1 John 1:9

Mark Wilson emory2oo2 at hotmail.com
Tue Aug 14 13:20:47 EDT 2001

I'll try this bold post and see what happens:

It seems to me that there is a tendency to convert
the PORTRAYAL of an action (whether by an Aorist
or Present) with how that action ACTUALLY unfolds/unfolded,
or worse: how the action CAN ONLY BE VIEWED.

In this verse, we have an action described by
the word hOMOLOGEW. The exact same event, no
matter how often/infrequently it is repeated,
can equally be described by a Present or Aorist.

The reason is because the Present or Aorist is
how the writer wants to PORTRAY the event. The problem
to me is to see an Aorist and say: the action here
happened at a point in time, or to see a Present and
say: the action here is ongoing or habitual.

I think Porter has done some excellent work in showing
how grammatical aspect must be separated from
the actual occurrence of an action/state/event.

In 1:9, the act of confessing may very well be a daily
occurrence, but a writer is certainly free to use
an Aorist when referencing this oft repeated confession.

Likewise, the writer could reference this SAME confessing with
a Present. The Aorist or Present does not change HOW
based on how the writer wants to portray the action.

The apparent contradiction in John ("does not sin") is not
resolved by any tense use, since tense can only portray an
action. To resolve what some feel is a contradiction can be
resolved by other means.

My thoughts,

Mark Wilson

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