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Mark 9:20, test of your ability to read and understand biblical Koine

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  • Mark 9:20, test of your ability to read and understand biblical Koine

    Mark 9:20–

    καὶ ἤνεγκαν αὐτὸν πρὸς αὐτόν. καὶ ἰδὼν αὐτὸν τὸ πνεῦμα εὐθὺς συνεσπάραξεν αὐτόν, καὶ πεσὼν ἐπὶ τῆς γῆς ἐκυλίετο ἀφρίζων.
    What word is the participle ἰδὼν modifying ?

  • #2
    On first sight, I'd read it as the boy... "And when [the boy] saw [Jesus], the spirit immediately threw him into a convulsion."
    I have permission to post on the Biblical Languages forum, as per email correspondence with Diane S.

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by Jameson View Post
      On first sight, I'd read it as the boy... "And when [the boy] saw [Jesus], the spirit immediately threw him into a convulsion."
      So ἰδὼν is modifying “the boy” in which verse exactly ?

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by Jameson View Post
        On first sight, I'd read it as the boy... "And when [the boy] saw [Jesus], the spirit immediately threw him into a convulsion."
        No, that would require ἰδόντα, since you would have παῖδα in the accusative (as we have the pronoun αὐτόν). So, if a demonic πνεῦμα can be thought of as personal and modified with a masculine participle, how much more so can the Spirit of the living God be thought of as personal?

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by Barry Hofstetter View Post

          (1) No, that would require ἰδόντα, since you would have παῖδα in the accusative (as we have the pronoun αὐτόν).

          (1) So, if a demonic πνεῦμα can be thought of as personal and modified with a masculine participle, how much more so can the Spirit of the living God be thought of as personal?
          (1) Bingo!

          (2) It’s precisely because the Spirit of God is never modified with masculine pronouns that every wise reader of the bible should conclude that IT is not a person.

          Comment


          • #6
            καὶ ἰδὼν αὐτὸν τὸ πνεῦμα εὐθὺς συνεσπάραξεν αὐτόν,

            The subject of this sentence is πνεῦμα, the child is the direct object (αὐτόν above in red), so how can ἰδὼν ( nominative) be modifying the child , especially “on first sight” ?

            One’s grammar would have to be extremely weak to think ἰδὼν is modifying anything other than τὸ πνεῦμα here.

            Comment


            • #7
              I think Jameson wants to assume the word τό παιδίον into the sentence:


              καὶ ἰδὼν (τό παιδίον) αὐτὸν , τὸ πνεῦμα εὐθὺς συνεσπάραξεν αὐτόν,

              For starters, this would still be an instance of ad sensum.

              Or perhaps he would like to assume the word ὁ υἱός here ?

              καὶ ἰδὼν (ὁ υἱός) αὐτὸν τὸ πνεῦμα εὐθὺς συνεσπάραξεν αὐτόν,

              How exactly would this clause make grammatical sense within the sentence? Would καὶ ἰδὼν αὐτὸν then become a weird dependent clause of some sort ? Lol. How would it syntactically relate to the sentence as a whole ? Foolishness.




              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by John Milton View Post
                I think Jameson wants to assume the word τό παιδίον into the sentence:


                καὶ ἰδὼν (τό παιδίον) αὐτὸν , τὸ πνεῦμα εὐθὺς συνεσπάραξεν αὐτόν,

                For starters, this would still be an instance of ad sensum.

                Or perhaps he would like to assume the word ὁ υἱός here ?

                καὶ ἰδὼν (ὁ υἱός) αὐτὸν τὸ πνεῦμα εὐθὺς συνεσπάραξεν αὐτόν,

                How exactly would this clause make grammatical sense within the sentence? Would καὶ ἰδὼν αὐτὸν then become a weird dependent clause of some sort ? Lol. How would it syntactically relate to the sentence as a whole ? Foolishness.



                The text uses an expected masculine pronoun when referring to the boy, most likely because of the earlier use of υἱος. But in 21, ἰδὠν can only modify the subject.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Barry Hofstetter View Post

                  The text uses an expected masculine pronoun when referring to the boy, most likely because of the earlier use of υἱος. But in 21, ἰδὠν can only modify the subject.
                  You mean verse 20, there is no ἰδὠν in “21.”

                  Correct , in verse 20 ἰδὠν can only modify the subject ( τὸ πνεῦμα). See also following examples:


                  Τότε Ἡρῴδης ἰδὼν (Matthew 2:16)

                  Ἰδὼν δὲ ὁ Ἰησοῦς (Matthew 8:18)

                  ἰδὼν ὁ Ἰησοῦς (Matthew 9:2)

                  ἰδὼν ὁ Ἰησοῦς (Matthew 9:4)

                  ἰδὼν Ἰούδας (Matthew 27:3)

                  ἰδὼν δὲ ὁ Πιλᾶτος (27:24)

                  ἰδὼν ὁ Ἰησοῦς (Mark 2:5)

                  Ἰάϊρος καὶ ἰδὼν αὐτὸν (Mark 5:22)

                  καὶ ἰδὼν αὐτὸν τὸ πνεῦμα (Mark 9:20)

                  ἰδὼν δὲ ὁ Ἰησοῦς (Mark 9:25)

                  ἰδὼν δὲ ὁ Ἰησοῦς (Mark 10:14)

                  ὁ Ἰησοῦς, ἰδὼν αὐτὸν (Mark 12:34)

                  Ἰδὼν δὲ ὁ κεντυρίων (Mark 15:39)

                  Ζαχαρίας ἰδών (Luke 1:12)

                  ἰδὼν δὲ Σίμων Πέτρος (Luke 5:8)

                  ὁ δὲ Φαρισαῖος ἰδὼν (Luke 11:38)

                  ἰδὼν δὲ αὐτὴν ὁ Ἰησοῦς (Luke 13:12)

                  ἰδὼν δὲ αὐτὸν ὁ Ἰησοῦς εἶπεν (Luke 18:24)

                  ὁ δὲ Ἡρῴδης ἰδὼν τὸν Ἰησοῦν (Luke 23:8)

                  ἰδὼν δὲ ὁ ἑκατοντάρχης (Luke 23:47)

                  τοῦτον ἰδὼν ὁ Ἰησοῦς κατακείμενον (John 5:6)

                  Ἰησοῦς οὖν ἰδὼν τὴν μητέρα (John 19:26)

                  τοῦτον οὖν ἰδὼν ὁ Πέτρος λέγει τῷ Ἰησοῦ (John 21:21)

                  ὃς ἰδὼν Πέτρον καὶ Ἰωάνην (Acts 3:3)

                  ὁ δὲ Μωϋσῆς ἰδὼν ἐθαύμαζεν τὸ ὅραμα (Acts 7:31)

                  ἰδὼν δὲ ὁ Σίμων ὅτι (Acts 8:18)

                  τότε ἰδὼν ὁ ἀνθύπατος (Acts 13:12)

                  οὓς ἰδὼν ὁ Παῦλος (Acts 28:15)

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by John Milton View Post

                    You mean verse 20, there is no ἰδὠν in “21.”

                    Correct , in verse 20 ἰδὠν can only modify the subject ( τὸ πνεῦμα). See also following examples:

                    (snip)
                    Of course vs. 20. Typos happen. I don't need a bunch of examples because I know how the language works. You're right that it's a "classic" ad sensum. As far as I know, this has never been in dispute, and nobody has every had a problem understanding what Mark 9:20 says. Of course, we could get snarky and talk about gender identification... (that's a joke, son, a joke in case you don't get it).

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Barry Hofstetter View Post

                      Of course vs. 20. Typos happen. I don't need a bunch of examples because I know how the language works. You're right that it's a "classic" ad sensum. As far as I know, this has never been in dispute, and nobody has every had a problem understanding what Mark 9:20 says. Of course, we could get snarky and talk about gender identification... (that's a joke, son, a joke in case you don't get it).
                      Steven Avery in the other thread has highlighted a Trinitarian “scholar” by the name of “Buttman” who apparently disputes ( denies) that ἰδὠν modifies τὸ πνεῦμα:




                      CONSTBUCTIO AD SYNESIN IN THE PREDICATE.
                      ... b) The predicate follows the natural gender of the subject. Of this the examples are most numerous in the Apocalypse, in accordance with the style of the author (see § 123, 7 p. 80). ... fj-ivuL. (But ... in Mark ix. 20 ἰδὼν does not refer to τὸ πνεῦμα see § 144, 18 c) p. 299.)

                      A Grammar of the New Testament Greek (1891)
                      By Alexander Buttmann
                      https://books.google.com/books?id=oA9CAAAAIAAJ&pg=PA130
                      p. 129-130

                      Wonder what his rationale is.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        The grammar seems ambiguous to me. I think there are a couple of different ways to understand the text, and each has its difficulties. It is worth noting that another participle is used with a different main verb after the καἰ. Is it to be taken with spirit as well? We wouldn't usually conceive of a spirit rolling around and foaming at the mouth.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by CL4P-TP View Post
                          The grammar seems ambiguous to me. I think there are a couple of different ways to understand the text, and each has its difficulties. It is worth noting that another participle is used with a different main verb after the καἰ. Is it to be taken with spirit as well? We wouldn't usually conceive of a spirit rolling around and foaming at the mouth.
                          So how would you parse the grammar here ?

                          καὶ ἰδὼν αὐτὸν τὸ πνεῦμα εὐθὺς συνεσπάραξεν αὐτόν,

                          What word is ἰδὼν modifying ?

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by John Milton View Post

                            So how would you parse the grammar here ?

                            καὶ ἰδὼν αὐτὸν τὸ πνεῦμα εὐθὺς συνεσπάραξεν αὐτόν,

                            What word is ἰδὼν modifying ?
                            It could refer to the son or the spirit. It is conceivable, though in my opinion much less likely, that it could refer to Jesus. Just because a construction has a grammatical explanation, it doesn't mean that the author followed the rules of grammar. We unconsciously mess up grammar all the time in English. Example: Today, I hit a deer going to work. Who or what was on the way to work? Language study doesn't always yield clear answers.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by John Milton View Post

                              So how would you parse the grammar here ?

                              καὶ ἰδὼν αὐτὸν τὸ πνεῦμα εὐθὺς συνεσπάραξεν αὐτόν,

                              What word is ἰδὼν modifying ?
                              I've never heard anyone use the expression "parse the grammar," nor do I think that a circumstantial participle is "modifying" a word. You could ask what the subject of the circumstantial participle is and what it's in agreement with. You could ask that someone explain the syntax and what is happening with the various participles in the verse.

                              I read ἰδών as referring to the boy because there are other participles in the verse which obviously refer to him. It would have been more natural for the author to use a passive verb after the first to keep the boy the subject of the verb. As CL4P said, all of the options are problematic in one way or another.
                              I have permission to post on the Biblical Languages forum, as per email correspondence with Diane S.

                              Comment

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