95. The tenses of the dependent moods have in general no reference to time, but characterize the action of the verb in respect to its progress only, representing it as in progress, or completed, or indefinitely, simply as an event. HA. 851; G. 1272, 1273; G.MT. 85.

96. The Present of the Dependent Moods is used to represent an action as in progress or as repeated. It may be altogether timeless, the action being thought of without reference to the time of its occurrence; or its time, as past, present, or future, may be involved in the function of the mood, or may be indicated by the context.

Phil. 3:1; ta. auvta. gra,fein u`mi/n evmoi. me.n ouvk ovknhro,n, to be writing the same things to you, to me indeed is not irksome.

Matt. 5:23;  a;fej evkei/ to. dw/ro,n sou e;mprosqen tou/ qusiasthri,ou, therefore thou shalt be offering thy gift at the altar.

Mark 12:33; kai. to. avgapa/n auvto.n evx o[lhj th/j kardi,aj  . . . kai. evx o[lhj th/j sune,sewj kai. evx o[lhj th/j ivscu,oj kai. to. avgapa/n to.n plhsi,on w`j e`auto.n perisso,tero,n evstin pa,ntwn tw/n o`lokautwma,twn kai. qusiw/n, and to love him with all the heart . . . is much more than all whole burnt offerings and sacrifices.

97. PERIPHRASTIC FORM OF THE PRESENT. A periphrastic Present Infinitive, formed by adding a Present Participle to the Present Infinitive of eivmi, and a periphrastic Present Imperative, formed by adding a Present Participle to the Present Imperative of eivmi, occur rarely in the New Testament.  Luke 9:18; 11:1; Matt. 5:25; Luke 19:17. Cf. 20, and 431.

98. The Aorist of the Dependent Moods represents the action expressed by the verb as a simple event or fact, without reference either to its progress or to the existence of its result. As in the Indicative the verb may be indefinite, inceptive or resultative (cf. 35), and when indefinite may refer to a momentary or extended action or to a series of events (cf. 39).

The time of the action, if indicated at all, is shown, not by the tense, but by some fact outside of it.

An Aorist Subjunctive after eva,n, o[tan, e[wj etc. is sometimes properly translated by a Perfect or Future Perfect, but only because the context shows that the action is to precede that of the principal verb. In the great majority of cases a Present Subjunctive or a Future is the best translation. See examples under 250, 285, 303, 322.

Luke 9:54; ei;pwmen pu/r katabh/nai/|, shall we bid fire to come down?

John 15:9; mei,nate evn th/| avga,ph| th/| evmh, abide ye in my love.

Luke 17:4; kai. eva.n e`pta,kij th/j h`me,raj a`marth,sh| eivj se. . . . avfh,seij auvtw/, and if he sin against thee seven times in the day . . . thou shalt forgive him.

Acts 15:13; Meta. de. to. sigh/sai auvtou.j avpekri,qh VIa,kwboj, and after they had become silent, James answered.

Acts 11:17; evgw. ti,j h;mhn dunato.j kwlu/sai to.n qeo,n, who was I that I could withstand God?

REM. Compare the Presents and Aorists in the following examples:
Matt. 6:11;  to.n a;rton h`mw/n to.n evpiou,sion do.j h`mi/n sh,meron, give us this day our daily bread.

Luke 11:3; to.n a;rton h`mw/n to.n evpiou,sion di,dou h`mi/n to. kaqV h`me,ran, give us day by day our daily bread.

Acts 18:9; mh. fobou/( avlla. la,lei kai. mh. siwph,sh|j, be not in fear, but [continue to] speak and hold not thy peace.

Matt. 5:17; ouvk h=lqon katalu/sai avlla. plhrw/sai, I came not to destroy, but to fulfil.

John 9:4; h`ma/j dei/ evrga,zesqai ta. e;rga tou/ pe,myanto,j me e[wj h`me,ra evsti,n, we must work [be doing] the works of him that sent me while it is day.

99. The Future Optative does not occur in the New Testament.

The Future Infinitive denotes time relatively to the time of the principal verb. It is thus an exception to the general principle of the timelessness of the dependent moods.

Acts 23:30; mhnuqei,shj de, moi evpiboulh/j eivj to.n a;ndra e;sesqai, and when it was shown to me that there would be a plot against the man.
100. The Infinitive me,llein with the Infinitive of another verb dependent on it has the force of a Future Infinitive of the latter verb. The dependent Infinitive is usually a Present, sometimes a Future. It is regularly a Future in the New Testament in the case of the verb eivmi,.
Acts 28:6; oi` de. prosedo,kwn auvto.n me,llein pi,mprasqai h' katapi,ptein a;fnw nekro,n, but they expected that he would swell or fall down suddenly. See also Acts 19:27; 27:10, etc.
101. The Perfect of the Dependent Moods is used of completed action. As in the Indicative, the thought may be directed both to the action and its result, or only to the result. The time of the action is indicated, as in the Present and Aorist, not by the tense but by the context or by the function of the mood.
Acts 25:25; evgw. de. katelabo,mhn mhde.n a;xion auvto.n qana,tou peprace,nai, but I found that he had committed nothing worthy of death.

Acts 26:32; avpolelu,sqai evdu,nato o` a;nqrwpoj ou-toj, this man might have been set at liberty.

Mark 4:39;  Siw,pa( pefi,mwso, peace, be still.

102. AN INTENSIVE PERFECT may occur in the dependent moods as in the Indicative.
1 Tim. 6:17; toi/j plousi,oij evn tw/| nu/n aivw/ni para,ggelle mh. u`yhlofronei/n mhde. hvlpike,nai evpi. plou,tou avdhlo,thti, charge them that are rich in this present world, that they be not high minded, nor have their hope set on the uncertainty of riches.
103. PERIPHRASTIC FORM OF THE PERFECT. In the New Testament as in classical Greek, the Perfect Subjunctive Passive is formed by adding a Perfect Participle to the Present Subjunctive of the verb eivmi.  These forms are in the New Testament most commonly Perfects of Existing State. John 16:24; 17:19; 2 Cor. 1:9; etc. See also Luke 12:35, which furnishes an instance of a periphrastic Perfect Imperative, enjoining the maintenance of the state denoted by the Perfect Participle. Cf. 20 and 431.


The general principle that the tenses of the dependent moods characterize the action of the verb only as respects progress and are properly timeless holds also respecting the Infinitive after prepositions. The Infinitive itself is properly timeless, though the time-relation is usually suggested by the meaning of the preposition or by this combined with that which the tense implies respecting the progress of the action.

105. By meta, with the Infinitive antecedence of the action denoted by the Infinitive to that denoted by the principal verb is expressed, but this meaning manifestly lies in the preposition, not in the tense of the verb. That the Aorist Infinitive is almost constantly used (the Perfect occurs once, Heb. 10:15) is natural, since in dating one event by another the latter is usually conceived of simply as an event without reference to its progress. See Matt. 26:32; Luke 12:5; Acts 1:3; 1 Cor. 11:25, etc.

106. By pro, with the Infinitive antecedence of the action of the principal verb to that of the Infinitive is expressed, and the action of the Infinitive is accordingly relatively future. But here also the time relation is expressed wholly by the preposition. The reason for the almost uniform use of the Aorist (the Present ei=nai occurs John 17:5) is the same as in the case of  meta,. See Luke 2:21; 22:15; John 1:48.

107. After eivj and pro,j the Infinitive usually refers to an action which is future with respect to the principal verb. This also results from the meaning of the prepositions, which, expressing purpose or tendency, necessarily point to an action subsequent to that of the verb which the prepositional phrase limits. When pro,j means with reference to, the time relation is indicated only by the necessary relation of the things spoken of. See Luke 18:1. All three tenses of the Infinitive occur after eivj and both Present and Aorist after p,ro,j, the difference marked by the tense being not of time but of progress. See Rom. 12:2; Phil. 1:23; Heb. 11:3; Matt.6:1; Mark 13:22. Cf. 409-414.

108. After dia, the three Infinitives distinguish the action as respects the writer’s conception of its progress, as continued, completed, or indefinite. Time relations are secondary and suggested. The Aorist Infinitive occurs only in Matt. 24:12, where to. plhqunqh/nai th.n avnomi,an apparently refers to the multiplication of iniquity as a fact of that time without exclusive reference to its preceding the action of the principal verb. The Present Infinitive refers to action in progress usually shown by the context to be contemporaneous with the action of the principal verb. See Matt. 13:5, 6; Acts 12:20; Heb. 10:2; Jas. 4:2. The Perfect Infinitive has its usual force, denoting an action standing complete. The time of the state of completeness appears from the context; it is usually that of the principal verb. See Acts 8:11; 18:2; 27:9; but cf. Mark 6:4, where dede,sqai denotes an action whose result was existing, not at the time of speaking, but at an earlier time. Cf. 408.

109. After evn we naturally expect to find only the Present Infinitive, the preposition by its meaning suggesting an action thought of as in progress; and this is indeed the more common usage. Luke, however, who uses  evn with the Infinitive far more frequently than all the other New Testament writers, has  evn with the Aorist Infinitive nine times, and the same construction occurs in Hebrews twice, and in 1 Corinthians once. Since the Aorist Infinitive conceives of an action simply as an event without thought of its continuance, it is natural to take evn with it in the same sense which the preposition bears with nouns which denote an event rather than a continued action or state (cf. 98), viz, as marking the time at which the action expressed by the principal verb takes place. The preposition in this sense does not seem necessarily to denote exact coincidence, but in no case expresses antecedence. In 1 Cor. 11:21 and Heb. 3:12 the action of the Infinitive cannot be antecedent to that of the principal verb; see also Gen. 19:16. In Luke 9:34 such a relation is very difficult, and in Luke 14:1 improbable in view of the Imperfect tense following. In Luke 2:27; 11:37; 19:15; 24:30; Acts 11:15, the action denoted by the Infinitive, strictly speaking, precedes the action of the principal verb, yet may be thought of by the writer as marking more or less exactly the time at which the action of the verb takes place. As respects the relation of the action to that of the principal verb, the Aorist Infinitive after iv may be compared to the Aorist Indicative after o[te, which simply marks in general the time of the event denoted by the principal verb, leaving it to the context to indicate the precise nature of the chronological relation. See Matt. 12:3; 21:34; 27:31; John 19:6, 30. Similarly indefinite is the use of the English preposition on with verbal nouns, as, e.g., On the completion of his twenty-first year he becomes of legal age; On the arrival of the train the procession will be formed. Luke 3:21 cannot in view of the Aorist tense be rendered, while all the people were being baptized, nor in view of the preposition evn, after all the people had been baptized, but must be understood as affirming that the baptism of Jesus occurred at the time (in general) of the baptism of all the people. Luke 9:36 can only mean, when the voice came, a meaning entirely appropriate to the context. Cf. 415.

110. THE TENSES OF THE DEPENDENT MOODS IN INDIRECT DISCOURSE. The Optative and Infinitive in indirect discourse preserve the conception of the action as respects progress which belonged to the direct discourse. The Present Optative and Infinitive represent tense forms which in the direct discourse denoted action in progress. Similarly the Aorist of these moods represents forms which expressed action indefinitely, and the Perfect stands for forms denoting completed action. The Future represents a Future Indicative of the direct discourse. In the majority of cases each tense of the Optative or Infinitive in indirect discourse stands for the same tense of the Indicative or Subjunctive of the direct form. Yet it is doubtful whether, strictly speaking, the dependent moods in indirect discourse express time-relations. The correspondence of tenses probably rather results from the necessity of preserving the original conception of the action as respects its progress, and the time-relation is conveyed by the context rather than by the tense of the verb.

REM. Cf. Br. 161. “Der opt. und inf. aor. von vergangenen Handlungen als Vertreter des md. aor. in der or. obi. entbehrten ebenso wie opt. mid inf. praes. (§ 158) des Ausdrucks der Zeitbeziehung, die nur aus der Natur der in der Rede in Verbindung gebrachten Verbalbegriffe oder aus der ganzen in Rede stehenden Situation erkaunt wurde.” Cf. G.MT. 86, contra.

111. The Present Optative in indirect discourse in the New Testament usually represents the Present Indicative of the direct form. Luke 1:29; 3:15; Acts 17:11; etc. In Acts 25:16, it stands for a Present Subjunctive of the direct form. The Optative with a;n is taken unchanged from the direct discourse. Luke 1:62; 6:11; etc. The Aorist Optative occurs in indirect discourse only in Acts 25:16, where it represents a Subjunctive of the direct form referring to the future.  Neither the Perfect Optative nor the Future Optative occurs in the New Testament.

112. The Present Infinitive in indirect discourse in the New Testament stands for the Present Indicative of the direct form. Matt. 22:23; Luke 11:18; 20:41; Acts 4:32; 1 Cor. 7:36; 1 John 2:9. Similarly the Perfect Infinitive represents the Perfect Indicative of the direct discourse. Luke 22:34; John 12:29; Acts 14:19; 2 Tim.2:18. The Present Infinitive as the representative of the Imperfect, and the Perfect Infinitive as the representative of the Pluperfect (G.MT. 119,123) apparently do not occur in the New Testament. The Future Infinitive is, as stated above (99), an exception to the general rule of the timelessness of the dependent moods. It represents a Future Indicative of the direct form. John 21:25; Acts 23:30; Heb. 3:18.

113. The Aorist Infinitive occurs in the New Testament, as in classical Greek, as a regular construction after verbs signifying to hope, to promise, to swear, to command, etc. In this case the action denoted by the Aorist Infinitive is, by the nature of the case, future with reference to that of the principal verb, but this time-relation is not expressed by the tense.  The Aorist Infinitive is here as elsewhere timeless. These instances, though closely akin in force to those of indirect discourse, are not usually included under that head. Cf. G.MT. 684.

114. The Aorist Infinitive referring to what is future with reference to the principal verb also occurs in a few instances after verbs of assertion. These must be accounted cases in which the Aorist Infinitive in indirect discourse is timeless.

Luke 24:46; o[ti Ou[twj ge,graptai paqei/n to.n Cristo.n kai. avnasth/nai evk nekrw/n th/| tri,th| h`me,ra|, thus it is written, that the Christ should suffer, and rise again from the dead the third day. See also Luke 2:26; Acts 3:18. Cf. Hom. fhmi. teleuthqh/nai a[panta, the accomplishment being still future (Carter in Cl. Rev. Feb. 1891,  p. 5). Plat. Euthyd. 278, C. evfa,thn evpidei,xasqai th.n protreptikh.n sofi,an, they said that they would give a sample of the hortatory wisdom. Protag. 316, C. tou/to de. oi'etai, oi` ma.lista gene,sqai eiv soi. xugge/noito, and he supposes that he would be most likely to attain this if he should associate with you; and other examples in Riddell, Digest of Platonic Idioms, § 81; also in G.MT. 127.
There is apparently no instance in the New Testament of the Aorist Infinitive in indirect discourse representing the Aorist Indicative of the direct form. Cf. 390.