Passive Agent

c stirling bartholomew cc.constantine at
Thu Aug 16 15:58:00 EDT 2001

on 8/16/01 11:57 AM, Matthew R. Miller wrote:

> In Colossians 1:16, "en autw ektisthh ta panta" is usually translated "by
> him all things were created." This "en autw" is not the normal dative of
> instrument or dative of means or dative of passive agent. Is this to be
> taken as a passive agent? If not, what does the locative dative "in him"
> mean?


I am afraid you will never find what you are looking for in the lexical
and/or syntactical analysis of this text. The question of what this text
"means" is a metaphysical one which must be handled at very high levels of
semantic analysis far far removed from the kind of things we talk about on
b-greek. It is a good question for a different forum.

Asking someone to address this question from the standpoint of EN + Dative
is like listening to a physicist lecture on creation. Both in my mind are a
waste of time. Low level Greek syntax does not encoded metaphysical notions
any more than the rebar in the footings of a house would be considered a
significant aspect of the architecture. Listening to a physicist talk about
creation is like listening to a quarterback from the Seahawks promoting
transcendental meditation.


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

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