Sunday, January 27, 2008

Mutual Submission in Clement

There has been a great deal of discussion on whether or not mutual submission is actually possible. Here is an except from Clement's first epistle to the Corinthians. The date is early, in the late first century AD.
    1Clem 38:1
    So in our case let the whole body be saved in Christ Jesus, and let each man be subject unto his neighbor, according as also he was appointed with his special grace.

    1Clem 38:2
    Let not the strong neglect the weak; and let the weak respect the strong. Let the rich minister aid to the poor; and let the poor give thanks to God, because He hath given him one through whom his wants may be supplied. Let the wise display his wisdom, not in words, but in good works. He that is lowly in mind, let him not bear testimony to himself, but leave testimony to be borne to him by his neighbor. He that is pure in the flesh, let him be so, and not boast, knowing that it is Another who bestoweth his continence upon him.

    1Clem 38:3
    Let us consider, brethren, of what matter we were made; who and what manner of beings we were, when we came into the world; from what a sepulchre and what darkness He that molded and created us brought us into His world, having prepared His benefits aforehand ere ever we were born.

    1Clem 38:4
    Seeing therefore that we have all these things from Him, we ought in all things to give thanks to Him, to whom be the glory for ever and ever. Amen.
I hope that this can contribute to some of the conversations on exactly what submission is. The Greek verb hupotasso occurs in line 2 as "be subject unto." It does, of course say "each one" and not "each man" in Greek. The word man was added in English. What do you think?

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

The day I found these passages in 1 Clement for myself was probably one of the highlights of 2007! So beautiful!