# Saturday, August 19, 2006

[This is part of a running series on the Didache. See the introductory post for more information — RWB]

Phrasing/Translation

Ὅρα, μή τίς σε πλανήσῃ ἀπὸ ταύτης τῆς ὁδοῦ τῆς διδαχῆς,
See to it that no one might lead you astray from the way of this teaching,
   ἐπεὶ παρεκτὸς θεοῦ σε διδάσκει.
   for that one teaches you outside of God.

εἰ μὲν γὰρ δύνασαι βαστάσαι ὅλον τὸν ζυγὸν τοῦ κυρίου,
For if you are able bear the whole of the Lord's yoke,
   τέλειος ἔσῃ·
   you will be perfect.
εἰ δ ̓ οὐ δύνασαι,
But if you are not able,
   ὃ δύνῃ,
   whatever is possible,
   τοῦτο ποίει.
   do this.

περὶ δὲ τῆς βρώσεως,
And concerning food,
   ὃ δύνασαι βάστασον·
   Bear what is possible;
ἀπὸ δὲ τοῦ εἰδωλοθύτου λίαν πρόσεχε·
but of food offered to idols, be scrupulously on your guard,
   λατρεία γάρ ἐστι θεῶν νεκρῶν.
   for this is worship of dead gods.

Notes

After discussing "the way of life" in depth, and after treating "the way of death" in a somewhat more brief manner, the Didachist sums up and transitions. The next section begins more of a manual, detailing baptism, fasting and the Eucharist.

He begins by referring to the previous content, and exhorts the reader to make sure he minds the teaching, running from whomever would teach contrary. He urges the reader to adhere to the whole of what has been taught ("If you are able to bear the whole of the Lord's yoke, you will be perfect") but anticipates that this will not be possible ("... if you are not able [to bear the yoke], whatever is possible, do this.") The new convert is to keep his eyes on living according to the whole teaching, doing as much as is possible.

A specific instruction is given regarding food offered to idols; that food offered to idols should be avoided as much as possible. The act of offering food to idols is worship of dead gods, thus the food should be avoided. But that's not to say that one sins by eating such food; we do have 1Ti 4.1-5 for guidance in this area.

The bottom line: The Didachist instructs the reader to do as much as can be done, and for what is lacking, rely on the Lord.

Next up: Didache 7.

Post Author: rico
Saturday, August 19, 2006 2:28:24 PM (Pacific Daylight Time, UTC-07:00) 

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