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The previous post in this series may be found here: https://memoirandremains.wordpress.com/2013/08/08/translation-and-notes-1-clement-15-deceitful-lips/

Chapter 16:1-2:

For Christ is of the humble:  not of those who exalt themselves over His sheep.  The majestic scepter of God, our Lord Jesus Christ, did not come in pretentious boasting or haughty arrogance (even though he was able to do so); instead he came in humility, just as the Holy Spirit spoke concerning Him.

Greek Text and Translation Notes:

Ταπεινοφρονούντων γάρ ἐστιν ὁ Χριστός, οὐκ ἐπαιρομένων ἐπὶ τὸ ποίμνιον αὐτοῦ. 2 τὸ σκῆπτρον τῆς μεγαλωσύνης τοῦ Θεοῦ, ὁ Κύριος ἡμῶν Χριστὸς Ἰησοῦς, οὐκ ἦλθεν ἐν κόμπῳ ἀλαζονείας οὐδὲ ὑπερηφανίας, καίπερ δυνάμενος, ἀλλὰ ταπεινοφρονῶν, καθὼς τὸ πνεῦμα τὸ ἅγιον περὶ αὐτοῦ ἐλάλησεν·


Ταπεινοφρονούντων γάρ ἐστιν ὁ Χριστός

For of those who are humble is the Christ

Christ is those who are humble.

Ho Christos: nominative; the subject of the sentence.

The genitive is used to indicate relationship with; similar to a familial relationship. Christ is not merely in proximity with the humble, rather,  they stand in relationship to one-another.

Gar, for, draws a connection to the preceding paragraph, Let us unite with those who practice peace, for Christ is with the humble.

οὐκ ἐπαιρομένων ἐπὶ τὸ ποίμνιον αὐτοῦ

Not of those who exalt themselves over the flock  his (that is, Christ’s)

Not of those who exalt themselves over Christ’s flock.

Again the genitive of relationship: Christ is not in relationship with the self-exalting.

Epit + accusative, just epi + the dative or genitive means over. Smyth gives this understanding of prepositions with epi: with genitive, “on”; with dative “on”; with accusative, “to, toward, for” (Smyth, 1676). I wonder if the use of the accusative creates a whiff an adversarial relationship between those subjected to the self-exalting leadership.

τὸ σκῆπτρον τῆς μεγαλωσύνης τοῦ Θεοῦ

The scepter of the majesty of God

The majesty, genitive: the attributive genitive:  the noun in the genitive functions as an attributive adjective of the head noun, “scepter”. Accordingly, “the majestic secpeter”.

Of the God, genitive: a genitive of possession.


ὁ Κύριος ἡμῶν Χριστὸς Ἰησοῦς,

The Lord of us, Jesus Christ

The entire phrase is in apposition the preceding phrase: Jesus is the scepter.

The Lord of us=our Lord.

οὐκ ἦλθεν ἐν κόμπῳ ἀλαζονείας

He did not come in pretentious boasting

ἦλθεν: He came, aorist.

ἐν κόμπῳ: in a boast. The dative here is appears to be associative dative or perhaps instrumental dative.  One could argue this was in the sphere of a boast, which is true by rather vague.

The noun is related to the verb: κομπάζω , fut. -άσομαι B.7.42:—

A.= κομπέω, boast, brag, A.Th.436, Ag.1671, etc.; “κ. μέγα” S.Aj.1122; “μάτην” E.Hipp.978; κ. ἐπί τινι speak big against . . , A.Th.480 (but also, boast of . . , Phld.Rh.1.24 S.): c. acc., κ. λόγον speak big words, A.Ag.1400, etc.; κ. γέρας boast one’s office, Id.Eu.209; “οὐ πατρῴαν τὴν τέχνην ἐκόμπασας” S.El.1500: c. inf., boast that . . , A.Ag.1130, E.Ba.340; κ. ὡς . . X.Oec.10.3, Plu. Crass.18:—Pass., to be made a boast of, be renowned, “οὕνεκ᾽ ὄλβου” E.HF64; φόβος . . κομπάζεται fear is loudly spoken, A.Th.500; τίνος δὲ . . παῖς πατρὸς κομπάζεται; of what father is he said to be the son? E.Alc.497.—Rare in early Prose, Lys.6.18,48, X.Smp.4.19, Oec. l.c.


II. = κομπέω 1.2, ring a jar to test its soundness, PLond. ined.2327 (iii B.C.).


III. ἐκομπάσθη: ἠπατήθη, εἰς ὄγκον διετέθη, Hsch., cf. Suid.

It appears to be relatively rare.

ἀλαζονείας:  pretentiousness, arrogance, boasting. The genitive of attribution modifies the preceding noun: pretentious boast/arrogant boast

οὐδὲ ὑπερηφανίας

Neither of a contemptuous arrogance

καίπερ δυνάμενος

even though he was able.

The participle probably indicates manner of coming: Jesus could have come as a haughty lord (Wallace, 627).

ἀλλὰ ταπεινοφρονῶν,

yet [he came] in an attitude of humility

The participle again indicates manner.

It seems the “de” connects the elements in a series; the “alla” creates the primary contrast in the sentence.

καθὼς τὸ πνεῦμα τὸ ἅγιον περὶ αὐτοῦ ἐλάλησεν

Just as the Spirit, the Holy one, concerning him [Christ] he spoke

τὸ πνεῦμα τὸ ἅγιον: The SBL NT has this construction given 20 times for the Holy Spirit. This is the second attributive position.

Of this phrase, Robertson remarks:

As for Middleton’s rule that the article is present when the personality of the Holy Spirit is taught,4 that is illustrated by Jo. 14:26, τὸ πνεῦμα τὸ ἅγιον, where the Holy Spirit is spoken of in distinction from the Father and the Son. Cf. also 15:26. See also τὸ πνεῦμα τὸ ἅγιον (Lu. 3:22), at the baptism of Jesus. Κύριος, like θεός and πνεῦμα, is often practically a proper name in the N. T.


A. T. Robertson, A Grammar of the Greek New Testament in the Light of Historical Research (Logos Bible Software, 1919), 795.

περὶ αὐτοῦ: peri + genitive, “concerning”

ἐλάλησεν: aorist lalao, he spoke. That is the Holy Spirit spoke concerning Jesus.

Other English Translations:

1 FOR Christ is of those who are humble-minded, not of those who exalt themselves over His flock.  2 The sceptre of the greatness of God, the Lord Jesus Christ, came not with the pomp of pride or of arrogance, for all his power, but was humble-minded, as the Holy Spirit spake concerning him.

Pope Clement I et al., The Apostolic Fathers, ed. Pope Clement I et al., vol. 1, The Loeb Classical Library (London; New York: Heinemann; Macmillan, 1912–1913), 35.

For Christ is with them that are lowly of mind, not with them that exalt themselves over the flock. 2The sceptre [of the majesty] of God, even our Lord Jesus Christ, came not in the pomp of arrogance or of pride, though He might have done so, but in lowliness of mind, according as the Holy Spirit spake concerning Him.



Joseph Barber Lightfoot and J. R. Harmer, The Apostolic Fathers (London: Macmillan and Co., 1891), 63.