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What is the modern translation of Matthew 24:6-8?


and-then

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Matthew 24:6-8

For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: 

I've always thought that this verse was unnecessarily repetitive.  They seemed synonymous to me but recently I saw a translation that seemed to imply that they are not the same.  In fact, this translation would fit today's realities far better.  It supposes that countries would be at each other's throats but also that the "ethnos" would be in strife.  IOW, there would be discord and strife between people groups and races.  Any thoughts from those here who are Bible scholars?

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5 minutes ago, and-then said:

Matthew 24:6-8

For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: 

I've always thought that this verse was unnecessarily repetitive.  They seemed synonymous to me but recently I saw a translation that seemed to imply that they are not the same.  In fact, this translation would fit today's realities far better.  It supposes that countries would be at each other's throats but also that the "ethnos" would be in strife.  IOW, there would be discord and strife between people groups and races.  Any thoughts from those here who are Bible scholars?

 A nation is a people, a kingdom is a nation and its vassal states.

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3 minutes ago, Hammerclaw said:

 A nation is a people, a kingdom is a nation and its vassal states.

Yes, I can understand that definition in English but I assume the Greek defines it a bit differently.  I've never been any good at digging out such differences.  The one certainty is that the world has turned into a multi-polar armed camp with even average citizens prepping themselves to fight their neighbors.  I've never seen the like of it and I'm thinking it doesn't get better as long as we have instant contact and communication with each other and choose to reject civility.  I'm quite as guilty as the next person on that count but, there we are.

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Just now, and-then said:

Yes, I can understand that definition in English but I assume the Greek defines it a bit differently.  I've never been any good at digging out such differences.  The one certainty is that the world has turned into a multi-polar armed camp with even average citizens prepping themselves to fight their neighbors.  I've never seen the like of it and I'm thinking it doesn't get better as long as we have instant contact and communication with each other and choose to reject civility.  I'm quite as guilty as the next person on that count but, there we are.

Since there's multiple definitions, you just have to pick. Not all words are direct translations between languages and there are words in one language that have no direct equivalent in others.

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Posted (edited)

I'm not sure about either the question or the objection.

The context is prophetic, and that genre is typically rich with figurative speech. Repetition (including near-repetition with variations) is a rhetorical figure of speech. There's not much ground for objection in that.

As to the Greek, an ethnos is a people bound together by a common culture, and a basileia is a territory and its inhabitants ruled by a king (literarlly) or perhaps ruled or governed by another type of sovreign. Two different ways that people can be united, culturally and politically; two different ways people can confront each other in groups.

Matthew 24:7 is copied verbatim from Mark 13:8. Mark is not a stickler for titles. Mark describes Herod Antipas as a king (6:14), but he was actually only a "tetrarch" (a reference to a fourfold division of his late father's territory, Herod I, who was indeed a king).

As to rendering this in (American) English as nation against nation, kingdom against kingdom, meh, our word nation does overlap our word kingdom, so it comes across as maybe too repetitious. People against people, country against country?

ETA Just that there is a difference: look at the current Russian-Ukrainian war. The belligerents are two nation-states or countries, but part of the pretext of the war is that the population of Crimea and eastern Ukraine are largely ethnically Russian, but living or recently having lived in the territory of the nation-state of Ukraine. Meanwhile the "Russian Federation" is a nation state that comprises many different ethnic groups forcibly united by the old Russian Empire and held together within the Soviet Union, both nation-states, now blessedly defunct.

Edited by eight bits
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Posted (edited)

Problem is, particularly with Biblical translations, is that the major translation points (Greek to Vulgate Latin, Latin to Medieval English, Medieval English to Modern English) tended to involve simplification and/or unification of language - take for example the word “angel” when translated via that process to English it combines a number of words with different meanings (the various “-ims” all become “Angels” while in the original each “-im” was a role or a title not a “species”). 
So “nation”? Could be “race”, or “state”, or “grouping of people based on esoteric factors like whether or not they like Star Trek: Discovery”. 
“kingdom” could be “group of people ruled by a king” or even “religion” or “whether or not people like Star Trek” (ie a blanket term for a group of unified nations). 

Edited by Sir Wearer of Hats
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27 minutes ago, Piney said:

"For Nation will fight against Nation, and Kingdom against kingdom" is probably talking about ethnic groups "ethnos" and kingdoms "basileia" which were multi-ethnic at that time. 

But the part of Matthew American Evangelicals miss is this gem which says it all.....

24:34 "In truth I tell you, before this generation has passed away, all these things will have taken place." 

Errrp....Sorry Paul, you answered..

It doesn’t get any more unambiguous than that IMO. 
 

cormac

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He was talking about his times.  Does it really matter 2000 years later?   He certainly wasn't using 21st century definitions of nation and kingdom, unless he had a time machine?  

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1 minute ago, Essan said:

He was talking about his times.  Does it really matter 2000 years later?   He certainly wasn't using 21st century definitions of nation and kingdom, unless he had a time machine?  

He had the Chronovisor which is now in possession of the Vatican. Ernetti lied about inventing it. 

😬 

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2 hours ago, Piney said:

"For Nation will fight against Nation, and Kingdom against kingdom" is probably talking about ethnic groups "ethnos" and kingdoms "basileia" which were multi-ethnic at that time. 

But the part of Matthew American Evangelicals miss is this gem which says it all.....

24:34 "In truth I tell you, before this generation has passed away, all these things will have taken place." 

Errrp....Sorry Paul, you answered..

 

2 hours ago, Piney said:

"For Nation will fight against Nation, and Kingdom against kingdom" is probably talking about ethnic groups "ethnos" and kingdoms "basileia" which were multi-ethnic at that time. 

But the part of Matthew American Evangelicals miss is this gem which says it all.....

24:34 "In truth I tell you, before this generation has passed away, all these things will have taken place." 

Errrp....Sorry Paul, you answered..

Coffman's Commentary:

Verse 34
Verily I say unto you, this generation shall not pass away, till all these things be accomplished.

This verse is the grounds for construing the whole discourse as a prophet of the destruction of Jerusalem and referring it exclusively to that event; but careful attention to the exact words Christ used removes the problem. Jesus used "these things" to refer to the destruction of Jerusalem and "that day" to designate the judgment. Thus, this verse cannot apply to the second coming and final judgment but to the destruction of the Holy City, for he said that that generation would not pass away until all "these things" be accomplished. Furthermore, "this generation" has a much broader meaning than the lifetime of those who heard him. If Christ had intended that kind of meaning, he would have used words similar to those of Mark 9:1. Therefore, we look for some special meaning of the term GENERATION. As regarded the destruction of Jerusalem, "generation" had a limitation to the lives of persons then living; but, as regards the final judgment, "generation" referred to the descendants of Abraham, meaning the race of the Jews and that they would not cease as a separate people until the end of time. If such an explanation appears ingenious, it should be remembered that in describing two events, plainly separated by centuries of time, some expressions would of necessity have double meanings; and it is the view here that such an understanding of the word "generation" is positively required and that such does no violence whatever to the text.

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18 minutes ago, Buzz_Light_Year said:

 

Coffman's Commentary:

Verse 34
Verily I say unto you, this generation shall not pass away, till all these things be accomplished.

This verse is the grounds for construing the whole discourse as a prophet of the destruction of Jerusalem and referring it exclusively to that event; but careful attention to the exact words Christ used removes the problem. Jesus used "these things" to refer to the destruction of Jerusalem and "that day" to designate the judgment. Thus, this verse cannot apply to the second coming and final judgment but to the destruction of the Holy City, for he said that that generation would not pass away until all "these things" be accomplished. Furthermore, "this generation" has a much broader meaning than the lifetime of those who heard him. If Christ had intended that kind of meaning, he would have used words similar to those of Mark 9:1. Therefore, we look for some special meaning of the term GENERATION. As regarded the destruction of Jerusalem, "generation" had a limitation to the lives of persons then living; but, as regards the final judgment, "generation" referred to the descendants of Abraham, meaning the race of the Jews and that they would not cease as a separate people until the end of time. If such an explanation appears ingenious, it should be remembered that in describing two events, plainly separated by centuries of time, some expressions would of necessity have double meanings; and it is the view here that such an understanding of the word "generation" is positively required and that such does no violence whatever to the text.

Good ole James Burton is a good apologist. A lot of *** Ministers are. It's a shame they don't understand Koine or the expression culture surrounding it. "Genea" means just that. A family generation. He would of said "epochal". 

So....No. 

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1 minute ago, Piney said:

Good ole James Burton is a good apologist. A lot of *** Ministers are. It's a shame they don't understand Koine or the expression culture surrounding it. "Genea" means just that. A family generation. He would of said "epochal". 

So....No. 

@Saru Why did the vulgarity filter edit out the abbreviation for the Church of Christ? 

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3 minutes ago, Piney said:

@Saru Why did the vulgarity filter edit out the abbreviation for the Church of Christ? 

You know how people around here like to abbreviate around the filter at times,even moreso when angry... 

*** is one letter shy of... 😆

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46 minutes ago, Buzz_Light_Year said:

 If such an explanation appears ingenious,

Ingenious wasn't the first word that came to mind.

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2 minutes ago, eight bits said:

Ingenious wasn't the first word that came to mind.

It wouldn't be little brown prairie nuggets, would it? 

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3 minutes ago, Piney said:

 little brown prairie nuggets 

That is 4 letters Piney,do try and keep up sir!

 

(Says the man walking through the religious section of the forums like the village idiot 🤣)

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1 hour ago, Piney said:

@Saru Why did the vulgarity filter edit out the abbreviation for the Church of Christ? 

One way or another people are going to get it in the end. :w00t:😈
 

cormac

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On 4/18/2024 at 3:27 PM, eight bits said:

People against people, country against country?

That is the premise of some scholars these days.  IF they are correct then it perfectly describes the chaos we see today.  Hate is everywhere and due to the increase in lawlessness, the "love of many will grow cold".

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5 hours ago, Piney said:

24:34 "In truth I tell you, before this generation has passed away, all these things will have taken place." 

I've heard this idea many times and I'm sure that you understand that it is roundly rejected by those who think that "this generation" is speaking of the generation that will experience these events in the last days.  

 

5 hours ago, Piney said:

before this generation has passed away, all these things will have taken place.

Excellent.  Then we have no worries about Israel being surrounded by enemies and 5/6 of those enemies being killed as well as fire falling on the nations that sent them.  "Those dwelling carelessly in the Isles" as it were.

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1 hour ago, and-then said:

That is the premise of some scholars these days.  IF they are correct then it perfectly describes the chaos we see today.  Hate is everywhere and due to the increase in lawlessness, the "love of many will grow cold".

Matthew 7:7

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2 hours ago, and-then said:

That is the premise of some scholars these days.  IF they are correct then it perfectly describes the chaos we see today.  Hate is everywhere and due to the increase in lawlessness, the "love of many will grow cold".

Scholars these days... :no:

Hate is nothing knew.  But hate isn't everywhere.  Those same Biblical Scholars of today would have been arguing that Hitler was the Anti-Christ.

There has never been a time when there weren't wars and rumors of wars and pestilences and earthquakes in diverse places.  

The Nations are not rising up against each other.  Wars are the history of Mankind. 

The prophetic statement I think is interesting is verses 4 and 5.

And Jesus answered and said unto them, Take heed that no man deceive you.

For many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and shall deceive many.

It seems to me that verse 5 is a fitting description of Christianity in today's world.  Saying that he is Christ, and deceiving many!

 

 

 

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8 hours ago, cormac mac airt said:

It doesn’t get any more unambiguous than that IMO. 
 

cormac

And if the same strife is happening today and in the coming years, especially the prediction of Israel coming back to the land, being surrounded by its enemies, left without allies but still winning and destroying those enemies?  I'm just curious about how you'd explain that happening as a "self-fulfilling prophecy".  That seems to be the common explanation but I've never really understood how that works.

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3 minutes ago, joc said:

The prophetic statement I think is interesting is verses 4 and 5.

All of it was supposed to be prophetic.  The Gog/Magog war is quite clear about the numbers of enemy forces that come against "the mountains of Israel" being destroyed.  5/6 of all of them will fall in battle AND God says He will rain fire on those who "dwell carelessly in the isles".  That prediction seems to point to the nations that sent those troops.  

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Just now, and-then said:

All of it was supposed to be prophetic.  The Gog/Magog war is quite clear about the numbers of enemy forces that come against "the mountains of Israel" being destroyed.  5/6 of all of them will fall in battle AND God says He will rain fire on those who "dwell carelessly in the isles".  That prediction seems to point to the nations that sent those troops.  

Well...this is what we know...Prophecies have no bearing whatsoever with reality.  

Unless you believe that YOU have already taken the number of the beast.  If you think you haven't, try giving your Social Security number back to the government.  You can't buy or sell anything without it.  

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