Re: Jude 1:3; KOINHS

From: Carl W. Conrad (
Date: Fri Aug 28 1998 - 16:26:14 EDT

At 1:22 PM -0500 8/28/98, Martin Gallagher wrote:
>Hello all,
>Is there any grammatical reason why KOINHS in Jude 1:3 may not be
>translated as 'profane', rather than 'shared'?

I don't think so. If KOINHS SWTHRIAS were to be understood as "profane
salvation," then there would have to be some understood hIERA SWTHRIA, a
"sacred salvation." But what would this mean?
>The only other place that I have found this word used in the same
>manner is in Titus 1:4 (KOINHS PISTIN). the only difference being that
>in Jude, HMWN is used between the adjective and its subject, and there
>is a definite article here (THS KOINHS HMWN SWTHRIAS).
>I have seen no evidence of dispute about this word in any translations
>or commentary, with the exception of the exclusion of HMWN some texts.
>Theological argument allows this verse and the one in Titus to use
>'profane', but is it valid grammatically?

It's valid grammatically, yes, but it's hard to see what sense "profane"
would have in either place: the antithesis of 'profane' is 'sacred'--but
are we talking about a kind of salvation or about a kind of faith that is
profane rather than sacred?

The fundamental sense of KOINOS/H/ON is "common," "shared." When KOINOS has
a pejorative sense, it really means "vulgar," beneath standards of good
taste, worthless.

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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