The Paroikos Bible Blog exists as a resource to those interested in Biblical studies and Koine Greek. It is hoped that this blog will simultaneously provide food-for-thought to the reader while pointing him or her in the direction of valuable resources, both in print and on the internet, that will further help his or her studies in the Word.

Jan 12, 2013

Greek Resources: Two Great Websites

Studying Greek is not just for "professional" students and Bible scholars! Many "regular" church folk throughout the centuries have taken up the challenge of learning the Biblical languages and making use of that in their own personal study, while, conversely, many "professionals" in the ministry possess just enough knowledge to be dangerous (e.g., placing too much emphasis on the Aorist tense in their sermons or falling into the etymological fallacy on the meaning of terms!). Furthermore, arguably the greatest Biblical language scholar of the 1700s, British abolitionist Granville Sharp, was self-taught in both Greek and Hebrew (though, admittedly, the man did possess an incredible intellect, enough to make Sherlock Holmes look like Elmer Fudd).

With that in mind, I hope that everybody, both those readers involved in academic studies of the Bible and those readers who are not, will take a look at these extremely helpful websites on the language of the New Testament.

Dr. David Black's New Testament Greek Portal
First off, we have the recently revamped "New Testament Greek Portal" by Dr. David Alan Black. It can be accessed here (or just see the sidebar to this blog). Two words: extremely comprehensive. Seriously, anything remotely related to studying New Testament Greek can be found here, generally in the form of links to helpful websites or programs. These include links to free flashcard programs, links to public domain grammars and other books on Google Books or The Internet Archive, links to websites on teaching Greek (including material on teaching Greek to children), links to dictionaries, and (for the more technically inclined), links to the full text of helpful articles discussing some of the finer points of NT Greek. Furthermore, the vast majority of the links on this website are annotated, with Dr. Black's own comments (or those of his grad assistant) describing what exactly the resource is good for.

Dr. Rodney Decker's NT Resources
Like Dr. Black's website, Dr. Decker's is devoted to providing the reader with resources on learning or teaching Greek. It can be accessed here. Dr. Decker's website is somewhat less comprehensive than Dr. Black's, but Dr. Decker is more likely to send the reader directly to his own personal discussion on a topic (normally in a pdf file). Dr. Decker's NT Resources site is a little bit less friendly to the casual learner, but does contain helpful, technical discussions on certain ares of NT Greek that you are less likely to find elsewhere (e.g., photos of papyri P21, technical diagrams of specific NT texts, Dr. Decker's famous "Poor Man's Porter" which attempts to delineate Dr. Stanley Porter's highly technical [and expensive] discussion of Verbal Aspect into a more manageable essay). Dr. Decker also has some helpful resources geared specifically towards students starting their first year of Greek (e.g., "Recommended Bibliography for Beginning Greek Students" and a chart on "Difficult Primary Verb Forms"). Finally, the NT Resources site also contains links to broader topics, including reviews of the ESV and NIV (2011), a "Bible Reading Chart," and a "Biblical Theological Dictionary" for those of us that need help sorting through the myriad of technical terms in Biblical studies. Also, there's a link to various papers in the ETS "Dispensational Study Group" which may prove interesting to some readers.

Both Drs. Black and Decker are bona fide Greek scholars with multiple published works (and great blogs), but more importantly they are dedicated teachers who wish to make the Biblical languages accessible to the average Joe (or Josephine).
[Irrelevant closing remark: Wouldn't it be hilarious to someday see a book written or edited by "Black & Decker"? Perhaps with articles on "Power Tools for Studying the Bible" or "Building up Your Church"? Sorry, couldn't resist a good pun]

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