In which is theological brain stretching

by Craig on March 26, 2015

With some humility
albeit a forced humility
forced by the hand of reality…

admittedly, the words on these pages are no longer read by many, but the ones who read them are special to me. This isn’t a fancy post, but one that might stretch your theological brain

because it stretched mine

and I like to share.

The next post on the Magnificat will be a little about Bible translations and the Septuagint and the way I am conducting my study – rather – the way we will be conducting our study. Because the precious few of you that there are will sharpen me just as this one comment on this one post from the past did.


if you’d like to stretch your theological brain, just go back to this post about Clement of Alexandria, and the last comment, by a man named Andrew. It makes me smile to think of how he made me stretch my theological brain, challenge my thinking and wording. It was so good that I don’t want it to be buried, because I think you might like the way it stretches your theological brain. And maybe you might have something to add that we hadn’t considered.


In which is Mary’s Magnificat

by Craig on February 22, 2015

Magnificat anima mea Dominum, "my souls magnifies the Lord"

last Christmas was all about the Panis Angelicus of Aquinas
this Christmas I fell madly in love with the Magnificat of Mary
so for the foreseeable future I’m focusing my study

on one



in Latin the word is magnificat
this is how someone who really knows Latin says it magnificat

in the Hebrew it’s גּדל (gadal)
and I can’t pronounce it any better than this גּדל 

in the Greek it’s μεγαλύνω (megaluno)
and I couldn’t find an online pronunciation

and at first glance it looks as if it should mean…


am I right?  ツ


it’s pronounced megaloono
with emphasis on the “loon”
and with a really heavy “l”
and with the shortest little “no” you’ve ever heard
and, of course, spoken like a typical Greek fisherman
(some flourishing of one of your hands helps)


this is Mary’s word
she probably said it in Aramaic
which is kind of like Hebrew but I can’t translate it

There is good reason to believe that Mary knew all these languages. But the word that Luke puts on her lips is the Greek version, so to me that’s the big one to study. And there are only a handful of times this word is used in the New Testament so to get a bigger picture I’m digging into the Greek translation of the Old Testament, the Septuagint, where it’s used oodles of times.

The Septuagint is the version of the Old Testament all the early Christians quoted, even Jesus. I have a sneaking suspicion that scampering about the Septuagint, tracking down the word, might reveal something rare and wonderful.

And if the very first word of the Magnificat is a major wonder, what might all of them be?



the picture sources:
the magnificat
the big moon


In which is maybe a bumper crop?

January 25, 2015

They had a chance to know everything dark light strength weakness perfection imperfection to understand pain but never be injured to know of sorrow but never undergo grief to fathom the human tapestry as it is woven with divine perspective from above but now, as the serpent promised they would know good and evil but [...]

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In which is harvest of futility and seed of a woman

January 13, 2015

Adam and Eve one simple decision failure of all failures (Genesis 3:6,7) The woman saw that the tree was good for food and pleasing to the eyes, and the tree was desirable for gaining wisdom. it may have seemed such a logical argument logic often being the garden. variety. disguise. of justification So she took [...]

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In which something becomes something else | Panis Angelicus

February 27, 2014

Panis Angelicus fit panis hominum   There’s the Latin. Where’s the English? The first thing is to detect and translate the verb. The only verb in that first line is “fit” (pronounced feet). It’s the Latin verb “fieri”… “to become, to be made, or to happen”. Now which one does Aquinas have in mind? Context. [...]

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In which we translate Panis Angelicus

January 30, 2014

Translating Panis Angelicus from Latin to English… …treasures lay hidden in the 800 year old poetry of Aquinas. There are so many delicious layers to burrow through. But before scooping up the goodness, I thought it might be worth double checking the translation. If I have that wrong I can have everything wrong. So I’m [...]

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In which I only begin to understand Panis Angelicus

January 18, 2014

It’s a most indelibly memorable song. But the words…the words… and the depth of the meaning. Breathtaking. Sublime. The translation from the Latin of Panis Angelicus only begins to unlock its mysteries. To truly get this hymn is to never hear it again without the heart falling to its knees. To truly get this hymn [...]

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In which I hang on and keep going

January 10, 2014

source Really really hard to do anything at all right now. It’s tough, but I’m not the only one it’s tough for. If it’s not tough for you, relish it! If it is, and has been, I get it… I do. So little in life brings me joy in this season. I’ll be frank, virtually [...]

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In which I send you to the other site : )

February 10, 2013

I haven’t had a post here for a while but I’ve been reworking my Story of Valentine on Deep Into Love  - it’s good stuff – I’d love to have you read it : )

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In which is thinking and thanking

January 29, 2013

I’ve been patently unsuccessful at writing posts since those 7 days with no sleep. But many of you have still visited and remained good bloggy friends – though I have failed. I think I’m turning a corner. But I’ve thought that way before. Still, it’s “I think I can, I think I can.” But as [...]

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