[B-Greek] Mark 7:18-19

Carl Conrad cwconrad2 at mac.com
Sat Oct 31 17:14:27 EDT 2009

On Oct 31, 2009, at 4:17 PM, Wieland Willker wrote:

> Chris Caragounis comments on the passage in his "Development
> of Greek and the NT", 2004, p. 538-41. He writes:
> "On the other hand, the alternative reading KAQARIZON would
> constitute the last of a long line of verbal forms
> EKPOREUETAI) that have PAN TO as their subject. In this
> case, the meaning would be: 'whatever enters into a man from
> outside cannot defile him, since it does not enter his
> heart, but his stomach, and goes out to the latrine purging
> all foods.' This way of construing KAQARIZON is
> syntactically unexceptionable. This seems to be the
> understanding of the other alternatives (D, it, Sy-S)
> mentioned above. The expression PAN TO refers to the
> imagined uncleanness that one receives when eating with
> unwashed hands. ... The exit of the waste from the body was
> understood in antiquity as a cleansing or a purging. It must
> be pointed out that precisely the verb KAQAITW/KAQARIZW
> along with a number of other words derived from the same
> stem, were used in ancient medicine of the purging of the
> stomach (KOILIA). ... The language used here would,
> consequently, be a natural way of expressing the view that
> whatever unclean had entered into a man also came out
> together with the other foods, and thus the KOILIA was
> purged of them all. ... But precisely because this reading
> gives good sense it may have been a deliberate correction
> (though not necessarily) for the difficult reading of the
> masculine participle. ... All things considered, the present
> state of the (especially external) evidence renders the
> chosen reading the better alternative, albeit not thoroughly
> satisfactory."

As much sense as it may make that the KOILIA should be purged/ 
cleansed, does it not even so seem odd to no one that we're talking  
NOT about "purging the stomach" but rather abut "purging/purifying all  
foods." That remains for me the stickler that renders the reading  
KAQARIZON insupportable.

Carl W. Conrad
Department of Classics, Washington University (Retired)

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