Romans 6:4 Part 1

Friday, May 19, 2006

I am already thinking that I am too ambitious in trying to tackle one verse in only one day. The richness in this verse is the case in point. What with phrases like buried with him, buried through baptism, buried into death, raised from the dead, through the Father’s glory, in the same way, newness of life, might walk; and I am only just beginning.

συνεταφημεν V-2API-1P ουν CONJ αυτω P-DSM
we were buried therefore with him
....................δια PREP του T-GSN βαπτισματος N-GSN
.................…through baptism
……..................... ....εις PREP τον T-ASM θανατον N-ASM
………...………………….into (the) death
….................ινα CONJ ωσπερ ADV ηγερθη V-API-3S χριστος N-NSM εκ
....................PREP νεκρων A-GPM
….................in order that just as Christ was raised from the dead
………………………………………………δια PREP της T-GSF δοξης N-GSF του
..................................................................T-GSM πατρος N-GSM
………………………………………………through the glory of the Father
.................…ουτως ADV και CONJ ημεις P-1NP εν PREP καινοτητι N-DSF
....................ζωης N-GSF περιπατησωμεν V-AAS-1P
….................in the same way we too in newness of life might walk

In v.4, Paul draws out and clarifies the meaning of the last clause of v.3. εις τον θανατον is to be taken with βαπτισματος rather than συνεταφημεν since it corresponds closely to εις τον θανατον αυτου εβαπτισθημεν in v.3. This is clear because it would be odd to talk about burial into death. (Cranfield)

The use of the dative personal pronoun, αυτω, may require some study. What are the implications between these 2 phrases:
1. Through baptism we are buried with Christ
2. Through baptism we are buried into Christ

Most translations favour #1. Why? If I look at it from the English standpoint, when I am buried with Christ, it is a participation, we are being buried together, I am by his side; but when I am buried into Christ, it is a union, he brings me into him in death, I am in him. Comparing with v.3, we are however, baptised into Christ and into his death. Are there any significant difference?

Maeghan

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5 comment(s)

  1. I like both. Saturday my man will be Baptised.
    It all sounds good. :-)

    ReplyDelete
  2. Hi Milly,
    Congratulations! Yup ... with or into, he is getting baptised and that is most important - building our relationship with Christ is what matters most.
    It's just me and my inquisitive mind and my upcoming assignment paper on Romans 6 :)

    Blessings!
    Maeghan

    ReplyDelete
  3. Maeghan,

    I think 'with' is more often used because of the imagary it invokes. 'Into' almost sounds gruesome.

    In v.3, my mind translates the word 'Christ' to 'Christianity'. I don't know if it is accurate, but it is easier for my little brain to wrap around.

    God Bless
    doug

    ReplyDelete
  4. Into Christ?!?!

    (Do you know chess notation? "?!?!" means an unforeseen and extremely pivotal move, the outcome of which cannot be judged at this early point.)

    Buried into Christ.

    It might be a nothing, but if that were what Paul meant, WOW what a difference.

    Death, the enemy of God, accepted Christ into its grasp for a couple days. Christ triumphed over it, to His eternal glory.

    If the word means "with", then we were there in death with Him. That could be beautiful. But, if the word means "into", then who knows where we were! We were not buried into death, but into the Living One.

    Samson once found a dead lion, with honey hidden in its carcass. Jesus becomes this to us. He died and was buried, and we die in Him, but rather than being immersed in death, we are buried within Him and find the honey there. We are not beside Him in death, but carried within Him. He allowed us to be buried into something besides death - into resurrected Life.

    I don't know. There is a lot to balance before fully accepting that thought, but I love insights like that!

    Thank you!

    ReplyDelete
  5. codepoke,
    no, I don't know the notation :)
    I think I was thinking too much. I responded to a comment somewhere - being buried into Christ would be gruesome! It was my mistake since I missed the συν preposition in the verb. But being in line with "baptised into" and thus "buried into". I was too worked up over the words to think about the idea!!

    But why not eh?
    We are baptised into Christ and with baptism being equated with burying (though it was not found in the bible such equation) then we are burying into Christ! Nevermind, like you said - a lot to balance required before fully accepting that thought.

    ReplyDelete