Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Hebrews 5:5-10

5:6 The word for "order" as in "order of Mel." is taxsin, as in taxinomy, meaning classification, rank, type.

5:7 The word flesh (sarx) is used here; Hebrews in 2:14 also emphasizes Jesus fleshly nature.

5:8 The translators do get this right, it seems, but this verse could just as easily read: "save us from death through loud cries and tears." In short, the "through loud cries" could refer to how Jesus will save us instead of his prayers.

5:9 The word for source, as in source of our salvation, is "aitios," can mean more strongly the cause of.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Ephesians 2:1-10

2:1 The preposition "in" as in "you were dead in your trespasses" is not in the Greek. The words are in the dative. It could also be "to your trespasses and to your sins."

2:1/2 A technical note on the Greek. The verb tense "you were dead" is technically a present participle, yet it is translated in the past in English. Why? Because the tense of a participle is always relative to the main verb in the sentence, in this case, an aorist (and thus past tense) verb in verse 2.

2:3 The word wrath here has no article; technically, then, it should be "by a nature of a wrath." It does not indicate the wrath of God here.

2:5 In the past couple of weeks I've spoken about that great verb: Make alive (zoopoie-oo); here we have make alive together: syzoopoie-oo. We are not made alive alone, but with others!

2:5 This whole section has not had a lot of articles or prepositions; it is a stacking of nouns (see 2.1 note). For example, in 2:3, the word nature is in the dative; here the word grace has neither an article or preposition. Generally, the translators (and this seems fair) are translating all of these datives in an instrumental means (ie, by means of nature...by means of grace)...but it could also be "For grace" or "To grace" or "In Grace" we have been saved.

2:5 Saved is a perfective, passive participle (sesoozomenoi); none of the verbs relating to sin are in the perfect -- there is something temporary about the reality of sin; but salvation stands as something that still has a present impact.

2:6 We have to more "syn" verbs here: (raised with and seated with). The Greek, in otherwords, attaches the prefix syn to those verbs, just as Paul did with "make alive with."

2:7 The word "coming" does not necessarily have a future connotation; it can simply mean "the ages which are coming as in right now and continuing to come."

2:10 When it says that we are a work of God, the literal word here is "poiehma" or poem. We are the poetic act of God, created for good works!

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

1 Cor 1:18-25

1.18 The word for "the Word of the cross" is literally "ho logos." The logos of the cross; the matter, the word, the thing of the cross.

1.18 Both of the key verbs in the sentence (save; perish) are in the passive present. In other words, the act of being saved (sooz-oo) or perishing (apollu-mi; as in "lose one's life from last week) is a constant process being done to us.

1.21 The word here for "pleased" is eudoke-oo, which is the word that God uses in to talk describe Jesus, "the one in whom I am well pleased."

1.21 Paul does not talk about the Holy Spirit directly in these verses, however, Paul speaks about "kerygamatos" (proclamation) and "keryss-oo" (preaching) The kergyma is effective Paul points out, because of the Spirit (1 Cor 2.4); also, faith comes about through the proclamation (15.11; Romans 10:14-15) and faith finally comes from the Holy Spirit (1 Cor 12:3). So for Paul, the Spirit is not absent in his words about how the cross becomes effective for us.

1.23 The word for crucified here is in the perfect tense, a reminder that even though Jesus is resurrected, crucifixion is a lasting reality.

1.23 The word for "scandal" is "skandalon" which can mean stumbling block.

1.24 The expression "Christ is the power of God and the wisdom of God" is slightly off in that there is no "the" in the greek. Thus, Christ is a power of God and a wisdom of God, technically...

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Romans 4:13-25

4.13 No major translation picks up on the fact that it is "to Abraham OR his descendants." That or (not kai but eh) is really puzzling to me.

4.13 This is not a Greek insight, but reading the text in Greek, this caught my eye. The promise is spelled out here in bold terms, not simply in terms of resurrection, or even forgiveness, but the world (kosmos).

4.14 The word "nullify" (katarge-oo) here Paul used a few verses ago (3:31) to say that we do not nullify the law. (This is NOT the word Jesus uses to talk about abolishing the law)

4.15 The law however katerge-oo (one vowel difference) wrath; ie, it accomplishes this.

4.17 The word here for nations is "Ehtnos," which is normally translated in the plural (as it is here) as "gentiles." God made Abraham a father to many Gentiles is how the audience would have heard this!

4.17 Here is the word from the previous week: "Zooopoie-oo" (Make alive!) Once again, God is the subject of the verb.

4.20 The word here relating to the "strengthening" of faith is "endynamo-oo" This is a great reminder that even as Paul is talking about life and death, there is a way in which faith empowers us. In short, faith doesn't simply make us alive but lets us live.

4.24 The object of faith is not forgiveness, but the resurrection; this points toward that great insight of Gerhard Forde, that beneath forgiveness is life and death.

4.25 The word here for betray (paradidoo-mi) is the same on as in the Gospel of Mark for this weak.