1 Corinthians 7:15

Polycarp66 at aol.com Polycarp66 at aol.com
Sun Jan 6 19:14:52 EST 2002

In a message dated 1/6/2002 6:13:57 PM Eastern Standard Time, 
fconley at airmail.net writes:

> However, I understand CHWRIZESQW to be a third person singular present
> passive imperative. Three questions for the grammarians: (1) Isn't it
> misleading for translations to imply that this is a second person when it 
> is
> not? (2) Would it not be more in harmony with the grammar to render
> something like: "Divorce it must be"; or, "it is permitted." See: "They may
> separate"(JB); "it is permitted"(LB); or, as I think Moulton in his
> Prolegomena implies, p. 172, "If the partner insists on divorce, divorce it
> must be." (3) Is this possibly a case of the divine passive?

I think the problem here is trying to understand the grammar from the 
perspective of the English language (perhaps others as well).  In English we 
associate the imperative with a command, "Do this." We don't understand "Let 
this be done" as an imperative.  Moreover, as you indicated "you" is 
understood as the subject of such a construction. I would say, however that 
such constructions as "divorce it must be" are awkward and unEnglish at best. 
 In Latin I believe the statement, "let him . . . " would  be considered a 
jussive (my Latin is extremely rusty, perhaps someone more knowledgeable can 
speak to this).  I think this is about the best we can do in English.

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