In Greek, as in English, there are different parts of speech: verbs, which are words that describe action; nouns, which name objects; and adjectives, which modify nouns. There are other parts of speech which we will discuss later. For now, we will focus on one particular type of verb.
When one talks about Greek verbs one must be very clear as to which kind of verb one is talking about. Greek verbs, you see, have "Tense", which describes both kind and time of action. They also have "Voice", which indicates whether the subject of the verb is acting (active voice) or being acted upon (passive voice). Greek verbs also have "Mood", which shows the verb's relation to reality. And finally, Greek verbs also have number (singular or plural). We will see many examples of aong; so do not worry now about whether or not you fully grasp these ideas. You will!!!!
The first kind of verb we will discuss is the one which occurs most often in the New Testament: Present, Active, Indicative. That is, the tense is present (describing action taking place now), the voice is active (meaning that the verb's subject is acting and not being acted upon), and the mood is indicative (which demonstrates true reality). Present, Active, Indicative verbs are translated by a present tense English verb. (See the examples below in the vocabulary).
Before we go any further, the following words will need to be memorized by the student for vocabulary. These words occur very frequently in the New Testament.
ginwskw = I know
grafw = I write
didaskw = I teach
e0geirw = I raise up, lift up
lambanw = I receive, take to myself
legw = I say, I speak
pempw = I send
ferw = I bear, I carry, I bring
ASSIGNMENT: Memorize these vocabulary words and learn to correctly pronounce them.
You will notice that each of these verbs ends with the letter w. And they are all translated by "I...." In Greek, the verb called the present, active, indicative, always ends with the following endings (called conjugations):
-w = I ...
-eij = you ...
-ei = he, she or it, depending on the context
-omen = we...
-ete = you
-ein = infinitive
Thus, to learn to recognize the Present, Active, Indicative, you simply need to recognize the verbal ending. You can take any of the verbs ending, add the endings above, and have the correct conjugation.
legw= I say
legeij= = You say
legei= He, she or it (depending on the contexts) says
legomen= We say
legete= You say
legousi= They say
legein= to say
ASSIGNMENT: Take each of the verbs from the vocabulary above and conjugate them, then translate them.
didask + w = I teach
didask + eij = you teach
didask + ei = he, she or it teaches
didask + omen = we teach
didask + ete = you teach
didask + ousi = they teach
didask + ein = to teach
Now, do the rest of the verbs for yourself (but don't include the + marker, it is simply there to show you how conjugation is done).
Copyright © Quartz Hill School of Theology. All Rights Reserved.