl.edu
Sun Jun 18 10:08:56 EDT 2006

On Jun 18, 2006, at 10:00 AM, Iver Larsen wrote:

>> The word KATARTISIN  (2Co 13:9) is also seen as a verb form in 13:11.
>> Among its diverse meanings, how much this be corresponding to the
>> modern psychological term 'maturity'?
>> Thanks for you insight.
>> Oun Kwon.
> Looking at the verb KATARTIZW and the noun KATARTISMOS in Eph 4:12,  
> I would suggest that the idea is "make ready for
> business" or "prepare to fulfill its purpose".
> The verb as used in Gal 6:1 is often translated "restore" and for  
> the fishing nets in Mat 4:21 it is often translated
> "repair" or "mend".
> In some contexts the idea of bringing back to a former well- 
> functional and well-ordered state is present, but in other
> contexts there does not seem to be any restoration implied, e.g.  
> Mat 21:16, Rom 9:22, Heb 11:3.
> Even for the nets, one can say that the focus may not be on the  
> repair work, but more on making the nets ready for the
> next catch. That is, you look forward rather than backward.
> Sometimes the focus is on training or equipping, but again, the aim  
> is to make the person or thing ready to do what
> he/she/it is purposed to do.
> I don't think "perfection" is the best translation, and for  
> maturity I would be looking for the TELEW group of words.

I should add that my own sense of the usage of KATARTIZW and related  
nouns KATARTISMOS and KATARTISIS is that the verb root relates more  
to perfect craftsmanship that to biological maturation. And yet those  
two notions -- perfect craftsmanship and biological maturation -- do  
seem to overlap to some extent.

I hesitate to point to the etymology, but it might just possibly be  
helpful in this instance. ARTI, the adverbial root underlying the  
verb and several other significant words, is like English "precisely"  
or "right" or "just" (in "just now") or German "gerade." The Athenian  
legislator and sage Solon spoke of men lacking a "right mind" (NOOS  
ARTIOS) as bringing ruin upon their city through folly. KATARTIZW  
means fundamentally I think, "make right" or "put in perfect working  
order" or "restore to perfect working order." TELEW can mean that  
too, but it is more often used of biological maturing than of  
"whipping something into shape."

Carl W. Conrad
Department of Classics, Washington University (Retired)
1989 Grindstaff Road/Burnsville, NC 28714/(828) 675-4243
cwconrad2 at mac.com
WWW: http://www.ioa.com/~cwconrad/

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