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Featured The Gospel of John Claims that Jesus is God

Discussion in 'Biblical Debates' started by 74x12, Aug 5, 2018.

  1. Clear

    Clear Well-Known Member
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    A) Hi Tigger2

    1) GRAMMATICAL RULES VERSUS TRANSLATOR BIAS
    I very much agree with you that a translator will use their own personal context which affects their translation. This is a point @Oeste makes, (though it works against the trinitarian theology as much as it does for it). An anarthrous word "God" (indefinite) becomes "THE" God (definite) due to translator bias or assumed context. We ALL translate and interpret according to our own inherent biases. Translators point out the many unusual changes to the New World Translation as examples of unusual and inappropriate changes to text based on Franzs' bias (the main "translator").

    Your examples in post #436 are wonderful examples of how different translators are affected by their own bias. This sort of contextual contamination and educated "guessing" as to how to translate a phrase is a DIFFERENT principle than the rules of grammar. While there ARE rules of grammar which say if the definite article is present, then the noun it references IS definite and grammatically, if the article is absent, then it is indefinite. But, this is a basic rule and CONTEXT overrides the rule. The author of early texts (the bible included) sometimes uses poor greek or improper grammar and then one is left to context to make their best guess as to what an author is trying to say. Sometimes actually, quite frequently, the translator has specific bias which determines their choice of words. The exceptions to the rules of grammar is that Context ALWAYS over rules grammar. The difficulty then, is knowing the correct historical context (i.e. what the author was trying to say).

    This was my point I was trying to make to 24X12. The grammatical use of John 1:1, third phrase is perfectly correctly translated "and the Word was a God". The difficulty is that IF the historical context of the writer was such that HE assumed a definite article, (but simply failed to use it), then the translation "a God" is incorrect. It is NOT the grammar, nor rules of grammar that is going to determine the correct translation of this specific phrase, but instead, it will have to be the context of the ancient writer which determines correct translation. The problem then becomes one of correctly determining what the writer of John 1:1 actually meant. Grammatical rules will NOT tell us this, only historical context.

    In any case, than you for your examples of "best guesses" by translators.

    Good luck to you and I hope your spiritual journey in this life is pleasant.

    Clear



    B) Hi 24X12

    1) 24X12 said : "As for arguing Greek grammar all am I saying is that you people want to take over this thread with your supposed Greek rules that don't even exist."

    My very specific claim has been that Koine Greek has a definite article and that Greek grammar has rules that define the proper use of the article and that Tigger2 has used this grammatical rule correctly.

    Are you now claiming this is a rule of Greek grammar that “doesn’t even exist.”?

    IF you, who do NOT read Greek, are now claiming that such rules of Greek grammar regarding the definite article in Greek "don’t exist", how do you expect to discuss the meaning of Greek with individuals who CAN read Greek and who do believe in grammatical rules as to how proper Greek is to be used?

    Why would educated individuals want to pay attention to your opinion if your opinion is not based on reason, or logic or factual data?

    How will you attempt to create credibility for your claims if they are not based on reason, or logic or factual data?


    2) 24X12 said : So I will debate that. And I don't need to know Greek in order to do so.

    Debating Greek without knowing Greek?

    Well, ......good luck with that.


    3) 24X12 said : I was only saying that an ENGLISH WORD is not in GREEK because it is ENGLISH not GREEK.

    "English is not Greek".....O.K., good point.




    In any case, I hope your spiritual journey is full of enjoyable insights and you are able to do the kind of good in the world that I think you would like to do.

    Clear

    σιτζσιδρω
     
    #441 Clear, Jul 1, 2019
    Last edited: Jul 1, 2019
  2. tigger2

    tigger2 Member

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    There are 50 uses of “theos” by John (17 in the Gospel of John). Here is the list of every “theos” (nominative case) used by John. If it has the definite article, “art.” has been written after the verse number. If it does not have the definite article, “an.” (for “anarthrous”) has been written before the verse number. If it appears to be applied to Jesus, “Jesus” has been written after the verse number.

    an. John 1:1c - - - Jesus

    an. Jn 1:18 - - - Jesus

    Jn 3:2 art.

    Jn 3:16 art.

    Jn 3:17 art.

    Jn 3:33 art.

    Jn 3:34 art.

    Jn 4:24 art.

    Jn 6:27 art.

    Jn 8:42 art.

    an. Jn 8:54 - - -“God of you”

    Jn 9:29 art.

    Jn 9:31 art.

    Jn 11:22 art.

    Jn 13:31 art.

    Jn 13:32 art.

    Jn 20:28 art. Jesus (?) “God of me” (See MYGOD study)

    1 John 1:5 art.

    1 Jn 3:20 art.

    1 Jn 4:8 art.

    1 Jn 4:9 art.

    1 Jn 4:11 art.

    1 Jn 4:12 art.

    1 Jn 4:15 art.

    1 Jn 4:16 art. (3 occurrences)

    1 Jn 5:10 art.

    1 Jn 5:11 art.

    1 Jn 5:20 art.

    Revelation

    Rev. 1:1 art.

    Rev. 1:8 art.

    Rev. 4:8 art.

    Rev. 4:11 art. “the God of us”

    Rev. 7:17 art.

    Rev. 11:17 art.

    Rev. 15:3 art.

    Rev. 16:7 art.

    Rev. 17:17 art.

    Rev. 18:5 art.

    Rev. 18:8 art.

    Rev. 18:20 art.

    Rev. 19:6 art. “the God of us”

    Rev. 21:3 art.

    an. Rev. 21:7 ---- “God to him”

    Rev. 21:22 art.

    Rev. 22:5 art.

    Rev. 22:6 art. “the God of the spirits”

    Rev. 22:18 art.

    Rev. 22:19 art.

    We can see that out of at least 47 uses of “theos” for the only true God (all those apparently not applied to Jesus), 45 of them have the definite article.

    We can also see that of the 3 uses of “theos” that appear to be applied to Jesus (obviously Jn 1:1c and Jn 1:18 are applied to him; Jn 20:28 is not so certain - see study of John 20:28 - MY GOD), two of them (Jn 1:1c and 1:18) do not have the article. But if the article before “theos” indicates that the only true God is being spoken of, and if the absence of the article before “theos” indicates “god” or “a god” is being spoken of, how do we explain John 8:54 (absence of article even though applied to God), John 20:28 (article present even though, possibly, applied to Jesus), and Rev. 21:7 (article absent even though applied to God)?

    Again we need to examine these “exceptions” as we also find in Matthew, Mark, and Luke. Remember that nouns in the nominative case, if they are used in a possessive (or any prepositional) construction (such as “God of me,” “God to him,” etc.—meaning “my God,” “his God,” etc.), may or may not use the article with little or no effect on the actual meaning.

    Of all the 50 uses of “theos” (in the nominative case) by John can you guess which ones are with prepositional constructions? That’s right! John 8:54 says literally: “you are saying that God of you is.” John 20:28 says literally: “the Lord of me and the God [or ‘god’] of me.” Revelation 21:7 says literally: “I shall be to him God and he will be to me son.”

    That the last scripture (Rev. 21:7) should be considered in the same way as “of him” (i.e., the use of the article is basically without meaning in this case) is shown not only by its “possessive” meaning (“his God” and “my son” - see most Bibles) but by the actual usage in this very scripture. (Remember, too, that in reality it is nouns with prepositional constructions that have the article ambiguity, and we have a prepositional construction here: “God to him.”)

    There are only 3 other places in John’s writings where “theos” is part of a prepositional construction: Rev. 4:11, Rev. 19:6, and Rev. 22:6. These, however, do take the definite article. So sometimes John uses the article with a prepositional construction and sometimes he doesn’t. Which is exactly what we would expect when the use of the article is purely arbitrary in such circumstances!

    So we find that if we exclude all the 'prepositional' constructions (only 6 for “theos” in all of John’s writings) as we should, then all of the remaining 44 instances of “theos” follow the rule (“theos” with article = “God,” and “theos” without article = “god” or “a god”).

    Yes, there is a total of 117 places in ALL of the writings of the 4 Gospel writers where the nominative “theos” in non-prepositional form is applied to the only true God. Every one of them has the definite article! The only 2 places in all of these inspired scriptures where “theos” in non-prepositional phrases is clearly not applied to the only true God (John 1:1c and John 1:18) also just “happens” to be the only 2 places that do not have the definite article! So, in all 119 of the non-prepositional uses of “theos” by the Gospel writers the presence of the definite article always determines the only true God!
     
  3. Clear

    Clear Well-Known Member
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    Hi @tigger2

    I can't tell, but you might be "preaching to the choir" in this instance (if you are writing for my benefit on this specific point). For example, I do agree that nouns with prepositional constructs have ambiguity, but I would have agreed if you had said this same ambiguity applied to other examples as well.

    I have not been following your debate with other posters and I only started making comments since I saw attempts to blatantly mis-use and re-define the article by someone who did not know Greek and was (I assume), simply trying to support a doctrinal position. I assume you are making grammatical points to support a specific doctrinal position. Suppose I assume your statistics are correct, can you explain exactly what it is that you are trying to demonstrate by these examples?

    While I don't care (yet) to examine these verses and will assume they are correct, I can think of exceptions in other scriptures that come to mind. For example in King 16:31, the hebrew uses the article in describing "The Baal" (הבעל) (who was NOT the "true God"), while the LXX in greek uses τω βααλ. I make the point in hebrew as well since hebrew has no indefinite article and is similar to greek in this specific point.

    My motive in making this point NOT to undermine your premise. I think your premise, so far, is based on good data, I just wanted to point out that there may be exceptions to this pattern that I can think of and, I suppose the New Testament may have exceptions (I really haven't looked). For now, lets assume your data is perfectly correct, what are you trying to demonstrate?

    By the way, THANK you for remaining tethered to objective data. It makes discussion so much easier. I also forgot to say I will be out of reach tomorrow and it may take a day or two for me to respond.

    Clear
    σιειεισιω
     
    #443 Clear, Jul 1, 2019
    Last edited: Jul 2, 2019
  4. Clear

    Clear Well-Known Member
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    I forgot to make a disclaimer in my last post. You claimed "... the use of the article is purely arbitrary in such circumstances!". (Tigger2 in post #442)

    I have to disagree with this specific claim.

    As a grammatical rule, I do not believe the use of the article is "purely arbitrary". The grammatical rule IS a grammatical rule. However, as I have mentioned, Context over rides the proper use of the article but, so does sloppy writing, textual glosses, forgetfulness, unfamiliarity with a second language, pressure for time, degree of complication of description, miss-spellings, misunderstanding of rules of grammar in a second language, etc. There are MANY reasons why absolutely proper writing and proper transmission of writing does not occur, especially in ancient texts.

    I just wanted to make this specific point so you would understand our areas of agreement and disagreement. The use of the article is NOT "purely arbitrary", but it is more complicated than this.

    In any case, I hope your journey is good and you are able to accurately describe what point you are trying to make with the data regarding the use and miss-use of the greek article.

    Clear
    σιειακφιω
     
    #444 Clear, Jul 2, 2019
    Last edited: Jul 3, 2019
  5. 74x12

    74x12 Well-Known Member

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    As stated, I don't need to read Greek in order to simply point to the many translations --by competent Greek experts-- that disagree with the NWT or with you if it comes to that.

    I don't know how to make myself any clearer. My argument was never that it could not be grammatically translated as "a god". My argument was always that it did not necessarily have to be translated as "a god". So you have misrepresented my point over and over. But people only need to check my post that you keep misrepresenting to see how clearly wrong your misguided misrepresentations have been.
     
  6. tigger2

    tigger2 Member

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    Clear #443:

    Hi @tigger2

    'I can't tell, but you might be "preaching to the choir" in this instance (if you are writing for my benefit on this specific point). For example, I do agree that nouns with prepositional constructs have ambiguity, but I would have agreed if you had said this same ambiguity applied to other examples as well.'

    [Yes there are a number of other ambiguous examples: personal names, nouns modified by numerals (Robertson indicated that adjectives can cause ambiguity for theos, p. 795), abstract nouns, etc. But I have found that trinitarian apologists (Colwell, Harner, Wallace, et al.) have most often used the 'prepositional'/possessive exceptions to 'prove' their take on John 1:1c. Isn't it strange that John 1:1c has traditionally been rendered as 'the Word was God,' but, even so, Colwell in 1933 felt compelled to try to prove that rendering with his 'Colwell's Rule'? And later trinitarian scholars tried to do the same thing by replacing Colwell's Rule with the 'Qualitative' Rule.]

    'I have not been following your debate with other posters and I only started making comments since I saw attempts to blatantly mis-use and re-define the article by someone who did not know Greek and was (I assume), simply trying to support a doctrinal position. I assume you are making grammatical points to support a specific doctrinal position. Suppose I assume your statistics are correct, can you explain exactly what it is that you are trying to demonstrate by these examples?'

    [I have examined all the uses (minus exceptions) of theos by John (and the other Gospel writers as well) to begin an examination of the traditional translation of John 1:1c. It shows that the writer of the 4th Gospel always used the article when speaking of God. The follow-up, then, is to examine all the uses of the parallel constructions to John 1:1c as used by John. That is because of the 'rules' that trinitarian scholars have invented since 1933 (Colwell) which simply depend on the word order of John 1:1c.

    Unless I overlooked some, these 18 parallel constructions I have found (minus the exception examples) all have an indefinite p.n. and are translated with the indefinite article in English. This should help show the uncertainty of the traditional translation of John 1:1c.]

    'While I don't care (yet) to examine these verses and will assume they are correct, I can think of exceptions in other scriptures that come to mind. For example in King 16:31, the hebrew uses the article in describing "The Baal" (הבעל) (who was NOT the "true God"), while the LXX in greek uses τω βααλ. I make the point in hebrew as well since hebrew has no indefinite article and is similar to greek in this specific point.

    'My motive in making this point NOT to undermine your premise. I think your premise, so far, is based on good data, I just wanted to point out that there may be exceptions to this pattern that I can think of and, I suppose the New Testament may have exceptions (I really haven't looked). For now, lets assume your data is perfectly correct, what are you trying to demonstrate?'

    [See above]
     
  7. tigger2

    tigger2 Member

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    Here, then, are all the proper examples (truly comparable to Jn 1:1c) from the writings of John (W&H text) for an honest examination of “Colwell’s Rule” (or any related rules, including Harner’s “qualitative” rule, concerning the simple, unmodified anarthrous predicate noun coming before the verb):


    H,W 1. John 4:19 - (“a prophet”) - all Bible translations

    H,W 2. John 8:48 - (“a Samaritan”) - all translations

    H,W 3. John 18:37 (a) - (“a king”) - all

    [H,W 4. John 18:37 (b) - (“a king”) - from the Received Text (TR) and the 1991 Byzantine text]

    H: Also found in Harner’s list of “Colwell Constructions”

    W: Also found in Wallace’s list of “Colwell Constructions”

    These are all indefinite nouns. All modern trinitarian Bible translations I have examined render them as indefinite!

    If we wish to supply more examples, we must include some which are less perfect than these three (or four). The best we can do is to include all those constructions (W&H text) which comply with the other qualifications above but which, unlike Jn 1:1c, have the subject before the verb also. Since trinitarian scholars themselves include such examples, they should not object if we also include all such examples.

    When we add those constructions to our list, we have:

    H 1. John 4:9 (a) - indefinite (“a Jew”) - all translations


    H,W 2. John 4:19 - indefinite (“a prophet”) - all

    H,W 3. John 6:70 - indefinite (“a devil”/“a slanderer”) - all


    H,W
    4. John 8:44 - indefinite (“a murderer”/“a manslayer”) - all


    H,W 5. John 8:48 - indefinite (“a Samaritan”) - all

    H,W 6. John 9:24 - indefinite (“a sinner”) - all

    H,W 7. John 10:1 - indefinite (“a thief and a plunderer”) - all


    H,W 8. John 10:33 - indefinite (“a man”) - all

    H,W 9. John 18:35 - indefinite (“a Jew”) - all

    H,W 10. John 18:37 (a) - indefinite (“a king”) - all

    [H,W 11. John 18:37 (b) - indefinite (“a king”) - in Received Text and in 1991 Byzantine Text]

    These are all indefinite count nouns (not definite, not “qualitative”). All trinitarian Bible translations I have examined render them as indefinite! We should have enough examples to satisfy the most critical (but honest) scholar now. (And I wouldn’t strongly resist the use of the “no subject” examples above which clearly intend the subject as being a pronoun included with the verb, e.g., “[he] is” (John 9:8, 17), which would then bring our total of proper examples to 18.)

    In that case we would have:

    H 1. John 4:9 (a) - indefinite (“a Jew”) - all translations

    H,W 2. John 4:19 - indefinite (“a prophet”) - all

    H,W 3. John 6:70 - indefinite (“a devil”/“a slanderer”) - all


    H,W
    4. John 8:44 - indefinite (“a murderer”/“a manslayer”) - all


    H,W 5. John 8:48 - indefinite (“a Samaritan”) - all

    H,W 6. John 9:24 - indefinite (“a sinner”) - all

    H,W 7. John 10:1 - indefinite (“a thief and a plunderer”) - all


    H,W 8. John 10:33 - indefinite (“a man”) - all

    H,W 9. John 18:35 - indefinite (“a Jew”) - all

    H,W 10. John 18:37 (a) - indefinite (“a king”) - all

    [H,W 11. John 18:37 (b) - indefinite (“a king”) - in Received Text and in 1991 Byzantine Text]

    ………………………………................................

    H,W 12. Jn 8:44 (b) - liar (he) is.

    H,W 13. Jn 9:8 (a) - beggar (he) was.

    H,W 14. Jn 9:17 - prophet (he) is. (compare Jn 1:21)

    H,W 15. Jn 9:25 - sinner (he) is.

    H,W 16. Jn 10:13 - hireling (he) is.

    H,W 17. Jn 12:6 - thief (he) was.

    18. 1 Jn 4:20 - liar (he) is.


    So when all the proper (those most closely equivalent to the actual usage found at John 1:1c) examples found in John’s writings are examined in various trinitarian Bibles (KJV, NASB, RSV, NIV, etc.), we find they are always translated with indefinite count nouns such as “you are a prophet” (Jn 4:19) which perfectly corresponds with a rendering of John 1:1c as “The Word was a god”!

    I forgot to add that I have found that when the anarthrous 'prepositional' p.n. is before its verb (which is the construction most-used by those attempting to prove the traditional translation of John 1:1c), it is nearly always translated with the definite article. This, then, is the most frequent 'proof' for these scholars for obvious reasons. But the constructions more parallel to John 1:1c, instead, translate using the indefinite article.
     
    #447 tigger2, Jul 3, 2019
    Last edited: Jul 3, 2019
  8. Clear

    Clear Well-Known Member
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    Hi @tigger2

    Well, THAT really seems to have represented a lot of work for you and I can appreciate the diligence that went into the search. What is the base english version you are gathering information from?
    Would it save you time and energy if I said that I do NOT view Colwells rule as a legitimate rule? Instead I think he was motivated to come up with some reason to avoid the obvious translation of "and the Word was a God". While I could be wrong, I currently believe that Colwell was simply trying to support his own doctrinal bias.

    I believe that bias is also the reason the later translators did not use the better manuscripts for verse 18 (John 1) "θεον ουδεισ εωρακεν πωποτε μονογενησ θεοσ ο ων εισ τον κολπον του πατροσ εκεινοσ εξηγησατο" "No one has seen God at any time. The only Begotten God who is in the bosom of the Father has [declared] him."

    I think the creators of the later bibles who had access to earlier and better manuscripts kept the "only begotten son" due to doctrinal discomfort that the early and better texts would have caused. While I think the New World Translation has many translational errors, I was impressed that the NWtranslation included the more original verse 18.

    Can you explain exactly what it is that you are trying to demonstrate by these examples?

    Clear
    σιτωφυφυω
     
    #448 Clear, Jul 3, 2019
    Last edited: Jul 3, 2019
  9. tigger2

    tigger2 Member

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    Sorry, I thought it was fairly obvious that I was examining John's usage to see if the traditional translation of John 1:1c was the only probable rendering. I see "And the Word was a god" as probably the most likely intention of the writer. It is noteworthy that John is the only Gospel writer to use a lower sense of theos (John 10:33-36).

    Therefore, I certainly question those scholars and apologists who say things like , "it is neither scholarly nor reasonable to translate John 1:1 'The Word was a god.' Word-order has made obsolete and incorrect such a rendering;" "a grossly misleading translation;" "As a matter of solid fact, however, such a rendering is a frightful mistranslation;” "'the Word was a god’, a translation which is grammatically impossible"; "It is abundantly clear that a sect which can translate the New Testament like that is intellectually dishonest;” etc.


    The New International Dictionary of New Testament Theology, Zondervan, 1986, tells us:

    “The reason why judges are called ‘gods’ in Ps. 82 is that they have the office of administering God’s judgment as ‘sons of the Most High.’ In context of the Ps. the men in question have failed to do this.... On the other hand, Jesus fulfilled the role of a true judge as agod’ and ‘son of the Most High’.” - Vol. 3, p. 187.

    Some of these (mostly) trinitarian sources which admit that the Bible actually describes men who represent God (judges, Israelite kings, etc.) and God’s angels as gods include:

    1. Young’s Analytical Concordance of the Bible, “Hints and Helps...,” Eerdmans, 1978 reprint;

    2. Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance of the Bible, #430, Hebrew and Chaldee Dict., Abingdon, 1974;

    3. New Bible Dictionary, p. 1133 (angels, judges), Tyndale House Publ., 1984;

    4. Today’s Dictionary of the Bible, p. 208 (angels, judges), Bethany House Publ., 1982;

    5. Hastings’ A Dictionary of the Bible, p. 217, Vol. 2;

    6. The New Brown-Driver-Briggs-Gesenius Hebrew-English Lexicon, p. 43, Hendrickson publ.,1979;

    7. Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament, #2316 (4.), Thayer, Baker Book House, 1984 printing;

    8. The International Standard Bible Encyclopaedia, p. 132, Vol. 1; and p. 1265, Vol. 2, Eerdmans, 1984;

    9. The NIV Study Bible, footnotes for Ps. 45:6; Ps. 82:1, 6; and Jn 10:34; Zondervan, 1985;

    10. New American Bible, St. Joseph ed., footnote for Ps. 45:7; 82:1; Jn 10:34; 1970 ed.;

    11. A. T. Robertson, Word Pictures, Vol. 5, pp. 188-189;

    12. William G. T. Shedd, Dogmatic Theology, Vol. 1, pp. 317, 324, Nelson Publ., 1980 printing;

    13. Murray J. Harris, Jesus As God, p. 202, (angels, judges, kings) Baker Book House, 1992;

    14. William Barclay, The Gospel of John, V. 2, Daily Study Bible Series, pp. 77, 78, Westminster Press, 1975;

    15. The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible (John 10:34 and Ps. 82:6);

    16. The Fourfold Gospel (Note for John 10:35);

    17. Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Jamieson, Fausset, Brown (John 10:34-36);

    18. Matthew Henry Complete Commentary on the Whole Bible (Ps. 82:6-8 and John 10:35);

    19. John Wesley's Explanatory Notes on the Whole Bible (Ps. 82:1).

    20. Theological Dictionary of the New Testament ('Little Kittel'), - p. 328, Eerdmans Publishing Co., 1985.

    21. The Expositor’s Greek Testament, pp. 794-795, Vol. 1, Eerdmans Publishing Co.

    22. The Amplified Bible, Ps. 82:1, 6 and John 10:34, 35, Zondervan Publ., 1965.

    23. Barnes' Notes on the New Testament, John 10:34, 35.

    24. B. W. Johnson's People's New Testament, John 10:34-36.

    25. The New International Dictionary of New Testament Theology, Zondervan, 1986, Vol. 3, p. 187.

    26. Fairbairn’s Imperial Standard Bible Encyclopedia, p. 24, vol. III, Zondervan, 1957 reprint.

    27. Theological Dictionary, Rahner and Vorgrimler, p. 20, Herder and Herder, 1965.

    28. Pastor Jon Courson, The Gospel According to John.

    29. Vincent’s New Testament Word Studies, John 10:36.

    30. C. J. Ellicott, John 10:34, Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers.

    (Also John 10:34, 35 - CEV; TEV; GodsWord; The Message; NLT; NIRV)

    And the highly respected and highly popular Hellenic Jewish writer, Philo, had the same understanding for “God”/“a god” about the same time the NT was written.

    And the earliest Christians like the highly respected scholar Origen (see DEF note #1) and others - - including Tertullian; Justin Martyr; Hippolytus; Clement of Alexandria; Theophilus (p. 9, DEF study); the writer of “The Epistle to Diognetus”; and even super-trinitarians St. Athanasius and St. Augustine - - also had this understanding for “a god.”
     
  10. kjw47

    kjw47 Well-Known Member

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    Every one who knows God and his son, knows 100% that is what it is actually saying. Because the bible clearly teaches --The true followers would be one as well with them. Not as God, but in purpose( John 5:30--Matthew 7:21
     
  11. Clear

    Clear Well-Known Member
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    Tigger2 said : "I thought it was fairly obvious that I was examining John's usage to see if the traditional translation of John 1:1c was the only probable rendering."

    I see. I had assumed that there was a doctrinal position at stake behind the grammatical claims. Though it is obvious to Greek readers that John 1:1c can be translated with either an arthrous or anarthrous rendering, still, it is the ancient authors context that will determine what the author actually meant to say.

    As for Dr. J. Mantey, I assume he was simply trying to support his own doctrinal preferences by his comments specifically regarding John 1:1c.


    Well, I hope your spiritual journey is wonderful and good in this life @tigger2.


    Clear
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  12. Clear

    Clear Well-Known Member
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    @kjw47 :

    Hi, I REALLY don't want to enter into this debate (as I have done...), but I simply wanted to make a comment about the words echad and yachad in relation to the point you seem to be wanting to make.

    I very much like the fact that you have some historical context and knowledge concerning the Judeo-Christian use of the word that is describing how God the Father and His Son and the Holy Spirit were “one” in early Judeo-Christian tradition. Though we can’t tell from Greek whether Jesus was using אחד or יחד (“one”) still, the concept of use in describing the 12 disciples (Jn 17:11) can apply regardless.

    If Jesus, in speaking to his Father in prayer, asked for a blessing upon his disciples “… that they may be one, as we are…”. (Jn 17:11)

    If Jesus was praying in a form of Hebrew (rather than greek), then he is probably not using the numerical term “one”, but probably the conceptual term “yachad” (i.e. one in purpose and thought and heart…). This was a common religious term applied to those who are gathered upon a single principle, such as those who committed to the same religious covenant.


    In fact, when the Jewish association of Messianics in Qumran formed, they designated themselves a ‘yachad’. To avoid mis-connotations of using various possible english “semi-equivalents”, the “Wise, Abegg and Cook translators of the Dead Sea Scrolls decided not to use the word “community”, but rather they used “yachad”, which was one of the society’s most common self-designations. It is very clear that this “oneness” of a yachad is not a numerical designation, but a conceptual unity of multiple individuals.

    For example, יחד (yachad) as it describes the type of “one ness” and “unity” of the The Father and his son and the Holy Spirit is often and easily confused with the english numerical term, “one”. While “yachad” may be three individuals who are united in a single cosmic purpose (as is the early Christian “Godhead” of Father, Son, and Holy Spirit), it may refer to any number who are similar united upon a single covenant and purpose. It is a symbolism that we find in everyday useage. For example, if I buy a cluster of grapes on a single stalk at an israeli market, it can be called a "yachad". The common symbolism is that a group of things are connected to a single principle or purpose

    For examples, when CHARTER (1QSa, 1Q28a) describes the banquet–feast in the latter days associated with the arrival of the Messiah, it is a banquet held by the society of the yahad. This “one-ness” involves a number of individuals.

    In describing the PROOF TEXTS of 4Q175 one shared concept which partly created this “oneness” of faith was the societys’ expectations for the coming of the prophet who was like Moses (the greatest prophet); the royal scion of David and a high priest... They were "yachad" and "united" on this point.

    In 4Q177, describes the time "...when the men of the yachad flee...". They fled in unison and share in their exile from their land. They are even sharing a “oneness” in the experiences of exile.

    1QS, 4Q255-264a, 5Q11 Col 8 describes this unity of the partly as a shared and united acceptance of a covenant of justice; a covenant of “upholding the covenant of eternal (divine) statutes.” . It says that as this way “…is perfected among the men of the Yahad, each walking blamelessly with his fellow”, each person being “… guided by what has been revealed to them.”

    The concept of “oneness” of a “yachad” is not simply a temporary or societal term, but an eternal religious concept much like the concept of a Christian heaven where individuals are united in living eternal social principles and live together in joy and harmony for ever. Heaven is another type of “yachad”.

    That "one-ness" of multiple individuals as a "yachad" was, historically, a principle of "one ness" in heaven as well as an earthly principle is made clear in early texts. For example, in the "Priestly blessing for the last days" in 1Q28b, 1QSb Col. 4 the text says : May you abide forever as an angel of the Presence in the Holy habitation to the glory of the God of hosts. May you serve in the temple of the kingdom of God, ordering destiny with the angels of the presence, a society of the yachad with the holy ones forever, for all the ages of eternity.

    This society of individuals who have become “one” in purpose; one in heart and sentiment and even one in mind and thought as it regards this shared covenant is the concept underlying both Jesus’ prayer for his disciples and it’s great example of the ‘yachad’ which forms the Christian God-head and “unity” involving God the Father, his Son and the Holy Spirit.


    Good luck and good journey @kjw47 in forming your own models as to the relationship of God to Jesus, and to the rest of us.

    Clear
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    #452 Clear, Jul 4, 2019
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  13. kjw47

    kjw47 Well-Known Member

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    I believe Jesus--John 20:17, Rev 3:12-- as did Paul-1Cor 8:6-- That's the God taught by Israel from Moses on up until today-a single being God--YHVH(Jehovah)--Taught to Jesus his first 30 years and every single bible writer. Why?
     
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  14. tigger2

    tigger2 Member

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    In addition to Mantey I also quoted trinitarian Bruce M. Metzger and NT scholar Dr. William Barclay. And Dr. F. F. Bruce and Dr. Harry Sturz both wrote similar denunciations.

    Of course they were trying to support their own doctrinal preferences. Does that make their public condemnations true?

    Is "'a god' totally indefensible"? Or "not a ‘literal’ but an ungrammatical and tendential translation. A literal translation in English can be nothing other than: ‘the word was God.’”? Or "grammatically impossible"? Or "a frightful mistranslation”? Or "a grossly misleading translation"?
     
    #454 tigger2, Jul 5, 2019
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  15. Sandra Jayne

    Sandra Jayne Member

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  16. Sandra Jayne

    Sandra Jayne Member

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    I and my Father are one. (John 10:30)
    I pray that they will all be one, just as you and I are one—as you are in me, Father, and I am in you. And may they be in us so that the world will believe you sent me. John 17:21 Just means they are all of one mind. Married people don't really become one flesh Mark 10:8

    I believe the Hebrew word Elohim is the plural of majesty or excellence it doesn't indicate a plurality of persons within a godhead.
    Loads more scriptures that demonstrate Jesus is a person in his own right, by denying this one is denying him and his sacrifice.
     
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  17. tigger2

    tigger2 Member

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    for clear, again:

    Some trinitarian scholars are actually brave enough to admit the truth, but deny its relevance:

    Even the very trinitarian Greek expert, W. E. Vine, (although, for obvious reasons, he chooses not to accept it as the proper interpretation) admits that it is literally translated “a god was the Word”.- p. 490, An Expository Dictionary of New Testament Words, Thomas Nelson, Inc., 1983 printing.

    Equally trinitarian Professor C. H. Dodd, director of the New English Bible project, also admits this is a proper literal translation:

    “A possible translation [for John 1:1c] ... would be, ‘The Word was a god.’ As a word-for-word translation it cannot be faulted.” - Technical Papers for the Bible Translator, vol. 28, Jan. 1977.

    The reason Prof. Dodd still rejects “a god” as the actual meaning intended by John is simply because it upsets his trinitarian interpretations of John’s Gospel! - "The reason why it is inacceptable [sic.] is that it runs counter to the current of Johannine thought, and indeed of Christian thought as a whole." - Technical Papers for the Bible Translator, vol. 28, Jan. 1977.

    Trinitarian NT scholar Prof. Murray J. Harris also admits that grammatically John 1:1c may be properly translated, ‘the Word was a god,’ but his trinitarian bias makes him claim that “John’s monotheism” will not allow such an interpretation. - p. 60, Jesus as God, Baker Book House, 1992.

    And Dr. J. D. BeDuhn in his Truth in Translation states about John 1:1c:

    “ ‘And the Word was a god.’ The preponderance of evidence from Greek grammar… supports this translation.” - p. 132, University Press of America, Inc., 2003.

    Trinitarian Dr. Robert Young admits that a more literal translation of John 1:1c is “and a God (i.e. a Divine Being) was the Word” - p. 54, (‘New Covenant’ section), Young’s Concise Critical Bible Commentary, Baker Book House, 1977 printing.


    And respected trinitarian scholar, author, and Bible translator, Dr. William Barclay wrote:

    "Nowhere does the New Testament identify Jesus with God." - William Barclay: A Spiritual Autobiography, pg 50, William B Eerdmans Publishing Company, Grand Rapids, 1977. And,

    “You could translate [John 1:1c], so far as the Greek goes: ‘the Word was a God’; but it seems obvious that this is so much against the whole of the rest of the New Testament that it is wrong.” - p. 205, Ever yours, edited by C. L. Rawlins, Labarum Publ., 1985.

    You see, in ancient times many of God’s servants had no qualms about using the word “god” or “gods” for godly men, kings, judges, and even angels.
     
  18. Clear

    Clear Well-Known Member
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    Hi @tigger2

    I certainly agree that John 1:1c can be correctly translated as "And the Word was a God." I also agree with the sentiment that much of the motivation that individuals have to resist this translation has to do with doctrinal bias and has nothing to do with Koine Greek Grammar. I feel that most grammatical justifications and somewhat arbitrary "rules" of greek were almost never really the core issue, even with the experts on Greek. The issue was almost always that the translation disagreed with their theology. The issue of correct translation was almost ALWAYS going to be one of early Christian context and what the sentence would have meant to the author of this ancient text.



    Good luck and good journey Tigger2

    Clear
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    #458 Clear, Jul 10, 2019
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  19. Muffled

    Muffled Jesus in me

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    I believe saying it is a god is idolatry and blasphemy. Good luck with that.
     
  20. tigger2

    tigger2 Member

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    God and gods

    The NIV Study Bible, Zondervan, 1985 clearly recognizes the truth about the lesser meaning of theos and elohim ('a god'):

    "In the language of the OT ... rulers and judges, as deputies of the heavenly King, could be given the honorific title ‘god’ ... or be called ‘son of God’.” - footnote for Ps. 82:1.

    And, in the footnote for Ps. 45:6, this trinitarian study Bible tells us: “In this psalm, which praises the [Israelite] king ..., it is not unthinkable that he was called ‘god’ as a title of honor (cf. Isa. 9:6).”

    The New International Dictionary of New Testament Theology, Zondervan, 1986, tells us:

    “The reason why judges are called ‘gods’ in Ps. 82 is that they have the office of administering God’s judgment as ‘sons of the Most High’. In context of the Ps. the men in question have failed to do this.... On the other hand, Jesus fulfilled the role of a true judge as agod’ and ‘son of the Most High’.” - Vol. 3, p. 187.

    The New Brown-Driver-Briggs-Gesenius Hebrew-English Lexicon, 1979, Hendrickson, p. 43:

    Elohim: “a. rulers, judges, either as divine representatives at sacred places or as reflecting divine majesty and power.... b. divine ones, superhuman beings including God and angels.... c. angels Ps. 97 7 ...”

    Some of these (most, if not all, trinitarian) sources which admit that the Bible actually describes men who represent God (judges, Israelite kings, etc.) and God’s angels as gods include:

    1. Young’s Analytical Concordance of the Bible, “Hints and Helps...,” Eerdmans, 1978 reprint;

    2. Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance of the Bible, #430, Hebrew and Chaldee Dict., Abingdon, 1974;

    3. New Bible Dictionary, p. 1133 (angels, judges), Tyndale House Publ., 1984;

    4. Today’s Dictionary of the Bible, p. 208 (angels, judges), Bethany House Publ., 1982;

    5. Hastings’ A Dictionary of the Bible, p. 217, Vol. 2;

    6. The New Brown-Driver-Briggs-Gesenius Hebrew-English Lexicon, p. 43, Hendrickson publ.,1979;

    7. Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament, #2316 (4.), Thayer, Baker Book House, 1984 printing;

    8. The International Standard Bible Encyclopaedia, p. 132, Vol. 1; and p. 1265, Vol. 2, Eerdmans, 1984;

    9. The NIV Study Bible, footnotes for Ps. 45:6; Ps. 82:1, 6; and Jn 10:34; Zondervan, 1985;

    10. New American Bible, St. Joseph ed., footnote for Ps. 45:7; 82:1; Jn 10:34; 1970 ed.;

    11. A. T. Robertson, Word Pictures, Vol. 5, pp. 188-189;

    12. William G. T. Shedd, Dogmatic Theology, Vol. 1, pp. 317, 324, Nelson Publ., 1980 printing;

    13. Murray J. Harris, Jesus As God, p. 202, (angels, judges, kings) Baker Book House, 1992;

    14. William Barclay, The Gospel of John, V. 2, Daily Study Bible Series, pp. 77, 78, Westminster Press, 1975;

    15. The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible (John 10:34 and Ps. 82:6);

    16. The Fourfold Gospel (Note for John 10:35);

    17. Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Jamieson, Fausset, Brown (John 10:34-36);

    18. Matthew Henry Complete Commentary on the Whole Bible (Ps. 82:6-8 and John 10:35);

    19. John Wesley's Explanatory Notes on the Whole Bible (Ps. 82:1).

    20. Theological Dictionary of the New Testament ('Little Kittel'), - p. 328, Eerdmans Publishing Co., 1985.

    21. The Expositor’s Greek Testament, pp. 794-795, Vol. 1, Eerdmans Publishing Co.

    22. The Amplified Bible, Ps. 82:1, 6 and John 10:34, 35, Zondervan Publ., 1965.

    23. Barnes' Notes on the New Testament, John 10:34, 35.

    24. B. W. Johnson's People's New Testament, John 10:34-36.

    25. The New International Dictionary of New Testament Theology, Zondervan, 1986, Vol. 3, p. 187.

    26. Fairbairn’s Imperial Standard Bible Encyclopedia, p. 24, vol. III, Zondervan, 1957 reprint.

    27. Theological Dictionary, Rahner and Vorgrimler, p. 20, Herder and Herder, 1965.

    28. Pastor Jon Courson, The Gospel According to John.

    29. Vincent’s New Testament Word Studies, John 10:36.

    30. C. J. Ellicott, John 10:34, Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers.

    (Also John 10:34, 35 - CEV; TEV; GodsWord; The Message; NLT; NIRV)

    And, of course, the highly respected and highly popular Hellenic Jewish writer, Philo, had the same understanding for “God”/“a god” about the same time the NT was written.

    And the earliest Christians like the highly respected scholar Origen and others - - including Tertullian; Justin Martyr; Hippolytus; Clement of Alexandria; Theophilus; the writer of “The Epistle to Diognetus”; and even super-trinitarians St. Athanasius and St. Augustine - - also had this understanding for “a god.”

    Look like a lot more people than you thought are involved in "idolatry and blasphemy." Good luck with that.
     
    #460 tigger2, Jul 13, 2019
    Last edited: Jul 13, 2019
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