Category Archives: Aorist

Greek verb tense

Aorist tense

Following is a couple paragraphs which I copied and pasted from a Greek and Hebrew Interlinear online and is also available for download. Before going forward, some familiarity with the aorist tense is in order, to more fully understand the sacrifice and offerings of Jesus Christ in context of the salvation of mankind and the perfecting of the body of Christ in this age. Unfortunately the links provided do not function anymore. The first paragraph lists the book source the information provided comes from and the second paragraph I believe was written by A.E. Knoch, and is important in that it states how frequently the Aorist verb tense is used in the New Testament. Luke

“” In “A Grammar of the Greek New Testament in the Light of Historical Research” Prof. Robertson has this to say regarding the translation of the Aorist into English: “The Greek Aorist ind., as can be readily seen, is not the exact equivalent of any tense in any other language. It has nuances all its own, many of them difficult, or well nigh impossible to reproduce in English. We merely do the best we can in English to translate in one way or another the total result of a word, context and tense. Certainly one cannot say that the English translations have been successful with the Greek Aorist…(Page 847). The English past will translate the Greek aorist in many cases where we prefer `have’… (Page 848). The Greek aorist and the English past do not exactly correspond….The Greek aorist covers much more ground than the English past…The aorist in Greek is so rich in meaning that the English labors and groans to express it. As a matter of fact the Greek aorist is translatable into almost every English tense except the imperfect…” Again, “The aorist is, strictly speaking, timeless.””

“The tenses in biblical Greek present a logical and efficient system of temporal statement. This system is much more informative than the English system. In addition to the past, present and future tenses, Greek recognizes the need for a tense called the aorist. As the name indicates the meaning of this tense is that it abstains from indicating a timeframe (aoristos, ‘without horizon’, ‘un-defined’, ‘indefinite’). Actually, the utility of the aorist is so great that it is the most frequently used tense of a main verb in the New Testament, it being found in 43% of all main verbs.”