Wednesday, August 07, 2013

Notes on 2 Corinthians 3:18

Text: ἡμεῖς δὲ πάντες ἀνακεκαλυμμένῳ προσώπῳ τὴν δόξαν κυρίου κατοπτριζόμενοι τὴν αὐτὴν εἰκόνα μεταμορφούμεθα ἀπὸ δόξης εἰς δόξαν καθάπερ ἀπὸ κυρίου πνεύματος (2 Corinthians 3:18 W-H with Diacritics).

1. ἀνακεκαλυμμένῳ-Perfect participle passive voice. See 2 Corinthians 3:14. Dative of manner ("with unveiled face"). See Zerwick, Grammatical Analysis, page 540; Biblical Greek Illustrated by Examples (sec. 60).

2. κατοπτριζόμενοι-"Present middle participle of κατοπτρίζω, late verb from κάτοπτρον, mirror (κατά, οπτρον, a thing to see with). In Philo (Legis Alleg. iii. 33) the word means beholding as in a mirror and that idea suits also the figure in 1 Co 13:12. There is an inscription of third century B.C. with EGKATOPTRISASQAI EIS TO hUDWR, to look at one's reflection in the water. Plutarch uses the active for mirroring or reflecting and Chrysostom takes it so here. Either makes good sense" (Robertson's Word Pictures).

3. κατοπτριζόμενοι, "the present middle participle of κατοπτρίζω (only here in NT). In the middle it means 'to reflect as a mirror' (A-S, p. 242). Since they did not have glass mirrors (only bronze) in Paul's day, 'glass' [KJV] is incorrect" (Word Meanings in the NT, 251).

4. ἀπὸ δόξης εἰς δόξαν-"The idea in the phrase before us is; that there is a continual increase of moral purity and holiness under the gospel until it results in the perfect glory of heaven" (Barnes Notes on the Bible).

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