[B-Greek] Help with Hebrews 4:2

Carl Conrad cwconrad2 at mac.com
Sat May 2 18:34:42 EDT 2009

I would like to think that my "rule" is a bit more nuanced than it is  
represented in this accounting. In particular there's a  
misunderstanding about the passive in what Mark states:  while the QH  
passive is a secondary development in Greek morphology, the middle- 
passive forms of appropriate verbs -- especially strongly transitive  
verbs that take direct objects -- could always be interpreted as  
having passive meaning. The question with regard to SUGKEKERASMENOUS  
in our passage is whether we can readily conceive some external agent  
who brings about the "mingling" indicated by the verb; we'd have to  
assume a sense for SUGKEKRASMENOUS such as "because they were not made  
to share ... " I think that's rather awkward and it seems to me that  
the failure of the gospel message with EKEINOUS is a failure to which  
"those persons" somehow contributed: "because they did not share ... "

All of this has been under discussion on this list previously. What  
I've thought and written about the problems here before can be found  
in the 2003 archives: (September 26, 2003) under the subject header,  
"Re: [B-Greek] Two datives in Heb. 4:2" at
= http://tinyurl.com/6ck7yw

Carl W. Conrad
Department of Classics, Washington University (Retired)

On May 2, 2009, at 5:52 PM, Mark Lightman wrote:

> Alan,
> This is a good quesiton, I hope the first of many from you.
> This is an instance where I would apply the "Conrad rule of
> medio-passivity" which states that if a verb CAN be construed
> as a middle, if should be, or, unless a verb HAS to be construed
> as a passive, it should be construed as a middle.  I think the basis
> of the Conrad rule is that the passive is a later development from
> the middle.  Not that there is any thing wrong with taking
> SUGKEKERASMENOUS as a passive.  The Conrad rule is a
> rule, not a commandment.
> Mark L.
> --- On Sat, 5/2/09, Alan Martin <martinv at fredericktown.k12.mo.us>  
> wrote:
> From: Alan Martin <martinv at fredericktown.k12.mo.us>
> Subject: [B-Greek] Help with Hebrews 4:2
> To: b-greek at lists.ibiblio.org
> Date: Saturday, May 2, 2009, 10:16 AM
> This is my first posted question.  I am grateful for this resource.
> My question regards the Perfect Participle translated "having been  
> mixed
> together".
> I noticed that it is a masculine, accusative, plural, probably  
> modifying
> the demonstrative pronoun ekeinous.  My question is how does the  
> perfect
> participle make sense translated as a passive voice rather than a
> middle.  It seems to me that a middle voice makes more sense, but I am
> still unsure.
> Thank you ahead of time for your help.  I am still very far from
> advanced in my study, I am simply a pastor seeking to rightly divide  
> the
> word of truth.
> AM

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