Re: Revelation 19:10

From: Jonathan Robie (
Date: Mon Feb 09 1998 - 07:04:27 EST

At 03:36 AM 2/9/98 -0500, John Reece wrote:
>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
>> that a substantive without the article can be definite. It appears from
>> 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.
Abstract and indefinite are two different things. In English, we
distinguish between "a prophecy" (indefinite), "prophecy" (abstract), and
"the prophecy" (definite). In Greek, abstract substantives generally have
the article, in English they generally do not, though they can in phrases
like "the good is the enemy of the best". I wonder if this feature of the
Greek language influenced Platonic philosophy.


Jonathan Robie

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