RE: The hUMWN variant in 2 Cor 6:11

From: Jason Hare (
Date: Thu Mar 30 2000 - 10:51:20 EST

> I have suggested recently that the generally
rejected > hUMWN variant in 2 Cor 6:11 may actually
make good > sense; pp 231-39 of "The Corinthian
Crisis", > available in .pdf format at:

Most textual arguments are not over what "makes good
sense" and what doesn't. Most are over what the
evidence leads us to believe. In this case there are
three uncials (Aleph, B and 0243) that have the hUMWN
reading and all the others have hHMWN. Then there are
a few minuscules. However, the majority and all other
witnesses seem to read hHMWN. Perhaps this is the
reason for reading it that way.

> By taking THN DE AUTHN ANTIMISQIAN in apposition
> following translation seems to be feasible:
> Our mouth [has opened and] is open to you,
> Corinthians! Your heart has become enlarged. You
> are not being crushed by us; you are being crushed
> by your inward parts, the corresponding penalty! -
I > am speaking as though to children. Be indeed
> enlarged!

You are taking KAI in v. 13 to mean "indeed" (´Be
indeed enlarged!ª). I think it should be "also." If
this is the case, the hHMWN in verse 11 is
understandable. It says "_our_ hearts are opened-wide
(you have enlarged, probably not for good reason); in
return, _you_ open-wide also!" The whole passage
seems, rather than talking about eating too much or
whatever, to deal with passion (hence SPLANCNA, which
is most consistently used of emotion in the NT with
only one exception [Judas' death]) in the inner parts
and the heart.

Paul says, "Our mouth is opened to you, Corinthians.
Our heart is wide open (/enlarged). You are not being
limited by us, but you are being limited by your
passions. And the same response [is] (I speak as to
children), _you_ also be wide open (/enlarged) [to

This goes with Paul's preceeding words: "We put no
obstacle in any one's way" (v. 3). That is, "you are
not being limited by us. We have opened our hearts to
you. Where is your logical response? Open up to
us!!! Why do I have to tell you this as if you are

> I am suggesting that Paul is using a simple, even
> crude anatomical metaphor. Like children who have
> eaten too much, the Corinthians are suffering from
> the bloating of their 'inner parts'. The real cause
> of the STENOCWRIA they complain of is not any
failure > in Paul's ministry, but their lust for idol
> They are suffering the corresponding penalty -
divine > discipline (with an allusion to Deut
11:13-17). The
> suggested exegetical basis depends upon a
> non-standard reconstruction of the events leading up
> to he composition of 2 Corinthians, and is too
> complex to be summarized in detail here. However, I
> would like to invite comments on any syntactical
> issues. In particular, is there anything
> questionable about the repetition of DE in

DE does not necessarily represent an opposite. It
can, as a matter of fact, begin discourses. In such
cases (when it does not show an opposite) it can be
used like "and" or "now." So it doesn't really have a
problem here. Look up at my translation above.

I don't know if this will convince you, since you want
to see this as refering to symbolic picture of
physical organs being enlarged. I think it is
reasonable, though, to understand that references to
KARDIA mostly refer to the emotion seat, as do those
to SPLANCNON and that the enlarging/widening of such
should also be emotional.

Jason Hare

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