RE: Ephesians ~ Generic Dative?

From: Bill Ross (
Date: Sun Apr 25 1999 - 10:12:05 EDT

>The core 'sentence,' then, would be "You are existing."

Granted, ESTE is here centered between CARITI and SESWiSMENOI; why that
should mean that ESTE is a 'stand-alone' verb is not so easy to say.

Carl, you said that ESTE SESWiSMENOI was an evolution of the "normal" form
(sans ESTE). Are there other examples? It makes sense, but I'd sure feel
better seeing another example, particularly in Paul.

>(some might call it a "Dative of MEANS"). At any rate, they are likely to
assert that CARITI indicates the instrumentality whereby the salvation
referred to in ESTE SESWiSMENOI has been gained.

Would you say that this is equivalent to DIA? Paul is pretty consistent
about salvation being by means of faith, so I lean, as various translators
do in Romans 8:24, to a different sense of the dative, particularly since it
is juxtaposed with DIA in the next phrase. I'd prefer, at least, "in grace."

As to George's assertion that ESTE is a stand alone verb, in the sense of
"you exist," that is how I first read it, since the context has Paul showing
in this passage that the Church is God's new creation:

Eph 2:
10 For we are his workmanship, **created** in Christ Jesus unto good works,
which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.

If, as you have asserted, this present tense ESTE is normally/corruptly a
helping verb to the perfect participle, then I would abandon the reading. In
the absence of a Pauline, NT or contemporary example, George's reading seems
more easily supported grammatically, no? I am averse to interpreting the
reading as an example of Paul using a corrupted syntax.

The reading that the believers CARITI ESTE makes the "gift of God," referred
to in the latter part of the verse, the Church itself, not faith!

Again, although this reading is plausible grammatically and makes sense in
the context, it goes away if you can show that ESTE SESWiSMENOI is a normal
use of the perfect participle.

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