Internet Verse Search Commentaries Word Analysis ITL - draft

1 John 3:17

Context
NET ©

But whoever has the world’s possessions 1  and sees his fellow Christian 2  in need and shuts off his compassion against him, how can the love of God 3  reside 4  in such a person? 5 

NIV ©

If anyone has material possessions and sees his brother in need but has no pity on him, how can the love of God be in him?

NASB ©

But whoever has the world’s goods, and sees his brother in need and closes his heart against him, how does the love of God abide in him?

NLT ©

But if anyone has enough money to live well and sees a brother or sister in need and refuses to help––how can God’s love be in that person?

MSG ©

If you see some brother or sister in need and have the means to do something about it but turn a cold shoulder and do nothing, what happens to God's love? It disappears. And you made it disappear.

BBE ©

But if a man has this world’s goods, and sees that his brother is in need, and keeps his heart shut against his brother, how is it possible for the love of God to be in him?

NRSV ©

How does God’s love abide in anyone who has the world’s goods and sees a brother or sister in need and yet refuses help?

NKJV ©

But whoever has this world’s goods, and sees his brother in need, and shuts up his heart from him, how does the love of God abide in him?


KJV
But
<1161>
whoso
<3739> <302>
hath
<2192> (5725)
this world's
<2889>
good
<979>_,
and
<2532>
seeth
<2334> (5725)
his
<846>
brother
<80>
have
<2192> (5723)
need
<5532>_,
and
<2532>
shutteth up
<2808> (5661)
his
<846>
bowels
<4698>
[of compassion] from
<575>
him
<846>_,
how
<4459>
dwelleth
<3306> (5719)
the love
<26>
of God
<2316>
in
<1722>
him
<846>_?
NASB ©
But whoever
<3739>
<302> has
<2192>
the world's
<2889>
goods
<979>
, and sees
<2334>
his brother
<80>
in need
<5532>
and closes
<2808>
his heart
<4698>
against
<575>
him, how
<4459>
does the love
<26>
of God
<2316>
abide
<3306>
in him?
GREEK
ov
<3739>
R-NSM
d
<1161>
CONJ
an
<302>
PRT
ech
<2192> (5725)
V-PAS-3S
ton
<3588>
T-ASM
bion
<979>
N-ASM
tou
<3588>
T-GSM
kosmou
<2889>
N-GSM
kai
<2532>
CONJ
yewrh
<2334> (5725)
V-PAS-3S
ton
<3588>
T-ASM
adelfon
<80>
N-ASM
autou
<846>
P-GSM
creian
<5532>
N-ASF
econta
<2192> (5723)
V-PAP-ASM
kai
<2532>
CONJ
kleish
<2808> (5661)
V-AAS-3S
ta
<3588>
T-APN
splagcna
<4698>
N-APN
autou
<846>
P-GSM
ap
<575>
PREP
autou
<846>
P-GSM
pwv
<4459>
ADV-I
h
<3588>
T-NSF
agaph
<26>
N-NSF
tou
<3588>
T-GSM
yeou
<2316>
N-GSM
menei
<3306> (5719)
V-PAI-3S
en
<1722>
PREP
autw
<846>
P-DSM
NET © [draft] ITL
But
<1161>
whoever
<3739>

<302>
has
<2192>
the world’s
<2889>
possessions
<979>
and
<2532>
sees
<2334>
his
<846>
fellow Christian
<80>
in need
<5532>

<2192>
and
<2532>
shuts off
<2808>
his
<846>
compassion
<4698>
against
<575>
him
<846>
, how
<4459>
can
<3306>
the love
<26>
of God
<2316>
reside
<3306>
in
<1722>
such a person
<846>
?
NET ©

But whoever has the world’s possessions 1  and sees his fellow Christian 2  in need and shuts off his compassion against him, how can the love of God 3  reside 4  in such a person? 5 

NET © Notes

tn Here βίος (bios) refers to one’s means of subsistence – material goods or property (BDAG 177 s.v. 2).

sn Note the vivid contrast with Jesus’ example in the preceding verse: He was willing to lay down his very life, but the person in view in 3:17 is not even willing to lay down part of his material possessions for the sake of his brother.

tn See note on the phrase “fellow Christian” in 2:9.

tn Here a subjective genitive, indicating God’s love for us – the love which comes from God – appears more likely because of the parallelism with “eternal life” (ζωὴν αἰώνιον, zwhn aiwnion) in 3:15, which also comes from God.

sn The love of God. The author is not saying that the person who does not love his brother cannot love God either (although this may be true enough), but rather that the person who does not love his brother shows by this failure to love that he does not have any of the love which comes from God ‘residing’ in him (the Greek verb used is μένω [menw]). Once again, conduct is the clue to paternity.

sn Once again the verb μένω (menw) is used of a spiritual reality (in this case the love of God) which does or does not reside in a person. Although the author uses the indefinite relative whoever (Grk ὃς δ᾿ ἄν, Jos dan), it is clear that he has the opponents in view here. This is the only specific moral fault he ever charges the opponents with in the entire letter. It is also clear that the author sees it as impossible that such a person, who refuses to offer help in his brother’s time of need (and thus ‘hates’ his brother rather than ‘loving’ him, cf. 3:15) can have any of the love which comes from God residing in him. This person, from the author’s dualistic ‘either/or’ perspective, cannot be a believer. The semantic force of the deliberative rhetorical question, “How can the love of God reside in such a person?”, is therefore a declarative statement about the spiritual condition of the opponents: “The love of God cannot possibly reside in such a person.”

sn How can the love of God reside in such a person? is a rhetorical question which clearly anticipates a negative answer: The love of God cannot reside in such a person.



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