The Logic of Matt 11:27 & Patristic Greek citations

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Stirling Bartholomew
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The Logic of Matt 11:27 & Patristic Greek citations

Post by Stirling Bartholomew » March 10th, 2015, 2:45 pm

The Logic of Matt 11:27
Matt 11:27 Πάντα μοι παρεδόθη ὑπὸ τοῦ πατρός μου, καὶ οὐδεὶς ἐπιγινώσκει τὸν υἱὸν εἰ μὴ ὁ πατήρ, οὐδὲ τὸν πατέρα τις ἐπιγινώσκει εἰ μὴ ὁ υἱὸς καὶ ᾧ ἐὰν βούληται ὁ υἱὸς ἀποκαλύψαι.

The order of the first two clauses is reversed in two Uncials N and U. A small but representative sample of the Greek patristic citations follow. It seems to me that the so called logical problem with the unknowable Son deciding (βούληται) to whom he will reveal to Father isn’t solved by simply reordering the first two clauses. R.T. France[1] suggests that with reordering of the clause the Father is the subject of βούληται and the Son is object of ἀποκαλύψαι but I don’t see any Greek citations that support that. What am I overlooking?

§1 Justin Martyr Apol 63.3.4
Οὐδεὶς ἔγνω τὸν πατέρα εἰ μὴ ὁ υἱός,
οὐδὲ τὸν υἱὸν εἰ μὴ ὁ πατὴρ καὶ οἷς ἂν
ἀποκαλύψῃ ὁ υἱός.

§2 Clem. Rom. Hom. 17.4.3.5
Οὐδεὶς ἔγνω τὸν πατέρα εἰ μὴ ὁ υἱός, ὡς
οὐδὲ τὸν υἱόν τις οἶδεν εἰ μὴ ὁ πατὴρ
καὶ οἷς ἂν βούληται ὁ υἱὸς ἀποκαλύψαι

§3 Irenaeus Ad. har 1.13.2.31
Πάντα μοι παρεδόθη ὑπὸ τοῦ Πατρός μου· καὶ οὐδεὶς ἔγνω τὸν
Πατέρα, εἰ μὴ ὁ Υἱὸς, καὶ τὸν Υἱὸν, εἰ μὴ ὁ Πατὴρ, καὶ ᾧ
ἂν ὁ Υἱὸς ἀποκαλύψῃ.

§4 Clem. Alex. Protrepticus 1.10.3.3
θεὸν οὐδεὶς ἔγνω, εἰ μὴ ὁ υἱὸς καὶ ᾧ ἂν ὁ υἱὸς ἀποκαλύψῃ.


[1] “… the positions of the father and son in the verse were reversed, with the result that the last clause was about the Father revealing the Son to those he chose.” R.T. France Mat. NICNT p440 n5. Temporary Link: https://www.dropbox.com/s/1qlpw42ow9r23 ... M.png?dl=0
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Barry Hofstetter
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Re: The Logic of Matt 11:27 & Patristic Greek citations

Post by Barry Hofstetter » March 11th, 2015, 4:50 am

I must admit that I have trouble seeing how switching the order of the two clauses without changing the syntax of the two clauses would so change the meaning as he suggests. Have you had a chance to look at the secondary source he cites?
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Stirling Bartholomew
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Re: The Logic of Matt 11:27 & Patristic Greek citations

Post by Stirling Bartholomew » March 11th, 2015, 1:15 pm

Barry Hofstetter wrote:I must admit that I have trouble seeing how switching the order of the two clauses without changing the syntax of the two clauses would so change the meaning as he suggests. Have you had a chance to look at the secondary source he cites?
Barry,

Yes I pulled it up with googel books, try searching for: "Most patristic witnesses testify to the reversed form of the saying, thereby eliminating the problem of a Revealer who himself remains concealed." [1]

"… the reversal of order was seen as an improvement, an alleviation in its logical flow …" but then Celia Deutsch calls this analysis into question: What is the point of the logion? "…the logion concerns the mutual and exclusive knowledge that exists between the Father and the Son, and focuses on the Son's role as Revealer." [2]

I haven't read all the patristic sources that cite this passage. It would be useful to know if any of early christian authors explicitly point out or discuss the so called logical problem with the text. If so one would think that Celia Deutsch would have pointed this out.


[1] Celia Deutsch, Hidden Wisdom and the Easy Yoke: Wisdom, Torah, and Discipleship in Matthew 11:25-30. JSNT Supp 18 (Sheffield, England: Sheffield Academic Press, 1987, p 34

[2] ibid p35.
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Re: The Logic of Matt 11:27 & Patristic Greek citations

Post by Stirling Bartholomew » March 11th, 2015, 3:25 pm

Matt. 11:27 Πάντα μοι παρεδόθη ὑπὸ τοῦ πατρός μου, καὶ οὐδεὶς ἐπιγινώσκει τὸν υἱὸν εἰ μὴ ὁ πατήρ, οὐδὲ τὸν πατέρα τις ἐπιγινώσκει εἰ μὴ ὁ υἱὸς καὶ ᾧ ἐὰν βούληται ὁ υἱὸς ἀποκαλύψαι.

It seems that the text as we have it ls both logical an in the right order if we think about the kind of knowledge which the Father has of the Son and the Son has of the Father. The knowledge people had of the Son during his public ministry was a different kind of knowledge. What Paul calls knowledge after the flesh. Regarding this see: John Chrysostom On the Incomprehensible Nature of God Homily 5:
Ἀλλ' ἵνα μὴ ἀπὸ λογισμῶν τὰ τοιαῦτα κατασκευάζωμεν,
5.285
φέρε πάλιν ἐπὶ τὴν Γραφὴν τὸν λόγον ἀγάγωμεν. «Οὐχ ὅτι
τὸν Πατέρα, φησίν, ἑώρακέ τις εἰ μὴ ὁ ὢν ἐκ τοῦ Θεοῦ,
οὗτος ἑώρακε τὸν Πατέρα.» Καὶ τί τοῦτο; φησίν· οὐδέπω
γὰρ αὐτῷ γνῶσιν ἀκριβῆ τοῦτο ἐμαρτύρησε τὸ ῥῆμα.
Ἀλλ' ὅτι μὲν αὐτὸν ἡ κτίσις οὐκ οἶδεν ἐδήλωσεν εἰπών·
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»Οὐχ ὅτι τὸν Πατέρα τις ἑώρακε» καὶ ὅτι ὁ Υἱὸς αὐτὸν
οἶδε, καὶ τοῦτο πάλιν ἐδήλωσε προσθείς· «... εἰ μὴ ὁ ὢν
ἐκ τοῦ Θεοῦ, οὗτος ἑώρακε τὸν Πατέρα»· ὅτι μέντοι
ἀκριβῶς αὐτὸν οἶδε, καὶ οὕτως ὡς αὐτὸς ἑαυτόν, οὐδέπω
τοῦτο ἀποδέδεικται. Ἐνδέχεται γάρ, φησί, μήτε τὴν κτίσιν
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αὐτὸν εἰδέναι σαφῶς, μήτε τὸν Υἱόν, ἀλλ' ἐκείνης μὲν
σαφέστερον, τὴν μέντοι ἀκριβῆ κατάληψιν μηδὲ τοῦτον
ἔχειν. Ὅτι μὲν γὰρ αὐτὸν ὁρᾷ ὅπερ ἐστὶ καὶ γινώσκει
εἶπεν, ὅτι δὲ ἀκριβῶς αὐτὸν γινώσκει, καὶ οὕτως ὡς αὐτὸς
ἑαυτόν, οὔπω τοῦτο ἐδήλωσε.
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Βούλεσθε οὖν καὶ τοῦτο ἀπὸ τῶν Γραφῶν πιστωσώμεθα,
καὶ ἀπ' αὐτῆς τῆς τοῦ Χριστοῦ φωνῆς; Οὐκοῦν ἀκούσωμεν
τί φησι πρὸς τοὺς Ἰουδαίους· «Καθὼς γινώσκει με ὁ
Πατήρ, κἀγὼ γινώσκω τὸν Πατέρα.» Τί ταύτης ἀκρι-
βέστερον βούλει τῆς γνώσεως λοιπόν; Ἐρώτησον τὸν
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ἀντιλέγοντα· οἶδεν ἀκριβῶς τὸν Υἱὸν ὁ Πατήρ, καὶ πᾶσαν
αὐτοῦ ἀκριβῶς τὴν γνῶσιν ἔχει, καὶ οὐδὲν αὐτὸν λανθάνει
τῶν κατὰ τὸν Υἱόν, ἀλλ' ἀπηρτισμένη ἐστὶν ἡ εἴδησις;
Ναί, φησίν. Οὐκοῦν, ὅταν ἀκούσῃς ὅτι καὶ ὁ Υἱὸς οὕτως
αὐτὸν οἶδεν ὡς αὐτὸς τὸν Υἱόν, μηδὲν ἔτι ζήτει πλέον,
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οὕτω μετὰ ἀκριβείας τῆς γνώσεως ἐξισαζούσης.
Καὶ γὰρ καὶ ἀλλαχοῦ τοῦτο αὐτὸ ἐμφαίνων ἔλεγεν·
»Οὐδεὶς γινώσκει τὸν Υἱόν, εἰ μὴ ὁ Πατήρ, οὐδὲ τὸν
Πατέρα τις ἐπιγινώσκει, εἰ μὴ ὁ Υἱὸς καὶ ᾧ ἐὰν βούληται
ὁ Υἱὸς ἀποκαλύψαι.» Ἀποκαλύπτει δέ, οὐχ ὅσον αὐτὸς
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οἶδεν, ἀλλ' ὅσον ἡμεῖς χωροῦμεν. Εἰ γὰρ ὁ Παῦλος τοῦτο
ποιεῖ, πολλῷ μᾶλλον ὁ Χριστός· καὶ γὰρ ἐκεῖνός φησι
τοῖς ἑαυτοῦ μαθηταῖς· «Οὐκ ἠδυνήθην ὑμῖν λαλῆσαι ὡς
πνευματικοῖς, ἀλλ' ὡς σαρκικοῖς· ὡς νηπίους ἐν Χριστῷ
γάλα ὑμᾶς ἐπότισα, οὐ βρῶμα· οὔπω γὰρ ἠδύνασθε.»
5.320
Ἀλλὰ Κορινθίοις τοῦτο, φησίν, ἔλεγε μόνον. Τί
οὖν, ἂν δείξωμεν εἰδότα καὶ ἕτερά τινα, ἃ μηδεὶς ἀνθρώ-
πων ἔμαθεν ἤδη, καὶ ἀπῆλθε μόνος αὐτὰ τῶν πάντων
ἀνθρώπων εἰδώς; Καὶ ποῦ τοῦτο ἔστιν εὑρεῖν; Ἐν τῇ
πρὸς Κορινθίους ἐπιστολῇ· οὗτος γάρ ἐστιν ὁ λέγων ὅτι
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»Ἤκουσα ἄρρητα ῥήματα, ἃ οὐκ ἐξὸν ἀνθρώπῳ λαλῆσαι.»
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C. Stirling Bartholomew

Stirling Bartholomew
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Re: The Logic of Matt 11:27 & Patristic Greek citations

Post by Stirling Bartholomew » March 12th, 2015, 3:48 pm

After much reading in the greek Fathers I found in Epiphanius Panarion a citation which does not have the explicit subject ὁ υἱὸς with the verbs ἀποκαλύψῃ or βούληται: οὐδεὶς οἶδε τὸν πατέρα εἰ μὴ ὁ υἱός, καὶ τὸν υἱὸν εἰ μὴ ὁ πατήρ, καὶ ᾧ ἐὰν ἀποκαλύψῃ. This was the only citation I was able to track down which would support reading of ὁ πατήρ as the subject of ἀποκαλύψῃ but see … ἀποκαλύπτει δὲ διὰ πνεύματος ἁγίου in the context below. Epiphanius also cites the form where ὁ υἱὸς is the explicit subject of ἀποκαλύψῃ.

Epiphanius Panarion (Adversus haereses) who cites the passage in several forms. Again, the form I was looking for was minus the explicit subject ὁ υἱὸς.

Epiphanius Panarion ( Adversus haereses)
v 3, page 400, line 18

οὐδενὶ γὰρ τῶν γεγονότων εἶπε ποτὲ «κάθου
ἐκ δεξιῶν μου», οὐδὲ μὴν ὁ μονογενὴς περί τινος εἴρηκεν ὅτι «ὁ ἑωρακὼς
ἐμὲ ἑώρακε τὸν πατέρα» καὶ «ἐγὼ ἐν τῷ πατρί, καὶ ὁ πατὴρ ἐν ἐμοί» καὶ
3.400.18
»οὐδεὶς οἶδε τὸν πατέρα εἰ μὴ ὁ υἱός, καὶ τὸν υἱὸν εἰ μὴ ὁ πατήρ, καὶ ᾧ
ἐὰν ἀποκαλύψῃ»
. ἀποκαλύπτει δὲ διὰ πνεύματος ἁγίου, τοῦ γινώσκοντος
3.400.20
καὶ διδάσκοντος καὶ ἀπαγγέλλοντος ἐν κόσμῳ τὰ υἱοῦ, «ἐρευνῶντός τε καὶ
τὰ βάθη τοῦ θεοῦ».
διὰ τοῦτο γάρ φησιν «ὁ μὴ τιμῶν τὸν υἱὸν καθὼς τιμᾷ
τὸν πατέρα, ἡ ὀργὴ τοῦ θεοῦ μένει ἐπ' αὐτόν»· καὶ οὐκ εἶπεν «ὁ μὴ τιμῶν
ἀγγέλους ὡς τιμᾷ τὸν πατέρα», οὐδὲ πάλιν εἶπεν «ὁ μὴ καὶ τὸν υἱὸν
τιμῶν», ἀλλὰ τὸν υἱὸν ὡς τὸν πατέρα, ὡσαύτως ὅτι «οὐκ ἀφεθήσεται τῷ
3.400.25
εἰς τὸ πνεῦμα βλασφημοῦντι, οὔτε ᾧδε οὔτε ἐν τῷ μέλλοντι αἰῶνι», ἵνα
σημάνῃ τῆς τριάδος τὸ ἀπρόσιτον καὶ ἀσύγκριτον ἐν πατρὶ καὶ υἱῷ καὶ
ἁγίῳ πνεύματι.

Epiphanius Ancoratus
Chapter 67, section 5, line 2

οὐδεὶς γὰρ οἶδε τὸν
πατέρα εἰ μὴ ὁ υἱός, οὐδὲ τὸν υἱὸν εἰ μὴ ὁ πατὴρ καὶ ᾧ ἐὰν ὁ υἱὸς
ἀποκαλύψῃ
»· ἀποκαλύπτει δὲ διὰ πνεύματος ἁγίου.

Epiphanius Panarion Volume 2, page 34, line 17

πάντα μοι παρεδόθη ὑπὸ τοῦ πατρός μου, καὶ οὐδεὶς ἔγνω τὸν πατέρα,
εἰ μὴ ὁ υἱός, καὶ τὸν υἱόν, εἰ μὴ ὁ πατὴρ καὶ ᾧ ἂν ὁ υἱὸς ἀποκαλύψῃ».

Epiphanius Panarion (= Adversus haereses)
Volume 2, page 321, line 25
ἐπειδὴ γάρ
»οὐδεὶς οἶδε τὸν υἱὸν εἰ μὴ ὁ πατὴρ καὶ τὸν πατέρα οὐδεὶς οἶδεν εἰ
μὴ ὁ υἱὸς καὶ ᾧ ἐὰν ἀποκαλύψῃ», οὐδεὶς οὖν γνώσεται αὐτόν, ἐὰν
μὴ <αὐτὸς> αὐτῷ ἀποκαλύψῃ.

Epiphanius Panarion (= Adversus haereses)
Volume 3, page 9, line 26

πάντα μοι παρεδόθη ὑπὸ τοῦ πατρός
μου, καὶ οὐδεὶς οἶδε τὸν υἱὸν εἰ μὴ ὁ πατήρ, καὶ τὸν πατέρα οὐδεὶς ἔγνω
εἰ μὴ ὁ υἱὸς καὶ ᾧ ἐὰν ὁ υἱὸς ἀποκαλύψῃ».

Epiphanius Panarion (= Adversus haereses)
Volume 3, page 318, line 22
οὐδεὶς γὰρ οἶδε τὸν πατέρα εἰ μὴ ὁ υἱός, οὐδὲ
τὸν υἱὸν εἰ μὴ ὁ πατὴρ καὶ ᾧ ἐὰν ὁ υἱὸς ἀποκαλύψῃ»· ἀποκαλύπτει δὲ
διὰ πνεύματος ἁγίου.

Epiphanius Panarion (= Adversus haereses)
Volume 3, page 371, line 20
πάντα
γὰρ παρίπταται καὶ ὑποχωρεῖ, καὶ καταλιμπάνει πᾶσαν αἰτίαν συλλο-
γιστικὴν * τῷ ἀπὸ τῆς θείας γραφῆς διδασκαλικῷ λόγῳ, τῷ «οὐδεὶς οἶδε
τὸν υἱόν, εἰ μὴ ὁ πατήρ, οὐδὲ τὸν πατέρα, εἰ μὴ ὁ υἱός, καὶ ᾧ ἐὰν ἀπο-
καλύψῃ
».
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