Rom 5:12 - εφ ω παντες ημαρτον

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David Lim
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Rom 5:12 - εφ ω παντες ημαρτον

Post by David Lim » May 19th, 2012, 12:36 pm

I recently read Rom 5:12 and was immediately struck by what it said contrary to what I remembered it saying:
[Rom 5:12] δια τουτο ωσπερ δι ενος ανθρωπου η αμαρτια εις τον κοσμον εισηλθεν και δια της αμαρτιας ο θανατος και ουτως εις παντας ανθρωπους ο θανατος διηλθεν εφ ω παντες ημαρτον
"because of this, even as through one man the sin entered into the world and through the sin the death, and in this way into all men the death passed, upon which all sinned,"
"because of this, even as the sin entered into the world through one man, and the death [entered] through the sin, and in this way the death passed into all men, because of which all sinned,"

So I checked LSJ and it said: "ἐφ᾽ ᾧ = wherefore, Ep.Rom.5.12". Then I checked the context and it is indeed supported by Rom 5:17-19. CEB is the only translation I found that agrees with my reading. I looked at the alternatives given by the NET Bible notes, but "in whom" would have been expressed by "εν ω" and not "εφ ω", and what is the evidence for understanding "εφ ω" as "upon the reason that"? I am looking for texts with similar structure where the only possible reading that is logical is to take "εφ ω" in that way instead of "upon which".
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GlennDean
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Re: Rom 5:12 - εφ ω παντες ημαρτον

Post by GlennDean » May 19th, 2012, 10:16 pm

Hi David:

I would translate εφ´ ᾧ as "on the basis of which" (so the final part of the verse would be "on the basis of which all sinned"). I'm translating εφ´ as "on the basis of" because it is followed by the relative pronoun ᾧ, which is in the dative singular.

I think the final part of the verse is clarifying how did death spread to all men (and the final part of the verse is saying "death spread to all men because of, or on the basis of which, all sinned"). To say it another way, Adam brought in sin into the world, which spread to all men, and since sin leads to death, death spreads to all men (since all sin)

Scott Lawson
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Re: Rom 5:12 - εφ ω παντες ημαρτον

Post by Scott Lawson » May 20th, 2012, 12:46 am

David Lim wrote:I am looking for texts with similar structure where the only possible reading that is logical is to take "εφ ω" in that way instead of "upon which".
David,
There is some controversy over how best to render ἐφ ὧ at Romans 5:12 as may be seen by the referenced for and against papers written by the "great minds" in BDAG under the entry ἐπί (6) w.dat., c, ἐφ ὧ = επὶ τούτῳ ὅτι for this reason that, because. Also, ἐφ ὧ πάντες ἥμαρτον at Romans 5:12 is considered by Robertson to be the more striking of Paul's anacolouthon where the apodosis to the ὤσπερ clause is wanting and the next sentence (ἄχρι γάρ) takes up the subordinate clause ἐφ ὧ πάντες ἥμαρτον and the comparison is never completed. Note also that the W/H and M.Holmes texts print a dash after ἐφ ὧ πάντες ἥμαρτον to indicate an incomplete thought, though the N/A text gives no such help. BDAG gives 2 Cor. 4:5, Phil 3:12;for, indeed 4:10 as comparitive references.

Good hunting,
Scotty
Scott Lawson

David Lim
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Re: Rom 5:12 - εφ ω παντες ημαρτον

Post by David Lim » May 20th, 2012, 1:42 am

GlennDean wrote:Hi David:

I would translate εφ´ ᾧ as "on the basis of which" (so the final part of the verse would be "on the basis of which all sinned"). I'm translating εφ´ as "on the basis of" because it is followed by the relative pronoun ᾧ, which is in the dative singular.

I think the final part of the verse is clarifying how did death spread to all men (and the final part of the verse is saying "death spread to all men because of, or on the basis of which, all sinned"). To say it another way, Adam brought in sin into the world, which spread to all men, and since sin leads to death, death spreads to all men (since all sin)
No, if you take "ω" as a relative pronoun it has "ουτως εις παντας ανθρωπους ο θανατος διηλθεν" as its antecedent. Also your translation implies my reading and not your interpretation. If you want your interpretation it should be "upon this basis: that all sinned". Anyway I am looking for actual examples where "εφ ω" means "because", otherwise I will stick with "upon which", as LSJ's "death passed into all men, wherefore all sinned", which implies "indeed because death passed into all men, all sinned". Thus the meaning of the whole sentence would be:
(1) It was through one man that the sin entered into the world
(2) It was through the sin that death entered into the world
(3) Thus the death passed into all men
(4) Thus all men sinned
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David Lim
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Re: Rom 5:12 - εφ ω παντες ημαρτον

Post by David Lim » May 20th, 2012, 2:33 am

Scott Lawson wrote:BDAG gives 2 Cor. 4:5, Phil 3:12;for, indeed 4:10 as comparitive references.
I do not see how 2 Cor 4:5 is related. As for the other two, they are not the same in grammatical structure in my opinion:

[Phlp 3:12]
"ουχ οτι ηδη ελαβον η ηδη τετελειωμαι διωκω δε ει και καταλαβω εφ ω και κατεληφθην υπο του χριστου ιησου"
"not that I already received or already have been made complete, but I pursue if also I might take hold of [that] upon which also I was taken hold of by Christ Jesus"
"[it is] not that I already received, or [that] I already have been made complete, but I [still] pursue, [with the hope that] I might also take hold of what Christ Jesus took hold of me for."

[Phlp 4:10]
"εχαρην δε εν κυριω μεγαλως οτι ηδη ποτε ανεθαλετε το υπερ εμου φρονειν εφ ω και εφρονειτε ηκαιρεισθε δε"
"but I rejoiced in [the] lord greatly that at length you revived your thinking for me upon [that] which also you were thinking but were without opportunity,"
"but I rejoiced greatly in [the] lord that you at length revived your thinking for me upon what you had already been thinking but had been without opportunity,"
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David Lim
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Re: Rom 5:12 - εφ ω παντες ημαρτον

Post by David Lim » May 20th, 2012, 2:55 am

David Lim wrote:
Scott Lawson wrote:BDAG gives 2 Cor. 4:5, Phil 3:12;for, indeed 4:10 as comparitive references.
I do not see how 2 Cor 4:5 is related. [...]
I see, you meant 2 Cor 5:4:

[2 Cor 5:4]
"και γαρ οι οντες εν τω σκηνει στεναζομεν βαρουμενοι εφ ω ου θελομεν εκδυσασθαι αλλ επενδυσασθαι ινα καταποθη το θνητον υπο της ζωης"
"for also, [being] the [ones] who are in the tent, we groan, being burdened, upon which we do not will to unclothe but to enclothe, so that that which is mortal might be swallowed by the life."
"for also, [being] the [ones] who are in the tent [of our body], we groan, being burdened, because of which we want not to unclothe but to enclothe [ourselves], so that what is mortal might be swallowed by the life."

Here is the other relevant occurrence of "εφ ω":

[Matt 26:50]
"ο δε ιησους ειπεν αυτω εταιρε εφ ω παρει τοτε προσελθοντες επεβαλον τας χειρας επι τον ιησουν και εκρατησαν αυτον"
"but Jesus said to him, fellow, [do] [that] upon which you are present. then, having come near, they laid the hands upon Jesus and seized him."
"but Jesus said to him, fellow, [do] [what] you are here for. then, having come near, they laid [their] hands upon Jesus and seized him."
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cwconrad
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Re: Rom 5:12 - εφ ω παντες ημαρτον

Post by cwconrad » May 20th, 2012, 8:14 am

David Lim wrote:... if you take "ω" as a relative pronoun it has "ουτως εις παντας ανθρωπους ο θανατος διηλθεν" as its antecedent. ...
It's hardly necessary to seek an antecedent for this sort of relative pronoun in what precedes. In conjunctional phrases such as this the relative pronoun quite commonly has an implicit antecedent such as a demonstrative: ἐφ’ ᾧ = ἐπὶ τούτῳ, ὅτι. The implicit demonstrative may point to a fact explaining what's been stated previously or to a consequence of what's been stated previously.
See BDF§294(4)
Also corresponding to classical usage is the relative, which includes the demonstrative (unlike German and English), assimilated to the case of the omitted demonstrative: Lk 9:36 οὐδὲν ὧν = οὐδὲν τούτων ἅ.
The difficulty of the construction in Rom 5:12 lies in the fact that the precise referent of the demonstrative in ἐφ’ ὧ = ἐπὶ τούτῳ ὅτι is not clearly specified. That is the reason why there have been alternative interpretations of this sequence. NET's translator's note is nicely indicative of that:
The translation of the phrase ἐφ᾿ ᾧ (eph hō) has been heavily debated. For a discussion of all the possibilities, see C. E. B. Cranfield, “On Some of the Problems in the Interpretation of Romans 5.12,” SJT 22 (1969): 324-41. Only a few of the major options can be mentioned here: (1) the phrase can be taken as a relative clause in which the pronoun refers to Adam, “death spread to all people in whom [Adam] all sinned.” (2) The phrase can be taken with consecutive (resultative) force, meaning “death spread to all people with the result that all sinned.” (3) Others take the phrase as causal in force: “death spread to all people because all sinned.”
Whether one prefers one of these alternatives or some other depends upon how s/he interprets the context; there will be no simple consensus on this matter.
οὔτοι ἀπ’ ἀρχῆς πάντα θεοὶ θνητοῖς ὑπέδειξαν,
ἀλλὰ χρόνῳ ζητέοντες ἐφευρίσκουσιν ἄμεινον. (Xenophanes, Fragment 16)

Carl W. Conrad
Department of Classics, Washington University (Retired)

David Lim
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Re: Rom 5:12 - εφ ω παντες ημαρτον

Post by David Lim » May 20th, 2012, 10:19 am

cwconrad wrote:
David Lim wrote:... if you take "ω" as a relative pronoun it has "ουτως εις παντας ανθρωπους ο θανατος διηλθεν" as its antecedent. ...
It's hardly necessary to seek an antecedent for this sort of relative pronoun in what precedes. In conjunctional phrases such as this the relative pronoun quite commonly has an implicit antecedent such as a demonstrative: ἐφ’ ᾧ = ἐπὶ τούτῳ, ὅτι. The implicit demonstrative may point to a fact explaining what's been stated previously or to a consequence of what's been stated previously.
See BDF§294(4)
Also corresponding to classical usage is the relative, which includes the demonstrative (unlike German and English), assimilated to the case of the omitted demonstrative: Lk 9:36 οὐδὲν ὧν = οὐδὲν τούτων ἅ.
Thanks for the suggestion of the demonstrative, but it does not seem to be the same as in Luke 9:36, because "ουδεν ων" still retains the meaning of the relative pronoun, whereas reading "εφ ω" as "επι τουτω οτι" completely omits the relative pronoun, which is not explained by the quote from BDF. Do you have any examples in Koine Greek where "εφ ω" has to mean "επι τουτω οτι"? I cannot find any in the NT or LXX.

I also found an occurrence in the LXX where "εφ ω" must mean "upon which (reason)":
[Letter of Jeremiah 1:59] ωστε κρεισσον ειναι βασιλεα επιδεικνυμενον την εαυτου ανδρειαν η σκευος εν οικια χρησιμον εφ ω χρησεται ο κεκτημενος η οι ψευδεις θεοι η και θυρα εν οικια διασωζουσα τα εν αυτη οντα η οι ψευδεις θεοι και ξυλινος στυλος εν βασιλειοις η οι ψευδεις θεοι
This implies that it is likewise straightforward to take "εφ ω" in Rom 5:12 to mean "because of which".
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Scott Lawson
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Re: Rom 5:12 - εφ ω παντες ημαρτον

Post by Scott Lawson » May 20th, 2012, 12:12 pm

David Lim wrote:
David Lim wrote:
Scott Lawson wrote:BDAG gives 2 Cor. 4:5, Phil 3:12;for, indeed 4:10 as comparitive references.
I do not see how 2 Cor 4:5 is related. [...]
I see, you meant 2 Cor 5:4:
David, I'm a reverse dyslexic...which means I see words and letters normally and correctly...so I have no excuse for getting the citation wrong. I'll just have to say I'm sorry. LYSDEXIC UNTIE!

I am however a dyslexic paranoid....Ssshhh... don't look now but I think I'm always following someone.
Scott Lawson

David Lim
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Re: Rom 5:12 - εφ ω παντες ημαρτον

Post by David Lim » May 21st, 2012, 9:58 am

Scott Lawson wrote:[...] so I have no excuse for getting the citation wrong. [...]
We all make occasional mistakes. Nothing wrong really. Besides, we all know how to automatically correct copying errors. ;)
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