Saturday, March 22, 2014

"May we keep our bodies pure, / as temples of the Holy Spirit."

Tríbue nos córpora nostra incontamináta serváre,
ut possit Spíritus Sanctus illic habitáre.

Make it possible for us to keep our bodies undefiled,
that the Holy Spirit may be able to dwell in them.

     From the prayer (prex, not oratio) for the Second Saturday of Lent, Liturgia horarum / Liturgy of the hours (Christian prayer, 312).  Preliminary indications are that this one isn't ancient.
     This is consistent with the common-sense (and therefore far from merely pietistic or holiness) interpretation of 1 Cor 6:12-20:  "Do you not know that your bodies are members [(τὰ σώματα ὑμῶν μέλη . . . ἐστιν)] of Christ?"  And that despite the singular nouns (though not pronouns) of vv. 19-20 (τὸ σῶμα, ναὸς).  Cf., for example, Gordon D. Fee, who follows Gundry contra Kempthorne:  "In referring to the body as the temple of the Spirit, Paul has taken the imagery that properly belongs to the church as a whole (cf. 3:16; 2 Cor. 6:16; Eph. 2:21-22) and applied it to the individual believer" (The First Epistle to the Corinthians, NICNT (Grand Rapids, MI:  Eerdmans, 1987), 264).
     Nonetheless incontaminat*, at least, does not occur in 1 Cor 6, or anywhere else of close relevance in the Vulgate (2 Mac 15:34; 2 Cor 7:11; and 1 Pet 1:4, 19 only, if the ARTFL version of the Vulgate is any indication).

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