RE: parassein ta idia in 1 Thess 4:11

From: Clayton Bartholomew (
Date: Fri Sep 05 1997 - 05:47:51 EDT

LORIL asked,
I am curious how this phrase "parassein ta idia" became translated I
couldn't find in L&N.


The semantic domain of PARASSW includes *to busy yourself with* and *to
practice* as well as several other possible meanings. TA IDIA means *the
things belonging to one.* The rendering "to mind
your own business" is not really bad but I believe it misses the thrust of
what Paul is after here.
A non-serious translation that jumped out at me was *do your own thing*
(Jim Morrison) but I don't think the context allows this translation. I would
say the primary consideration is the context here because PARASSEIN TA
IDIA is a fairly bland phrase. I think that a better paraphrastic rendering in
light of Paul's other instructions in this passage might be *busy yourself
with your own responsibilities.* This rendering is not very literal. TA IDIA
does not mean *your responsibilities*, never the less I think it gets at
Paul's sense better than the English idiom "to mind
your own business"?

Clay Bartholomew
Three Tree Point

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