HomeBiblical TeachingBible Reading; as a Hebrew or a Greek?


Bible Reading; as a Hebrew or a Greek? — 2 Comments

    • Dear Mike,
      Thanks for your comment.
      The short answer to your question is: No, not correct; for I was writing about the New Testament.  The Old Testament was only written in Hebrew, for and by Hebrews. 
      The New Testament, on the other hand, was originally written in Greek (apparently with little bits of Hebrew and Aramaic also) and all the original writers were converts from Judaism to Christianity.  What matters is not the language of their writings, but the mindsets, the social conditioning, the very thought processes of the writers and their world-views, which they laid down for us.  Without a doubt, all were writing from a Jewish perspective, for that was who they were, Jewish converts who still used the scrolls/books of the Old Testament in the first Churches.  As a result of this, all the Churches which they planted, were Judean-Christian, in nature.  However the Church of Rome, which went on to be so dominant in the development of world Christianity, was the one from which the Jews were expelled at a very critical time.  When the Jews left Rome and the Church they founded, they did not (or could not) return.  This expulsion of the Jews from Rome changed the very nature of the Church of Rome from “Judean-Christian” to “Christian”.  However the Holy Bible upon which the Church stood (and still stands), was written by Jews, albeit in the Greek language, which was as you know, the lingua-franca of the day. 
      As is commonly agreed, the Gospel of Matthew is ascribed to the apostle Matthew, Mark to Mark the Evangelist, Luke to Luke the physician and John by Apostle John.  The book of Acts is also commonly ascribed to Luke. The Pauline epistles were written by the Apostle Paul, a former member of the Sanhedrin, who is also thought to have written Hebrews while the Apostles James and John and Jude wrote the remaining Epistles while the book of Revelation was written probably by Apostle John or John the Evangelist. Again all converts from Judaism.
      Any study of Hebrew and Greek shows that many words are be interpreted into English depending on context, for English has no exact equivalents for them.  The selection of words chosen in translation can ‘colour’ a translation such that the words are correctly translated individually, but the meaning is changed overall; their context has been changed. 
      The point of the article was to show that we today, who only have a Greek philosophical mindset, will automatically interpret the Bible in that way, not as the original writers wrote it and intended it, with a Hebrew mindset.  The resultant changes may be both subtle and dramatic, for it only takes a few words here and there to unveil “new” revelations and ideas.  The single example of worship = work, is but one.
      Mike, further to your comment, I have slightly amended my article to reinforce the NT – OT differences, and that my comments are basically about our interpretation of the NT.  Technically though, the same is true for the OT, but the Jewish scholars can be relied upon for reference, to make sure our understandings from the OT are correct.
      Thanks and Blessings, Angus

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