Re: How to memorize verb forms...

Carlton Winbery (
Tue, 17 Dec 1996 17:16:54 +0400

Jeffrey Gibson wrote;
>On Tue, 17 Dec 1996, Somi Chuhon wrote:
>> There's only one place to find "biblical Greek" and that's in the text!
>> Perhaps the concern to know other verb forms are due to a need to look
>> outside of the text in order to inform the text of its interpretation (I'm
>> taking a wild guess here). Frankly, [personal opinion], you don't really
>> need "outside" Greek to know that the text is saying "inside."
>This seems to asssume that the full semantic range of a given verb
>appears in its various instances in biblical literature. Not only is this
>a questionable assumption with verbs which appear frequently in the NT or
>LXX, but it hardly applies to hapax legomena. It is doubtful that the
>meaning, say, of ANASTENAZW (a hapax at Mk 8.12) is available to us from
>within Mark. My investigations of this word have shown that
>commentators, working only with the context that the text of Mark
>provides (and not the wider "outside" context of how the verb was
>used by other non-biblical writers), are consistently wrong in
>stating what ANASTENAZW signifies. They generally take it to mean "to
>express anger or frustration". But in all of the "outside" instances it
>NEVER means this. Rather it is used to signify and express "dismay",
>"profound distresss that one is caught up in a painful situation
>from which there is no escape".
I must agree with Jeffrey here and add that I know of no dictionary that is
at all helpful in reading the NT that is not the result of a broad study of
Greek literature available to us from antiquity. It would be like saying I
want a dictionary of the English language that contains words and meanings
that have been used only in church.

I think that we had a similar thread some time ago in which it was clear
that the most useful tools for the study of the NT are those based on a
study of the language over a long period and wide geographical areas.

Carlton L. Winbery
Fogleman Professor of Religion
Louisiana College
Fax (318) 442-4996
Phone (318) 487-7241