From: Theodore H Mann (
Date: Mon Mar 15 1999 - 12:30:38 EST

I have probably failed to fully grasp Carl's explanation (below), but it
does seem to me that while APEIQW can be translated "obey," it would much
more natural, given the context, to translate it "believe" in both
instances in Jn.3:36: "He who believes..." vs. "He who does not believe
....," or "The believing one....." vs. "The unbelieving one.... "

Theodore "Ted" Mann

On Mon, 15 Mar 1999 08:29:04 -0600 "Carl W. Conrad"
<> writes:
>At 7:19 AM -0600 3/15/99, wrote:
>>Denny Diehl here with a question on APEIQW
>>In Jn 3:36 the KJV translates:
>>"He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life:
>>and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life;
>>but the wrath of God abideth on him."
>>But NASB translates:
>>"He who believes in the Son has eternal life; but he
>>who does not obey the Son shall not see life, but the
>>wrath of God abides on him."
>>Why would APEIQW be variously translated as "unbelieving"
>>and "not obey"?
>An interesting enough question, and one that a little bit of etymology
>(as occasionally) contribute some insight: the Greek root seen in
>nouns and
>verbs for faith, belief and obedience is PEIQ/POIQ/PIQ: this shows in
>active verb PEIQW: "persuade," the middle of which, PEIQOMAI, may
>"allow oneself to be won over" but quite commonly is used in the
>"give heed to," "obey." The zero-grade form of the root (PIQ) appears
>the noun PISTIS (<PIQ-TIS with assimilation of -Q- to an -S- before
>"faith," and the verb PISTEUW "believe," "have faith," "come to
>The verb you're referring to is a denominative: uncontracted it is
>derived from the adjective A-PEIQHS which normally has a sense derived
>the middle form of the verb PEIQW/PEIQOMAI: "untrusting,"
>"unbelieving" or
>"not obedient."
>Another verb from an altogether different root found in the NT for
>idea is hUPAKOUW, which means something like "listen to as to an
>authority," which carries over into the sense "give heed to" =
>There's a cognate noun hUPAKOH for "obedience" that is used commonly
>enough, I think, in company with the noun PISTIS. Particularly in the
>Hebraic tradition, there's a close linkage between the notions of
>faith and
>obedience, but that linkage is also present in the earlier classical
>verb PEIQOMAI, which quite regular does, in fact, mean "obey."
>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
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