Posted 07 April 2013 - 05:21 PM
Traditionally, diagramming a sentence (paragraph, etc.) has been a visual way of expressing the results of working through a passage and making exegetical decisions. When confronted by multiple choices (=ambiguity), the exegete is forced to decide which meaning the passage seeks to convey. That decision is reflected in the way s/he diagrams.
Using someone else's diagrams means seeing their exegetical choices.
For my part, I am pleased we have the diagrams we do, but wish we offered other diagrams as well, particularly where there are legitimate choices to be made about what a passage means [or which meaning(s) of several possible are intended].
Until we do [if we do], I suggest using the current diagrams along with a technical commentary or translator's handbook.The latter lets us know the range of possible translations and meanings—and where ambiguity exists.
Just one further note: don't be too quick to eliminate all but a single possibility. Ancient literature, just like modern writing, often intends puns and other plays on words. I can think of several biblical passages where multiple meanings are intended.
Timothy P. Jenney, Ph. D.
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