Description: 

This course is a basic introduction to Greek, Hebrew, and Aramaic using Hebrew, Aramaic, and Greek resources in e-Sword and TheWord. Emphasis is on the original languages with more attention to Greek, the alphabets of both languages, the nuances of grammar in relation to understanding the text, and the use of major tools for original language study. Upon completion, students should be able to employ the original language tools found in software programs profitably and responsibly in using the Hebrew Bible and the Greek New Testament to prepare articles, sermons and Bible studies, and demonstrate the proper use of an interlinear text in understanding the meaning of biblical text.

Overview: 

Introduction to Biblical Languages and Resources is designed to give students in introductory exposure to Greek and Hebrew – the inspired languages for the new and old testaments of the Bible. Students will be introduced to the Greek and Hebrew alphabets, and some of the major grammatical issues of each language and exposed to grammatical issues as they relate to more deeply understanding the biblical text. This class will also explore different electronic and online biblical language exploration and interpretation tools. The purpose of this class is not to develop strong Greek and Hebrew language skills. It is rather designed to help students develop a comfort-level, and basic understanding of the languages and the skill to explore the nuances of the languages further using electronic tools.

Prerequisites: 
There are no Prerequisites or Corequisites for this course.
Instructor: 

Maidanos, Emanuel J.

Lecturer in Theology
Part Time
Degrees: 
B.A. (1970), Ambassador University; M.A. (1975), Pepperdine University.
Subject Matter: 
Biblical Languages

Emanuel Maidanos received his B.A. from Ambassador College in Pasadena, CA., and his M.A. from Pepperdine University in Los Angeles, CA.He was born in New York City, and grew up in Delaware. He has had a lifelong interest in history, geography, the Bible and languages. While attending Ambassador College, he spent the summer in Greece to become more familiar with the language and the culture. He also travelled to Turkey to visit the Seven Churches of Asia as well as visiting the dig in Jerusalem. At Pepperdine University his main areas of studies were Judaism of the First Century, Hellenistic Greek and the Exegesis of various books of the New Testament. He has made several trips to Greece, Turkey, Israel, Jordan, Egypt and western Europe. After graduating from Pepperdine University he has worked in several industries. He worked in both the Printing and in the Machining Industries, and then became a Computer Consultant working with Databases on several large projects for the Federal Government. 

Course Credit: 
Three (3) semester hours
Instructional Objectives: 

As a result of participating in THL 300, students will:

  1. Comfortably identify the letters of both the Greek and the Hebrew alphabet.
  2. Comfortably recognize some words, cities, and locations in Greek that are already known in English.
  3. Identify a selection of common Greek words and sentence structures.
  4. Demonstrate a basic understanding of Greek verbs and the type of action intended as dictated by context
  5. Practice using Greek and Hebrew Lexicons.
  6. Understanding the different types of concordances and their strengths and weaknesses.
  7. Execute words studies in order to understand use and meaning in context.
  8. Develop a basic understanding of several Bible software tools including e-Sword and The Word,
  9. Gain exposure to Aramaic, the third major language used in the Bible.
Required Texts: 

Greek:
The Elements of New Testament Greek (cost about $35.00)
by Jeremy Duff
3rd edition
Cambridge University Press, 2012

Lexical Aids for Students of New Testament Greek  (cost about $8.00)
by Bruce M. Metzger
3rd edition

Hebrew:
Biblical Hebrew, A Compact Guide (cost about $16.00)
by Miles V.  Van Pelt
Zondervan, 2012

Additional Readings: 

Additional material will be supplied during the course, some from church literature and some from secular sources.

Course Calendar: 
Lesson Topic
Lesson 1  General Introduction to the Course
Lesson 2  Introduction to the Greek Alphabet - It is Not as Foreign as You Think
Lesson 3  Learning More About the Greek Alphabet, Punctuation, Proper Names, Nouns and Adjectives
Lesson 4 Inflections of Words and Sentence Structure
Lesson 5 Greek Verbs - How to Understand the Type of Intended Action
Lesson 6 Concordances, Analytical Lexicons, and Lexicons - Learning How to Use Them
Lesson 7 Moods and the Imperative Tense
Lesson 8 Word Studies, Figures of Speech and Context
Lesson 9  Additional Parts of Speech - Participle and the Infinitive and Final Overview of Greek
Lesson 10 Additional Aids to Understand the OT - Josephus, LXX, and the Dead Sea Scrolls
Lesson 11 Hebrew - Grasping an Ancient Major Alphabet
Lesson 12 Hebrew Alphabet Continued
Lesson 13 Hebrew Nouns and Verbs - Sentence Structure
Lesson 14  Overview of Aramaic in the Old Testament
Lesson 15 Wrap Up and Review of Critical Points for Final Test
Course Requirements: 

Due dates and extensions
Submit assignments on or before the date due. Students must complete the course by the last official day of instruction as set forth in the academic calendar.

Icebreaker
To officially begin this course you must complete an Icebreaker assignment by which you introduce yourself to your classmates through posting a short autobiography on the Icebreaker discussion forum. This assignment is due by end of the first week of class. In your forum post, briefly provide the following information:

  1. Your first and last name, where you grew up, and where you are currently living.
  2. Tell us a little about your background. Did you grow up in the church? When did you begin attending God’s Church? How long have you been reading church literature?
  3. Tell us about your education, technical schools or colleges attended, degrees, etc.
  4. List some of your favorite subjects, interests, hobbies and activities.
  5. Please indicate if you are familiar with or have been exposed to any foreign languages. If so, which one(s)?
  6. Tell why you are taking this course and what do you hope to learn from it. 

Be sure to comment back to at least two of your classmates. The assignment is worth 20 points.

Reading assignments
Be sure to read the lesson material corresponding to the class lecture and complete the appropriate quiz prior to the next lesson.  Readings will help you be better informed, and help you comprehend and appreciate the material in subsequent lessons.

Viewing assignments
This course includes a series of lectures. Lectures will also use PowerPoint slides. Videos will periodically be available for download with some lectures.

Discussion forums
For each discussion forum you will be asked to post your thoughts and insights on the discussion topic. The instructor will post some questions. You are also encouraged to ask technical questions about the subject matter from areas in the lecture that you have questions on, or are confused about. Remember there are no “dumb” questions. You are also invited to comment on the postings of others. This is your opportunity to participate in interactive dialog and help one another learn. Discussions also assist the instructor in determining course content that needs more attention.

Writing assignments
Writing assignments should follow the MLA style as set forth in Writing Research Papers: A Complete Guide (14th edition) by Lester & Lester. Please cite your sources and use quotation marks where needed.

  • Practice Writing Exercises: Practice writing is an exercise to help the students become comfortable with both the Greek and the Hebrew alphabets. Instruction on how to make each letter will be provided. Students are encouraged to practice to become comfortable with each alphabet. These exercises may be repeated if desired. Perfection is not the goal, but practice will help increase your familiarity the alphabet and the language.  
  • Writing Assignments: Students will be asked to research several Greek words and their use in the biblical text. This activity will assist students as they learn how to use print and electronic research tools.

Quizzes and examinations
Many lessons will include a quiz or exercise of some kind. Quizzes are “open book” and there is no time limit. The purpose of the quiz is to increase understanding of the lesson material and to guide students into mastery of lesson content. If there is any confusion about the lesson, contact the instructor via email. Quizzes and examinations may include true/false, matching, and multiple–choice questions covering lectures, readings, vocabulary words, geographical terms, place names and discussion topics. One may retake a quiz. There is a maximum of three re-takes for the Greek portion and three re-takes maximum for the Hebrew/Aramaic portion. It may be the same quiz or 3 different quizzes, for a total of 3 maximum. The retries for the Greek portion must be taken one week after the last class in the Greek section, at the latest.  The retries for the Hebrew/Aramaic must be before completed before the last day of class. 

Course evaluation
Your input on the course is welcome. It may help to improve the course in a variety of ways. You can always make suggestions by email. Our goal is to make this material as easy to comprehend as possible. At the end of the semester, an ALERT on your student dashboard will notify you when the evaluation is available for completion. Because the survey is anonymous, in order to have the ascribed points allocated, post a notice on the Course Evaluation assignment webpage noting that you have completed the evaluation. It is worth 20 points toward your overall grade.

GRADING

Grades will be straight A, B, C, D, or F. In distance learning we believe that mastery of the material is critical, so a personal goal of 80% of the objectives should be set. This course is based on competency, so it is possible for the entire class to receive an A or B. There will be no bell curve, that is there is no artificial curving of scores in the assignment of grades. Mastery of the material should be your goal.

Summary of Course Requirements Point Value   Letter Grade Total Points
Icebreaker Assignment 20   A 900 points or above (90%)
Discussion Forums (10 @ 30 points) 300   B 800-899 points (80%)
Practice Writing Exercises (4 @ 25 points) 100   C 700-799 points (70%)
Writing Assignments (2 @ 50 points) 100   D 600-699 points (60%)
Quizzes (12 @ 30 points) 360   F 599 points or below
Final Exam 100      
Course Evaluation 20      
Total 1000      

Students With Disabilities
The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) is a federal anti-discrimination statute that provides comprehensive civil rights protection for persons with disabilities. Among other things, this legislation requires that all students with disabilities have a learning environment that provides for reasonable accommodation of their disabilities. Students having a disability requiring an accommodation should inform the instructor by email (on the “Course Info” page click on the instructor’s name and then select “Send Email”).

Technology Access
This course requires web access and the student has to have an established e-mail account. The Adobe Acrobat Reader is necessary to view documents that are PDF files. One can download the reader free at http://www.adobe.com/products/acrobat/readstep2.html.

Course Evaluation
Student input is welcome for improving this course. Making suggestions by e-mail is helpful. Our goal in this course is to facilitate the successful achievement of all instructional objectives by all students. At the end of the course students have the opportunity of assessing the course. We want to make e-learning courses as effective as we can. We may also ask some other questions concerning a student’s experience in distance learning to help us improve our program. We appreciate students letting us know how we can improve our products and services for them and other distance learners.

Withdrawing From or Dropping This Course
It is the responsibility of a student to drop a course if he or she cannot meet the requirements of the course. Any student who stops attending a course without officially withdrawing from it risks receiving a punitive grade for that course. Withdrawal requests may be conveyed in any manner to the course professor, Registrar, or Vice President of Academic Affairs. This action is sufficient for ensuring any refund owed you. Please note the following: If a student drops a course on or before the “Last day to withdraw from a course without a grade penalty” as published in the University Academic Calendar, even if his or her work is not of a passing grade, then a “W” is recorded. If a course is dropped after that date, but before the last 21 calendar days of the semester, then the instructor determines the grade. The faculty member will at this time record a grade of “W” if passing (not computed in GPA) or “WF” if failing (computed in GPA). Students who drop a course, yet remain in one or more other courses during the last 18 calendar days of the semester, will receive a grade of “WF.” Students who completely withdraw from the University at any time during the semester may be given a grade of “W” on all courses. If students do not initiate the withdrawal process, the instructor is required to initiate the administrative process and to record a grade of “W” or “WF” for the course depending on the date the faculty member drops the student from the course. Students who register for a course as an audit, but then withdraw will be assigned a grade of “W” for the course.