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Didaktikon
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Date Posted:29/04/2011 5:41 AMCopy HTML

Good afternoon, all.

Just this afternoon I received my long awaited copy of  'ACTS: A Handbook on the Greek Text' written by Professors Culy and Parsons, and published by the Baylor University Press. According to the Preface: 'This volume is intended for Greek scholars and students at the intermediate and advanced level, as well as for students of Acts itself.' The 558 page work functions as an exegetical commentary, limiting itself to addressing only the grammar and syntax of the Greek text of the Acts of the Apostles, but doing so in excrutiating detail. This handbook is also the most comprehensive work of this sort currently in print, and will likely inform the writing of commentaries on Acts for decades to come.

Naturally I turned to the discussion of Acts 2:1-13, to see what these two scholars had to say about Pentecost and the apostles. In their discussion of verse one, the authors spent a bit of time addressing just who was intended by the nominative plural masculine adjective πάντες, which is universally translated as '(they were) all' in the English versions. Having reviewed the grammar and syntax of the text itself, Culy and Parsons arrived at precisely the same conclusion as I did several years ago (the implications of which I discussed at some length in my 'large' Acts essay). They concluded that the 'they were all' refers to simply the twelve apostles, summarising their argument: '... the fact that (1) 1:15-26 functions as background information, with 2:1 resuming the main story line (see 1:5 on ἐν ταῖς ἡμέραις ταύταις); (2) the focus on this pericope is on the apostles (see 2:14, 37); and (3) the expressions "Galileans" (2:7) links this group to the "men of Galilee" in 1:11, who were probably the apostles (Sweeny, 245-48).'

There have been one or two Revivalists over the years who've sought to dismiss my position that it was just the twelve apostles upon whom the theophanies that took place on the Day of Pentecost focused, and that it was they, and they alone, who miraculously spoke in the languages of the Diaspora. Such nay-sayers must now attempt to find fault in the definitive discussion of the subject provided by Drs Mikeal Parsons and Martin Culy, and now they must conclusively point out how they believe these two front-rank Greek grammarians have misconstrued the grammar and syntax of the Greek text.

To them I say, 'good luck with that.'

Blessings,

Ian

email: didaktikon@gmail.com
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Re:Pentecost and the Apostles

Date Posted:29/04/2011 7:09 AMCopy HTML

Ian,

That’s cool. Encouraging to have confirmed what one finds out for oneself.

 

I believe in Christianity as I believe the sun has risen; not only because I see it, but because by it I see everything else. C.S.Lewis.
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Re:Pentecost and the Apostles

Date Posted:29/04/2011 9:50 AMCopy HTML

Howdy Ian,

You genius son of a gun...

You have just broaden my research horizons further. I also took note of the range of that commentary list and yeah !! you're sharp !!  And to that I must thank you. I have just placed my order on Amazon.com so my copy should arrive no later than mid June.

Once again thanks a squillion..


Eric..
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Re:Pentecost and the Apostles

Date Posted:30/04/2011 1:03 AMCopy HTML

Good morning, Ralph.

Encouraging to have confirmed what one finds out for oneself. I tend towards being very careful in my exegeses, plus Luke's Greek is perfectly clear in what it presents, so there wasn't any doubt in my mind what the passage meant (or its implications with respect to the Revivalist position). And as I've mentioned here previously, I confirmed my conclusions with several international Greek grammarians before I published that essay, so I had all the 'confirmation' that I required, years ago. This book is simply the final nail in the coffin for the mistaken view that anyone other than the 12 apostles 'spoke in tongues' at Pentecost. Unlike the standard commentaries, which often don't even touch on the subject in any great detail, 'ACTS: A Handbook on the Greek Text' does so explicitly, comprehensively and tellingly.

Blessings,

Ian
email: didaktikon@gmail.com
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Re:Pentecost and the Apostles

Date Posted:30/04/2011 6:28 AMCopy HTML

Reply to Didaktikon

Good morning, Ralph.

Encouraging to have confirmed what one finds out for oneself. I tend towards being very careful in my exegeses, plus Luke's Greek is perfectly clear in what it presents, so there wasn't any doubt in my mind what the passage meant (or its implications with respect to the Revivalist position). And as I've mentioned here previously, I confirmed my conclusions with several international Greek grammarians before I published that essay, so I had all the 'confirmation' that I required, years ago. This book is simply the final nail in the coffin for the mistaken view that anyone other than the 12 apostles 'spoke in tongues' at Pentecost. Unlike the standard commentaries, which often don't even touch on the subject in any great detail, 'ACTS: A Handbook on the Greek Text' does so explicitly, comprehensively and tellingly.

Blessings,

Ian

Good Afternoon Ian,

The revivalist have taken their position from the standard pentecostal position on this particular subject.. I would suggest that this position would be very firm throughout the whole pentecostal stream going all the way back to the founding of the AOG in the second decade of the 20th Century.

Now please allow me, if you don't mind, submit the following thoughts for you to test me on.

I have issues with 2:6 and I await now to read the handbook. TO my view there are three aorist verbs in the opening of verse 6 but keeping in mind that there is no versification in the actual texts themselves and being written in uncial, I feel the sentence can translate as: "At the moment this sound happened, the multitude assembled and were confused/bewildered ..."   And this indicates to me that the apostles did not change locations from some unknown residence with their so called 120 to the temple precincts.. Nope this is stupidly impossible. They, i.e. the Apostles could only have been right there in the Temple there and then when the theophany occurred. The whole context is just plain Jewish with the history - geographic setting being the temple location only. Yet Ian I have repeatedly come across learned professors who unanimously agree that the location for the baptisms could only be the Temple for the 3000 because of the Mikvah facilities being readily available but being at a vague unknown impossible location for the theophany. For me, verse 6 spells it out plainly that the Apostles were in the one location throughout the entire narrated event from 2:1 to 2:47. And if the location of second part of the chapter is the Temple, then why shouldn't the first half which describes the Theophany occur also in the Temple?? And further the setting of the very next chapter IS THE TEMPLE.. And as I said, the actual text does not have verses or chapters for that matter.... Chapter 3 continues the narrative from Chapter 2..

"γενομενης δε της φωνης ταυτης συνηλθεν το πληθοε και συνεχυθη... etc.."  

Thanks again Ian

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Re:Pentecost and the Apostles

Date Posted:30/04/2011 7:11 AMCopy HTML

Hi, Eric.

Well, there's nothing in the grammar of the Greek text that states, suggests, or even hints that the apostolic group moved from one point (i.e. the supposed 'upper room' where the Pentecostals/Revivalists believe the theophany took place) to another point (i.e. the Temple precincts where Peter's preaching took place). In point of fact the text itself dismisses the very possibility of this view. In 2:1 we read that the apostles were located in the one place. At 2:6 we find that the sound of the rushing wind caused the Jewish faithful to then gather (συνῆλθεν) around them. Then, at 2:14, the text clearly states that Peter and the 11 stood up (they had been sitting when the event occurred), with Peter immediately launching into his sermon.

As a side note, whilst it's perfectly true that there were מִקְוֶוֹת located around the Temple, I'm not convinced that there would've been enough time to immerse the roughly 3,000 Christian converts in them during the few hours then available to the apostles (i.e. before the final hour of prayer and the close of the day). Especially not when one considers that the 'baths' were in constant use by the Jewish pilgrims attending the Temple. For this reason I'm inclined towards the view that baptism by pouring rather than by immersing is what took place.

Blessings,

Ian
email: didaktikon@gmail.com
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Re:Pentecost and the Apostles

Date Posted:30/04/2011 9:02 AMCopy HTML

Reply to Didaktikon

Hi, Eric.

Well, there's nothing in the grammar of the Greek text that states, suggests, or even hints that the apostolic group moved from one point (i.e. the supposed 'upper room' where the Pentecostals/Revivalists believe the theophany took place) to another point (i.e. the Temple precincts where Peter's preaching took place). In point of fact the text itself dismisses the very possibility of this view. In 2:1 we read that the apostles were located in the one place. At 2:6 we find that the sound of the rushing wind caused the Jewish faithful to then gather (συνῆλθεν) around them. Then, at 2:14, the text clearly states that Peter and the 11 stood up (they had been sitting when the event occurred), with Peter immediately launching into his sermon.

As a side note, whilst it's perfectly true that their were מִקְוֶוֹת located around the Temple, I'm not convinced that there would've been enough time to immerse the roughly 3,000 Christian converts in them during the few hours then available to the apostles (i.e. before the final hour of prayer and the close of the day). Especially not when one considers that the 'baths' were in constant use by the Jewish pilgrims attending the Temple. For this reason I'm inclined towards the view that baptism by pouring rather than by immersing is what took place.

Blessings,

Ian

Hi Ian,

That's a good point you raised about baptism.. But can we assume from the text that Peter did the baptizing ?? or would the 3000 have gone into a Mikveh and immersed themselves. At the temple depending on what your sex is, that is a man or a woman, you went into the Mikveh pertaining to your sex and completely undressed yourself and immersed yourself and then got out of the bath, dried yourself off and then got dressed and then into the Temple you would go. (By the way that IS NOT ME !! in the pic):

 
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Re:Pentecost and the Apostles

Date Posted:30/04/2011 10:24 AMCopy HTML

Eric,

Well that's precisely the point, isn't it? Mikveh washing was individually performed, and in relative privacy; consequently, it wasn't baptism. To my mind there is no way that the mikva'oth would've been used for the 3,000 odd baptisms at Pentecost precisely because of the fact of gender segregation and privacy. Given that such lustrations couldn't be performed publicly, they couldn't fulfill the Christian requirement for a public witness. A consideration of the full range of c-o-n-t-e-x-t-s is always necessary for sound biblical exegesis.

So my personal opinion is, as I stated earlier, that the Pentecost baptisms were performed by pouring in the Temple courts, and not by immersing in the mikva'oth.

Blessings,

Ian
email: didaktikon@gmail.com
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Re:Pentecost and the Apostles

Date Posted:01/05/2011 7:59 AMCopy HTML

Ian, here's one for you. This picture is taken from memory, I think, is the ruins of a Byzantine Church dating about 3rd to 6th century.. In this baptistry, full immersion  of the large toenail is about all you will achieve. The location of this church, I think is at the place of the feeding of the 5000 or the Church of the Beatitudes or something like that but anyway I thought it good to share this with you.


To anyone other than Ian reading these posts. With regards to Ian's comment about c-o-n-t-e-x-t.  Well for me,

c-o-n-t-e-x-t is like following a well set pathway that leads down a rich goldmine. And that pathway will ultimately take you to the best nuggets.

Blessings
Eric
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Re:Pentecost and the Apostles

Date Posted:22/08/2014 7:06 AMCopy HTML

 As a former leader in RCI I have only this to say: "By their fruits you will know them". I have many friends/brothers and sisters in the Revival Centres and the Revival Fellowship. I am reasonably intelligent (enough to qualify for Mensa) but have learned what Jesus says is so. I have gone to visit some of my former congregants and found their assemblies shrinking, desiccated and moribund. 
Horror of horrors! I have found groups I previously considered wishy-washy or compromised that are seeing souls saved and are experiencing rapid growth.
So back to my first statement, 'by their fruits' . God released me from by dogged doctrinal stance. Thank you Jesus. I no longer feel the need to convince anyone by argument or knowledge. I now just point people to Jesus while not compromising the truths I've learned from the Bible.
Once last thing before I step down from my soapbox. All of us are imperfect and the Devil takes great delight in seeing God's kids fight each other.
P.s. If there's any extra text below it's because I'm getting old and haven't yet worked out this fangled-dangled digital world.
W.
One last thing before
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Re:Pentecost and the Apostles

Date Posted:16/11/2014 5:33 AMCopy HTML

 "I have gone to visit some of my former  congregants and found their assemblies shrinking, desiccated and moribund."                                                        ------------------------------------
If you're still around, Hi to the former leader in RCI.  Good to hear from you.
It's been a long time since my association with the Revivalist movement but my clear recollection of the RCI stand was that the flock have no communication with ex members, except "if you happen to bump into them" a brief acknowledgement,"but no further fellowship."  It was in their guidelines under discipline.  Moreover, they prided themselves on the fact that they never change; not like the "so called Christians" and the compromising others who accommodate and bend to and fro to suit the times.
So, I was surprised at an ex member,  in your case an ex leader,  casually dropping in to visit your former congregants andmaking comment on what you found to be the drying up and even dying state of their (RCI) assemblies.  Furthermore, in your case, an ex leader who has wondered off into Churches which don't preach Revivalist doctrine.  These are the Churches you have seen to be not wishy-washy or compromised but saving souls and experiencing rapid growth. Certainly not what RCI would like their members to be hearing.
What of your experience among your friends in RF?  Has liberalism come into Revivalism?  TRF was also strongly opposed to members having contact with ex members, as strongly expressed in the following by one of their pastors who was formally a senior pastor in RCI :-
"Don't have anything to do with them, otherwise we're being unscriptural.  Don't see them. Break your friendships, it's all over now etc.  If they have a wedding, good luck to them, but don't go to it.  If you get an invitation, refuse it. You might have been best friends, you have nothing more to do with them etc"Melbourne "pastor'  Darryl Williams.Revival Fellowship (TRF) Discussion Category.
A recorded version of Williams' expounding this subject can be searched out on this website.
So, have Revivalists relaxed and are they changing their old attitudes?  It seems a little bit that way.  Perhaps the day will come when you, former leader in RCI, will be invited in as guest speaker bringing greetings and some fresh ideas learned from the growing Churches which you have visited……..or perhaps not!
EV
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Re:Pentecost and the Apostles

Date Posted:16/11/2014 5:33 AMCopy HTML

 "I have gone to visit some of my former  congregants and found their assemblies shrinking, desiccated and moribund."                                                        ------------------------------------
If you're still around, Hi to the former leader in RCI.  Good to hear from you.
It's been a long time since my association with the Revivalist movement but my clear recollection of the RCI stand was that the flock have no communication with ex members, except "if you happen to bump into them" a brief acknowledgement,"but no further fellowship."  It was in their guidelines under discipline.  Moreover, they prided themselves on the fact that they never change; not like the "so called Christians" and the compromising others who accommodate and bend to and fro to suit the times.
So, I was surprised at an ex member,  in your case an ex leader,  casually dropping in to visit your former congregants andmaking comment on what you found to be the drying up and even dying state of their (RCI) assemblies.  Furthermore, in your case, an ex leader who has wondered off into Churches which don't preach Revivalist doctrine.  These are the Churches you have seen to be not wishy-washy or compromised but saving souls and experiencing rapid growth. Certainly not what RCI would like their members to be hearing.
What of your experience among your friends in RF?  Has liberalism come into Revivalism?  TRF was also strongly opposed to members having contact with ex members, as strongly expressed in the following by one of their pastors who was formally a senior pastor in RCI :-
"Don't have anything to do with them, otherwise we're being unscriptural.  Don't see them. Break your friendships, it's all over now etc.  If they have a wedding, good luck to them, but don't go to it.  If you get an invitation, refuse it. You might have been best friends, you have nothing more to do with them etc"Melbourne "pastor'  Darryl Williams.Revival Fellowship (TRF) Discussion Category.
A recorded version of Williams' expounding this subject can be searched out on this website.
So, have Revivalists relaxed and are they changing their old attitudes?  It seems a little bit that way.  Perhaps the day will come when you, former leader in RCI, will be invited in as guest speaker bringing greetings and some fresh ideas learned from the growing Churches which you have visited……..or perhaps not!
EV
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