John Brainard wrote:In John 1:5 φαινει is present tense therefore it seems to include a present idea. Also κατελαβεν seems to suggest a present apprehension or understanding from a present revelation.
I am not sure that I agree with John Milton's position on this.
Is φαινει a timeless present? I do not think so. I believes that there is a close association between verse 5 and verse9-10.
To note, Barnes says that κατελαβεν in v. 5 should not be translated with the sense of "understand, comprehend" because it is not in the middle voice. Rather, it has a sense similar to its other Johannine usage in John 12:35, thus meaning "darkness did not overcome the light and eclipse it."