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Analysis of 1 John 1:1-4

PostPosted: Sun Aug 04, 2013 4:58 am
by Isaac Newton
My favourite book . It's a very holy letter and deserves the utmost care and respect in exegesis IMHO. Just reading it (original Greek or English ) gives one peace of mind.

Here is verse one :

Ὃ ἦν ἀπ’ ἀρχῆς, ὃ ἀκηκόαμεν, ὁ ἑωράκαμεν τοῖς ὀφθαλμοῖς ἡμῶν, ὃ ἐθεασάμεθα καὶ αἱ χεῖρες ἡμῶν ἐψηλάφησαν περὶ τοῦ λόγου τῆς ζωῆς—.


I'm looking at the prepositional phrase at the end of verse 1 and have come to the conclusion that ζωῆς is an epexegeical genitive, so that it is "oppositional" to λόγου. Thus the correct translation here of bold above is " [I am] referring to the word, that is, the life."

Also at the end of verse 3 I see another epexegetical genitive:

ὃ— ἑωράκαμεν καὶ ἀκηκόαμεν, ἀπαγγέλλομεν καὶ ὑμῖν, ἵνα καὶ ὑμεῖς κοινωνίαν ἔχητε μεθ’ ἡμῶν. καὶ ἡ κοινωνία δὲ ἡ ἡμετέρα μετὰ τοῦ πατρὸς καὶ μετὰ τοῦ υἱοῦ αὐτοῦ Ἰησοῦ Χριστοῦ.


So above (in bold) is to be translated "with his son, that is, Jesus Christ."


Let's dissect..

Re: Analysis of 1 John 1:1-4

PostPosted: Mon Aug 05, 2013 12:54 am
by uberdwayne
Its interesting to see this as an epexegetical Genetive. It makes the Message, life. Which, in a very real sense it is life to those who except it.

It is however a bit ambiguous, because the preposition requires the genitive, so grammar alone, we can't tell if the second Genitive is there because its epexigetical or because it modifies του λογου, which might have been a different case if it wasn't for "περι".

I would almost see this as a genitive of content based on the words themselves. Perhaps a more expanded translation may be "the word which contains life" or even "the message which contains life."

What convinces you that epexegetical genetive is more likely?

Re: Analysis of 1 John 1:1-4

PostPosted: Mon Aug 05, 2013 8:55 am
by Isaac Newton
uberdwayne wrote:Its interesting to see this as an epexegetical Genetive. It makes the Message, life. Which, in a very real sense it is life to those who except it.

It is however a bit ambiguous, because the preposition requires the genitive, so grammar alone, we can't tell if the second Genitive is there because its epexigetical or because it modifies του λογου, which might have been a different case if it wasn't for "περι".

I would almost see this as a genitive of content based on the words themselves. Perhaps a more expanded translation may be "the word which contains life" or even "the message which contains life."


True.

What convinces you that epexegetical genetive is more likely?


Because "the logos of life" is a sort of a meaningless epithet.