[b-greek] This usage is quite rare

From: Mark Wilson (emory2oo2@hotmail.com)
Date: Mon Oct 16 2000 - 23:52:49 EDT


What is the practical value of this statement I read in grammars:

"This usage is quite rare."

For example, Dr. Daniel Wallace uses this expression in his discussion on
the Gnomic Aorist.

"This usage is quite rare in the NT." (pg. 562, GGBB)

The examples he cites seem beyond "conclusive."

So what difference does it make if the occurrences of this construct are
rare? Does this help us in any way when considering a specific passage? Can
we understand 1 Pet. 1:24 in any other way than a gnomic?

For example, I might, on theological grounds, see several Gnomic Aorists in
Romans 5:12-21. For me, the Gnomic is not as "rare" as it is with Wallace.
But this seems to define "grammar" from a theological viewpoint. This is a
bit uncomfortable to me.

In fact, I seem to recall Wallace (??) suggesting that Passives are more
frequent among Middle/Passive forms, but does not this reflect, to some
extent, his theological bent?.............. Yes! It is Wallace. I just
openned to page 418. His comment is remarkable to me:

"Second, in the perfect tense, the middle-passive form is always to be taken
as a passive in the NT (Lk 6:40, 1 Cor. 1:10, Heb. 11:3)."

As far as I am concerned, his example in 1 Cor. 1:10 could be easily taken
as a middle. "perfectly join yourselves together..."

This seems to be circular reasoning.

I guess I am having a hard time seeing any utility in "this usage occurs
quite infrequently."

Thank you,

Mark Wilson

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