Re: Gal 2:20

From: Steve Long (
Date: Fri Apr 09 1999 - 15:41:20 EDT

>I don't think there's any disagreement at all about how this phrase holds
>together grammatically, but I have to add one "concluding unscientific
>postscript" about subjective and objective genitive: while context may
>help to determine whether hH TOU QEOU AGAPH means "God's love (for us)" or
>"love of/for God" in some particular instance, there is absolutely no
>morphological distinction between this phrase when interpreted as a
>"subjective" and/or as an "objective" genitive--and the syntactical
>distinction may very well be "in the eye of the (particular) grammarian."
>And this is why, although we may be confident that phrasing such as
>PISTEUW EIS TON IHSOUN means that faith/confidence is directed toward
>Jesus as its object, there is no way to determine, unless the context
>makes it crystal-clear, whether hH TOU IHSOU CRISTOU PISTIS means "faith
>directed to Jesus Christ" or "faithfulness of Jesus Christ." Often enough
>the context makes clear how the phrase should be interpreted, but there
>are instances in the GNT where the issue is NOT clear.
>Carl W. Conrad

Knowing that the use of the genitive is intentional, and it is not Paul's
intention to confuse us, I wonder if the use of the genitive with action
nouns such as PISTIS and AGAPH is not indicative of a two-way
relationship. A different genitive form, neither objective or subjective,
but reciprocal?

Just a weird idea from a little greek.

Steve Long

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