As you can see below from the TDNT, there is a lot to read about vous in regards to the word that is translated as “warning” in the Eastern/Greek Orthodox Bible or as “admonishing” in the Apostolic Bible Polyglot (LXX).
I do not see the word tithemi (τίθημι) in Col 1:28.
So, as much as I appreciate and agree with Francois in his interpretation, I can’t explain how he gets to his interpretation on Col 1:28?
I’m hoping someone can shed some light on the path Francois takes to get to what he has shared in the Mirror Bible regarding Col 1:28.
† νουθετέω, νουθεσία.
νουθετέω (== νοῦν τίθημι, sc. in the heart, mind, etc., cf. Hom. Il., 13, 732; Od., 2, 124 f.), strictly νοῦς (→ 952), i.e., “to impart understanding (a mind for something),” with acc. of person (e.g., Test. Jos. 6:8), “to set right,” “to have a corrective influence on someone,” with double acc. “to lay on the heart of someone.” νουθετεῖν can mean “to impart understanding,” “to teach” (Democr. Fr., 52 [II, 156, 15 f., Diels5]: τὸν οἰόμενον νοῦν ἔχειν ὁ νουθετέων ματαιοπονεῖ) but it is not a direct synon. of διδάσκειν(→ II, 135 f.), though often linked with it, e.g., Plat. Ap., 26a, where Socrates takes aside someone who has unintentionally given a false account of something in order to instruct and warn him (ἰδίᾳ λαβόντα διδάσκειν καὶ νουθετεῖν), Leg., VIII. 845b (→ n. 4), Prot., 323d (→ n. 4), Plut. Aud., 3, 15 (II, 39a, 46b); Phil. Decal., 87 (of conscience): ὡς δικαστὴς διδάσκει, νουθετεῖ, παραινεῖ μεταβάλλεσθαι. In the case of διδάσκειν the primary effect is on the intellect, and someone qualified exercises the influence. νουθετεῖν, however, describes an effect on the will and disposition, and it presupposes an opposition which has to be overcome. It seeks to correct the mind, to put right what is wrong, to improve the spiritual attitude. “The basic idea is that of the well-meaning earnestness with which one seeks to influence the mind and disposition by appropriate instruction, exhortation, warning and correction,”2 cf. Plat. Euthyd., 284e: φιλῶ σε, ἀλλὰ νουθετῶ σε ὡς ἐταῖρον, Ep. Ar., 207: at εἰ τοὺς καλοὺς καὶ ἀγαθοὺς τῶν ἀνθρώπων ἐπιεικέστερον νουθετεῖς, Dio Chrys. Or., 51, 5: ὁ δὲ μετʼ εὐνοίας νουθετῶν, ibid., 7: νουθετεῖν ἠβούλετο τοὺς ἁμαρτάνοντας καὶ τὸ γοῦν καθʼ αὑτὸν βελτίονας ποιεῖν. Hence the dominant meanings “to admonish, warn, soothe, remind, correct,” Aesch. Prom., 264 f.: παραινεῖν νουθετεῖν τε τοὺς κακῶς πράσσοντας, Soph. Oed. Col., 1193 f.: νουθετούμενοι φίλων ἐπῳδαῖς, Aristot. Pol., I, 13, p. 1260b, 5 ff.: λέγουσιν οὐ καλῶς οἱ λόγου τοὺς δούλους ἀποστεροῦντες καὶ φάσκοντες ἐπιτάξει χρῆσθαι μόνον· νουθετητέον γὰρ μᾶλλον τοὺς δούλους ἢ τοὺς παῖδας, Ps.-Democr. Fr., 302, 168 (II, 222, 7 f., Diels5): νεκρὸν ἰατρεύειν καὶ γέροντα νουθετεῖν ταὐτόν ἐστι, Philo Virt., 94: ἄκοντας νουθετεῖ καὶ σωφρονίζει νόμοις ἱεροῖς, Vit. Mos. I, 110: τοὺς οἰκήτορας τῆς χώρας ὁ θεὸς νουθετῆσαι μᾶλλον ἐβούλετο ἢ διαφθεῖραι Jos. Ant., 20, 162 etc. Aiming both to ward off and to impel, νουθετεῖν takes place through the word, v. Aristot. Rhet., II, 18, p. 1391b, 10 f.: ἄν τε πρὸς ἕνα τις τῷ λόγῳ χρώμενος προτρέπῃ ἢ ἀποτρέπῃ, οἷον οἱ νουθετοῦντες ποιοῦσιν. It is an elementary means of education (→ παιδεύω) which the father uses, Plat. Resp., VIII, 560a. A divine pedagogue like the logos of V 4, p 1020 Philo or the Christ of Cl. Al. is also depicted νουθετῶν; encouraging, warning, censuring, he instructs men, cf. Philo Poster. C., 68; Cl. Al. Paed., I, 75, 1; 76, 1; Prot., I, 6, 2 etc. There is, however, no technical use of νουθετεῖν for the educational work of the philosopher, not even in Plut. Aud. Poet., 4, → n. 3). νουθετεῖν in this sense is a means of pedagogical discipline. It does not mean “to punish,” but through the word (Xenoph. Mem., I, 2, 21: νουθετικοὶ λόγοι) to cause the appeal to the moral consciousness to gain a hold over men and bring them to repentance and shame, so that punishment is superfluous.6 In keeping with pedagogic experience, however, the word can have the secondary sense of actively affecting the mind, i.e., “to discipline,” e.g., Aristoph. Vesp., 254: κονδύλοις (blows) νουθετήσεθʼ ἡμᾶς, Plat. Leg., IX, 879d: The youth must not presume πληγαῖς νουθετεῖν a stranger, Plut. Aetia Romana, 82 (II, 2830): αἱ μὲν ῥάβδοι (sc. of the praetors) νουθετοῦσι τὸ μεταθέσθαι δυνάμενον, οἱ δὲ πελέκεις ἀποκόπτουσι τὸ ἀνουθέτητον, Philo Congr., 118: δέκα πληγαῖς καὶ τιμωρίαις ὁ τῶν ὅλων ἐπίτροπος καὶ κηδεμὼν νουθετεῖ, Jos. Ant., 8, 217: εἰ μάστιξιν αὐτοὺς ἐκεῖνος (Solomon) ἐνουθέτει, σκορπίοις τοῦτο ποιήσειν αὐτὸν (Rehoboam) προσδοκᾶν.
The LXX, which hardly uses νουθετέω to render Heb. terms except in Job, shares for the most part the general Gk. understanding. In 1 Βασ. 3:13 it is used for כָּהָה pi, “to reproach, reprimand,” Job 4:3 יָסַר pi, “urge, admonish.” In Job 40:4 νουθετούμενος (no Heb.) means “him whom God has chastened,” i.e., Job. In Job 30:1; 36:12 (no apparent relation to the HT) the verb means “to warn, correct,” cf. also (of God) Wis. 11:10: πατὴρ νουθετῶν, 12:2, 26; Ps. Sol. 13:9: νουθετήσει δίκαιον ὡς υἱὸν ἀγαπήσεως. The unusual νουθετεῖσθαι (for בִּין, hitp or q) occurs at Job 23:15; 37:14; 38:18; 34:16 in the sense “to let oneself be taught,” “to understand,” “to have understanding.”
νουθεσία, the corresponding noun, means “admonition,” Aristoph. Ra., 1009 f.: νουθεσία is one of the most admirable qualities of poets, who make men better; Plat. Resp., III, 399b: νουθέτησις (“exhortation”) with διδαχή (“instruction”), Diod. S., XV, 7: φιλικὴν νουθεσίαν ἐπιφθεγξάμενοι Dio Chrys. Or., 78, 42: σφοδροτέραν τὴν V 4, p 1021 νουθεσίαν καὶ παρακέλευσιν ποιούμενος αὑτῷ τε κἀκείνοις, “correction,” Plut. De Virtute Morali, 12 (II, 452c): αὐτούς γε μὴν τούτους ὁρᾶν ἔστι … τοὺς νέους … πολλάκις … νουθεσίαις κολάζοντας, “chastisement,” cf. Gellius, Noctes Atticae, VII, 14 (I, 298, C. Hosius): poeniendis peccatis tres esse debere causas existimatum est. una est causa quae Graece <vel κόλασις> vel νουθεσία dicitur, cure poena adhibetur castigandi atque emendandi gratia, nt is, qui fortuito deliquit, attentior fiat correctiorque. The word is common in Philo in the sense “admonition,” “warning,” “correction,” e.g., Vit. Mos., II, 241, Leg. All., III, 193, Migr. Abr., 14 (with σωφρονισμός), Deus Imm., 54 (with παιδεία), Vit. Mos., I, 98 (with ἐπίπληξις), Spec. Leg., III, 141: πληγὰς ἕνεκα νουθεσίας ἐντεῖναι, cf. also Jos. Ant., 3, 311: τιμωρίαν …, οἵαν δὲ οἱ πατέρες ἐπὶ νουθεσίᾳ τοῖς τέκνοις ἐπιφέρουσιν, Test. R. 3:8: μήτε ἀκούων νουθεσίας πατέρων αὐτοῦ. νουθεσίαι as a means of divine chastening, Philo Op. Mund., 128: God is not afraid to punish like a judge, now through more violent threats, now through milder warnings (νουθεσίαις) …, through warnings when a man has sinned involuntarily and unthinkingly, so that he will not commit the same offence again.”
The only LXX use is at Wis. 16:6 (of the warning of the wilderness generation by divinely sent plagues): εἰς νουθεσίαν δὲ πρὸς ὀλίγον ἐταράχθησαν. νουθέτημα is synon. at Job 5:17 (HT מוּסָר) of the chastening of man by God. Cf. νουθέτησις, Jdt. 8:27: εἰς νουθέτησιν μαστιγοῖ κύριος τοὺς ἐγγίζοντας αὐτῷ, though at Prv. 2:2 the ref. is to the educative admonition of the son by the father.
The group occurs in the NT only in Paul and the sphere of his influence. The pedagogic sense may be discerned in the noun (→ 1019 f.). νουθεσία (κυρίου), with → παιδεία, is a means of Christian upbringing in the household table of Eph. (6:4b). It denotes the word of admonition which is designed to correct while not provoking or embittering (cf. v. 4a: μὴ παροργίζετε). Divine judgments in the OT have saving pedagogic significance as warning examples πρὸς νουθεσίαν ἡμῶν, 1 C. 10:11 (→ 1019 f.). A peculiarity of the NT use of the verb is that νουθετεῖν, like → παρακαλεῖν, → παραμυθεῖσθαι → στηρίζειν, is now a task and function of the pastor. The man who by admonition and correction seeks to turn others from what is wrong and to lay the good on their hearts is the apostle, the preacher of the Gospel, the one who bears responsibility for the faith and life of the primitive churches. Thus Paul’s own preaching of Christ seeks to show the hearer what he is and what he should be, τέλειος ἐν Χριστῷ (Col. 1:28). V 4, p 1022 His pastoral work in a congregation is retrospectively presented as a special, inwardly motivated cure of souls by means of indefatigable exhortation with a view to correction and amendment (Ac. 20:31). His sharp criticism in letters is simply the corrective word of a father to his children (1 C. 4:14 f.). Similarly a congregation admonishes or corrects whether by its pastors (1 Th. 5:12: τοὺς … νουθετοῦντας ὑμᾶς) or by the reciprocal brotherly ministry of the members exercising pastoral oversight with a sense of congregational obligation (1 Th. 5:14; R. 15:14; Col. 3:16). If the ref. in 2 Th. 3:15 is to the correction of the refractory, in Tt. 3:10: αἱρετικὸν ἄνθρωπον μετὰ μίαν καὶ δευτέραν νουθεσίαν παραιτοῦ, νουθεσία is the attempt to make the heretic aware of the falsity of his position, a pastoral attempt to reclaim rather than a disciplinary measure, though there is place for this if the corrective word is of no avail.
The NT understanding of the terms lives on in the post-apost. fathers. Only in Herm. v., 1, 3, 1 f. is there ref. to the paternal duty of νουθετεῖν. In the vocabulary of the Christian community νουθετέω, νουθεσία and νουθέτησις are common terms for pastoral admonition, for mutual exhortation to amendment of life, repentance and conversion, cf. 1 Cl., 7, 1; 56, 2; Ign. Eph., 3, 1; Herm. v., 2, 4, 3; m., 8, 10; 2 Cl., 17, 2; 19, 2. The terms can also apply more specifically to the admonitory sermon preached at divine worship, cf. 2 Cl., 17:3: ἐν τῷ νουθετεῖσθαι ἡμᾶς ὑπὸ τῶν πρεσβυτέρων, Just. Apol., 67, 4: ὁ προεστὼς διὰ λόγου τὴν νουθεσίαν … ποιεῖται.
Behm, J., & Würthwein, E. (1964–). νοέω, νοῦς, νόημα, ἀνόητος, ἄνοια, δυσνόητος, διάνοια, διανόημα, ἔννοια, εὐνοέω, εὔνοια, κατανοέω, μετανοέω, μετάνοια, ἀμετανόητος, προνοέω, πρόνοια, ὑπονοέω, ὑπόνοια, νουθετέω, νουθεσία. G. Kittel, G. W. Bromiley, & G. Friedrich (Eds.), Theological dictionary of the New Testament (electronic ed., Vol. 4, pp. 1019–1022). Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans.
A. νόμος; in the Greek and Hellenistic World.
1. The Meaning of νόμος.
a. νόμος belongs etym. to νέμω, “to allot,” and thus has the sense of “what is proper,” “what is assigned to someone.” In ancient times it has a comprehensive range V 4, p 1024 of meaning which embraces any kind of existing or accepted norm, order, custom, usage or tradition. Νόμος is what is valid and in use: τί οὖν ἄλλο νόμος εἴη ἂν … ἢ τὰ νομιζόμενα (Ps.-Plat. Min., 313b; cf. Aristoph. Nu., 1185 f.; 1420 ff.; Xenoph. Mem., IV, 4, 19). The concept is religious in origin and plays a main role in the cultus. The connection between νόμος and veneration of the gods finds linguistic expression in the fixed phrase νομίζειν θεούς (Hdt., 1, 131; 4, 59; Aristoph. Nu., 329; 423), i.e., to honour the gods, according to the cultic usage of the polis, by participation in (national) worship: ὥς κε πόλις ῥέζῃσι, νόμος δʼ ἀρχαῖος ἄριστος (Hes. Fr., 221 [Rzach], cf. Plat. Crat., 400e: ἐν ταῖς εὐχαῖς νόμος ἐστίν). Marriage, procreation (Plat. Leg., IV, 720e ff.), the erotic life (Plat. Symp., 182a), common meals, gymnastic schools, the use of weapons (Plat. Leg., I, 625c) and esp. the honouring and burial of the dead (Thuc., 2, 35; Eur. Suppl., 563; Isoc. Or., 12, 169) all come under the concept. The establishment and regulation of the Nemean games (Pind. Nem., 10, 28; cf. Isthm., 2, 38) can be described as νόμος no less than a political order and constitution (Pind. Pyth., 2, 86; 10, 70). The gods, too, have νόμοι (Pind. Pyth., 2, 43; Nem., 1, 72; cf. Hes. Theog., 66). This extensive usage is always maintained.
b. As political order developed in Greece, however, the word came into specialised use in the juridical sphere. The legal norm or use becomes consciously stabilised and binding νόμος or law. No distinction is here made between political and absolute law (Heracl. Fr., 114 [I, 176, 5 ff., Diels5]; Aesch. Prom., 150 f.; Pind. Fr., 169; Soph. Oed. Tyr., 865). νόμος broadens out into the (divine) law of the world (Plat. Leg., IV, 716a; Callim. Hymn., 5, 100; M. Ant., 7, 9), the law of nature (Plat. Gorg., 483e; Dio Chrys. Or., 58, 5 [Budé]; Porphyr. Abst., 2, 61), the (philosophical) moral law (Epict. Diss., I, 26, 1; Muson., p. 87, 5 ff. [Hense]). c. Only in the 5th cent., as the νόμος came to be written down in individual νόμοι, does the word acquire, in the context of democratic development, the special sense of a “written law,” “a fixed expression of legal order and the national constitution in a democratic polis” (Aristot. Resp. Ath., 7, 1; Andoc. Myst., 83). The legal definition may be seen in Xenoph. Mem., I, 2, 42 ff.: νόμοι εἰσίν, οὓς τὸ πλῆθος συνελθὸν καὶ δοκιμάσαν ἔγραψε. Νόμος is the compulsory command or order of a state, with punishment for violation (Antiphon Or., 6, 4; Democr. Fr., 181 [II, 181, 11 ff., Diels5]; Ps.-Aristot. Rhet. Al., 2, p. 1422a, 2 ff.). d. When νόμος, as distinct from the divine → φύσις, came to be understood essentially as a human statute (Hippocr. Vict., 1, 11; Diod. S. Excerpta Vaticana, 7, 26 [p. 26, Dindorf]) it could finally become, in the Sophist writers at the end of the 5th cent., a “contract” or “convention” (Aristoph. Av., 755 ff.; esp. in the formula νόμῳ/φύσει, Democr. Fr., 9 [II, 139, 10 ff.]; Hippias in Plat. Prot., 337c)—a degenerate sense which has nothing to do with the original meaning of νόμος. e. The basic meaning νόμος == τάξις caused νόμος to become a tt. in music in the sense of “mode of singing,” “melody” (Alcman. Fr., 93, Diehl Hom. Hymn. Ap., 20; Aesch. Prom., 576). From the time of Plato it became a habit to play on the twofold political and musical sense (Plat. Leg., IV, 722d f; 800a; Archytas Pythagoraeus in Stob. Ecl., IV, 1, 138 [p. 88, 2 ff., Hense]; Max. Tyr., 6, 7).
In relation to Jn. 7:51 and R. 3:19 it is not unimportant that like so many other basic Gk. concepts Νόμος was personified and presented as a divine figure in poetry (Eur. Hec., 799 f.; Plat. Crito 50a ff.) and later in theology (Procl. in Rem Publ., II, 307, 20 ff. [Kroll]). In the same connection one might mention the expressions ὁ νόμος συντάσσει, ἀγορεύει, λέγει (Inscr. Magn. 92a, 11; b 16; Plat. Resp., V, 451b; Callim. Hymn., 5, 100), the description of νόμος as δεσπότης (Hdt., 7, 104), τύραννος (Plat. Prot., 337c), βασιλεύς (Pind. Fr., 169 etc.), and finally even as θεός (Plat. Ep., VIII, 354e; V 4, p 1025 TGF Fr. adesp. 471). In mythical form Dio Chrys. Or., 58, 8 (Budé) extols νόμος as τοῦ Διὸς ὄντως υἱός. As πάρεδρος τοῦ Διός (Orph. Fr. (Kern), 160, Kern), as the daughter of Δικαιοσύνη and Εὐσέβεια (Fr., 159), it appears alongside Δικαιοσύνη in Orphism, which addresses a special hymn to it as a cosmic power (Hymn. Orph., 64, ed. Quandt, 1941).
2. The Nature and Development of the Concept in the Greek World.
As the epitome of what is valid in social dealings νόμος in its unwritten form is first rooted in religion. In the phrases τὰ νομιζόμενα, νομίζειν θεούς (→ 1024) it constantly maintained its relation to the cultus and to worship of the gods (cf. the Pythagorean precept: ἀθανάτους μὲν πρῶτα θεούς, νόμῳ ὡς διάκεινται, τίμα Carmen Aureum, 1 f.; Iambl. Vit. Pyth., 144; Diog. L., 8, 33). Even the written law of the νόμος is still an expression of the will of the deity which holds sway in the city: ὁ μὲν οὖν τὸν νόμον κελεύων ἄρχειν δοκεῖ κελεύειν ἄρχειν τὸν θεὸν καὶ τὸν νοῦν μόνους, Aristot. Pol., 3, 16, p. 1287a, 28 ff., cf. Plat. Leg., IV, 712b. This rootage in the divine sphere, which always persists, gives to the Gk. νόμος concept its characteristic significance and true strength.
This applies particularly to the origin of νόμος. It is of the nature of νόμος to have an author. Either the gods give it: πᾶς ἐστιν νόμος εὕρημα μὲν καὶ δῶρον θεῶν, Ps.-Demosth. Or., 25, 16 (cf. Philo 15; Soph. Ant., 450 ff.; Xenoph. Mem., IV, 4, 19), or it is the work of a great personality, the law-giver: νόμους …, ἀγαθῶν καὶ παλαιῶν νομοθετῶν εὑρήματα (Plat. Prot., 326d; cf. Hdt., 1, 29; Critias Fr., 25, 5 ff. [II, 386 f., Diels5]). This is the man who has special insight either by divine endowment or from within himself (πόλιν δὲ ἢ παρὰ θεῶν τινος ἢ παρὰ τούτου τοῦ γνόντος ταῦτα λόγον παραλαβοῦσαν, νόμον θεμένην, Plat. Leg., I, 645b, cf. Polit., 300c. The νόμος is thus a work of supreme skill (Plat. Leg., X, 890d; Polit., 297a) and wisdom (Hdt., 1, 196 f.; Eur. Ion, 1312 f.; Plat. Leg., IV, 712a; Max. Tyr., 6, 7). This does not prevent the mythico-historical legislation of the nation from being directly attributed in many cases to specific gods or to the religious authority of Delphi: τόν τε Μίνω παρὰ Διὸς διʼ ἐνάτου ἔτους λαμβάνειν τοὺς νόμους ἱστοροῦσι φοιτῶντα εἰς τὸ τοῦ Διὸς ἄντρον, τόν τε αὖ Λυκοῦργον τὰ νομοθετικὰ εἰς Δελφοὺς πρὸς τὸν Ἀπόλλωνα συνεχὲς ἀπιόντα παιδεύεσθαι γράφουσι Πλάτων τε καὶ Ἀριστοτέλης καὶ Ἔφορος, …. Ζάλευκον τὸν Λοκρὸν παρὰ τῆς Ἀθηνᾶς τοὺς νόμους λαμβάνειν ἀπομνημονεύουσιν. οἳ δὲ τὸ ἀξιόπιστον τῆς παρʼ Ἕλλησι νομοθεσίας, ὡς οἷόν τε αὐτοῖς, ἐπαίροντες εἰς τὸ θεῖον … (Cl. Al. Strom., I, 170, 3 with Adnotatio). When finally the νόμοι came into being in the polis by mutual agreement and decision (Xenoph. Mem., I, 2, 42 f.), this was the beginning of their downfall; they soon became mere ψηφίσματα rather than νόμοι (Demosth. Or., 20, 89 ff.).
a. In the earliest period νόμος is a creation and revelation of Zeus βασιλεύς. It is thus anchored in a divine sphere in which there is true belief.
Myth traces back the nomothesia of King Minos (βασιλεὺς καὶ νομοθέτης, Plut. Thes., 16 [I, 7]) to his dealings with Zeus (cf. Plat. Leg., I, 624a). The god is the original of the kingly power and wisdom reflected in νόμος. In Hes. Theog., 901 ff. the θεῶν βασιλεύς (886), after defeating the Titans, contracts a marriage with Themis, V 4, p 1026 from which spring Δίκη, Εἰρήνη and Εὐνομίη, i.e., true order or good. Pindar Fr., 169 lauds νόμος as ὁ πάντων βασιλεὺς θνατῶν τε καὶ ἀθανάτων who ἄγει δικαιῶν τὸ βιαιότατον ὑπερτάτᾳ χειρί. Here the language and the train of thought both show that νόμος occupies the place of him who is πάντων βασιλεύς (Democr. Fr., 30 [II, 151, 14, Diels5]; Hes. Fr., 195 [Rzach], cf. Theog., 923) and who unites power and right in his hand, namely, Zeus. Zeus it was who established the νόμος that animals should prey on one another in βία but that men should live in accordance with the δίκη which he gave them, Hes. Op., 276 ff. Κράτει νόμου, i.e., in virtue of the perfection of such a divine norm, of an order of will and a personal sense of right for all these are inherent in νόμος—the law-giver Solon boasts that he has united βία and δίκη, Fr., 24, 15 f., Diehl
Growing out of the struggle for right in the order of human life, νόμος is by its very nature righteousness (δίκη μὲν οὖν νόμου τέλος ἐστίν, Plut. Princ. Inerud., 3 [II, 780e]), → 1023, n. 1 But the δίκη or αἰδώς expressed in νόμος resides with Zeus, Plat. Prot., 322d; Ael. Arist. Or., 43, 20 (344, Keil). In terms of religious myth, the goddess Dike, obeying the supreme ruler (βασιλεύς, Plut. Exil., 5 [II, 601b]), watches over the θεῖος νόμος, Orph. Fr. (Kern), 21 (Kern); Plat. Leg., IV, 716a. To late antiquity νόμος is thus connected in a special way with Zeus, → 1024.
In the polis established usage is given constitutional form and thus, as the epitome of all legal norms, it becomes law. Along these lines the concept can then come to specific development and mastery. For the state as a theoretical form is itself νόμος for the Greeks: πόλεως εἶναι ψυχὴν τοὺς νόμους (Aristot. of Demosth. in Stob. Ecl., IV, 1, 144 [p. 90, Hense]); ὅπου γὰρ μὴ νόμοι ἄρχουσιν, οὐκ ἔστι πολιτεία (Aristot. Pol., 4, 4, p. 1292a, 32). The people must contend for its νόμος as for its wall, Heracl. Fr., 44 (I, 160, 13 f., Diels5). It is the reigning power which commands as βασιλεύς or δεσπότης (→ 1030) in the polis and, e.g., bids the Spartans either triumph in battle or die, Hdt., 7, 104.
b. In the 6th century the new understanding of the divine world brought a corresponding change in the content of νόμος. It is still connected with deity but the Zeus of an earlier age is now reconstructed as a divine principle. The concept of the cosmos produces the view that νόμος is a reflection of the universe in which the same νόμος rules as in political life. Earthly law is simply a specific instance of divine law in the cosmos: ξὺν νόῳ λέγοντας ἰσχυρίζεσθαι χρὴ τῷ ξυνῷ πάντων, ὅκωσπερ νόμῳ πόλις, καὶ πολὺ ἰσχυροτέρως. τρέφονται γὰρ πάντες οἱ ἀνθρώπειοι νόμοι ὑπὸ ἐνὸς τοῦ θείου. κρατεῖ γὰρ τοσοῦτον ὁκόσον ἐθέλει καὶ ἐξαρκεῖ πᾶσι καὶ περιγίνεται, Heracl. Fr., 114 (I, 176, 5 ff., Diels5). Man cannot exist without the νόμος of his polis, even less so without the νόμος of the cosmos.
The Stoics who followed Heracl. regarded this later as the first mark of their cosmopolitanism, cf. Cleanthes Fr., 537 (I, 121, 34 f., v. Arnim); Dio Chrys. Or., 58, 2 (Budé). In contrast, Heracl. himself advocates rootage in the concrete νόμος πόλεως. Indeed, national law is so powerful a norm (cf. Fr., 44 [I, 160, 13 f., Diels5]) that Heracl. understands the universe in terms of it. The νόμος of a polis is common (ξυνόν V 4, p 1027 or κοινόν, Ps.-Demosth. Or., 25, 15 f.; cf. Plat. Crito, 50a; Leg., I, 645a; Plut. Quaest. Conv., II, 10, 2 [II, 644c]). In life κατὰ νόμον the citizen lives as it were the κοινὸς βίος in contrast to private life. Similarly there is in the cosmos τὸ ξυνὸν πάντων which is explained in terms of the polis and its νόμος. It is the divine law of the world which one can grasp with the νοῦς (ξὺν νόῳ) and which must be followed like the λόγος and deity, Fr., 2 (I, 151, 1 ff., Diels5). Knowledge here is knowledge of a universal law and at the same time the keeping of this law. Both together are Gk. φρονεῖν, for ξυνόν ἐστι πᾶσι τὸ φρονέειν, Fr., 113 (I, 176, 4, Diels5) and ξυνόν is the universal law.
c. Greek tragedy tackles for the first time the problem of the νόμος which is against another νόμος (cf. Democr. Fr., 259 [II, 198, 2 ff., Diels5]), which is thus ambiguous8 and which cannot be kept. In the midst of criticism of the νόμος in many different forms (→ 1028), Sophocles in Antigone causes the νόμος to triumph in both its aspects. If the law of the state rests originally on divine law, then in the defence of Antigone (450 ff.) an unwritten divine law is set over against the law of the polis. Neither Zeus nor Dike, οἳ τούσδʼ ἐν ἀνθρώποισιν ὥρισαν νόμους (as we should read, 452), commands Antigone to do what she does, but the ἄγραπτα κἀσφαλῆ θεῶν νόμιμα (454 f.). Above the law of the state which derives from divine law is another divine law of ancient origin. But when the law which comes from God is no longer reconcilable with God, cleavage arises for the individual, cf. the tragic end of Antigone and Creon’s destruction. Nothing is more distinctive of the Greek’s understanding of existence than that at the point where he sees that the νόμος is equivocal and cannot be observed, since to keep one νόμος is necessarily to violate another, he never even imagines that it is he himself who absolutely and essentially is incapable of obedience to the law. The contradiction which results in the death of Antigone is for him the eternal, tragic contradiction of a law which comes from God but is no longer reconcilable with God. He traces back the contradiction to deity itself. In general inability to keep the law is no problem to the Greek. When such inability arises, it is given a tragic interpretation. It is not attributed to human sinfulness before the law.
Out of the contradiction, and supplementing the written law of the polis, the ἄγραφος νόμος took on greater significance from the 5th century onwards (Thuc., II, 37, 3; Ps.-Aristot. Rhet. Al., 2, p. 1421b, 35 ff.). In detail it is thought of in various ways, V 4, p 1028 as the ancient popular ἔθος of this or that polis (Diog. L., 3, 86), or more commonly as a natural or divine law valid for all men (Xenoph. Mem., IV, 4, 19 f.; Demosth. Or., 18, 275; 23, 61 and 85; Plat. Resp., VIII, 563d). Hence it is rather obscurely identified partly with the natural law of the Sophists and partly with the cosmic law of the Stoics (Maxim. Tyr., 6, 7). To the main ἄγραφοι or ἱεροὶ νόμοι constantly recur in tradition belong not only ritual religious commandments but also ethical and social statutes which Xenoph. Mem., IV, 4, 20 already groups under the title θεοῦ νόμος. The most explicit list is to be found in Plut. Lib. Educ., 10 (II, 7e): δεῖ θεοὺς μὲν σέβεσθαι, γονέας δὲ τιμᾶν, πρεσβυτέρους αἰδεῖσθαι, νόμοις πειθαρχεῖν, ἄρχουσιν ὑπείκειν, φίλους ἀγαπᾶν, πρὸς γυναῖκας σωφρονεῖν, τέκνων στερκτικοὺς εἶναι, δούλους μὴ περιυβρίζειν, cf. Aesch. Eum., 545 ff.; Eur. Fr., 853; Ditt. Syll.2, 1268. In keeping with the high regard which these ἄγραφοι νόμοι always enjoyed they are described by Plato as δεσμοὶ πάσης πολιτείας (Plat. Leg., VII, 973b) and later they can even be regarded as the source of all earthly laws (Archytas in Stob. Ecl., IV, 1, 132 [p. 79, Hense]).
d. In the 5th century the authority of νόμος was shaken. One factor was the learning of other νόμοι in the world. These had already been depicted by Herodot. with some respect and admiration (3, 38). He found in the νόμοι of the peoples their → σοφίη and also the breaking of an original σοφίη, 1, 196 f.; 7, 102; cf. Heracl. Fr., 114. In the relentless Eight for existence, however, the subject soon began to make itself the norm of what is absolutely valid (ἔγωγε φημὶ καὶ νόμον γε μὴ σέβειν ἐν τοῖσι δεινοῖς τῶν ἀναγκαίων πλέον, Eur. Fr., 433; ἄνθρωποι τύραννοι νόμων, Plat. Ep., VIII, 354c).
“Human nature gained mastery over the laws and became stronger than right,” affirms Thucydides in the Peloponnesian War (III, 84; cf. 45, 7). Among the Sophists νόμος was then put aside theoretically; man is rather set over against → φύσις (ἡ φύσις ἐβούλεθʼ, ᾗ νόμων οὐδὲν μέλει, Eur. Fr., 920). There thus arises a cleft between what is right by law (νόμῳ) and what is right by nature (φύσει), Plat. Gorg., 483a ff.; Leg., X, 889e. For the prescriptions of the law usually come into being arbitrarily, by human convention, Antiphon Fr., 44, Col. 1, 23 ff. (II, 346 f., Diels5). Nature, on the other hand, has its own law which even in the sphere of ethics and politics is recognised as a true norm, the νόμος τῆς φύσεως (Callicles in Plat. Gorg., 483e). νόμος is thus anchored in something higher. Instead of a divine sphere in which one believes, however, this is now φύσις, cf. Hippocr. Vict., 1, 11.
But this involves a dedivinised view of nature which is dominated by reciprocal conflict and in which the only rule is that of πλεονεξία, Plat. Gorg., 483c f, cf. Leg., IX, 875b. It thus carries with it the destruction not merely of the old political νόμος orientated to society but also necessarily of religion. For belief in the gods stands or falls with respect for νόμος.
Οἱ θεοὶ σθένουσι χὡ κείνων κρατῶν Νόμος· νόμῳ γὰρ τοὺς θεοὺς ἡγούμεθα, Eur. Hec., 799 f., cyf. Antiphon Or., 6, 4. That is to say, if the gods evade the dominant rule (namely, that all wrong must be expiated, 791 f.), they thereby corrupt their divinity, cf. Eur. Ion, 442 f. They prove their own right to existence by accepting the validity of just νόμος. Hence belief in God and justice rests on the νόμος, cf. Plat. Menex., 237d: δίκην καὶ θεοὺς νομίζειν. For the Sophists, however, religion is not in tension with νόμος. In the last analysis it is unmasked as a fiction of the law-giver, Critias Fr., 25, 5 ff. (II, 386 f., Diels5). The νόμοι are the work of men and are not kept without witnesses. Hence a clever mind invented the gods of retribution as constant observers and guarantors of the laws, esp. against secret infringements.13 On this view there V 4, p 1029 are not really any gods; it is just that νόμος demands belief in them (Plat. Leg., X, 889e/890a: θεοὺς … εἶναι πρῶτόν φασιν οὗτοι … οὐ φύσει, ἀλλὰ τισι νόμοις, καὶ τούτους ἄλλους ἄλλῃ, ὅπῃ ἕκαστοι ἑαυτοῖσι συνωμολόγησαν νομοθετούμενοι … ἀσέβειαί τε ἀνθρώποις ἐμπίπτουσι νέοις, ὡς οὐκ ὄντων θεῶν οἵους ὁ νόμος προστάττει διανοεῖσθαι δεῖν).
Two conclusions follow. The first is that νόμος can be overthrown only by an attack on religion, since the two are so essentially and fundamentally related. The second is that the crisis of νόμος originates and culminates in the dedivinisation of the world which is the final contribution of the 5th century: quae religionis eversio ‘naturae’ nomen invenit (Lact. Inst., III, 28, 3). This is how Plato saw it. For him rejection of the rule of the laws is equivalent to apostasy from God (Plat. Leg., IV, 701b/c; Ep., VII, 336b; in the myth of the inhabitants of Atlantis we read: μέχριπερ ἡ τοῦ θεοῦ φύσις αὐτοῖς ἐξήρκει, κατήκοοί τε ἦσαν τῶν νόμων καὶ πρὸς τὸ συγγενὲς θεῖον φιλοφρόνως εἶχον, Critias, 120e). For the mode of being and mode of operation of the gods are essentially known (cf. Plat. Leg., XII, 966c) in νόμος (θεοὺς ἡγούμενος εἶναι κατὰ νόμους οὐδεὶς πώποτε οὔτε ἔργον ἀσεβὲς ἠργάσατο ἑκὼν οὔτε λόγον ἀφῆκεν ἄνομον, ibid., X, 885b, cf. Resp., II, 365e; Leg., X, 904a). νόμος lays down how they are to be worshipped and understood, Plat. Leg., X, 890a/b. The Platonic interrelating of theology and law is simply a philosophical expression of what the fact of νομίζειν θεούς (→ 1024) implied for the Greek world.
The rescuing of νόμος which Plato attempts rests first on proving the existence of the gods and secondly on the affirmation that νόμος, as a child of νοῦς, is related to the soul and is thus also φύσει (Leg., X, 892a ff.): δεῖ … τὸν … νομοθέτην … τῷ παλαιῷ νόμῳ ἐπίκουρον γίγνεσθαι λόγῳ ὡς εἰσὶ θεοὶ …, καὶ δὴ καὶ νόμῳ αὐτῷ βοηθῆσαι καὶ τέχνῃ, ὡς ἐστὸν φύσει ἢ φύσεως οὐχ ἧττον, εἴπερ νοῦ γέ ἐστι γεννήματα (Leg., X, 890d). By finally exalting νόμος (Ep., VIII, 354e) to divine rank Plato overcame Sophist criticism of nomos at the decisive point.
e. In opposition to the Sophists Socrates’ whole thinking on νόμος begins with the very positive content of the polis. The νόμος τῆς πόλεως is the norm of his life to such a degree that he not only does not act contrary to the laws but dies because they require it, even though they are unjustly manipulated by men: προείλετο μᾶλλον τοῖς νόμοις ἐμμένων ἀποθανεῖν ἢ παρανομῶν ζῆν (Xenoph. Mem., IV, 4, 4). To this conviction of Socrates Plato gave magnificent expression in the Crito when he caused the venerable Νόμοι καὶ τὸ κοινὸν τῆς πόλεως to appear to Socrates in prison in a kind of epiphany. There is a discussion of the V 4, p 1030 right of the individual to renounce νόμος (Crito, 50a ff). The νόμοι are here presented as parents to sustain and instruct man, 51c. Man is their ἔκγονος and → δοῦλος, 50e. His relation of dependence to them differs from that to his physical parents. These νόμοι have brothers in Hades (54c), i.e., they are still valid in face of death and beyond.
f. The relation of Socrates to the laws of the state illustrates the significance of νόμος for Greek ethics. Socrates does not distinguish between his pure conscience and degenerate political morality. For the classical Greek world does not speak of personal moral conscience (→ συνείδησις) but of objective knowledge of what is right and wrong. This knowledge takes the form of law. Obedience to law is righteousness: ὁ δίκαιος ἔσται ὅ τε νόμιμος καὶ ὁ ἴσος. τὸ μὲν δίκαιον ἄρα τὸ νόμιμον καὶ τὸ ἴσον, τὸ δʼ ἄδικον τὸ παράνομον καὶ ἄνισον (Aristot. Eth. Nic., 5, 1, p. 1129a, 33 ff., cf. Xenoph. Mem., IV, 4, 13 ff.). But all virtues are included in righteousness, → δίκη, II, 179. It is impossible to exhaust in detail the full content of νόμος, which embraces the whole of life (δοκοῦσιν … τὸ καθόλου μόνον οἱ νόμοι λέγειν, Aristot. Pol., 3, 15, p. 1286a, 9 ff.), though for a more general account cf. Aristot. Eth. Nic., 5, 4, p. 1130a, 18 ff.
The goal of education is thus instruction in the spirit and ethos of the laws: παιδεία μέν ἐσθʼ ἡ παίδων … ἀγωγὴ πρὸς τὸν ὑπὸ τοῦ νόμου λόγον ὀρθὸν εἰρημένον, Plat. Leg., II, 659d; τεθράφθαι ἐν ἤθεσι νόμων εὖ πεπαιδευμένους, Plat. Leg., VI, 751c, cf. Prot., 326c/d. Indeed, law itself is an instructor, though in a very different sense from that of Paul in Gl. 3:24: πῶς ἂν ἡμῖν ὁ νόμος αὐτὸς παιδεύσειεν ἱκανῶς (Plat. Leg., VII, 809a, cf. Aristot. Pol., 3, 16, p. 1287b, 25 f.; Archytas Pyth. in Stob. Ecl., IV, 1, 135 [p. 82, 16 f., Hense]).
Obedience to law is carried so far that there can even be ref. to → δουλεύειν τοῖς νόμοις without the disparagement elsewhere implied by the term (Plat. Leg., III, 698c; 700a; IV, 715d, cf. Pl R. 7:25). This almost paradoxical usage makes it clear that νόμος exercises a dominion. Law rules (νόμοι ἄρχουσιν, Aristot. Pol., 4, 4, p. 1292a, 32, cf. Plat. Leg., IV, 715d). It does so as δεσπότης, τύραννος (Plat. Prot., 337d) or βασιλεύς (οἱ τῶν πόλεων βασιλεῖς νόμοι, Alcidamas in Aristot. Rhet., 3, 3, p. 1406a, 23, cf. Anonym. Iambl., 6, 1 [II, 402, 29, Diels5]; Plat. Ep., VIII, 354c: νόμος … κύριος ἐγένετο βασιλεὺς τῶν ἀνθρώπων). Acc. to Aristot. Eth. Nic., 10, 10, p. 1180a, 17 ff., he who lives acc. to νόμος lives κατά τινα νοῦν καὶ τάξιν ὀρθήν ἔχουσαν ἰσχύν, i.e., acc. to a spiritually determined order which also has power to enforce itself, νόμος has coercive power (ἀναγκαστικὴν ἔχει δύναμιν, a 21, cf. Antiph. Or., 6, 4). This power goes far beyond that of an individual, e.g., the father, or even the βασιλεύς etc. Bondage under law makes man a citizen in the polis (as later in the cosmos) and differentiates him from the slave, who by nature has no part or lot in the νόμοι (TGF, Fr. adesp., 326), by making him free: legum … circo omnes servi sumus, ut liberi esse possimus (Cic. Pro Cluent., 53, 146, cf. Plat. Leg., III, 701b; Aristot. Pol., 5, 9, p. 1310a, 34 ff.).
δουλεία is used positively elsewhere only in respect of the gods (esp. Apollo at Delphi), cf. Soph. Oed. Tyr., 410; Eur. Orest., 418; Ion, 309; Plat. Phaed., 85b. To be at the service of the laws is to serve the gods: καλῶς δουλεῦσαι … πρῶτον μὲν τοῖς νόμοις, ὡς ταύτην τοῖς θεοῖς οὖσαν δουλείαν (Plat. Leg., VI, 762e, cf. Plat. V 4, p 1031 Ep., VIII, 354e). To be νόμιμος is to be, not merely δίκαιος, but also εὐσεβής (Xenoph. Mem., IV, 6, 2). This seems to be esp. the Delphic piety followed by Socrates (ibid., I, 3, 1; par. IV, 3, 16). Among the many παραγγέλματα ascribed to the Delphic Apollo we find the saying: ἕπου θεῷ· νόμῳ πείθου (Stob. Ecl., III, 1, 173 [p. 125, 5, Hense]). Following God and obeying law are not without inward relationship.
For the dominion of law and the blessing of the gods guarantee the preservation of the state and the possibility of human life: ἐν ᾗ (sc. πόλει) μὲν γὰρ ἄν ἁρχόμενος ᾖ καὶ ἄκυρος νόμος, φθορὰν ὁρῶ τῇ τοιαύτῃ ἑτοίμην οὖσαν. ἐν ᾗ δʼ ἄν δεσπότης τῶν ἀρχόντων, οἱ δὲ ἄρχοντες δοῦλοι τοῦ νόμου, σωτηρίαν καὶ πάντα ὅσα θεοὶ πόλεσιν ἔδοσαν ἁγαθὰ γιγνόμενα καθορῶ (Plat. Leg., IV, 715d). The soteriological function remained a constant mark of νόμος (cf. Ps.-Plat. Min., 314d; Aristot. Rhet., 1, 4, p. 1360a, 19 f.; Dio Chrys. Or., 58, 1 [Budé]; Porphyr. Marc., 25; Ep. Arist., 240; Just. Apol., 1, 65, 1): ὁ νόμος βούλεται μὲν εὐεργετεῖν βίον ἄνθρώπων. But only when one obeys law out of conviction τὴν ἰδίην ἀρετὴν ἐνδείκνυται (Democr. Fr., 248 [II, 194, 18 ff., Diels5]). Without νόμος men would inevitably lead a θηρίων βίος (Plut. Col., 30, 1 [II, 1124d] on the basis of Plat. Leg., IX, 874e).
g. The death of Socrates in obedience to the law Plato regarded as the transition of norm and law from state institutions to the ψυχή of Socrates, i.e., to the spirit.
Within the human → ψυχή as it manifested itself to the Greeks with Socrates Plato seeks and finds, after the model of medicine, a → κόσμος and a → τάξις. Medicine obviously had no single term for the physical norm; it spoke of health, force, beauty, etc. But Plato has a single term for the κόσμος and τάξις of the soul: νόμος. Plat. Gorg., 504c: ἑμοὶ γὰρ δοκεῖ ταῖς μὲν τοῦ σώματος τάξεσιν ὄνομα εἶναι ὑγιεινόν, ἐξ οὗ ἐν αὐτῷ ἡ ὑγίεια γίγνεται καὶ ἡ ἄλλη ἀρετὴ τοῦ σώματος … ταῖς δὲ τῆς ψυχῆς τάξεσιν καὶ κοσμήσεσιν νόμιμόν τε καὶ νόμος (cf. Plat. Crit., 53c), ὅθεν καὶ νόμιμοι γίγνονται καὶ κόσμιοι· ταῦτα δʼ ἔστιν δικαιοσύνη τε καὶ σωφροσύνη.
Here is the basis of the Republic and the utopian legislation of the Νόμοι (cf. Leg., XII, 960d). Plato’s new and inner νόμος is that whose τάξις is controlled by the norm of the ψυχή, i.e., δικαιοσύνη and σωφροσύνη. This law is newly begotten23 in Plato from a generally valid principle, i.e., knowledge: νοῦ γέ V 4, p 1032 ἐστι γεννήματα (sc. νόμος and τέχνη) (Plat. Leg., X, 890d; cf. I, 645a/b; IV, 712a). What speaks forth from law is the spirit. In an etymological play on words in which an essential relation may be discerned Plato calls νόμος the τοῦ νοῦ διανομή (Leg., IV, 714a; cf. XII, 967c; II, 674b). In the coercive force of νόμος Aristot. sees embodied the dominion of νοῦς (Eth. Nic., X, 10, p. 1180a, 21: ὁ δὲ νόμος ἀναγκαστικὴν ἔχει δύναμιν, λόγος ὢν ἀπό τινος φρονήσεως καὶ νοῦ). He who allows νοῦς to rule in the state constitutes as ruler τὸν θεὸν καὶ τὸν νοῦν μόνους (Aristot. Pol., 3, 16, p. 1287a, 28 ff.). With this anchoring in the νοῦς the Greek concept of law again finds absolute validity in philosophical form. For it is herewith linked afresh to the divine world (cf. Plat. Leg., IV, 713a/e).
On the other hand, it is a revolutionary thought, which points to future Hellenism, when the same Plato states for the first time that the ideal is not the dominion of law, which is constantly and necessarily left behind by developments, but the rule of a righteous and kingly figure who possesses true knowledge (τὸ δʼ ἄριστον οὐ τοὺς νόμους ἐστὶν ἰσχύειν, ἀλλʼ ἄνδρα τὸν μετὰ φρονήσεως βασιλικόν … ὅτι νόμος οὐκ ἄν ποτε δύναιτο τό τε ἄριστον καὶ τὸ δικαιότατον ἀκριβῶς πᾶσιν ἅμα περιλαβὼν τὸ βέλτιστον ἐπιτάττειν, Pol., 294a/b; cf. Plat. Leg., IX, 875c/d). In Aristotle too (Pol., 3, 13, p. 1284a, 3 ff.) the man who towers over all others by reason of his ἀρετή seems to be no longer bound to any law. Not only is he over law; he himself, ὥσπερ θεὸς ἐν ἀνθρώποις (10f.), is law both for himself and for others (κατὰ δὲ τῶν τοιούτων οὐκ ἔστι νόμος· αὐτοὶ γάρ εἰσι νόμος, 13f.; cf. Eth. Nic., IV, 14, p. 1128a, 32; Plut. Alex., 52 [I, 694 f.]).
3. νόμος in Hellenism.
a. This philosophical theory became a historical reality in Hellenism. Here νόμος no longer rules as king in the polis. The will and person of the βασιλεύς has itself become νόμος (ὁ δὲ νόμος βασιλέως δόγμα, Dio Chrys. Or., 3, 43 [Budé]; cf. Anaxarch. in Plut. Alex., 52 [I, 694 f.] ὁ δὲ [sc. Alexander] … ἀνθρώπων νόμον καὶ ψόγον δεδοικώς, οἷς αὐτὸν προσήκει νόμον εἶναι καὶ ὅρον τῶν δικαίων). The divine king is the new divine source of νόμος, which is linked to him in a special way (αὐτῷ … τὸν νόμον δὲ συνόντα ἀεί, Themist. Or., 9, p. 123a [Dindorf]; cf. Isoc. Demonax., 36; Isis Hymn of Andros, 4 f. [p. 15, Peek]) and which can sometimes be called expressly → βασιλικὸς νόμος (Ps.-Plat. Min., 317a/c; Ditt. Or., II, 483, 1 [Pergamon]; cf. 1, 329, 14; Jm. 2:8). In keeping with his veneration as εἰκὼν ζῶσα (Ditt. Or., I, 90, 3) and ζηλωτὴς τοῦ Διός (Muson., p. 37, 3 f. [Hense]) the king, or even the philosopher himself, is the visible manifestation of eternal law in the cosmos, the νόμος ἔμψυχος (Muson., p. 37, 2 ff.; Archytas Pyth. in Stob. Ecl., IV, 1, 135 [p. 82, 20 f., Hense]; Diotogenes Pyth. in Stob. Ecl., IV, 7, 61 [p. 263, 19 Hense]; Philo Vit. Mos., 2, 4).
b. In Stoicism, which regards law as a basic concept, the historically developed πολιτικὸς νόμος of the class. period is replaced by cosmic and universal law. The term νόμος no longer applies with any strictness to state laws. These have sunk to the level of δόξαι ψευδεῖς: ὁ δὲ νοῦς τὸ τιμιώτατον ἐν ψυχῇ καὶ ἀρχικώτατον, V 4, p 1033 καθάπερ ἐν πόλει νόμος, οὐκ ἐπʼ ἀξόνων (axle; then the wooden tablets of law in Athens which were turned on an axle) γεγραμμένος, … οὐδʼ ὑπὸ Σόλωνὸ ἢ Λυκούργου τεθείς· ἀλλὰ θεὸς μὲν ὁ νομοθέτης, ἄγραφὸ δὲ ὁ νόμος … Καὶ μόνος ἂν εἴη οὗτος νόμος· οἱ δὲ ἄλλως, οἱ καλούμενοι, δόξαι ψευδεῖς … κατʼ ἐκείνους τοὺς νόμους καὶ Ἀριστείδης ἔφευγεν … καὶ Σεκράτης ἀπέθνῃσκεν, κατὰ δὲ τὸν θεῖον τοῦτον νόμον καὶ Ἀριστείδης δίκαιος ἦν … καὶ Σωκράτης φιλόσοφος. ἐκείνων τῶν νόμων ἔργον δημοκρατία καὶ δικαστήρια … τούτου τοῦ νόμου ἔργον ἐλευθερία καὶ ἀρετή … ὑπʼ ἐκείνων τῶν νόμων … ἐκπέμπονται … οἱ στόλοι … πολεμεῖται θάλαττα … ὑπὸ τούτων τῶν νόμων … εὐνομεῖται πόλις, εἰρήνην ἄγει γῆ καὶ θάλαττα … ὦ νόμοι νόμων πρεσβύτεροι … οἷς ὁ μὲν ἑκὼν ὑπορρίψας ἑαυτὸν, ἐλεύθερος … καὶ ἀδεὴς ἐφημέρων νόμων (Max. Tyr., 6, 5 [Hobein]). The individual of the Hell. world can now seek and find the one true and divine νόμος only in the cosmos (cf. Plut. De Exilio, 5 [II, 601b]). For him the world is the state. Here there reigns a single law (ἡ μὲν γὰρ μεγαλόπολις ὅδε ὁ κόσμος ἐστὶ καὶ μιᾷ χρῆται πολιτείᾳ καὶ νόμῳ ἑνί, Chrysipp. Fr., 323 [III, 79, 38 f., v. Arnim]; Plut. Alex. Fort. Virt., 1, 6 [II, 329a]; Philo Op. Mund., 143) which, being the foundation of all society, binds even men and gods together (Chrysipp. Fr., 335 [III, 82, 18, v. Arnim]). As general and supreme reason (νόμος εἷς, λόγος κοινὸς πάντων τῶν νοερῶν ζῴων, M. Ant., 7, 9) this permeates all nature and determines the moral conduct of men (Chrysipp. Fr., 314 [III, 77, 34 ff., v. Arnim]). The spiritually determined order of the world is identical with the concept of law. Law again finds its ultimate basis in the religious sphere, whether νόμος be directly equated with θεός (II, 315, 23, v. Arnim) or deity equated with the unmoved27 but all-moving law of the cosmos (νόμος μὲν γὰρ ἡμῖν ἰσοκλινὴς ὁ θεός, Ps.-Aristot. Mund., 6, p. 400b, 28 ff.). Adjustment is made to popular religion by giving the name of Zeus to this cosmic νόμος (ὁ νόμος ὁ κοινός, ὅσπερ ἐστὶν ὁ ὀρθὸς λόγος, διὰ πάντων ἐρχόμενος, ὁ αὐτὸς ὢν τῷ Διΐ καθηγεμόνι τούτῳ τῆς τῶν ὄντων διοικήσεως ὄντι, Zeno Fr., 162 [I, 43, v. Arnim == Diog. L., 7, 88]). In the Cleanthes hymn too (Fr., 537 [I, 121 ff., v. Arnim]) all-powerful Zeus controls the world by νόμος on the one side, but on the other, in the final verses, he is identified with the cosmic order whose magnifying is the supreme code for both men and gods (v. 38f. [I, 123, 4 f., v. Arnim]). Only the κακοί … οὔτʼ ἐσορῶσι θεοῦ κοινὸν νόμον, οὔτε κλύουσιν, ᾧ κεν πειθόμενοι σὺν νῷ (cf. Heracl. Fr., 114) βίον ἐσθλὸν ἔχοιεν (v. 24f. [I, 122, 20 f., v. Arnim]).
In the strength of the indwelling νοῦς or λόγος man must decide for νόμος and a life commensurate with it (ὁ γὰρ λόγος τοῦ φιλοσόφου νόμος αὐθαίρετος καὶ ἴδιός ἐστιν, Plut. Stoic. Rep., 1 [II, 1033b]). But in so doing he does not obey an absolute demand which comes from without or from another world. He comes to himself and achieves his freedom (ὅσοι δὲ μετὰ νόμου ζῶσιν ἐλεύθεροι, Chrysipp. Fr., 360 [III, 87, 43 f., v. Arnim], cf. Max. Tyr., 33, 5; M. Ant., 10, 25). To fulfil the law, then, is no basic impossibility. It is that whereto the efforts and destiny of man are directed by nature. Thus the νόμος τῆς φύσεως καὶ τοῦ θεοῦ or the θεῖος νόμος which Epictet. proclaims (Diss., I, 29, 13/19) is in content simply the moral law of philosophy: τίς δʼ ὁ νόμος ὁ θεῖοσ; τὰ ἴδια τηρεῖν, τῶν ἀλλοτρίων μὴ ἀντιποιεῖσθαι, ἀλλὰ διδομένοις μὲν χρῆσθαι, μὴ διδόμενα δὲ μὴ ποθεῖν, ἀφαιρουμένου δέ τινος ἀποδιδόναι εὐλύτως καὶ αὐτόθεν (by easy and immediate release), χάριν εἰδότα οὗ ἐχρήσατο χρόνου (Diss., II, 6, 28, cf. I, 29, 4). These are for Epictetus οἱ ἐκεῖθεν ἀπεσταλμένοι νόμοι (Diss., IV, 3, 11/12) which alone can lead to a happy life. When V 4, p 1034 the philosopher voluntarily follows them he is ἐλεύθερος … καὶ φίλος θεοῦ (IV, 3, 9). For in so doing he follows God. This happens, for instance, when to the saying in Plut. Aud., 1 (II, 37d): ταὐτόν ἐστιν τὸ ἕπεσθαι θεῷ καὶ τὸ πείθεσθαι λόγῳ, is added Plut. Ad Principem Ineruditum, 3, 1 (II, 780c): ὁ “νόμος ὁ πάντων βασιλεὺς θνατῶν τε καὶ ἀθανάτων” ὡς ἔφη Πίνδαρος, οὐκ ἐν βιβλίοις ἔξω γεγραμμένος οὐδέ τισι ξύλοις, ἀλλʼ ἔμψυχος ὢν ἐν αὐτῷ λόγος, ἀεὶ συνοικῶν καὶ παραφυλάττων καὶ μηδέποτε τὴν ψυχὴν ἐῶν ἔρημον ἡγεμονίας.
Along with its cosmic extension νόμος thus undergoes on the other side very strong interiorisation. It is now written on the inward parts of man, on the soul (Max. Tyr., 27, 6).31 Hence M. Ant., X, 13, 2 can list it with πίστις, αἰδώς, ἀλήθεια, ἀγαθὸς δαίμων as one of the most valuable constituents of man’s being.
c. Neo-Platonism added no new features to the Gk. concept of law. In it different basic motifs replaced the constitutive Platonic and Stoic view of this matter. For Plotin. νόμος has only a subordinate role in ethics and the doctrine of the soul. A happy life cannot be allotted to those who have not done what makes them worthy of happiness, Plot. Enn., III, 2, 4. This is the aim of of οἱ ἐν τῷ παντὶ νόμοι, III, 2, 8. Plot. sees here the operation of the divine world which keeps man in being by the νόμος of providence, III, 2, 9. Accusation is made against Gnostic teaching that with the divine πρόνοια it undervalues also the legal order of this world (πάντας νόμους τοὺς ἐνταῦθα) and makes a mockery of ἀρετή, II, 9, 15. For all wrong is punished, and nothing can evade what is laid down ἐν τῷ τοῦ παντὸς νόμῳ, III, 2, 4. The same applies to all embodiments of the soul:33 ἀναπόδραστος γὰρ ὁ θεῖος νόμος ὁμοῦ ἔχων ἐν ἑαυτῷ τὸ ποιῆσαι τὸ κριθὲν ἤδη, IV, 3, 24. The Neo-Platonic thinker Porphyrios (Ad Marc., 25/27) developed an express doctrine of νόμος in three stages: τρεῖς δὲ νόμοι διακεκρισθωσαν οἵδε· εἷς μὲν ὁ τοῦ θεου, ἕτερος δὲ ὁ τῆς θνητῆς φύσεως, τρίτος δὲ ὁ θετὸς κατʼ ἔθνη καὶ πόλεις … ὁ δʼ αὖ θεῖος (sc. νόμος) ὑπὸ μὲν τοῦ νοῦ σωτηρίας ἕνεκα ταῖς λογικαῖς ψυχαῖς … διετάχθη, διʼ ἀληθείας δὲ τῶν … πεπραγμένων εὑρίσκεται (25) … ἀγνοεῖται μὲν ψυχῇ διʼ ἀφροσύνην καὶ ἀκολασίαν ἀκαθάρτῳ, ἐκλάμπει δὲ διʼ ἀπαθείας καὶ φρονήσεως (26).
d. Late antiquity follows for the most part Orphic Platonic views of νόμος, esp. Plat. Leg., IV, 716a == Orph. Fr. (Kern), 21 (Kern); Gorg., 523a; Phaedr., 248c; Tim., 41e etc.; but it interprets these in terms of cosmic theology: τὸν δὲ δὴ Νόμον τοῦτον ὅτι θεὸν ἡγεῖσθαι δεῖ συνοχέα τῶν τε εἱμαρμένων νόμων, οὓς ὁ ἐν Τιμαίῳ δημιουργὸς ἐγγράφει ταῖς ψυχαῖς, καὶ τῶν εἰς πᾶσαν τὴν τοῦ κόσμου πολιτείαν διατεινόντων, ἠκούσαμεν πολλάκις τῶν τε θεολόγων αὐτὸν ἐξυμνούντων καὶ τοῦ Πλάτωνος ἔν τε Γοργίᾳ καὶ ἐν Νόμοις … οἱ μὲν ἀληθεῖς νόμοι τῶν κοσμικῶν εἰσι νόμων εἰκόνες, οἱ δὲ ἡμαρτημένοι νόμοι μέν, ἀλλʼ ἐσκιαγραφημένοι τινὲς ὄντες ἀποπτώσεις ἐκείνων ὑπάρχουσιν, Procl. in Rem Publ., II, 307, 20 ff. (Kroll). cf. in Tim., I, 203, 28 f. Along with a creative Νόμος, which is God and πάρεδρος τοῦ Διός (Orph. Fr. (Kern), 160 [Kern])—πρὸ γὰρ τῶν ἐγκοσμίων ἐστὶν ὁ δημιουργικὸγ νόμος τῷ Δΐ παρεδρεύων καὶ συνδιακοσμῶν αὐτῷ πᾶσαν τὴν ἐν τῷ παντὶ προμηθίαν, Procl. in Tim., I, 156, 9 ff., cf. Orph. Fr. (Kern), 159 (Kern)—there is a richly integrated system of cosmic νόμοι (Procl. in Tim., I, 136, 13 ff.; 397, 22 ff.) which find V 4, p 1035 their comprehensive unity in Adrasteia: ἡ πάντων ὁμοῦ τῶν νόμων τῶν τε ἐγκοσμίων καὶ ὑπερκοσμίων, τῶν τε εἱμαρμένων καὶ Διΐων (εἰσὶ γὰρ καὶ Δίϊοι νόμοι καὶ Κρόνιοι, θεῖοί τε καὶ ὑπερκόσμιοι καὶ ἐγκόσμιοι) ἡ πάντων τούτων τὰ μέτρα ἑναίως ἐν ἑαυτῇ συλλαβοῦσα καὶ συνέχουσα. αὕτη ἐστὶν ἡ θεὸς Ἀδράστεια (Hermias in Plat. Phaedr., 248c [p. 161, 15 ff., Couvr.] == Orph. Fr. (Kern), 105 [Kern]).
4. The Greek Concept of νόμος and the New Testament.
As distinct from the law which comes by revelation the νόμος of the Greeks proceeds from the spirit (νοῦς). Hence genuine law is no mere imperative. It is that wherein a being, or something of intrinsic validity, is discovered and apprehended: ὁ νόμος ἄρα βούλεται τοῦ ὄντος εἶναι ἐξεύρεσις (Ps.-Plat. Min., 315a, cf. Plat. Polit., 300c/e). It is “the ancient, valid and effective order which does not merely issue orders but creates order, which does not merely command, require or prohibit but rules, which evokes as it were its own fulfilment, and which upholds itself, or is upheld, in face of non-fulfilment,” Cr.-Kö., 749.34 In this its essential nature νόμος has something in common with the Greek gods. Only thus can one explain the command: δεῖ δὲ καὶ τοὺς νόμους τῆς πατρίδος καθάπερ τινὰς θεοὺς δευτέρους συντηρεῖν (Hierocles Stoicus in Stob. Ecl., III, 39, 36 [p. 733, 10 f.]). Like the gods, νόμος has supreme and terrible power over all who seek to evade it. Like them, however, it is also encircled by supreme ideality, for it is the only → σωτηρία (→ 1031) for those who are obedient to it (οὐ γὰρ κρεῖσσόν ποτε τῶν νόμων γιγνώσκειν χρὴ καὶ μελετᾶν. κούφα γὰρ δαπάνα (not much exertion is required) νομίζειν ἰσχὺν τόδʼ ἔχειν, ὅ τι ποτʼ ἄρα τὸ δαιμόνιον, τὸ τʼ ἐν χρόνῳ μακρῷ νόμιμον ἀεὶ φύσει τε πεφυκός, Eur. Ba., 890 ff.). It is only natural that the νόμος both of the polis and the cosmos should thus be presented continually as God: ὁ γὰρ θεὸς μέγιστος ἀνθρώποις νόμος (TGF Fr. adesp., 471, cf. Plat. Ep., 8, 354e; Pind. Fr., 169; Aristot. Pol., 3, 16, p. 1287a, 28 ff.; Procl. in Rem Publ., II, 307, 20 [Kroll]; Philodem. Philos. Pietat., 11 [II, 315, 23, v. Arnim]) or mythico-theologically as Zeus: ὁ μὲν Ζεὺς … αὐτὸς … νόμων ὁ πρεσβύτατος καὶ τελειότατος (Plut. Ad Principem Ineruditum, 4, 2 [II, 781b], cf. Zeno Fr., 162 [I, 43, v. Arnim == Diog. L., 7, 88]; → 1024 f.).
With its understanding of the concept of law the Greek world missed the true meaning of law from the NT standpoint. For, to the Greek, law is never that which, rightly understood, crushes him and reduces him to despair by making him aware that he cannot keep it.36 On the contrary, because it no longer has an objective historical νόμος, and philosophy can no longer supply this, later antiquity despairs of law.
Gutbrod, W., & Kleinknecht, H. (1964–). νόμος, ἀνομία, ἄνομος, ἔννομος, νομικός, νόμιμος, νομοθέτης, νομοθεσία, νομοθετέω, παρανομία, παρανομέω. G. Kittel, G. W. Bromiley, & G. Friedrich (Eds.), Theological dictionary of the New Testament (electronic ed., Vol. 4, pp. 1023–1035). Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans.