A Generation

Discussion in 'Bible Prophecy' started by Joshuastone7, Oct 2, 2021.

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    Joshuastone7

    Joshuastone7 Administrator Staff Member

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    Greetings friends,

    Did you know most translations leave a word out of Mathew 24:30 because they don't know how to it fits into the sentence?

    Here's Young's Literal Translation,

    "Verily I say to you, this generation may not pass away till all these may come to pass." Mth 24:34

    Now that's curious, why in the world does Young's translation use the word may when transcribing the Greek AN here in this verse, while most all other translations leave it out altogether?

    Firstly, what is that Greek word AN?

    AN; Particle, Disjunctive Particle - Generally denoting a supposition, wish, possibility or uncertainty

    So It seems that the YLT tried to express the subjunctive mode by the use of the word may.

    Royce Gruenler (Professor of New Testament Emeritus at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary) gave an interesting explanation for the presence of this subjunctive here. The verbs in this verse are in the 2nd aorist tense, active voice, and subjunctive mode. Gruenler wrote that the aorist tense is indefinite and states only the fact of an action without specifying its duration. (The aorist tense is the Greek grammarian's term for simple past tense. Unlike the past tenses (imperfect and perfect), the aorist simply states that an action has happened.) He says that when the aorist describes an action as a unit event, it may accentuate one of three possibilities. Then he asks us to imagine a ball that has been thrown:

    1. Let fly (inceptive or ingressive)
    2. Flew (constative or durative)
    3. Hit (culminative or telic)

    So if we view the verb as an ingressive aorist, Christ’s words may be rendered,

    “I tell you the truth, this generation will certainly not pass away until all these things begin to come to pass.” Mth 24:34

    Hmm, so in reality, our Lord wasn't saying that all these things He was just speaking of would occur within some understanding of a period of a generation, but rather these things would be occurring within that generation.

    It should also be noted that our Lord's words are just as easily applied to those who see these things occur. Meaning that the generation is those who see these events occur, no matter when that generation was.

    Gruenler states that this nuance of the same aorist form may also be seen in the angel Gabriel’s words to Zechariah here, "And now you will be silent and not able to speak until the day γενηται ταυτα. Luk 1:20 (the same Greek expression for “come to pass”). Gruenler points out that not only the birth, but the adult ministry of John the Baptist was prophesied by Gabriel, yet Zechariah recovers his speech as soon as he writes the name of his infant son John on a tablet. Accordingly, verse 20 should be translated, “And now you will be silent and not able to speak until the day all these things begin to happen.”

    Now, this makes sense since we know the apostles began recognizing Jesus's words being fulfilled in the world around them.

    "Dear children, this is the last hour; and as you have heard that the antichrist is coming, even now many antichrists have come. This is how we know it is the last hour." 1Jhn 2:18

    "Dear friends, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world." 1Jhn 4:1

    They had already begun seeing our Lord's words from Mathew 24 occurring, which was in fulfillment of their generation seeing these things already taking place. Much of Matthew 24 and Jesus’s narration was coming to pass or did come to pass whilst some of that generation was still alive.

    Interestingly, in Mathew 23:36 the word in Greek translated as "will come" is the word hékó. Rather than this word meaning something that is future, it actually intends to mean "has come."

    "Truly I tell you, all this will come on this generation." Mth 23:36 NIV

    Here is the proper rendition,

    "Truly I tell you, all this has come upon this generation." Mth 23:36

    This is more accurate and fits the context of Jesus's words. He was saying the shepherds of that time were claiming they wouldn't have persecuted the prophets of old as their ancestors did, yet our Lord points out they have and will continue to. Rather than the beliefs of their hands being clean from the blood of prophets being accurate, the blood of all prophets from Able to Zechariah were indeed currently on their hands, and how were they able to escape the hellfires indeed?

    How much doctrinal traditions have influenced translations...

    Joshua
     
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    PaulAche

    PaulAche New Member

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    I agree that doctrinal traditions have greatly influenced translations of the Bible. Simply look at the trinitarian issue and its easy to see the effects of exegesis throughout many of the modern translations. By putting their version of the truth into the scriptures, and to subtly convey a different meaning than the original is their way of saying "here is the proper rendition".

    Here is an example of what I mean.

    New International Version
    “To the angel of the church in Laodicea write: These are the words of the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the ruler of God’s creation.

    Because those who authored the NIV believe in a trinity, they substituted the "ruler" for "beginning". If Jesus was the beginning of Creation he could not be eternal, so they changed it.

    They believe their version to be the "proper rendition".

    Joshuastone, I don't feel that 'your' rendition of Mt 23:36 alters the scriptures that much. Not nearly as much as changing the nature of Jesus Christ into a trinity that's for sure. However, to even alter it a little bit is walking down a very dangerous path I'm sure you don't want to take, for it leads to the same place the Pharisees were, lost.


     
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    Joshuastone7

    Joshuastone7 Administrator Staff Member

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    While I appreciate your concern Paul Ache, I will have to disagree with you. Millions of people are translating on a daily basis. Scripture is language, and that must be translated from one language to another. There are thousands of translations of the Bible into thousands of languages around the world. There are hundreds of English translations. I myself am in the process of translating several inspired texts and have "altered," as you say, quite a few from how many translations present them.

    I will agree with you that an untrained hand can lead oneself astray through confirmation bias; however, the scientific method lends itself to uncovering the truth as its goal...

    Again I thank you for the concern, though... ;)

    Joshua
     
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    Joshuastone7

    Joshuastone7 Administrator Staff Member

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    In fact, brother, I tend to find that those who study the original languages are generally much more accurate in their understanding. I always encourage one's to look into the original languages when studying a subject; you'll gain a much more rounded perspective of the subject studied.

    Rather than reinforcing confirmation biases, I tend to see such ones garner more accurate knowledge.

    All love
     

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