This weekend we went camping out toward eastern Ohio, in a little state park just south of Zanesville. A nice quiet place, it allowed us a chance to get away and relax, and also to engage in one of our favorite hobbies – thrift and antique shops. So on Saturday we drove up into Zanesville and hit a couple of stores and a thrift shop.

Flashback: I’m currently taking seminary classes and have begun to refresh my NT Greek so that I might take the course through TEDS’ online solution. While reading Summers’ text (Essentials of New Testament Greek), he pointed out that many omicron-stem nouns gained their iota in koine where it did not exist in classical.

Now back to the current time: So we go into a shop and on the shelf is an 1894 publication of Xenophon’s Anabasis, the first 4 books, in a volume designed for the student of classical Greek. Now, the day before I had been reviewing vocabulary & such in my Summers’ and Davis’ (Beginner’s Grammar of the Greek New Testament) texts. And just as Summers had mentioned, there was the term kuros, not kurios. Had I not been reading Summers I would have certainly been caught by surprise.

But apart from studying classical Greek, which I have in intention of pursuing to the level of a degree, the Anabasis (Anabasis (The Persian Expedition)) is worthwhile reading. The material takes place during the changeover from Artaxerxes to Darius. This is during Daniel’s time and might provide some useful background to what happens in Daniel. I have a lot more reading to do in assessing this.

Again, when it comes to studying NT Greek, it seems we are often shortsighted in our use of the language. Can you imagine the wars that might have come about were anyone to have actually translated baptidzo instead of transliterating it? And there is this term in Revelation, pharmakia, which gets a lot of attention in prophetic studies. But a book that I cited in an earlier post, Anatomy of Criticism, makes mention that in classical Greek this word would be translated scoundrel, and not drug-pusher or drug abuser. This makes me wonder if some of that nuance might be properly brought forward into our interpretation of Revelation.

But back to the main topic. There are lots of great, classic works available in thrift shops and antique shops. Like my 1984 gem that was priced at a mere $2.00, there is a great amount of valuable material that is lost to eternity unless those who care go out and snag it. Now! (Shopping: It ain’t just for the wife any more.)

Articles by Collin Brendemuehl

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