Re: Another Carson Question--Sort Of

From: Dale M. Wheeler (
Date: Fri Apr 10 1998 - 12:19:25 EDT

Mark O'Brien wrote:
>At 08:36 AM 4/7/98 -0700, you wrote:
>>On page 84 of _Exegetical Fallacies_, Carson discusses the GS Rule.
>>Carson (as do others) says that the GS Rule applies to persons and
>>**things**. Others insist that the "rule" only applies to PERSONS.
>>Who is right?
>I believe, IMHO, that Wallace has done the most exhaustive work on the
>Granville Sharp Rule... you should read either his PhD dissertation or the
>summary of this in his grammar. The bottom line (according to Wallace)...
>GS applies only to those cases where:
>1. neither noun is impersonal
>2. neither noun is plural
>3. neither noun is a proper name

I would like to second what Mark has said here. I found it strange that
Don Carson would say that the G-S rule applies to things (or plurals), so
I went and looked at his discussion. He says neither one of those things,
in fact he goes to great lengths to point out that when the G-S
construction uses things and plurals that it is not a valid example
of the G-S construction. One could wish that he had simply stated the
situation as Mark (Dan Wallace, Granville-Sharp himself) stated it
above; nevertheless, he never says things and plurals are examples of
the valid use of the G-S; he calls such things a "softer form" of the
G-S rule. This is NOT an example where Carson disagrees--for some
theological motivation--with some other NT grammarian; this rule is
a grammatical RULE (ie., speakers consistenly employ this construction
in the way it is described by NT Greek grammarians and Granville-Sharp


Dale M. Wheeler, Ph.D.
Research Professor in Biblical Languages Multnomah Bible College
8435 NE Glisan Street Portland, OR 97220
Voice: 503-251-6416 FAX:503-254-1268 E-Mail:

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