[B-Greek] Can QEOS be used in apposition to MONOGENHS in John1:18-revised
hholmyard3 at earthlink.net
Thu Nov 5 17:38:51 EST 2009
> It is right to wonder to what extent the author of GJohn 1 was thinking with Hebrew or Syriac-Aramaic, or whether the Greek text represents an over-literal translation of a Semitic original text. Matthew Black gives a nod to Burney's elegant solution to the problem of this text (Aramaic Approach, 11). He suggests that an Aramaic YeCHiDh 'eLaHa "the only begotten of God" was translated MONOGENHS QEOS. And, of course, that could also be "only begotten, beloved one" of God this would make a good link with the bit about being in the KOLPON of the Father.
> GJohn 1:18 is not only text that gives a defective or confusing sense in Greek because of interference from Semitic background. But I am intrigued by one of Rolf's comments.
HH: An "over-literal translation" would be a wrong translation, wouldn't
it? How is it an "elegant solution" to suggest that the Greek is a
mistranslation from the Aramaic?
> Perhaps we should also remember that GJohn is a highly polemical text in which disciples are also being schooled in crafting, within first century Judasims, non-standard messages about Jesus in a highly volatile social situation. Here in John 1:18 "mistranslation" may be a stealthy way to hedge the statement. In other words, GJohn may be using a cleverness of expression common in Greco-Roman rhetoric, figured expression with built in plausible deniability called EMFASIS, used frequently in moments in which the speaker must speak in a stealthy way. This way of constantly, carefully parsing one's words to simultaneously hide and reveal meaning was a characteristic of Jesus and is a characteristic of oppressed peoples in general, as seen in James Scott, Domination and the Arts of Resistance. Scott's work is used to great effect by Warren Carter in John and Empire: Initial Explorations.
HH: Here the suggestion seems to be that it could have been deliberately
wrong. Where is the cleverness here?
HH: Thanks for all the effort that went into this post, but I must be
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