From: Carl W. Conrad (
Date: Mon Aug 24 1998 - 19:23:12 EDT

At 3:22 PM -0500 8/24/98, clayton stirling bartholomew wrote:
>The last half of Acts 13:48 admits several readings. EIS ZWHN AIWNION can be
>joined with TETAGMENOI or with EPISTEUSAN. I have not looked into English
>translations but I suspect from reading H. A. W. Meyer's comments that the
>word order leads most commentators to join EIS ZWHN AIWNION with TETAGMENOI.
>The more I stared at this passage the more intrigued I became with the
>options. Luke likes to put subordinate clauses in the middle of a main clause
>to separate the major constituents of the main clause. Therefore, one reading
>I came up with (far fetched?) is that hOSOI is functioning here as a relative
>pronoun introducing a relative clause hOSOI HSAN TETAGMENOI and that the
>antecedent of hOSOI is the unstated subject of EPISTEUSAN. The main clause
>would be EPISTEUSAN EIS ZWHN AIWNION, where EIS . . . would read as a result
>of the action EPISTEUSAN.
>Another option is to read hOSOI as the subject of EPISTEUSAN but then it
>appears to be the subject of two finite verbs or is it?
>I don't think I have this quite sorted out correctly. Would anyone like to
>help me clear this up?

I'd say that what we have here is an emphatic initial verb used absolutely:
EPISTEUSAN; then follows the subject which is expressed in a relative
clause: hOSOI HSAN TETAGMENOI EIS ZWHN AIWNION, "all who had been appointed
to eternal life." I hardly think that PISTEUW would be used with a phrase
of this sort; is eternal life something one believes "in" as an object, or
"to the end of ..."? The latter might make some sense, but it is far easier
to understand PISTEUW here as used in an absolute sense: "came to belief."
Moreover, I personally think that EIS ZWHN AIWNION is at a very awkward
remove from EPISTEUSAN to be construed with it; it's just very unnatural.

I was a bit surprised, Clay, that you didn't call attention to the neuter
plural subject used with a plural verb in the beginning of this verse:

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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