Quote of the Day

From the Preface of the 3rd Edition of Robertson’s “Big Grammar”:

At the age of sixteen John Brown, of Haddington, startled a bookseller by asking for a copy of the Greek Testament. He was barefooted and clad in ragged homespun clothes. He was a shepherd boy from the hills of Scotland. “What would you do with that book?” a professor scornfully asked. “I’ll try to read it,” the lad replied, and proceeded to read off a passage in the Gospel of John. He went off in triumph with the coveted prize, but the story spread that he was a wizard and had learned Greek by the black art. He was actually arraigned for witchcraft, but in 1746 the elders and deacons at Abernethy gave him a vote of acquittal, though the minister would not sign it. His letter of defence, Sir W. Robertson Nicoll says (The British Weekly, Oct. 3, 1918), “deserves to be reckoned among the memorable letters of the world.” John Brown became a divinity student and finally professor of divinity. In the chapel at Mansfield College, Oxford, Brown’s figure ranks with those of Doddridge, Fry, Chalmers, Vinet, Schleiermacher. He had taught himself Greek while herding his sheep, and he did it without a grammar. Surely young John Brown of Haddington should forever put to shame those theological students and busy pastors who neglect the Greek Testament, though teacher, grammar, lexicon are at their disposal.

A.T. Robertson, A Grammar of the Greek New Testament in the Light of Historical Research (Logos, 1919; 2006), xix.

Now doesn’t that put you to shame…

4 thoughts on “Quote of the Day

  1. I read that story before I started blogging and it gave me a little more motivation to teach myself.

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