[B-Greek] POSTSCRIPT Question on I Timothy 2:1 (also I Timothy 2:9)
bluemeeksbay at yahoo.com
Sat Aug 7 15:30:27 EDT 2010
This is interesting. I just came across this from Chrysostom, Homily VI, I
Timothy ii. 1-4. *...what is "first of all"? It means in the daily Service; and
the initiated know this is done every day both in the evening and the morning,
how we offer prayers for the whole world, for kings and all that are in
I do not have the Greek Text handy but I am sure he is referring to PRWTON. I
know that he may have been influenced by tradition, but it is interesting that
one Greek speaking person apparenty did not understand PRWTON as modifying
PARAKALW, at least when considering the greater context.
From: Blue Meeksbay <bluemeeksbay at yahoo.com>
To: b-greek at lists.ibiblio.org
Sent: Sat, August 7, 2010 7:42:13 AM
Subject: [B-Greek] Question on I Timothy 2:1 (also I Timothy 2:9)
PARAKALW OUN PRWTON PANTWN POIEISQAI DEHSEIS PROSEUCAS ENTEUXEIS EUCARISTIAS
hUPER PANTWN ANQRWPWN. 1 TIMOTHY 2:1
In considering the verse above, I was wondering what a first century Greek
reader (or hearer) would naturally think the writer of I Timothy meant by the
verse quoted above.
Would he think he is mentioning the first thing he exhorts Timothy to do, or
would he think he is mentioning the first thing he wants the church to do in
their gathering together. In other words, which word is PRWTONmodifying –
Should we understand it as, for example, as the NASB does, where PRWTONmodifies
PARAKALW – *First of all, then, I urge that entreaties and prayers, petitions
and thanksgivings, be made on behalf of all men.* Or should it be understood as
PRWTONmodifying POIEISQAI so that it would be understood something like this –
*I therefore exhort, that first of all, entreaties and prayers, petitions and
thanksgivings, be made in behalf of all men.*
I cannot find any pattern in the GNT that might help us. Sometimes PRWTONis
before the word it modifies as it does in Rom. 1:8.
PRWTON MEN EUCARISTW TWi QEWi MOU DIA IHSOU CRISTOU PERI PANTWN hUMWN hOTI hH
PISTIS hUMWN KATAGGELLETAI EN hOLWi TWi KOSMWi.
Sometimes it is after the word it modifies as in John 1:41
hEURISKEI hOUTOS PRWTON TON ADELFON TON IDION SIMWNA KAI LEGEI AUTWi• hEURHKAMEN
TON MESSIAN, hO ESTIN MEQERMHNEUOMENON CRISTOS.
And sometimes it seems it can go either way.
LUKE 9:59 EIPEN DE PROS hETERON• AKOLOUQEI MOI. hO DE EIPEN• [KURIE,] EPITREYON
MOI APELQONTI PRWTON QAYAI TON PATERA MOU.
(It seems this verse could be understood as – first permit me to go and bury my
father, or, permit me to go and first bury my father.)
Does anyone who is well read in classic Greek texts or extra biblical Greek
texts know of any patterns that might help us – maybe patterns of PRWTON used
with verbs of exhortation?
Perhaps we can never know for sure since the answer might only be known by
where the reader of the epistle paused. In other words, if the reader cried out
* PARAKALW OUN* and then paused before continuing the hearer would know PRWTON
PANTWN belongs with POIEISQAI. Conversely, if the reader cried out * PARAKALW
OUN PRWTON PANTWN *, and then paused, the hearer would know it belonged with
However, since we cannot avail ourselves of that, it seems the only thing we are
left with is context, and if we take the context, it seems Paul is saying this
is one of the first things he desires the church to do when it comes together in
assembly. He first deals with the public prayers of both men and women (vs.
1-10) and then moves into the teaching aspect (vs. 11-15) of the church
gathering. (I believe WSAUTWS in verse 9 should be seen as referring back to
BOULOMAI and also PROSEUCESQAI in verse 8, so that Paul is saying – *In like
manner I desire the women to pray in proper attire, with modesty and
discreteness – to adorn themselves, not with braided hair and gold, or pearls or
expensive clothing, but with good works, (which is appropriate to women
It seems the context is saying that prayer is based upon two things – 1) with
men it is based upon sanctification (holy hands) and 2) with women it is based
upon lives of charity (good works). (Perhaps, because of Jam. 5: 16b ).
Therefore, the context seems to refer to the public worship of the church and
not to the first thing he exhorts Timothy to do. Besides the first exhortation
to Timothy was given to him in I Tim. 1:3, not 2:1.
P.S. Does anyone also believe that WSAUTWS in I Tim. 2:9 should include
PROSEUCESQAI of verse 8? It seems a similar passage would be Luke 22:19-20,
where it seems the hWSAUTWS of verse 20 should not only include LABWN but also
EUCARISTHSAS, so that the verse should read, *And in like manner, after supper
[he took] the cup, [and gave thanks] saying, etc.*
LUKE 22:19 KAI LABWN ARTON EUCARISTHSAS EKLASEN KAI EDWKEN AUTOIS LEGWN• TOUTO
ESTIN TO SWMA MOU TO hUPER hUMWN DIDOMENON• TOUTO POIEITE EIS THN EMHN
LUKE 22:20 KAI TO POTHRION hWSAUTWS META TO DEIPNHSAI, LEGWN• TOUTO TO POTHRION
hH KAINH DIAQHKH EN TWi hAIMATI MOU TO hUPER hUMWN EKCUNNOMENON.
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