Wednesday, April 2, 2014

The Now of Resurrection

I have had the joy of being part of the NEXT Church Conference in Minneapolis this week. Therefore, I have been unable to work on translating the long text of John 11:1-45.

I would like to offer this thought. I have found this to be a very powerful text for funerals, particularly the interchange between Jesus and Martha. When she says, "Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died," I hear a very familiar tendency among those who are grieving to regret that past. It is a time of "woulda, coulda, shoulda," when we think of harsh words that we would love to retract or soft words that we wish we had expressed. What strikes me is that asking those questions and expressing those regrets is really a sign of love. Those regrets should be affirmed, not in a way of condemning, but in a way of accepting that we live in the forward march of time and simply cannot go back and un-do what has been done. That is also why I always include at least part of a prayer of confession in a funeral service.
Jesus' response to Martha is, "Your brother will rise again." She hears this as - it seems to me - a confessional formula and immediately goes into her Confirmation mode by saying the right doctrinal thing: "I know he will rise again in the resurrection on the last day." I'll bet she got a gold star on the chart once for getting that one right! What I hear in that response is that Martha is willing to accept resurrection as some abstract thing that happens so far in the future that it has no meaningful impact on her moment. Maybe I'm wrong about Martha, but I know that when I think of resurrection that is often how I think of it. "Yeah, sure, I believe in the resurrection of the dead." So what? It's out of my hands and I'll be dead when it happens or if it doesn't happen, so ... really, so what?
But Jesus is not talking about an abstract doctrine of an abstract future that has no bearing on the now. At this moment, I imagine this scene looking like this. Martha looks behind with regret. Martha looks forward with some measure of hope. But, Jesus cups her face in his hands and looks her in the eyes and says, "I am the resurrection and the life." I am - here and now - I am - not was, not will be - I am the resurrection and the life.
It seems that to locate the resurrection in the future, near or distant, is to misunderstand what it means that, in Christ, "the Word became flesh and dwelt among us."
As we journey through the season of Lent, we journey in the company of the resurrection and the life, Jesus Christ. May your journey be blessed with the presence of life itself, even in times of grief, regret, or forlorn hope.
MD

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

The Blind Accusing the Blind

Below is a rough translation and some initial comments regarding John 9. Because this is such a long text, I am focusing on the healing event itself and Jesus’ encounter with the healed man after he was cast out of the temple. Your comments are welcomed.

1 Καὶ παράγων εἶδεν ἄνθρωπον τυφλὸν ἐκ γενετῆς.
And passing by he saw a blind man out of birth.
παράγων: PAPart nsm, παράγω, 1) pass by  1a) to lead past, lead by
εἶδεν: AAI 3s, ὁράω, 1) to see with the eyes
1.The word “blind” is used 17x in John, 15 of them in this chapter. The other two uses are in 10:21 and 11:37. In both of the latter cases, others are commenting that Jesus opened the eyes of the blind.

2 καὶ ἠρώτησαν αὐτὸν οἱ μαθηταὶ αὐτοῦ λέγοντες, Ῥαββί, τίς ἥμαρτεν, οὗτος ἢ οἱ γονεῖς αὐτοῦ, ἵνα τυφλὸς γεννηθῇ;
And his disciples questioned him saying to him, “Rabbi, who sinned, this one or his parents, in order that he should be born blind?”
ἠρώτησαν: AAI 3p, ἐρωτάω, 1) to question 
λέγοντες: PAPart npm, λέγω, 1) to say, to speak
ἥμαρτεν: AAI 3s, ἁμαρτάνω, 1) to be without a share in  2) to miss the mark  3) to err, be mistaken  4) to miss or wander from the path of uprightness and  honor, to do or go wrong  5) to wander from the law of God, violate God's law, sin 
γεννηθῇ: APSubj, 3s, γεννάω, 1) of men who fathered children  1a) to be born 
1. I’m curious that the lexical meaning of ἁμαρτάνω, which I captured from www.greekbible.com, has numerous definitions before finally saying “sin.” Yet, in the previous chapter, when Jesus says, “Let one without sin cast the first stone,” the same resource as the definition of ἀν-αμάρτητος as 1) sinless  1a) of one who has not sinned  1b) of one who cannot sin.
2. I’m ready to re-think whether the word “sin” has become too familiar and, frankly, too religious in our translations and common discourse to be meaningful. It seems to be a very dynamic word, not only when Paul speaks of the “power of sin” as some kind of real bondage on people’s lives, but even here. Maybe if we translated it, “Whose life was so errant that a baby was born blind as a result? This man? Or, his parents?” it might feel less like an ancient (and frankly, weirdly superstitious) debate and more like a question about some kind of cause-and-effect power in the world.
3. Or, maybe this question is simply reflective of some bad theology. The oft-repeated Scriptural principle that the “sins of the parents are visited on the children to the 3rd and 4th generation” could mean something very different than, “if this man is blind, it is a sign that either he or his parents sinned.” It could mean: “A generation of parents polluted the waters with runoff from mining near their rivers and now many generations of children have been born with defects.” In that sense, sin is a power with real effects, but not a direct cause-and-effect.

3 ἀπεκρίθη Ἰησοῦς, Οὔτε οὗτος ἥμαρτεν οὔτε οἱ γονεῖς αὐτοῦ, ἀλλ' ἵνα φανερωθῇ τὰ ἔργα τοῦ θεοῦ ἐν αὐτῷ.
Jesus answered, “Neither this one sinned nor his parents, but in order that the works of God may be made apparent in him.”
ἀπεκρίθη: API 3s, ἀποκρίνομαι, 1) to give an answer to a question proposed, to answer
ἥμαρτεν: AAI 3s, ἁμαρτάνω, 1) to be without a share in  2) to miss the mark  3) to err, be mistaken  4) to miss or wander from the path of uprightness and  honour, to do or go wrong  5) to wander from the law of God, violate God's law, sin 
φανερωθῇ: APSubj 3s, φανερόω, 1) to make manifest or visible or known what has been hidden or unknown, to manifest, whether by words, or deeds, or in any other way
1. This sentence is constructed a bit curiously. Some translations add “but this happened in order that” to smooth it out. That addition assumes the subject of the sentence is the blindness.
2. But, imagine that the one who inserted the period after “in him” was mistaken and that this verse and part of the next are actually one sentence. To wit: “Neither this man nor his parents sinned. But in order that the works of God may be made apparent in him, it is necessary for us to work the works of the one having sent me while it is day. Night comes when nobody is able to work.” Then the subject shifts from the man’s blindness/blame to Jesus’ need to work while there is light – or, before the blindness of night rests on everyone and there is no more opportunity to work.
3. I don’t know if I’m ready to go to the mat for the interpretation that I just suggested, but I do have a little trouble following the transition than happens in vv.3-4 and I do think that “blindness,” “day,” “light,” and “night” are all family terms here.

4 ἡμᾶς δεῖ ἐργάζεσθαι τὰ ἔργα τοῦ πέμψαντός με ἕως ἡμέρα ἐστίν: ἔρχεται νὺξ ὅτε οὐδεὶς δύναται ἐργάζεσθαι.
It is necessary [for] us to work the works of the one having sent me while it is day; Night comes when nobody is able to work.
δεῖ: PAI 3s, δέω, 1) to bind tie, fasten 
ἐργάζεσθαι: PMInf, ἐργάζομαι, 1) to work, labor, do work 
πέμψαντός: AAPart gsm, πέμπω, 1) to send 
ἐστίν: PAI 3s, εἰμί, 1) to be, to exist, to happen, to be present
ἔρχεται:  PMI 3s, ἔρχομαι, 1) to come  1a) of persons 
δύναται:  PMI 3s, δύναμαι, 1) to be able, have power whether by virtue of one's own ability and  resources,
ἐργάζεσθαι: PMInf, ἐργάζομαι, 1) to work, labour, do work 
1. I often grouse about how the verb δεῖ is reduced to “must” in many translations. Its frequent use in the gospels seems to denote something between a destiny and a calling, with a feeling of necessity. In order to be consistent, I use “it is necessary” here, since the cases of δεῖ that I am thinking of are almost always in the 3rd person singular. However, in this verse δεῖ takes an accusative direct object – us (ἡμᾶς) – which is awkward. So, I added a preposition and made it an indirect object. To keep more strictly with the grammar, it could read, “It behooves us to work” or something like that.

5 ὅταν ἐν τῷ κόσμῳ , φῶς εἰμι τοῦ κόσμου.
While I am in the world, I am a light of the world.
: PASubj 1s, εἰμί, 1) to be, to exist, to happen, to be present
εἰμι: PAI 1s, εἰμί, 1) to be, to exist, to happen, to be present
1. I know that we like for Jesus to say, “I am the light of the world,” but there is no definite article for “light” in this verse. For those that need that definite article, there is John 8:12.
2. The clause, “While (or “As long as”) I am in the world,” is interesting in that it seems to qualify Jesus’ identity as a light of the world to a specific time of being in the world. One might argue that – as the eternal Logos or as the resurrected one – Jesus is always in the world in some way, hence always the light of the world. But, that would make this qualifying phrase unnecessary.
3. In my quick overview, I see “light” appearing in John’s gospel 23 times – all of them in cc. 1-12. That begs the question of what c.13 signifies with regard to the role of light in John’s gospel.

6 ταῦτα εἰπὼν ἔπτυσεν χαμαὶ καὶ ἐποίησεν πηλὸν ἐκ τοῦ πτύσματος, καὶ ἐπέχρισεν αὐτοῦ τὸν πηλὸν ἐπὶ τοὺς ὀφθαλμοὺς
Having said these things he spat groundward and made clay out of the spittle, and spread to him the clay on the eyes.
εἰπὼν: AAPart nsm, λέγω, 1) to say, to speak
ἔπτυσεν: AAI 3s, πτύω, 1) to spit 
ἐποίησεν: AAI 3s, ποιέω, 1) to make 1a) with the names of things made, to produce, construct,  form, fashion, etc. 
ἐπέχρισεν: AAI 3s, ἐπιχρίω, 1) to spread on, anoint anything upon anything 
1. I know that “groundward” sounds kind of dumb, but χαμαὶ is an adverb and I’m trying to express it as a way of qualifying the verb “spit.”  

7 καὶ εἶπεν αὐτῷ, Υπαγε νίψαι εἰς τὴν κολυμβήθραν τοῦ Σιλωάμ {ὃ ἑρμηνεύεται Ἀπεσταλμένος}. ἀπῆλθεν οὖν καὶ ἐνίψατο, καὶ ἦλθεν βλέπων.
And said to him, Go wash in the pool of the Siloam (which is interpreted “Sent”). Therefore he went and washed, and returned seeing.
εἶπεν: AAI 3s, λέγω, 1) to say, to speak
Υπαγε: PAImpv 2s, ὑπάγω, 1) to lead under, bring under  2) to withdraw one's self, to go away, depart
νίψαι: AMImpv 2s, νίπτω, 1) to wash  2) to wash one's self 
ἑρμηνεύεται: PPI 3s, ἑρμηνεύω, 1) to explain in words, expound 
ἀπῆλθεν: AAI 3s, ἀπέρχομαι, 1) to go away, depart 
ἐνίψατο: AMI 3s, νίπτω, 1) to wash  2) to wash one's self 
ἦλθεν: AAI 3s, ἔρχομαι, 1) to come 
βλέπων: PAPart nsm, βλέπω, 1) to see, discern, of the bodily eye
1. The other uses of “wash” (νίπτω) in John, outside of this chapter, are in c.13 and refer to washing another’s feet.
2. I am translating ἦλθεν as “returned” to show its relationship to ἀπῆλθεν, “went away.”

 8Οἱ οὖν γείτονες καὶ οἱ θεωροῦντες αὐτὸν τὸ πρότερον ὅτι προσαίτης ἦν ἔλεγον, Οὐχ οὗτός ἐστιν ὁ καθήμενος καὶ προσαιτῶν; 9ἄλλοι ἔλεγον ὅτι Οὗτός ἐστιν: ἄλλοι ἔλεγον, Οὐχί, ἀλλὰ ὅμοιος αὐτῷ ἐστιν. ἐκεῖνος ἔλεγεν ὅτι Ἐγώ εἰμι. 10ἔλεγον οὖν αὐτῷ, Πῶς [οὖν] ἠνεῴχθησάν σου οἱ ὀφθαλμοί; 11ἀπεκρίθη ἐκεῖνος, Ὁ ἄνθρωπος ὁ λεγόμενος Ἰησοῦς πηλὸν ἐποίησεν καὶ ἐπέχρισέν μου τοὺς ὀφθαλμοὺς καὶ εἶπέν μοι ὅτι Υπαγε εἰς τὸν Σιλωὰμ καὶ νίψαι: ἀπελθὼν οὖν καὶ νιψάμενος ἀνέβλεψα. 12καὶ εἶπαν αὐτῷ, Ποῦ ἐστιν ἐκεῖνος; λέγει, Οὐκ οἶδα. 13Ἄγουσιν αὐτὸν πρὸς τοὺς Φαρισαίους τόν ποτε τυφλόν. 14ἦν δὲ σάββατον ἐν ἧ ἡμέρᾳ τὸν πηλὸν ἐποίησεν ὁ Ἰησοῦς καὶ ἀνέῳξεν αὐτοῦ τοὺς ὀφθαλμούς. 15πάλιν οὖν ἠρώτων αὐτὸν καὶ οἱ Φαρισαῖοι πῶς ἀνέβλεψεν. ὁ δὲ εἶπεν αὐτοῖς, Πηλὸν ἐπέθηκέν μου ἐπὶ τοὺς ὀφθαλμούς, καὶ ἐνιψάμην, καὶ βλέπω. 16ἔλεγον οὖν ἐκ τῶν Φαρισαίων τινές, Οὐκ ἔστιν οὗτος παρὰ θεοῦ ὁ ἄνθρωπος, ὅτι τὸ σάββατον οὐ τηρεῖ. ἄλλοι [δὲ] ἔλεγον, Πῶς δύναται ἄνθρωπος ἁμαρτωλὸς τοιαῦτα σημεῖα ποιεῖν; καὶ σχίσμα ἦν ἐν αὐτοῖς. 17λέγουσιν οὖν τῷ τυφλῷ πάλιν, Τί σὺ λέγεις περὶ αὐτοῦ, ὅτι ἠνέῳξέν σου τοὺς ὀφθαλμούς; ὁ δὲ εἶπεν ὅτι Προφήτης ἐστίν. 18Οὐκ ἐπίστευσαν οὖν οἱ Ἰουδαῖοι περὶ αὐτοῦ ὅτι ἦν τυφλὸς καὶ ἀνέβλεψεν, ἕως ὅτου ἐφώνησαν τοὺς γονεῖς αὐτοῦ τοῦ ἀναβλέψαντος 19καὶ ἠρώτησαν αὐτοὺς λέγοντες, Οὗτός ἐστιν ὁ υἱὸς ὑμῶν, ὃν ὑμεῖς λέγετε ὅτι τυφλὸς ἐγεννήθη; πῶς οὖν βλέπει ἄρτι; 20ἀπεκρίθησαν οὖν οἱ γονεῖς αὐτοῦ καὶ εἶπαν, Οἴδαμεν ὅτι οὗτός ἐστιν ὁ υἱὸς ἡμῶν καὶ ὅτι τυφλὸς ἐγεννήθη: 21πῶς δὲ νῦν βλέπει οὐκ οἴδαμεν, ἢ τίς ἤνοιξεν αὐτοῦ τοὺς ὀφθαλμοὺς ἡμεῖς οὐκ οἴδαμεν: αὐτὸν ἐρωτήσατε, ἡλικίαν ἔχει, αὐτὸς περὶ ἑαυτοῦ λαλήσει. 22ταῦτα εἶπαν οἱ γονεῖς αὐτοῦ ὅτι ἐφοβοῦντο τοὺς Ἰουδαίους, ἤδη γὰρ συνετέθειντο οἱ Ἰουδαῖοι ἵνα ἐάν τις αὐτὸν ὁμολογήσῃ Χριστόν, ἀποσυνάγωγος γένηται. 23διὰ τοῦτο οἱ γονεῖς αὐτοῦ εἶπαν ὅτι Ἡλικίαν ἔχει, αὐτὸν ἐπερωτήσατε. 24Ἐφώνησαν οὖν τὸν ἄνθρωπον ἐκ δευτέρου ὃς ἦν τυφλὸς καὶ εἶπαν αὐτῷ, Δὸς δόξαν τῷ θεῷ: ἡμεῖς οἴδαμεν ὅτι οὗτος ὁ ἄνθρωπος ἁμαρτωλός ἐστιν. 25ἀπεκρίθη οὖν ἐκεῖνος, Εἰ ἁμαρτωλός ἐστιν οὐκ οἶδα: ἓν οἶδα, ὅτι τυφλὸς ὢν ἄρτι βλέπω. 26εἶπον οὖν αὐτῷ, Τί ἐποίησέν σοι; πῶς ἤνοιξέν σου τοὺς ὀφθαλμούς; 27ἀπεκρίθη αὐτοῖς, Εἶπον ὑμῖν ἤδη καὶ οὐκ ἠκούσατε: τί πάλιν θέλετε ἀκούειν; μὴ καὶ ὑμεῖς θέλετε αὐτοῦ μαθηταὶ γενέσθαι; 28καὶ ἐλοιδόρησαν αὐτὸν καὶ εἶπον, Σὺ μαθητὴς εἶ ἐκείνου, ἡμεῖς δὲ τοῦ Μωϋσέως ἐσμὲν μαθηταί: 29ἡμεῖς οἴδαμεν ὅτι Μωϋσεῖ λελάληκεν ὁ θεός, τοῦτον δὲ οὐκ οἴδαμεν πόθεν ἐστίν. 30ἀπεκρίθη ὁ ἄνθρωπος καὶ εἶπεν αὐτοῖς, Ἐν τούτῳ γὰρ τὸ θαυμαστόν ἐστιν ὅτι ὑμεῖς οὐκ οἴδατε πόθεν ἐστίν, καὶ ἤνοιξέν μου τοὺς ὀφθαλμούς. 31οἴδαμεν ὅτι ἁμαρτωλῶν ὁ θεὸς οὐκ ἀκούει, ἀλλ' ἐάν τις θεοσεβὴς ᾖ καὶ τὸ θέλημα αὐτοῦ ποιῇ τούτου ἀκούει. 32ἐκ τοῦ αἰῶνος οὐκ ἠκούσθη ὅτι ἠνέῳξέν τις ὀφθαλμοὺς τυφλοῦ γεγεννημένου: 33εἰ μὴ ἦν οὗτος παρὰ θεοῦ, οὐκ ἠδύνατο ποιεῖν οὐδέν. 34ἀπεκρίθησαν καὶ εἶπαν αὐτῷ, Ἐν ἁμαρτίαις σὺ ἐγεννήθης ὅλος, καὶ σὺ διδάσκεις ἡμᾶς; καὶ ἐξέβαλον αὐτὸν ἔξω.

35   Ἤκουσεν Ἰησοῦς ὅτι ἐξέβαλον αὐτὸν ἔξω, καὶ εὑρὼν αὐτὸν εἶπεν, Σὺ πιστεύεις εἰς τὸν υἱὸν τοῦ ἀνθρώπου;
Jesus heard that they threw him out, and having seen him said, “Do you believe in the son of the man?”
Ἤκουσεν: AAI 3s, ἀκούω, 1) to be endowed with the faculty of hearing, not deaf 
ἐξέβαλον: AAI 3p, ἐκβάλλω, 1) to cast out, drive out, to send out 
εὑρὼν: AAPart nsm, εὑρίσκω, 1) to come upon, hit upon, to meet with 
εἶπεν: AAI 3s, λέγω, 1) to say, to speak
πιστεύεις: AASubj 1s, πιστεύω, 1) to think to be true, to be persuaded of, to credit, place  confidence in 
1. For an interesting intertext, remember that Jesus “cast out” (ἐκβάλλω) the money-changers from the temple in John 2:15.

36 ἀπεκρίθη ἐκεῖνος καὶ εἶπεν, Καὶ τίς ἐστιν, κύριε, ἵνα πιστεύσω εἰς αὐτόν;
The man answered and said, “And who is he, Lord, in order that I may believe in him?”
ἀπεκρίθη: API 3s, ἀποκρίνομαι, 1) to give an answer to a question proposed, to answer 
εἶπεν: AAI 3s, λέγω, 1) to say, to speak
ἐστιν: PAI 3s, εἰμί, 1) to be, to exist, to happen, to be present
πιστεύσω: AASubj 1s, πιστεύω, 1) to think to be true, to be persuaded of, to credit, place  confidence in

37 εἶπεν αὐτῷ ὁ Ἰησοῦς, Καὶ ἑώρακας αὐτὸν καὶ ὁ λαλῶν μετὰ σοῦ ἐκεῖνός ἐστιν.
Jesus said to him, “You have both seen him and the one who speaks with you is he.”
εἶπεν: AAI 3s, λέγω, 1) to say, to speak
ἑώρακας: PerfAI 2s, ὁράω, 1) to see with the eyes
λαλῶν: PAPart nsm, λαλέω, 1) to utter a voice or emit a sound  2) to speak 
ἐστιν: PAI 3s, εἰμί, 1) to be, to exist, to happen, to be present

38 ὁ δὲ ἔφη, Πιστεύω, κύριε: καὶ προσεκύνησεν αὐτῷ.
Then the man was declaring, “I believe, Lord;” and he knelt to him.
ἔφη: IAI 3s, φημί, 1) to make known one's thoughts, to declare   2) to say
Πιστεύω: PAI 1s, πιστεύω, 1) to think to be true, to be persuaded of, to credit, place  confidence in
προσεκύνησεν: AAI 3s, προσκυνέω, 1) to kiss the hand to (towards) one, in token of reverence 
1. John uses φημί instead of λέγω to describe the man’s response to Jesus. And it is in the imperfect tense, which indicates repeated past not simply a one-time simple past. Hence, “was declaring.”
2. προσκυνέω could be translated “worshiped,” but since “him” is in the dative case, “knelt” or “bowed” “to him” seems more accurate. (4:24a, for example, is a case where προσκυνέω is followed by an accusative, or direct object.) 

39καὶ εἶπεν ὁ Ἰησοῦς, Εἰς κρίμα ἐγὼ εἰς τὸν κόσμον τοῦτον ἦλθον, ἵνα οἱ μὴ βλέποντες βλέπωσιν καὶ οἱ βλέποντες τυφλοὶ γένωνται.
And Jesus said, “Into judgment I came into this world, in order that the ones who do not see may see and the ones who do see may become blind ones.”
εἶπεν: AAI 3s, λέγω, 1) to say, to speak
ἦλθον: AAI 1s, ἔρχομαι, 1) to come 
βλέποντες: PAPart npm, βλέπω, 1) to see, discern, of the bodily eye
βλέπωσιν: PASubj 3p, βλέπω, 1) to see, discern, of the bodily eye
βλέποντες: PAPart npm, βλέπω, 1) to see, discern, of the bodily eye
γένωνται: AMSubj 3p, γίνομαι, 1) to become, i.e. to come into existence, begin to be, receive being
1. It would appear, from this verse, that the “judgment” that Jesus brings is not the fire and brimstone for all eternity stuff, but the revelation of truth, which subverts and common assumptions by exposing the seeing ones as truly the blind ones and the blind ones as truly the seeing ones.

40  Ἤκουσαν ἐκ τῶν Φαρισαίων ταῦτα οἱ μετ' αὐτοῦ ὄντες, καὶ εἶπον αὐτῷ, Μὴ καὶ ἡμεῖς τυφλοί ἐσμεν;
The ones out of the Pharisees who were with him were hearing these things and said to him, “We are not also blind are we?”
Ἤκουσαν: AAI 3p, ἀκούω, 1) to be endowed with the faculty of hearing, not deaf
ὄντες: PAPart npm, εἰμί, 1) to be, to exist, to happen, to be present 
εἶπον: AAI 3p, λέγω, 1) to say, to speak
ἐσμεν: PAI 1p, εἰμί, 1) to be, to exist, to happen, to be present 
1. It is a bit difficult to translate this question strictly, because the subjunctive negative particle Μὴ indicates an expected negative answer. (Warning: obscure and tenuous movie reference alert:) It is like the scene from “My Cousin Vinny” when the New Yorker says, “I shot the clerk?” to the Alabaman, who interprets it as “I shot the clerk.” The subjunctive adds the inflection.

41 εἶπεν αὐτοῖς ὁ Ἰησοῦς, Εἰ τυφλοὶ ἦτε, οὐκ ἂν εἴχετε ἁμαρτίαν: νῦν δὲ λέγετε ὅτι Βλέπομεν: ἡ ἁμαρτία ὑμῶν μένει.
Jesus said to them, “If you were blind ones, then you would not be having sin; but now you say ‘We see;’ your sin remains.
εἶπεν: AAI 3s, λέγω, 1) to say, to speak
ἦτε: IAI 2p, εἰμί, 1) to be, to exist, to happen, to be present 
εἴχετε: IAI 2p, ἔχω, 1) to have, i.e. to hold 
λέγετε: PAI 2p, λέγω, 1) to say, to speak 
Βλέπομεν: PAI 1p, βλέπω, 1) to see, discern, of the bodily eye 
μένει: PAI 3s, μένω, 1) to remain, abide 
1. The text has circled back to the word ‘sin’ which was the initial question that evoked the whole conversation and healing. From “Who sinned this man or his parents?” (asked by the disciples) to “Your sin remains because you say ‘We see,’” spoken to the Pharisees.  



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