βούλεται in 1 Cor. 12:11?

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βούλεται in 1 Cor. 12:11?

Postby Mike Burke Deactivated » January 30th, 2014, 3:10 am

I understand that βούλεται is a third person singular pronoun, but is it masculine or neuter?

If masculine, could it refer to Πνεῦμα, or would it refer to Θεός (all the way back in verse 6)?

Who is "He" here?
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Re: βούλεται in 1 Cor. 12:11?

Postby Hefin J. Jones » January 30th, 2014, 5:18 am

βούλεται is a third person singular VERB. There is no pronoun in that clause. In greek the verb is not inflected for gender.

Since πνευμα is the agent of the main verb in the main clause of 12:11 and the implicit agent of the participle διαιρουν it would be extremely odd for the spirit to not be the agentive subject of βούλεται, especially since the βούλεται is helping us understand διαιρουν.
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Re: βούλεται in 1 Cor. 12:11?

Postby Stephen Carlson » January 30th, 2014, 5:48 am

I should remind all people posing new questions to quote the verse in question, in Greek.
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βούλεται has gender, Yes. Unmarked gender.

Postby Stephen Hughes » January 31st, 2014, 12:59 pm

1 Corinthians 12:11 wrote:πάντα δὲ ταῦτα ἐνεργεῖ τὸ ἓν καὶ τὸ αὐτὸ πνεῦμα, διαιροῦν ἰδίᾳ ἑκάστῳ καθὼς βούλεται.
Mike Burke wrote:I understand that βούλεται is a third person singular pronoun, but is it masculine or neuter?

That is a really great question. As Heffin says, Greek doesn't make verbs for gender, but they still "have" gender. When I am reading I usually think of the un-marked grammatical date for words as well as noticing the things that are marked. Even simple a word like καί is so much easier to think about if we can at least guess at what its number, case, gender or mood is.

For genders, there are 8 that I can remember just at the moment
    Masculine - grammatically masculine
    Masculine - refering to things that are either masculine or feminine
    Masculine - referring to things that are naturally male
    Feminine - grammatically feminine
    Feminine - referring to things that are naturally female
    Masculine - common gender (in the plural)
    Neuter - grammatically neuter
    Impesonal - the form is neuter, but is actually makes no reference to anything.
Perhaps you could add some other genders that I have missed.

These things are not usually discussed in grammars, because grammar books all too often just decode the form of the langauge for what it differentiates. That is actually only the beginning. We need to go on from that basic understanding and look at gender more broadly.

You need to come forward a few thousand years in your thinking about "pronouns". It is thought that things like -ται were originally perhaps pronouns, but by the time that the letter to the Corinthians was written, they were very much suffixes.
- Mire sear stir ears art our players for are mourn Thor sore.
- Wart word sheer warned tore door tore more roar?
- Sheer word warned tore gore tore Bore stern, Ire sir pores.
- Mare Ire gore tore?
- Sure!
(How Mandarin from Northern China sounds to me)
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Re: βούλεται in 1 Cor. 12:11?

Postby Stephen Hughes » January 31st, 2014, 7:36 pm

I'm sorry Mike, there is one glaring omission from my list:
    Neuter - referring to things that are naturally objects
It is much easier - probably uses a different mental process - to learn the natural gender (sex) of something than to learn the coventional (grammatical) gender of something. Using more and more diminutives leads to an increased use of the neuter for things that are not sexually gendered.

I hope that my answers help you consider the genders of verbs per se. As Heffin suggested, when there is an external pronoun in either of the 3 gender forms, then you only need to consider a sub-set of possible genders.
- Mire sear stir ears art our players for are mourn Thor sore.
- Wart word sheer warned tore door tore more roar?
- Sheer word warned tore gore tore Bore stern, Ire sir pores.
- Mare Ire gore tore?
- Sure!
(How Mandarin from Northern China sounds to me)
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Re: βούλεται in 1 Cor. 12:11?

Postby Mike Burke » February 7th, 2014, 5:09 pm

Stephen Hughes wrote:I'm sorry Mike, there is one glaring omission from my list:
    Neuter - referring to things that are naturally objects
It is much easier - probably uses a different mental process - to learn the natural gender (sex) of something than to learn the coventional (grammatical) gender of something. Using more and more diminutives leads to an increased use of the neuter for things that are not sexually gendered.

I hope that my answers help you consider the genders of verbs per se. As Heffin suggested, when there is an external pronoun in either of the 3 gender forms, then you only need to consider a sub-set of possible genders.

So is βούλεται

Masculine - grammatically masculine
Masculine - refering to things that are either masculine or feminine
Masculine - referring to things that are naturally male
Feminine - grammatically feminine
Feminine - referring to things that are naturally female
Masculine - common gender (in the plural)
Neuter - grammatically neuter
Impesonal - the form is neuter, but is actually makes no reference to anything

or

Neuter - referring to things that are naturally objects?

And what is it's antecedent?
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Re: βούλεται in 1 Cor. 12:11?

Postby timothy_p_mcmahon » February 9th, 2014, 1:25 am

Mike Burke wrote:So is βούλεται
Masculine - grammatically masculine
Masculine - refering to things that are either masculine or feminine
Masculine - referring to things that are naturally male
Feminine - grammatically feminine
Feminine - referring to things that are naturally female
Masculine - common gender (in the plural)
Neuter - grammatically neuter
Impesonal - the form is neuter, but is actually makes no reference to anything
or
Neuter - referring to things that are naturally objects?

Completely within the purview of the interpreter.

Mike Burke wrote:And what is it's antecedent?

It has none. An antecedent is a substantive to which a pronoun refers back. E.g., "When John went to the store he bought a book" — here, "John" is the antecedent of "he". What you're asking is what's the subject of the verb βούλεται. The most likely subject of βούλεται is το εν και το αυτο πνευμα. I'd say an interpreter would need a very strong reason to propose an alternative.
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Re: βούλεται in 1 Cor. 12:11?

Postby Stephen Hughes » February 9th, 2014, 4:06 am

I agree with TPM, it is "Neuter - grammatically neuter", but in English, we have the habit of referring to God's Spirit as "He". Part of translating is choosing the correct gender for words and pronouns in the target language.
- Mire sear stir ears art our players for are mourn Thor sore.
- Wart word sheer warned tore door tore more roar?
- Sheer word warned tore gore tore Bore stern, Ire sir pores.
- Mare Ire gore tore?
- Sure!
(How Mandarin from Northern China sounds to me)
Stephen Hughes
 
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Joined: February 26th, 2013, 7:12 am
Location: China

Re: βούλεται in 1 Cor. 12:11?

Postby Mike Burke » February 9th, 2014, 7:20 pm

Thank you both.
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Re: βούλεται in 1 Cor. 12:11?

Postby Stephen Hughes » February 13th, 2014, 11:08 am

Stephen Hughes wrote:I agree with TPM, it is "Neuter - grammatically neuter", but in English, we have the habit of referring to God's Spirit as "He". Part of translating is choosing the correct gender for words and pronouns in the target language.

I'm sorry, I may not have expressed myself well; the convention in in English is to call God's Spirit - and indeed God himself HE - but you as an interpreter have to decide if that is grammatical or biological gender - ie. whether you think that is a valid assumption / change to make. Greek only takes you so far, the rest is normal language processing were you have to decide what you think something "means", the same way that you have to decide what English "means" after you know the meaning of the words.

It is wrong to equate interpreted form with meaning. While the form is grammatically neuter, the spirit may or may not be neuter.
- Mire sear stir ears art our players for are mourn Thor sore.
- Wart word sheer warned tore door tore more roar?
- Sheer word warned tore gore tore Bore stern, Ire sir pores.
- Mare Ire gore tore?
- Sure!
(How Mandarin from Northern China sounds to me)
Stephen Hughes
 
Posts: 1299
Joined: February 26th, 2013, 7:12 am
Location: China

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