Galatians 2:16 EAN MH
moon at sogang.ac.kr
Fri Mar 29 22:10:01 EST 2002
The original question of this thread was rather purely stated, but
the question comes down to this:
(1) Does EAN MH DIA PISTEWS IHSOU CRISTOU modify the whole preceding
clause OU DIKAIOUTAI ANQRWPOS EX ERGWN NOMOU, or
(2) only OU DIKAIOUTAI ANQRWPOS.
This question assumes that EAN MH should be understood to mean "If not"
or "unless". Another approach adopted in many versions is to understand it
to mean "but".
One way to argue the position of (2) in the first approach is to make EAN
MH DIA PISTEWS IHSOU CRISTOU a sort of apposition to EX ERGWN NOMOU.
Man is not justified by works of the law, that is, unless through faith of
There are other instances like this. E.g. John 15:4:
A branch cannot bear fruit BY ITSELF, that is, unless (EAH MH) it abides
in the vine.
The son cannot do anything by himself, that is, unless he sees the Father
I operate within the first approach, because I do not know of
clear instances where EAN MH should be understood to mean ALLA.
Moon R. Jung
Sogang Univ, Seoul, Korea
> >From: "Michael Abernathy" <mabernat at cub.kcnet.org>
> >Date: Fri, 29 Mar 2002 11:16:39 -0800
> >EIDOTES hOTI OU DIKAIOUTAI ANQRWPOS EX ERGWN NOMOU EAN MH DIA PISTEWS
> >In another forum we have been discussing whether EAN MH should be
> >as adversative or exceptive. What does EAN MH modify in Galatians 2:16 OU
> >DIKAIOUTAI ANQRWPOS or EX ERGWN NOMOU?
> I assume you mean what does the clause under the scope of EAN MH modify?
> EAN is a subordinating conjunction governing a clause, in this case, an
> elliptical clause:
> EAN MH [ DIKAIOUTAI] DIA PISTEWS IHSOU CRISTOU,
> and ISTM that what a subordinate clause modifies is the entire matrix
> clause, and not merely one of its constituents: thus, it modifies
> OU DIKAIOUTAI ANQRWPOS EX ERGWN NOMWN.
> Manolis Nikolaou wrote:
> >The confusion in this case is apparently due to the double function of OU
> >DIKAIOUTAI ANQRWPOS:
> >OU DIKAIOUTAI ANQRWPOS EX ERGWN NOMWN.
> >OU DIKAIOUTAI ANQRWPOS EAN MH DIA PISTEWS IHSOU CRISTOU.
> >I guess either EX ERGWN NOMWN should have been omitted, or EAN MH should
> >have been replaced by some more appropriate word (e.g. ALLA).
> Should it have been? ISTM that both of these renditions say something
> different from what the text actually says. Also, either omitting EX ERGWN
> NOMOU or changing EAN MH to ALLA makes the text say something different than
> what it does, while the meaning as it stands seems quite straightforward . .
> . "A man will not be justified by the works of the law unless it is on the
> basis of faith in Christ." Now, we might would rather it say what it would
> say with ALLA than with EAN MH, but is that any reason for assuming the
> former is what Paul meant to say?
> But now to jump to your side of the argument, Manolis, the context of this
> chapter does seem to be saying what verse 16 would say with ALLA rather than
> what it seems to say with EAN MH, and certainly in light of Ephesians 2.9,
> one would expect to see ALLA rather than EAN MH here. So should I conclude
> that EAN MH and ALLA share a logical structure in Greek in a way that "but"
> and "if not" do not in English? Or did Paul choose EAN MH instead of ALLA
> for some type of rhetorical effect? Or?
> glenn blank
> Pensacola FL
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