[b-greek] Re: EN TWi ONOMATI MOU

From: Mike Sangrey (mike@sojurn.lns.pa.us)
Date: Sun Jun 25 2000 - 20:15:18 EDT

"Mark Wilson" <emory2002@hotmail.com> said:
>> He indicated that this word had many meanings. such as:
>> 1. all that a name implies or covers
>> 2. authority
>> 3. character
>> 4. rank
>> 5. majesty
>> 6. power
>> 7. excellence
>> Based on this list, he translates it "legacy" which he says kind of
>> groups them all together. Is this acceptable?

Jim West jwest@Highland.Net said:
> over reading again. onomatos merely means "name". the verse merely
> says "if you ask anything in my name..." etc. what that means is open
> to interpretation; but to suggest that the greek implies the chosen
> reading is eisegetical manipulation of the text rather than
> responsible exegetically based interpretation.

I'd like to balance this statement by saying I think this ventures into
the difficult question of determining the overlap between the jurisdiction
of the Translator and that of the Teacher. Also, one needs to determine
where on the prickly Dynamic Equivalence vis-a-vis Formal Equivalence
bench one wants to park one's posterior. (A discussion the moderators
probably won't sit for--I don't blame them.)

To illustrate my "jurisdiction" point: OFQALMOS "means" 'eye'. However,
in Acts 28:27 we have TOUS OFQALMOUS AUTWN EKAMMUSAN, which literally
translated would be "they have closed their eyes." Now that works fairly
well in English; we catch the figurative drift of it. However, in some
languages this might be taken to mean that the people have refused the
Gospel to the point of physical death. Which isn't what the context
means. A more dynamic effort must be accepted in these other languages.
(See Louw & Nida 27.50.)

The point I'm really making boils down to this: The translation must
be accurate; AND, that goal is exacerbated by the fact that the meaning
is cradled in the context. You can't just pay your nickel and take your
choice; it's going to cost you a dime.

Frankly, I think a better translation of hO TI AN AITHSHTE EN TWi ONOMATI
MOU would be "if you ask anything by representing me..." which isn't
quite caught in any of the seven listed above. But, I could be wrong.

Mike Sangrey
Landisburg, Pa.
       Every Christian library should have a plaque which states:
            "There is one book which explains all of these."

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