Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Textual Note: 2 Peter 2:11

The issue here is the case of the noun in the phrase “before the Lord.” Should it be dative (kurio) or genitive (kuriou)?

External evidence:

The traditional reading is the dative. The reading is supported by the modern critical heavyweights, Sinaiticus and Vaticanus. It is also supported by Alexandrinus, though it omits the preposition. The genitive reading, however, is supported by p72.

Internal evidence:

The modern critical text follows the genitive as “the more difficult reading” (Textual Commentary, p. 703). Metzger adds a minority report since his view apparently conflicted with the majority. He suspects that the prepositional phrase was not original but added either in the form para kurio or para kuriou. He notes that in the NT para takes the genitive 78 times, the dative 50 times, and the accusative 60 times. If the phrase is included at all, Metzger argues that it ought to follow “the great uncials” but be enclosed in square brackets.

Translation choices:

All major translations include the prepositional phrase as “before the Lord” (AV, NKJV, NIV, NASB, ESV). The English rendering does not indicate which text is followed. Again, this is an interesting case where the “great uncials” support the antiquity of the traditional reading.


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