[b-greek] Re: 1Cor 16:3

From: Carl W. Conrad (cwconrad@artsci.wustl.edu)
Date: Sat Aug 25 2001 - 04:44:57 EDT

I've changed my opinion on this matter--not about the essential meaning of
DIA, which I still think here must be understood with EPISTOLWN as "by
means of letters"--but about the verse as a whole. Punctuation (which
generally involves the interpretation of the editor{s}) and word-order
combine to make this a bit tricky. USB4/NA27 print this with a comma after
DOKIMASHTE and no break after DI' EPISTOLWN, indicating that the committee
understood DI' EPISTOLWN to be construed with TOUTOUS PEMYW: "I will send
them DI' EPISTOLWN." I think that contemporary English probably would say,
"I'll send them WITH letters"--but I still think that the choice of DIA
here means that the letters are instrumental to Paul's sending of the
delegates. The letters must be letters of recommendation or letters of
certification: letters whereby Paul introduces the delegates sent to the
authorities in the Jerusalem community. We might best express this meaning
by conveying the whole as, "Once I arrive, I'll dispatch whatever delegates
you approve with letters certifying them." The phrase DI' EPISTOLWN is
still essentially "instrumental" in function: the letters are not simply
documents carried by the delegates but rather documents that will validate
them for those who receive the delegates (and letters).

At 8:08 PM -0700 8/24/01, Dmitriy Reznik wrote:
>Dear Carl:
>I understand that DIA means "through", but I don't understand how Paul is
>going to send people to Jerusalem "through letters".
>On Fri, 24 Aug 2001 19:44:15 -0400 "Carl W. Conrad"
><cwconrad@artsci.wustl.edu> writes:
>> At 6:39 PM -0700 8/24/01, Dmitriy Reznik wrote:
>> >Dear friends:
>> >I have a question conserning usage of DIA in 1Cor 16:3.
>> >etc.
>> >"And when I arrive, whomsoever ye shall approve, them will I send
>> with
>> >letters to carry your bounty unto Jerusalem".
>> >Is it correct to translate DIA as "with"? And if not, what can it
>> mean in
>> >the text?
>> Not "with", in my opinion, but rather "by means of". Louw & Nida:
>> 90.8 DIA (with the genitive): a marker of the instrument by which
>> something
>> is accomplished - 'by means of, through, with.' GRAFEIN OUK
>> CARTOU KAI MELANOS 'I would rather not write with paper and ink' 2
>> Jn 12.
>> --
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Carl W. Conrad
Department of Classics, Washington University (Emeritus)
Most months: 1647 Grindstaff Road/Burnsville, NC 28714/(828) 675-4243
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