Future Perfect Paraphrastic

From: Bruce Terry (terry@bible.acu.edu)
Date: Thu Nov 16 1995 - 17:59:57 EST

Well, let's try this again. It got lost in last week's problems. My thanks
to Carl Conrad for retrieving it from the B-Greek-Digest since I usually don't
send myself a copy of what I post (you wouldn't think I've been working with
computers for 27 years now :).

On Mon, 30 Oct 1995, Carlton L. Winbery wrote:

>present periphrastic involves the present of EIMI + the present ptc.
>imperfect peri. " imperfect of EIMI + the present ptc.
>future peri. " future of EIMI + the present ptc.
>aorist peri. " imperfect of EIMI + aorist ptc.
>perfect peri. " present of EIMI + perfect ptc.
>pluperfect peri. " imperfect of EIMI + perfect ptc.

This good concise list omits the future perfect periphastic:

future perfect peri. involves the future of EIMI + the perfect ptc.

The most notable example of this is in Matt. 16:19 where we find ESTAI
DEDEMENON and ESTAI LELUMENON. The NASV translates these as future perfects
in English "shall have been bound" and "shall have been loosed." Somewhere
(for the life of me I cannot remember where) F.F. Bruce has written that such
a translation misses the meaning of the Greek. Unfortunately, he does not go
on to explain what that meaning is.

This being the case, I would like to float another idea on B-Greek and see if
it gets sunk.

The basic significance of the perfect aspect (linguists should read "stative
aspect") seems to be action which happens at a single point in time but which
has continued results. This being the case the future perfect in Greek would
signify action in the future that produces a continued state. By way of
contrast, in English the future perfect is used for action which is past
relative to a future point in time. If I have correctly described the
significance of the Greek future perfect, a suitable English translation of
the words above in Matt. 16:19 would be "shall stay bound" and "shall stay

Well, let's see whether this one floats or sinks.

Bruce Terry E-MAIL: terry@bible.acu.edu
Box 8426, ACU Station Phone: 915/674-3759
Abilene, Texas 79699 Fax: 915/674-3769

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