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8331Re: [textualcriticism] 1 Pet 4:16 TWi MEREI TOUTWi

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  • Jonathan C. Borland
    Jun 15, 2014
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      Dear David,

      J. R. Michaels, 1 Peter (Word Biblical Commentary 49; Nashville: Thomas Nelson, 1988), 269-70, probably offers the most easily accessible reason why the reading MEROS was chosen in the new Nestle at 1 Pet 4:16 (i.e., it was chosen on internal more than external grounds, with more weight given to the mass of Byzantine mss than in the past):

      "Kelly has advanced the discussion by addressing a problem that in most commentaries is simply ignored, yet it is doubtful that so much subtlety can be assigned to later copyists. It is hard to believe that they would sacrifice the theological richness of the “name” in favor of such a colorless word as μερος [MEROS], “matter” or “capacity,” merely to clarify the meaning for their readers. Examples of such a sophisticated procedure could be cited among ancient translators (just as the principle of “dynamic equivalence” is recognized among modern translators), but there is no evidence that this variant originated in the translation process (eg, from Greek to Latin). These were not translators but mere scribes or copyists. The more plausible explanation, therefore, is that the prosaic μερει [MEREI] is what Peter originally wrote, and that the scribal change went in the opposite direction, either accidentally or deliberately, under the influence of the significant phrase, “in the name of Christ,” in v 14a.
      "Although μερος [MEROS] occurs nowhere else in 1 Peter, the phrase, “in this matter,” forms a kind of sequel to 2:12 and 3:16, where a similarly colorless εν ω [EN hW] served as the author’s way of introducing a “case” approach to the prospect of slander and interrogation (see Comment on 2:12). In those passages the pronoun ω had no antecedent, no actual word for “case” or “situation” in the context, but if it had, μερος would have been an appropriate word. The vague expression εν τω μερει τουτω [EN TW MEREI TOUTW], therefore, functions here in much the same way as the εν ω of 2:12 and 3:16 (it was easier to see this connection in an earlier generation when μερει was still widely accepted as the correct reading: see, eg, Fronmueller, 82)."



      Jonathan C. Borland

      On Jun 14, 2014, at 5:52 PM, kanakawatut@... [textualcriticism] <textualcriticism@yahoogroups.com> wrote:

      The NA28 reads with BYZ here, TWi MEREI TOUTWi.  I find this to be amazing, since there is not one single witness to this reading that is earlier than the 9th century that I know of.  Not one version.  Not one early church writer.

      Does anyone know the rationale of the NA28 / ECM2 for choosing this reading for their text?  Thanks.

      David Robert Palmer


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