Translation Project: Col 1:9-14

06Jun09

It’s the end of our second week translating through Colossians. Here’s my translation for this week:

9 Because of this indeed we, since that day when we heard, are not ceasing from praying and asking on your behalf, so that you might be filled with the knowledge of God’s will in all wisdom and spiritual insight, 10 to walk worthy of the Lord in all desire to please, in every good work bearing fruit and growing in the knowledge of God, 11 in all strength being strengthened by means of the power of his glory for all steadfastness and patience. With joy 12 giving thanks to the Father — to the one who is making us fit to share the place of the saints in the light — 13 who saved us out of the authority of the darkness and removed us into the kingdom of the Son, which is the kingdom of his love, 14 in whom we have deliverance, the forgiveness of sins.

A few thoughts/questions:

V. 11: I’m interested to see what you’ve done with δυνάμει δυναμούμενοι. It seems a little redundant to say, “in all strength being strengthened.” How did you preserve the repetition?

V. 11: “By means of” is a rare gloss for κατά; how did you take it?

V. 12: ᾽Υμᾶς or ἡμᾶς? You or us? I went with “us,” because it seemed more likely theologically.

V. 12: I took τῆς ἀγάπης αὐτοῦ (“of his love”), as genitive of apposition renaming the kingdom. Should it instead be something like, “the kingdom of his love’s Son?”

I look forward to hearing your translations and insights.

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4 Responses to “Translation Project: Col 1:9-14”

  1. 1 FlorenceKuek

    1:9 For this reason we also, from the day we heard it, have not ceased praying and asking on your behalf, so that you may be filled with the true knowledge of his will, in all wisdom and spiritual discernment;
    1:10 (so as) to walk in a manner worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing, bearing fruit in all good work and growing in the knowledge of God.
    1:11 (May you be) strengthened with all power, according to his glorious might, unto all endurance and patience, with joy
    1:12 giving thanks to the Father, who has enabled you to be sharers of the inheritance of the saints in light.
    1:13 who (has) delivered us from the power of darkness and transferred (us) into the kingdom of his beloved Son,
    1:14 in whom we have the redemption, the forgiveness of sins.

    Discussions of John’s questions:
    V. 11: I’m interested to see what you’ve done with δυνάμει δυναμούμενοι. It seems a little redundant to say, “in all strength being strengthened.” How did you preserve the repetition?
    • we can use the synonym of “strength,” i.e.; “power” or “might.”
    V. 11: “By means of” is a rare gloss for κατά; how did you take it?
    • “kata” w/ genitive = “down from;” w/ accusative = “according to”
    V. 12: ᾽Υμᾶς or ἡμᾶς? You or us? I went with “us,” because it seemed more likely theologically.
    • bruce metzger’s textual commentary on greek new testament comments that “hemas” might be an assimilation to v.13. Thus, “hymas” is preferred.
    V. 13: I took τῆς ἀγάπης αὐτοῦ (”of his love”), as genitive of apposition renaming the kingdom. Should it instead be something like, “the kingdom of his love’s Son?”
    • literal translation = “into the kingdom of the Son of his love”

    My own notes:
    1. Again, there was difficulty in breaking up the sentence. The Greek runs from v.9 through v.11, but it is quite difficult to keep the English sentence go beyond v.10.
    2. Is “pneumatike” in v.9 modifying “synesei” or both “sophia” and “synesei?”
    3. “Meta charas” at the end of v.11 is most probably the beginning of v.12, since there is a period mark after “makrothymian.” ESV, KJV, RSV relate it to “endurance and patience (v.11);” while NRS, NIV, NAS relate it to “giving thanks (v.12).”
    4. The Father created the terms and enabled believers to be sharers of the heavenly inheritance, by means of the deliverance in His Son, and the transference of believers into His own kingdom.
    5. Only in the Son one can claim redemption, namely the forgiveness of sins.

  2. 2 Andrew Bowden

    In light of this, ever since we heard about you, we, along with him (Epaphraditus), pray unceasingly for you. We ask that God might fill you with the knowledge of his will by giving you all spiritual wisdom and understanding. Having prayed this, may you then be able to live a life worthy of the Lord, pleasing him in every way, bearing fruit in every good work, and increasing in your knowledge of God. And, may you be powerfully strengthened by his glorious might so that you may joyfully endure any situation with patience. And we give thanks to the Father who counted you worthy to have a share in the inheritance of the saints in the kingdom of light. For he rescued us from the dominion of darkness and transferred us to the kingdom of his beloved son, in whom we have the redemption, the forgivness of our sins.

    I also thought I would inlcude this passage from this message (an idea I got from Dr. Black, I find it helpful to compare various translations)

    9-12Be assured that from the first day we heard of you, we haven’t stopped praying for you, asking God to give you wise minds and spirits attuned to his will, and so acquire a thorough understanding of the ways in which God works. We pray that you’ll live well for the Master, making him proud of you as you work hard in his orchard. As you learn more and more how God works, you will learn how to do your work. We pray that you’ll have the strength to stick it out over the long haul—not the grim strength of gritting your teeth but the glory-strength God gives. It is strength that endures the unendurable and spills over into joy, thanking the Father who makes us strong enough to take part in everything bright and beautiful that he has for us.

    13-14God rescued us from dead-end alleys and dark dungeons. He’s set us up in the kingdom of the Son he loves so much, the Son who got us out of the pit we were in, got rid of the sins we were doomed to keep repeating.

    My own notes:
    1. Isn’t it interesting how many “all’s” and “every’s” there is in this passage… “all wisdom”(v 9), “always pleasing him” (v 10), “in every work” (v 10), “with all power (v 11), for “all endurance” (v 11). It seems that Paul is not afraid in his prayers to ask for big things. He doesn’t mince words, but prays exactly what he hopes to see happen.

    2. The linguistic ties are fascinating in this passage compared to the previous one. In v 6 Paul stated that the gospel is “karpoforoumenon” and “auxanomenon” in all the world. In v 10 he prays that they too might “karpoforountes” and “auxanomenoi”. It seems as if what Paul is getting at is “Just as the word has been increasing a bearing fruit in all the world, may it also do so in you.” It has done this “from the day you heard it (v 6) and so Paul has prayed for them “from the day we heard.” In v. 6 they have “epegnote”, while in v. 10 Paul prays that they might grow in their “epignosei”

    Why do you all think that Pual in v. 12 refers to the “Kingdom of light”? This seems like a rare term, since the usual term in scripture is “kingdom of God” or “kingdom of heaven”.

    Many translations seem to make a clear break after v. 14 and make verses 15-20 an altogether different section, calling the latter verses a Christ hymn. Can such a clear break be made? It seems like v 15 flows directly from the context of 13 and 14, with the relative pronouns, and that a break might be artificial.

    I find it very challenging that the mighty strength we are empowered with is for the purpose of endurance and patience. Often I imagine power to be given for the purpose of dramatic spirtual feats, for challenging the prophets of Baal on Mt. Carmel, for preaching on mars hill in Athens. All of this power, all of this might, however, is given so that we can patiently endure. Endurance may not look very spiritual, it may not win any awards or recieve any recognition, but God highly values it and gives every provision to enable it in my life.

  3. 3 John Nyota

    12 For this reason also, from the day we heard, we have not stopped praying for you and asking that you may be filled with the knowledge of his will in all spiritual wisdom and understanding: 10 so that you might walk in a manner worthy of the Lord in order to please Him in all respects, bearing fruit in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God. 11 being strengthened with all power ,according to his glorious might, for all endurance and patience. With joyfully 12 giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of the saints in light 13 who has delivered us from the domain of darkness and transferred us to the kingdom of his beloved Son, 14 in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.

    Comments.

    1.In the previous section Paul and his colleagues offered thanksgiving for the Colossians, in this passage they are offering an intercessory prayer for them.

    2. Basically the intercession is for the discernment of God’s will and the power to do it. So that they might possess true spiritual insight. This should lead to behavior that is pleasing to the Lord.

    3. The power that can enable them live this kind of life can only come from God’s glorious might.

    4. they should also give thanks to God for His glorious acts: for he has delivered them from the power of darkness and has transferred into the kingdom of his beloved Son.

  4. 4 Enoch

    For this very reason, from the day we heard (it),
    we have not cease from praying for you and asking that you may be filled (with) the knowledge of his will
    in all wisdom and understanding to a spiritual thing to walk worthy of the Lord with full desire to please (Him),
    in all good work bearing fruit and growing to the knowledge of God,
    in all power strengthened according to his glorious might unto full patience and endurance with joy.
    (We) give thanks to (the) Father
    who make us fit for the portion of the share of the saints publicly
    (and) who saved us from the power of the darkness and transfered us into the kingdom of his beloved son,
    in whom we have the deliverance (from and) the forgiveness of our sins.

    Sorry for the late response. My apology.
    I found repetition of “in all” interesting in rhetoric. It seems to me that those are emphasizing “you may be filled (with) the knowledge of his will.”
    Let me argue some even though my Greek is worse than everyone else. I want us to DISCUSS, not just to leave a comment 🙂

    To Adam,
    1. I like δυνάμει δυναμούμενοι to be Andy’s. How do you think?
    2. I appreciate you that you brought the textual problem. I prefer US like you.
    3. From last week, about doulos, John MacArthur did a good job in the first chapter of his book, Gospel according to Jesus. (3rd edition, 2008) In the endnote, he introduces one good article, too.

    To Flo.
    You cannot say the following. “Meta charas” is most probably the beginning of v.12, since there is a PERIOD MARK after “makrothymian.” It is because the manuscripts do not have period mark. However, if you want to argue that “Meta charas” is most probably the beginning of v.12, you should argue it with other reasons like an internal proof. I put “Meta charas” at the end of the v.11.

    To Andy
    1. I am glad to see you and your wife yesterday. Anyway, I also found repetition of “karpoforoumenon” and “auxanomenon” and “epegno-” mirroring with the previous section. There are more including will(theilema), euxariteo, proseuxomai, etc. Why does Paul repeats those same words you think?
    2. I translated “Kingdom of light” as “publicly,” which I got it from the dictionary on the back of the UBS NT under potos(light). I think this fits better. What do you think?


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