Revelation 21:5

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Jacob Rhoden
Posts: 145
Joined: February 15th, 2013, 8:16 am
Location: Greenville, South Carolina

Revelation 21:5

Post by Jacob Rhoden » June 2nd, 2018, 11:21 pm

Lately I am getting just a tiny bit more comfortable reading in Greek without reference to the English at all. Sometimes this leads to some odd misunderstandings of the Greek. :D
Καὶ εἶπεν ὁ καθήμενος ἐπὶ τῷ θρόνῳ, Ἰδοὺ καινὰ ποιῶ πάντα καὶ λέγει, Γράψον, ὅτι οὗτοι οἱ λόγοι πιστοὶ καὶ ἀληθινοί εἰσιν.
My first reading of this text, (due to not having my glasses on), saw this comma as a full stop (Γράψον. ὅτι ...) which provides the meaning:
And he said “Write”, because these words are faithful and true.
Which seemed quite odd. So I checked, and of course all translations extend the quote:
And he said “Write, because these words are faithful and true.”
I.e. the in the first instance the value judgement is by the author, as opposed to the second where the value judgement comes from God.

So, this morning, with my glasses on, I realize it’s a comma, not a full stop, but even so I am left with the question: have I made a grammatical mistake with how ”Γράψον, ὅτι ...” works, or is it actually a theoretically possible reading?
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Barry Hofstetter
Posts: 1474
Joined: May 6th, 2011, 1:48 pm

Re: Revelation 21:5

Post by Barry Hofstetter » June 3rd, 2018, 6:23 am

I think it would be unlikely even for the writer of Revelation to have an unattached subordinate clause.

BTW, these kinds of things happen all the time, and are often a sign that one's Greek is improving.
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N.E. Barry Hofstetter
Instructor of Latin
Jack M. Barrack Hebrew Academy
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