[Milton-L] Re: the wings again

Harold Skulsky hskulsky at email.smith.edu
Thu Jan 3 12:37:33 EST 2008


"How did the Hebrew words 'seraphim' and 'cherubim' and so on come to be
linked to the Greek word "aggelos"?"

The premise of the question is fallacious. Heb. *saraph* (seraph) and
*ch'ruv* (cherub)* are routinely linked in Rabbinic commentary with Heb.
*mal'ach* (messenger; one who is SENT). Angelos* is simply the standard
koiné rendering (in LII and NT) of *mal'ach*. (For 17th-c. scholarship,
see, e.g., John Lightfoot's *Horae Hebraicae et Talmudicae*.)

As the supreme bearer of the *eu-ANGEL-ion* (Good News), Christ is,
literally and innocuously, the Father's messenger or *angelos* or
*mesites* (go-between)--the evangelist par excellence; the verb
*eu-ANGEL-isasthai* ("bear the Good News") regularly describes his
agency, as in his own announcement that "I must preach
[*euangelisasthai*] the kingdom of God . . . for therefore am I SENT."
The koiné for "SENT," by the way, is the root of "apostolos"; Christ is,
quite literally, an apostle of the Father--again literally and
innocuously. (Cf. also Eph. 2:17.)


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