Present Participial ὑπάρχων of Phil. 2.6?

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R. Perkins
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Present Participial ὑπάρχων of Phil. 2.6?

Post by R. Perkins » April 20th, 2016, 2:12 am

(Phil. 2.6; NA28): ὃς ἐν μορφῇ θεοῦ ὑπάρχων οὐχ ἁρπαγμὸν ἡγήσατο τὸ εἶναι ἴσα θεῷ,

It's my understanding that this present participle receives it's "time-ness" from that of the main verb. That is, participles are kind of like someone who never wears a watch & is always asking others "What time is it?" The participle has to ask the main verb of the sentence "What time do I receive?" Below are some quotes that were sent to me:

Dana and Mantey, page 229-230, The Tense of The Participle, 202. Though the tense of the participle never conveys an independent expression of time, yet its relation to its context usually involves a temporal significance. That is, the time relations of the participle do not belong to its tense, but to the sense of the context.

“Time with the participle is purely relative” (R-S. 197).

Essentials Of New Testament Greek, Ray Summers, Page 97, Tense in participles has to do with kind of action in the same manner as verbs. The time of action in participles is different from a verb in that it is determined by the time of the main verb.

Learn To Read New Testament Greek, David Alan Black, Page 150, It is important to understand that participles do not, properly speaking, have “tense.” That is, they do not refer to past, present, or future time.

A Primer Of Biblical Greek, N. Clayton Croy, Page 105, The tense of the participle has nothing to do with the time of the action, but only with the “kind” of action. A present tense participle does not necessarily denote action occurring in present time; it denotes linear or ongoing action. In actual practice, present participles usually denote action simultaneous with that of the main verb, but this tendency derives from context, not the nature of the tense. The participle is fundamentally nontemporal.

New Testament Greek, James Allen Hewett, Page 146, The participle itself is timeless; it does not have inherent time value. Nevertheless, one speaks of it as present, aorist, future, or perfect. It takes on temporal value in relation to the main verb of a given context. What is denoted by tense per se in participles is kind of action.

A Basic Grammar Of New Testament Greek, George Aristotle Hadjiantiniou, Page 170, The tenses in the participle are devoid of the time element in the sense with which we are familiar in the indicative. The time element in the participle depends strictly on that of the principle verb in the sentence.

Robertson (LG) Page 342, “The Term Tense. It is from the French word temps, ‘time,’ and is a misnomer and a hindrance to the understanding of this aspect of the verb form. Time does come finally to enter relatively into the indicative and in a limited way affects the optative, infinitive and participle. But it is not the original nor the general idea of what we call tense. Indeed it cannot be shown of any verb-form that it had originally any reference to time. We must therefore dismiss time from our minds in the study of the forms of the tenses as well as in the matter of syntax. It is too late to get a new name, however.”

Robertson (LG) Page 891, “Participle. The present participle, like the present inf., is timeless and durative. (a) The Time Of The Present Participle Relative. The time comes from the principle verb. Thus in Ac. 4:34, 37 the time is past; in Mt. 6:27 the time is present; in Mt. 10:22, 6:18, 24:30 it is future.”

If my understanding here is correct, the participle ὑπάρχων would derive it's "time-ness" from the aorist ἡγήσατο, indicating simple past time (i.e., to the writing of Paul's letter to the Philippians). Is this correct, or am I missing something in The Carmen Christi?

Greatly appreciate this forum & count it a blessing to be able to come here to learn :)!
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cwconrad
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Re: Present Participial ὑπάρχων of Phil. 2.6?

Post by cwconrad » April 20th, 2016, 10:38 am

It's not quite clear what the question here is; it looks like you've answered it yourself; it's sort of like you want us to check over your homework assignment before you hand it in. It will very likely be accepted. :)
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οὔτοι ἀπ’ ἀρχῆς πάντα θεοὶ θνητοῖς ὑπέδειξαν,
ἀλλὰ χρόνῳ ζητέοντες ἐφευρίσκουσιν ἄμεινον. (Xenophanes, Fragment 16)

Carl W. Conrad
Department of Classics, Washington University (Retired)

R. Perkins
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Re: Present Participial ὑπάρχων of Phil. 2.6?

Post by R. Perkins » April 21st, 2016, 2:47 am

cwconrad wrote:It's not quite clear what the question here is; it looks like you've answered it yourself; it's sort of like you want us to check over your homework assignment before you hand it in. It will very likely be accepted. :)
My apologies. No homework assignment (not currently taking classes) - was just wondering if I was understanding these grammars correctly.

What throws me off is, if the participles do not posses inherent "time-ness" then why do they even possess tense (as in the participle charts)? That is, if the participle receives its time of action externally - why does it have tense?

I'm sure I'm revealing my elementary - Greek I - understanding in the question, but that's why I'm here :oops:.
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Re: Present Participial ὑπάρχων of Phil. 2.6?

Post by Stephen Carlson » April 21st, 2016, 4:56 am

R. Perkins wrote:What throws me off is, if the participles do not posses inherent "time-ness" then why do they even possess tense (as in the participle charts)? That is, if the participle receives its time of action externally - why does it have tense?
The labels of participles as "present" and "aorist" don't express tense but stems, and these stems are aspectual. In other words, the participles don't possess tense at all: they possess aspect. The "present" stem of participles, etc., conveys imperfective aspect (roughly, not complete, among various formulations), and the "aorist" stem of participles, etc., conveys perfective aspect (roughly, complete). As a grammatical category, tense only exists in the indicative.
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cwconrad
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Re: Present Participial ὑπάρχων of Phil. 2.6?

Post by cwconrad » April 21st, 2016, 5:13 am

R. Perkins wrote:
cwconrad wrote:It's not quite clear what the question here is; it looks like you've answered it yourself; it's sort of like you want us to check over your homework assignment before you hand it in. It will very likely be accepted. :)
My apologies. No homework assignment (not currently taking classes) - was just wondering if I was understanding these grammars correctly.

What throws me off is, if the participles do not posses inherent "time-ness" then why do they even possess tense (as in the participle charts)? That is, if the participle receives its time of action externally - why does it have tense?

I'm sure I'm revealing my elementary - Greek I - understanding in the question, but that's why I'm here :oops:.
Now it's my turn to apologize; attempts at humor in e-messages can too easily misfire, even when the emojis are added. I never seriously thought you were doing homework. But your citation of several different standard authorities and/or textbooks on the question made it appear that you were backing up a stance that you were taking and asking whether that stance was the right one. I thought it was -- and that there was no need to cite a number of "authorities" on the matter.

On the other hand, you rightly note that there's been a lot of brouhaha about the "timelessness" of the Greek tenses; despite the recurrent reassurances by most of those taking a stance on the mater that they're not talking about the indicative tenses, the fact that one school argues that even the indicative tenses are timeless has resulted in confusion among ordinary students of the language who are not involved in the give-and-take of controversy.

My own take on the passage about which you ask is that the participle ὑπάρχων refers to the status of the subject at the time of the conclusion drawn as referred to in ἡγήσατο.is that you are interpreting it rightly: he was formally divine at the time that he judged as he judged. I think you got it right and I don't think you needed to cite the array of grammarians' judgments on the matter -- that's why I responded as I did.
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οὔτοι ἀπ’ ἀρχῆς πάντα θεοὶ θνητοῖς ὑπέδειξαν,
ἀλλὰ χρόνῳ ζητέοντες ἐφευρίσκουσιν ἄμεινον. (Xenophanes, Fragment 16)

Carl W. Conrad
Department of Classics, Washington University (Retired)

Stephen Hughes
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Re: Present Participial ὑπάρχων of Phil. 2.6?

Post by Stephen Hughes » April 21st, 2016, 7:36 pm

Stephen Carlson wrote:As a grammatical category, tense only exists in the indicative.
R. Perkins wrote:If my understanding here is correct, the participle ὑπάρχων would derive it's "time-ness" from the aorist ἡγήσατο, indicating simple past time (i.e., to the writing of Paul's letter to the Philippians).
Even in the indicative, there is not such a correspondence between the Greek aorist indicative and the English simple past tense, to make an assumption like that.

The aorist form ἡγήσατο has to be interpreted in the situation that it is used in. The use of the aorist may be saying "past time ... [relative] to the writing of [the] letter" as you suggest, but that should be something that you conclude after weighing up the other possibilities that the Greek aorist has.

A book like Daniel Wallace's Greek grammar beyond the basics can be used to do that. Going through a list of umpteen aorists all dressed up in fancy names can be daunting, but stick at it. Consider all possibilities, short list them down to two or three, then assign a percentage of probability to all three of your shortlisted possibilities., rather than just choosing the one that seems right to your understanding of the meaning. By having a few in front of you, you will exercise more comparative and evaluative higher-order brain functions. Recognise that your choice - which may well be equ. to English simple past is the preferred option out of many possibilities, rather than the only correct answer. For now, look at the types of aorists that your textbooks list, and verbalise or write down your reasons for choosing or rejecting one or the other of them for this case. Divide or categorise your reasons into grammatical reasons, textual reasons, personal reasons or theological reasons. That will help you to make the process of choice more transparent. Later after training and over time, a reasonably objective way of determining the role and function of the aorist will develop in your reading. Practicing long-handled at the beginning will probably lead to you making reasoned choices as you read in future. Later - a few years later - as you feel that such analysis slows you down, letting context get you to the shortlist then deciding quickly will be a good way forward. Experience will be your teacher in that.
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Γελᾷ δ' ὁ μωρός, κἄν τι μὴ γέλοιον ᾖ
(Menander, Γνῶμαι μονόστιχοι 108)

Wes Wood
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Re: Present Participial ὑπάρχων of Phil. 2.6?

Post by Wes Wood » April 21st, 2016, 8:11 pm

Stephen Hughes wrote:Even in the indicative, there is not such a correspondence between the Greek aorist indicative and the English simple past tense, to make an assumption like that.

The aorist form ἡγήσατο has to be interpreted in the situation that it is used in. The use of the aorist may be saying "past time ... [relative] to the writing of [the] letter" as you suggest, but that should be something that you conclude after weighing up the other possibilities that the Greek aorist has.

A book like Daniel Wallace's Greek grammar beyond the basics can be used to do that. Going through a list of umpteen aorists all dressed up in fancy names can be daunting, but stick at it. Consider all possibilities, short list them down to two or three, then assign a percentage of probability to all three of your shortlisted possibilities., rather than just choosing the one that seems right to your understanding of the meaning. By having a few in front of you, you will exercise more comparative and evaluative higher-order brain functions. Recognise that your choice - which may well be equ. to English simple past is the preferred option out of many possibilities, rather than the only correct answer. For now, look at the types of aorists that your textbooks list, and verbalise or write down your reasons for choosing or rejecting one or the other of them for this case. Divide or categorise your reasons into grammatical reasons, textual reasons, personal reasons or theological reasons. That will help you to make the process of choice more transparent. Later after training and over time, a reasonably objective way of determining the role and function of the aorist will develop in your reading. Practicing long-handled at the beginning will probably lead to you making reasoned choices as you read in future. Later - a few years later - as you feel that such analysis slows you down, letting context get you to the shortlist then deciding quickly will be a good way forward. Experience will be your teacher in that.
:?: :?: :?:
Who are you and what have you done with the real Stephen Hughes! :lol: Sorry, for the off topic post, but I couldn't resist.

In an attempt to remain near the topic at hand, what are some reasons why the participle could not be viewed as the main point of reference or topic around which the main verb is structured or interpreted? Please understand that I am not proposing anything or attempting to challenge the status quo, but I don't think I have heard/read any of the reasons for the current understanding. Thoughts?
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Ἀσπάζομαι μὲν καὶ φιλῶ, πείσομαι δὲ μᾶλλον τῷ θεῷ ἢ ὑμῖν.-Ἀπολογία Σωκράτους 29δ

R. Perkins
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Re: Present Participial ὑπάρχων of Phil. 2.6?

Post by R. Perkins » April 21st, 2016, 10:36 pm

Stephen Carlson wrote:
R. Perkins wrote:What throws me off is, if the participles do not posses inherent "time-ness" then why do they even possess tense (as in the participle charts)? That is, if the participle receives its time of action externally - why does it have tense?
The labels of participles as "present" and "aorist" don't express tense but stems, and these stems are aspectual. In other words, the participles don't possess tense at all: they possess aspect. The "present" stem of participles, etc., conveys imperfective aspect (roughly, not complete, among various formulations), and the "aorist" stem of participles, etc., conveys perfective aspect (roughly, complete). As a grammatical category, tense only exists in the indicative.
Ahh, yes, forgot about tense only existing in the indicative mood. This is what happens when you don't keep up w. your lessons. Completed Greek I about 8 months ago w. a 95%, but have not stayed on top of it like I should have. In the process of reviewing the text book now just to brush-up, then on to Greek II.
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R. Perkins
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Re: Present Participial ὑπάρχων of Phil. 2.6?

Post by R. Perkins » April 21st, 2016, 10:53 pm

cwconrad wrote:
R. Perkins wrote:
cwconrad wrote:It's not quite clear what the question here is; it looks like you've answered it yourself; it's sort of like you want us to check over your homework assignment before you hand it in. It will very likely be accepted. :)
My apologies. No homework assignment (not currently taking classes) - was just wondering if I was understanding these grammars correctly.

What throws me off is, if the participles do not posses inherent "time-ness" then why do they even possess tense (as in the participle charts)? That is, if the participle receives its time of action externally - why does it have tense?

I'm sure I'm revealing my elementary - Greek I - understanding in the question, but that's why I'm here :oops:.
Now it's my turn to apologize; attempts at humor in e-messages can too easily misfire, even when the emojis are added. I never seriously thought you were doing homework. But your citation of several different standard authorities and/or textbooks on the question made it appear that you were backing up a stance that you were taking and asking whether that stance was the right one. I thought it was -- and that there was no need to cite a number of "authorities" on the matter.

On the other hand, you rightly note that there's been a lot of brouhaha about the "timelessness" of the Greek tenses; despite the recurrent reassurances by most of those taking a stance on the mater that they're not talking about the indicative tenses, the fact that one school argues that even the indicative tenses are timeless has resulted in confusion among ordinary students of the language who are not involved in the give-and-take of controversy.

My own take on the passage about which you ask is that the participle ὑπάρχων refers to the status of the subject at the time of the conclusion drawn as referred to in ἡγήσατο.is that you are interpreting it rightly: he was formally divine at the time that he judged as he judged. I think you got it right and I don't think you needed to cite the array of grammarians' judgments on the matter -- that's why I responded as I did.
Thank you Dr. Conrad. I guess what I'm asking is that if the participle derives its "time-ness" from an aorist, this would seem to denote "simple past" activity (?).

Though I don't want to violate any forum rules (& I sincerely hope I'm not), my take on this passage is that the participle ὑπάρχων refers to the subject's (Christ) status as God enfleshed, which was a time previous to the writing of Paul's letter (i.e., the aorist ἡγήσατο). I base this conclusion also on consistent Pauline usage of μορφῇ & φρονεῖτε that's employed in this text (an entirely different thread :?).

I realize there are varying conclusions of The Carmen Christi (e.g., Dr. Robert Reymond, etc.). Just stating my personal view.
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R. Perkins
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Re: Present Participial ὑπάρχων of Phil. 2.6?

Post by R. Perkins » April 21st, 2016, 11:17 pm

Stephen Hughes wrote:
Stephen Carlson wrote:As a grammatical category, tense only exists in the indicative.
R. Perkins wrote:If my understanding here is correct, the participle ὑπάρχων would derive it's "time-ness" from the aorist ἡγήσατο, indicating simple past time (i.e., to the writing of Paul's letter to the Philippians).
Even in the indicative, there is not such a correspondence between the Greek aorist indicative and the English simple past tense, to make an assumption like that.

The aorist form ἡγήσατο has to be interpreted in the situation that it is used in. The use of the aorist may be saying "past time ... [relative] to the writing of [the] letter" as you suggest, but that should be something that you conclude after weighing up the other possibilities that the Greek aorist has.

A book like Daniel Wallace's Greek grammar beyond the basics can be used to do that. Going through a list of umpteen aorists all dressed up in fancy names can be daunting, but stick at it. Consider all possibilities, short list them down to two or three, then assign a percentage of probability to all three of your shortlisted possibilities., rather than just choosing the one that seems right to your understanding of the meaning. By having a few in front of you, you will exercise more comparative and evaluative higher-order brain functions. Recognise that your choice - which may well be equ. to English simple past is the preferred option out of many possibilities, rather than the only correct answer. For now, look at the types of aorists that your textbooks list, and verbalise or write down your reasons for choosing or rejecting one or the other of them for this case. Divide or categorise your reasons into grammatical reasons, textual reasons, personal reasons or theological reasons. That will help you to make the process of choice more transparent. Later after training and over time, a reasonably objective way of determining the role and function of the aorist will develop in your reading. Practicing long-handled at the beginning will probably lead to you making reasoned choices as you read in future. Later - a few years later - as you feel that such analysis slows you down, letting context get you to the shortlist then deciding quickly will be a good way forward. Experience will be your teacher in that.
Excellent exegetical advice. I have actually already consulted Wallace's GGBB - although I did not look at the various aorists as you suggest (a quick search of the aorist in my software pulled up almost 800 articles :shock:!). But, on pp. 542 & 555 Wallace informs us that "in the indicative mood" the aorist usually represents simple past time. On p. 625 he says that the present participle is "normally contemporaneous in time to the action of the main verb."

Will review your astute observations & suggestions again. I really like the appeal to exegetical integrity.
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