Learning Biblical Greek?

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  • Learning Biblical Greek?

    Something that I have wished to do for some time is to learn Biblical (Koine) Greek. Several people, including a pastor, have told me that it brings the Word into even better understanding. I have a book that is for self-study and a copy of the Greek New Testament (Novum Testamentum Graece), but, alas, time has prevented me from deep study. I think I can make progress with this with study when time allows as I am familiar with other languages: I'm bilingual (English and German) and have some knowledge of Spanish due to my work life and location. However, Greek is perhaps a greater challenge.

    For those that have studied or mastered the language: how did you do so? Was it a formal class in advanced education, self-study, or both? Has it enriched your study of the Word? Any other tips you'd like to share?

    Thank you brothers and sisters. :)

  • #2
    I leaned Greek, Hebrew, and Aramaic in college. First year Greek was basic grammar. In my second and third year all the courses were reading classes. Simply knowing the basic grammar is not enough. As a novice I have two pieces of advice for you.

    (1) Vocabulary, vocabulary, vocabulary.

    (2) Learn the forms of the words. Know them inside and out.

    Greek is an inflected language and uses case endings.

    For example take the verb λύω (I loose). The stem of the verb is λυ. The endings (everything after the dash below) are verb endings. They tell us the voice, mood, tense, number, and person.


    λύ-ω The ω ending tells me this is a first person, singular, present, active, indicative verb.

    λύ-εις The εις ending tells me this is a second person, singular, present, active, indicative verb.

    λύ-ει The ει ending tells me this is a third person, singular, present, active, indicative verb.

    λύ-ομεν The ομεν ending tells me this is a first person, plural, present, active, indicative verb.

    λύ-ετε The ετε ending tells me this is a second person, plural, present, active, indicative verb.

    λύ-ουσιν The ουσιν ending tells me this is a third person, plural, present, active, indicative verb.

    This is the first conjugation you learn and it is only the start. There are many more conjugations.
    Comment>

    • #3
      Thanks Origen :)
      Simul Justus et Peccator ~Martin Luther

      "We are justified by faith alone, but the faith that justifies is never alone" ~John Calvin

      "The Christian does not think God will love us because we are good, but that God will make us good because He loves us." ~C. S. Lewis

      "The secret is Christ in me, not me in a different set of circumstances" ~Elisabeth Elliot

      "The law is for the self-righteous to humble their pride; the Gospel is for the lost to remove their despair. ~C. H. Spurgeon
      Comment>

      • #4
        Originally posted by Nahum View Post
        Something that I have wished to do for some time is to learn Biblical (Koine) Greek. Several people, including a pastor, have told me that it brings the Word into even better understanding. I have a book that is for self-study and a copy of the Greek New Testament (Novum Testamentum Graece), but, alas, time has prevented me from deep study. I think I can make progress with this with study when time allows as I am familiar with other languages: I'm bilingual (English and German) and have some knowledge of Spanish due to my work life and location. However, Greek is perhaps a greater challenge.

        For those that have studied or mastered the language: how did you do so? Was it a formal class in advanced education, self-study, or both? Has it enriched your study of the Word? Any other tips you'd like to share?

        Thank you brothers and sisters. :)
        I recommend Wallace for beginners with Greek grammar.
        See also Greek Grammar Links
        Comment>

        • #5
          Originally posted by bcbsr View Post
          Wallace is an excellent grammar but it is not for the novice. It is not a beginners lever grammar and is not very helpful for learning Greek. That why it is titled "Greek Grammar Beyond the Basics." It assumes that the reader has a basic knowledge of Greek grammar, syntax, morphology, and vocabulary. A much better grammar for someone who wants to have a working knowledge of Greek (without leaning the language) is Greek for the Rest of Us (William D. Mounce: Zondervan, 2003).
          Last edited by Origen; 06-12-2016, 10:56 AM.
          Comment>

          • #6
            Thank you all for the thoughts and resources. They are much appreciated. On that topic, are there any online courses that are recommended? Any to avoid? Thank you.

            P.S. I think Moody's might have a Greek course that can be studied by distance learning. I'll check it out, but if anyone has first hand experience, I would value the info. Thanks again.
            Comment>

            • #7
              Originally posted by Nahum View Post
              Thank you all for the thoughts and resources. They are much appreciated. On that topic, are there any online courses that are recommended? Any to avoid? Thank you.
              Bill Mounce
              P.S. I think Moody's might have a Greek course that can be studied by distance learning. I'll check it out, but if anyone has first hand experience, I would value the info. Thanks again.
              Try Bill Mounce.

              Bill Mounce - YouTube

              Home | billmounce.com

              Or better yet try Dr. Michael H. Heiser.

              MEMRA Courses

              This is an online course and reasonably priced. Heiser KNOWS the languages.
              Comment>

              • #8
                Thank you Origen. I will check that out. Much appreciated. :)
                Comment>
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