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Luke 22:38 Ἱκανόν ἐστιν

Posted: October 9th, 2019, 6:40 am
by Jonathan Robie
I am having doubts about an interpretation of a text that I kind of like, but don't have evidence for. Can you help keep me honest, but also provide evidence if you have it?

Here's the text:
Luke 22:36-38 wrote:Καὶ εἶπεν αὐτοῖς, Ὅτε ἀπέστειλα ὑμᾶς ἄτερ βαλλαντίου καὶ πήρας καὶ ὑποδημάτων, μή τινος ὑστερήσατε; οἱ δὲ εἶπαν, Οὐθενός. εἶπεν δὲ αὐτοῖς, Ἀλλὰ νῦν ὁ ἔχων βαλλάντιον ἀράτω, ὁμοίως καὶ πήραν, καὶ ὁ μὴ ἔχων πωλησάτω τὸ ἱμάτιον αὐτοῦ καὶ ἀγορασάτω μάχαιραν. λέγω γὰρ ὑμῖν ὅτι τοῦτο τὸ γεγραμμένον δεῖ τελεσθῆναι ἐν ἐμοί, τὸ Καὶ μετὰ ἀνόμων ἐλογίσθη· καὶ γὰρ τὸ περὶ ἐμοῦ τέλος ἔχει. οἱ δὲ εἶπαν, Κύριε, ἰδοὺ μάχαιραι ὧδε δύο. ὁ δὲ εἶπεν αὐτοῖς, Ἱκανόν ἐστιν.
I would like to know if there are Greek texts in which Ἱκανόν ἐστιν or similar phrases have the meaning outlined in the first interpretation listed in the Exegetical Summaries in the following quote - "enough of this talk!" or similar meanings. Besides the current text, of course, which is the text I am trying to establish the meaning of.
QUESTION—What did Jesus mean when he said ‘It is enough’?
  1. He meant that the subject did not need to be discussed any longer [AB, Alf, Arn, BECNT, ICC, Lns, MGC, NAC, NIBC, NIGTC, NTC, Rb, Su, TH, TNTC, WBC; CEV, HCSB, REB]. They had wrongly understood Jesus’ instructions in 22:36 and thought that Jesus intended for all of the disciples to actually go and buy swords [AB, Arn, BECNT, NAC, NIC, NIGTC, NTC, Su, TNTC]. The disciples had so missed the point of what Jesus was talking about that he refused to explain further [AB, MGC]. It was enough of that kind of talk, the disciples were hopelessly astray [TNTC, WBC]. Jesus wanted to stop the discussion about the swords [BECNT, Lns, NIGTC, TH] because of the disciples’ misunderstanding [BECNT, Lns]. He simply intended to end the matter [Lns]. His answer was curt and decisive [NTC]. He spoke in frustration [NIBC]. It could be worded ‘I give up!’ [MGC]. Or, this is a rebuke meaning ‘Enough of this kind of talk!’ [NIGTC]. Or, it is spoken in sorrow, not impatience [ICC]. Sadly Jesus indicated that the subject had been sufficiently discussed, but later on they would realize the meaning of his instructions about swords [Arn].
  2. He meant that two swords were sufficient for the group to have [BNTC, EGT, Gdt, TG]. Two swords were enough to fulfill his instructions [BNTC]. This is ironic, meaning that two swords are enough for the use they will have for any swords [Gdt]. They were enough for one who did not intend to fight [EGT]. The disciples had taken him literally and so he ironically said ‘That’s plenty!’ and ended the conversation [NIVS].

Blight, R. C. (2008). An Exegetical Summary of Luke 12–24 (2nd ed., pp. 445–446). Dallas, TX: SIL International.

Re: Luke 22:38 Ἱκανόν ἐστιν

Posted: October 9th, 2019, 8:58 am
by Barry Hofstetter
Isn't this where we tell people "Appeal to the Greek won't solve this issue?" :lol:

Until you posted this, I never realized it was a thing. I've always taken it in the second sense, that two swords are "enough" because it's not that kind of fight. He would have said the same thing if there were no swords or a thousand. But it's easy to see the former interpretation as well (and that seems to be the majority). However, I think one does not preclude the other. Jesus could easily be saying "Yeah, that's a good amount of swords" as means of ending a discussion the real meaning of which the apostles would figure out for themselves in the days following resurrection.

A quick search through the Perseus materials did not turn up ἱκανόν ἐστι(ν) as a phrase.

Re: Luke 22:38 Ἱκανόν ἐστιν

Posted: October 9th, 2019, 10:55 am
by Daniel Semler
Jonathan Robie wrote:
October 9th, 2019, 6:40 am

I would like to know if there are Greek texts in which Ἱκανόν ἐστιν or similar phrases have the meaning outlined in the first interpretation listed in the Exegetical Summaries in the following quote - "enough of this talk!" or similar meanings. Besides the current text, of course, which is the text I am trying to establish the meaning of.
Hi Jonathan,

I did a quick search in Scaife and there are about 27 hits in various texts for this phrase. I have not vetted them for sense. But here is the URL

https://scaife.perseus.org/search/?q=%2 ... tances&p=1

Thx
D

Re: Luke 22:38 Ἱκανόν ἐστιν

Posted: October 9th, 2019, 11:18 am
by Barry Hofstetter
Daniel Semler wrote:
October 9th, 2019, 10:55 am

Hi Jonathan,

I did a quick search in Scaife and there are about 27 hits in various texts for this phrase. I have not vetted them for sense. But here is the URL

https://scaife.perseus.org/search/?q=%2 ... tances&p=1

Thx
D
I just redid my search in the Perseus collection in Logos and turned up 71 hits. I don't know what I did wrong the first time. Maybe οὐχ ἱκανον τοῦ καφές...

However, more than half are false positives coming from various editions of the NT or commentaries. Of the rest, this is common:

ὅσον εἰς μέθην ἱκανόν ἐστιν... (to the extent that it is sufficient for drunkenness...). Neither in the list above nor in the one I generated did I see it used in response to a question. It's still clear what it says, only it's not clear what it means... :)

Re: Luke 22:38 Ἱκανόν ἐστιν

Posted: October 9th, 2019, 7:16 pm
by Stephen Carlson
Is the fact that Ἱκανόν is neuter helpful, i.e., that it does not mean "the two swords are enough"?

Re: Luke 22:38 Ἱκανόν ἐστιν

Posted: October 9th, 2019, 9:43 pm
by Jonathan Robie
Stephen Carlson wrote:
October 9th, 2019, 7:16 pm
Is the fact that Ἱκανόν is neuter helpful, i.e., that it does not mean "the two swords are enough"?
Good point.

Re: Luke 22:38 Ἱκανόν ἐστιν

Posted: October 12th, 2019, 12:12 pm
by Barry Hofstetter
Jonathan Robie wrote:
October 9th, 2019, 9:43 pm
Stephen Carlson wrote:
October 9th, 2019, 7:16 pm
Is the fact that Ἱκανόν is neuter helpful, i.e., that it does not mean "the two swords are enough"?
Good point.
I've been thinking about this, and I'm not so sure. It's essentially an adverbial expression, and could still be taken either way.

Re: Luke 22:38 Ἱκανόν ἐστιν

Posted: October 13th, 2019, 7:37 pm
by Stephen Carlson
Barry Hofstetter wrote:
October 12th, 2019, 12:12 pm
I've been thinking about this, and I'm not so sure. It's essentially an adverbial expression, and could still be taken either way.
I'm not sure how "adverbial" helps since the verb is ἐστιν. Perhaps you mean it applies to something more abstract, such as the situation of being armed with the sword?

Looking at the lexica, LSJ doesn't have the collocation of ἱκανόν with εἶναι, and all the other examples seem to be positive. BDAG has a few cites but does not gloss them negative. I suppose ἱκανόν ἐστιν could gloss Latin satis est, but those too appear positive from Lewis & Short. Of course, lexica don't always list every usage, but now I'd have to see actual parallels with ἱκανόν ἐστιν = Italian basta to accept option 1.

Re: Luke 22:38 Ἱκανόν ἐστιν

Posted: October 14th, 2019, 7:56 am
by Barry Hofstetter
Stephen Carlson wrote:
October 13th, 2019, 7:37 pm
Barry Hofstetter wrote:
October 12th, 2019, 12:12 pm
I've been thinking about this, and I'm not so sure. It's essentially an adverbial expression, and could still be taken either way.
I'm not sure how "adverbial" helps since the verb is ἐστιν. Perhaps you mean it applies to something more abstract, such as the situation of being armed with the sword?

Looking at the lexica, LSJ doesn't have the collocation of ἱκανόν with εἶναι, and all the other examples seem to be positive. BDAG has a few cites but does not gloss them negative. I suppose ἱκανόν ἐστιν could gloss Latin satis est, but those too appear positive from Lewis & Short. Of course, lexica don't always list every usage, but now I'd have to see actual parallels with ἱκανόν ἐστιν = Italian basta to accept option 1.
Good observations. It's fairly frequent in Greek for neuter accusatives to be used adverbially, and I don't think the use of ἐστί is any kind of problem with that, especially considering idiomatic expressions such as καλῶς ἔχει. Somebody could go through the citations found in Perseus or maybe find it in TLG and see what they discover...

Basta pasta! Not related to the discussion, but fun to say, especially after the meal is over... :)

Re: Luke 22:38 Ἱκανόν ἐστιν

Posted: October 14th, 2019, 8:18 am
by RandallButh
Stephen Carlson wrote:
October 13th, 2019, 7:37 pm
Barry Hofstetter wrote:
October 12th, 2019, 12:12 pm
I've been thinking about this, and I'm not so sure. It's essentially an adverbial expression, and could still be taken either way.
I'm not sure how "adverbial" helps since the verb is ἐστιν. Perhaps you mean it applies to something more abstract, such as the situation of being armed with the sword?

Looking at the lexica, LSJ doesn't have the collocation of ἱκανόν with εἶναι, and all the other examples seem to be positive. BDAG has a few cites but does not gloss them negative. I suppose ἱκανόν ἐστιν could gloss Latin satis est, but those too appear positive from Lewis & Short. Of course, lexica don't always list every usage, but now I'd have to see actual parallels with ἱκανόν ἐστιν = Italian basta to accept option 1.
די
רב
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