Greek "THIS faith"?? Luke 18:8 More slimey WTBCS doublespeak?

by hamsterbait 6 Replies latest watchtower bible

  • hamsterbait

    The WT study for Feb 4, says that in Luke 18, Jesus asks "when the Son of Man arrives will he find THIS faith in the earth"?

    A footnote in the NWT says "or "this faith" ", but does not quote any authority to back up this claim.

    Looking at the greek text, I see only a definite article. I checked other translations, and none of mine said "THE faith" - I assume because the definite article in this instance is like that in other languages such as german and french, where it would mean faith in general. ( La foi, la fe, das Glaube) Since Jesus is not talking about faith in Allah, Buddhas or Wotan, he just means faith in him. As opposed to "This" particular faith in him from Crooklyn.

    Have the WT changed it to "this", so that the witlesses think he means "THIS faith as taught by the WTBCS" as opposed to other peoples faith in Christ?


  • RAF

    what is the exact verse you are talking about ?

    I like the message very much ... it takes about ... you think you are right but your aren't you might be worse !

  • Narkissos

    I can see how the definite article could be interpreted as a demonstrative in view of the foregoing parable: not pointing to the object of faith (not even Jesus) but to a quality of faith (endurance, persistence). Imo the translation and footnote are well balanced here (contrary to other places where the NWT puts the maximalist interpretation, or outright overtranslation, right into the main text). Now if they use the footnote rendering and apply it to faith with a particular object, they are definitely off the mark. What is the Watchtower context?

  • blondie

    See the 2-4-07 WT Review

    In Luke chapter 18, we find Jesus' illustration regarding a widow and a judge. It is similar to the illustration about the persistent host, which we discussed in the preceding article. (Luke 11:5-13) However, the context of the Bible passage containing the illustration of the widow and the judge shows that this especially applies to those living "when the Son of man arrives" in Kingdom power, which time period began in 1914.-Luke 18:8.* (Footnote: * To appreciate fully the import of this illustration, read Luke 17:22-33. Note how the references to "the Son of man" at Luke 17:22, 24, 30 bear on the question raised at Luke 18:8.)

    "Will He Really Find This Faith on the Earth?"

    Q15) (a) What question did Jesus pose, and why? (b) What should we ask ourselves?

    15) Jesus posed the intriguing question: "When the Son of man arrives, will he really find this faith on the earth?" (Luke 18:8, footnote) The expression "this faith" indicates that Jesus referred, not to faith in a general sense, but to faith of a particular kind--faith like that possessed by the widow. Jesus did not answer his question. He raised it so that his disciples would think about the quality of their own faith. Was it gradually weakening, so that they were in danger of returning to the things they had left behind? Or did they have the sort of faith exemplified by the widow? Today, we should likewise ask ourselves, 'What kind of faith does "the Son of man" find in my heart?'

    Q16) What sort of faith did the widow have?

    16) For us to be among those who will receive the justice of Jehovah, we need to follow the course of that widow. What sort of faith did she have? She showed her faith by persistently "going to [the judge], saying, `See that I get justice."' That widow persisted in order to receive justice from an unrighteous man. Similarly, God's servants today can be confident that they will receive the justice of Jehovah--even if it takes more time than they had expected. Further, they show their confidence in God's promises by persistent prayers--yes, by `crying out to Jehovah day and night.' (Luke 18:7) Indeed, if a Christian were to stop praying for justice to be done, he would show that he had lost confidence that Jehovah is going to act in behalf of his servants.

    Q19) How do we prove that we firmly believe that God will "cause justice to be done"?

    19) As we recall, Jesus asked: "When the Son of man arrives, will he really find this faith on the earth?" What is the answer to his intriguing question? How happy we are that millions of faithful servants of Jehovah around the earth today prove by their prayers, patience, and perseverance that they do have this faith! Thus, Jesus' question can be answered in the affirmative. Yes, despite the injustices that Satan's world presently inflicts upon us, we firmly believe that God shall "cause justice to be done for his chosen ones."

  • hamsterbait

    Nark - it seems you are correct.


  • Narkissos

    Thank you Blondie.

    Referring the text to a future period is of course contextually wrong; but they do seem to insist not on the object but on the quality of faith, which is a possible nuance of the definite article in this context.

    "Faith" in general would require no definite article (e.g. 1 Corinthians 13:13).

  • moggy lover
    moggy lover

    Good point, Hampsterbait. As you mentioned in your first post, the use of the definite article with "pistis" in Lu 18:8 most probaly refers to faith as a quality, rather than something definitive. This does not mean that it is essentially wrong to render "ten pistin" as "THE faith" However if one is constrained to do so, then I would at least expect the translator to be consistent at this verse. Why?

    Because "faith" [or "belief"] is not the only abstract noun mentioned in this verse!!

    The word "ekdikesis" [justice - NWT] also occurs with the definite article. The NWT should therefore, if it is going to say "THE faith" have said "THE justice" ie:"He will cause THE justice to be done to them....will he find the faith."

    Most translations, evidently because of this, say simply "justice" and "faith" Of the 40 odd translations I have consulted, three use "the faith" and all consistently make allowance for "the justice" as well.

    For instance, the YLT has: "He will execute the justice to them. ... will he find the faith on the earth"

    The same goes for the Emphatic Diaglott. Rotherham's translation translates the first definite article as a demonstrative ie: "this justice" and goes on to say "the faith"

    But then, convenience, and not consistency, was the prime requirement for Freddy Franz and his so-called NW "Translation"


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