"Wives" or "Women"

Discussion in '2000-02 Archive' started by Aaron, Aug 5, 2002.

  1. Aaron

    Aaron
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    1 Timothy 3:11, Women must likewise be dignified, not malicious gossips, but temperate, faithful in all things. (NASB)

    1 Timothy 3:11 Even so must their wives be grave, not slanderers, sober, faithful in all things. (KJV)

    Which is the more accurate rendition, and why?
     
  2. Chris Temple

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    The word translated woman is guneµ; a woman. The NASB is more literal; the KJV may be more accurate, even though it is using dynamic equivalence to provide the meaning in context ;)
     
  3. Abiyah

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    In my opinion, the NASB is the most accurate
    translation. It has been eons since I took
    Greek, and I basically neglected it for Hebrew
    over the years, but gunaikeios, if I am correct,
    indicates women in general. However, because
    the verse is in context with writing of deacons'
    responsibilities, I can understand why the KJV
    translators used the word, wives.
     
  4. Farmer's Wife

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    The King James Bible is correct, of course! [​IMG] Why? You don't have to know Greek to figure that one out...just use plain ol' common sense. ;)

    "...not malicious gossips..."...Does that mean women can be gossips...as long as we're not malicious about it? :D
     
  5. DocCas

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    1 Timothy 3:11 the Greek for "wives" reads "γυναικας." In Greek this word contains a grammatical indicator which we, in English, would call the "possessive." It gives the sense of "belonging to." It is clear that the antecedent of γυναικασ is the διακονους or "deacons" of verse 9. As the word for "deacons" is masculine, and the word for "wives" is feminine and in the sense of "belonging to" we have to understand that the women belong to the deacons in the sense of their possessing them. Now, if you translate it "wives" you have no problem for in that culture a wife was thought to belong to the husband, but if you translate it "women" you introduce an ambiguity. Do the women belong to the deacons in the sense of being their wives, their daughters, their servants, or possibly their slaves? It seems to me the KJV did a much better job of making sure we understand it is the wives of the deacons in view here, just as the wives of the pastors (Gk: επισκοπης of verse 1) are also in view, not their servants or slaves.

    [ August 05, 2002, 01:49 PM: Message edited by: DocCas ]
     
  6. TomVols

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    Should be "wives" (as in NKJV, NIV, etc.). This is one of those instances where literal (NASB) does not convey the true depth of meaning. The Greek word here is used in 3:2 and 3:12 to refer to wives. Context is always a great help when discerning the meaning, isn't it?
     
  7. TomVols

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    Is it even possible for women to be gossips without being malicious? :D :eek: :D :eek: :D
     
  8. Farmer's Wife

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    I have a 'greek' question. I speak and understand English only. From my observation, three different posters have quoted what they call the "greek word" for "wives". Each word LOOKS like a different word to me. :confused: So, my question is...why is this? Are y'all all speaking the same 'greek'? :confused: :confused: [​IMG]
     
  9. ChristianCynic

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    Does the KJV mean women need not "be grave, not slanderers, sober, faithful in all things" unless they are "their wives?"
     
  10. HankD

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    Hi Farmer's Wife...

    DocCas is correct because he lifted it straight from the parsed text without transliterating it.
    Also he makes the best judgement (IMO).

    Another used the root.

    Others transliterated (substituting Greek letters with English) as best they could.

    HankD

    [ August 05, 2002, 02:24 PM: Message edited by: HankD ]
     
  11. Angie Miller

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    Well that is an interesting thread, I think God is definetly telling wives to be a quite spirit in regard to their Husbands spirituality. To stand beside them and show them how to be a good Christian instead of nagging them. I think we all would agree that nagging anyone does not show good judgement. :D It tends to make others go in exactly the oposite direction.
    Anyway wives, women, whatever the case LOL we should be of a quite and gentle spirit to everyone not just husbands. As everyone should be, we should all be calm and quite and show not just tell our Christian walk. ;)
    I know this response is a little off the track,but this is what came to mind! LOL [​IMG] Love in Christ Angie
     
  12. Pastork

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    DocCas,

    I would be interested in some more detail regarding the grammatical indicator in gunaikas which makes it act as a "possessive". Also, if it functions in a way similar to our "possessive", then wouldn't it be referring to something possessed by the women themselves? Why does it need to have an antecedent then? Besides, this is a noun, and isn't it pronouns that have antecedents? And how would gunaikas differ from gunaikeios ? Could you include references to Greek grammars/grammarians (e.g., Zerwick, BDF, BAGD, etc.)? I am interested in learning more about your position on this.

    Pastork

    [ August 14, 2002, 12:59 PM: Message edited by: Pastork ]
     
  13. Pastork

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    Aaron,

    In my opinion gunaikas could be translated either as "wives" or "women" in this verse. A good contextual case can be made for both, although I think the case for "wives" might be slightly stronger. At any rate, I don't think that DocCas is correct about the grammatical issues. He certainly hasn't offered a defense for his position in the past week, and what he previously argued doesn't make sense to me.

    Pastork
     
  14. Don

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    If I may?

    I'm not anywhere near most of y'all's level of understanding with the Greek; but I know a tad (and just a tad) about context.

    So PastorK, the emphasis here is not on Doc Cassidy to prove why the Greek word here is best translated "wives"; the emphasis here is on you to prove why it would be better translated "women" (and yes, I know you already mentioned that wives has a stronger meaning here).

    The reason I say this is the context of the passage in which the word is being used; i.e., vs.8-10 are talking about deacons; and v.12 specifically charges the deacons to be the husbands of one wife.

    Why, then, would there be an interjection of "women" in the middle of these two? (v.11) Clearly, we're not talking about women in general, but women in relation to deacons.

    The only other recourse is to state that the word "deacons" in vs.8 and 10 should be literally translated "servants," which would help in literally translating the word in v.11 as women. Deacons are servants, and women can be servants; so if we "generalize" the words and context, it all fits together.

    EXCEPT that v.12 knocks that out of the water. If we say that the previous verses refer to servants instead of specific positions in the church, then v.12 says the servants must be the husbands of one wife.

    So we're back to v.10 apparently referring to women who are related to the deacons in some way.

    In my mind, it's a contextual thing, whether it's in Greek or English.
     
  15. Pastork

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    Don,

    I don't disagree with you, and I am not arguing for translating the text to read "women" versus "wives". I also agree that the real issue here is a contextual one, which is the very point I was making in my last post. As far as who has the burden of proof, I would argue that DocCas has assumed a burden of proof when he has put forth an argument. He seemed to think that the Greek word and grammar were conclusive, and I asked for clarification because what he said made no sense to me. I waited for a week, but there was no reply. The Greek grammar was only an issue in the first place because he brought it up. How does this place a burden of proof on me on the issue? If you want me to assume the burden of proof for my own assertions, I will gladly do so. For example, I would prefer the "wives" reading for the same contextual reasons that you have given.

    Pastork

    [ August 18, 2002, 01:14 AM: Message edited by: Pastork ]
     
  16. HankD

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    Just an opinion.

    I think we are straining at the gnat.

    "grammatical indicator" says to me that there is an area of shared dynamic between grammar and context, much of which has probably been lost over the centuries, koine Greek being a "dead" language.

    One might be able to get a limited sense of this dynamic by using the koine text extensively.

    I believe DocCas explained in what sense he meant "grammatical indicator" in his first post and that is why he is not answering you.

    Or maybe he has gone on vacation? [​IMG]

    HankD
     
  17. Helen

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    Actually, in this verse, unless it is permissable for any female to be undignified, a malicious gossip, intemperate, or unfaithful in anything, does it matter whether the word is women or wives?

    Just a non-grammatical thought...
     
  18. Pastork

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    HankD,

    I respectfully submit that DocCas did not explain what he meant by "a grammatical indicator" which he said was contained in the word gunaikas . Nor did he explain how it could be a possessive, yet not desribe what is possesed by the gunaikas . How does gunaikas act as a possessive so that it describes something possessed by the deacons? If it was going to denote something possessed by the deacons, then wouldn't the word for "deacons" be a "possessive"? This doesn't make sense to me. I also am not familiar with his use of the term 'antecedent' in this connection. This is a term usually used to describe the substantive or noun to which a pronoun refers. Also, their is a related Greek word that does function similarly to a "possessive" in English, but Paul doesn't use that word ( gunaikeios , 'of or pertaining to women', 'female'). And if he had used this word he would have been describing something which belonged to the women themselves, not to the deacons mentioned earlier in the text. Now, DocCas may be correct about such a "grammatical indicator" being present in the word gunaikas , but if he is I don't know what it would be. Thus I asked for an explanation for his assertions. Maybe he has a more sophisticated knowledge of Greek than I, or maybe he is simply wrong, which I suspect is the case. I would need a more detailed explanation from him to be sure. And the reason it matters to me is that if he is correct, then the grammar really does decide the issue. This is something I would really like to know if it is true. It would help to end a lot of debate for some Christians.

    Pastork
     
  19. HankD

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    Dear Pastork,

    Well, I could answer your objections with my own opinions comcerning what he is saying.
    but I better not try to second guess Doc.

    Just have to wait and see if he answers.

    HankD
     
  20. HankD

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    Hi Helen,

    You asked...

    Some would say yes, some would say no.

    Yes, because (if DocCas is correct about the "possesive indicator" part) and the word should be "women", then this passage would apply to all the women in the deacon's household and not just his wife for an individual to qualify as a deacon. On the other hand, if Paul meant "wife" then these qualities would apply to her only and a wild and crazy daughter or a gosippy mother or mother-in-law would be OK and he would still qualify.

    As I see it.

    How's that for straining at the gnat?

    You asked [​IMG]

    HankD

    [ August 18, 2002, 11:08 PM: Message edited by: HankD ]
     

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