Re: Mark 6:2 Question about TI"

From: Jim West (jwest@Highland.Net)
Date: Tue Feb 16 1999 - 03:33:34 EST

At 07:54 AM 2/16/99 +0000, you wrote:
> Every single translation I have
>checked has used the word 'what' in Mark 6:2. Can someone please tell me
>why it can not be translated 'why'?

Because it would make no sense to translate it "why". "where does this man
get these things? why has wisdom been given to this man?" ???? Perhaps I
am just missing it- but I don't see any problem with the typical and in fact
universal translation of the particle with "what".

> Using Gramcord to search the NASU NT
>for every use of the term 'why' produced no uses of the form 'TI"' only
>'TI.' There were a few other terms used, but never 'TI".' If the reason
>is that only the neuter singular accusative can be translated 'why', please
>tell me why that is. The context of Mark 6:2 would seem to support the
>question, "why is wisdom given to him?"

Again- I don't see it. It is important, I think, to remember that words
must be translated in context. A decontextualized translation which merely
picks one of the dictionary defintions and splats it into place will
sometimes miss the boat. Words don't have meaning outside of some context.

>Thank you for helping an idiot who dosn't like to agree just because
>everyone else does. Sure would save time if I did though. I just like to
>understand why.

It seems to me that the particle can be so widely used (differing cases
notwithstanding) that one must choose, in translation, the most sensible
rendering. Translation is equal parts of art and science. Forget the art-
and the rendering is wooden and nonsensical; but forget the science and the
translation is meaningless and inaccurate.



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Jim West, ThD
Quartz Hill School of Theology

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