For me one of the highlights of SBL 2013 was the “Perfect Storm” session featuring Stan Porter, Con Campbell, and Buist Fanning. It was a discussion about the nature of the biblical Greek’s perfect tense-form in relation to verbal aspect. It was a cracker of a discussion! I’m friends with both Stan and Con so I felt a little torn in deciding who got the better of the debate.
In a nutshell, Fanning argued for something close to the traditional view, that is, the perfect is a past event with an on-going significance. Porter argued that the perfect is aspectivally stative and highlights the state of an action (my default view I have to say). Campbell questioned whether stativity can properly be thought of as a type of aspect when stativity might more properly belong to aktionsart, instead arguing that the perfect tense conveys imperfective aspect (i.e., the present tense on steroids).
If you want to know what all the fuss is about and what difference it makes exegetically, then please read Ben Reynolds and Madison Pierce, “The Perfect Tense-Form and the Son of Man in John 3.13: Developments in Greek Grammar as a Viable Solution to the Timng of the Ascent and Descent,” NTS 60.1 (2014): 149-55.