Biblical Greek - Lesson 20

Verbal Roots and Other Forms of the Future

In this lesson, you will gain a deeper understanding of verbal roots and future forms in Biblical Greek. You will learn the importance of identifying verbal roots and how to find them in both regular and irregular verbs. Additionally, you will explore the different forms of the future tense, including the formation, usage, and conjugation patterns of regular future forms, as well as the unique patterns found in irregular future forms. By mastering these concepts, you will strengthen your foundation in Biblical Greek and be better equipped to interpret the New Testament.

Bill Mounce
Biblical Greek
Lesson 20
Watching Now
Verbal Roots and Other Forms of the Future

I. Introduction to Verbal Roots and Future Forms

A. Importance of Understanding Verbal Roots

B. Future Forms in Biblical Greek

II. Identifying Verbal Roots

A. Regular Verbs

1. Finding the Root

2. Patterns in Verbal Roots

B. Irregular Verbs

1. Common Irregular Verbs

2. Recognizing Irregular Patterns

III. Forms of the Future Tense

A. Regular Future Forms

1. Formation and Usage

2. Conjugation Patterns

B. Irregular Future Forms

1. Unique Conjugation Patterns

2. Identifying Irregular Future Forms

  • Bill Mounce invites you to join this course on Biblical Greek and learn the language that he believes is not as hard as people make it out to be, and assures that his lectures will hit just the high points of Greek and that there are resources available on his website for deeper understanding.
  • You will gain knowledge and insight into the fundamentals of biblical Greek, including the alphabet and pronunciation, nouns and adjectives, pronouns and verbs, and the importance of further study. You will learn about the declension of nouns and the conjugation of verbs in different tenses, such as the present, imperfect, future, and aorist. This lesson provides a comprehensive overview of the basics of biblical Greek, making it accessible to beginners who are just starting to learn.
  • In the Learning Greek lesson, you will tackle memorization, learn about tools to assist you, understand the importance of exercises, and discover the significance of time, consistency, and discipline to enhance your Greek language skills and develop a closer connection with Jesus.
  • In this lesson, you learn the Greek alphabet and its pronunciation, discovering similarities to the English alphabet and mastering special pronunciation rules like gamma nasal, vowels, diphthongs, iota subscript, diuresis, and breathing marks, crucial for Greek language study.
  • You will gain insight into the importance of punctuation and syllabification in Greek, which will help you better understand the meaning and pronunciation of Greek texts.
  • Through this lesson, you will develop a solid foundation in English nouns, their types, functions in sentences, and practical tips for mastery.
  • In this lesson, you grasp the significance of nominative and accusative definite articles in Biblical Greek, exploring their roles in identifying subjects and direct objects, and applying the definite article in context.
  • This lesson equips you with the knowledge to identify and translate the genitive and dative cases in biblical Greek, enhancing your understanding and interpretation of biblical texts.
  • Gain insight into the importance of prepositions in Biblical Greek, explore their different categories and meanings, and learn how they modify verbs, nouns, and adjectives to enhance your understanding of the New Testament's original language.
  • In this lesson, you will learn about adjectives in Biblical Greek, their declension, comparison, and their crucial role in syntax, semantics, interpretation, and translation of Biblical texts.
  • By studying the third declension in Biblical Greek, you gain insight into noun and adjective formations, enhancing your ability to analyze and interpret New Testament texts.
  • You gain knowledge of first and second person personal pronouns in Biblical Greek, learning their forms, usage, and application in translating and interpreting New Testament texts.
  • You will gain a comprehensive understanding of Greek pronouns, focusing on forms and genders, and learn to apply this knowledge to accurately interpret biblical texts.
  • By studying this lesson, you acquire a thorough understanding of demonstrative pronouns and adjectives in Biblical Greek, their forms, syntax, and proper application in New Testament passages.
  • This lesson equips you to comprehend relative pronouns in Biblical Greek and their role in connecting ideas and forming dependent clauses.
  • In this lesson, you gain an in-depth understanding of verbs in Biblical Greek, learning about tenses, voices, and moods, and how to apply this knowledge in biblical exegesis.
  • Master the present active indicative in Biblical Greek to understand the language's structure, form regular and irregular verbs, and accurately translate and interpret the text.
  • In this lesson, you gain insight into contract verbs in Biblical Greek, learning to identify and parse them, enabling accurate translation and interpretation of the New Testament texts.
  • This lesson provides a deep understanding of the present middle-passive indicative verb forms in Biblical Greek, including their formation, usage, and tips for accurate translation.
  • This lesson provides you with a comprehensive understanding of the future active and middle indicative verb forms in Biblical Greek, equipping you with translation techniques and practice exercises to enhance your skillset.
  • Through this lesson, you acquire knowledge of verbal roots and future forms in Biblical Greek, enabling better interpretation of the New Testament by recognizing regular and irregular patterns.
  • This lesson teaches you how to understand and use the imperfect indicative in biblical Greek, offering insights into verb conjugations, context, and translation accuracy.
  • You will gain expertise in Second Aorist Active and Middle Indicative forms in Biblical Greek, their formation, usage, and importance in biblical interpretation.
  • This lesson equips you with knowledge of the First Aorist Active and Middle Indicative in Biblical Greek, covering formation, parsing, and translation techniques while providing examples from the New Testament.
  • By studying this lesson, you learn to identify and translate Aorist and Future Passive Indicative verb forms in Biblical Greek, enabling accurate exegesis and interpretation of the New Testament.
  • In this lesson, you acquire knowledge on forming, conjugating, and translating perfect indicative verbs in biblical Greek, with a focus on understanding context and handling irregular verb forms.
  • Through this lesson, you learn about Greek participles, their types, and translation techniques, enhancing your ability to analyze and understand the New Testament texts.
  • This lesson teaches you to identify, translate, and interpret present continuous adverbial participles in Biblical Greek, enhancing your understanding of New Testament exegesis.
  • Gain insights into aorist undefined adverbial participles, their types, and translation techniques to improve your understanding of the Greek text and biblical exegesis.
  • Through this lesson, you master the intricacies of adjectival participles in biblical Greek, including their forms, translation, and syntax, ultimately enhancing your ability to analyze and translate biblical texts.
  • This lesson teaches you the intricacies of perfect participles and genitive absolutes in biblical Greek, enabling you to accurately translate and understand complex grammatical structures.
  • Gain insight into the subjunctive mood in Biblical Greek, understanding its formation, functions, and importance for interpreting the New Testament's nuanced meanings.
  • Through this lesson, you learn to recognize and understand the various roles and functions of infinitives in Biblical Greek, ultimately enhancing your ability to study the biblical text.
  • In this lesson, you learn about the imperative mood in Biblical Greek, its forms and uses, negation, and the subjunctive as an alternative for expressing commands and requests.
  • In this lesson, you learn to understand and apply the imperative mood in Biblical Greek, including its formation, nuances, and its use in exegesis.
  • In this lesson, you gain a deeper understanding of non-indicative forms and conditional sentences, learning to differentiate between subjunctive, imperative, infinitive, and participle forms, as well as first, second, and third class conditional sentences, while expanding your vocabulary.
  • Gain insights into Biblical Greek constructs, conditional sentences, Greek particles, and techniques for parsing and translating complex passages, enhancing your ability to interpret the New Testament.

These lectures will take you through the main points of each chapter in Bill Mounce's Basics of Biblical Greek (3rd edition). These Summary Lectures are also available at billmounce.com, along with other free resources for learning biblical Greek. [The first lecture was originally given in the course Dr. Mounce was teaching at Gordon-Conwell seminary. The syllabus he mentions was for that group of students and is not available.]


BillMounce.com also sells video lectures by Bill Mounce that cover every point in the grammar.

Recommended Books

Basics of Biblical Greek Grammar 3rd (third) Edition

Basics of Biblical Greek Grammar 3rd (third) Edition

William D. Mounce's "Basics of Biblical Greek Grammar" and its companion tool "Basics of Biblical Greek Workbook" are the best-selling and most widely accepted textbooks for learning New Testament Greek.
Basics of Biblical Greek Grammar 3rd (third) Edition

Dr. Bill Mounce
Biblical Greek
Verbal Roots and Other Forms of the Future
Lesson Transcript

[00:00:01] Well, good morning. Today, we're on chapter 20. And if there's any two words that I want you to remember this morning, there are the words root and stem. Okay. Let me show you what I mean. We have the word a cool. And when we go into the future, we have a clue. So. Okay. Absolutely. Regular. No problems there at all. You have the basic word, Aku. You add the sigma, the transformative and the personal ending, and you get aku. So. Okay. No big deal. But the important thing is that you have the same stem in both the present and the future. These are the kind of words we looked at in chapter 19. So you have aku. Oh, and aku. So, okay, what about a word like bar low with double lambdas? In the future, you have Barlow. Now, just for a moment, ignore the fact that there's no sigma. That's another issue we'll look at in a little bit. But what's the other change that happened here? Right. You've gone from a double lambda to a single lambda. You know, this is an example of what Chapter 20 is all about. There's lots of changes like this in the Greek verbal system, from a double consonant to a single consonant. Different kinds of changes to the basic form of the verb as we move through the different tenses. And the question is, do you want to just memorize all these different forms? Or would you rather learn a couple of rules, learn a couple of patterns and be able to identify them? Well, obviously by now, you know, the my approach is the latter. The fact of the matter is that the most basic form of a verb is not its present tense stem.

[00:01:59] The most basic form of a verb is its root. But that distinction is critical. For example, in our school you see the form to the left with the asterisks. I always put an asterisks before a root. The root of a school is a coup, and the root comes into the present tense and into the future tense without any change. But look at Barlow. The root of Barlow. Its most basic form is Bol, with a single lambda. For some reason, when Greeks formed, the present tense stem from the root, they doubled the lambda. And if you think that the present tense stem is the most basic, then when you get to these other forms, like in the future, you're going to have to memorize it as an irregularity. Well, that's not what we're going to do here. What we're going to do is look at the root. The most basic form of the verb has a single lambda, and when they use the root to form the present tense stem, it was doubled. But guess what? When you form the other tense stems with ball, it doesn't double. It's really easy to think that the present tense stem is the most basic because that's the first one we learned. But that's not the case. I'm going slowly here at first because I really want the basic message of roots and stems to come through. The root is the most basic form of a word, and in fact, the root can come up in nouns and in adjectives as well as verbs. The stem is what that route looks like in a particular tense. So you have the root ball with a single lambda when you go into the present is doubled. Barlow But when you go into the future, it's below a single lambda.

[00:03:59] And when you go into one of the past tenses, which we haven't learned yet, but it's Abilene again with a single lambda. So all that to say the root is the most basic form of the word, and then it's from the root that the different tense dams are formed. And what we're going to learn is that in the formation of the present tense stem will see the most change. In other words, in the other tenses, the root isn't changed as much as it is in the present tense. At a practical level, what that means is that when we memorize the verb, we will also always memorize its root. Barlow means I throw. It occurs 122 times in the New Testament. It's from the root ball, and then in the future it's Barlow. There are three basic patterns in terms of how the root moves into the present tense stem, and we're going to categorize verbs based on this fact. Sometimes the root is a modified at all. In other words, like a cool. You look at the present tense stem and you're going to see the root coup. But there's another group of verbs that modify the root regularly in the formation of the present tense stem. And again, these don't have to be memorized because you're going to learn the patterns and you'll be able to identify the inflected forms when you see them. But there is a third category where a verb actually uses different roots all together in the formation of the different tense stems. And there's not many of those, but they occur a whole lot. So those will have to be memorized. Okay, Those are your three basic patterns. Okay, let's break those three patterns down. The first pattern is the pattern where the verbal root comes into the present tense stem without change.

[00:05:55] And these are actually the verbs that we learned in chapter 19. And so, for example, we have roots that ended in the yoga or a new salon, like a cool where the root appears the same in both the present and the future. We saw contracts where the root appears in the present and in the future. The only difference being the contract vowel is lengthened before the tense formative in the future. But there's been no change in the root at all, is there? And then there's words that end in a stop words like blackball. And when the final consonant meets up with the sigma, the tense, formative, regular things happen. Those are all three different categories in Pattern one, and we met them in chapter 19. Now there is one more category called liquids. But we'll learn that at the end of this chapter. Okay. What are. Out pattern two verbal routes that are modified regularly in the formation of the present tense. Well, there's three subcategories for this. There are some stems that end in a stop. Now, these are different than what we saw in pattern one, because there's other things going on as well. But they're words that end in a stop. Take, for example, and again, you don't have to memorize these right now. I just want you to see how the pattern works. Take a route like Bob did. Ends in a dental. These routes that end in a dental in the formation of the present tense stem are changed to Zeta's. And so you have Bob did. But once you get out of the present tense system, for example into the future, the future is not being formed of the present tense stem. It's being formed off the root. So you had the root, Bob did.

[00:07:49] Then you had the sigma tense, formative. What happens to a dental before a sigma? All right. It drops out. And so the future is Baptist. So now some people may look at Baptists and go, Oh, it's irregular. There's no data. I have to memorize this. No, you don't. What you do is you memorize of the root of Bob. Ted. So is Bob Ted ending in a delta. And from that point on, it's perfectly regular. And guess what? When you get into the other tenses, they are going to be formed off of the root that ends in a dental. And they're all regular as well. What if the stem ends in a velar like t-roc with a he? Well, what happened with this word again? In the formation of the present tense stem, the root was altered and you ended up with a double sigma. But when you go to the other tenses, you're interacting with the root, not the present tense stem and everything is regular. And so the future of Tara is to rock. So. So again, let me let me remind us what we're doing here. This kind of thing happens all over the place in the Greek verbal system. You can either memorize all these tense forms or you can learn a couple of rules. The rule here is that stems in IDs or odds. All are really stems in a dental. If you know that, then you've saved yourself hundreds of forms that you don't have to memorize. And when you see baptism, it's absolutely regular. No big deal. See what's going on. Okay. What about the next category in pattern two called double consonants? These are words that in the present tense, stem end in a double consonant. And again, BOLO is the best example in these kinds of words.

[00:09:37] What's actually going on is that the root has a single consonant. That single consonant was doubled in the formation of the present tense stem, but it's not doubled in the other tenses. And so, for example, in the future you have Barlow with a single lambda. Again, I'll talk in a bit about why there's no sigma, but that's something else. So Barlow kind of words are another example of pattern two. Now the third category in Pattern two are words that have added a letter to the root in the formation of the present tense stem. And obviously when you get into the other ten stems, that added letter will not be present, but rather those other ten stems like the future will be formed from the root. So we have a word I Rule Alpha, Ian, Row Omega. The future is a row. You go. Oh, it lost the other. No, the root of I rule is are Alpha Rho. The order was added to form the present tense stem, but the other ten stems are formed from the root alpha row and don't have the aura. See how this is working? Another collection of letters that can be added is ISK. So for example, you have the root up of thorn and then you add isk and a few other things happened in order to form the present tense stem and you get up of the nice skull. So the alpha, the stem dropped out in the Yoda's under the year to other things happening. But look what happens in the future. Apple saw new my so future deponent. Now if you memorize that apple funny skull is the most basic form of the word. You get to apple Sonoma. You go, Oh man. Well, I just got to memorize this.

[00:11:27] No, all that you have to memorize is that the root of apple? The nose goes up of thorn, and when you get into the future, the only thing you have to remember is that it's a middle deponent hook. You know, I can see the look in your eyes. Don't glaze over on me yet. All right? Don't. Don't kind of fade away. This is quite a bit of theory. I understand that. But in a sense. It's not really that much theory. The theory is that the root is the basic form of the word. The root may or may not be modified in the formation of the present tense term. But there are certain patterns, and if we can get used to the patterns, then we're going to be able to parse these words easily without memorizing hundreds of tense forms. The third pattern and the last pattern are those verbs that actually have totally different roots. For example, there's the word hora, or it means, See, it's from the root hora. No big deal. When you get to the future, it's a middle deponent and it's up. So my head you go, How did you go from hero to ops to me? Well, you didn't in a sense. There's a totally different route behind the future, and the route is up. In other words, in a sense, it's like Hero lost its future form and up Apple. I'm not sure what it would have been in the present, but anyway, that Root lost its present form. The kind of this is a simplification, but they kind of got together. And so you have this verb that says, Well, hey, I'm going to use horror for the present, but I'll use up in the future. Like I said, there's very few of these words, but they're very frequent and you just have to memorize them.

[00:13:14] Okay. Those are the three patterns of how a route moves into the different tenses. And in Section 12, in the book, I list all the verbs that you've learned so far, and I list them in the route and in the present tense them. And in the future. I would really encourage you to spend time with that chart and just walk through and get accustomed to the patterns. Learn to see the patterns. Because once you learn the patterns, you're going to, you won't have anything else to learn when you find other words that follow the same pattern. Again, that's the whole idea. Okay. All right. One more thing. We need to learn about the futures, and then we're done with the futures. And it's something called a liquid future. If in the future, the stem ends in a lambda mu nu or role. Those are considered the four liquids. They're going to form their future tense a little differently. And the difference is that doesn't use the sigma as the tense formative. It uses Epsilon Sigma as a tense formative, but then you have Epsilon Sigma and the connecting vowel. You have what's called an inter volcanic sigma and sigma between vowels don't hang around in Greek, they drop out. You've got two vowels up against each other and they contract. So these are those verbs that in the future don't have a sigma. For example, one of the liquids is menthol. You take the root men, you add Epsilon Sigma. Connecting vowel. Primary active personal endings. The sigma drops out the epsilon micron contract to OU and you have Manoogian. Manoogian is the first person plural future active indicative of Menno. Okay. There's not really that much here. It's just a little bit of memory work and knowing the different tenths formative.

[00:15:23] But here's a chart. So for example, here's the present of Menno. Menno. Many, many men, women, men are two men who see, here's what it looks like in the future with the contractions. Minnow Mayonnaise Mini Men. Newman Mineta Menu. See now, in case the future of Menno looks kind of familiar, compare it to a present contract like Poya or what do you have? Well, you have the same endings, don't you? It looks the same poi all ployees poi. A ployment point to point. Okay, so you have the present of liquids, the future of liquids, and then you have the present of epsilon contracts kind of hanging around to trying to confuse you. Okay. How are you going to remember that in the know is a future of a liquid? Well, there's a couple of things. One is just your straight memory work. You know that mono can't be a present active epsilon contract because you have to memorize the verb minute or you've memorized it. Menno. In other words, there is no epsilon contract that in the present can go to mean no. So memory work helps. Secondly, you look and you see a liquid before the Omega. That helps you understand also that this is a future liquid. And although you can't see it with men though, sometimes when you have liquid futures, there's been a stem change as well. Again, just go back to Barlow. Barlow is the liquid, the root is bald. And so in the future it's Barlow. Now, you're not going to confuse Barlow with a double lambda and Barlow with a single lambda, are you? I mean, the change in the stem, so to speak, will alert you to the fact that Barlow can't be a present. Something I learned quite a while ago has come back to help me quite a bit.

[00:17:30] And that is I remember someone telling me, Concentrate on the consonants. Kind of like where in Hebrew. Vowels can change much more than consonants can change. And if you're struggling a bit, make sure that in your memory work, you're really concentrating on the consonants. That Barlow has a beta and two lambdas. So if you can get that into your mind, then when you see a beta and a single lambda, you know you're not in the present tense system. So concentrate on those consonants. Okay. Finally, one more line here in the master verb chart. How do you form a liquid future Active. You start with the future active tense stem. You had a tense formative Epsilon Sigma, and you understand the contractions that are going to occur when you're connected to the connecting vowel. And then you use primary active endings. And so, for example, you get Menno say this one last time. We did quite a bit of theory this morning, but the theory is here so that you won't go off and memorize hundreds of forms. So the real challenge when you get out of first year of Greek class is to keep using all that you've learned. And the greatest impediment that I have seen for people using Greek and we all know of pastors who, because of the demands of the pastorate, have not been able to review the Greek and hence have forgotten it and can't use it. So the real problem is memory work. Now, some of you may have these incredible minds that never forget anything. You're the lucky ones. For most of us, if we're going to memorize a lot of things, then we have to review them over and over and over again. But life in general fights against that kind of review.

[00:19:23] I mean, I even know Greek teachers that before they start the semester, have to go back and re memorize all the paradigms because they just don't stick in their minds. Again, there are some exceptions, but that's the majority of people. So what I want to do is to reduce the amount of memory work. The most effective way to do that is to help you see the rules and the patterns. And that way, when you get out of school and you get into real life, especially the pastorate where it's just the pace is hectic, then you won't have to keep reviewing, but you will still be able to identify Menno as the future. All right.