Revelation 14:6 (The Everlasting Gospel)
Mon, 25 Nov 1996 01:35:20 -0500
I am only in my first semester of koine greek and need some help from
the learned. My question concerns Revelation 14:6 which is translated in
the KJV as follows:
"And I saw another angel fly in the midst of heaven, having THE
EVERLASTING GOSPEL to preach unto them that dwell on the earth, and to every
nation, and kindred, and tongue, and people, " etc. (emphasis added)
The Greek text is as follows: (I hope I have the transliteration
KAI EIDON ALLON AGGELON PETOMENON EN MESOURANHMATI EXONTA EUAGGELION
AIWNION EUAGGELISAI EPI TOUS KAQHMENOUS EPI THS GHS KAI EPI PAN EQNOS KAI
FULHN KAI GLWSSAN KAI LAON,
Since there is no article before EUAGGELION, why is this translated as
THE everlasting gospel? It seems that a more valid translation might be "an
everlasting gospel" or "everlasting good news" or perhaps even "eternal good
news" without using the article.
Some other translations that translate the phrase using an article
are as follows:
(NIV) Then I saw another angel, flying in midair, and he had THE
eternal gospel to proclaim to those who live on the earth-to every nation,
tribe, language and people.
(JER) Then I saw another angel, flying high overhead, sent to announce
THE Good News of eternity to all who live on the earth, every nation, race,
language and tribe. (emphasis added)
The NRSV translates the phrase without the definite article:
(NRSV) Then I saw another angel flying in midheaven, with an eternal
gospel to proclaim to those who live on earth-to every nation and tribe and
language and people.
Any help you can provide in sorting this out would be helpful. It seems
to me that the translators may be translating the phrase as "the everlasting
gospel" for theological reasons to remain consistent with the idea that the
gospel of salvation must be preached to all the world (Matthew 28:19 & Mark
16:15) but I am only speculating. The message of the angel in Rev. 14:6
appears quite different, however, as it refers to the coming hour of the
judgement of God not the gospel of salvation.
Is the EUAGGELION a unique noun that is treated as a proper noun and the
article therefore omitted? I am obviously in over my head. Thanks in
advance for any help you can provide.