Mt 18:3 double negative??!?

Jim West jwest at
Wed May 8 18:09:21 EDT 2002

At 05:23 PM 5/8/02 -0400, you wrote:
>How should we understand the strong double negative: hO MH
> which Jesus used in such passages such as Mt 18:3?  I'm preaching on this
>section in a month, and I've discovered this device more than once in the
>NT....could we say "not not"?  There has to be a way to describe it to the
>congregation which surpasses the typical "never" translation....thanks for
>the help!

perhaps a dynamic equivalent like "hell no" which in english carries
essentially the same force as the double negative in koine.

that said- i doubt a congregation would be too awfully thrilled with such a
rendering - so maybe you could offer them the much softened "may it NEVER
be" or some such.




Jim West, ThD
Adjunct Professor of Biblical Studies
Quartz Hill School of Theology

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