1 Peter 3:6b -- Aorist

From: John Barach (jbarach@telusplanet.net)
Date: Thu Sep 16 1999 - 01:00:23 EDT


Here's a "little Greek" question for you. 1 Peter 3:6b reads


Some commentators (e.g., J. N. D. Kelly, Peter H. Davids) argue that the
use of the aorist (EGENHQHTE) is significant. Davids, for instance,
says, "The term 'are' is aorist in Greek, indicating that at a point in
time they became daughters of Sarah, probably referring to their
conversion and baptism."

My question is whether this is a valid inference from the aorist aspect
of the verb here. To further complicate matters, the two participles
AGAQOPOIOUSAI and FOBOUMENAI are generally taken as conditionals: "if
you are doing good" and "if you are not being frightened." It seems a
little strange to me, though not impossible, to take the main verb as
referring to a point in the past when the modifying participles deal
with ongoing conditions ("you became Sarah's daughters at a point in the
past if you are continuing to do good now and are not being frightened
by any terror/intimidation now").

Thanks in advance for your help!



John Barach (403) 317-1950
Pastor, Trinity Reformed Church (URCNA)
113 Stafford Blvd. N.
Lethbridge, AB
T1H 6E3

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