Greek verb tense


How this view is expressed

John Coblentz writes: "The Greek verb tense translated "committeth adultery" in Mark 10:11, 12 is present indicative, suggesting continuous action. It means "is committing adultery." The adultery is not in the past only. It began when the second relationship began and continues as long as the relationship continues -- the remarriage is ongoing adultery against the former companion as long as that companion lives. Again, this was not so under Moses, but it is so under the teachings of Jesus."

I spent a little bit of time discussing the divorce and remarriage issue with John some years back. He gave me the above as "proof" that the adultery is continuous. But I have several problems with this argument:

1) I wonder about the value of going to the Greek to look up root meanings and tenses. If the English text (in whatever translation you are using) is so unclear that you can't discern the meaning from that (with the Holy Spirit's help) then at least acknowledge that God did not choose to make this doctrine real clear. Also, if you tried to analyze an English message (like these web pages) by looking up the root meanings of the English words I think you could easily distort the real message or come to the wrong conclusion.

2) It is generally acknowledged that Luke contains the most accurate, technical Greek. In the parallel passage in that book if you look the word up in Strongs, you will find that the same word is also used in the passage about the woman who was caught in the ACT of adultery.


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