Opinions needed on some original language books

Discussion in 'Books / Publications Forum' started by Harald, Jan 11, 2002.

  1. Harald

    Harald
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    Hi. I would like to hear the opinion of some who is/are familiar with the following books.

    William Holladay: A CONCISE HEBREW AND ARAMAIC LEXICON OF THE OLD TESTAMENT

    Mounce, William D.: BASIC OF BIBLICAL GREEK

    Mounce, William D.: A Graded Reader of Biblical Greek

    I have been thinking on adding a few more books to my library, especially some touching upon the original languages. Are the above books worthwhile. I have a vague feeling they might suit the purpose, but wanted to hear if someone could say a few words on their strengths and weaknesses. I should add that I have not taken any courses in Greek, but have only read a bit on my own from Chamberlain's Exegetical Grammar as well as from some internet online courses. Thanks beforehand.

    Harald
     
  2. Siegfried

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    I've used Mounce's Basics book a lot. It's what I cut my teeth on, and it's an excellent intro.

    If you're looking for something that will help with exegesis, Daniel Wallace's Greek Grammar Beyond the Basics (I think that's the correct title) is the best I've come across. It gets into all the different case and tense usages, rules like Granville-Sharp, participles, etc.

    Wallace uses lots of NT examples for illustration, and he's very fair with debated passages.
     
  3. Pete Richert

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    If original languages is your goal, I don't think there is a better way for you to spend your money then Basics of Biblical Greek. If you could have one Greek book, I would go with this. It will get you a solid foundation into the languge so that you will be able to understand commentaries that deal with the text, be able to go out in different directions such as interlinears, Wallace's Greek Grammer Beyond the Basics, Vocab study, you name it. His graded reader is also good for practice and he guides you along in some exergesis of your own. I recommend the entire Zondervan series (Basics of Biblical Greek, Morphology of Biblical Greek, Greek Grammer Beyond the Basics, the Study Vocabulary Guide, and the Graded Reader.) I am beginning Basics of Biblical Hebrew, and I must admit that I don't esteem it so highly, but I'll have to get back to you on that one.

    P.S. Make sure you get the Basics of Biblical Greek workbook for practice. It has your reading and translating Greek from day one.
     
  4. Dr. Bob

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    George Rickers-Berry has a great interlinear Greek/English NT. KJV in side columns, critical text notes at bottom of every page, 1555 St Stephens Greek (for-runner of TR).

    Includes a lexicon (dictionary) and section on synonyms.

    Less than $20 in paperback. It is a GREAT tool for the beginner and for the pastor who never had Greek but wants to start (and isn't going to spend 2 hours a day for 2 years like we did in college/seminary to truly grasp the language [​IMG])
     
  5. TomVols

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    I agree on Mounce. Ray Summers's book "Essentials of NT Greek" is good, but you are not necessarily translating from the NT where in Mounce you are.

    As for Lexicons, the lexicon by Bauer, Arndt, & Gingrich is great for the NT. There is an Index available if you have no knowledge of Greek. Brown, Driver, Briggs is good for Hebrew and there is an index available for it as well.

    For word study books, I recommend the "Theological Wordbook of the OT" by Archer, Harris and Waltke (Moody). Zondervan publishes an excellent work entitled "New International Dictionary of Old Testament Theology and Exegesis" by VanGemeren. For the NT, A.T. Robertson's "Word Pictures in the NT" and Colin Brown's "New International Dictionary of NT Theology" are hard to beat.

    There are also some syntactical aids out there, but if you want to learn the languages, I might avoid them at first.
     
  6. Harald

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    Thanks to all for your advise. Some of the above I already have. But as to Greek I feel I have no good modern basics kind of book. I guess I was not so wise back then when I got Robertson's massive volume on Koine Greek first of all, the yellow one, can't remember the name right now. It is not exactly for the beginner. Mr. Griffin mentioned Ricker Berry's interlinear, this was the first book which introduced me to the Greek Testament, and yes, it is good indeed. I was glad to see it is even online at one site, although as a search facility kind of thing. I learned some things from reading that interlinear and it was one of the books which helped me see King James Onlyism was not according to godliness. Well, I guess this thing with good original language books is not so easy after all. One might save a lot of frustration and money if one gets the best books right from the beginning.

    Harald
     
  7. Searcher

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    ALso if you are planning on studying greek, pick up 'Exegetical Fallacies' by Carson. It is a fairly cheap paperback, but packed with sound advice for the greek scholar. It outlines the most common translation errors people make. I think it is a great little text.

    Searcher.
     
  8. rlvaughn

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    I concur with Searcher's comments on Exegetical Fallacies by D. A. Carson. Everyone who he thinks he knows anything about Greek should read it.
     
  9. DocCas

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    For the serious student of Greek I recommend "Essentials of New Testament Greek" by Ray Summers (Broadman &Holman). It teaches 8 case vice the 5/6 case Greek usually taught.

    After that I recommend "A Manual Grammar of the Greek New Testamment" by Dana And Mantey (Prentice Hall).

    Then "A Grammar of the Greek New Testament" by A.T. Robertson Broadman & Holman).
     
  10. Pastor Larry

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    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Thomas Cassidy:
    For the serious student of Greek I recommend "Essentials of New Testament Greek" by Ray Summers (Broadman &Holman). It teaches 8 case vice the 5/6 case Greek usually taught.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    I thought the eight case paradigm had pretty much gone by the wayside. You seem to be an advocate of it (though perhaps I am reading more into your recommendation than you intend). Perhaps either here, or another thread, you could enlighten us as to what you feel are the benefits of one system over another.

    Thanks
     
  11. TomVols

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    Aren't Robertson's works (save for his "Word Pictures") all out of print?
     
  12. TomVols

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    I like Ray Summers's work on NT Greek also. Only way I'd have Mounce's work ahead of his is in the fact that with Mounce you're translating strictly from the NT immediately. Summers doesn't go that route. Still, both are worth having. Summers's book was re-released in 1996 I believe.
     
  13. DocCas

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    Robertson's work is in reprint by Broadman. And Summers' work is presently available in a revised edition (revision done by Thomas Sawyer) published in 1995/1996 also by Broadman. [​IMG]
     
  14. Dr. Bob

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    Brother, I hurt my back every time I take Robertson's Greek Grammar off the shelf! :rolleyes:

    It has 1450+ pages, but it links to grammar a host of words/passages that give problem to the preacher. Use it regularly to be sure MY understanding of the Greek is on the money.
     
  15. Pastor Larry

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    Thomas,

    I thought the eight case paradigm had pretty much gone by the wayside. You seem to be an advocate of it (though perhaps I am reading more into your recommendation than you intend). Perhaps either here, or another thread, you could enlighten us as to what you feel are the benefits of one system over another.

    Thanks
     
  16. Pastor Larry

    Pastor Larry
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    Perhaps someone besides Thomas (who is not responding for some unknown reason) who might be familiar with the 5 and 8 case distinctions. I would be interested in someone "in the know" giving some information here.

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>I thought the eight case paradigm had pretty much gone by the wayside. You seem to be an advocate of it (though perhaps I am reading more into your recommendation than you intend). Perhaps either here, or another thread, you could enlighten us as to what you feel are the benefits of one system over another.

    Thanks<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>
     
  17. TomVols

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    Larry,
    I think you're probably right, or at least let's just say I share your assumption about the five case paradigm being the preferable method among Greek professors/teachers. Mounce utilizes it as well as Machen. Summers is the only one I am familiar with who utilizes the 8 case. The 8 case is still presented even in the updated "Essentials of NT Greek" by Summers. Here is a quote from that work that may or may not shed some light on this:

    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR> Greek nouns have four inflected forms, or five forms when the vocative form is different from the nominative. However, Greek has eight distinctive case functional ideas covered by these forms. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    So he seems to argue that there are five case forms but eight case functions. Distinction without a difference? Clear as mud? :cool:

    [ January 31, 2002: Message edited by: TomVols ]
     
  18. DocCas

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    8 case Greek is necessary for the simple reason the New Testament is written in 8 case Greek.

    Nominative - Designation
    Genitive - Description
    Ablative - Separation
    Dative - Interest
    Locative - Position
    Instrumental - Means
    Accusative - Limitation
    Vocative - Address

    The need for all 8 cases can be seen in the following declension of ανθρωποσ (2nd declension):

    Nominative 'ο ανθρωποσ the man
    Genitive του ανθρωπου of the man
    Ablative του ανθρωπου from the man
    Dative τω ανθρωπω to the man
    Locative τω ανθρωπω in the man
    Instrumental τω ανθρωπω by the man
    Accusative τον ανθρωπον the man
    Vocative ανθρωπε man

    The Genitive and Ablative are often the same construct in Greek, but carry a different meaning in English, as are also the Locative, Instrumental, and Dative. Context determines which case is exhibited. Case is a matter of proper parsing and interpretation.

    If we really believe we are dealing with the word of God, we should deal with it the way God gave it to us, and not according to our "new, improved, streamlined" methods. [​IMG]
     
  19. TomVols

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    Does anyone have any info on who else uses the 8 case system other than Summers? Does anyone have a documented reason why Mounce, Machen, et.al., use the 5 case instead? Mounce is relatively new, yet Machen's introductory work has been in use since the 1920s I believe.
     
  20. TomVols

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