EGW EIMI in GJohn (was Present tence copulative verbs)

From: Jeffrey B. Gibson (
Date: Tue Sep 01 1998 - 15:12:02 EDT

I have only glanced at the contributions to this thread, so forgive me
if I say something that has already been said. But it seems to me that
that waht we have been experiencing in the debate about EGW EIMI and the
inferences that are supposedly to be drawn about time and existence from
the grammar of the phrase is akin to a "debate" I once had with one of
my students over the meaning of the title _A Clockwork Orange_ by
Anthony Burgess. The student went into a labyrinthian explanation of
what the title meant and implied, and built a conceptual mountain out of
a molehill, based on what he took to be the implicatures of its wording
when he should have been keeping in mind that the title is simply an
idiom the meaning of which is *not* to be derived from the syntax or the
grammar in which its constituent words are cast (in this instance a
British idiom somewhat equivalent to "mechanical man"). So, too, I
think, is EGW EIMI. That is to say, it is an idiom which seems to be
grounded in Isaiah 63:25, and was used to signify (cf. Mk. 13:6) the
divine presence and even a claim to divine authority, but says nothing
about preexistence, let alone continuation over time. For a full
discussion of this, please see Appendix IV: EGO EIMI __"I AM", pp.
532-538 in Vol. 1 of Ray Brown's Anchor Commentary on GJohn.


Jeffrey Gibson
Jeffrey B. Gibson
7423 N. Sheridan Road #2A
Chicago, Illinois 60626

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