Word order, ετι / ετι in Romans 5:6

Stephen Carlson
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Joined: May 11th, 2011, 10:51 am
Location: Melbourne

Re: Word order, ετι / ετι in Romans 5:6

Post by Stephen Carlson » March 21st, 2012, 9:21 am

Steve, that's a very good and succinct description of the two options and how they would work. I agree with both descriptions of their functions.
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Stephen C. Carlson, Ph.D.
Melbourne, Australia

Jonathan Robie
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Joined: May 5th, 2011, 5:34 pm
Location: Durham, NC

Re: Word order, ετι / ετι in Romans 5:6

Post by Jonathan Robie » March 21st, 2012, 11:52 am

serunge wrote:Anyhow, Stephen and I reach similar conclusions using complementary approaches, phrasing versus whatever it is I do. I think I do a similar analysis in my head, but less intentionally marked out than Stephen. Using the phrasing strategy shows your work, facilitating correction. It looks like a great strategy.
I agree - I'm finding this thread very exciting. And very much appreciating your contributions to it as well.

Now if Stephen can teach the rest of us to do this ...
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ἐξίσταντο δὲ πάντες καὶ διηποροῦντο, ἄλλος πρὸς ἄλλον λέγοντες, τί θέλει τοῦτο εἶναι;

Iver Larsen
Posts: 127
Joined: May 7th, 2011, 3:52 am

Re: Word order, ετι / ετι in Romans 5:6

Post by Iver Larsen » March 23rd, 2012, 1:02 am

First let me quote the N/A text again:
ἔτι γὰρ Χριστὸς ὄντων ἡμῶν ἀσθενῶν ἔτι κατὰ καιρὸν ὑπὲρ ἀσεβῶν ἀπέθανεν.

It will be helpful to look more into the different senses of ἔτι. Louw&Nida has three senses:
a still: 67.128
b in addition: 59.75
c nevertheless: 89.135

For each of these they give a bit more explanation:

67.128 ἀκμήν; ἔτι; τὸ λοιπόν: extension of time up to and beyond an expected point—‘still, yet.’ἀκμήν: ἀκμὴν καὶ ὑμεῖς ἀσύνετοί ἐστε; ‘are you still without understanding?’ Mt 15:16.
ἔτι: ἔτι αὐτοῦ λαλοῦντος ἰδοὺ Ἰούδας εἷς τῶν δώδεκα ἦλθεν ‘he was still speaking when Judas, one of the twelve, arrived’ Mt 26:47.

However, it is not always helpful to lump three different words together as if there was no difference in meaning, so I'd like to supplement with BDAG:

① pert. to continuance, yet, still (contrast ἤδη ‘already’–ἔτι ‘still’.)
ⓐ in positive statements, to denote that a given situation is continuing still, yet.

The word order indicates the prominence of the adverb as compared to the other elements in the sentence. When there is an element of unexpectedness or contrast, the word comes at the front. In order words, the more to the left the word is placed, the more relative prominence it has.

L&N: 59.75 ἔτι: the state of something being in addition to what already exists—‘in addition, besides.’

② ...
ⓑ that which is added to what is already at hand.

I would consider the first ἔτι in our verse to indicate an addition, or a continuation of the argumentation. It is not translated in English versions, but might be rendered: On top of that...

The second ἔτι belongs to the genitive absolute as a continuation of a state, but it is not in focus and is therefore placed last. Christ died for us when we were in a state of weakness, still. There is no focus on unexpectedness or contrast in this state as there is in Rom 5:8.

It is not so common to use ἔτι without a focus, so a placement at the end is not common. The placement is part of the intended meaning. We have a similar last placement in Rev 22.11 for the continuation of a state.:

ὁ ἀδικῶν ἀδικησάτω ἔτι, καὶ ὁ ῥυπαρὸς ῥυπανθήτω ἔτι, καὶ ὁ δίκαιος δικαιοσύνην ποιησάτω ἔτι καὶ ὁ ἅγιος ἁγιασθήτω ἔτι.

It was mentioned that the Byzantine text does not have the second ἔτι. I think this reflects that the word is not in focus and is, in fact, expendable. It adds very little to the meaning of the sentence.

In case someone is wondering, I have never bought into the topic-comment theory of lingusitics.
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