Saturday, July 3, 2010

Apophatic love

Joel Hoffman has asked what verbs you would use to describe the action of love when translating 1 Corinthians 13:4. The first thing I notice in the first verb μακροθυμέω is the number of suggestions in the glosses that remind me of the description of Exodus 34:6. Is Paul reflecting on what he has known of Israel's God and applying it to the way that is Love?

What part of this gloss would one choose for μακροθυμέω?
  1. to be of a long spirit, not to lose heart
  2. to persevere patiently and bravely in enduring misfortunes and troubles
  3. to be patient in bearing the offenses and injuries of others
  4. to be mild and slow in avenging
  5. to be longsuffering, slow to anger, slow to punish

Would one choose אָרֵךְ? - I suspect that is what is in Paul's mind.

What about the others in the list?