NETBible KJV GRK-HEB XRef Arts Hymns
  Discovery Box

Romans 4:17-21

Context
4:17 (as it is written, “I have made you the father of many nations”). 1  He is our father 2  in the presence of God whom he believed – the God who 3  makes the dead alive and summons the things that do not yet exist as though they already do. 4  4:18 Against hope Abraham 5  believed 6  in hope with the result that he became the father of many nations 7  according to the pronouncement, 8 so will your descendants be.” 9  4:19 Without being weak in faith, he considered 10  his own body as dead 11  (because he was about one hundred years old) and the deadness of Sarah’s womb. 4:20 He 12  did not waver in unbelief about the promise of God but was strengthened in faith, giving glory to God. 4:21 He was 13  fully convinced that what God 14  promised he was also able to do.

1 tn Verses 16-17 comprise one sentence in Greek, but this has been divided into two sentences due to English requirements.

sn A quotation from Gen 17:5. The quotation forms a parenthesis in Paul’s argument.

2 tn The words “He is our father” are not in the Greek text but are supplied to show that they resume Paul’s argument from 16b. (It is also possible to supply “Abraham had faith” here [so REB], taking the relative clause [“who is the father of us all”] as part of the parenthesis, and making the connection back to “the faith of Abraham,” but such an option is not as likely [C. E. B. Cranfield, Romans [ICC], 1:243].)

3 tn “The God” is not in the Greek text but is supplied for clarity.

4 tn Or “calls into existence the things that do not exist.” The translation of ὡς ὄντα (Jw" onta) allows for two different interpretations. If it has the force of result, then creatio ex nihilo is in view and the variant rendering is to be accepted (so C. E. B. Cranfield, Romans [ICC], 1:244). A problem with this view is the scarcity of ὡς plus participle to indicate result (though for the telic idea with ὡς plus participle, cf. Rom 15:15; 1 Thess 2:4). If it has a comparative force, then the translation given in the text is to be accepted: “this interpretation fits the immediate context better than a reference to God’s creative power, for it explains the assurance with which God can speak of the ‘many nations’ that will be descended from Abraham” (D. Moo, Romans [NICNT], 282; so also W. Sanday and A. C. Headlam, Romans [ICC], 113). Further, this view is in line with a Pauline idiom, viz., verb followed by ὡς plus participle (of the same verb or, in certain contexts, its antonym) to compare present reality with what is not a present reality (cf. 1 Cor 4:7; 5:3; 7:29, 30 (three times), 31; Col 2:20 [similarly, 2 Cor 6:9, 10]).

5 tn Grk “he”; the referent (Abraham) has been specified in the translation for clarity.

6 tn Grk “who against hope believed,” referring to Abraham. The relative pronoun was converted to a personal pronoun and, because of the length and complexity of the Greek sentence, a new sentence was started here in the translation.

7 sn A quotation from Gen 17:5.

8 tn Grk “according to that which had been spoken.”

9 sn A quotation from Gen 15:5.

10 tc Most mss (D F G Ψ 33 1881 Ï it) read “he did not consider” by including the negative particle (οὐ, ou), but others (א A B C 6 81 365 1506 1739 pc co) lack οὐ. The reading which includes the negative particle probably represents a scribal attempt to exalt the faith of Abraham by making it appear that his faith was so strong that he did not even consider the physical facts. But “here Paul does not wish to imply that faith means closing one’s eyes to reality, but that Abraham was so strong in faith as to be undaunted by every consideration” (TCGNT 451). Both on external and internal grounds, the reading without the negative particle is preferred.

11 tc ‡ Most witnesses (א A C D Ψ 33 Ï bo) have ἤδη (hdh, “already”) at this point in v. 19. But B F G 630 1739 1881 pc lat sa lack it. Since it appears to heighten the style of the narrative and since there is no easy accounting for an accidental omission, it is best to regard the shorter text as original. NA27 includes the word in brackets, indicating doubt as to its authenticity.

12 tn Grk “And he.” Because of the difference between Greek style, which often begins sentences or clauses with “and,” and English style, which generally does not, δέ (de) has not been translated here.

13 tn Grk “and being.” Because of the length and complexity of the Greek sentence, a new sentence was started here in the translation.

14 tn Grk “he”; the referent (God) has been specified in the translation for clarity.



TIP #14: Use the Universal Search Box for either chapter, verse, references or word searches or Strong Numbers. [ALL]
created in 0.03 seconds
powered by bible.org