Does Risen Again Imply Christ Had Risen Before?

Hi B____,

Thank you for your question. It is always good to hear from you. You noticed the word ‘again’ in Mat 17:9 and you are wondering if it is implying that Christ had ‘risen’ before.
The answer is that it would be better translated simply as ‘risen’ without the word ‘again’. Here is that verse as I have cut and pasted it from my KJV+:

Mat 17:9 AndG2532 as theyG846 came downG2597 fromG575 theG3588 mountain, G3735 JesusG2424 chargedG1781 them, G846 saying, G3004 TellG2036 theG3588 visionG3705 to no man, G3367 untilG2193 G302 theG3588 SonG5207 of manG444 be risen againG450 fromG1537 the dead. G3498

As you can see where I have it emboldened and underlined, the Greek word which is assigned Strong’s number G450 is translated with the three English words “be risen again”. Now here is the definition of that particular Greek word:

aniste mi an- is’- tay- mee From G303 and G2476; to stand up (literally or figuratively, transitively or intransitively): – arise, lift up, raise up (again), rise (again), stand up (- right).

So the word ‘again’ is in parentheses and is added to the text by the translators. It isn’t a bad translation if ‘again’ is understood as ‘living again’ after having lived before. But because it can be mistaken as having “risen before”, as you put it, it would be a more literal translation to translate that Greek word ‘anistemi’ simply as ‘risen’, or ‘arose’, as it is most often translated. Here is this same Greek word ‘anistemi’. Notice how it is translated in this story of Christ raising a little 12 year old girl from the dead.

Mar 5:42 AndG2532 straightwayG2112 theG3588 damselG2877 arose, G450 andG2532 walked; G4043 forG1063 she wasG2258 of the age of twelveG1427 years. G2094 And they were astonishedG1839 with a greatG3173 astonishment. G1611

I hope this makes it clear for you what this Greek word ‘anistemi’ means. It literally means “to stand up”, and is used in reference to those who have died ‘standing up again’. It is never used in reference to anyone having died and been resurrected before.
Your brother who is also struggling to know the mind of God and His Son (Joh 17:3),

Mike

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