Flu, Influenza, and Ancient Greece

I have the flu.

Tengo gripe.

Ich habe Grippe.

Ἔχω ________.

In 412 BC Hippocrates—often called the father of medicine—described a disease at Perinthus in Northern Greece that sounds like what we call influenza. Hippocrates’ discussion seems to be the first description of the disease, but he did not use any word related to our current term.

I am almost certain I will not be present at the church on Sunday. I hope all of you have a wonderful weekend.

Sunday, March 19: The Seventh Sign–Jesus Raises Lazarus

We will read John 11:17–54, and 12:9–11. These verses include the raising of Lazarus, a plot to kill Jesus, and a plot to kill Lazarus.

The raising of Lazarus is the last of the signs in the section of John’s Gospel that scholar often call the “Book of Signs.” It is the catalyst that propels the narrative into a strong focus on Jesus coming death portrayed in the “Book of Glory” (chapters 13–20).

Jesus raises Lazarus to life, painting by Jesus Mafa
Jesus raises Lazarus to life, by Jesus Mafa


Sunday, March 12–More on Nicodemus’ visit with Jesus

On March 5 we read John 9:1–12, the healing of a man born blind—the sixth of the signs found in the first half of John’s Gospel. Last Sunday (March 13) we continued with 9:13–34 as well as a section on spiritual blindness in John 9:35–41.

William Brassy Hole, 1846-1917

At the end of class we began reading the story of Nicodemus’ visit with Jesus in John 3:1–21. We will continue that discussion tomorrow morning. I have uploaded the presentation I will be using. You can view it here.

This story embodies both of the focal points of this class. There are clear elements that fed later anti-Jewish attitudes in the centuries following the writing of John’s Gospel, and there are clear elements that fed Christian spirituality and mystical experience. Come discuss both with us tomorrow morning!