[B-Greek] MONOGENHS in the Fourth Gospel

Leonard Jayawardena leonardj at live.com
Sun Jul 11 07:10:33 EDT 2010



In my last post under this thread, I argued that MONOGENHS in the Fourth Gospel and 1 John means "best-beloved" (not "only-begotten" or "unique" or whatever).
 
John 13:23 supports my understanding of this word: 
 
HN ANAKEIMENOS hEIS EK TWN MAQHTWN AUTOU EN TWi KALPWi TOU IHSOU, hON HGAPA hO IHSOU.  
 
Compare this with John 1:18:
 
QEON OUDEIS hEWRAKEN PWPOTE; MONOGENHS QEOS hO WN hEIS TON KOLPON TOU PATROS EKEINOS EXSHGHSATO.
 
Comparison of these two verses show that the beloved disciple was in a relationship with Jesus analogous to the relationship Jesus enjoyed with the Father. The beloved disciple was lying in the bosom of Jesus because of the special relationship he had with Jesus, or, as the writer puts it, Jesus "loved" him. We know that Jesus loved all his disciples, so he must have "loved" the beloved disciple in some special sense. In John 1:18, by the words hO WN EIS TON KALPON immediately following MONOGENHS QEOS (or YIOS--I think QEOS is original), we get a clue as to what MONOGENHS means in this verse: best-beloved. As I showed in my earlier post, there are other lines of argument to support this sense for MONOGENHS in the Fourth Gospel and 1 John. 
 
 
If MONOGENHS QEOS is original in John 1:18, we have an example for MONOGENHS used in the sense of "best-beloved" with a word other than "son." Perhaps we could then call the beloved disciple MONOGENHS MAQHTHS TOU IHSOU? 
 
 
Leonard Jayawardena 		 	   		  
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