"You Proclaim The Lord's Death": 1 Corinthians 11:26 and PauVs Understanding of Worship

Beverly Roberts Gaventa

In 1 Corinthians 11 Paul leaves aside the nature of relationships between believers and unbelievers, which dominates chapters 5-10, and takes up issues that arise from worship at Corinth. Although attempts to hear and understand Paul's conversations with believers are never easy, here the difficulties become extreme. In part that is because we bring to this text our own conflicting convictions about the place of women in worship, the right observance of the Lord's Supper, and the meaning of spiritual gifts. Such convictions inevitably inhibit our listening to the text on its own terms. These difficulties do not stem exclusively from our contemporary disputes, however. They also arise from problems inherent in the text itself. The first issue Paul takes up in 1 Corinthians 11 provides an obvious illustration of both sorts of difficulties. Contemporary discussion about women in church leadership has pushed 1 Corinthians 11:2-16 to the forefront of discussion. Despite intense exegetical scrutiny, however, it remains unclear exactly what situation stands behind Paul's argument for the veiling of women or what he intends by certain parts of that argument.1 Paul's discussion of the Lord's Supper in 1 Corinthians 11:17-34, which is the focus of this article, is subject to similar difficulties. Nearly two thousand years of Christian discussion of the Supper meet up with the ambiguities of Paul's language to create a multitude of interpretations. These interpretations can be roughly divided into two approaches. The dominant approach concerns itself with the tradition Paul cites in verses 23-26 and is primarily interested in Paul's theological understanding of the Supper and in the relationship between this tradition and traditions about the Last Supper that are found in the Gospels. Prominent examples of this approach are Hans Lietzmann's Mass and Lord's Supper2 and Joachim Jeremías' The Eucharistie Words of Jesus.* The second approach has emerged more recently and is less concerned with questions of the meal's origin and meaning than with its Corinthian context. This approach asks how the Corinthians are observing the Supper and devotes major attention to problems of social setting as reflected in verses 17-22 and 27-34. Gerd Theissen's work, recently translated as The Social Setting of Pauline Christianity: Essays on Corinth,4 is a significant example of this growing area of


interest. Tb a large extent these divergent approaches reflect the changing interests of New Testament scholars. Earlier generations understood their task as one of describing the thought of various New Testament writers and tracing the history of ideas and practices. Although that task has by no means been completed or neglected, contemporary scholars have expanded the questions they bring to the text and thereby include questions of social setting that previously received less attention. It would be a mistake to conclude that these two approaches merely represent two scholarly fads. The differences between them reflect not only two sets of questions brought to the text but a problem that exists within the text: how does the traditional material that Paul employs in verses 23-26 relate to the problems of the Corinthian community to which he refers in verses 17-22 and 2734? In the early part of this century Johannes Weiss recognized this difficulty. He observed that social matters dominate the beginning and the ending of this text, sacramental matters dominate its center, and how the two are connected is left unclear.5 Weiss was content, as most scholars have been, to conclude with the general observation that the conduct of the Corinthians indicated that they did not understand the nature of the meal. Albert Schweitzer commented similarly: "Paul calls the historic meal of Jesus with his disciples to their remembrance, with a view to making clear to them the solemn ceremonial character of the common meal."e This conclusion is surely right, yet it is far from satisfying. Although Paul interprets the celebration of the Lord's Supper at Corinth as a misunderstanding of the meal (cf. 11:20), we would like to be more specific about the nature of the misunderstanding. Does the text offer us any clue to a fuller perception of the connection between the setting at Corinth and Paul's introduction of the tradition? We might expect to find a connection when Paul introduces the tradition. Such is the case, for example, in 1 Corinthians 15, where Paul introduces traditions about the resurrection appearances by claiming that they are something which must be believed (1 Cor. 15:1-2). In Chapter 11, however, he takes up the tradition of the Lord's Supper quite abruptly by moving directly from an indictment of the Corinthians to the statement: "For I received from the Lord what I also delivered to you." In this instance the clue we seek comes not with the introduction of the tradition but with its conclusion: "For as often as you eat this bread and drink the cup, you proclaim the Lord's death until he comes." It is generally agreed that Paul's quotation of traditional material concludes with verse 25. In what follows, we will see that verse 26 serves not simply as the recapitulation of the tradition but as the basis for the connection between the tradition and the difficulties in the Corinthian congregation's practice of the Lord's Supper.

"You Proclaim the Lord's Death": 1 Corinthians 11:26 and PauVs Understanding of Worship 1
Review and Expositor

Moreover, verse 26 connects Paul's discussion of the Lord's Supper to issues he has raised throughout this letter. Such claims for the importance of 1 Corinthians 11:26 will seem odd in the light of the exegetical approaches described above. Neither approach pays particular attention to this verse. Those interested in the history of the Lord's Supper overlook verse 26 because it is not part of the traditional material Qn the other hand, those interested in the social setting find nothing here that aids in the reconstruction of that setting. When the verse is discussed in commentaries, it is usually read as a reminder to the Corinthians that when they observe the Lord's Supper they also preach about the meaning of Jesus' death ("You proclaim the Lord's death") and that they will continue to observe the Supper in this way until the parousia ("until he comes"). We will discuss the reasons for this interpretation below. What is important here is to notice that, on this reading, 11:26 is superfluous. Having introduced a problem in quite dramatic terms ("It is not the Lord's Supper that you eat Do you not have houses to eat and drink in?") and having reminded his audience of the words of Jesus about this meal, Paul concludes the use of the traditional material by reiterating what is, according to the standard interpretation, already known by all: Preaching accompanies the meal, and the observance of the meal continues until Jesus returns. On the face of it, this reading fails to convince, to say the least. In order to respond to this widely held view of the verse,7 we will study it in some detail and then reflect on its role in the context of chapter 11 and, indeed, in the context of the letter as a whole. Verse 26 begins with a recapitulation of the tradition Paul has just concluded: "For as often as you eat this bread and drink the cup." "As often as" (hosakis) repeats the aclverb found in verse 25 but nowhere else in Paul The expression "you eat this bread and drink the cup" effectively summarizes the tradition of verses 23-25. Indeed, with the exception of "you eat" (esthieinf, every word in this expression repeats a word in the earlier tradition. Linking this recapitulation to what precedes is the conjunction for (gar). Paul generally uses this very common conjunction to provide the reason or cause of something, as the following examples illustrate: Without ceasing I mention you always in my prayers, asking that somehow by God's will I may now at last succeed in coming to you. For igarf I long to see you, that I may impart to you some spiritual gift to strengthen you... (Rom. l:9b-ll). When I came to you, brethren, I did not come proclaiming to you the testimony of God in lofty words or wisdom. For [gar] I decided to know nothing among you except Jesus Christ and him crucified (1 Cor. 2:1-2). For I would have you know, brethren, that the gospel which was preached 379

by me is not man's gospel. For \gar] I did not receive it from man, nor was I taught it, but it came through a revelation of Jesus Christ (Gal. 1:11-12). Although commentators have acknowledged that for (gar) provides the grounding for something already said, few have asked precisely how for functions in this context.8 That is a question to which we shall return after looking more closely at the remainder of the verse. Following this recapitulation of the tradition, we come to the main clause, which the RSV translates "you proclaim the Lord's death until he comes." This translation alters the word order of the Greek text. "The death of the Lord you proclaim until he comes" is a more literal translation. How significant is this word order? Paul often follows the Semitic practice of placing the verb first. We would thus expect to find the word order of the RSV, "you proclaim the death." Elsewhere, when he reverses this customary word order, he seems to do so in order to emphasize the word placed first.9 For example, in Romans 11:13 we find, "But to you I speak, the Gentiles," and in 1 Corinthians 13:1, "If with the tongues of men I speak" (translations mine). We may suspect, therefore, that the phrase "the death of the Lord" receives special stress, although it would be a mistake to lean heavily on this change from normal word order.10 Whether the word order is significant or not, the phrase itself clearly is. Paul speaks of neither the "gospel" nor the "death and resurrection" but of the "death of the Lord" (ton thanaton tou kuriou). This exact wording occurs nowhere else in Paul's letters, although he does use similar expressions (cf. Rom. 5:10; 6:3-5; Phil. 2:8; 3:10). Even the word death (thanatos) appears infrequently in 1 Corinthians, primarily in chapter 15. The phrase "the death of the Lord" does recall earlier portions of this letter, however. In 1:18 Paul writes that "the word of the cross" (ho logos ho tou staurou) is God's power for those who are being saved. Shortly thereafter he characterizes the subject of Christian preaching as "Christ crucified" (2:2). In other words, language about the crucifixion or death of Jesus occupies a primary place at the outset of this letter. That Paul in 11:26 connects the bread and cup of the Lord's Supper with the "death of the Lord" does not mean that the Supper remembers only the bare fact of Jesus' death. On the other hand, the impact of the phrase "death of the Lord" should not be diminished by assuming that the resurrection is included in this phrase.11 In my judgment, the phrase "the death of the Lord" refers to Jesus' death in all its significance as the scandalous event in which all human values and expectations are overturned (cf. 1 Cor. 1:23). How this relates to the larger context of 1 Corinthians we can best appreciate after examining the remainder of the verse. "The death of the Lord" is, as we have already seen, the object of "you proclaim" (kataggellein). Here we arrive at the major exegetical problem of verse 26. Does the phrase "you proclaim" refer to proclamation that occurs within the Lord's Supper (that is, the Supper itself is a proclamation), or does

"You Proclaim the Lord's Death": 1 Corinthians 11:26 and Paul's Understanding of Worship
Review and Expositor

the phrase refer to a proclamation accompanying the Supper (that is, an explicit verbal proclamation or homily)?12 By far the most frequent response to this question is the latter. The conventional reading of the verse, as described above, is that some proclamation about the meaning of the Lord's death occurs in connection with the observance of the Lord's Supper. Many who take this position give no reason for doing so.18 Others invoke the "word character" of the expression "you proclaim," without explaining what that means.14 Hans Conzelmann simply states that Paul must have intended an explicit proclamation, "since there is no such thing as a sacrament without accompanying proclamation."16 It is difficult either to understand or to respond to arguments of this nature. The strongest argument for kataggeUein as verbal proclamation accompanying the observance of the Supper is lexicographical. In the Theological Dictionary of the New Testament, Schniewind argues that kataggeUein always appears in connection with verbal pronouncements.16 KataggeUein is also associated by some with the Hebrew verb higgid (narrate, tell), from which the noun haggadah is derived. Hence, what Paul refers to is a narrative of the death of Jesus and the significance of that death, a Christian counterpart to the Passover haggadah.17 The notion that the Greek verb kataggeUein corresponds to the Hebrew higgid is an interesting one. Scholars who make this claim usually refer to articles by G. H. Box and Douglas Jones written several decades ago.18 Neither author, however, offered evidence for a connection between the two verbs. Indeed, such evidence would be difficult to produce, since kataggeUein appears rarely in the Septuagint, and nowhere does it translate higgid or any word related to higgid The argument that general usage of kataggeUein requires a verbal pronouncement also does not withstand close scrutiny. Elsewhere in the letters of Paul kataggeUein does consistently refer to proclamation and seems to be the equivalent of euaggeUzesthai (to preach the good news). The word only appears five other times, however (Rom. 1:8; 1 Cor. 2:1; 9:14; Phil. 1:17; 1:18), which should caution against concluding that it must mean "preach" in our text as well.19 Outside of Paul, kataggeUein occurs only in Acts, where it characterizes the giving of promises to Israel (Acts 3:24) and the announcing of the gospel and its consequences (Acts 4:2; 13:5; 13:38; 15:36; 16:17; 16:21; 17:3; 17:13; 17:23; 26:23). Though in other Hellenistic texts kataggeUein most often has this same meaning of announcing or proclaiming, there are some instructive exceptions to that usage. The author of 2 Maccabees tells the story of Nicanor, an agent of the Seleucid rulers who attempts to take Jewish prisoners and sell them as slaves. Under the leadership of the Maccabean family, the Jews soundly defeat Nicanor, and he flees the country alone. The account concludes with this comment: 381

Thus he who had undertaken to secure tribute for the Romans by the capture of the people of Jerusalem proclaimed (kataggeUein) that the Jews had a defender, and that therefore the Jews were invulnerable, because they followed the laws ordained by him (2 Mace. 8:36). The context makes it obvious that Nicanor did not travel around preaching about the God of the Jews. Instead, his defeat and flight constituted such an announcement or demonstration. KataggeUein appears elsewhere in ways that may refer to proclamation by deeds rather than by speech. For example, in his discussion of the significance of the number seven, Philo of Alexandria writes that seven brings perfection by demonstrating (kataggeUein) two sorts of correspondences (On the Creation, 106). Elsewhere, when Philo criticizes myths in which the earliest humans are depicted bearing weapons, he comments that it would be better if the herald staff, the symbol of peace, would spring forth and demonstrate (kataggeUein) peace to all people (The Eternity of the World, 68). Similar usage is found in Josephus' narrative about the patriarch Joseph. When Joseph has a dream about his future, his father Jacob rejoices because of the good fortune it proclaims (kataggeUein; Antiquities 2:15). Again, when Joseph interprets Pharaoh's dream, he describes the ears of corn as proclaiming (kataggeUein) famine for Egypt (Antiquities 2:85). These examples, although they are admittedly exceptions to the normal usage of kataggeUein, should make us wary of the notion that kataggeUein in 1 Corinthians 11:26 must imply a sermon that accompanies the Lord's Supper. It may be that Paul means that the Supper itself constitutes a proclamation. That understanding of this verse is entirely consistent with remarks Paul makes elsewhere concerning the proclamation character of action and faith. In 1 Thessalonians, for example, when Paul describes his experiences at Thessalonica, he remarks that he and his colleagues became the sort of people who attracted others to the gospel (1 Thess. 1:4-5). The Thessalonians, in turn, responded in a way that was an example to others: "For not only has the word of the Lord sounded forth from you in Macedonia and Achaia, but your faith in God has gone forth everywhere, so that we need not say anything" (1 Thess. 1:8). Both the actions of Paul and the response of believers in Thessalonica demonstrated the gospel. Even the context of 1 Corinthians 11:26 confirms the claim that Paul understands the observance of the Lord's Supper as a proclamation. After all,


"You Proclaim the Lord's Death": 1 Corinthians 11:26 and Paul's Understanding of Worship
Review and Expositor

what follows immediately in verses 27ff. explicitly has to do with the consequences of observing the meal in an unworthy manner. Believers who do not participate as they should are liable to the judgment of illness and death. Such a concrete notion of the negative results of misapppropriating the Supper follows easily upon verse 26, in which Paul describes a result of the right observance of the Supper. All these considerations taken together require us to reject the consensus regarding the meaning of kataggeUein in our text. Not only is it possible lexicographically that Paul understands the Supper itself as an act of proclamation, but the context and Paul's comments elsewhere make this the more compelling interpretation.90 The final clause in verse 26 specifies that proclamation via the Lord's Supper continues "until he comes" (achris hou elths). Some commentators, as noted above, see in this merely the point at which observance of the Lord's Supper terminates.21 That is, believers will no longer celebrate the meal when the parousia has occurred. At the other extreme, Jeremías understands this as a purpose clause ("in order that he might come"); thus, the supper reminds God of his promise and urges God to send Jesus.22 It is difficult to imagine that Paul would refer to the parousia as a mere deadline. Most often when he mentions the expectation of the parousia, he does so in connection with the triumph of God (1 Cor. 15:24-28) or the life of believers together with the returning Lord (1 Thess. 4:14-18). An event of such significance does not readily become a way of marking the end of a present custom. That is not to affirm Jeremías' position, however. Paul is clear that the time of the parousia is a matter of God's choosing (1 Thess. 5:1-3), not an event that can be hurried by means of human action. How are we to understand the phrase "until he comes" if it is not a deadline or a way of urging God to hasten Jesus' return? Perhaps it is, instead, a reminder to the assembled believers at Corinth that the Lord will return and that worship must be understood in light of that expectation. First Corinthians 15 indicates that they rejected the resurrection of Jesus, or at least its corporeality. They may also have rejected the belief that he would return (15:23). If so, Paul's final words in verse 26, together with the warning afterwards regarding abuse of the Supper, stood as a reminder that the manner in which the meal is observed does matter. As we pull together these various exegetical observations, verse 26 emerges in a strikingly different light. What Paul says here is that when believers celebrate the Lord's Supper they proclaim the death of the Lord in its eschatological significance. The celebration itself demonstrates the gospel. Far from being a superfluous comment that preaching accompanies the meal and that the meal will continue until Jesus' return, verse 26 announces the meaning of the Lord's Supper.

This understanding of verse 26 is important because it allows us to see more clearly the relationship between problems Paul discusses in verses 17-22 and 2734 and the tradition he cites in verses 23-25. It enables us to bridge the gap between the approach which is concerned primarily with the social setting of the meal and the one which is concerned primarily with the meaning of the meal and its historical development. Gerd Theissen has argued convincingly that conflicts had arisen concerning the Lord's Supper at Corinth as a result of tensions among those of differing social status.28 The more affluent believers not only had more food for the common meal but also food of superior quality. Because they offered their homes as a place in which the community could gather and their food for those who had little to share, they regarded their own better, more ample, portions simply as their right as hosts. Others within the community rejected the disparity created by this practice. Paul does not deny the claims of the community's patrons, who were well within the rights ascribed them by social standards of the day, but he does press for the moderation of those rights. Those who have special food which they are unwilling to distribute among the congregation should partake of it at home (w. 22, 34). The community meal is for all. We might conclude from Theissen's analysis that Paul's response to the social conflict at Corinth is merely pragmatic. Verses 23-26 indicate otherwise. Paul reminds them of the tradition concerning the meal in order to show that the meal is nothing less than an eschatological proclamation of the gospel. The words of institution in verses 23-25 do not simply remind the Corinthians that the meal originated with Jesus or that the meal, rightly celebrated, proclaims the death of the Lord. That death, in Paul's view, stands diametrically opposed to the claims of social status that were at work in the Corinthian community, l b proclaim the death of the Lord is, to say the least, not to proclaim one's own rights or prerogatives. Paul's method of addressing this issue has certain similarities to his way of approaching other issues at Corinth. In chapter 8 he introduces the problem of whether Christians may eat meat that has been sacrificed to idols. Chapter 9 concerns Paul's own freedom as an apostle and his decision to limit that freedom in order to win more people for the gospel. Then, in chapter 10 he returns to the problem of meat that has been sacrificed to idols and urges believers to modify their own rights for the sake of others (10:23-30). Similarly, the discussion of spiritual gifts in chapters 12 and 14 has at its core Paul's remarks about love and maturity in chapter 13, which provide something of a theoretical framework for the consideration of the problem. Paul's treatment of the Lord's Supper, then, follows a typical pattern in which theological warrants are placed at the center of the consideration of a "practical" issue. First Corinthians 11:26 is important for understanding how Paul's remarks on the Lord's Supper fit together. The verse is also important because it

"You Proclaim the Lord's Death": 1 Corinthians 11:26 and Paul's Understanding of Worship
Review and Expositor

connects this passage with the larger dynamics of the letter. Paul and the believers at Corinth, or at least a significant group of them, had strikingly different understandings of the gospel The Corinthians apparently thought that their relationship with Jesus Christ had already secured their salvation. They had, in their view, arrived at a special knowledge that allowed them freedom from this world and its limitations and standards. The triumphant Christ whom they served was one who offered them power and wisdom and security.24 Paul's response to this enthusiasm indicates that he sees the situation very differently. The gospel he preaches is of Christ crucified (1 Cor. 1:17; 2:2). It is the scandal of that cross that forms the center of the gospel and the stumbling block for Jews and Gentiles alike (1 Cor. 1:18-25). Although we may wish to see references to the resurrection included in these statements, it is striking that Paul postpones any explicit discussion of Jesus' resurrection to chapter 15. That literary observation is consistent with Paul's thought: the believer lives between the cross and the resurrection. Paul's understanding of worship, then, is consistent with the position he takes throughout the letter. The community's celebration of the Lord's Supper is not a time for rejoicing in one's salvation. Instead, the celebration of the Lord's Supper proclaims the death of Jesus and awaits his return. At the outset I noted the difficulties we have when we take up Pauline texts that touch on worship. We often go with our own contemporary concerns and questions. In this instance, we frequently read 1 Corinthians 11:17-34 and ask about our own worship practices. What constitutes the right observance of the Lord's Supper? Who should be included at the table and who excluded from it? Is the Lord's Supper to be understood as a sacrifice or as a memorial meal? As significant as these questions are, our own preoccupation with them may prevent us from hearing Paul. In this instance, his concerns differ from our own. His question is whether the celebration actually proclaims the death of the Lord or whether it proclaims simply the standards and values of the larger society. As is often the case with scripture, our questions are turned back upon us.
The literature on 1 Corinthians 11:2-16 is enormous. See the following attempts to unravel this difficult text: Ernst Kahler,Die Frau in denpaulinischen Briefen (Zürich: Gotthelf, 1960), pp. 45-46; Morna Hooker, "Authority on Her Head: An Examination of I Cor. xi. 10," New Testament Studies, 19 (1963-64), 410-16; J. A. Fitzmyer, "A Feature of Qumran Angelology and the Angels of 2 Cor. 11:10," Paul and Qumran, ed. Jerome Murphy-O'Connor (London: Chapman, 1968), pp. 31-47; Madeleine Boucher, "Some Unexplored Parallels to 1 Cor. 11, 11-12 and Gal. 3, 28: The New Testament on the Role of Women," Catholic Biblical Quarterly, 31 (1969), 50-58; W. J. Martin, "1 Corinthians 11:2-16: An Interpretation," Apostolic History and the Gospel Biblical and Historical Essays Presented to E E Bruce on His 60th Birthday, ed. W. Ward Gasque and R. P. Martin (Exeter, England: Paternoster Press, 1970), pp. 231-41; Annie Jaubert, "Le voile de femmes (1 Cor. xi, 2-16)," New Testament Studies, 18 (1971-72), 419-30; Robin Scroggs, "Paul and the Eschatological Woman," Journal of the American Academy of Religion, 40 (1972), 283-303; idem, "Paul and the


Eschatological Woman: Revisited,"Journal ofthe American Academy ofReligion, 42 (1974), 532-57; Elaine Pagels, "Paul and Women: A Response to Recent Discussion," Journal of the American Academy of Religion, 42 (1974), 543-49; W. O. Walker, "1 Cor. 11:2-16 and Paul's Views Regarding Women," Journal of Biblical Literature, 94 (1975), 94-110; Jerome Murphy O'Connor, "The NonPauline Character of 1 Corinthians 11:2-16?" Journal of Biblical Literature, 95 (1976), 615-21; idem, "Sex and Logic in 1 Corinthians 11:2-16," Catholic Biblical Quarterly, 42 (1980), 482-500; Lamar Cope, "1 Cor 11:2-16: One Step Further," Journal of Biblical Literature, 97 (1978), 435-46; J. P. Meir, "On the Veiling of Hermeneutics (1 Cor. 11:2-16)," Catholic Biblical Quarterly, 40 (1978). 212-26: G. W. TVompf, "On Attitudes Toward Women in Paul and Paulinist Literature: 1 Cor 11:3-6 and Its Context," Catholic Biblical Quarterly, 42 (1980), 196-215. *A SPady in the History of the Liturgy, trans. Dorothea H. G. Reeve (Leiden: E. J. Brill, 1979). 8 Trans. Norman Perrin (Philadelphia: Fortress Press, 1966). 4 Ed. and trans. John H. Schütz (Philadelphia: Fortress Press, 1982). 6 Earliest Christianity: A History of the Period A.D. 30-150, trans. F. C. Grant, 2 vols. (New York: Harper & Row, 1959), II, 648-49. * The Mysticism of Paul the Apostle, trans. William Montgomery (New York: Seabury Press, 1968), 263-64. 7 This is not to say, of course, that any exegete has actually termed the verse superfluous. Nevertheless, the common interpretation of the verse inevitably results in such a view. 8 Among those who do address this issue are H. A. W. Meyer, Critical andExegeticalHandbook to the Epistles to the Corinthians, trans. Douglas Bannerman, trans, rev. W. P. Dickson (5th ed.; New York: Funk and Wagnals, 1890), p. 265, and C. K. Barrett, A Commentary on the First Epistle to the Corinthians (New York: Harper & Row, 1968), p. 270. Barrett comments that "it is hard to see what the new sentence explains if not the memorial character of the Supper" (p. 270). 9 Nigel Turner, Syntax, vol. 3 in A Grammar of New Testament Greek, J. H. Moulton (Edinburgh: T. & T. Clark, 1963), p. 94. 10 The exegetical importance of such alterations is strenuously reiected by F. Blass and A. Debrunner, A Greek Grammar of the New Testament and Other Early Christian Literature, trans, and rev. Robert W. Funk (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1961), p. 252. 11 Dom Gregory Dix, The Shape of the Liturgy (London: Dacre Press, 1945), p. 242. 12 Technically, there is another question to be asked. The form in which proclaim (kataggeUein) appears here may be either indicative or imperative. The for (gar) at the beginning of the verse requires, however, that we read proclaim as an indicative statement rather than a command. 13 Ernst Kasemann, "The Pauline Doctrine of the Lord's Supper," Essays on New Testament Themes, trans. W. J. Montague (Philadelphia: Fortress Press, 1982), pp. 120-21; Barrett, First Epistle to the Corinthians, p. 270; Walter Schmithals, Gnosticism in Corinth, ed. John E. Steely (Nashville: Abingdon Press, 1971), p. 251; Nils Dahl, "Anamnesis: Memory and Commemoration in Early Christianity," Jesus in the Memory of the Early Church (Minneapolis: Augsburg Publishing House, 1976), p. 23. 14 Günther Bornkamm, "Lord's Supper and Church in Paul," Early Christian Experience, trans. Paul L. Hammer (New York: Harper & Row, 1969), p. 141. 16 1 Corinthians, trans. James W. Leiten (Philadelphia: Fortress Press, 1975), p. 201. 18 "Kataggello, " Theological Dictionary of the New Testament, ed. Gerhard Kittel, trans, and ed. G. W. Bromiley, 10 vols. (Grand Rapids: Wm. B. Eerdmans, 1964), I, 70-72. The same conviction is expressed in Charles J. Ellicott, St. Paul's First Epistle to the Corinthians (London: Longmans, Green, and Co., 1887), p. 218; Meyer, Epistles to the Corinthians, p. 266; and F. F. Bruce, 1 and 2 Corinthians (London: Marshall, Morgan and Scott, 1971), pp. 113-14. 17 Joachim Jeremías, The Eucharistie Words of Jesus, pp. 106-07. 18 G. H. Box, "The Jewish Antecedents of the Eucharist," Journal of Theological Studies, 3 (1901-1902), 357-69; Douglas Jones, "Anamnesis in the LXX and the Interpretation of 1 Cor. xi. 25," Journal of Theological Studies, 6(1955), 183-91. 19 KataggeUein also appears in Col. 1:28.


"You Proclaim the Lord's Death": 1 Corinthians 11:26 and PauVs Understanding of Worship
Review and Expositor

"The following scholars implicitly or explicitly agree with the interpretation of kataggeUein offered here: Walter Bauer, A Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament and Other Early Christian Literature, trans. W. F. Arndt and F. W. Gingrich, rev. F. W. Gingrich and F. W. Danker (2nd ed.; Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1979), p. 409; Johannes Weiss, Der erste Korintherbrief (Göttingen: Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht, 1910), p. 288; Hans Lietzmann, An die Korinther MI, rev. W. G. Kümmel (Tübingen: J. C. Β. Mohr, 1969), p. 58; Schweitzer, The Mysticism of Paul, p. 33; Lenski, Corinthians, p. 474; Jean Hering, The First Epistle of Saint Paul to the Corinthians, trans. A. W. Heathcote and P. J. Allcock (London: Epworth Press, 1962), pp. 118-19; Margaret Thrall, landII Corinthians (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1965), p. 84; William Baird, 1 Corinthians, 2 Corinthians (Atlanta: John Knox Press, 1980), p. 48. Seldom is any reason given for the interpretation offered. n Meyer, Epistles to the Corinthians, p. 266; R. C. H. Lenski, The Interpretation of St Paul's First and Second Epistles to the Corinthians (Minneapolis: Augsburg, 1937), p. 474. n Eucharistie Words of Jesus, pp. 249-55. n Social Setting of Pauline Christianity, pp. 145-74. M This picture is painted with a large brush and many fine points are thereby neglected. The historical-critical questions involved in this summary are numerous, and the commentaries provide, some introduction to them.


^ s
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