Saturday, May 28, 2011

Symmetry

In honour of my Greek exam today, here is another verse translation. You will find an expert opinion of this verse here - Quadrilateral Thoughts

Ἁρα οὐν ὡς δι' ἑνος παραπτωματος εἰς παντας ἀνθρωπους εἰς κατακριμα, οὑτω και δι' ἑνος δικαιωματος εἰς παντας ἀνθρωπους εἰς δικαιωσιν ζωης.
Romans 5:18

ἀρα οὐν ὡς - so therefore as
δι' - short for δια, the final α is dropped because a vowel starts the next word. Means through.
ἑνος - one (genitive case to match the noun coming up - the case refines the meaning of δια)
παραπτωματος - error or sinful act
εἰς - this is wiggly preposition and can mean different things. into or for.
παντας - all
ἀνθρωπους - people (not gender specific!) (from a meaning point of view - grammatically it has gender)
εἰς - this word again. into or for
κατακριμα -condemnation
so far we have - so therefore as through one error for all people into judgement
Now look at the symmetry of the rest of the verse after the two joining words.
οὑτως - in this way
και - and, but here it means also.

δι' - as above (through)
ἑνος - as above (one)
δικαιωματος - right deed
εἰς παντας ἀνυρωπους εἰς - for all people into
δικαιωσιν - acquittal or justification
ζωης - of life. What 'acquittal of life' means is open to interpretation I think. The acquittal that leads to life?

So my translation would be - so therefore as through one error for all people into condemnation, in this way also, through one right deed for all people into acquittal of life.

This obviously needs a bit of work to sound like proper English. I would choose to preserve the symmetry or repetition in the verse in the English. Perhaps:
So, therefore, as one error brought all people into condemnation, in the same way one right deed brought all people into acquittal and life.

* As I read it again, the big flaw that I have brought in is an assumption of past tense. It would be just as correct, or even better to say  'So, therefore, as one error brings all people into condemnation, in the same way one right deed brings all people into acquittal and life.'

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