1 Timothy 3:16

1 Timothy 3:16

There's no magic bullet for determining if a stretch of text is parenthetical. You just have to analyze the syntax and, if that's the best way to make sense of it, that's how I'd take it. I'm not sure we have quite the same perspective on parentheses, though. I don't see anything parenthetical in the text you've quoted. Can you explain why you see it that way? Statistics: Posted by timothy_p_mcmahon — March 17th, 2017, 12:56 am
I found a very readable summary of the text critical questions on lumina.bible.org. I don't want to debate text critical questions here, and I don't want to claim that the conclusions this article reaches are correct, but a lot of words like "hymn theory" and such have been thrown around in this thread, and this quote should at least clarify what these various terms mean.
lumina.bible.org wrote: The Byzantine text along with a few other witnesses (אc Ac C2 D2 Ψ [88 pc] 1739 1881 Ï vgms) read θεός for ὅς. Most significant among these witnesses is 1739; the second correctors of some of the other mss tend to conform to the medieval standard, the Byzantine text, and add no independent voice to the discussion. A few mss have ὁ θεός (so 88 pc), a reading that is a correction on the anarthrous θεός. On the other side, the masculine relative pronoun ὅς is strongly supported by א* A* C* F G 33 365 pc Did Epiph. Significantly, D* and virtually the entire Latin tradition read the neuter relative pronoun, ὅ, a reading that indirectly supports ὅς since it could not easily have been generated if θεός had been in the text. Thus, externally, there is no question as to what should be considered original: The Alexandrian and Western traditions are decidedly in favor of ὅς. Internally, the evidence is even stronger. What scribe would change θεός to ὅς intentionally? “Who” is not only a theologically pale reading by comparison; it also is much harder (since the relative pronoun has no obvious antecedent, probably the reason for the neuter pronoun of the Western tradition). Intrinsically, the rest of 3:16, beginning with ὅς, appears to form a six-strophed hymn. As such, it is a text that is seemingly incorporated into the letter without syntactical connection. Hence, not only should we not look for an antecedent for ὅς (as is often done by commentators), but the relative pronoun thus is not too hard a reading (or impossible, as Dean Burgon believed). Once the genre is taken into account, the relative pronoun fits neatly into the author’s style (cf. also Col 1:15; Phil 2:6 for other places in which the relative pronoun begins a hymn, as was often the case in poetry of the day). On the other hand, with θεός written as a nomen sacrum, it would have looked very much like the relative pronoun: οϲ vs. θ̅ϲ̅. Thus, it may have been easy to confuse one for the other. This, of course, does not solve which direction the scribes would go, although given their generally high Christology and the bland and ambiguous relative pronoun, it is doubtful that they would have replaced θεός with ὅς. How then should we account for θεός? It appears that sometime after the 2nd century the θεός reading came into existence, either via confusion with ὅς or as an intentional alteration to magnify Christ and clear up the syntax at the same time. Once it got in, this theologically rich reading was easily able to influence all the rest of the mss it came in contact with (including mss already written, such as א A C D). That this reading did not arise until after the 2nd century is evident from the Western reading, ὅ. The neuter relative pronoun is certainly a “correction” of ὅς, conforming the gender to that of the neuter μυστήριον. What is significant in this reading is (1) since virtually all the Western witnesses have either the masculine or neuter relative pronoun, the θεός reading was apparently unknown to them in the 2nd century (when the “Western” text seems to have originated, though its place of origination was most likely in the east); they thus supply strong indirect evidence of ὅς outside of Egypt in the 2nd century; (2) even 2nd century scribes were liable to misunderstand the genre, feeling compelled to alter the masculine relative pronoun because it appeared to them to be too harsh. The evidence, therefore, for ὅς is quite compelling, both externally and internally. As TCGNT 574 notes, “no uncial (in the first hand) earlier than the eighth or ninth century (Ψ) supports θεός; all ancient versions presuppose ὅς or ὅ; and no patristic writer prior to the last third of the fourth century testifies to the reading θεός.” Thus, the cries of certain groups that θεός has to be original must be seen as special pleading in this case. To argue that heretics tampered with the text here is self-defeating, for most of the Western fathers who quoted the verse with the relative pronoun were quite orthodox, strongly affirming the deity of Christ. They would have dearly loved such a reading as θεός. Further, had heretics introduced a variant to θεός, a far more natural choice would have been Χριστός (Cristos, “Christ”) or κύριος (kurios, “Lord”), since the text is self-evidently about Christ, but it is not self-evidently a proclamation of his deity. (See ExSyn 341-42, for a summary discussion on this issue and additional bibliographic references.)
Statistics: Posted by Jonathan Robie — June 19th, 2014, 1:41 pm
 
Steven Avery wrote: In fact, as I write this, I want to add another question. Is this two-step constructio ad sensum seen in Greek grammar? Clearly, a personal pronoun can be two-step, personal pronoun to the proper name. However, one word concept, μυστήριον, pointing to a second related yet quite distinct noun or name (Christ Jesus)? Are there similar examples?
Abbott-Smith has a rather nice entry for ὅς that provides quite a few examples of constructio ad sensum for this pronoun in the New Testament.
Abbott-Smith wrote: ὅς: pronoun I. As demonstr. pron. = οὗτος, ὅδε, this, that, also for αὐτός, chiefly in nom.: ὅς δέ, but he (cf. ἦ δὲ ὅς, freq. in Plat.), Mk 15:23, Jo 5:11; ὃς μὲν . . . ὃς δέ, the one . . . the other, Mt 21:35, 22:5, 25:15, Lk 23:33, Ac 27:14, Ro 14:5, I Co 11:21, II Co 2:18, Ju 22; neut., ὃ μὲν . . . ὃ δέ, the one . . . the other, some . . . some, Mt 13:8, 23, Ro 9:21; ὃς (ὃ) μὲν . . . (ἄλλος (ἄλλο)) . . . ἕτερος, Mk 4:4, Lk 8:5, I Co 12:8-10; οὓς μέν, absol., I Co 12:28; ὃς μὲν . . . ὁ δέ, Ro 14:2. II. As relat. pron., who, which, what, that; 1. agreeing in gender with its antecedent, but differently governed as to case: Mt 2:9, Lk 9:9, Ac 20:18, Ro 2:29, al. mult. 2. In variation from the common construction; (a) in gender, agreeing with a noun in apposition to the antecedent: Mk 15:16, Ga 3:16, Eph 6:17, al.; constr. ad sensum: Jo 6:9, Col 2:19, I Ti 3:16, Re 13:14, al.; (b) in number, constr. ad sensum: Ac 15:36, II Pe 3:1; (c) in case, by attraction to the case of the antecedent (Bl., §50, 2): Jo 4:18, Ac 3:21, Ro 15:18, I Co 6:19, Eph 1:8, al. 3. The neut. ὅ with nouns of other gender and with phrases, which thing, which term: Mk 3:17 12:42, Jo 1:39, Col 3:14, al.; with a sentence, Ac 2:32, Ga 2:10, I Jo 2:8, al. 4. With ellipse of a demonstrative (οὗτος or ἐκεῖνος), before or after: before, Mt 20:23, Lk 7:43, Ro 10:14, al.; after, Mt 10:38, Mk 9:40, Jo 19:22, Ro 2:1 al. 5. Expressing purpose, end or cause: Mt 11:10 (who = that he may), Mk 1:2, He 12:6 al. 6. C. prep, as periphrasis for conjc.: ἀνθ’ ὧν ( = ἀντὶ τούτων ὧν), because, Lk 1:20, al.; wherefore, Lk 12:3; ἐξ οὗ, since, for that, Ro 5:12; ἀφ’ οὗ, since (temporal), Lk 13:25; ἐξ οὗ, whence, Phl 3:20; etc. 7. With particles: ὃς ἄν (ἐάν), v.s. ἄν, ἐάν; ὃς καί, Mk 3:19, Jo 21:20, Ro 5:2, al.; ὃς καὶ αὐτός, Mt 27:57. 8. Gen., οὗ, absol., as adv. (v.s. οὗ).
Here are some examples using constructio ad sensum with ὃς that are particularly similar to Ὃς ἐφανερώθη ἐν σαρκί in 1 Tim 3:16.
John 6:9 wrote: Ἔστιν παιδάριον ὧδε ὃς ἔχει πέντε ἄρτους κριθίνους καὶ δύο ὀψάρια
παιδάριον is neuter. ὅς is the masculine form.
Colossians 2:19 wrote: καὶ οὐ κρατῶν τὴν κεφαλήν, ἐξ οὗ πᾶν τὸ σῶμα διὰ τῶν ἁφῶν καὶ συνδέσμων ἐπιχορηγούμενον καὶ συμβιβαζόμενον αὔξει τὴν αὔξησιν τοῦ θεοῦ.
κεφαλή is feminine. The genitive οὗ can be masculine or neuter, but not feminine.
Rev 13:14 wrote: καὶ πλανᾷ τοὺς κατοικοῦντας ἐπὶ τῆς γῆς διὰ τὰ σημεῖα ἃ ἐδόθη αὐτῷ ποιῆσαι ἐνώπιον τοῦ θηρίου, λέγων τοῖς κατοικοῦσιν ἐπὶ τῆς γῆς ποιῆσαι εἰκόνα τῷ θηρίῳ, ὃς ἔχει τὴν πληγὴν τῆς μαχαίρης καὶ ἔζησεν.
θηρίον is neuter. ὅς is the masculine form. Statistics: Posted by Jonathan Robie — June 19th, 2014, 12:05 pm
 
Barry Hofstetter wrote: Well stated, Stephen. I don't have too much to add here -- I think your analysis of Col 1:27 and 4:3 is spot on.
Agreed.
Barry Hofstetter wrote: I would emphasize very simply that grammar is a function of context, and that an author, and particularly one fluent in the language in which he is writing, sometimes has choices. An author sometimes says surprising things, things which don't accord with our limited sense of the way the language should work. I think that is the case here. Could Paul have written the neuter at 1 Timothy 3:16? Certainly, but this would also change the meaning of the text to refer to the fact of the μυστήριον rather than its content. By using the masculine relative pronoun Paul is saying not that the word μυστήριον is the literal antecedent of the pronoun, but that the meaning or content of the "mystery" is the assumed antecedent, and in context that is Jesus Christ.
Very well said.
Barry Hofstetter wrote: I think that the authors that Steven cited are just a bit too "rule bound" in their attempt to understand the text. So were some of the scribes, who attempted to change the pronoun to the neuter...
In particular, I think the whole point of constructio ad sensum is that is not taking its gender or number from the word with which it should agree according to "the rules", but from some other word that this word implies in the given context. It happens in English too, and is used by respected authors. I fished these examples out of Wikipedia:
"I would have every body marry if they can do it properly."— Austen, Mansfield Park (1814)
 
Caesar: "No, Cleopatra. No man goes to battle to be killed." Cleopatra: "But they do get killed" —Shaw, Caesar and Cleopatra (1901)
 
"A person can't help their birth."— W. M. Thackeray, Vanity Fair (1848)
I think most English speakers know exactly what these writers meant, and these sentences make good sense. I don't think anyone would use the constructio ad sensum in these sentences to prove that Austen, Shaw, or Thackeray did not actually write them. I think it's easier to get rule bound about a foreign language, a language we learned by the rules. Statistics: Posted by Jonathan Robie — June 19th, 2014, 9:06 am
 
Stephen Hughes wrote:
Steven Avery quoting Stephen W. Frary wrote:… this does not seem to happen elsewhere in the Pauline corpus. Col 1:27 refers to Christ as a mystery among the gentiles: τὸ πλοῦτος τῆς δόξης τοῦ μυστηρίου τούτου ἐν τοῖς ἔθνεσιν ὅ ἐστιν Χριστὸς ἐν ὑμῖν ἡ ἐλπὶς τῆς δόξης . Although the neuter "mystery” is the antecedent to the relative pronoun, the real subject is the masculine "Χριστὸς" yet the pronoun is the neuter "ὅ " Col 4:3 reads: τὸ μυστήριον τοῦ Χριστοῦ δι’ ὃ καὶ δέδεμαι . If Χριστοῦ is taken here both as an epexegetical genitive and as the nearest antecedent, again there is no gender agreement with the pronoun in the relative clause following. … the pattern, then, is for the relative pronoun not to assimilate to the gender of the antecedent when Christ is described as a mystery …
I see the relative in Colosians 1:27 as needed because of the demonstrative τοῦτο in τὸ μυστήριον τοῦτο. Using that relative, the authour explains which mystery he meant when he indicated it using "this / τοῦτο". That is to say, it is required in the syntax of the language. That would logically be followed by the same gender - neuter. Just to make sure we are on the same page in the grammar book, let me say something about ἐστι. The word ἐστι requires that one of things it refers to be third person singular, and the other can be anything. There is no need for agreement of gender across the verb to be, as is being implied by saying here that the relative should be masculine. Even if there was some "random" change in grammar to require agreement in gender (as erroneously suggested), the single word Χριστός can't be considered as a "real subject". The pithy phrase expressing a revealed relgious truth (a μυστήριον) is "Χριστὸς ἐν ὑμῖν ἡ ἐλπὶς τῆς δόξης". It is usual for Greek to refer to whole phrases in the neuter singular. That would require a neuter singular relative too. The reference to Colosians 4:3 is bold, but unconvincing. Greek is not a language that is primarily understood on a word-order basis. Being as it is neuter, the relative pronoun refers to τὸ μυστήριον - the most recent neuter, that is to say, the μυστήριον - a Christian message to Christians. The Greek word μυστήριον is not a "mystery" (it's transliterated into English, not translated), or something that is unknown to us, as mystery means in contemporary English. A μυστήριον is part of what we now-a-days refer to as the "Gospel message". At an earlier time the Christian faith was taught in a two-step process - first, what you tell outsiders to let them believe, such as you see in the book of Acts, and then second the other truths of faith were revealed / shared with those who were Christians to explain / give meaning to their ritual or mystical experience of God - not exactly secrets and not exactly fit for general consuption.
Well stated, Stephen. I don't have too much to add here -- I think your analysis of Col 1:27 and 4:3 is spot on. I would emphasize very simply that grammar is a function of context, and that an author, and particularly one fluent in the language in which he is writing, sometimes has choices. An author sometimes says surprising things, things which don't accord with our limited sense of the way the language should work. I think that is the case here. Could Paul have written the neuter at 1 Timothy 3:16? Certainly, but this would also change the meaning of the text to refer to the fact of the μυστήριον rather than its content. By using the masculine relative pronoun Paul is saying not that the word μυστήριον is the literal antecedent of the pronoun, but that the meaning or content of the "mystery" is the assumed antecedent, and in context that is Jesus Christ. I don't think that it is necessary to posit a text critical issue or a quotation to explain the grammar, and yes, I think that the authors that Steven cited are just a bit too "rule bound" in their attempt to understand the text. So were some of the scribes, who attempted to change the pronoun to the neuter... Statistics: Posted by Barry Hofstetter — June 18th, 2014, 10:00 pm
Hi Jonathan, The question of whether a relative pronoun has an antecedent is a fundamental question. On the CT of 1 Timothy 3:16, Barry Hofstetter and a few others say that the antecedent search often spoken of is unnecessary. (e.g. the church of the living God and the living God have been given as the antecedent, Christ Jesus in v. 13 as well). And the gender discordance (with μυστήριον, the otherwise natural antecedent in the CT) is not a real issue and take the position (apparently, please correct me if this is not accurate) the actual antecedent is μυστήριον (mystery). Thus the masculine grammar is ok, it is explained, because the mystery refers to Jesus Christ, and Jesus is masculine. ergo, constructio ad sensum. Others see this as a bit convoluted and difficult and not conformable to Pauline and New Testament style. (And this is where the two Colossian verses were given by Stephen Frary, noting that this is only an emphasis on the word μυστήριον, and other verses are often put into the analogy cauldron.) Sidenote: In fact, as I write this, I want to add another question. Is this two-step constructio ad sensum seen in Greek grammar? Clearly, a personal pronoun can be two-step, personal pronoun to the proper name. However, one word concept, μυστήριον, pointing to a second related yet quite distinct noun or name (Christ Jesus)? Are there similar examples? And thus, often there are offered different reasons for the CT grammar, the most popular since the late 1800s being the hymn or confession, claiming an external non-extant antecedent. Or some simply reject the CT grammar as a solecism. My question has been simple .. why do we have such a major disconnect? And does anybody want to add commentary and analysis on the question? I saw the 2013 thread after the OP, otherwise I would have posted on that thread, to avoid repetition. As to your personal request, you have a PM, which includes my note to Barry. All my own words, staying close to the major issues. And my goal is simply to hear solid exposition, iron sharpeneth. :) Steven Avery PS. Note of correction to a poster above, mystery is definitely not a transliteration from Greek to English, it is a translation. The etymology of mystery includes Old French, Latin and Greek, and their are other words that have been used in translation. However, a transliteration would be musterion. Statistics: Posted by Steven Avery — June 18th, 2014, 8:05 pm
 
Steven Avery wrote: As for the question from Barry, I sent him a note in private message. I'll be happy to send you one, if appropriate.
Yes, please do. Statistics: Posted by Jonathan Robie — June 18th, 2014, 4:27 pm
My request:
Jonathan Robie wrote: Steven, in your own words, what is your grammatical question?
Your response:
Steven Avery wrote: If you want this as a simple question -- What is the forum opinions of these comments about the Critical Text of 1 Timothy 3:16 (emphases added): [color=#400000]Daniel Wallace - "probably an embedded hymn fragment, there is no real antecedent". Gordon Fee - 1 Tim. 3:16. ... the connection of the ὅς to the rest of the sentence is ungrammatical, thus suggesting that it belonged to an original hymn (and should be translated with a "soft" antecedent, "he who"). Murray J. Harris - Coming after the neuter noun μυστήριον, the masculine relative pronoun ὅς is the harder reading and was therefore more prone to scribal correction ('The removal of an apparent solecism," WH 2: appendix 133)... (p. 267) two grammatical difficulties— the lack of concord with μυστήριον and the absence of an explicit antecedent ... a "weak" relative pronoun ὅς that lacked an antecedent ..." (p. 268) - Jesus as God: The New Testament Use of Theos in Reference to Jesus (2008)
No, sorry, these are not your own words. I can't tell if you are capable of discussing Greek texts, or only able to quote authorities on a subject that interests you. That's why I asked. I know you can cut and paste and cite authorities, but as far as I can tell, you aren't really engaging the grammatical discussion in this thread. Stephen and Barry have already responded to your question, can you paraphrase their responses in your own words? Keep it simple please, and please don't quote a whole bunch of opinions from other people, paraphrase what they said, and explain whether you agree that they have provided a plausible reading for this text, and why. I don't think you need a long post to do so. Statistics: Posted by Jonathan Robie — June 18th, 2014, 4:23 pm
Hi,
Jonathan Robie wrote: Steven, in your own words, what is your grammatical question? I'm having a hard time with this line of reasoning:
Stephen Frary pointed out that one problem is that analogous verses have no such constructio ad sensum relating Jesus Christ to "mystery".
So if Paul doesn't do it elsewhere, he can't be doing it here? I don't buy that.
Surely it is possible to believe that an apostolic author writes in an exceptional way in the NT text. Against their style and in a manner that men like Wallace, Fee and Harris peg as ungrammatical internally. (Allowing that they consider the antecedent to be external in an unknown hymn or liturgy or confession.) A lot of that type of evaluation about whether a solecism or ungrammatical component is possible depends on your view of the integrity and consistency and excellence of the Gospel text. Which is generally not a topic. The reasoning of Stephen Frary, as I see it, is simply that when you look at exceptional grammar claims (And this is a claim, not a textual fact, as a textual variant is involved. There are three possibilities for the autographic text.) ... it is simply proper procedure to see how the author normally writes. Exceptional claims need exceptional support. This type of auxiliary checking is what was done by Stephen Frary. If you want this as a simple question -- What is the forum opinions of these comments about the Critical Text of 1 Timothy 3:16 (emphases added): Daniel Wallace - "probably an embedded hymn fragment, there is no real antecedent". Gordon Fee - 1 Tim. 3:16. ... the connection of the ὅς to the rest of the sentence is ungrammatical, thus suggesting that it belonged to an original hymn (and should be translated with a "soft" antecedent, "he who"). Murray J. Harris - Coming after the neuter noun μυστήριον, the masculine relative pronoun ὅς is the harder reading and was therefore more prone to scribal correction ('The removal of an apparent solecism," WH 2: appendix 133)... (p. 267) two grammatical difficulties— the lack of concord with μυστήριον and the absence of an explicit antecedent ... a "weak" relative pronoun ὅς that lacked an antecedent ..." (p. 268) - Jesus as God: The New Testament Use of Theos in Reference to Jesus (2008) Here are two of the urls, for context. To what End Exegesis?: Essays Textual, Exegetical, and Theological (2001) Gordon Donald Fee http://books.google.com/books?id=b3rAGJa6Nm8C&pg=PA175 Greek Grammar and the Personality of the Holy Spirit - p. 116 (2003) https://www.ibr-bbr.org/files/bbr/BBR_2 ... Spirit.pdf Many more could be given. Almost a consensus.(Although Maurice Robinson has taken the position that the grammar is fine.) And yet, few seem aware of these comments that point out the grammatical problem. Notice that these comments are given in writings that are not directly about 1 Timothy 3:16 as the main subject. And they presume the hymn solution as the answer. (ie. The grammar is ok if you go outside the NT text, Paul was quoting an unknown source, and that source had the antecedent.) And I know it is very easy for the scholars to be wrong. Would you say they are they all trapped in rule-based grammar? Or perhaps they do have a good Greek sense about this poor relative pronoun? ============================= As for the question from Barry, I sent him a note in private message. I'll be happy to send you one, if appropriate. Steven Avery Bayside, NY Statistics: Posted by Steven Avery — June 18th, 2014, 4:03 pm
 
Barry Hofstetter wrote: Steven, please note carefully the purpose for which exists. It for those who have studied and are studying Greek. How far have you progressed in your Greek studies since last we spoke about the issue? At that time you told me that you had learned the alphabet, but little more?
If so, he should spend his time in the Beginner's Forum, and perhaps focus on things within his current abilities. http://www.ibiblio.org//forum/viewtopic.php?f=38&t=11
Jonathan Robie wrote: is about Greek texts and the Greek language, and most of the forums in require a working knowledge of Biblical Greek; that is:
  • recognition of inflected forms of verbs, nouns, pronouns, adjectives, and adverbs
  • recognition of standard syntactic structures
  • a grasp of principal parts of common irregular verbs, and the ability to recognize them in a text
In the Beginner's Forum, we welcome beginners who do not yet have a working knowledge of Biblical Greek, and are working to learn the language. We want to help. Even basic questions about the meaning of the Greek text are welcome in the Beginner's Forum, and there's no shame in mistakes. Beginners will be gently pushed toward learning these structures over time, pointed to textbooks and other aids that will help them, and coached in how to see these structures in a text. Learning a language is all about learning the structure signals, so we will try to help you learn what these signals are and how to recognize them in a text. Even in the Beginner's forum, general questions or opinions about doctrine or the meaning of the English text are not welcome.
Statistics: Posted by Jonathan Robie — June 18th, 2014, 9:41 am
Steven, in your own words, what is your grammatical question? I'm having a hard time with this line of reasoning:
Stephen Frary pointed out that one problem is that analogous verses have no such constructio ad sensum relating Jesus Christ to "mystery".
So if Paul doesn't do it elsewhere, he can't be doing it here? I don't buy that. Statistics: Posted by Jonathan Robie — June 18th, 2014, 8:04 am
Hi,
Barry Hofstetter wrote: I see it simply as a constructio ad sensum, that the mystery of godliness is specified as "the one who..." which is clearly a personal reference.
Thanks. Yes, this idea has often been discussed in the historical literature. (And I noticed just now that there was a thread here in 2013 that discusses some of these issues.) Personal Pronoun Agreement? - July, 2013 viewtopic.php?f=50&t=1964 Stephen Frary pointed out that one problem is that analogous verses have no such constructio ad sensum relating Jesus Christ to "mystery". «Who Was Manifested In The Flesh? A Consideration Of Internal Evidence In Support Of A Variant In 1 Tim 3:16A» (2003) Stephen W. Frary http://www.bsw.org/filologia-neotestame ... e-p12.html … this does not seem to happen elsewhere in the Pauline corpus. Col 1:27 refers to Christ as a mystery among the gentiles: τὸ πλοῦτος τῆς δόξης τοῦ μυστηρίου τούτου ἐν τοῖς ἔθνεσιν ὅ ἐστιν Χριστὸς ἐν ὑμῖν ἡ ἐλπὶς τῆς δόξης . Although the neuter "mystery” is the antecedent to the relative pronoun, the real subject is the masculine "Χριστὸς" yet the pronoun is the neuter "ὅ " Col 4:3 reads: τὸ μυστήριον τοῦ Χριστοῦ δι’ ὃ καὶ δέδεμαι . If Χριστοῦ is taken here both as an epexegetical genitive and as the nearest antecedent, again there is no gender agreement with the pronoun in the relative clause following. … the pattern, then, is for the relative pronoun not to assimilate to the gender of the antecedent when Christ is described as a mystery … And I will mention that Stephen Frary is not precise in referencing Archibald Thomas Robertson. The quote from Robertson "real gender (of the antecedent) rather than the grammatical" is not applied by Robertson to 1 Timothy 3:16. And Robertson is, like many, including Hort, Sadler, Plummer, Moffat, Norden, Elliott, Gundry, Sanders, Lau, Moule, Lenski, Daniel Wallace, clearly an advocate of the "hymn/confession/liturgical" answer. A grammar of the Greek New Testament in the light of historical research (1919) Archibald Thomas Robertson http://books.google.com/books?id=sRojAQAAMAAJ&pg=PA422 "As a specimen of an early Christian hymn note 1 Tim. 3:16. Harnack (The Independent, December 28. 1912) takes this as a Christmas hymn." http://books.google.com/books?id=sRojAQAAMAAJ&pg=PA1199 "in 1 Tim. 3 :16 we probably have a fragment of an early Christian hymn" Yes, I got a :) out of "Christmas hymn". Note that it was a December article, maybe Harnack was a-funning? Steven Avery Bayside, NY Statistics: Posted by Steven Avery — June 18th, 2014, 5:39 am
Very well stated, Stephen. Your "simplicity" serves you well. Apposition is a good word here... :) Statistics: Posted by Barry Hofstetter — June 16th, 2014, 7:21 am
Steven, please note carefully the purpose for which exists. It for those who have studied and are studying Greek. How far have you progressed in your Greek studies since last we spoke about the issue? At that time you told me that you had learned the alphabet, but little more? As to the question, I have a little difficulty understanding why Wallace and others come to this conclusion. They seem to have a rather rule-oriented, nearly prescriptive view of the way the grammar "should" operate in this context. I see it simply as a constructio ad sensum, that the mystery of godliness is specified as "the one who..." which is clearly a personal reference. Statistics: Posted by Barry Hofstetter — June 16th, 2014, 6:57 am
Hi, The grammar of this verse, especially in the variant that is currently in the critical text, has been the subject of controversy for over 300 years. 1 Timothy 3:16 (AV) And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifest in the flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen of angels, preached unto the Gentiles, believed on in the world, received up into glory. The Critical Text does not have "God was manifest", the distinction is well known: θεός - Received Text, almost all Greek mss ὃς - Critical Text - a few Greek mss - translated variously And I won't go into the ECW and versional support since that involves also evaluating a 3rd variant: ὃ - Codex Bezae, non-TR reading until Griesbach, supported by Grotius, Newton, Wetstein adding complexity. So we have the Critical Text, and check your Bibles for the wider section (which you may need for considering antecedents.) 3:16 (CT) καὶ ὁμολογουμένως μέγα ἐστὶν τὸ τῆς εὐσεβείας μυστήριον ὃς ἐφανερώθη ἐν σαρκί ἐδικαιώθη ἐν πνεύματι ὤφθη ἀγγέλοις ἐκηρύχθη ἐν ἔθνεσιν ἐπιστεύθη ἐν κόσμῳ ἀνελήμφθη ἐν δόξῃ The history on this debate is very rich, a lot of fun to study, and little known. We are looking at that on Facebook forums the last week or so. And the debate is complicated by the late 1800s development of the hymn (or confession or poem) theory for the verse. An idea that was mildly considered and often rejected ... until it was kick-started by Fenton Hort. Once Hort gave his approval, the die was cast, and the theory remains very popular today in textual circles. And it is not my idea to discuss that theory here, however it would be remiss to raise the grammatical issue of the verse without mentioning the theory. The hymn theory says that the antecedent resides in the ethereal hymn and since it is a quotation, no proper antecedent has to be in the NT text for grammar solidity. Now as to the grammar of the Critical Text: As an example, Daniel Wallace has a number of comments on the grammar, including (emphasis added): ...1 Tim 3:16 most likely has an entirely different reason for the masculine relative pronoun—namely, because it is probably an embedded hymn fragment, there is no real antecedent. - Greek Grammar and the Personality of the Holy Spirit (2003) Basically, I am wondering what you think of the grammar. And references you might want to share. The Critical Text is the question. Putting aside hymn theory, which is not really a discussion, since it goes outside the NT to a text unknown to complete the grammar components. Hort talked of an "apparent solecism". Metzger says that the text was changed from ὃς, which he considered the authentic autographic text, "to bring the relative into concord with μυστήριον". Your thoughts? Thanks! Steven Avery Bayside, NY Statistics: Posted by Steven Avery — June 15th, 2014, 9:55 am