[B-Greek] Jam 1:13 APEIRASTOS 'unable to' or 'unable to be ~'

Carlton Winbery winberycl at earthlink.net
Wed Jul 4 22:21:27 EDT 2007

>  >
>>  On 7/4/07, Jeffrey B. Gibson <jgibson000 at comcast.net> wrote:
>>   Oun Kwon wrote:
>>   > Why!  In Source, Ann Nyland gives an example of extra-biblical source
>>   > for this rare word, where it reads 'who puts no one through an
>>   > ordeal', the way I like to understand in the text of  James.
>>   >
>>   I'm not sure this solves any problems.  Indeed, it creates one --  for it
>>   is clear in the Hebrew Bible/LXX that God **does** put people through
>>   ordeals (cf. e.g.., Gen. 22; Deut 6-8).
>>   Jeffrey
>James states that God does not put us through ordeals.  I think it has
>to do with 'by evil means' in the preceding clause.
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I find the entry in BDAG to be compelling for the use in James in the 
passive sense. Literally "God is untempted by evil."
aÓpei÷rastoß , on (s. peira¿zw; Philod., Rhet. I p. 45, 3 Sudh.; 
Empirikerschule p. 91, 18 KDeichgräber [1930]; Galen: CMG V 4, 1, 1 
p. 62, 30; Alciphron 2, 35, 3 Sch. after Cobet; Jos., Bell. 5, 364 
and 7, 262 codd.) for the older aÓpei÷ratoß (Pind. et al.) without 
temptation, either active = who does not tempt, or passive = who 
cannot be tempted. Of God oJ qeo\ß aÓ. e™stin kakw×n Js 1:13, 
certainly pass. because de÷ in the next clause introduces a new 
thought, God cannot be tempted to do evil (Leontios 8 p. 17, 3 of God 
as One who cannot and dare not be tempted [cp. Eur., Bellerophon TGF 
292, 7 ei™ qeoi÷ ti drw×sin ai™scro/n, oujk ei™si«n qeoi÷=if gods do 
someth. shameful, they can't be gods]; for the gen. kakw×n cp. X., 
Cyr. 3, 3, 55 aÓpai÷deutoß aÓrethvß, and s. B-D-F §182, 3; Rob. 516). 
Of humans aÓnh\r aÓdo/kimoß aÓpei÷rastoß (para» qew×– is added by 
Const. Apost. 2, 8, 2) an untempted man is untried Agr 21.-DELG s.v. 
peiˆra. M-M. TW.

Carlton L. Winbery
Retired Professor of Religion
Louisiana College
winberycl at earthlink.net

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