5 Reasons Christians Should Study Biblical Languages (Hebrew, Greek & Aramaic)
Many Christians forgo studying ancient biblical languages, citing a lack of time or interest as the main excuses. Besides, Hebrew, Ancient Greek, and Aramaic are considered “dead languages” and are no longer widely spoken.
So the question remains: Why should one bother to learn biblical languages?
It’s not often talked about, but the beneﬁt of learning the Bible’s original languages is amazing. And contrary to what you might think, studying biblical languages doesn’t just beneﬁt pastors and theologians. It’s helpful to any Christian, whether one is a student, young professional, or parent.
Here are ﬁve reasons why.
1. It Afﬁrms God’s Word and Strengthens Your Discipleship
Nobody said learning languages (especially ancient languages) was easy. However, it’s well worth the effort. Doing so shows a great commitment to discipleship and sincere curiosity about God’s Word in its original transmission.
These efforts do not go unnoticed. Taking the time to learn and understand Scripture in its original languages develops a stronger relationship with the Lord.
2. You’ll Receive an Authentic and Pure Experience
So many great details and contextual links between passages get lost or misunderstood in translation. There’s an added layer of meaning and beauty that comes from understanding the original translations, be it in Hebrew, Greek, or Aramaic.
Learning a language means learning a way of thinking. It’s a mode of thought that’s often very different from our own and adds to the richness of Scripture. There is a reason why God decided to pass down His knowledge through Greek, Hebrew, and Aramaic. Learning them helps preserve doctrinal purity.
3. Better Preaching and Better Teaching
Although most who study the Bible’s languages (theologians) do not use them outside of an academic setting, these ancient languages serve a useful purpose for ministers, educators, and even laypersons who are working to lay out God’s Kingdom.
For instance, pastors who do not acquire some understanding of biblical languages deprive the hearers of the Word’s essential contextual knowledge and wisdom latent within speciﬁc translations.
Having the added contextual knowledge that comes from learning the basics of a biblical language gives pastors the ability to trace core themes and connections throughout the Bible. Certain messages are linked to keywords and phrases that link across books. Understanding these makes one a more effective preacher.
Educators of the Bible can improve the effectiveness of their teachings even with a limited understanding of Biblical languages. For congregations, learning the basics of these languages builds conﬁdence as a Christian and follower of Jesus Christ.
4. Deeper Understanding and More Accurate Interpretations
There are some deeper contextual connections that get clouded by translation. One biblical translation may be more applicable than another for meaningful interpretation and teaching of a particular Scripture.
Greek, Aramaic, and Hebrew have different idioms and structures than our language. Words are contextual and historically particular. They give insight into the minds of the original writers. This broadens our perspective, understanding, and appreciation of these Scriptures.
There are three major beneﬁts that stand out:
- Broader perspective
- Clearer, more accurate understanding of Scripture
- Better appreciation of God’s Word
Aids ministry. The contextual understanding that is brought about from learning these languages gives pastors greater conﬁdence when preaching and serves as yet another useful tool for effective ministry. You will be able to make connections between certain passages and emphasize particular keywords.
Increases conﬁdence. With more knowledge, you’ll feel more conﬁdent to answer questions regarding your faith as a Christian. And in your role as a pastor, it’ll give you the inner conviction to preach more effectively.
5. You’re Better Equipped to Defend Your Faith
As a Christian, whether you work within or outside of ministry, you’ll encounter people with antagonistic, false, or misconceived ideas on biblical meanings.
Biblical languages give you added contextual understanding that can be used to more effectively push back on these ideas with solid evidence.
Contact Global University Today for Enrollment
At Global University, we make it our mission to prepare you for long-term success in a ministry career. With web-based learning, you can study Biblical languages as part of the curriculum from the comfort of your home.
Contact us today for more information about enrolling in one of our degree programs.
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