Re: Do you know the answer to my question?

From: neva daley (
Date: Sat Sep 04 1999 - 15:46:33 EDT

Dear Mr. Conrad,
     Thank you so much for your quick response to my previous questions. I
am very grateful that you took the time out to address them. I have been
intending to write to you sooner to let you know I received your email but I
was out of town and then school started right after I got back. Please
forgive me. Actually, I did have two comments in response to what you said
                #1 You stated that it is not clear in the Luke passage to
whom the statement is
                        directed. However, in Luke 11:18, the "you"
clearly refers to the Pharisees.
                        One could then infer that the people referred to as
"you" are those identified as
                        "them" in the beginning of the passage. Is this an
incorrect judgment?
                #2 Preceding both opening statements in Luke 11:17 as
well as Matthew 12:25,
                        the verses mention "the Pharisees" as well as "the
crowds." But you
                        mentioned that it is for this reason why it is not
clear in Luke to whom the
                        statement is directed. Can you explain. I see that
if you look only at the
                        preceding verse in Matthew 12:24, then it would be
absolutely clear to whom the
                        statement is directed. But then the crowds were
mentioned in v. 23 also.

Thanks again.


--On Saturday, July 31, 1999, 6:19 AM -0400 "Carl W. Conrad"
<> wrote:

> The passage to which you refer in Luke 11 and Matthew 12 is commonly
> attributed by most Synoptic Gospel critics to the "Q" source of material
> which is identical or nearly identical in Luke and Matthew, although some
> believe that this material was composed by one of the two evangelists and
> taken over by the other. That's a long and complicated matter, and also
> very controversial, and I don't want to go further into it. Suffice it to
> say that the wording of Lk 11:18-20 and Mt 12:25-28 is so nearly identical
> that scholars believe both must originally derive from a common source.
> form of "you" in the Greek of both gospels in these sections is the
> second-person plural, and this means that those who are addressed
> at the beginning of this Jesus-saying should be the same persons
> the saying. HOWEVER, there is an important difference in the context in
> two gospels: in Lk 11, it is NOT indicated who the persons are to whom
> Jesus is speaking; 11:14-15 gives "the crowds" and then "some of them" as
> the speakers of the "This man ..." saying, while Mt 12:24-25 points first
> to the wonderment of "all the crowd" and then says, "But the Pharisees
> ..."--so that it is only in Matthew that the saying is clearly and
> explicitly addressed to Pharisees. I hope this helps, but that's about all
> I can tell you about this matter.
> Regards, cwc
> At 3:14 PM -0400 7/30/99, neva daley wrote:
>>Hello Mr. Conrad,
>> I happened to find the BGreek website yesterday while searching for
>>someone with an indepth Greek background that I could ask a Biblical text
>>question. I am not a student of Greek but I studied Latin for two years
>>high school so I am aware of the richness of grammar that is found in some
>>ancient languages. I would like someone to look into the grammatical form
>>of a word used in a passage of Scripture.
>> Excuse me if my question may seem insignificant or may have an
>>answer, but it is something that I have been churning over in my mind for
>>a long time and have not been able to answer firmly for myself. I would
>>gratefully appreciate your insight and expertise in this matter. My
>>question is related to passages in Luke 11 and Matt 12 and is this:
>>In Luke 11:17, Jesus opens a dialogue with the Pharisees who had already
>>made claims that he was driving demons out with an evil power rather than
>>God's power. Now when we read further in Luke 11:20 Jesus makes a
>>statement and ends the sentence with "you." From the Greek text, would
>>be able to determine if the "you" at the end of this sentence in verse 20
>>is the same "you" in Luke 11:18? Or are they general forms of "you" that
>>you can't make a distinction as to whom it refers. Do you make an
>>assumption based on syntax and context? My reason for this questionis
>>if the "you" definitively refers to the Pharisees in both verses then I
>>think this has profound implications. If "you" in Luke 11:20 refers to
>>Pharisees, then although they may have made an incorrect judgment of
>>Jesus's power, if the Pharisees believed differently later on, then they
>>also could be saved. The same point would be gathered from Matthew 12:28,
>>the "you" at the end of the sentence would also refer to the Pharisees as
>>I have looked at both passages in the NIV and I can't definitively say
>>"you" refers to the Pharisees. I could make the assumption based on the
>>fact that the text says that "Jesus knew their thoughts and said to THEM"
>>in Luke 11:17 and Matt 12:25, so "you" would refer to the Pharisees based
>>on the rules of English grammar. But them I sometimes think that the
>>refers to a general "you." And the Pharisees would not be included with
>>"you". They would rather be excluded because they had already spoken
>>against the Holy Spirit, an unforgiveable sin, so God's kingdom could
>>come to them.
>>I hope that my questions and ideas are clear to you and I look forward to
>>your response. Thanks so much for taking the time to consider my
>>Neva Daley
>>3rd year Student
>>SUNY at Buffalo School of Medicine
> Carl W. Conrad
> Department of Classics, Washington University
> Summer: 1647 Grindstaff Road/Burnsville, NC 28714/(828) 675-4243
> WWW:

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