The Perfect Tense
The Kind of Action of the Perfect Tense:
Durative and Punctiliar. Completed action with abiding results.
The Dramatic Perfect
An action completed in the past is conceived in terms of the present time for the sake of vividness. This was a use suited for the orator or the dramatist, and was often used in rhetorical questions. John uses it more than any other New Testament writer. It would be similar to ours, “The first thing you know he has done it.” (It is sometimes referred to as the “Present Perfect.”).
The Intensive Perfect
This use is a strong way of saying that a thing is, denoting an action rather than a state resulting from an action, having the force of an emphatic present. Stress is placed on the existing fact. This is done more forcibly than either the Greek or English present could ever do. This use is primarily used with verbs of senses.
The Extensive Perfect
This use denotes a completed act that has abiding results. It emphasizes that the action took place and still has abiding results. The finished process with its results is expressed, not the existing state. (CF. The Intensive Perfect). This is the most frequent use of the perfect.
The Gnomic Perfect
This use denotes an action that was generally true. It is rare in the New Testament.
The Iterative Perfect
This use denotes repeated action. Completed action is stressed, but something in the context or in the meaning of the word (or both) indicate(s) that the idea of the action was iterative. It is relatively rare in the New Testament.
The Periphrastic Perfect
This use emphasizes an existing state. It is made up of the perfect participle and an auxiliary verb. It does not occur very frequently in the New Testament.
The Future Perfect
This use anticipates an action not yet done, it represents a completed state or condition from the standpoint of future time. It is rare in the New Testament.
© 2017 Luther Walker | All Rights Reserved | ISBN-10: 0-9993211-0-2, ISBN-13: 978-0-9993211-0-2 | This book or any potion thereof may not be reproduced or used in any manner whatsoever without the express written permission of the publisher except for the use of brief quotations in a book review or scholarly journal.