[B-Greek] Mark 8:12 EI clause
Jeffrey B. Gibson
jgibson000 at comcast.net
Sat Mar 18 12:56:01 EST 2006
Bert de Haan wrote:
> Mark 8:12 -> KAI ANASTENAXAS TWi PREUMATI AUTOU LEGEI, TI hH GENEA hAUTH
> ZHTEI SHMEION; AMHN LEGW hUMIN, EI DOQHSETAI THi GENEA TAUTHi SHMEION.
> My question is concerning the last part of this verse where, instead of a
> negative, only EI is used. ... if a sign will be given to this generation.
> Is this comparable to our ;As if> This generation will receive a sign, yea
> right, as if.
> Or is this a standard way to express a negative?
The latter. The phrase EI DOQESETAI in Mk 8.12c is a literal rendering of a
typical Hebrew oath formula of adjuration which was in use in Palestine in
Jesus' day as a recognized way of saying `no' forcefully. See Ps. 95 which on
analogy with 2 Kings 6:31 may be filled out as `May I die' or `may God curse me
See too G.W. Buchanan, `Some Vow and Oath Formulas in the New Testament', HTR 58
(1965), pp. 319-26, esp. pp. 324-25.
Jeffrey B. Gibson, D.Phil. (Oxon)
1500 W. Pratt Blvd.
e-mail jgibson000 at comcast.net
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