But Don, this seems circular to me. One would first have to
agree that past time is the 'essential meaning' of the aorist
indicative for your statement to be convincing. Moreover, if I
am following this correctly, this is the exact thing that Mari
is saying is NOT the case. Therefore, in an investigation to
find out what is the essence of the aorist indicative, I think
we should put aside the assumption of past-time as a 'essential
meaning' and simply look at the evidence.
Also, I would agree wholeheartedly that one must look well
beyond the NT if one seeks to make grammatical point about Greek
per se. This is my beef with scholars making new rules based
solely on the Gramcord database. For these arguments to have
weight, I think one must consider the rest of the literature of
the Koine period, particularly the Apostolic Fathers, Josephus,
and even Philo and the many non-Jewish/Christian Koine writings
of the time.
And do not say, "When I have time, I shall study," for you may
never have time.
Rabbi Hillel Abot 2.4