Fwd: Meaning of the perfect tense
CWestf5155 at aol.com
CWestf5155 at aol.com
Tue Jan 9 16:46:54 EST 2001
In a message dated 01/09/2001 1:44:55 PM Mountain Standard Time,
emory2oo2 at hotmail.com writes:
> You wrote:
> >Neither am I saying that the author could not be holding to a view of
> >perseverance of the saints--you just couldn't prove that it indicates "the
> >permanency of the step of salvation" by the use of the perfect tense here.
> >You would need that to come from further information in the context. In
> >words, theoretically, this construction could occur in a discussion about
> >perseverance of the saints and does not exclude the possibility.
> Yes. THAT is what I was trying to say. The Perfect tense does not
> it, which is what I understood you to say in the earlier post.
> I think your wording here is much clearer, namely, that the Perfect tense
> can not be used to prove OR disprove perseverance. I understood your
> previous post to say that the Perfect tense positively asserts that the
> "permanency of the step of salvation" can not be supported. But that would
> be incorrect. The Perfect tense does not semantically exclude such a
> possibility, nor does it semantically include it. It simply makes no
> assertion about it.
> In other words, to say that the on-going results of a situation are not
> semantically part of the Perfect goes beyond the Perfect tense itself.
> is, whether the results continue forever or not (in actuality) is simply
> addressed by the Perfect tense at all. Am I correct?
Yes, you're right.
I was interacting only with Rienecker's statement: 'THE PERFECT TENSE
indicates the permenancy of the step of salvation'. And I think that his
view is a fair inference from the traditional definition of the perfect,
though not inevitable.
I guess that my comments would have been less open to misinterpretation (with
a suspected theological slant!) if Jonathan had chosen a potentially less
explosive example about what the perfect means--but this one is really
interesting. It is much like those 'abused aorist' passages where complex
theological issues have found support from the simple use of a 'once for all'
definition of the aorist.
PhD Student, Roehampton
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