Re: Translation of Rev 3:8

From: Eric Weiss (
Date: Tue Feb 25 1997 - 22:00:56 EST

Well, if you want to say that the door is still opening, I guess you
would use the present tense. If you want to say that the door was opened
at some point in the past, but not say anything about whether it is
still open, you'd use the aorist. If you want to say that it was opened
at some time in the past, but was subsequently shut, I guess you'd use
the pluperfect. If you want to say that the door had been opened and was
still standing open, you'd use the perfect. It's interesting that you
brought this up, because just last week I was thinking about this (I
recalled it from Mounce's book when I was reading Revelation) and I
thought, "Well, HOW ELSE would you say that the door was standing open?
I mean, is there something REALLY SIGNIFICANT about the use of the
perfect tense here, as the Exegetical Insight in Mounce's chapter seems
to say - or is it really the only option if that's what you want to
say?" Offhand I concluded that the perfect was used because that's what
you'd have to use. Carl Conrad's response that "I don't think there's
any standard adjective in Koine Greek for "open"--and the fundamental
sense of the perfect is to indicate a present condition" seems to
support my off-the-cuff conclusion. I wouldn't be dismayed by a
translation that says "an open door" - I mean, in English that would
still imply that someone had opened it - right? - and that it was still

"Eric S. and Karol Ann Weiss"

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