EN of the personal agent

From: alexali (alexali@surf.net.au)
Date: Sat Oct 09 1999 - 15:17:50 EDT

In yesterday's postings, Steven Craig Miller made the following interesting
comment about the use of EN:

>FWIW ... although occasionally a prepositional phrase with EN is taken to
express personal agency, it is very rare. Daniel B. Wallace, in his "Greek
Grammar Beyond the Basics" (1996), states that the best example for EN +
dative for personal agency is 1 Cor 6:2 "the world is to be judged BY YOU."
But Wallace states that such an interpretation is "by no means certain,"
and he cites Robertson-Plummer who suggest that EN hUMIN means "in your
court" or "in your jurisdiction." Thus there are no unambiguous examples
which would indicate that EN with personal agency is a viable phenomenon in
the Greek NT. Nonetheless, A.T. Robertson suggests Col 1:17 (534).

That EN of the personal agent (as opposed to its instrumental use) was
comparatively rare was something I'd not noted; but notice the ranting of
DAIMONIA (Luke 11:15 [and see the following verses for further uses of EN
in this sense, eg v19 where EN TINI is, I think, most naturally taken of
agency rather than instrumentality], // Matthew 12:24, Mark 3:22).

Dr Alex Hopkins
Melbourne, Australia

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