Hidden Treasure: Was Epaphroditus depressed?

//Hidden Treasure: Was Epaphroditus depressed?
Hidden Treasure: Was Epaphroditus depressed? 2017-03-03T07:59:03+00:00

Jehovah’s Witnesses watchman Forums Watchman Forum Hidden Treasure: Was Epaphroditus depressed?

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  • SongofHannah
    Post count: 67
    #37611 |

    Reading in Philippians, I thought it odd that Epaphroditus had become depressed over friends hearing he had fallen sick.

    Phil 2:25-26
    But for now I consider it necessary to send to you E·paph·ro·diʹtus, my brother and fellow worker and fellow soldier, and your envoy and personal servant for my need, since he is longing to see all of you and is depressed because you heard he had fallen sick.

    That great of an emotional response over the issue seemed a bit unstable, in my mind. So I decided to look it up in the Greek.

    The word I found translated as “depressed” from the Strong’s Concordance:

    G85: ἀδημονέω (ad-ay-mon-eh’-o)
    from a derivative of adeo (to be sated to loathing); to be in distress (of mind):–be full of heaviness, be very heavy.

    To get a deeper understanding of this word, I looked up all the scriptures where ἀδημονέω is also used (there where only 2 more):

    Mark 14:33
    And he took Peter and James and John along with him, and he began to feel deeply distressed and to be greatly troubled (ἀδημονέω).

    Matt 26:37
    And taking along Peter and the two sons of Zebʹe·dee, he began to feel grieved and to be greatly troubled (ἀδημονέω).

    There is only one more Greek scripture that is translated “depressed” in the NWT – found in 1 Thessalonians:

    1 Thess 5:14
    On the other hand, we urge you, brothers, to warn the disorderly, speak consolingly to those who are depressed (ὀλιγόψυχος), support the weak, be patient toward all.

    However, notice this is translated from a completely different Greek word:

    G3642: ὀλιγόψυχος (ol-ig-op’-soo-khos)
    (from 3641/olígos, “little in quantity” and 5590/psyxē, “soul”) – properly, an undeveloped soul, lacking in personhood (without a healthy identity, developed individuality).

    So, given the context of all the scriptures laid out here, it seems that ἀδημονέω carries a more briefly held emotion “troubled” or “distressed” (as Jesus was), whereas ὀλιγόψυχος denotes something more long term or even permanent, thus “depressed”, (or even so far as mentally ill, given the definition).

    All this taken into account, it makes much more sense, that Epaphroditus became emotionally troubled or distressed because ones had heard he had fallen sick, rather than be so distraught as to become depressed about it.

    But why does the Society continue to translate it as “depressed” when it so clearly means “troubled” – even when they had the opportunity to correct it?

    The only reason I can think of, is for the encouragement of those who suffer from depression. And I can understand, given that, why this would be a cherished scripture for many. But isn’t it more important to translate words as they were meant, rather than what we would like them to mean? What do you folks think?

    Bklyn Kevin
    Post count: 2

    Hannah that was such a wonderful informative read. I learned something new to day Thank you and now we know why the Apostle Paul said to make sure all things.
    Although it doesn’t seem to be a very big deal but yet it is be cause in essence is not the watchtower playing god when they manipulate the meanings and words? And did not Jesus SAY ”

    18 “I am bearing witness to everyone that hears the words of the prophecy of this scroll:
    (If anyone makes an addition )
    to these things, God will add to him the plagues that are written in this scroll;
    19 (and if anyone takes anything away from the words)
    of the scroll of this prophecy, God will take his portion away from the trees of life and out of the holy city, things which are written about in this scroll. Revelations 22:18-19.

    Now the bottom line is – in reality by the watchtower manipulating the meanings of the scrolls they are actually (making additions and taking away from the words of the scroll) and will be subjected to the punishment as Jesus clearly describe in Revelations 22:18-19.

    Robert King
    Post count: 33

    This new light is, well, how do I say it? Depressing. lol

    Post count: 67

    This new light is, well, how do I say it? Depressing. lol

    Yeah it kinda is, isn’t it? Sorry about that… :-/

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