Sunday, February 12, 2023

Paul, the "Leaster"

Tomorrow is going to be a great day in Greek class. Yes, I'll be introducing those lovely words called adjectives. I don't think I will ever recover from first reading the Greek adjective that Paul coined in Eph. 3:8. He took the word "least" and then added an "er"to it. 

To me, the leaster of all the saints, was this grace given.

Sure, most English Bibles have Paul calling himself either "less than the least" or "the very least," but I really like "leaster." 

False modesty or true humility? It's the latter, of course. I had a prof in college who was like that. Not only did he feel unworthy of his salvation, he felt unworthy of his calling as a teacher, even though he excelled in the classroom and was one of the godliest men I've ever met. "Be humble, thinking of others as better than yourselves," Paul wrote to the Philippians, adding, "You must have the same attitude that Christ Jesus had" (Phil. 2:3, 5). The rub is that we are followers of a man whose attitude got him killed. He washed a lot of feet. So did my prof. Talk about a role model. 

Funny thing, I'm 70 and I feel I have so far to go to catch up to my college teacher. But from him I learned some never-to-be-forgotten lessons. God's mercy is here, of course. He will help me. But it begins with honestly acknowledging where I am.