RE:Subject: hINA, this time in 1 John 1:9

From: Carl W. Conrad (
Date: Mon Sep 08 1997 - 08:54:20 EDT

With regard to what Clay has himself termed a "tirade" against Wallace's
treatment, not so much of this verse, but rather of Wallace's
categorization of some hINA clauses as "purpose-result," I think perhaps I
need to clarify my own post in this thread and qualify my commendation of
Wallace's treatment of substantive hINA clauses there.

At 8:55 AM -0500 9/7/97, Clayton Bartholomew wrote:
>Wallace's comment is a bit of a conundrum itself. He says in reference to
>the hINA clause in 1John 1:9 "This text is a theological conundrum: it
>could be treated as purpose, result or purpose-result."
>There are a couple of things that bother me about Wallace's analysis.
>First and most obvious is his labeling the choice among *purpose,
>result or purpose-result* as a * theological conundrum* seems to be
>getting the cart before the horse. First of all it is a syntax problem. The
>solution to the syntax problem will have an impact on theology, no
>doubt, but why are we calling it a *theological conundrum*?

I agree that the term here used is at best misleading in terms of its
intent; but I think that Wallace has explained his "purpose-result"
category with reasonable clarity on p. 473 in terms of BAGD and Moule. He
says there, "It is, of course, possible to treat each of these examples as
simply purpose hINA clauses in which there is evidently no doubt about the
accomplishment from the speaker's viewpoint. Hence, IN ORDER THAT is an
acceptable gloss."

>My second problem with this analysis is the breakdown of the
>purpose/result issue. By adding the third category *purpose-results*
>we seem to be admitting that the purpose/results binary opposition
>does not cover the data. I don't think the way to solve this is to provide
>a middle term *purpose-results.* The need for the equivocating middle
>term *purpose-results* is adequate evidence that the purpose/results
>binary opposition is not the best way to model the phenomena. This was
>the main thrust of my previous tirade.

The way I read Wallace, he doesn't intend the opposition of purpose/result
to cover the phenomena of hINA clauses but rather, not having invented it
himself, feels that it fits certain passages where divine intent and actual
achievement both seem implicit in the clause. My own commendation of
Wallace's treatment of hINA clauses in my earlier post in this thread
concerned rather that he distinguishes the several types of hINA
substantive clauses (pp. 474-476) and also two types on p. 476 that he
terms "epexegetical hINA clause" and "complementary hINA clause" wherein
the clause is clearly the equivalent of an infinitive and performs some of
the same functions that an infinitive can perform. In my earlier post, I
agreed that this our hINA clause in 1 John 1:9 is a result clause and said
that I thought this would best be signaled by translating it, "so that he
will forgive ... and cleanse ..."--but I also said that I thought it would
be better translated into English as an infinitive (as indeed the RSV
translates it), and this is in fact an instance that I think may well be
termed "epexegetical": the hINA clause functions like an epexegetical
infinitive with the adjectives PISTOS and DIKAIOS.

I don't know whether there's been any extensive treatment of hINA clauses
in the NT in a monograph or long article, but if there hasn't, it seems to
me that it would be well worth an extensive fresh treatment that would (1)
differentiate NT usage from classical Attic usage as well as the modern
Greek usage of the hINA clause as an infinitive while clarifying, if
possible, developmental relationships to each (perhaps at the same time
investigating parallels and possible influence of Latin constructions of UT
+ subjunctive and Semitic construction of a similar sort), (2) formulate an
intelligible categorization of the distinct hINA adverbial and hINA
substantival clauses in the NT to clarify all the instances of this
important syntactic phenomenon. I should add that such a task would not be
complete without taking into account the range of hINA clauses in secular
Hellenistic Greek. Do you, MICHEAL PALMER (hoping to get your
attention!--just in case you're not reading the mass of verbiage produced
on B-Greek in daily or more frequent increments), know--or does anyone else
(Rod Decker, Rolf, Mari ...) know if a thorough study of this magnitude has
ever been done on hINA clauses?

Carl W. Conrad
Department of Classics/Washington University
One Brookings Drive/St. Louis, MO, USA 63130/(314) 935-4018
Home: 7222 Colgate Ave./St. Louis, MO 63130/(314) 726-5649 OR

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