Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Archive for the ‘Ephesians’ Category


9780801027895

.

The following excerpt is from James L. Resseguie‘s book, “Narrative Criticism of the New Testament”, p. 58-60.  The excerpt is part of the book’s explanation for  “Chiasm (Chiasmus)”.

The book can be found here at Google Books, and here at Amazon.

The examples are short, but I enjoyed them.  I particularly liked his treatment of Luke 22:42 and Ephesians 1:2; 6:23-24.  Hopefully you’ll enjoy them as well.  🙂

The word chiasm is derived from the Greek letter chi (written X), which symbolizes the crossover pattern of words, phrases, clauses, or ideas that are repeated in reverse order.  The simplest type of chiasm is A B B’ A’ – a structure that comes full circle by highlighting key concepts in reverse order.  A chiastic pattern in Mark 2:27, for instance, keeps the reader’s or hearer’s attention focused on the main concepts.

A  The sabbath was made

B  for humankind

B’  not humankind

A’  for the sabbath.

Chiasms may draw attention to a theological or ideological perspective.  Jesus’ prayer in the garden of Gethsemane is an example of literary artistry at its best.  The literary form reinforces the theological perspective.  In Luke 22:42, for example:

A  Father, if you are willing.

B  remove this cup from me;

B’  yet not my will

A’  but yours be done.

The first person singular (me, my) is placed within the second person singular (you, yours), which visually underscores that Jesus’ will is completely enclosed within the will of the Father.  This becomes a model prayer for all: our will needs to be conformed to God’s will, not the other way around.

Paul uses chiasms to wrap together an entire book with key theological concepts.  In the Letter to the Ephesians he brackets his correspondence with the words “grace” and “peace” (also in 2 Thess. 1:2 and 3:16, 18).

A    Grace to you

B  and peace

B’  Peace be to the whole community. …

A’  Grace be with all who have an undying love for our Lord Jesus Christ

(Eph. 1:2; 6:23, 24)

Paul comes full circle, underscoring an important theological perspective: where there is grace, there is peace, and where there is peace, there is evidence of God’s grace.  Paul also uses interlocking chiasms to highlight the mystery of the Christian faith.  In 1 Tim. 3:16, for example, an interlocking pattern  explains “the mystery of our religion.”

[Jesus] was revealed in flesh,

vindicated in spirit,

seen by angels,

proclaimed among Gentiles,

believed in throughout the world,

taken up in glory.

Two sets of overlapping chiasms bring two separate worlds together – this world and the world above.  One set – flesh (A), spirit (B), angels (B’), Gentiles (A’) – is joined by a second set – angels (A) Gentiles (B), world (B’), glory (A’).  The interlocking pattern suggests that Jesus brings together in balanced harmony two worlds that were separated or at odds with each other.

Nice!

Advertisements

Read Full Post »


 

A    14  For this reason, I bow my knees before the Father,

B    15  from whom every family / [space:]  in heaven and on earth derives its name,

C    16  that He would grant you, according to the riches of His glory,

D    to be strengthened with power through His Spirit in the inner man;

E    17  so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith;

F    and that you, being rooted and grounded in love,

G    18  may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth,

F’   19  and to know the love of Christ which surpasses knowledge,

E’   that you may be filled up to all the fulness of God.

D’   20  Now to Him who is able to do exceeding abundantly beyond all that we ask or think, according to the power / that works within us,

C’   21  to Him be the glory in the church and in Christ Jesus

B’   to all generations / [time:]  forever and ever.

A’   Amen.

Comments:

This is the third of 3 chiasmi in a row in Ephesians.  Here are the links to all three:

Ephesians 2:11-22

Ephesians 3:1-13

Ephesians 3:14-21

Read Full Post »


 

3:1  For this reason

 A    I, Paul, the prisoner of Christ Jesus for the sake of you Gentiles–

 B    1    2  if indeed you have heard of the stewardship

2    of God’s grace

3    which was given to me

4    for you;

5    3  that by revelation there was made known to me the mystery, as I wrote before in brief.  4  And by referring to this, when you read you can understand my insight into the mystery of Christ,

6    5  which in other generations was not made known to the sons of men,

7    as it has now been revealed

8    to His holy apostles and prophets in the Spirit;

> B last line:   9    6  to be specific, THAT THE GENTILES ARE FELLOW HEIRS AND FELLOW MEMBERS OF THE BODY, and fellow partakers of the promise in Christ Jesus / through the gospel,

B’    1    7  of which I was made a minister,

2    according to the gift of God’s grace

3    which was given to me according to the working of His power.  8  To me, the very least of all saints, this grace was given,

4    to preach to the Gentiles the unfathomable riches of Christ,

5    9  and to bring to light what is the administration of the mystery

6    which for ages has been hidden in God, who created all things;

7    10  in order that the manifold wisdom of God might now be made known

8    through the church to the rulers and the authorities in the heavenly places.

−> B’ last line:   9    11  This was in accordance with the eternal purpose which He carried out in Christ Jesus our Lord,  12  in whom we have boldness and confident access through faith in Him.

 A’   13  Therefore I ask you not to lose heart at my tribulations / on your behalf, for they are your glory.

 14a  For this reason …

Comments:

This is the second of 3 chiasmi in a row in Ephesians.  Here are the links to all three:

Ephesians 2:11-22

Ephesians 3:1-13

Ephesians 3:14-21

Read Full Post »


A    [Me:  Gentiles and Jews were separated by, e.g., circumcision:]   10  For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.  11  Therefore remember, that formerly you, the Gentiles in the flesh, who are called “Uncircumcision” by the so-called “Circumcision,” which is performed in the flesh by human hands —

B    [Me:  Gentiles ‘separated’ from God:]    12  remember that you were at that time separate from Christ, excluded from the commonwealth of Israel, and strangers to the covenants of promise, having no hope and without God in the world.

 C    13  But now in Christ Jesus you who formerly were far off have been brought near

D    by the blood of Christ.

E    14  For He Himself is our peace,

F   who made both groups into one,

G   and broke down the barrier of the dividing wall,

H    15  by abolishing in His flesh the enmity,

G’   which is the Law of commandments contained in ordinances,

F’   that in Himself He might make the two into one new man,

E’   thus establishing peace,

D’   16  and might reconcile them both in one body to God through the cross, by it having put to death the enmity,

C’   17  AND HE CAME AND PREACHED PEACE TO YOU WHO WERE FAR AWAY, AND PEACE TO THOSE WHO WERE NEAR;

B’    [Me: Gentiles now united with God:]    18  for through Him we both have our access in one Spirit to the Father.  19  So then you are no longer strangers and aliens, but you are fellow citizens with the saints, and are of God’s household,

 A’    [Me: Gentiles and Jews are now united, “fitted together”, “growing into a holy temple in the Lord”:]    20  having been built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Christ Jesus Himself being the corner stone,  21  in whom the whole building, being fitted together is growing into a holy temple in the Lord;  22  in whom you also are being built together into a dwelling of God in the Spirit.

.

_________

.

Comments: This is a beautiful chiasmus written by Paul in his letter to the Ephesians.  (In my opinion, there are a number of chiasmi in Ephesians.) This chiasmus is about ‘breaking down the barrier of the dividing wall’ (G), which is “the Law of commandments contained in ordinances” (e.g., circumcision), (G’).  This breaking down of the dividing wall was accomplished by “abolishing in [Jesus’] flesh the enmity”, via the cross (H).  The ultimate solution to the problem of division is the cross.  This is appropriate.  The center, of course, contains the most important element in a chiasmus.  The cross is that strong element – the solution to the problem.  Together, G/H/G’, form a solid overall center.  …  The cross is also emphasized in D/D’.

.

_________

.

This is the first of 3 chiasmi in a row in Ephesians.  Here are the links to all three:

Ephesians 2:11-22

Ephesians 3:1-13

Ephesians 3:14-21

_________

To  be continued: ***How G/G’ matches with A/A’. ***An inside-out reading.

Read Full Post »


In this entry I’ll be placing lots of small chiasmi.  Small chiasmi are not my primary focus so it may take some time to ‘fill this up’.

.

_____

.

Old Testament:

Genesis:

1:27a

A    God created man

B    in His own image,

B’   in the image of God

A’   He created him

2:4

A    This is the account of the heavens

B    and the earth

C    when they were created,

C’   in the day that the LORD God made

B’   earth

A’   and heaven.

6:8-9

A    8  But Noah  /  found favor

B    in the eyes of the Lord

C    9  These are the records of the generations of Noah.

D    Noah was a righteous man,

D’   blameless

C’   in his time  [Me: ‘among his peers’];

B’   with God

A’   Noah  / walked

9:6a

A    “Whoever sheds

B    the blood

C    of man

C’   by man

B’   his blood

A’   shall be shed …”

12:16

Therefore he  [Me: Pharoah]  treated Abram well for her  [Me: Sarai’s]  sake; and gave him

A    sheep and oxen

B    and  [Me: male]  donkeys

C    and male  [Me: servants]

C’   and female servants

B’   and female donkeys

A’   and camels.

 Job

32:6-10

6  So Elihu the son of Barachel the Buzite spoke out and said,

A    “I am young in years and you are old; Therefore I was shy and afraid to tell you what I think.

B    7  “I thought age should speak, And increased years should teach wisdom.

C    8  “But it is a spirit in man, And the breath of the Almighty gives them understanding.

B’   9  “The abundant in years may not be wise, Nor may elders understand justice.

A’   10  “So I say, ‘Listen to me, I too will tell what I think.’

Psalms

19:1

A    The heavens

B    declare

C    the glory of God

C’   the work of his hands

B’   proclaim

A’   the sky.

 72:1-2

A    1  Give the king Your justice, O God,

B    and Your righteousness to the king’s son. 

B’   2  May he judge Your people with righteousness

A’   and Your afflicted with justice.

103:1

A    Bless, O my soul,

B    the Lord

C    And all that is within me,

B’   the name of His holiness,

A’   bless, O my soul.

Proverbs

10:15

A    The wealth

B    of a rich man

C    is his fortress;

C’   the ruin

B’   of the poor

A’   is their poverty

11:19-20

A    19  He who is steadfast in righteousness will attain to life,

B    And he who pursues evil will bring about his own death.

B’   20  The perverse in heart are an abomination to the LORD,

A’   But the blameless in their walk are His delight.

Isaiah

5:20

A    Woe to those who call evil

B    good,

B’   and good

A    evil;

A    Who substitute darkness

B    for light

B’   and light

A’   for darkness;

A    Who substitute bitter

B    for sweet,

B’    and sweet

A’    for bitter!

6:10

A    “Render the hearts of this people insensitive,

B    Their ears dull,

C    And their eyes dim,

C’   Lest they see with their eyes,

B’   Hear with their ears,

A’   Understand with their hearts,

And return and be healed.”

Jeremiah

17:1-3

A    1  The sin of Judah

B    is written down

C    with an iron stylus;

C’   with a diamond point

B’   it is engraved upon the tablet of their heart, and on the horns of their altars,

A’   2  As they remember their children, So they remember their altars and their Asherim By green trees on the high hills … 3 … your high places for sin

Joel

2:28-29

A    28  It will come about after this

B    That I will pour out My Spirit on all mankind;

C    And your sons and daughters will prophesy,

D    Your old men  /  will dream dreams,

D’   Your young men  /  will see visions.

C’   29  Even on the male and female servants

B’   I will pour out My Spirit

A’   in those days.

Hosea

13:14

A    Shall I ransom them from the power of Sheol?

B    Shall I redeem them from death?

B’   O Death, where are your thorns?

A’   O Sheol, where is your sting?

Amos

2:11-12

A    11  “Then I raised up some of your sons to be prophets

B    And some of your young men to be Nazirites.

C    Is this not so, O sons of Israel?” declares the LORD.

B’   12  “But you made the Nazirites drink wine,

A’   And you commanded the prophets saying, ‘You shall not prophesy!’

5:24

A    Let roll down

B    like waters

C    justice

C’   and righteousness

B’   like a stream

A’   ever flowing

.

_____

.

New Testament:

 Matthew

19:30

A    “But many who are first

B    will be last;

B’   and the last,

A’   first.”

23:12

A    “And whoever exalts himself

B    shall be humbled;

B’   and whoever humbles himself

A’   shall be exalted.

Mark

8:35-38

34  And He summoned the crowd with His disciples, and said to them, “If anyone wishes to come after Me, he must deny himself, and take up his cross and follow Me. 

A    35  For whoever wishes to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake and the gospel’s will save it. 

B    [Me: question:]  36  For what does it profit a man to gain the whole world, and forfeit his soul  /  ? 

B’   [Me: question:]  37  For what will a man give in exchange for his soul  /  ? 

A’   38  For whoever is ashamed of Me and My words in this adulterous and sinful generation, the Son of Man will also be ashamed of him when He comes in the glory of His Father with the holy angels.”

10:29b, 30, 31

28  Peter began to say to Him, “Behold, we have left everything and followed You.”  29  Jesus said, “Truly I say to you, there is no one who has left

A    house

B    or brothers or sisters

C    or mother

C’   or father

B’   or children

A’   or farms,

for My sake and for the gospel’s sake,  30  but that he will receive a hundred times as much now in the present age,

A   houses

B    and brothers and sisters

C    and mothers

B’   and children

A’   and farms,

along with persecutions; and in the age to come, eternal life.  31  But many

A    who are first

B    will be last,

B’   and the last,

A’   first.”

11:9b-10

And many spread their coats in the road, and others spread leafy branches which they had cut from the fields.  9  Those who went in front and those who followed were shouting:

A    “Hosanna!

B    Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord

B’   10  Blessed is the coming kingdom of our father David;

A’   Hosanna in the highest!”

Luke

16:13

A    “No servant can serve two masters;

B    for either he will hate the one,

C    and love the other,

C’   or else he will hold to one,

B’   and despise the other.

A’   You cannot serve God and mammon.”

Romans

8:38-39a

38  For I am convinced that

A    neither death,

B    nor life,

C    nor angels, nor rulers,

D    nor things present,

D’   nor things to come,

C’   nor powers

B’   39  nor height,

A’   nor depth,

nor any other created thing, will be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

2 Corinthians

8:9

For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ,

A    that though He was rich,

B    yet for your sake He became poor,

B’   that you through His poverty

A’   might become rich.

Ephesians

2:8-9

A    8  For by grace you have been saved through faith;

B    and that not of yourselves,

C    it is the gift of God;

B’   9  not as a result of works,

A’   that no one should boast.

Philippians

1:15-17

A    15  Some, to be sure, are preaching Christ even from envy and strife,

B    but some also from good will;

B’   16  the latter do it out of love, knowing that I am appointed for the defense of the gospel;

A’    17  the former proclaim Christ out of selfish ambition, rather than from pure motives, thinking to cause me distress in my imprisonment.

1 Thessalonians

5:23

A    Now the God of peace Himself,

B    sanctify you completely

C    and entirely your spirit and soul and body

B’   without blame

A’    at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.

1 John

3:9

A    No one who is born of God

B    practices sin,

C    because His seed abides in him;

B’   and he cannot sin,

A’   because he is born of God.

Revelation

3:7

“And to the angel of the church in Philadelphia write: He who is holy, who is true, who has the key of David,

A    who opens

B    and no one will shut,

B’   and who shuts

A’   and no one opens,

says this …

Read Full Post »

%d bloggers like this: