Questions from James 4:5

David J. Rising (
Fri, 8 Nov 1996 09:36:47 -0500 (EST)

I have some questions related to James 4:5 and the phrase PROS FQONON
EPIPOQEI TO PNEUMA hO KATWKISEN EN HMIN. I do understand that this passage
has several options in interpretation so let me focus on just one or two
items, and hopefully the answer to the following questions won't rest in
solving all the difficulties of this verse, or perhaps the answer to these
questions may help answer the others.

1. What argument can be made for understanding the phrase PROS FQONON
adverbially (i.e. as FQONERWS)? A.T. Robertson indicates that PROS
functions in this fashion in this passage (as do many English translations)
and also mentions that in Homer, "PROS has an adverbial force, PROS DE, with
the notion of 'besides.'" and many grammarians have noted that prepositions
developed from original adverbs. Can it be said that the etymology of PROS
(i.e. PROS < PROTI where -TI is an adverbial suffix), and its usage in James
4:5 is the best support for an adverbial usage ("jealously")? I am aware
via BAGD that similar adverbial constructions are found in the classics
(PROS ORGHN = ORGILWS), but of the 75 NT usages of PROS with a noun, I was
not able to find any examples with which to compare. Any thoughts?

2. Can anyone give me some good reasons to take TO PNEUMA as the subject of
EPIPOQEI rather than an understood hO QEOS or vice versa. I am aware of the
highly unlikely text variant of TON QEON and the possible connection with Ps
41:2 in LXX linking PSYXH with PNEUMA (BTW, what is the source "Wettstein").
Any thoughts on this will be helpful also.

David Rising