1 Cor. 2:15

Chuck Tripp ctripp at ptialaska.net
Fri Mar 22 23:35:09 EST 2002

A year ago, I read through 1 Corinthinans and this passage caught my
attention and subsequently during last summer, I did a sunday school class
with our high school students on 1 Corinthians.  Part of the exercise was to
teach the kids how to use the various tools (concordances, lexicons, etc)
available to try to sort out what a passage is saying.   This passage 1 Cor.
2.15 is one we spent  a little time on.

Here is an excerpt from my sunday school notes:

- Anyone have any ideas how to interpret 2:14 and 15?  What does it mean to
say someone is 'discerned?'  Is that an insult?

- In light of the words study, suggest alternate wording to clarify passage.
Substitute the word 'judged.'

None of us, really could really figure out what was being said at first.  It
is one of those passages that you've heard many times, read a number of
times but what does it mean?

The students in that class found that the same word, ANAKRINW, appears 3
times in the end of verse. 14 and 15, which was not obvious at all with the
translation we were using.  We looked up  ANAKRINW as well as the root,
KRINW.  We discussed the possibility that Paul is doing a play on words here
that is not obvious in a transation, twice in the passive and once in the
active.  We tried substituting different alternate words or phrases which
would accurately convey the meaning of ANAKRINW  and KRINW its root.  As you
can see from the above notes excerpt, we tried subsituting the word 'judge'
since that is present in the greek word but absent from the english words
used in that passage.

This is a long way to suggest that you try adding a little more emphasis to
the 'KRINW' component of ANAKRINW as you try to sort this out.

I am still not sure what it means, and am open to suggestions.  But maybe
there is an eschatalogical dimension to the passage as in the spiritual will
judge the world, but will not be judged by the world.  In the previous
verse, the YUXIKOS ANQROPOS...PNEUMATIKWS ANAKRINETAI, could that mean that
the     YUXIKOS is spiritually condemned?  Carry that meaning into verse 15.
The spiritual condemns/judges all but in not condemned/judged.

That was kind of our tentative hypothetical discussion from last year on
this passage.  I would welcome any thoughts others might have on this.  It
still puzzles me.

Chuck Tripp
Kodiak, Alaska
----- Original Message -----
From: Mark Wilson <emory2oo2 at hotmail.com>
To: Biblical Greek <b-greek at franklin.metalab.unc.edu>
Sent: Thursday, March 21, 2002 4:59 PM
Subject: [b-greek] 1 Cor. 2:15

> "The one who is spiritual understands/discerns all things, yet he himself
> understood/discerned by no one"
> To which one commentary suggests:
> the person without the S/spirit can not
> understand the person with the S/spirit.
> The last part of this is what is troubling me.
> In what sense is this person understood/discerned by NO ONE?
> I can see that a person without the Spirit would not be
> capable of understanding him on matters related to spiritual things,
> but those with the Spirit certainly would be able to understand him.
> How is it that he is understood by no one? Most seem to supply
> a missing modifier, as in: by no one (among the YUCIKOS ANQRWPOI).
> Any help would be appreciated
> Mark Wilson
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