Re: Hebrews 11:1

From: Theodore H Mann (
Date: Tue May 04 1999 - 13:02:11 EDT

I have a translation that renders 11:1 as, "Faith is the substantiation
of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen." Is there any
merit to this?

Dr. Theodore "Ted" Mann
Orchard Lake, Michigan

On Tue, 04 May 1999 12:31:45 -0400 Jim West <jwest@Highland.Net> writes:
>At 12:04 PM 5/4/99 +0000, you wrote:
>>I have several questions regarding Hebrews 11:1, which reads as
>>1. One generally sees HUPOSTASIS and ELEGXOS translated with a
>>article in English, but they lack such in Greek. I realize that
>Greek and
>>English sometimes use the article in different ways. But wouldn't it
>>possible to render these words without the article, as in "Now faith
>is of
>>things hoped for a confident assurance, a conviction of things not
>Or perhaps, "Faith is substantive hopefulness and conviction without
>aid of
>I agree with your assesment that the definite article is not necessary
>in English either.
>>2. Does PRAGMATWN belong with ELPIZOMENWN, BLEPOMENWN, or both?
>Could it
>>possibly have a stronger force than "things" here; maybe something
>Or perhaps "deeds", "actions".
>>3. My main question is whether HUPOSTASIS should be taken as
>>or "assurance" here. (I looked in the archives and couldn't find a
>>discussion of this.) [snipped]
>I think "substantive" or some such meaning is most likely- though the
>is fairly broad. Still, I take it in almost a philosophical way, and
>believe that that is how the word is intended.
>>Any thoughts on this? Am I missing any evidence that is relevant to
>>question? And if the translation should be "substance," what is that
>>supposed to mean? Thanks in advance for whatever light you can shine
>>these questions.
>Well, faith is substantive- it is not mere "pie in the sky in the
>sweet bye
>and bye". I think the author here is intimating that faith is as real
>material reality. In fact, I might go so far as to say that he is
>using the idea of substance and reality in a Platonic sense. I.e., it
>the heavenly that is real and the earthly is merely shadow of that
>Faith then grasps the really real while discounting the apperance of
>"material" reality.
>>Kevin L. Barney
>Jim West, ThD
>Petros Baptist Church- Pastor
>Quartz Hill School of Theology- Adjunct Prof. of Bible
>fax- 978-231-5986
>web page-
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