Not counting the two years that I spent in between college and seminary, this next semester will be the first semester of class that I’ve had without a course in Greek or Hebrew. This means, first, that I’ve successfully completed my grammar and syntax courses for Greek and Hebrew, something for which I can’t stop thanking God! This also means, though, that the ball is, and will forever be, in my court.

I’ve got to do the hard work of retaining all that I’ve learned. I’ve got to keep going through my paradigms, work through my flashcards, and read through my grammar and syntax textbooks. It also means that I have the priviledge of reading through the Greek and Hebrew texts (I guess there’s an Aramaic class awaiting me somewhere…). What a joy that’s been. I’ve spent my Christmas break reading and translating 1 Timothy. It has been a joy to read, and it has been a much-needed wake-up call for me to confront the ignorant, self-serving, Scripture-twisting false teachers (at least in chapter 1).

Languages are like air in an untied balloon; if you don’t hold that balloon tightly, all the air will eek out. I’d love to get to the point where I just know the languages without thinking or review, but that day hasn’t come. In the end, I have to be disciplined to keep refreshing my mind with the rules and the rudiments before it all goes away.

I pray that I will spend the rest of my life on exegetical digs, finding treasure that far surpasses the worth of gold and silver. And for those who would like to join me, I think you’ll find Jim Hamilton’s advice for Greek and Hebrew helpful.

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