I agree that AMHN LEGW SOI was a pattern of speech Jesus used. Please
believe me when I say that I completely understand your point. I simply
maintain that that the limited number of examples of AMHN LEGW SOI cited by
writers does not necessarily IMPLY that Jesus would not have used "here,"
"there," "in the dark," "in the light," or any other kind of adverb whenever
he wanted to. I think it too weak to form a doctrinal assessment of what
Jesus even LIKELY intended without the benefit of context.
In fact, at Luke 4:25, Luke varies the expression and says "ep alhtheias de
legw humin," or, "I say to you in truth." Here, "ep alhtheias adverbially
modifies "legw humin." As a result, it seems reasonable to conclude that the
expression AMHN LEGW SOI is not to be taken as an inviolable grammatical
mantra. I would say it was simply Jesus' way of saying "What I am about to
say to you is absolutely true [and by implication], Listen to it." And that
is as far as we can reasonably go with it grammatically speaking.
>>For SHMERON to be taken as a modifier of LEGW there would have to be some
compelling reason from the context requiring that to be more likely than its
modifying ESHi. Perhaps this is where a theological discussion of the
meaning of paradeisos comes in. BAGD says of this word, "In our lit. not of
any formal garden or park, but only paradise .... a place of blessedness
above the earth...." 2Co 12:4 refers to it as a place to which one (Paul?)
was caught up (hARPAZW) in rapturous vision of the unspeakable glories of
True. However, I believe that Bible Translator L. Reinhardt's point was that
the evildoer would not have understood it in this light. It was and is not
my intent to promote a discussion of the distinction between "heaven",
"paradeisos" and the "hades" to which Jesus went that very day (Acts 2:27).
But "hades" is an interesting word study.