[B-Greek] Translating Hebrews 13:4

Elizabeth Kline kline_dekooning at earthlink.net
Fri May 8 14:36:08 EDT 2009


On May 8, 2009, at 10:48 AM, Daniel Buck wrote:

> "timios o gamos en pasin kai h koith amiantos pornous de/gar kai  
> moicous krinei o qeos"
>
> My question is why some translations give the indicative (marriage  
> is honorable in all) and some the imperative (Let marriage be  
> honorable in all). Is it required by the textual reading  
> 'gar' (because), or would it be also possible to translate it as,  
> 'Marriage is honorable in all, because God will judge fornicators  
> and adulterers'?
>
> Daniel Buck

Heb. 13:4 Τίμιος ὁ γάμος ἐν πᾶσιν καὶ ἡ  
κοίτη ἀμίαντος, πόρνους γὰρ καὶ  
μοιχοὺς κρινεῖ ὁ θεός.  5  
Ἀφιλάργυρος ὁ τρόπος, ἀρκούμενοι  
τοῖς παροῦσιν. αὐτὸς γὰρ εἴρηκεν·  
οὐ μή σε ἀνῶ οὐδ᾿ οὐ μή σε  
ἐγκαταλίπω,

HEB. 13:4 TIMIOS hO GAMOS EN PASIN KAI hH KOITH AMIANTOS, PORNOUS GAR  
KAI MOICOUS KRINEI hO QEOS.  5 AFILARGUROS hO TROPOS, ARKOUMENOI TOIS  
PAROUSIN. AUTOS GAR EIRHKEN· OU MH SE ANW OUD᾿ OU MH SE EGKATALIPW,

Contra the Syriac, Chrysostom and some of the Latin Fathers, the  
context is hortatory and the parallel construction in v. 5a  
AFILARGUROS hO TROPOS can hardly be descriptive.


### An exegetical curiousity. Off topic, please limit replies to off  
list.


Many years ago (1975) I heard a very prominent evangelical leader  
propose a reading of this text that was most bizarre. He read both   
TIMIOS hO GAMOS EN PASIN KAI hH KOITH AMIANTOS as indicatives and drew  
the conclusion that whatever took place in the hH KOITH was AMIANTOS.  
This was combined with a prescriptive reading of certain passages from  
Song of Songs. Some recent blog debates over this topic brought this  
to mind. All of this is completely off topic for b-greek.

Elizabeth Kline







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