Koiné Greek

Discussion in 'Languages' started by Iakobos_1071, Feb 5, 2009.

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  1. Iakobos_1071

    Iakobos_1071 Puritan Board Freshman

    Any one studying the Greek New testament?

    Greek is way different than the Vulgar English.
    Koiné means Common. FYI, it is different than the Modern Greek language.

    Greek has a lot to it.. you know that you can spell the definite article "THE" 27 different ways and they have different meanings?..

    English has 3 tenses, (Past, Present and Future)
    Greek has 5!

    Greek has
    5 Cases (Nominative Case, Genitive Case, Dative Case, Accusative Case, Vocative Case)
    3 genders (Male Female and neuter)
    3 moods (Active, Passive, Middle)

    There is even more to it than that when you get in to singular and plural.

    I love it, but what is amazing is that God's word is more than what we have in English.
  2. Calvinist Cowboy

    Calvinist Cowboy Puritan Board Junior

    I am personally studying it at home and translating it in a Wednesday night class at my old church. We can have some lively discussions on what the text is saying! Right now we're about to start Acts 3.
  3. CharlieJ

    CharlieJ Puritan Board Junior

    You mean Greek has:

    3 voices - active, middle, passive.

    Also, 6 tenses - there is also pluperfect.

    It has 4 moods - indicative, imperative, subjunctive, optative

    And, I'm not sure that it's correct to say that the spelling of the definite article determines its meaning. The definite article has several different meanings, which can generally be expressed by any CGN combination.

    Also, perhaps it differs from text to text, but I was under the impression that English had 12 tenses.

    I'm glad you're learning Greek. I tutor it occasionally. It is a wonderful language.
  4. Iakobos_1071

    Iakobos_1071 Puritan Board Freshman

    Awesome... i am just learning! But I love it so far!
  5. CharlieJ

    CharlieJ Puritan Board Junior

    Glad to hear it. You need persistence to get through it all. The benefits of Greek (or any other language) are exponential. Usually, in the first 2 years, while you are still studying morphology and syntax, the real benefit to your ability to interpret Scripture is small. Once you get to proficient reading and discourse analysis, you can't put the difference into words.

    Self-study can be rough. Kudos to you brave sould. If you run across tough spots or have questions, send me a message. I'd love to work through it with you.
  6. Iakobos_1071

    Iakobos_1071 Puritan Board Freshman

    Thank you so much!
    Here are my tools.
    Strong's Concordance
    J.P. Green's Interlinear Bible
    a Parsing Guide
    I have a copy of the Byzantine Textform NT
    and some other reference material...
    If you have a chance see some of Jim Brown's articles.. he teaches Greek and was my inspiration to start studying.
  7. VictorBravo

    VictorBravo Administrator Staff Member

    I'm sort of bummed that you left out the subjunctive. :p

    (Sure, most people haven't heard of it, but it is alive, as it were.)

    And those three tenses are actually nine, if you break them out into Progressive, Perfect/Simple, and Perfect/Progressive.

    Throw in conditional formations, and English could almost be confused with a Romance Language! ;)

    Seriously, blessings on your study. It is very rewarding.
  8. Romans922

    Romans922 Puritan Board Professor

    :um: See --> fred greco:detective:
  9. BJClark

    BJClark Puritan Board Doctor


    I think it's awesome your studying these languages..

    I'd like to learn Latin, so that I would have a reason to use this old Latin Dictionary I have sitting here on my book shelf..published back in 1918 or the works of Horace

    Or even German, so that I could read The Elements of the German Language book I have..
  10. Whitefield

    Whitefield Puritan Board Junior

    Dunno, think it might be out of date? :lol:

    I'm putting a lot of time and energy into Latin right now.
  11. BJClark

    BJClark Puritan Board Doctor


    I didn't think Latin changed..unlike the English Language where people tend to change the meaning of words all the time..

    Though I'm sure some of the German Language may have changed since this other book was published back in 1888...but maybe not???
  12. Rangerus

    Rangerus Puritan Board Junior

    I've never actually spoken to someone who is learning Greek. (and I guess technically, I still haven't). But this thread makes me want to learn Greek. I've never before even dreamed I could.
  13. Whitefield

    Whitefield Puritan Board Junior

    T'was a joke about it being a dead language ;)
  14. Augusta

    Augusta Puritan Board Doctor

    I did a fast paced intro course last summer. I have to wait till this summer to pick it back up because I am up to my eyeballs in Latin passive verb paradigms right now. :eek:
  15. Hawaiian Puritan

    Hawaiian Puritan Puritan Board Freshman

    If it were me, I would have included it. :)

    Took Koine Greek in a class in senior year of high school. One of the French teachers, Mr. Dozois, also taught both Koine and Hebrew to interested students on Saturdays. He was a devout French Catholic and language fanatic who knew 9 or 10 languages. He used his own materials, plus we had copies of the "Englishman's Greek New Testament," an interlinear KJV with koine beneath. Don't know if that is in print any more. The first thing he had us do after we learned the alphabet and pronunciation was to memorize and recite the Lord's Prayer in Greek.

    And then several years ago two of the pastors at my church taught a course in koine. We used Mounce, "Basics of Biblical Greek." The interesting thing about that was that their pronunciation in some ways was quite different than the way I had been taught by Mr. Dozois. One of the big differences bieng the pronunciation of "x," which my pastors pronounced as "k" and Mr. Dozois pronounced like the Hebrew "ch" or "h" in Hannukah / Channukah. (As I understand it, though, no one really knows exactly what spoken koine originally sounded like.)

    I also have a beat up "New Testament Greek for Beginners" by Gresham Machen I found in a thrift store.

    I have enjoyed my brief stints learning koine, but boy is it hard, much harder than Latin which I also took at one point in my life. But there is something so cool about the Greek alphabet, and it is a beautiful and musical language. Especially when Mr. Dozois read passages of Scripture to us, it sounded just like poetry.

    For a good intro to koine, I would recommend the Mounce books (a grammar and workbook, which also has an interactive CD).
  16. LawrenceU

    LawrenceU Puritan Board Doctor

    I'll second Mounce. I wish it had been around when I was in college. We used Machen. Some classes also used Davis. They worked, and I thank God for them. But, Mounce is easier to see the 'scope' of the language.
  17. cih1355

    cih1355 Puritan Board Junior

    At my previous job, I worked at an air force base and I studied Greek with the base's chaplin who was a Lutheran. I would meet with him after work. We went through the book, Fundamentals of Greek Grammar by James Voelz. I wanted to study Greek because I wanted to understand God's word better. Moreover, I also teach 5th and 6th grade school and understanding Greek helps me to explain the word of God to them.

    Just out of curiosity, are there any pieces of literature written in Koine Greek besides the Septuagint and the New Testament?
  18. Contra Marcion

    Contra Marcion Puritan Board Freshman

    I've done two semesters of Greek at RTS, and we used Mounce there. He's like Greek for Dummies - Just what I need! Seriously, Mounce presents Greek grammar and vocabulary in a simple, systematic way that even I can follow. :2cents:
  19. CharlieJ

    CharlieJ Puritan Board Junior

    Koine, or Imperial Koine, refers to the common Greek of the period ca. 300 BCE - ca. 300 CE.

    The apostolic Fathers, the Didache, and many creeds are written in Koine. The Septuagint is Koine. Also, there are quite a few secular sources.
  20. Davidius

    Davidius Puritan Board Post-Graduate

    Although there is a classicizing tendency in some of the Patristic literature.
  21. Skyler

    Skyler Puritan Board Graduate

    I'm learning Esperanto...

    Seriously, though, I'm looking into studying Greek as well. Coincidentally, I found the Mounce curriculum and put it on my wishlist even before I saw this thread... good to know I had the right thing in mind. :)
  22. FenderPriest

    FenderPriest Puritan Board Junior

    As a general idea, if one were to do one chapter of Mounce's book per week, how many hours of total study per week do you think is required?
  23. Ex Nihilo

    Ex Nihilo Puritan Board Senior

    Surely this varies widely from person to person -- I can see it ranging from one hour to ten or twelve, depending on how easily you learn languages, whether you've studied a language with cases before, whether you are taking a class with periodic quizzes, and how thoroughly you want to learn Greek. I highly recommend getting the Mounce workbook, too! The workbook will slow you down if you tend (like me) to move on before you've really mastered the material, and even if you don't, it will probably make your study time more efficient.
  24. Scott Shahan

    Scott Shahan Puritan Board Sophomore

    :agree: I took a year of Greek 5yrs ago and our class used Mounce's grammar/workbook. Mounce, keeps it as simple as possible. I still use that old grammar text book for reference!! Mounce has truly been a blessing to the Church. Check this out it is!!

    MP3 Files for gnt (by Anonymous) | Christian Classics Ethereal Library
  25. Hamalas

    Hamalas whippersnapper

    I speak pig-latin. :)
  26. Jen

    Jen Puritan Board Freshman

    I never, ever, ever thought I'd say this, but... I like Hebrew better. :p

    We're into participles now (in Greek, I mean). At the break last night, I leaned over to my classmate who's also been in Hebrew with me since last Fall and said, "Aren't you glad that Hebrew participles aren't like Greek participles?" We're nearly done with Jonah and you can probably count on one hand the number of participles we've run into. (Though all those waw consecutives are boring from a first-year standpoint -- it's just a series of "And Jonah said..." followed by "and the sailors [did x]..." followed by "And [x]...". Repeat ad nauseaum.) At church we're going through the Psalms so I don't bother with using my Hebrew Bible (it being poetry and all), but sometimes when we're reading through the text and there are words I know the Hebrew for, I can kinda see what the Hebrew must be like.

    I took Latin before I took Greek and it's interesting to see all the similarities in the languages -- and the differences. Greek is definitely harder (and weirder!). The most complicated Latin prose I read was a bit of Cicero's Somnium Scipionis, but, all in all, you can definitely see the different minds at work in Rome and Greece in the way the languages work.
  27. Ex Nihilo

    Ex Nihilo Puritan Board Senior

    Jen, this makes me want to study Hebrew! (And to actually learn Greek, too.)
  28. cwjudyjr

    cwjudyjr Puritan Board Freshman

    We just started Mounce in one of our Sunday School classes.

    A blessing after just two weeks! Can't wait to learn more!

  29. ZackF

    ZackF Puritan Board Graduate

    I am resuming Greeks studies after a 10+ year lay-off. My studies were in Attic and Homeric Greek and so I am not going totally from scratch. Another important thing is knowing parts of speech. If you don't have a basic grasp of sentence structure in your first language it makes it tough.
  30. cwjudyjr

    cwjudyjr Puritan Board Freshman

    Is that kosher?!?! :think::)
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