Date: Sat Jun 01 1996 - 20:10:20 EDT
Eric, regarding your recent comments:
>The point Rod Rodgers made about taking AFESIN TWN hAMARTIWN
>hUMWN in Acts 2:38 with METANOHSATE seems worth examining because
>in the following passages from the gospels, it seems the reason
>people were baptized was to ceremonially validate the forgiveness
>of their sins that was achieved by their repentance:
> Matt 3:11 EGW MEN hUMAS BAPTIZW EN hUDATI EIS
> Mark 1:4 EGENETO IWANNHS [hO] BAPTIZWN EN TH ERHMW KAI
> KHRUSSWN BAPTISMA METANOIAS EIS AFESIN hAMARTIWN.
> Luke 3:3 KAI HLQEN...KHRUSSWN BAPTISMA METANOIAS EIS
> AFESIN hAMARTIWN.
>Indeed, if one insists that BAPTIZW plus EIS plus the accusative
>in Acts 2:38 MUST mean "result" (i.e., be baptized with the
>result that [or "so that"] your sins will be forgiven), then that
>means that John the Baptist in Matthew 3:11 was baptizing people
>with the result that they repented.
I doubt that you are suggesting that EIS should be translated "to
ceremonially validate". That understanding would have to be theologically
based. Rather, I think you are suggesting a causal meaning for EIS. But this
would also be founded in theology.
Writing in JBL in 1951, J.R. Mantey cited Mt 3:11, along with Mk 1:4 & Lk
3:3, and several other passages as examples of causal EIS. Mantey, whose
denominational creed required belief in forgiveness of sins prior to baptism,
hoped to explain Acts 2:38 in a manner consistent with his theology. Mantey
"None of the Greek lexicons translate EIS as causal. And the only
grammar that does, as far as we know, is _A Manual Grammar of the
Greek New Testament_ " [which of course was his own, JS]
Then Mantey proceeded to seek support for causal EIS in the writings of
Polybius and Josephus. Ralph Marcus responded in a subsequent issue of JBL,
showing the error of the conclusion Mantey deduced from these citations.
Mantey tried again, and Marcus wrote a final rejoinder, concluding with this:
"If, therefore, Prof. Mantey is right in his interpretation of various NT
on baptism and repentance and the remission of sins, he is right for
that are non-linguistic." JBL LXXI, p. 44.
These four articles are found in JBL LXX, pp. 45-48, pp.129-130, pp. 309-311
and LXXI pp. 43-44. They are very instructive, and, in my opinion, one who
delves into the meaning of EIS would do well to read them.
As for basing one's translation on one's theology, such a procedure implies
that one's theology is not based on scripture. Rather, his scripture is based
on his theology. Whence came his theology?
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