Re: Revelation 19:10

From: John Reece (
Date: Mon Feb 09 1998 - 03:36:15 EST

clayton stirling bartholomew wrote:
> John Reece wrote:
> >
> > In terms of Greek grammar, what is there to preclude translating THS
> > PROFHTEIAS in Revelation 19:10 the same way it is translated in 1:3 and
> > in 22:7,10,18,19?
> I think this question raises the issue of the relationship between the use of
> the article in NT Greek and "definiteness" as it is understood in English. If
> one studies the distribution of the article in NT Greek, one quickly discovers
> that a substantive without the article can be definite. It appears from this
> example in R 19:10 that a substantive with an article can also stand for an
> abstraction (prophecy), rather than a single specific identifiable item
> (the/this prophecy). This would odd if it occurred in English.
> The key to all of this is disengaging oneself from the rules of English, in
> this case the way English uses the article and treating the K. Greek article
> as different item all together. If one looks at the Greek article from Homer
> down to the late Koine period one discovers that the overlap in function
> between the English and the Greek article is not all that great.
> This does not really answer your question however, since I have not put forth
> an argument supporting the translation of THS PROFHTEIAS in Revelation 19:10
> as the abstract "prophecy". I leave that to the experts who seem to be taking
> Sunday off from b-greek.
> --
> Clayton Stirling Bartholomew
> Three Tree Point
> P.O. Box 255 Seahurst WA 98062


Thanks. I'm hoping to see if the arguments for interpreting the phrase
as indefinite *necessarily preclude* the possibility of interpreting it
as definite. Or is it grammatically ambiguous?


John Reece
Lillington, North Carolina, USA

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