Re: John 1:3 Who is AUTOU?

From: Apokrisis1@aol.com
Date: Fri Sep 19 1997 - 01:26:17 EDT


In a message dated 97-09-18 16:10:32 EDT, you write:

<< In John 1:3 I read: PANTA DIí AUTOU EGENETO... My question is this: to
 whom does AUTOU refer? Now I think that it refers to hO LOGOS of verses
 1 and 2. The thing is, the nearest referent (at the end of verse 2) is
 THEON as in hOUTOS HN ... PROS TON THEON. The thing is, why doesnít the
 pronoun AUTOU of verse 3 refer to the noun THEON as the nearest referent
 (as I believe would be the case in English). >>

Hello, Charmon:

The truth is pronouns do not always refer back to the nearest referent. Take
for example 2 John 7. Surely hOUTOS ESTIN hO PLANOS KAI hO ANTICHRISTOS does
refer back to IHSOUN CHRISTON. It is a matter of context, and the progression
of thought as found therein. In John 1:1-3 (also 4 and 5) the focus is on hO
LOGOS.

While your observation is an astute one, it seems clear enough that the AUTOU
of verse three refers back, not to the nearest referent, but to the subject
of the previous clause, namely, hOUTOS (= hO LOGOS). In verse 3 John is
highlighting the intermediary role the LOGOS had in creation, which is
elsewhere attriubted to the prehuman Jesus. (1 Cor. 8:6; Heb. 1:3; Col
1:15-17)

Hope this helps!

Greg Stafford
University of Wisconsin



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