Monday, May 23, 2011

The Greek Word "embateuo" means "to enter"

 "embateuon" is the present active participle of "embateuo" found in Colossians 2:18. It means "entering" but its translation is disputed since Paul does not use it with an object in this sentence. Paul writes to the Colossians:

Do not let anyone who delights in false humility and the worship of angels disqualify you fro the prize. Such a person goes into great detail  ("embateuon") about what he has seen, and his unspiritual mind puffs him up with idle notions." - Colossians 2:18

This verse is addressing the false philosophy/religion that had caused the Colossians to stumble in their Christian doctrine and their Christian walk. Paul uses pronouns like "anyone," "he," "his" and "him" in this verse to identify what seems to be a local shaman who must have served as a spiritual guide in the syncretism (mixed religious ideas) in Colossians. The people had become Christian, but continued to follow this man because of his "entering" or "embateuo." What did he enter into? Again, there is no object in Paul's sentence. There is simply a mention of his "entering" and having seen things? This word ("embateuo") has recently been found in a temple to Apollo 30 miles north of Ephesus in Greek inscriptions. The Greek inscriptions list the names of official delegates that had come to Apollo's temple to receive oracles. These visitors who wanted to receive an oracle had gone through two stages in the ritual. The first stage was the initiation where they were given the mysteries of the cult. The second stage was simply called "embateuo" or "the entering." This "embateuo" referred to the delegate entering the inner sanctuary for consultation with the the god or demon. The individual that was distracting the Colossian's spiritual growth appears to have "entered" into some temple, some heavenly sphere or some spiritual vision that was believed by the people to give that person some insight or wisdom from this superspiritual experience (or, experiences).

Galyn Wiemers
Generation Word

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