1 Peter 1:1-2

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rhutchin
Posts: 25
Joined: September 6th, 2011, 9:25 am

1 Peter 1:1-2

Post by rhutchin » September 6th, 2011, 10:11 am

The text reads:

PETROS...EKLEKTOIS PAREPIDHMOIS DIASPOPAS...KAI BIQUNIAS KATA PROGNWSIN QEOU PATROS EN hAGIASMOi PNEUMATOS EIS hUPAKOHN KAI RANTISMON AIMATOS IHSOU CRISTOU...

The translations differ somewhat. Is this a particularly difficult passage to translate?

1. Should we read this as Peter writing to the elect (EKLEKTOIS) as NIV reads but other translations do not?

2. Should we read PAREPIDHMOIS DIASPOPAS...KAI BIQUNIAS as an adjective phrase modifying and describing EKLEKTOIS as NIV also reads but other translations do not?

3. Must KATA PROGNWSIN QEOU PATROS modify EKLEKTOIS as in all the translations I read?

My speculation and main issue:
4. Could KATA PROGNWSIN QEOU PATROS modify EN hAGIASMOi PNEUMATOS?

This would give a translation like this, "Peter, to the elect in/through sanctification of the spirit according to the foreknowledge of God to obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Christ." Given the context, it appears to me that Peter may not be emphasizing that they are elect according to the foreknowledge of God but that the difficulties they are experiencing are according to the foreknowledge of God.

How much liberty can a translator take with this verse?
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Roger Hutchinson

rhutchin
Posts: 25
Joined: September 6th, 2011, 9:25 am

Re: 1 Peter 1:1-2

Post by rhutchin » September 13th, 2011, 10:20 am

I found an article that addresses the basic issue I raised. It is at:

Bibliotheca Sacra vol 137 Jan-Mar 1980
Designation of the Readers in 1 Peter 1:1–2
D. Edmond Hiebert

From the article:

Peter may here have intended [ἐκλεκτοῖς] as a noun, but the grammatical structure does not suggest it. It is more natural to accept παρεπιδήμοις (“sojourners”) as the governing noun of the expression, modified by an adjective preceding it and another noun, in the genitive, following it. This is in keeping with Peter’s use of ἐκλεκτος as an adjective in 2:6,9 {1 Pet 2}, although in both of these instances the adjective follows the noun. Support for the view that it is a separate noun is doctrinal, based on the three prepositional phrases in verse 2 {1 Pet 1:2}

This writer accepts it as preferable to regard ἐκλεκτοῖς as an adjective and to render the phrase, “to such as are elect sojourners of the Dispersion.....

The designation “elect sojourners of the Dispersion” also indicates Peter’s keen awareness of their difficult earthly status....[the] three phrases {1 Pet 1:2} modify all of verse 1 {1 Pet 1:1}, applying to both writer and readers. Obviously they are applicable to both Peter and his readers as fellow believers. But it is much more natural to take these phrases as a part of the entire dative construction identifying the readers. Since these three phrases in verse 2 {1 Pet 1:2} stress the divine action in the lives of the readers, they do have a close relation to their status as God’s elect. But they do not merely give a closer definition of their election, instead they relate to their total position as “elect sojourners of the Dispersion.” “It is because they are ‘chosen’ by God that they are now exiles of the dispersion in the world.”[footnoted citation]

The words “according to the foreknowledge of God the Father” correlate their status as “elect sojourners of the Dispersion” with God’s foreknowledge. “According to” (κατὰ and the accusative) indicates a standard or norm; their present circumstances as elect sojourners are in full accord with the divine “foreknowledge” (πρόγνωσιν).

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I take this author to say that κατὰ πρόγνωσιν θεοῦ refers to their current circumstances and difficulties and the reader should not be reading this as if Peter were making a point about their salvation which is not an issue at hand. However, the author says that this is his opinion. So, how good is the author's opinion?
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Roger Hutchinson

Barry Hofstetter
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Joined: May 6th, 2011, 1:48 pm

Re: 1 Peter 1:1-2

Post by Barry Hofstetter » September 14th, 2011, 9:37 pm

rhutchin wrote:I found an article that addresses the basic issue I raised. It is at:

Bibliotheca Sacra vol 137 Jan-Mar 1980
Designation of the Readers in 1 Peter 1:1–2
D. Edmond Hiebert

From the article:

Peter may here have intended [ἐκλεκτοῖς] as a noun, but the grammatical structure does not suggest it. It is more natural to accept παρεπιδήμοις (“sojourners”) as the governing noun of the expression, modified by an adjective preceding it and another noun, in the genitive, following it. This is in keeping with Peter’s use of ἐκλεκτος as an adjective in 2:6,9 {1 Pet 2}, although in both of these instances the adjective follows the noun. Support for the view that it is a separate noun is doctrinal, based on the three prepositional phrases in verse 2 {1 Pet 1:2}

This writer accepts it as preferable to regard ἐκλεκτοῖς as an adjective and to render the phrase, “to such as are elect sojourners of the Dispersion.....

The designation “elect sojourners of the Dispersion” also indicates Peter’s keen awareness of their difficult earthly status....[the] three phrases {1 Pet 1:2} modify all of verse 1 {1 Pet 1:1}, applying to both writer and readers. Obviously they are applicable to both Peter and his readers as fellow believers. But it is much more natural to take these phrases as a part of the entire dative construction identifying the readers. Since these three phrases in verse 2 {1 Pet 1:2} stress the divine action in the lives of the readers, they do have a close relation to their status as God’s elect. But they do not merely give a closer definition of their election, instead they relate to their total position as “elect sojourners of the Dispersion.” “It is because they are ‘chosen’ by God that they are now exiles of the dispersion in the world.”[footnoted citation]

The words “according to the foreknowledge of God the Father” correlate their status as “elect sojourners of the Dispersion” with God’s foreknowledge. “According to” (κατὰ and the accusative) indicates a standard or norm; their present circumstances as elect sojourners are in full accord with the divine “foreknowledge” (πρόγνωσιν).

------

I take this author to say that κατὰ πρόγνωσιν θεοῦ refers to their current circumstances and difficulties and the reader should not be reading this as if Peter were making a point about their salvation which is not an issue at hand. However, the author says that this is his opinion. So, how good is the author's opinion?
First, the text:

Πέτρος ἀπόστολος Ἰησοῦ Χριστοῦ ἐκλεκτοῖς παρεπιδήμοις διασπορᾶς Πόντου, Γαλατίας, Καππαδοκίας, Ἀσίας, καὶ Βιθυνίας, 2 κατὰ πρόγνωσιν θεοῦ πατρός, ἐν ἁγιασμῷ πνεύματος, εἰς ὑπακοὴν καὶ ῥαντισμὸν αἵματος Ἰησοῦ Χριστοῦ· χάρις ὑμῖν καὶ εἰρήνη πληθυνθείη.

I take the writer of the article to be saying that they are elect sojourners because of their salvation. I would say that κατά indicates the basis or foundation of their status, ἐν indicates the instrumental means of attaining that status, and εἰς shows the purpose to which that status is directed.
My speculation and main issue:
4. Could KATA PROGNWSIN QEOU PATROS modify EN hAGIASMOi PNEUMATOS?
No, because the three prepositional phrases appear to be acting in parallel, and I for one can't make sense of your suggestion. How would you explain it if it did so modify?
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N.E. Barry Hofstetter
Instructor of Latin
Jack M. Barrack Hebrew Academy
Χαίρετε ἐν κυρίῳ πάντοτε· πάλιν ἐρῶ, χαίρετε

rhutchin
Posts: 25
Joined: September 6th, 2011, 9:25 am

Re: 1 Peter 1:1-2

Post by rhutchin » September 18th, 2011, 6:57 pm

The issue, to me, is the way in which ἐκλεκτοῖς παρεπιδήμοις διασπορᾶς is to be read. I understand this can be, reading between the lines: ...to the elect specifically those who are now find themselves to be aliens having been scattered amongst foreign cities.

You say that they are elect sojourners because of their salvation. Could I read it that they are a subset of the elect with the focus being on their status as sojourners and this because of their having been scattered? Peter is writing to the elect (as opposed to the non-elect who might also read his letter) but the state of these particular elect is that they are aliens (strangers in cities to which they have traveled to escape the persecution at home (or perhaps, metaphorically, as strangers from their home in heaven)). I take the Hiebert article to be supporting this position.

Thus, κατὰ πρόγνωσιν θεοῦ πατρός, ἐν ἁγιασμῷ πνεύματος, εἰς ὑπακοὴν καὶ ῥαντισμὸν αἵματος Ἰησοῦ Χριστοῦ could identify with παρεπιδήμοις and not necessarily ἐκλεκτοῖς. Is it possible that Peter is saying that they are strangers according to the foreknowledge of God and not necessarily elect for this reason (even if that would be true)?

As to κατὰ πρόγνωσιν θεοῦ πατρός modifying ἐν ἁγιασμῷ πνεύματος, my thinking is that the order of the phrases can be based on the emphasis that Peter makes. They are strangers as a consequence of their sanctification with this sanctification being unto obedience which increases their alienation from the world. This is the basis for all the problems that they are encountering (the trial of their faith Peter notes in v 7). Peter, to encourage them, emphasizes that their status as aliens and the problems they are encountering because of their faith is according to the foreknowledge of God.

I take all this to be an exegetical position as Hiebert notes of his position.

So, does a grammatical analysis sort all this out and point the reader in one and only one direction?

Roger Hutchinson
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Roger Hutchinson

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