Thursday, May 25, 2023

I Love the Apostle Paul

Wow! Wow! WOW! Take a look at this! 

We all know Phil. 1:21: "For to me to live is Christ and to die is gain." But did you know that Paul is alluding to a well-known expression used by the Greeks? When asked, "How are you", they would often answer:

To zēn chrēstos!

"Life is good!"

Paul tales this memorable turn of phrase and turns it into a reference to Christ by making one very simple change in spelling:

To zēn christos!

"Life is Christ!" 

Paul wants his beloved Philippians to understand that if life is good as non-believers, life for Christians is so much better because life is Christ! And watch this -- because life is Christ, then dying is gain (kerdos). Paul's words even rhyme. Say these words aloud: 




Now do you see why I love Paul so much? The man was not only a missionary giant. He not only towers over Augustine or Luther or Barth. He not only wrote 14 books of the New Testament. ("14" is not a typo.) He not only spoke several languages. But he was a brilliant writer. Arguably no other New Testament author used literary devices like Paul did. What rigorous writing! What profundity! Sometimes his words cascade over me like a mighty waterfall. The depth is amazing. 

I can never God thank enough for that man. I love Paul!