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Discussion in 'General Baptist Discussions' started by Plain Old Bill, Apr 17, 2008.
I need help selecting textbooks for learning Hebrew. Any advice ?
I recommend checking out Allen Ross's Introducing Biblical Hebrew. It is more concerned with understanding how the language works rather than rote memory and charts (but charts are in the back of the book). If you work through it all, then it will cover both beginning and intermediate Hebrew.
The vocabulary is a little off since words come up much later in the book, but purchasing Zondervan's flash cards can help supplement your vocabulary knowledge.
I'l admit that this is biased because it's the one I used to learn the language. I'm sure others will chime in for their favorites.
I used Biblical Hebrew: An Introductory Grammar by Page H. Kelley in seminary, but honestly I wasn't too impressed with it and I am sure you can do better.
I would not try to learn Hebrew by myself, if I were you. I had a dear friend who took a year in a Bible College and then had to go it by himself for Hebrew reading. He found the Jewish Education Society in his city and paid a tutor. This was years ago and the cost was very reasonable. You might try that. Or, in your area you should be able to find a college, university, or seminary of some stripe where you could take the courses.
I would highly recommend the grammar that is coming out soon by Cambridge - I think the name will be "Cambridge introduction to biblical hebrew" or something like that. Written by Brian Webster.
It is high quality.
He has even written a computer program that will come with the book. It's a flash program that walks you through examples and give you a lot of practice examples. It also has cool illustrations of the different principles. The program is far better than any other hebrew program out there.
And it comes with a workbook in pdf format. And I believe he's including the answer key as well.
It's great. It's not a lot of unnecessary memorization. He teaches you the underlying principles and how to put them together.
It is by far the best book that is out there. (Even though it hasn't quite been published yet -- but it should be out within the next couple of months.)
IMO, Hebrew is much more fun that Greek
but the learning curve is rather steep in the begining;
with Greek the difficulties occur later on.
I've tried a number of different books, none of them are outstanding but some are better than others.
Kelley's book is good but probably works better in a classroom setting.
Someday I plan to take a night couse in Hebrew at the nearby Philadelphia Biblical Institute.
Until then I use:
The First Hebrew Primer : The Adult Beginner's Path to Biblical Hebrew [LINK]
The First Hebrew Primer : Answer Book [LINK]
by Ethelyn Simon, Irene Resnikoff and Linda Motzkin
The product is even better when used in the Libronix system because it includes an audio companion [LINK].
They have a number of followup books and studies as well.