Christ received life from God at John 1:4 and 5:26 according to Robertson

Gryllus Maior

Active member
Ah, that’s the (lame) excuse. But it doesnt work because it adds words into the text, and betrays this poster’s less than satisfactory grasp of biblical Koine . If Jesus meant to say “so he has granted the Son the power also to have life in himself,” he would have said so. That is not what the Greek of John 5:26 says , hence why no (decent) translation has such a read.

If this poster was right, the Greek would have looked as follows:

οὕτως καὶ τῷ Υἱῷ ἔδωκεν τὴν δύναμιν ἔχειν ζωὴν ἐν ἑαυτῷ

Readers , don’t fall for the smoke & mirrors confidence trickery. The Greek doesn’t allow for his imagined read.

When Scripture wants to say “gave him the power / authority “ to do something, it says so. On this score Rev 13:4 came to my remembrance: καὶ προσεκύνησαν ὅτι ἔδωκεν τὴν ἐξουσίαν τῷ θηρίῳ

ἔδωκεν without the helping words τὴν δύναμιν or τὴν ἐξουσίαν etc. does NOT mean “gave power/authority to..”
Your the one who's Greek is still quite weak. in translation, it's often necessary to add English words to bring out the sense of the Greek.
 

Roger Thornhill

Well-known member
You realize that the first θεός is anarthrous because it's the predicate, right, and has nothing to do with being definite? This "translation" is just wrong.
You were already refuted on that and then left the discussion.


With respect determining the subject of John 1:1c, consider how linguistic scholars determine the subject:

“Levinsohn (1977:20) says of καὶ’s coordinating function, “it unites elements of equal value, weight, or standing. In John’s Gospel particularly, it ties together information into event complexes as in John 1:29 and 41 and adds concluding events, speeches, or incidents… Buth’s view (1991:13) is similar to Levinsohn’s: καὶ has a conjunctive function, joining two or more elements of the same level to each other and indicating continuity with the context, “same situation, same subject matter, same subject or participant.” (Heckert, 1991)

My application of this to John 1:1 is that και the three clauses would naturally have the “same subject.”

Since the Word is the subject of John 1:1a, and continues to be the subject at 1:1b, we would naturally expect the subject to be the Word at 1:1c.

You have argued that the only reason for the anarthrous θεός at 1:1c is merely to identify the subject in the predicate nominative. I don't doubt that in some other passages it might be true, but discourse linguistics gives a grammatical reason why such logic does not apply to John 1:1.

So can you agree that we can identity the subject regardless of the presence of the article at John 1:1c?

The example at John 1:4b proves this.: ...in him was life; and the life was the light of men.
 

The Real John Milton

Well-known member
Your the one who's Greek is still quite weak. in translation, it's often necessary to add English words to bring out the sense of the Greek.

You’re not just adding English words in translation but giving a meaning to ἔδωκεν which it does not have , in order to save your 4th Century doctrine. But what else is new?
 

The Real John Milton

Well-known member
..You have argued that the only reason for the anarthrous θεός at 1:1c is merely to identify the subject in the predicate nominative. I don't doubt that in some other passages it might be true, but discourse linguistics gives a grammatical reason why such logic does not apply to John 1:1.

So can you agree that we can identity the subject regardless of the presence of the article at John 1:1c?

The example at John 1:4b proves this.: ...in him was life; and the life was the light of men.
Yes. Trinitarian scholars themselves disagree with Gryllus on this score. No Trinitarian that I know of argues that the anarthrous θεός at 1:1c is definite. As Wallace says, that is tantamount to Sabellianism.

Also, he does not seem to understand that in the vast majority of cases in S-PN constructions where one substantive is articular and the other anarthrous, the anarthrous substantive is invariably indefinite. This is how such type of a Greek construction naturally falls into place. If the sole purpose of an anarthrous substantive in a S-PN construction is to distinguish it from the S, then we wouldn’t have the following types of constructions, for starters: ἡ ζωὴ ἦν τὸ φῶς τῶν ἀνθρώπων

Gryllus is able to chop & parse admirably till the cows come home, but his practical understanding of the NT Greek grammar is actually quite wanting. That is just my impression.
 

The Real John Milton

Well-known member
This comment by Roger deserves a gold star:
So can you agree that we can identity the subject regardless of the presence of the article at John 1:1c?

The answer to this question is obviously “yes, I can agree.”

If Gryllus’s “rule” was correct, we would never be able to answer “yes” to above question.
 
You realize that the first θεός is anarthrous because it's the predicate, right, and has nothing to do with being definite? This "translation" is just wrong.
You mean the second θεός, right? I’ve seen enough instances of phrases like ἰατρὸς ἦν to know that it means “he was a doctor,” and that it refers to the classification of the subject. The author was trying to classify what the Logos was, it appears to me. Was the Logos a human in the beginning? No. Was it a demon? No. What was it? It was a θεός—and θεός was certainly a countable noun. There were many θεοί, but the term could refer to various things. The Logos wasn’t God himself. If it were God himself, it wouldn’t have been πρὸς τὸν θεόν, which is certainly a reference to God the Eternal (יַהְוֶה).
 
Lol, foot in mouth...John 5:26

<snip>

What's the excuse now ?

I’ve already shown that “to give someone to do something” (that is, διδόναι τινὶ ποιῆσαί τι) has an idiomatic meaning. It doesn’t mean that God gave life to the Logos. It means that God allowed the Logos to itself/himself be a vessel of life, to bring life to other things/people.

Out of curiosity, must I become the subject of ridicule for expressing an opinion that you disagree with? My “excuse”? What kind of puerile speech is this?
 
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ἔδωκεν without the helping words τὴν δύναμιν or τὴν ἐξουσίαν etc. does NOT mean “gave power/authority to..”

To grant someone to do something or to allow them to do it is to give them the power or right to do it. If your child wants to spend the night at their friend’s house and you allow them to go, you have given them the power or right to spend the night with their friends. If you refuse, they do not have the right to go. These are semantics, man. Don’t get stuck on words at the sake of meaning. I don’t care if it is rendered as “he allowed him to have life in himself” or “he granted him to have life in himself,” it means the same thing to me. I won’t get stuck on the words “power” or “right” or “authority.” I’m interested in the meaning of the words, not the words themselves.
 

The Real John Milton

Well-known member
To grant someone to do something or to allow them to do it is to give them the power or right to do it. If your child wants to spend the night at their friend’s house and you allow them to go, you have given them the power or right to spend the night with their friends. If you refuse, they do not have the right to go. These are semantics, man. Don’t get stuck on words at the sake of meaning. I don’t care if it is rendered as “he allowed him to have life in himself” or “he granted him to have life in himself,” it means the same thing to me. I won’t get stuck on the words “power” or “right” or “authority.” I’m interested in the meaning of the words, not the words themselves.

To "give" is to simply put into the possession of another for his or her use. So for instance "Jack gave an apple to his friend." Jack's friend received something which he previously did not possess. The issue of "right to" or "power of / to" can work with the word "give" to give it a different meaning. Your example is not relevant since it is actually playing on the word "allow" and not the word "give." In other words we don't say "I gave / granted my child to spend the night with their friends," but " I gave / granted my child the right to spend the night with their friends." In other words, the words in bold above are the meaning of "allow" and not of "give." The same is true in Koine. Greek has a few words for "allow," like ἐπιτρέπω, ἀφίημι, etc.

By the way, what exactly does "the Father gave the son the right to have eternal life in himself" mean ? Are you trying to say that the son always had eternal life even though it was given to him? Or that at some point in time the Father gave the son power to create eternal life in himself ? I really don't see how that statement even makes any sense ? Roger, do you ? I would like to hear your opinion on this score .
 

Roger Thornhill

Well-known member
I would like to hear your opinion on this score .

What is said in J 5:26 is grammatically linked with what preceded with ώσπερ. So the application of "life in himself" is related to the Son resurrecting. Also, it's not the Father giving life to the Son but "life in himself."

I don't see the same thing at J 1:4. There it's just life.

I also don't see it as merely giving of authority to do something that one already has. For one, it's "life in himself" like the Father has "life in himself."

This starts back at verse 19 and 20 where the Son says he can do nothing "of himself." He says that he sees what the Father does. In verse 20 it's because the Father shows him, makes it known to him.

And then he said the Father will show him greater things in the future.

So by keeping this in mind in 5:26 it's not just granting permission but the giving of the knowledge to enable him to resurrect the dead.
 

The Real John Milton

Well-known member
What is said in J 5:26 is grammatically linked with what preceded with ώσπερ. So the application of "life in himself" is related to the Son resurrecting. Also, it's not the Father giving life to the Son but "life in himself."

I don't see the same thing at J 1:4. There it's just life.

I also don't see it as merely giving of authority to do something that one already has. For one, it's "life in himself" like the Father has "life in himself."

This starts back at verse 19 and 20 where the Son says he can do nothing "of himself." He says that he sees what the Father does. In verse 20 it's because the Father shows him, makes it known to him.

And then he said the Father will show him greater things in the future.

So by keeping this in mind in 5:26 it's not just granting permission but the giving of the knowledge to enable him to resurrect the dead.

I agree that "eternal life" here refers to the life of the resurrected. Christ did not have this "eternal life" in himself, but was given it by his Father about two thousand years ago. So obviously the biblical Christ is not God.
 

The Real John Milton

Well-known member
I’ve already shown that “to give someone to do something” (that is, διδόναι τινὶ ποιῆσαί τι) has an idiomatic meaning. It doesn’t mean that God gave life to the Logos. It means that God allowed the Logos to itself/himself be a vessel of life, to bring life to other things/people.

Out of curiosity, must I become the subject of ridicule for expressing an opinion that you disagree with? My “excuse”? What kind of puerile speech is this?
Maybe not to the pre-flesh "Logos" , but it certainly does mean that God gave life to the Son. Are you seriously denying what the text clearly declares ?

οὕτως καὶ τῷ Υἱῷ ἔδωκεν ζωὴν ἔχειν ἐν ἑαυτῷ.

What part of "He (God) gave to the Son eternal life " from above is not clear ?
 
Are you seriously denying what the text clearly declares ? [sic, declares?]
I don’t believe I am. It doesn’t say τῷ υἱῷ ἔδωκεν ζωὴν “he gave the son life.” It attaches an infinitive to it, which changes the meaning of διδόναι. It reads τῷ υἱῷ ἔδωκεν ζωὴν ἔχειν ἐν ἑαυτῷ “he allowed/permitted/authorized the son to have life in himself.”

What part of "He (God) gave to the Son eternal life " [sic, life"] from above is not clear ? [sic, clear?]
The part where it goes on and has an infinitive after it. You’re not translating the whole phrase. It’s not so much unclear as it is poorly translated.
 
By the way, what exactly does "the Father gave the son the right to have eternal life in himself" mean ? Are you trying to say that the son always had eternal life even though it was given to him? Or that at some point in time the Father gave the son power to create eternal life in himself ? I really don't see how that statement even makes any sense ? Roger, do you ? I would like to hear your opinion on this score .
It’s one thing to say that God gave life to the son. That means that the son wasn’t alive and that God brought him to life. It is another thing to say that God granted that the son would have life in himself. This means that the son would become a source of life for others. Up to that point, only God was considered to be the source of life. It was because of this “letting” him have life in himself that Jesus was able to declare Ἐγώ εἰμι ἡ ἀνάστασις καὶ ἡ ζωή (John 11:25).
 
To "give" is to simply put into the possession of another for his or her use. So for instance "Jack gave an apple to his friend." Jack's friend received something which he previously did not possess.
I’m glad you understand what “give” means in English. We’re talking, however, about how διδόναι (i.e., δίδωμι) is used in Greek. You might try dealing with Greek and not placing so much value upon how words are used in English.
 

Roger Thornhill

Well-known member
I don’t believe I am. It doesn’t say τῷ υἱῷ ἔδωκεν ζωὴν “he gave the son life.” It attaches an infinitive to it, which changes the meaning of διδόναι. It reads τῷ υἱῷ ἔδωκεν ζωὴν ἔχειν ἐν ἑαυτῷ “he allowed/permitted/authorized the son to have life in himself.”

As I posted earlier, J 5:26 is part of the discourse where Jesus illustrates what he means by not being able to do something ἀφ’ ἑαυτοῦ (of himself) at 5:19. He says that the Father shows him and then he does what he saw the Father do (5:20).

The word δείκνυμι rendered "show" at 5:20 is said in BDAG to be: Of divine revelation (Hermes fgm. XXIII, 5 [Stob. I 386, 22 W.=458, 20 Sc.; PGM 3, 599]) J 5:20.

So this ability to resurrect (life in himself) is the result of being given "divine revelation" which arguably includes giving authority as well but is more than that.



The part where it goes on and has an infinitive after it. You’re not translating the whole phrase. It’s not so much unclear as it is poorly translated.
 
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Roger Thornhill

Well-known member
Roger,

I see now that you’re not referring to his grammar but to Word Pictures and that the verse that he used was John 5:26 (τῷ υἱῷ ἔδωκεν ζωὴν ἔχειν ἐν ἑαυτῷ “[God] gave [his] son to have life in himself”), not John 1:4 (ὃ γέγονεν ἐν αὐτῷ ζωὴ ἦν “What has come into being in him was life”). That makes a bit of a difference to the discussion.

In a context such as this, δίδωμί τινι ποιῆσαί τι would mean “to allow someone to do something” or “to give someone the power/right to do something.” It doesn’t really mean “to give” or “to cause to have.” This use is covered by BDAG here:

to grant by formal action, grant, allow, freq. of God (cp. 7 above) ἐξουσίαν δ. (Hippol., Ref. 5, 26, 21 grant someone the power or authority, give someone the right, etc. (cp. TestJob 20:3; Jos., Ant. 2, 90, Vi. 71) Mt 9:8; 28:18; 2 Cor 13:10; Rv 9:3; 1 Cl 61:1; τοῦ πατεῖν ἐπάνω τινός tread on someth. Lk 10:19. τὴν σοφίαν τοῦ γράψαι τὴν ἱστορίαν ταύτην the ability to write this account GJs 25:1. ἔδωκεν αὐτοῖς δύναμιν καὶ ἐξουσίαν ἐπί Lk 9:1 (cp. Just., D. 30, 3 ἔδωκεν αὐτῷ δύναμιν). ταῦτά σοι πάντα δώσω i.e. put them under your control Mt 4:9 of the devil. Simple δ. w. inf. (Appian, Liby. 19 §78 ἢν [=ἐὰν] ὁ θεὸς δῷ ἐπικρατῆσαι 106 §499) δέδοται it is given, granted to someone γνῶναι τὰ μυστήρια to know the secrets Mt 13:11; cp. ἡ δοθεῖσα αὐτῷ γνῶσις B 9:8 (Just., D. 7, 3 εἰ μή τῳ θεός δῷ συνιέναι) ἔδωκεν ζωὴν ἔχειν he has granted (the privilege) of having life J 5:26. μετὰ παρρησίας λαλεῖν to speak courageously Ac 4:29 and oft. rather freq. the inf. is to be supplied fr. the context (Himerius, Or. 38 [4], 8 εἰ θεὸς διδοίη=if God permits) οἷς δέδοται sc. χωρεῖν Mt 19:11. ἦν δεδομένον σοι sc. ἐξουσίαν ἔχειν J 19:11. W. acc. and inf. foll. (Appian, Mithrid. 11, §37; Heliodorus 5, 12, 2 δώσεις με πιστεύειν) οὐδὲ δώσεις τὸν ὅσιόν σου ἰδεῖν διαφθοράν you will not permit your holy one to see corruption Ac 2:27; 13:35 (both Ps 15:10). ἔδωκεν αὐτὸν ἐμφανῆ γενέσθαι granted that he should be plainly seen 10:40. δὸς … ῥαγήναι τὰ δέσμα grant that our chains be broken AcPl Ha 3,11f. Pregnant constr.: grant, order (Diod S 9, 12, 2 διδ. λαβεῖν=permit to; 19, 85, 3 τὶ=someth.; Appian, Bell. Civ. 4, 125 §524 ὁ καιρὸς ἐδίδου=the opportunity permitted; Biogr. p. 130 ἐδίδου θάπτειν τ. ἄνδρα) ἐδόθη αὐτοῖς ἵνα μὴ ἀποκτείνωσιν orders were given them not to kill Rv 9:5; cp. 19:8.—Of an oath w. double inf. Lk 1:73f. S. also 17 below.

Entry for δίδωμι in William Arndt et al., A Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament and Other Early Christian Literature (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2000), 243.

Notice the text in red above, along with the complete section of the entry.
Acts 4:29, given right after J 5:26 is not merely authority to speak with boldness, but from verse 31 it is evident that they did this by the power of the Holy Spirit that he gave them.
 
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