1 Cor. 8:1 - 4
While Gordon Fee taught two chapters of 1 Cor. this morning, he only went into text criticism on one section. Today it was 1 Cor. 8:1-4. His contention was that P 46 should be taken as the correct text base for these verses. That would mean excluding the words in red. I have provided Fee's translation in blue.
1 περὶ δὲ τῶν εἰδωλοθύτων
οἴδαμεν ὅτι πάντες γνῶσιν ἔχομεν
ἡ γνῶσις φυσιοῖ ἡ δὲ ἀγάπη οἰκοδομεῖ
Now about food sacrificed to idols:
We know that "We all possess knowledge."
But knowledge puffs up while love builds up.
2 εἴ τις δοκεῖ ἐγνωκέναι τι
οὔπω ἔγνω καθὼς δεῖ γνῶναι
Those who think they know something
do not yet know as they ought to know.
3 εἰ δέ τις ἀγαπᾷ τὸν θεόν
οὗτος ἔγνωσται ὑπ' αὐτοῦ
3 But whoever loves God is known by God.
But if one loves, this one knows [truly]. (Fee's reading.)
4 περὶ τῆς βρώσεως οὖν τῶν εἰδωλοθύτων
οἴδαμεν ὅτι οὐδὲν εἴδωλον ἐν κόσμῳ
καὶ ὅτι οὐδεὶς θεὸς εἰ μὴ εἷς
So then, about eating food sacrificed to idols:
We know that "An idol is nothing at all in the world"
and that "There is no God but one."
5 καὶ γὰρ εἴπερ εἰσὶν λεγόμενοι θεοὶ
εἴτε ἐν οὐρανῷ εἴτε ἐπὶ γῆς
ὥσπερ εἰσὶν θεοὶ πολλοὶ καὶ κύριοι πολλοί
For even if there are so-called gods,
whether in heaven or on earth
(as indeed there are many "gods" and many "lords"),
6 ἀλλ' ἡμῖν εἷς θεὸς ὁ πατήρ
ἐξ οὗ τὰ πάντα
καὶ ἡμεῖς εἰς αὐτόν
καὶ εἷς κύριος Ἰησοῦς Χριστός
δι' οὗ τὰ πάντα καὶ ἡμεῖς δι' αὐτοῦ
yet for us there is but one God, the Father,
from whom all things came and for whom we live;
and there is but one Lord, Jesus Christ,
through whom all things came and through whom we live.
Dr. Fee rightly points out that love in the first verse builds up the community - it edifies. This love, of the members of the community, one for another, is referred to again in verse 3. Fee argues that P 46 is a good 125 years earlier than the next extant manuscript, and should be given more weight than it is.
Fee explained that the majority of the TNIV committee was convinced that his reading of verse 3 was correct but they believed that because it was not supported by a majority of manuscripts it would not be widely accepted.
Fee argues this case from the principle of lectio difficilior
- 1901, from L., lit. "harder reading," from phrase maxim difficilior lectio potior. In textual reconstruction (of the Bible, etc.) the idea that, of two alternative manuscript readings, the one whose meaning is less obvious is less likely to be a copyist's alteration, and therefore should be given precedence.
While many other issues were brought up, they related to the interpretation and I feel that they would be better treated by reading his commentary.