Call To Die

Then [Jesus] said to them all, "If anyone wants to come with Me, he must deny himself, take up his cross daily, and follow Me. For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life because of Me will save it. (Luke 9:23-24, HCSB)

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Follower of Christ, husband of Abby, member of New Georgia Baptist Church.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Commission of John to Write the Book of Revelation

[Below is my translation of Revelation 1:9-20. As always, I especially welcome comments/questions from any students of Biblical Greek that may sharpen the translation.]


9 I, John– your[1] brother and co-fellowshipper in the hardship and kingdom and perseverance in Jesus– came to be on the island called Patmos due to the message of God and the testimony of Jesus. 10 I was in the spirit on the Lord’s Day when behind me I heard a loud voice like a trumpet 11 saying, “Write[2] what you see into a book and send it to the seven congregations: to Ephesus,[3] to Smyrna, to Pergamum, to Thyatira, to Sardis, to Philadelphia, and to Laodicea.”
12 And I turned to see the voice of whoever was speaking with me; and, having turned, I saw seven golden lamp-stands, 13 and in [the] middle of the lamp-stands [one] like a son of man having been clothed in long flowing robes reaching down to his feet, and having been girded around the chest with a golden sash. 14 His head– that is, his hair– [was] white like wool– white as snow– and his eyes [were] like flames of fire. 15 And his feet resembled fine bronze as fired in a furnace, and his voice [was] like the sound of many waters. 16 And [he was][4] holding seven stars in his right hand, and a sharp, two-edged sword was going forth from his mouth, and his appearance [was] like the sun, shining in power.
17 And when I saw him, I fell before his feet like a dead man,[5] and he placed his right hand on me, saying, “Don’t be afraid! I am the First and the Last, 18 the Living One, and I was dead– but look!– I am living from forever into forever, and I hold the keys to death and to Hades.[6] 19 Therefore, write down the things that you saw, and the things that are, and the things that are about to happen. 20 [As for] the mystery of the seven stars that you saw in my right hand and the seven golden lamp-stands: the seven stars are the angels of the seven congregations and the seven lamp-stands are the seven congregations.


[1]This is the second person plural possessive [i.e., “y'all’s”], rather than the second person singular.
[2]The imperative “write” is brought to the forefront of this verse to convey the point that this verse is a command.
[3]Greek tends to separate all items in a list with a conjunction, whereas English uses commas to separate items in a list, only using a conjunction before the final item; therefore, many instances of kai will be left untranslated except by punctuation.
[4]A form of estin (rendered “he was” in translation) must have been understood by the original audience to be supplied in the readers’ thinking between kai and evcwn. This understood estin would have been the controlling verb for this verse, yielding “was” in the translation again after “appearance” (ovyiV).
[5]nekroV, being NMS and anarthrous, is translated “a dead man.”
[6]Kai is translated in different ways based on the context. The first kai is understood as epexegetical. Rather than forming the third part of a description [the First and the Last and the Living One], this should be understood as a further insight into the previous description of Christ’s eternality [the First and the Last, even the Living One].

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