[b-greek] Romans 3:19 "those under the law"; EN vs HUPO

From: Bret Hicks (bret@ratedg.com)
Date: Thu Jul 13 2000 - 10:22:16 EDT

    In Romans 3:19, Paul says that the law is speaking TOIS EN TWi
NOMWi. Most translations have this as being "those under the law."
While I understand the idea of the locative here (that it speaks to
those in the realm/sphere/jurisdiction of the law), I am confused as to
why Paul used this unusual phrase to express the idea here.
    From what I can tell, the phrase EN TWi NOMWi is used 13 times in
the NT, and only here and Romans 7:23 does it carry any sense other than
something being spoken "in the Law." Additionally, Paul uses EN NOMW 7
times, and only in 1 place does it carry any sense like "under the
authority of the law." (Romans 2:12). Finally, Paul uses HUPO NOMON 11
times to express "under the law."
    My question is why he did not simply use HUPO NOMON here. It seems
as if this is the intent; so why not simply use the phrase? Wouldn't
this be the more "normal" way of saying this? Or is there something
conveyed by EN TWi NOMWi that would not be conveyed by HUPO NOMON?
    Any help would be greatly appreciated.

In the grace of Christ,

Bret Hicks
Pastor, Bay Ridge Christian Church
Annapolis, Maryland

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