The linguistic subject of John 20:28

The Real John Milton

Well-known member
I think too much of the discussion involving TSKS and TSKTS constructions revolves around the number of "persons" involved, the ultimate aim being to argue for or against the divinity of Jesus. How many people are in view here: εἰ οὖν ἐγὼ ἔνιψα ὑμῶν τοὺς πόδας ὁ κύριος καὶ ὁ διδάσκαλος, καὶ ὑμεῖς ὀφείλετε ἀλλήλων νίπτειν τοὺς πόδας? Why must John 20:28 be any different?

ὁ διδάσκαλος is a proper name (only ever applied to Jesus) , so this is not a valid example :

The papyri were seen, then, to be very much in step with the classical authors and the NT. Further, when a writer wanted to distinguish individuals—and there were scores of instances in which distinct individuals were in view—he or she invariably used a second article (TSKTS)—except, of course, when a proper name was involved.
 

The Real John Milton

Well-known member
I've already answered you on this matter. There is no need to understand a finite verb here. The utterance can stand on its own and be understood as a direct address/appellative or an exclamation. The entire utterance is compound grammatical subject (κύριός and θεός with modifiers), and the logical subject is Jesus.

Someone being God and not-God (i.e. man) simultaneously would hardly make for a "logical" subject. The "logical" identity of ὁ Θεός in John 20:28 is the Father living in Jesus. Recall the last conversation Jesus had with apostle Thomas and another disciple in John 14 --


λέγει αὐτῷ ὁ Ἰησοῦς Τοσοῦτον χρόνον μεθ’ ὑμῶν εἰμι καὶ οὐκ ἔγνωκάς με, Φίλιππε; ὁ ἑωρακὼς ἐμὲ ἑώρακεν τὸν Πατέρα· πῶς σὺ λέγεις Δεῖξον ἡμῖν τὸν Πατέρα;οὐ πιστεύεις ὅτι ἐγὼ ἐν τῷ Πατρὶ καὶ ὁ Πατὴρ ἐν ἐμοί ἐστιν; τὰ ῥήματα ἃ ἐγὼ λέγω ὑμῖν ἀπ’ ἐμαυτοῦ οὐ λαλῶ· ὁ δὲ Πατὴρ ἐν ἐμοὶ μένων ποιεῖ τὰ ἔργα αὐτοῦ.

Here is Wallace NET Bible:

52sn Should Thomas’ exclamation be understood as two subjects with the rest of the sentence omitted (“My Lord and my God has truly risen from the dead”), as predicate nominatives (“You are my Lord and my God”), or as vocatives (“My Lord and my God!”)? Probably the most likely is something between the second and third alternatives.

He is on the right track with bold above, but the omitted words are not "...has truly risen from the dead," rather they are "...in him." In other words apostle Thomas said the following in John 20:28 -- "My lord and my God in him !" .. [ὁ κύριός μου καὶ ὁ Θεός μου ἐν αὐτῷ]. In John 20:28 Thomas finally believes what Jesus said to him and to Phillip in John 14:9-10 ( πιστεύετέ μοι ὅτι ἐγὼ ἐν τῷ Πατρὶ καὶ ὁ Πατὴρ ἐν ἐμοί· εἰ δὲ μή, διὰ τὰ ἔργα αὐτὰ πιστεύετε.)

Anyone who stubbornly refuses to acknowledge that ὁ Θεός in John 20:28 = ὁ Πατὴρ , will never get the true meaning of John 20:28.
 
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The Real John Milton

Well-known member
This is what Wallace writes in his GGBB p. 60-61 under the sub-heading VI Nominative of Exclamation:

"A Definition

The nominative substantive is used in an exclamation without any grammatical connection to the rest of the sentence.

B clarification and Significance

The use of the nominative is actually a sub category of the nominative for vocative. However, we will treat it separately and make this (somewhat) arbitrary distinction. Nominative of exclamation will not be used in direct address. It is a primitive use of the language where emotion overrides syntax: The emotional topic is exclaimed without any verb stated.

Robertson points out that this is "a sort of interjectional nominative," something of an emotional outburst. The keys to identifying a nominative of exclamation are : (1) the lack of a verb (though one may be implied), (2) the obvious emotion of the author, and (3) the necessity of an exclamation point in translation. Sometimes ὦ is used with the nominative.

C. illustrations

Romans 7:24, Rom 11:33, Mark 3:34 "

All three factors are met in ὁ κύριός μου καὶ ὁ θεός μου at John 20:28 -- the expression lacks a verb, the obvious emotion of the author is apparent and we need an exclamation point in translation.
 

John Milton

Active member
Someone being God and not-God (i.e. man) simultaneously would hardly make for a "logical" subject. The "logical" identity of ὁ Θεός in John 20:28 is the Father living in Jesus. Recall the last conversation Jesus had with apostle Thomas and another disciple in John 14 --




Here is Wallace NET Bible:



He is on the right track with bold above, but the omitted words are not "...has truly risen from the dead," rather they are "...in him." In other words apostle Thomas said the following in John 20:28 -- "My lord and my God in him !" .. [ὁ κύριός μου καὶ ὁ Θεός μου ἐν αὐτῷ]. In John 20:28 Thomas finally believes what Jesus said to him and to Phillip in John 14:9-10 ( πιστεύετέ μοι ὅτι ἐγὼ ἐν τῷ Πατρὶ καὶ ὁ Πατὴρ ἐν ἐμοί· εἰ δὲ μή, διὰ τὰ ἔργα αὐτὰ πιστεύετε.)

Anyone who stubbornly refuses to acknowledge that ὁ Θεός in John 20:28 = ὁ Πατὴρ , will never get the true meaning of John 20:28.
Your argument needs a shave. Might I suggest a razor?
 

John Milton

Active member
This is what Wallace writes in his GGBB p. 60-61 under the sub-heading VI Nominative of Exclamation:



All three factors are met in ὁ κύριός μου καὶ ὁ θεός μου at John 20:28 -- the expression lacks a verb, the obvious emotion of the author is apparent and we need an exclamation point in translation.
You seem to have missed this part: "The use of the nominative is actually a sub category of the nominative for vocative."
 

Roger Thornhill

Well-known member
Someone being God and not-God (i.e. man) simultaneously would hardly make for a "logical" subject. The "logical" identity of ὁ Θεός in John 20:28 is the Father living in Jesus. Recall the last conversation Jesus had with apostle Thomas and another disciple in John 14 --




Here is Wallace NET Bible:



He is on the right track with bold above, but the omitted words are not "...has truly risen from the dead," rather they are "...in him." In other words apostle Thomas said the following in John 20:28 -- "My lord and my God in him !" .. [ὁ κύριός μου καὶ ὁ Θεός μου ἐν αὐτῷ]. In John 20:28 Thomas finally believes what Jesus said to him and to Phillip in John 14:9-10 ( πιστεύετέ μοι ὅτι ἐγὼ ἐν τῷ Πατρὶ καὶ ὁ Πατὴρ ἐν ἐμοί· εἰ δὲ μή, διὰ τὰ ἔργα αὐτὰ πιστεύετε.)

Anyone who stubbornly refuses to acknowledge that ὁ Θεός in John 20:28 = ὁ Πατὴρ , will never get the true meaning of John 20:28.

That's a good quote from NET! I may ask Gregory if you can be a coauthor too.
 
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