Re: EINAI in Titus 2:2

From: Christopher Hutson (
Date: Fri Aug 06 1999 - 09:34:16 EDT

Kevin Smith wrote:

>I am not exactly clear about the syntax of Titus 2:2. In UBS4 verse 2
begins a new sentence and NA27 a new sub-paragraph. However, it lacks a
finite verb. BDF (1961:¤389) regards EINAI as an imperitival infinitive. If
this is the case, should I: (a) regard PRESBUTAS as an accusative subject of
the infinitive, hence "Older men must be..." or (b) assume the ellipsis of a
main verb, e.g. PARAKALEI (cf. 2:6)?
>Is it not possible that PRESBUTAS is in apposition to hA in verse 1? Thus
the sense would be, "... teach what is consistent with sound doctrine,
namely, [for] older men to be...." Of course this would imply that 2:2 does
not begin a new sentence, but that hardly seems a problem. Is there some
reason I am unaware of that prevents PRESBUTAS from being in apposition to

I think you have the sense about right, but not the syntax. That is, I
don't think PRESBUTAS is in apposition to hA in 2:1, because the former is
masc. pl., while the latter is neuter, pl. I would read the entire list of
exhortations beginning in verse 2 as the contents of hA in verse 1. So I
think you are on track, but need to take the entire passage as a whole and
not just the one sentence.

As for the syntax of EINAI, I have always
understood an implied imperatival verb of speaking (e.g. LALEI, from 2:1) or
exhortation (e.g., PARAKALEI, from 2:6), and then I see the items of
instruction or exhortation are ticked off in infinitival clauses that depend
on the imperative verbs. So I would suggest the following translation:

"But as for you, speak (LALEI)what if fitting for sound doctrine.
¥(Tell--LALEI implied) the older men to be. . .
¥Likewise the older women (to be) . . .
   ¥so that they may temper the young women to be. . .
¥Exhort (PARAKALEI) the younger men likewise to be temperate. . .
¥The slaves likewise to be subject to their own masters. . ."

Does that make sense?

Grace be with you,


Christopher R. Hutson
          Hood Theological Seminary
          Salisbury, NC 28144

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