Greek and Hebrew

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Rosemaryx

Senior Member
May 3, 2017
1,133
308
83
57
#1
Hi all...I have started reading the bible from Genesis and I am now in psalms...What my question is, will not understanding Greek or Hebrew affect my reading, will it hinder me in any way...

I ask because I see so many people explaining words translated from these two languages and I know neither, and if I do not know these languages, will I not understand the Word:confused:...God is revealing things to me as I read along, and I am still young in my walk, but will there be a time when I will need to study these languages...xox...
 

Magenta

Senior Member
Jul 3, 2015
23,391
1,355
113
#2
Some people believe you do need to understand Greek in order to understand Scriptures :eek: Of course they say things like that while letting you know that they are studying Greek. The inescapable underlying message is that their understanding of Scripture is superior to any who do not read Greek.

We know it is the Holy Spirit of God Who leads us into understanding, not whether we can read a certain language. I studied the Bible for a time with a group of people that had as its "leader" an ordained minister who could read Greek, and Hebrew. They classified them self as an agnostic, denied the Deity of Christ, pooh-pooed the gospel of John, belittled what they called "the theology of Paul," did not believe that Jesus was sinless​, and rebuked me when I said that Jesus Christ died to take away the sins of the world, telling me that some people found such a belief offensive. Obviously, understanding Greek did nothing to enable or enhance their understanding of the Bible.

We read from multiple translations at once and compared differences, had lively discussions relative to the texts, and also went off on tangents about current and historical events. Reading the text was what was important for me. The fellowship was nice, too, even despite our remarkable differences :)

There is nothing wrong with learning words as you go along, by using an interlinear help. Many also use Strong's Concordance.


 

Rosemaryx

Senior Member
May 3, 2017
1,133
308
83
57
#3
Some people believe you do need to understand Greek in order to understand Scriptures :eek: Of course they say things like that while letting you know that they are studying Greek. The inescapable underlying message is that their understanding of Scripture is superior to any who do not read Greek.

We know it is the Holy Spirit of God Who leads us into understanding, not whether we can read a certain language. I studied the Bible for a time with a group of people that had as its "leader" an ordained minister who could read Greek, and Hebrew. They classified them self as an agnostic, denied the Deity of Christ, pooh-pooed the gospel of John, belittled what they called "the theology of Paul," did not believe that Jesus was sinless​, and rebuked me when I said that Jesus Christ died to take away the sins of the world, telling me that some people found such a belief offensive. Obviously, understanding Greek did nothing to enable or enhance their understanding of the Bible.

We read from multiple translations at once and compared differences, had lively discussions relative to the texts, and also went off on tangents about current and historical events. Reading the text was what was important for me. The fellowship was nice, too, even despite our remarkable differences :)

There is nothing wrong with learning words as you go along, by using an interlinear help. Many also use Strong's Concordance.


Thank you Magenta...xox...
 

Magenta

Senior Member
Jul 3, 2015
23,391
1,355
113
#4
Thank you Magenta...xox...
You are welcome, Rosemary :) Are you attending a church? I ask because a lot of churches have community Bible studies for the congregants :) I would encourage you to look into it, and attend if you can. If your church does not offer such a thing, or what they do offer clashes with your schedule, you could ask around or keep an eye out for studies put on through some other church.
[SUB][/SUB]
 

maxwel

Senior Member
Apr 18, 2013
7,411
541
113
#5
There is a reason translators are working so hard to continue translating the Bible into obscure languages...
that is so ordinary people can read and comprehend the word of God.

Most of our understanding comes through context, and the rest can be gleaned from cross-referencing, or deeper study.
So there isn't any reason you can't understand God's principles, and thoughts, in your own language.



Can you learn the original languages and keep digging deeper through linguistic study?
Sure.
That's probably a great thing to do if God has given you the time, acumen, and desire to do that.

But as Magenta pointed out, the primary key to learning God's word is to BELIEVE what it says.
If you don't believe it, no amount of Greek or Hebrew is going to help you.
 

Alertandawake

Senior Member
Aug 20, 2017
245
3
18
#6
With translations, the reality is, translations are never perfect. However, in saying this, we do today have many resources available to us, like Strong's Concordance for example, which in my opinion is a fantastic tool to assist people.

Also today we have the benefit of bible software where one can compare multiple translations.
 

Blain

Senior Member
Aug 28, 2012
14,604
445
83
#7
If my mind was capable of it I would learn and study hebrew and greek because I know that in the original languages it would be like reading the bible in a whole different light. But I also know that God does not limit anything for people like me who can't even begin to understand how to read that language, one can read the bible in the original languages it was written but the holy spirit is the best reading companion
 

CND

Junior Member
May 10, 2010
15
0
1
#8
O Espírito testifica em nós que somos filhos de Deus.
 

Mem

Senior Member
Sep 23, 2014
766
24
18
#9
Recently, there was an ongoing discussion about whether the OT saints had the Holy Spirit indwelling and Isaiah 63:11 was used as a proof text to suggest that it was indwelling in Moses, which, I think, is how the KJV translation represents the original language using "him" while others offer "them" which helped to include suggestions that Holy spirit was 'among' them. The unique thing about the original Hebrew is that, if two words are spelled exactly alike, or even very similarly, they are closely related in one way or another, whereas other languages such as English the same word can have more than one totally unrelated meaning.

So, to help clarify my understanding, and dispel the confusion, I thought to look up the Hebrew for "in the midst" and the, if I recall correctly, 29 other occurrences of the same word. What did I find? Sometimes it meant "among" and sometimes it meant "within". Although, it did imply "among" far more times than it did "within", it was still an inconclusive finding as to the as precise as can be meaning.

But, I entertained my propensity to be just obnoxious enough to post the passage in original Hebrew, if only to drive home the question of whether we truly 'know for certain' exactly what it says as some might so often insist. However, what gave me the best insight as to the exact meaning in the context of that verse came two lines before in verse 9 with the reference to "the angel of His presence [who] saved them."

Still, whether within (me) or among his people (you all), those two ideas that He is with us (Emmanuel) brings me an tremendous amount of comfort.
 

longtrekker

Senior Member
Sep 23, 2014
292
49
28
#10
.
My mother bought me a bible that had 4 different translations including the King Jimmy. They were all side by side by side by side. If a verse intrigued or stumped me i could crosscheck with another version without flipping the page. It worked pretty good for me. You don't need to be a theologian to get the Message!
 

Blain

Senior Member
Aug 28, 2012
14,604
445
83
#11
As much as the bible is a treasure for me I do wish I was able to read and understand it in Hebrew at least. The Hebrew language is fascinating to me, their words are completely different than the English language even just a single letter in their language holds profound meaning and symbolism in it. Can you imagine how sacred that must make the scriptures in their language? Not to say they already aren't but I bet if one is able to read it in their language it would open a whole new depth of the word of God
 

Mem

Senior Member
Sep 23, 2014
766
24
18
#12
As much as the bible is a treasure for me I do wish I was able to read and understand it in Hebrew at least. The Hebrew language is fascinating to me, their words are completely different than the English language even just a single letter in their language holds profound meaning and symbolism in it. Can you imagine how sacred that must make the scriptures in their language? Not to say they already aren't but I bet if one is able to read it in their language it would open a whole new depth of the word of God
I agree, I think the hieroglyphic (pictographic; logographic?) aspect of the Hebrew characters to be especially interesting.
 

Waggles

Senior Member
Sep 21, 2017
2,025
377
83
South Australia
adelaiderevival.com
#13
I got saved by believing and acting upon the
gospel in the KJV.
Didn't need Hebrew and Greek for that.

Just get a KJV and a Parallel Bible of 3 or 4
columns-
as for the Greek and the Hebrew purchase a copy
of E-Sword from Rick Meyers and you will get multiple
Bibles, concordances and dictionaries.
Just click on a word and see it in the original language.

e-Sword | Home


 

notmyown

Senior Member
May 26, 2016
3,430
255
0
#14
O Espírito testifica em nós que somos filhos de Deus.
The Spirit himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God (Rom 8:16)

occasionally, even slight knowledge of another language comes in handy. :)
 
Nov 23, 2016
510
37
0
#15
The Spirit himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God (Rom 8:16)

occasionally, even slight knowledge of another language comes in handy. :)
Ahhhh ... Veo que esta's usando mi tabla de conversio'n ? :eek:

 
D

Depleted

Guest
#16
Hi all...I have started reading the bible from Genesis and I am now in psalms...What my question is, will not understanding Greek or Hebrew affect my reading, will it hinder me in any way...

I ask because I see so many people explaining words translated from these two languages and I know neither, and if I do not know these languages, will I not understand the Word:confused:...God is revealing things to me as I read along, and I am still young in my walk, but will there be a time when I will need to study these languages...xox...
Understand we aren't reading "the original Bible." We're reading a translation. They didn't speak Brit-speak, Canadian-speak, Aussie-speak, or Ameri-speak. So the dudes who did the translating tried their very best with the information they could find to translate.

But the world is getting more advanced than it was. I admire Jerome. He was one of the first, (if not the first) to translate the Bible from original language into his language. And his language was Latin. He made what we now call the Vulgate. Can you imagine translating the whole Bible? (I can only imagine it would take me a week to translate a word. lol)

But he got some stuff wrong, because Ancient Hebrew was old even back in his day. (Like reading Middle English to us.) And even the Greek was losing the same meanings. (Like reading "awful" in KJV. It means "full of awe." Not we mean when we say, "awful.") One of the words he got wrong was "repent." He translated it to "penance." See the problem? The RCC committed to "penance" way back then.

But Jerome didn't have planes, trains, and automobiles to go around the known world to source out what other scholars thought and learned from their studies, so I admire him.

Fast forward to your country in the 1600's and King James wanting a new translation. I also admire the scholars who worked on that translation. They did use earlier translations, along with the some manuscripts they found, so they had more sources than Jerome, (including Jerome. lol) But how do you like your bunnies?

Did you know bunnies are from your neck of the woods? We imported them back when we belong to England. Can't see any great harm in that, because thems good eats, and fluffy and cute, but the poor Aussies did the same thing, and that didn't work out so well for them. All the world (except for the polar caps) have bunnies now. BUT the middle east didn't have bunnies back in the days of clean and unclean food listing in the Bible. According to my understanding, even if I went kosher, I could still eat rabbit, except the KJV translators didn't know the Middle East had a rodent England didn't have, so they translated it to what they did know -- bunnies. (Okay, rabbit. But I like bunny better. lol)

Now we know. And the translating continues.

Nephilim. You know. "The giants." Well, that might not be giant. It might be "feller." (No idea what a feller is, but I do remember looking it up once and getting it. I just didn't care enough to remember, because I like the mystery of the word "feller" better.) Nephilim was/is (haven't kept up to see if anyone found the answer yet) a mystery word now. What I read about it came from the 19th or 20th century, and archaeologists are still sorting through sites, so could have learn more since. But back then the word was only found four times in all ancient literature -- twice in the Bible (before and after the flood) and twice elsewhere. Since the languages are gone for so long, they have to keep guessing until they can figure out for sure in context.

So, translations aren't always exact. The amazing part is notice the exceptions? Who cares if it was a giant or a feller? Who cares if it was a rabbit or a rodent? (Yeah. I know. Rabbits are rodents.) All in all, God's word has been given to us in a translation we can understand without having to know original languages.

I said before, I can't learn languages. I'm fine reading the Bible without them. And, if I don't get a verse, or think I might be missing something? I'm on eSword, so I just flicky-flicky to another version to see if it's different. It works for me. I'm no Bible scholar. I just know which Bible scholars I trust. So, I read commentaries from them to pick up what I'm missing.

BUT do you know when it becomes good to learn original languages? If you're one of those smart people, (and I'm not), who can actually understand Van Til, or Calvin, or Luther, or Hus or whoever. Because, seriously? Those dudes did footnotes galore! Read one of there books, and half the page -- every page -- is footnotes. And the footnotes are in the languages they understood. Greek, Latin, Ancient Hebrew, and German.

I'm not one of those smart people. I'm fine with that. I married one. He wasn't fine not knowing, so he tried to study to learn the languages, because he really wanted to understand those footnotes.

THAT's when it's time to learn a language, (if you can. :rolleyes:) As long as you know it's a translation, so it might not be 100% accurate, but you can look up the words in a concordance if worse comes to worse, you're good on Brit-speak. (And pretty good with Ameri-speak, since you can understand me most of the time. lol) Which concordance?

Ah, now! That's Argument #2! lol
 

preacher4truth

Senior Member
Dec 28, 2016
6,037
292
83
#17
I got saved by believing and acting upon the
gospel in the KJV.
Didn't need Hebrew and Greek for that.

Just get a KJV and a Parallel Bible of 3 or 4
columns-
as for the Greek and the Hebrew purchase a copy
of E-Sword from Rick Meyers and you will get multiple
Bibles, concordances and dictionaries.
Just click on a word and see it in the original language.

e-Sword | Home


e-sword is free.
 
D

Depleted

Guest
#18
O Espírito testifica em nós que somos filhos de Deus.
Romans 8:16

(Nope. Couldn't translate, but Google did.)
 

Rosemaryx

Senior Member
May 3, 2017
1,133
308
83
57
#19
Understand we aren't reading "the original Bible." We're reading a translation. They didn't speak Brit-speak, Canadian-speak, Aussie-speak, or Ameri-speak. So the dudes who did the translating tried their very best with the information they could find to translate.

But the world is getting more advanced than it was. I admire Jerome. He was one of the first, (if not the first) to translate the Bible from original language into his language. And his language was Latin. He made what we now call the Vulgate. Can you imagine translating the whole Bible? (I can only imagine it would take me a week to translate a word. lol)

But he got some stuff wrong, because Ancient Hebrew was old even back in his day. (Like reading Middle English to us.) And even the Greek was losing the same meanings. (Like reading "awful" in KJV. It means "full of awe." Not we mean when we say, "awful.") One of the words he got wrong was "repent." He translated it to "penance." See the problem? The RCC committed to "penance" way back then.

But Jerome didn't have planes, trains, and automobiles to go around the known world to source out what other scholars thought and learned from their studies, so I admire him.

Fast forward to your country in the 1600's and King James wanting a new translation. I also admire the scholars who worked on that translation. They did use earlier translations, along with the some manuscripts they found, so they had more sources than Jerome, (including Jerome. lol) But how do you like your bunnies?

Did you know bunnies are from your neck of the woods? We imported them back when we belong to England. Can't see any great harm in that, because thems good eats, and fluffy and cute, but the poor Aussies did the same thing, and that didn't work out so well for them. All the world (except for the polar caps) have bunnies now. BUT the middle east didn't have bunnies back in the days of clean and unclean food listing in the Bible. According to my understanding, even if I went kosher, I could still eat rabbit, except the KJV translators didn't know the Middle East had a rodent England didn't have, so they translated it to what they did know -- bunnies. (Okay, rabbit. But I like bunny better. lol)

Now we know. And the translating continues.

Nephilim. You know. "The giants." Well, that might not be giant. It might be "feller." (No idea what a feller is, but I do remember looking it up once and getting it. I just didn't care enough to remember, because I like the mystery of the word "feller" better.) Nephilim was/is (haven't kept up to see if anyone found the answer yet) a mystery word now. What I read about it came from the 19th or 20th century, and archaeologists are still sorting through sites, so could have learn more since. But back then the word was only found four times in all ancient literature -- twice in the Bible (before and after the flood) and twice elsewhere. Since the languages are gone for so long, they have to keep guessing until they can figure out for sure in context.

So, translations aren't always exact. The amazing part is notice the exceptions? Who cares if it was a giant or a feller? Who cares if it was a rabbit or a rodent? (Yeah. I know. Rabbits are rodents.) All in all, God's word has been given to us in a translation we can understand without having to know original languages.

I said before, I can't learn languages. I'm fine reading the Bible without them. And, if I don't get a verse, or think I might be missing something? I'm on eSword, so I just flicky-flicky to another version to see if it's different. It works for me. I'm no Bible scholar. I just know which Bible scholars I trust. So, I read commentaries from them to pick up what I'm missing.

BUT do you know when it becomes good to learn original languages? If you're one of those smart people, (and I'm not), who can actually understand Van Til, or Calvin, or Luther, or Hus or whoever. Because, seriously? Those dudes did footnotes galore! Read one of there books, and half the page -- every page -- is footnotes. And the footnotes are in the languages they understood. Greek, Latin, Ancient Hebrew, and German.

I'm not one of those smart people. I'm fine with that. I married one. He wasn't fine not knowing, so he tried to study to learn the languages, because he really wanted to understand those footnotes.

THAT's when it's time to learn a language, (if you can. :rolleyes:) As long as you know it's a translation, so it might not be 100% accurate, but you can look up the words in a concordance if worse comes to worse, you're good on Brit-speak. (And pretty good with Ameri-speak, since you can understand me most of the time. lol) Which concordance?

Ah, now! That's Argument #2! lol
I love how you drop your humor in Lynn ;), mostly always a good chuckle...No I will not be learning any new language, I will just do what I have always done and rely on the Holy Spirit, He has not failed me yet :)...

I just see so many writing their post in Scripture and using names from the Hebrew, but I must admit I can not read through their long post because my mind can not understand it , and I just thought " Do I have to learn like them to understand what they are saying "...Feel bad saying that really because what they write is God`s word, but my mind can not get it so I scroll past their post and probably miss out on quite a bit of teaching...Oh well, I am now happy to know that it is not a necessity to learn greek or Hebrew...xox...