Re: Heb.11:16b...

From: Randy Leedy (
Date: Fri Jan 03 1997 - 15:50:25 EST

Carlton Winbery posted:

Tom Launder wrote;
>I have a question about Heb 11:16b....
>I have not been able to understand how the autous works in this
>sentence. Is the autous the subject of the complimentary infinitive
>epikaeisQai? Or is the autous the direct object with nothing to do
>the comp. inf?

Tom, I think that we have to take AUTOUS as the object of the verb
EPAISXUNETAI, "God did not dispise them." It is inside the structure
of the main clause. The infinitive EPIKALEISQAI then has the
understood subject QEON and indicates result. The result of the main
clause is that
"God is willing to be called their God." This may be a play on the
idea of
Hosea and the changing of the names from "not my people" to "my

>What about the second Qeos? Is this indirect discourse? Why the
>nominative case?
The second QEOS functions with the verb "called" as (what I call) a
nominative of appelation, like Luke 2:21 "His name was called

Carlton L. Winbery
Fogleman Professor of Religion
Louisiana College
Fax (318) 442-4996
Phone (318) 487-7241

Leedy here now:

I wonder whether I'm the only one who would beg to differ about
supplying an understood QEON and then having to call the anarthrous
QEOS a nominative of appelation?

Though I don't have an easy way to look up specific instances right
now, it seems to me that this is a fairly common construction: a
complementary infinitive follows a finite verb, sharing its subject,
and is completed in turn by a predicate noun or adjective in the
nominative. Of course, an explicit subject of the infinitive (if for
simplicity's sake I may so label the accusative of general
reference), whether or not it equates with the subject of the finite
verb, will be in the accusative, and any predicate renaming that
subject will also be accusative. But my hunch is that when the
infinitive's subject is NOT expressed, but instead is carried over
from the finite verb, any predicate noun or adjective completing the
infinitive will be in the nominative. This pattern makes me hesitant
to supply an accusative subject for the infinitive, since to do so
would create a case disagreement.

And I'm hesitant to call that predicate a nominative of appellation,
because, as far as I've observed, the predicate is ALWAYS nominative
in such a construction. This sort of construction is one reason I've
taken to labeling predicates as "predicate noun" or "predicate
adjective" rather than "predicate nominiative" or "predicate
accusative." With these terms I can call the predicate in this
construction by its proper function, (as opposed to the non-descript
"nominative of appelation" without having to quibble over what case
it should or shouldn't be in.

Any other opinions floating about out there?

In Love to God and Neighbor,
Randy Leedy
Bob Jones University
Greenville, SC

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