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of Greek education David A. deSilva, Ph.D. Ashand Theological Seminary
I. The Elaboration Pattern: A Greek Schoolbook Exercise Applied Hermogenes, Preliminary Exercises 3.7-8; 4.10: Statement of chreia (or maxim) Cause (rationale) Contrast (contrary) Comparison (analogy) Example (historical example) A judgment (quotation of authority) Concluding exhortation/restatement Pseudo-Cicero, Rhetorica ad Herennium 4.43.56-4.44.57: Theme Reason Restatement of theme in another form (with or without reasons) Contrary Comparison Historical Example Conclusion A. Hebrews 8:7-13 Thesis (8:1-2) The chief point of the things being said [is this]: We have a high priest of this kind, who sat at the right hand of the throne of the majesty in the heavenly places, a minister of the holy places, indeed, of the true tent that the Lord, not a human being, pitched. “Rationale,” introducing new topic to be treated in 9:11-10:10 (8:3) For (ga&r) every high priest is ordained to offer gifts and sacrifices, whence it was necessary for this one also to have something to offer up. Contrary, with rationale and authority (8:4-5) If, then, he were upon earth, he would not be a priest, there being those who offer gifts according to the Law, who serve in a model and shadow of the heavenly places, just as Moses was commanded as he was about to finish the tent: for ( ga&r) he said, “See that you make all things in accordance with the exemplar shown to you on the mountain.” Restatement of Thesis, with a supplement (8:6) And now he has received a more distinguished ministry to the degree that he is also the mediator of a better covenant, which is established as law on the basis of better promises. Contrary, confirming supplement (8:7) For (ga&r) if that first one had been faultless, a place would not have been sought out for a second. Argument from ancient authority (8:8-12) For (ga&r), finding fault with them, he says: “Behold! The days are coming, says the Lord, and I will establish a new covenant over the house of Israel and the house of Judah,
Shall we not much more be subject to the Father of spirits and live? For our earthly fathers disciplined us for a short time at their pleasure. Maxim: (12:11) For the moment all discipline seems painful rather than pleasant. nor lose courage when you are punished by him. then you Are illegitimate children and not sons. Thesis: (12:5-6) For the Lord disciplines him whom he loves. which all experience. do not regard lightly the formative discipline (paidei/a) of the Lord. God is treating you as sons. Later it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it. . nor lose courage while being reproved by him.” Conclusion.not in accordance with the covenant which I made with their forebears in the day of my taking them by their hand to lead them out of the land of Egypt. Example: (12:9-10) We respect earthly fathers who discipline us. And chastens every son whom he receives. 77-78): Introduction: (Heb. and the thing that is growing obsolete and old is on the verge of disappearing. Hebrews 12:5-11 Burton Mack’s Analysis (Rhetoric and the New Testament. Argument: Example: (12:7c) For what son is there whom his father does not discipline? Opposite: (12:8) If you are left without discipline.” Paraphrase: (12:7a-b) It is for discipline that you have to endure. 12:5a) You have forgotten the exhortation which addresses you as sons: Thesis (Exhortation): (12:5b) “My son.. David deSilva’s analysis (based on Perseverance in Gratitude. B. affirming supplement (8:13) In saying “new” he makes the first one obsolete. that we may share his holiness. do not regard lightly the discipline of the Lord. 12:5) Have you forgotten the exhortation which addresses you as sons? “My son. 447-455): Introduction: (Heb. he disciplines (paideu&ei).. Rationale: (12:6) For (ga&r) whom the Lord loves.. Reason: (12:10) But he disciplines us for our good.
I prefer to translate u(pome/nete as an imperative in light of the broader context of paraenesis in this chapter (see the commands in 12:1. does not seem to be joyful.3 But he [disciplines us] for our benefit. while it is present. Greek educational philosophy A.2 Restatement of Rationale: (12:7b) God is treating you as sons and daughters.de/).7). Hebrews 12:11 and Isocrates’s maxim Hermogenes recites this maxim in his Preliminary Exercises and employs it as the chreia around which he develops his sample elaboration: “Isocrates said that the root of education is bitter but its fruit is sweet” (3. Preliminary Exercises 3.. 3. that we may share his holiness. “He learned (e1maqen) obedience from the things he suffered [or. Conclusion (incorporating a maxim): (12:11) All formative discipline (paidei/a). which he included as part of the “introduction.” 2 The form u(pome/nete could be read as an indicative verb. shall we not much more be subject to the Father of spirits and live? Rationale: (12:10) For (ga&r) they disciplined (e0pai/deuon) us for a few days as seemed best to them. The expansive paraphrasing of a chreia was itself a facet of the preliminary exercises (Hermogenes. but grievous. as does Mack. experienced. no gain” 1. . The ga&r offers a clear signal that a rationale is introduced with the beginning of 12:10 in the form of an antithesis (me/n. . Comparison: (12:9-10) Since we have had our biological fathers as educators ( paideuta_j) and showed reverence. 17 [though i1ste may also be either imperative or indicative]) and the particular context of elaborating a hortatory thesis (12:5). Exercises 3.”1 Restatement of Thesis (Exhortation): (12:7a) Endure for the sake of formative discipline ( paidei/a).7. but later it yields the peaceful fruit ( karpo_n) of righteousness to those who have been trained through it. II.. though there is no defense for introducing a helping verb of “compulsion” into the second part of this sentence (“you have to endure”). Confirmation of Rationale: (12:7c) For who is the son or daughter whom a father does not discipline (paideu&ei)? Contrary: (12:8) If you are without formative discipline (paidei/a). 12. 3 Perhaps it was only by mechanical error that Mack postpones labeling the beginning of this rationale until the second half of 12:10.103-104). e1paqen]” (Heb 1 The appearance of the inferential particle ga&r clearly identifies this as a rationale: Mack has missed the fact that the actual “thesis” appeared in Heb 12:5b.and chastens every child whom he receives. “No pain. 14. then you are bastards and not [legitimate] sons and daughters. Theon. of which all [children] have become partakers.
16. 51. 152 n. no mild enforcer of virtues. 158 n. e1maqen . The paternal training of God can be compared with the way in which Spartan fathers whipped their children in public as a demonstration of the child’s attainment of the prized virtue of endurance ( De prov. Stages of instruction “Concerning [Jesus’ high priesthood] we have a lengthy and difficult-to-understand account to speak. God ‘tests. Ag... See Aeschylus. hardens. e1paqen . Nicolaus of Myra. Croy. 42) . “The root of education (paidei/a) is bitter but its fruit (karpo&j) is sweet” (attributed to Isocrates. For everyone who partakes of milk is unskilled in the word of righteousness. that you should put off reforming yourself until he arrives? You are no longer a lad. to be weaned and to partake of more solid food?” (Diss. Hebrews. God “‘rears’ (educat) the wise person like a son (2. Attridge. 159 n. since you have become sluggish in hearing. What sort of teacher. Endurance. Preliminary Exercises 3. Herodotus.5). just as strict fathers do” ( De prov... for he or she is an infant. examines. whom that magnificent parent. 192. 59) “You have received the philosophical principles which you ought to accept.1.207 (further. “On the Chreia” 23-77. you again have need for someone to continue to teach you the rudimentary principles of the primary level of the oracles of God. 2. For indeed.6). like children.” “Those whom God approves and loves (Hos . and you have accepted them.5:8). Hermogenes.11-12).7).” ( Ench.” 72-73. deus . and exercises” (De prov. 83-84. 1. and prepares’ the sage for Himself (1. Endurance in Suffering. Aphthonius. though having the obligation to be teachers on account of the length of time spent. 196-214). at this late date. 139-144). quos amat). Attridge. 4. God toughens. but already a full-grown adult.. B. Hist. then. do you still wait for. 2.” (Heb 5:11-14) “Are you not willing.6). who have their faculties trained through constant practice for the discernment of the noble and the base. and you have come to stand in need of milk rather than solid food. De usu 35-64.. “On the Chreia. Attridge. 177.39. But solid food is for the mature. 4.7... 1. see also Priscian. 133-134). The sage is God’s “pupil. Hebrews.. educates quite sternly. Hebrews 12:5-11 and Seneca’s De providentia (see Croy. Hebrews. imitator and true progeny.
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