[B-Greek] John 17:24 hO and KAKEINOI

George F Somsel gfsomsel at yahoo.com
Sun Jul 18 13:45:53 EDT 2010

Most commentators understand this distinction as considering the disciples as a 
whole in one case and as individuals in the other.  So Alford, Westcott, 
Brown.   Roberton notes:
(b) The Neuter Singular. This is not always to be regarded as a breach of 
gender. Often the neuter conveys a different conception. So in the question of 

Robertson, A.T. A Grammar of the Greek New Testament in the Light of Historical 
Research, p. 411. Logos, 1919; 2006.


… search for truth, hear truth, 
learn truth, love truth, speak the truth, hold the truth, 
defend the truth till death.

- Jan Hus

From: Marilyn Phemister <windmill65 at yahoo.com>
To: B-Greek <B-Greek at lists.ibiblio.org>
Sent: Sun, July 18, 2010 8:21:20 AM
Subject: [B-Greek] John 17:24 hO and KAKEINOI


Here I am with another question.

In John 17:24 we have:

Πάτερ, ὃ δέδωκας μοι, θέλω ἵνα ὅπου εἰμὶ ἐγὼ κακεῖνοι ὦσιν μετ̓ ἐμοῦ,

Why does John use a neuter singular pronoun hO and then refer back to it with a 
masculine plural demonstrative KAKEIVOI?  Shouldn't the two agree in gender and 
number?  Is there a rule here I am missing?  Is it possible that ὃ hO 
represented a collective neuter noun such as ποιμνιον POMNION, and KAKEINOI the 
members of that group? 

Thank you,

Marilyn Phemister

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τί ἐστιν ἀλήθεια; (Jo. 18:38). Cf. also τί οὖν ὁ νόμος; (Gal. 3:19), τί ἐστιν 
ἄνθρωπος; (Heb. 2:6), τί ἂν εἴη ταῦτα; (Lu. 15:26), εἰ δοκεῖ τις εἶναί τι μηδὲν 
ὤν; (Gal. 6:3). But on the other hand note εἶναί τινα(Ac. 5:36), αὕτη ἐστὶν ἡ 
μεγάλη ἐντολή(Mt. 22:38), τίς ἡ πρόσλημψις; (Ro. 11:15), τίς ἐστιν ἡ ἐλπίς; 
(Eph. 1:18). In particular observe τί ὁ Πέτρος ἐγένετο(Ac. 12:18) and οὗτος δὲ 
τί(Jo. 21:21). Cf. also τοῦτο χάρις(twice) in 1 Pet. 2:19 f., where τοῦτοis 
predicate and really refers to εἰ ὑποφέρει τιςand εἰ ὑπομενεῖτε. Cf. also ἡ ψυχὴ 
πλεῖόν ἐστιν τῆς τροφῆς(Lu. 12:23). Indeed τοῦταmay be the predicate with 
persons, as ταῦτά τινες ἦτε(1 Cor. 6:11). The neuter adjective in the predicate 
is perfectly normal in cases like ἱκανὸν τῷ τοιούτῳ ἡ ἐπιτιμία αὕτη(2 Cor. 2:6). 
So also ἀρκετὸν τῇ ἡμέρᾳ ἡ κακία αὐτῆς(Mt. 6:34). Cf. also the reading of D 
ἀρεστόνin Ac. 12:3. Blass treats ἀρκετόνabove and ἱκονόν ἐστινin Lu. 22:38 as 
like the Latin satis. The neuter singular in the collective or general sense to 
represent persons is not peculiar to the N. T. So τὸ κατέχον(2 Th. 2:6), πᾶν 
ὅ(Jo. 17:2), τὸ ἀπολωλός(Lu. 19:10), etc. So the neuter plural also as τὰ μωρὰ 
τοῦ κόσμου, τὰ ἀσθενῆ(1 Cor. 1:27). The neuter article τὸ Ἅγαρ(Gal. 4:25) deals 
with the word Hagar, not the gender of the person. In Jas. 4:4 μοιχαλίδεςin W. 
H. stands without μοιχαλοὶ καί, but none the less may be regarded as 
comprehensive. Cf. γενεὰ μοιχαλίς(Mt. 12:39) and Hos. 2:4, 23. In 1 Cor. 15:10 
note εἰμὶ ὅ εἰμι, not ὅς, a different idea. 


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