Koine and Biblical and Medieval Greek • Revelation 13:15 – ποιήσῃ = make/force?

In Revelation 13:15
English (LSB) - And it was given to him to give breath to the image of the beast, so that the image of the beast would even speak and cause as many as do not worship the image of the beast to be killed.
Greek - καὶ ἐδόθη αὐτῷ δοῦναι πνεῦμα τῇ εἰκόνι τοῦ θηρίου ἵνα καὶ λαλήσῃ ἡ εἰκὼν τοῦ θηρίου καὶ ποιήσῃ ὅσοι ἂν μὴ προσκυνήσωσιν τὴν εἰκόνα τοῦ θηρίου ἵνα ἀποκτανθῶσιν

I asked a pastor for some perspective on this and he referred me to Robert Thomas’ exegetical commentary. I was horrified with his eschatology as the basis for translating the text in the way he did. Having said that, I confess my own eschatology has caused me to look more deeper at this passage and question the translation.

In this context, the Image Beast that we make (Revelation 13:14) is given the breath to speak. in Revelation 19, the Image Beast is called the "False prophet". The Image Beast appears to have no ability to make/force/cause (various translations) and only appears to be a persuasive tool.

My contention is that while ποιήσῃ can be translated as "make" as a generic verb, in the context of speech, it's not best verb to describe the action. For example, in other passages (John 5:18; John 8:53; John 10:33; John 19:7, 12; 1 John 1:10; 1 John 5:10) it's translated as "make yourself [out to be]" are all euphemisms in English to make a claim, or make a declaration. Elsewhere (Matthew 12:16[tell about]; Luke 5:33[said]; Acts 5:34[said]; 8:2[cried]; 23:12-13[conspired]) it is often translated with a speaking verb, but not always.

I don't think the "make" verbs in "make yourself [out to be]" and "make a cake" can be considered equivalent forms of "make".

If a speaking verb could be substituted, as it is in other passages, shouldn't this be preferred when the beast appears only to have been given the ability to speak, and appears to have no temporal authority to make/force/cause. I'm not saying that translating ποιήσῃ as "cause" or "make" is outside of reasonable of translation options but that is vastly different from understanding that as 'forcing'. I simply argue that if the Image Beast has the ability to speak and nothing more, it should ποιήσῃ be better understood with some speaking verb as it is elsewhere in Scripture, rather than relying on euphamisms.


Statistics: Posted by CuriousCat — Wed Jan 10, 2024 2:47 pm

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