Greek Google Alerts

I have it set up so that Google sends me an e-mail whenever someone writes a blog post about Greek and the New Testament. It has at times been beneficial and I’ve found a few excellent posts discussing some aspect of the language or exegesis of the text.

But the majority of “hits” that I come across are pretty worthless. Some of them are either long treaties trying to bolster the author’s pet doctrine with the Greek language. Others are more inspirational with only a quick passing reference to a particular “juicy” grammatical or lexical tidbit.

Of the daily e-mails there’s probably only one each week that’s actually worth reading through.

These are times when F. F. Bruce’s recommendation to not write about theology until you’ve been studying the language for 20 years seems incredibly valid. Although, I say that with the recognition that its not at all practical for pastors.

I would venture to suggest that in colleges, seminaries, and graduate schools where Greek is taught, there needs to be a greater emphasis on how language, meaning and communication function in general before students move on toward “learning”* Greek. Even a basic understanding of such things would help infinitely.

Until then, someone should start editing the internet.

Okay, end of rant.

*I put “learning” in quotes because Greek isn’t taught; its grammar is taught. There’s a difference.

4 thoughts on “Greek Google Alerts

  1. I came across an article today and immediately thought of you. It was K. L. McKay, “Time and Aspect in New Testament Greek,” Novum Testamentum 34/3 (1992): 209-228. Have you read it?

  2. “I would venture to suggest that in colleges, seminaries, and graduate schools where Greek is taught, there needs to be a greater emphasis on how language, meaning and communication function in general before students move on toward “learning”* Greek. Even a basic understanding of such things would help infinitely.” I would recommend an initial reading of Funk’s “Beginning-Intermediate Grammar of Hellenistic Greek” opening sections on “How We Understand Sentences” and “Learning a Language is Learning the Structure Signals” at ttp://www.ibiblio.org/bgreek/project/funk-grammar/pre-alpha/

  3. Carl – I have the “pre-alpha” of Funk printed out in two thick 3-ring binders, I love the thing so much. I am extremely appreciative of the work of B-Greekers in making such a fantastic resource available once again.

    My only question is whether those few pages of Funk are enough. Its definitely a very good start, but I think we need more, maybe even an entire class on Communication and Meaning or something like that.

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