Gal 4:18 EN KALWi

Harry W. Jones hjbluebird at
Tue Oct 9 05:09:22 EDT 2001

Dear Diana,

I could find no place in the NT Greek where either KALOS or AGAQOS are
used as a substantive for a person. They seem to always be used as a 
quality or characteristic.

Harry Jones

> While I'm interrupting with questions, there was one awhile back I couldn't
> answer for myself.  There is no article in the phrase "EN KALWi" here, so it
> could be masculine, as well as neuter.  The context in Galatians would
> certainly support a reference to human agency, rather than neuter
> instrumentality.  And BDF allows EN + (dative/instrumental) to be used for
> personal agency.   Why, then, is this phrase translated (by all versions
> I've checked) as "in a good cause," rather than "by a good person"?  Is
> there a reason in Greek grammar; or is it merely that translators feel Paul
> would not refer to himself as "good" or imply the opposite of other
> Christians, personally, by contrast, even though he has been forcefully
> saying these other Christians' suborning of doctrinal felonies among the
> Galatians was quite bad?    (Rats!  Parse that sentence!)
> [Dictionaries I checked may have leaned toward the (non-personal)
> instrumental as more usual for such phrases, but not totally clear.  Both
> allowed.]
> Diana N. Shaw
> dinosaur2 at

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