Mat 19:17 and the Word "good"

Discussion in 'Other Christian Denominations' started by Heavenly Pilgrim, Jan 20, 2012.

  1. Heavenly Pilgrim

    Heavenly Pilgrim
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    Mat 19:17 And he said unto him, Why callest thou me good? there is none good but one, that is, God: but if thou wilt enter into life, keep the commandments.

    HP: This verse has been raised on many occasions. I am no GK expert by any stretch, yet I cannot help but wonder at this text. When looking at the Nestle-Aland Greek English NT text, and then looking in SEC of the Bible, I fail to find the word "God" in the text itself, at least in the manner the SEC of the Bible shows the word "God" to consist of in the GK.

    I have read that the text in the Critical text, Alexandrian, Nestle-Asland simply says "Why do you ask me about what is good? There is one (thing) that is good, and if you would enter into life, keep the commandments."

    I have to wonder myself if this is not a correct conclusion from the GK text itself.


    If Jesus was saying that none were Good but God, why would He seemingly exclude Himself, by saying that none were Good 'but God?' Would that not have been taken by those around Him to indicate that He was not God and that He was not Good? If He was using this text to say that He was God, where was the outcry of 'blasphemy' so clearly noted when they understood Him to be indicating Himself equal with God??

    We all believe in the Deity of Christ, so don't even think about drawing that into question or that somehow I am denying His Deity. I am not. I just see a discrepancy between the GK and the manner so many interpret this verse.

    Thoughts?
     
  2. The Biblicist

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    The Greek word translated "one" is "eis ho" which is MASCULINE and singular rather than neuter as your translation wrongly teaches. Also the Greek term "agathos" is also MASCULINE singule and is speaking of PERSONS not things.



     
  3. ktn4eg

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    I've often wondered about this as well; in fact, I was planning to start a thread on this very question myself.

    Not being a theological scholar (whether it be Greek, Hebrew, or even English!), I'm looking forward to what my BB friends come up with on this particular question.
     
  4. Heavenly Pilgrim

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    ktn4eg, indeed this is an interesting passage. Before this is over we might see who it is that understands the GK or who it is that uses the GK for their advantage. I hope we will not only be looking at the way some interpret the GK in this verse, but how well they are consistent in their applications to the same words used in other passages as well. One such as yourself might desire to do a word search on the word "one" as used in this passage and see what you can gain as to the import (IF what Biblicist stated is correct and "eis ho" is masculine and singular) and if the GK word used cannot be used in any other manner than one masculine and singular manner Biblicist seems to imply the text is limited to. The word Biblicist says is in the text, the GK term "agathos", is or is not strictly "masculine" in nature, and the meaning as well must of necessity be restricted to "persons and not things."

    I would ask Biblicist in the meantime to show us his expertise in the GK and how he is so certain of his interpretation.

    In common parlance can we use English words which might be masculine and singular for something that in reality is not necessarily masculine or even singular? Can we use terms that might be masculine, or feminine for that matter, to depict things that are in reality neither masculine nor feminine? Think carefully.

    If we find in common parlance such strict rules of interpretation do not always apply in the English language, no matter what the rules of strict grammar imply, who is to say that such cannot be the same in the GK or any other language as well? Do we not understand that language is not bound by strict rules such as one might find in a science, but rather first and foremost is a means to communicate ideas and concepts and as such bend the strict rules of grammar on a daily basis when in the business of communicating with others? Scriptural interpretation is not a science governed by the laws of strict and unchangeable grammatical application, but rather is first and foremost a spiritual book that must be spiritually discerned regardless of what language it is written or understood in.
     
  5. Moriah

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    My thoughts on this is that Jesus is God and that by calling him good, then one must acknowledge that he is God, because only God is good. Maybe like now, it was just a little bit difficult to grasp what is implied, and that is why no outcry back then, as you suggest. God came in the flesh. Jesus came as a man, yet he was no mere man. Jesus is the Word of God, and he came only to do the will of God. Everything Jesus said and did point to God.

    I have thought often about that scripture, as many probably have pondered. Please do not make this about learning Greek. I think that there is a snare into believing one must learn Greek to fully understand any scripture.
     
    #5 Moriah, Jan 20, 2012
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 20, 2012
  6. billwald

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    16And, behold, one came and said unto him, Good Master, what good thing shall I do, that I may have eternal life?

    17And he said unto him, Why callest thou me good? there is none good but one, that is, God: but if thou wilt enter into life, keep the commandments.

    Should be obvious that the person was hypocritically trying to suck up to Jesus and Jesus put him down.
     
  7. TrevorL

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    Greetings Heavenly Pilgrim,

    I am not a Greek student and will not answer on that aspect. I believe that Jesus, being of our human nature Hebrews 2:14, also being the Son of Man and Son of God did not claim to be essentially good. He claimed that only God the Father is good. Jesus never sinned, but he was subject to temptation, and overcame sin in the same flesh, (the likeness of sin’s flesh Romans 8:3), that with all others sinned.

    Kind regards
    Trevor
     
  8. Heavenly Pilgrim

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    Pleased to make your acquaintance TreverL. :thumbs:

    Whatever the likeness of our flesh is, in that He indeed did come, and as you say, tempted in every manner as we are, yet without sin.

    Australia! Heard a lot about it and have a son there as we speak. A beautiful place I hear!
     
  9. Heavenly Pilgrim

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    Mat 19:17 And he said unto him, Why callest thou me good? there is none good but one, that is, God: but if thou wilt enter into life, keep the commandments.


    I posted previously about the verse in Mat 19:17, something that I still have not received any help concerning from Biblicist or any other claiming to be knowledgeable in the GK. I have carefully went through that verse in a GK lexicon, trying to establish the meaning of each GK word in that verse, and I still am unable to find any reference to God in that verse in the GK.

    I have not concluded at this time that there is no reference to God in the GK text, but I simply cannot find any such reference to God in the online GK Bible. Who will be the first knowledgeable of the GK to point out to me the GK word or reference to "God" in this text, in the GK of course?
     
  10. Heavenly Pilgrim

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    In the same vein of thoughts, where does the young man ever call Him "Good Master" in the GK? In the GK I can only find the word for 'teacher,' as used in the sense one who teaches the truths of God. What am I missing?
     
  11. The Biblicist

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    What good would it do even if a master at Greek said you were wrong???? You would simply ignore it, and go at from another angle.

    I have three years Greek in college and two years in Seminary along with Latin and Hebrew. However, as I said, that is meaningless to guys like you. You will simply assert the same error from another angle.
     
  12. Heavenly Pilgrim

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    Biblicist, what matters how many years you spent in a sectarian school? This is a debate not show and tell.:wavey:

    Every denomination has their GK scholars, and they often disagree, so why cannot I disagree if I feel we are being hoodwinked by one tooting his own horn? Either the notion of "Good" before "Master" is in there, and the word "God" is in the last half of the verse, or they are not. There well may be discrepancies in different GK manuscripts as well.
     
  13. DHK

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    [FONT=&quot]θεος[/FONT][FONT=&quot] g2316 n-nsm

    There is none good but one, that is God Mat.19:17
    [/FONT]
     
  14. The Biblicist

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    What absolute proud arrogancy! You are the one that demanded that I provide proof of proficiency in Greek to back up what I stated and so I did ONLY because YOU requested it. Then after meeting YOUR REQUEST you make this arrogant response!

    You obviously have no training whatseover and so your only tool is redicule.

    BTW you responded exactly as I predicted - foolishly!
     
  15. Heavenly Pilgrim

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    Great response. Your expertise is showing:applause:
     
  16. Heavenly Pilgrim

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    Mat 19:17: ὁ δὲ εἶπεν αὐτῷ, Τί με ἐρωτᾷς περὶ τοῦ ἀγαθοῦ; εἷς ἐστιν ἀγαθός. εἰ δὲ θέλεις εἰς τὴν ζωὴν εἰσελθεῖν, τήρησον τὰς ἐντολάς.
     
  17. The Biblicist

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    Do you realize there are three accounts of this discussion in the gospels. Do you really think that because some Greek texts omit "God" in Matthew's account that determines the matter?????

    There is NO TEXTUAL DISPUTE concerning Mark 10:18 and the term "God" is found there.

    There is NO TEXTUAL DISPUTE concerning Luke 18:19 and the term "God" is there.

    In all three cases the term "agathos" is found in the MASCULINE singular.

    So your argument is moot concerning Matthew's account and a different textual reading as that is the only account in which some texts omit "theos."

    If you do not understand Greek case endings the masculine ending is "os" and is declined as follows:

    os - Masculine nominative singular
    ou - Masculine Genitive singular
    o - Masculine Dative singular
    on - Masculine Accusative singular
    e - Masculine Vocative singular

    Mat 19:17: ὁ δὲ εἶπεν αὐτῷ, Τί με ἐρωτᾷς περὶ τοῦ ἀγαθοῦ;[masculine gentive singular) εἷς ἐστιν ὁ ἀγαθός.[masculine nominative singular] εἰ δὲ θέλεις εἰς τὴν ζωὴν εἰσελθεῖν, τήρησον τὰς ἐντολάς.

    So in the text above 'agathos' is found in the Masculine genitive singular and the Masculine nominative singular.
     
    #17 The Biblicist, Jan 22, 2012
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 22, 2012
  18. Heavenly Pilgrim

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    HP; The title of this thread was addressing Matt. only. My comments have been limited to the verse of the OP.





    HP: For what it is worth, the GK Lexicon I have looked at says the gender in the GK for 'agathos' in Matt. is N, not M.
    I will not argue the point with you.
     
  19. TrevorL

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    Greetings again Heavenly Pilgrim,
    I appreciate the warm welcome. It would be nice to sit down and share our experiences and interests, especially relating to the things of God. Yes Australia is a beautiful and interesting place, and Aussies are very friendly. Where I sojourn is rather idyllic, and I enjoy the company of a small group of like-minded believers in the kingdom and the Name Acts 8:5,12. But we can find true rest in Him wherever we are, and whatever our circumstances Matthew 11:25-30.

    I am interested in your forum name “Heavenly Pilgrim”. Did you take this from the life and promises to Abraham and the comment in Hebrews 11:16? I am persuaded from Genesis 13:14-15, Galatians 3:8,16,26-29 that Abraham still looked for the Kingdom of God upon the earth, rather than going to heaven as many on this Board believe. Perhaps all you are saying is that you are a pilgrim guided by heaven, walking in the true light John 12:35-36.

    Yes I agree, but I was suggesting that some use Matthew 19:17 to claim that Jesus here is teaching his own Divinity. I believe he is drawing attention to the Father’s Divinity and goodness, and in contrast he was conscious of his own humanity and weakness, and utter dependence upon His Father.

    Jesus submitted to the baptism of John and part of John’s teaching is revealed in Isaiah:
    Matthew 3:14-15 (KJV): 14 But John forbad him, saying, I have need to be baptized of thee, and comest thou to me? 15 And Jesus answering said unto him, Suffer it to be so now: for thus it becometh us to fulfil all righteousness. Then he suffered him.
    Isaiah 40:6-8 (KJV): 6 The voice said, Cry. And he said, What shall I cry? All flesh is grass, and all the goodliness thereof is as the flower of the field: 7 The grass withereth, the flower fadeth: because the spirit of the LORD bloweth upon it: surely the people is grass. 8 The grass withereth, the flower fadeth: but the word of our God shall stand for ever.
    In Jesus was combined both the flesh of humanity which is mortal, perishing and the word of God which endures for ever, and his humanity produced humility, service and dependence upon God the Father. Jesus is the Servant of God Isaiah 40-53 and the Son of God Luke 1:35, John 1:14, 20:31, Romans 1:1-4,16-17.

    Kind regards
    Trevor
     
  20. Heavenly Pilgrim

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    HP: Trevor, the inspiration for Heavenly Pilgrim indeed came from Heb. We are indeed on a short journey through this life.
    I do not look for heaven on this earth, because God said that everything that is seen is temporal and will be destroyed.
    What is interesting to me is the clear discrepancies between GK manuscripts and the manner in which it is translated. I suppose I will have to just put a question mark by that verse in Matt. and wait for answers to my questions.

    Although I clearly believe in the Divinity of Jesus Christ, it might appear to me that some translators might have been trying a little too hard to make that point in these passages when the thrust was on that which was 'good' in relationship to the question asked, i.e., the law been 'good', and not on God being 'Good' although we know that God is indeed Good.

    That is simply a possibility in my mind, and I am not stating anything concrete.
     

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