Rev 12:18

clayton stirling bartholomew c.s.bartholomew at
Fri Jul 30 18:03:35 EDT 1999

>>> Ray Clendenen at BSSBNOTES
>>> 07/30/99 01:57 PM
>>> Does anyone know why some translations have 18 verses in Rev. 12 and some
>>> have only 17 verses and the contents of v. 18 ("and I/he stood upon the
>>> sand/shore of the sea") at the beginning of 13:1? Other than the I/he text
>>> problem I NA doesn't indicate a text problem.
>>> Ray Clendenen
>>> Broadman & Holman
>> Ray,
>> It is precisely the ESTAQH/ESTAQHN question which is the issue. If the
>> first person is read then it becomes a comment about the narrator which
>> falls into the next scene (13:1). If it is the third person it becomes a
>> comment about hO DRAKWN which belongs to 12:18.  (vid. H.B. Swete,
>> Revelation p160)
> I should have looked at the English versions before posting this. Since
> your question isn't really answered by my comment. All the English
> versions I have at hand put 12:18 into 13:1 without it being dependent
> on the textual issue.  So the editors of the english versions do not
> follow the thinking of H.B.Swete on this issue.


I decided to look further into this.

Forget the textual variant. Assume that ESTAQH (third person) is the
correct reading. Now you still have to decided where it belongs. The two
most recent commentators, Beale and Aune, do not agree on this. Aune
leans toward joining this with the preceding scene. One argument for
this the third person singular verbs in the preceding verses which have
hO DRAKWN as a subject. Another reason is the semantic awkwardness of
this statement at the beginning of the next scene. I agree with this

Beale's construction strikes me as off the wall for several reasons.
Beale argues that 12:18 should be joined syntactically with KAI EIDOV in
13:1. He thinks that the dragon standing by the sea is part of what is
being seen  KAI EIDOV in 13:1. I find this a most unconvincing
construction because it violates the characteristic syntactical pattern
of the Apocalypse for opening new scenes. What Beale is suggesting might
make sense in some other book of the NT but not in the Apocalypse.

Beale has a further strange comment on Rev 12:18. He states that some
"significant manuscripts" also have "I Saw" in 12:18. Well I wish he had
listed the "significant manuscripts" he is talking about because I
checked everything I have (Alford, R.H. Charles, Aune, H.B. Swete, . . .
several others) and the reading he is suggesting does not show up
anywhere. If it doesn't show up in R.H. Charles then I kind of doubt
that it is a  reading from "significant manuscripts" unless they were
discovered after Charles published. Even so, this would not explain why
Aune didn't mention these "significant manuscripts." Technical
commentaries should not make vague statements like this. These are the
kinds of statements you put in the margins of English translations, the
have no place in a commentary intended for use by scholars.

Clayton Stirling Bartholomew
Three Tree Point
P.O. Box 255 Seahurst WA 98062

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