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πας ο παραβαινων και μη μενων εν τη διδαχη του χριστου θεον ουκ εχει ο μενων εν τη διδαχη του χριστου ουτος και τον πατερα και τον υιον εχει

II John 1:9 TR - Stephens 1550, Beza 1598, Elzevir 1624 and Scrivener 1894 are all identical. See Textus Receptus Bibles.

Whosoever transgresseth, and abideth not in the doctrine of Christ, hath not God. He that abideth in the doctrine of Christ, he hath both the Father and the Son. [KJV.]

John the Apostle here says that whoso “abideth” in the doctrine of Christ “hath” both the Father and the Son.

I am interested in the words “abideth” and “hath” and the relationship, grammatically and linguistically, between them. Abiding and having seem to me to be fundamental concepts.

It does not seem to me, that this is a matter of merely having intellectual knowledge of a subject and thereby possessing some kind of mental ability.

I would appreciate some assistance with the meaning and the force of the original Greek.

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  • @DerÜbermensch The TR itself is a conglomerate rendering of Uncials, miniscules, Versions, Patristic Citations and Lectionary Quotations, the originals of which did not have diacritics. In any case we are not attempting to speak Greek, we are only concerned with understanding the meaning. My personal preference is to copy from reliable sources online and some of these reliable sources do not render the diacritics. I respect your own preference, but I prefer not to follow it myself. – Nigel J Oct 14 '19 at 5:09
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    @DerÜbermensch See edit for my online source. – Nigel J Oct 14 '19 at 20:01
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First, the author places μὴ μένων (“does not abide”) in antithesis to ὁ παραβαίνων (“transgresses”). We could simplify the statement by removing one of the elements of the antithesis, thus producing the following:

9 Whoever does not abide in the doctrine of Christ does not have God. He who abides in the doctrine of Christ has both the Father and the Son.

To abide in the doctrine (teaching) of Christ is to abide in Christ’s words.1 “To abide in” Christ’s doctrine and words would be equivalent to “to abide by” Christ’s doctrine and words. According to LSJ, one use of μένω is:2

LSJ, p. 1103, μένω, 6.

According to Oxford English Dictionary, to “abide by” means:3

Oxford English Dictionary, “abide,” 14.

To abide by means to submit to, obey, and act (walk) in accordance with Christ’s doctrine and words.

In Protagoras, Plato wrote,4

and by showing us the truth would have brought our soul into the repose of abiding by the truth, and so would have saved our life. Would men acknowledge, in view of all this, that the art which saves our life is measurement, or some other?

δὲ τὸ ἀληθὲς ἡσυχίαν ἂν ἐποίησεν ἔχειν τὴν ψυχὴν μένουσαν ἐπὶ τῷ ἀληθεῖ καὶ ἔσωσεν ἂν τὸν βίον; ἆρ᾽ ἂν ὁμολογοῖεν οἱ ἄνθρωποι πρὸς ταῦτα ἡμᾶς τὴν μετρητικὴν σῴζειν ἂν τέχνην ἢ ἄλλην;

Now, in John 14:23, the Lord Jesus Christ said,

23 Jesus answered and said to him, “If anyone loves Me, he will keep My word; and My Father will love him, and We will come to him and make Our home with him. NKJV, ©1982

ΙΓʹ ἀπεκρίθη ὁ Ἰησοῦς καὶ εἶπεν αὐτῷ Ἐάν τις ἀγαπᾷ με τὸν λόγον μου τηρήσει καὶ ὁ πατήρ μου ἀγαπήσει αὐτόν καὶ πρὸς αὐτὸν ἐλευσόμεθα καὶ μονὴν παρ᾽ αὐτῷ ποιησόμεν TR, 1550

The Greek word translated into English as “home” is the noun μονὴν, declined from μονή, which is the noun related to the verb μένω.

Thus, whoever abides by Christ’s doctrine (his words), he has both the Father and the Son, because the Father and Son dwell in that person, and that person, in turn, dwells in the Father and the Son. This is accomplished by means of the Holy Spirit.

In 1 John 3:23–24, it is written,

23 And this is His commandment: that we should believe on the name of His Son Jesus Christ and love one another, as He gave us commandment. 24 Now he who keeps His commandments abides in Him, and He in him. And by this we know that He abides in us, by the Spirit whom He has given us. NKJV, ©1982

ΚΓʹ καὶ αὕτη ἐστὶν ἡ ἐντολὴ αὐτοῦ ἵνα πιστεύσωμεν τῷ ὀνόματι τοῦ υἱοῦ αὐτοῦ Ἰησοῦ Χριστοῦ καὶ ἀγαπῶμεν ἀλλήλους καθὼς ἔδωκεν ἐντολὴν ἡμῖν ΚΔʹ καὶ ὁ τηρῶν τὰς ἐντολὰς αὐτοῦ ἐν αὐτῷ μένει καὶ αὐτὸς ἐν αὐτῷ καὶ ἐν τούτῳ γινώσκομεν ὅτι μένει ἐν ἡμῖν ἐκ τοῦ πνεύματος οὗ ἡμῖν ἔδωκεν TR, 1550


Footnotes

1 John 8:31
2 LSJ, p. 1103, μένω, 6.
3 OED, “abide” (v.), 14.
4 Plato, Protagoras, §356e

References

Liddell, Henry George; Scott, Robert; et al. A Greek-English Lexicon. 9th ed. with revised supplement. Oxford: Clarendon, 1996.

Oxford English Dictionary (online).

Plato. Plato in Twelve Volumes. Trans. Lamb, W. R. M. Vol. 3. Cambridge: Harvard UP, 1967.

Plato. Platonis Opera. Ed. Burnet, John. Vol. 3. Oxford: Clarendon, 1903.

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  • You have taken the English word 'abide' and then noted the English idiom 'abide by'. But the Greek has no such idiom for the word μένων. – Nigel J Oct 14 '19 at 20:04
  • @NigelJ—LSJ begs to differ. But, I’m not going to argue with you if you are not willing to actually understand (not just read) what I posted. There’s no sense in me wasting my time. (I'll even highlight where LSJ says the verb μένω can mean “to abide by.”) – Der Übermensch Oct 14 '19 at 21:00
  • I don't think you are wasting your time at all. I am reading what you write but pointing out (to yourself and to Liddell & Scott) that English idioms cannot be assumed in Greek. 'Abide by' uses a different preposition and a different concept to 'abide in'. This text is crucial : it is about having the Father and having the Son. And the 'abiding' is not, I am convinced, a mere intellectual - or even a merely loyal - attitude. It is a matter of living. Up-voted +1. – Nigel J Oct 15 '19 at 0:05
  • @NigelJ—LSJ says μένω with the prepositions ἐπί and ἐν can mean “abide by.” I’ve done my part. By the way, “abide by” would not even be classified as an idiom. On that note, my time is done on this question. – Der Übermensch Oct 15 '19 at 0:25
  • Thank you for your participation. It is appreciated. – Nigel J Oct 15 '19 at 0:26
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ΚΑΤΑ ΙΩΑΝΝΗΝ 6:56 Greek NT: Scrivener's Textus Receptus 1894 ὁ τρώγων μου τὴν σάρκα καὶ πίνων μου τὸ αἷμα, ἐν ἐμοὶ μένει, κἀγὼ ἐν αὐτῷ.

John 6:56 KJVHe that eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, dwelleth in me, and I in him.

Food is for the children and not for dogs. Because the children must be nourished so that they can grow up and complete the work they were raised up for, to "have" God, reveal Him to people and be a blessing to the world.

John 6:32 KJV Then Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Moses gave you not that bread from heaven; but my Father giveth you the true bread from heaven. 33For the bread of God is he which cometh down from heaven, and giveth life unto the world.

Food must be absorbed, not ejected without extracting and retaining nourishment, in order to be one with God, know Him, be in union with Him, have eternal life, live a life that blesses the world, reveals God to people.

John 6:35 KJV And Jesus said unto them, I am the bread of life: he that cometh to me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on me shall never thirst. 36But I said unto you, That ye also have seen me, and believe not.

Psalms 78:11 KJV And forgat his works, and his wonders that he had shewed them.

Matthew 11:21 KJV Woe unto thee, Chorazin! woe unto thee, Bethsaida! for if the mighty works, which were done in you, had been done in Tyre and Sidon, they would have repented long ago in sackcloth and ashes.

John 17:20 KJV Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on me through their word; 21That they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe that thou hast sent me.

John 3:1 KJV There was a man of the Pharisees, named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews: 2The same came to Jesus by night, and said unto him, Rabbi, we know that thou art a teacher come from God: for no man can do these miracles that thou doest, except God be with him.

Joshua 2:8 KJV And before they were laid down, she came up unto them upon the roof; 9And she said unto the men, I know that the LORD hath given you the land, and that your terror is fallen upon us, and that all the inhabitants of the land faint because of you. 10For we have heard how the LORD dried up the water of the Red sea for you, when ye came out of Egypt; and what ye did unto the two kings of the Amorites, that were on the other side Jordan, Sihon and Og, whom ye utterly destroyed. 11And as soon as we had heard these things, our hearts did melt, neither did there remain any more courage in any man, because of you: for the LORD your God, he is God in heaven above, and in earth beneath.

Numbers 14:24 KJV But My servant Caleb, because he has had a different spirit and has followed Me fully, I will bring into the land which he entered, and his descendants shall take possession of it.

Caleb "dwelleth" in God, meta noia-ed, was born again, re-pented, and "hath" God, who was revealed to Rahab, blessing her, turning her to God.

John "dwelleth" in Christ, and "hath both the Father and the Son".

Lessons

"Abiding" is seeing and remembering the signs Jesus did.

"Having" is having the same unity with God that Jesus had, to reveal God to the world and so bless its people.

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  • I was looking for a substantial explanation of the original Greek words for 'abiding' and 'having'. – Nigel J Oct 15 '19 at 0:07
  • When someone asks how spoons help in eating spaghetti, you reply they don't, forks do. Similarly, when someone asks how exegesis can help in answering a doubt, you reply it doesn't, looking for parallels does. – Seeker Oct 15 '19 at 2:37
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What is the difference in meaning between “abiding” and “having” in 2 John 1:9

Whosoever transgresseth, and abideth not in the doctrine of Christ, hath not God. He that abideth in the doctrine of Christ, he hath both the Father and the Son. [KJV.]

πας ο παραβαινων και μη μενων εν τη διδαχη του χριστου θεον ουκ εχει ο μενων εν τη διδαχη του χριστου ουτος και τον πατερα και τον υιον εχει

The rendering of the verses 2 John 9-11 by James Moffat and NRSV for additional clarification.

James Moffat Bible 2 John 9-11 (on line)

9 "Anyone who is 'advanced' and will not remain by the doctrine of Christ, does not possess God: he who remains by the doctrine of Christ possesses both the Father and the Son. 10 If anyone comes to you and does not bring this doctrine, do not admit him to the house — do not even greet him, 11 for he who greets him shares in his wicked work. "

2 John 9-11 (NRSV)

9 "Everyone who does not abide in the teaching of Christ, but goes beyond it, does not have God; whoever abides in the teaching has both the Father and the Son. 10 Do not receive into the house or welcome anyone who comes to you and does not bring this teaching; 11 for to welcome is to participate in the evil deeds of such a person."

In context John's words would be applied to a person that has either deserted the congregation or became an apostate and started to spreading false doctrines, for example in verse 7 John describes the deteriorating spiritual condition of the congregations when he points out that : " For many deceivers are entered into the world, who confess not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh. This is a deceiver and an antichrist."2 John 7 KJV

Even much earlier that John, Paul writes that false teachings are spreading like gangrene.

2 Timothy 2:17-19 (NRSV)

17 "And their talk will spread like gangrene. Among them are Hymenaeus and Philetus, 18 who have swerved from the truth by claiming that the resurrection has already taken place. They are upsetting the faith of some. 19 But God’s firm foundation stands, bearing this inscription: “The Lord knows those who are his,” and, “Let everyone who calls on the name of the Lord turn away from wickedness.”

Conclusion

The Greek word "μένων" (menon)is translated by most translations as "abide" or "remain" means to keep or remain in the teachings of Christ, and that of the Apostles,or live in harmony with the Bible truths.

Hath God-Have God- έχει θεόν ," is to be in union with him, to have fellowship with him, or "God is love; and he that dwelleth in love dwelleth in God" (1 John 4:16 KJV)

With regards to "fellowship" John wrote; " If we say that we have fellowship with Him and yet walk in the darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth." (1 John 1:6 NASB)

In Union with Light

1 John 1:5 (KJV)

5 "This then is the message which we have heard of him, and declare unto you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all."

1 John 4:16 (KJV)

16 "And we have known and believed the love that God hath to us. God is love; and he that dwelleth in love dwelleth in God, and God in him."

-1

First let me deal with the textual matter. NA28 & UBS5 have "προάγων" (proagōn) = goes ahead/beyond. Byzantine text and TR have "παραβαινων" (parabainon) = transgressing. This change appears to have been introduced about the 8th century. (The Latin is similarly divided.) The Pulpit commentary notes: "Verse 9. - For whosoever transgresseth πᾶς ὁ παραβαίνων we must substitute whosoever advanceth πᾶς ὁ προάγων: both external and internal evidence are strongly in favour of this correction."

ASSUMING NA28 Text

If we assume the NA28 text is correct, then it reads (my translation)

Everyone going beyond and not remaining in the teaching of Christ does not have God. The one remaining in the teaching, this one has both the Father and the Son.

Thus, the text clearly distinguishes those who adhere to ("remain in" or "abide in") the teachings of Jesus vs those who go beyond it. This is a direct reminder of Paul's advice in 1 Cor 4:6, "Do not go beyond what is written."; and 1 John 5:12, "he who has the Son has life … "

BDAG lists the meaning of the verb, "μένω" (meno) as, "Remain, stay"; that is, to not move away from, in this case, the teaching of Jesus.

For the verb, "ἔχω (echó), BDAG has eleven basic meanings; however, the one it nominates here is, "to stand is a close relationship to someone, have, have as". More specifically, the sub-meaning of, "be in communion with them", as 1 John 2:23, 2 John 9. I would understand this to mean, to have Jesus as a close friend or companion.

Thus, the net effect of this instruction is to remain with the teaching of Jesus and not to go beyond it as this risks our friendship with Jesus and thus our salvation and eternal life. It is almost certain that this text was written by John to help counter the rising tide of Gnostisim which was filled with teachers offering more complete knowledge - the Pulpit commentary further notes:

Gnostic teachers professed to have advanced a long way beyond the simple facts and simple moral teaching of the gospel; they "knew the depths;" they had "things ineffable, secret, higher than the heavens," to disclose; and these secret things were often not merely incompatible with Scripture, but a complete reversal of it.

ASSUMING Byzantine Text

The Byzantine reading with "transgressing" introduces a thought jolt as it does not quite fit with what goes before. This makes this Byzantine text very unlikely and improbably the original text. A pious scribe possibly wanted to emphasise that not remaining with the teaching of Jesus was a sin or transgression. This is somewhat at odds with other NT teaching that simply believing something different was sinful. This is why the NA28 text is preferable as it suggests that going beyond the teaching Jesus risks our friendship with Jesus which is what transforms us (Heb 12:2, 3, 1 Cor 3:18, etc).

In any case, the idea of doing wrong by not "staying with" or "abiding in" the teaching of Christ is said here to threaten our eternal salvation.

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  • As stated, I was seeking the fundamental meaning of μενων and εχει in this text, 'abiding' and 'having'.And having quoted the TR, I would have expected the answer to stay with the TR. – Nigel J Mar 3 '19 at 10:38
  • I will update at your request – user25930 Mar 3 '19 at 10:40

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