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Greek and Hebrew

Discussion in 'Christian Scriptures' started by Tom Farebrother, Nov 15, 2017.

  1. Tom Farebrother

    Tom Farebrother New Member Supporter

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    Hello,

    I´m thinking about investing some time in starting to learn to read either ancient Greek or Hebrew, would like to hear from anyone who has done this and what you gained from being able to read the texts in these languages,

    Thanks,

    Tom
     
  2. Radagast

    Radagast wonders what's going on around here

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    Greek would be more worthwhile than Hebrew. I learned New Testament Greek (which is not quite the same as the Greek of Plato). It certainly gave me a deeper understanding of the Bible, but it was a lot of work.
     
  3. MyGivenNameIsKeith

    MyGivenNameIsKeith Member

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    Though I haven't "learned" ancient Hebrew and Koine Greek, there are many resources I do in fact use, where I am starting to gain an elementary working knowledge of it for use in bible study. Mainly from reference though so I am no expert by any means. But, There are some really excellent things I've discovered that help to enrich the Word of God by seeing the multiple language aspect of some verses.

    For example in John 1:1 , in English we use the words "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God... "
    In Greek "In the beginning" is one word [arche] (Strong's 746)
    When you go back to Genesis 1, back to the Hebrew text, you see "In the beginning" is actually one word. [bereshit (Strong's 7225)]
    It is a single word in Hebrew and Greek both, but three in English. It's a way you can see the essence of the trinity nature of God through the actual Word. Kind of neat eh?
    And for the triune aspect of God, I would support this by showing that God made man in his own image. Man is made up of mind, body, and soul. So man's trinity reflects the creator's.
     
  4. Radagast

    Radagast wonders what's going on around here

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    Actually, two words (en archē):

    Ἐν (in) ἀρχῇ (the beginning) ἦν (was) (the) λόγος (Word).
     
  5. ViaCrucis

    ViaCrucis Evangelical Catholic of the Augsburg Confession

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    I'm hardly qualified in either, but in my personal experience Greek is certainly the easier of the two. Greek is an Indo-European language, and thus going to much closer to English (in my case) or Romanian (in your case) than Hebrew is to either. It uses an alphabetic writing system which isn't terribly difficult to learn, as opposed to Hebrew which uses an abjad, a consonant-only writing system, and for ease of reading requires also learning the niqqud or vowel marks invented by the Masoretes in the middle ages. I suspect learning Hebrew would be very valuable, but in some ways learning Koine (the kind of Greek in which the New Testament is written) would probably be more rewarding. One could ostensibly get the hang of Koine through a lot of personal study and good materials; to learn Hebrew would, I'd argue, probably demand several years of academic discipline. Now to really learn Koine that would also require academic study, but one could get some basics through personal study as well. Again, this is largely going by my personal experience as an untrained layman.

    -CryptoLutheran
     
  6. ViaCrucis

    ViaCrucis Evangelical Catholic of the Augsburg Confession

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    CF still has a conspiracy theory board does it not? Instead of spamming this and bothering the rest of us with this, take your conspiracy theories to the proper board.

    Conspiracy Theories

    -CryptoLutheran
     
  7. Hank77

    Hank77 Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I don't have the patience to learn a new language now but I do used Strong's Concordance and Thayer's Lexicon. Both are a great help in giving more depth to the scriptures. So I think learning the languages would be very helpful.

    But.....if I were young my practical side would say go with the Greek first, my spiritual side says Hebrew. Not much help there.
     
  8. MyGivenNameIsKeith

    MyGivenNameIsKeith Member

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    apologies, the resource I had used for that reference was the NASB which uses all 3. Other versions vary. KJV uses "the beginning" (2 words), which I actually use frequently but overlooked by mistake due to the resource that was at hand.
    It is noteworthy to show that arche in the Helps word studies is the first, 746 arxḗ – properly, from the beginning (temporal sense), i.e. "the initial (starting) point"; (figuratively) what comes first and therefore is chief (foremost), i.e. has the priority because ahead of the rest ("preeminent").
    it is also plural in definition (b) here ===
    Strong's Concordance
    arché: beginning, origin
    Original Word: ἀρχή, ῆς, ἡ
    Part of Speech: Noun, Feminine
    Transliteration: arché
    Phonetic Spelling: (ar-khay')
    Short Definition: ruler, beginning
    Definition: (a) rule (kingly or magisterial), (b) plur: in a quasi-personal sense, almost: rulers, magistrates, (c) beginning.
    Here I am implying that "in the beginning" and "the beginning" could both be used because it is through Christ that all was done, and was showing that it was so linguistically. I won't really argue or debate it though as its all the same to me, but thanks for pointing it out to make it look like he didn't fit the bill.
     
  9. DeaconDean

    DeaconDean γέγονα χαλκὸς, κύμβαλον ἀλαλάζον

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    I will tell you this;

    After 2 semesters of Greek, it is very heavy in grammar. Much like English.

    God Bless

    Till all are one.
     
  10. Radagast

    Radagast wonders what's going on around here

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    What are you talking about? Every translation I've checked, including the NASB and KJV, have "In the beginning."

    Playing with those tools when you don't understand the grammar can be very deceptive.
     
    Last edited: Nov 15, 2017
  11. Radagast

    Radagast wonders what's going on around here

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    Very heavy. Most of the complexity of NT Greek is the grammar, in fact.

    Not the vocab: if you only want to read the NT, there are only about 5,000 words to learn (and only about 1,000 words used ten or more times). And many of those words you already know, you just don't realise that you know them. For example τραῦμα (trauma) is a wound, καρδία (kardia) is a heart, ἀπόστολος (apostolos) is an apostle.

    But the grammatical rules define 8 or so different endings for each noun, and almost 300 for each verb, and that's where the complexity is. It's worth the effort, though, because that's how you understand the details of what the NT says.
     
    Last edited: Nov 15, 2017
  12. DeaconDean

    DeaconDean γέγονα χαλκὸς, κύμβαλον ἀλαλάζον

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    I agree.

    And throw in learning to "parse" nouns!

    :doh:

    Throw in "Demonstratives, ode, outos, ekeivos:

    That totals 54 ways just those can be parsed.

    Then throw in are you taught 5 Greek cases or 7?

    My handbook for seminary was the old "New Testament Greek for Beginners, By: G. Gresham Machem". 1923 edition.

    But you know what? It was worth it. I don't regret it.

    God Bless

    Till all are one.
     
  13. Radagast

    Radagast wonders what's going on around here

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    Indeed. Neither do I.

    ἀναγινώσκων χαίρω.
     
  14. DeaconDean

    DeaconDean γέγονα χαλκὸς, κύμβαλον ἀλαλάζον

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    See whats under my icon?

    God Bless

    Till all are one.
     
  15. Radagast

    Radagast wonders what's going on around here

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    I see it. I've often wondered what you meant by it.
     
  16. rockytopva

    rockytopva Love to pray! :) Supporter

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    The Blue Letter Bible is a great study source. I would begin there.

    Genesis 1:1 (KJV)

    If you click 'Tools' and then 'Strongs' you will get the Hebrew or Greek definition of the word.
     
  17. DeaconDean

    DeaconDean γέγονα χαλκὸς, κύμβαλον ἀλαλάζον

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    "tinkling symbol, sounding brass". (1 Cor. 13:1)

    To a great many here on the forums, that is what they think of me.

    :)

    God Bless

    Till all are one.
     
  18. Radagast

    Radagast wonders what's going on around here

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    Oh, I recognized the quote. I'm sure it's not appropriate.
     
  19. DeaconDean

    DeaconDean γέγονα χαλκὸς, κύμβαλον ἀλαλάζον

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    Eh...it's just a tongue in cheek thing.

    God Bless

    Till all are one.
     
  20. rockytopva

    rockytopva Love to pray! :) Supporter

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    I believe that

    ἀναγινώσκων χαίρω
    OR ... anaginóskon chaíro

    is translated...

    I am happy (very similar to the Greek Charis (Grace), Eucharistea (Gratitude), chara (Joy))
     
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