Monday, July 30, 2007

Love God and Others: ΑΓΑΠΗΣΕΙΣ

The blog title ΑΓΑΠΗΣΕΙΣ is the Greek word for "you will love." It's the word used in the Greek New Testament (e.g. Mark 12.30) when referencing the Hebrew confession of faith—the Shema’—in Deuteronomy 6.4-5. I have chosen ΑΓΑΠΗΣΕΙΣ as the title of this blog because its double use in Mark 12.30-31 summarizes what this blog is about:

  • knowing God's word
  • in order to love God
  • and love others
In Mark 12.29-31, Jesus anwers the question, "What is the greatest commandment?" He responds by quoting the Shema’ from Deuteronomy 6.4 that pious Jews would have confessed every morning and evening:
Hear, oh Israel! The Lord our God, the Lord is one.
Jesus continues from Deuteronomy 6.5:
And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind, and with all your strength.
While the Hebrew only has a tripartite division of the person, Jesus adds the 'mind' as a fourth aspect with which to love God. The meaning is the same: love God with all of who you are.

In Mark 12.31 Jesus continues with the second greatest commandment:
The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.
This blog is devoted to the interpretation of scripture in order to love God and love others. Some of my primary interests to be included in this blog are...
  • biblical exegesis
  • biblical theology
  • use of OT in the NT
  • Greek language
  • Hebrew language
  • Bible translation
  • linguistics
  • discourse analysis
  • cognitive semantics
  • the Letter of James
  • textual criticism
  • teaching
  • preaching

Many of my interests are quite academic in nature, yet I do not wish to live in my own little world of books and research. I want to pursue these interests in such a way that I love God with all of who I am and also love others more than myself. Thus, in this blog I wish to love God and others by sharing my everyday thoughts concerning the above disciplines.

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