From: Carl W. Conrad (email@example.com)
Date: Sun May 17 1998 - 06:43:10 EDT
At 6:05 PM -0400 5/16/98, clayton stirling bartholomew wrote:
>In a recent book many of you will want to read:
>Silva, Moises, Explorations in Exegetical Method: Galatians as a Test Case,
>Moises Silva says:
>"I do not recall ever seeing one example of good exegesis that depends on the
>interpreter's ability to explain why one aspect rather than another was used.
>Convincing interpretations depend on other factors.
>. . . if the main basis for an interpretation is a detail of this kind, we
>would be foolhardy to take such an exegesis seriously. Aspectual distinctions
>are largely determined by the context and thus to some extent lie outside the
>choice of the speaker or writer.
>. . . it is most doubtful that a speaker or writer would make use of this
>syntactical subtlety as the means to get a point across."
>Kind of sums up my views on the subject rather nicely.
I'm not sure how much the above statements actually imply (and I DON"T
REALLY want to get caught up in Paul's--Dixon's, that is--argument about
what IMPLIES means, although I'll agree with the common-sense people that
reasonable guesses may be made as to intention even where they are not
strictly implied): they do say that considerations of aspect won't govern
the exegesis primarily, but they don't seem to me to rule out secondary
"aspects" in interpretation. The particular case in point for me is the
Jesus-saying in Mk 8:34par: EI TIS QELEI OPISW MOU AKOLOUQEIN, APARNHSASQW
hEAUTON KAI ARATW TON STAURON AUTOU KAI AKOLOUQEITW MOI. I'm not even sure
that the passage can be translated properly in a way that conveys the
difference between the first two imperatives as aorist and the third one as
a present imperative; it is a powerful statement in any case, but I can't
really believe that the fact that the first two imperatives are aorist and
the last one progressive is a negligible one for full understanding of what
the Greek is saying.
>If J. Gresham Machen were alive and teaching NT Greek today, he would not be
>using Machen's grammar published in 1923.
Concluding unscientific postscript--in English, not Danish, to anticipate
the objection to my last 'concluding unscientific postscript--, implying
whatever common sense makes of it: I hate to get caught up in this game,
but although I do think Machen's grammar is worth about 25c, I have to say
that I differ with Clay in this too, that I admire his textbook
considerably more than I admire the man. Nor am I so sure that he would not
still be using his own textbook, fundamentally.
Carl W. Conrad
Department of Classics, Washington University
Summer: 1647 Grindstaff Road/Burnsville, NC 28714/(828) 675-4243
firstname.lastname@example.org OR email@example.com
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