THN KLHSIN hUMWN in 1 Cor. 1:26

boyd at pcpartner.net boyd at pcpartner.net
Sat Aug 11 11:06:35 EDT 2001


Dear B-greekers,

I'm working through 1 Corinthians 1:18--2:5 and have hit a snag in 
my understanding at verse 26.  

1 Cor. 1:26
BLEPETE GAR THN KLHSIN hUMWN, ADELFOI, hOTI OU 
POLLOI SOFOI KATA SARKA, OU POLLOI DUNATOI, OU 
POLLOI EUGENEIS.

My question deals with the words THN KLHSIN hUMWN.  
BDAG lists two meanings for KLHSIS: 
1) invitation to experience of special privilege and responsibility, 
call, calling, invitation; 
2) position that one holds, position, condition;*** 

BDAG lists 1 Cor. 1:26 under meaning #1, giving the translation 
"consider your call i.e., what happened when it occurred."

Based on these meanings here are two of my possible translations 
of the verse:

Based on meaning #1: "For consider what happened when you 
were called, brothers, [namely] that not many wise, not many 
powerful, not many well-born [responded]." 

Based on meaning #2: "For consider your station in life, brothers, 
[namely] that not many [were] wise, not many [were] powerful, not 
many [were] well-born."

I've always previously understood this verse to speak of their 
"position" or "station in life," but now I don't know.  Did I accurately 
reflect BDAG's meaning #1 in my first translation?  Any help would 
be much appreciated.

Jonathan Boyd
Huxley, IA

*** Incidentally, Gordon Fee _The First Epistle to the Corinthians_ 
(NICNT), says that BAGD's second meaning isn't supported by 
evidence.  But then he opts for an understanding similar to 
meaning #2.  Curious? 



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