Date: Fri Mar 01 2002 - 23:26:40 EST
In a message dated 3/1/2002 8:04:43 PM Eastern Standard Time,
>POREUQENTES OUN MAQHTEUSATE PANTA TA EQNH BAPTIZONTES >AUTOUS EIS TO ONOMA
>TOU PATROS KAI TOU hUIOU KAI TOU AHIOU PNEUMATOS DIDASKONTES >AUTOUS THREIN
>PANTA OSA ENETEILAMHN hUNIN KAI IDOU EGO MEQ hUMWN EIMI >PASAS TAS HMERAS EWS
>Question: How do the participles BAPTIZONTES and DIDASKONTES relate to >the
>main verb MAQHTEUSATE from a strictly grammatical standpoint? No theology
>please, just grammar/syntax.
Here's what Wallace (_Greek Grammar Beyond the Basic_) has to say on p. 645.
Several observations are in order. First, notice that the first participle,
POREUQENTES, fits the structural pattern for the attendant circumstance
participle: aorist participle preceding an aorist main verb (in this case,
Second, there is no good grammatical ground for giving the participle a mere
temporal idea. To turn POREUQENTES into an adverbial participle is to turn
the Great Commission into the Great Suggestion! Virtually all instances in
narrative literature of aorist participle + aorist imperative involve an
attendant circumstance participle. In Matthew, in particular, every other
instance of the aorist participle of poreuvomai followed by an aorist main
verb (either indicative or imperative) is clearly attendant circumstance.
Third, we must first read this commission in its historical context, not from
the perspective of a late twentieth-century reader. These apostles of the
soon-to-be inaugurated church did not move from Jerusalem until after the
martyrdom of Stephen. The reason for this reticence was due, in part at
least, to their Jewish background. As Jews, they were ethnocentric in their
evangelism (bringing prospective proselytes to Jerusalem); now as Christians,
they were to be ektocentric, bringing the gospel to those who were non-Jews.
In many ways, the book of Acts is a detailed account of how these apostles
accomplished the command of Matt 28:19–20.78
Finally, the other two participles (BAPTIZONTES, DIDASKONTES) should not be
taken at attendant circumstance. First, they do not fit the normal pattern
for attendant circumstance participles (they are present tense and follow the
main verb). And second, they obviously make good sense as participles of
means; i.e., the means by which the disciples were to make disciples was to
baptize and then to teach.
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