Friday 22 February 2008

A Handbook of New Testament Greek Grammar by: Peter Frick

A Handbook of New Testament Greek Grammar
Peter Frick

ISBN 978-0973902655
Laodamia Press

I have had the pleasure and privilege of taking a number of courses from Dr. Peter Frick, at St. Paul's United Church College at the University of Waterloo. I have seen this book go through many transformations and different drafts and editions, as it was used in class with hundreds of students. I first
encountered the book in 2001 in the course it was written to support. Since that time I have gone back and worked on my New Testament Greek on a number of different occasions. I have even worked for Dr. Frick as a research assistant, and helped develop the web-based version of this course.

I have used about 15 different New Testament Greek textbooks over the last decade or so. Having a dual form of dyslexia, learning languages has always presented difficulties for me. When working on NT Greek I have used all the tools I could find - books, audio books, and Study Aids and Study Guides galore. The book I always come back to is Dr. Frick's.

Dr. Frick's approach seems to me to be the most logical and practical, such that by the end of the book you will have the 500 most occurring words in the Greek New Testament in your vocabulary. The next largest advantage is that by the time you are halfway through the book, you will have enough vocabulary to read entire passages in the Greek New Testament. Dr. Frick accomplishes this by introducing the reader to both verb and noun forms of the roots of words. What this means is that you will encounter words for which you know the root as either a verb or noun form, and recognize it, and can put 2 and 2 together and recognize prefix or suffix that is the other form as noun or verb with the root and determine the meaning of the word. This is one of the most encouraging results of Dr. Frick's method. As you progress through the chapters and the lessons in the book, you are able to read more and more of the New Testament and writings contemporary to it.

Another great strength of the book is its appendixes that have extensive samples of writings from the time of the New Testament, and Study Guides and Aids. The book also provides answer keys to working through each chapter.

This book will be of great benefit to a casual self-taught scholar wishing to read the New Testament in the original Greek, or to the serious academic scholar beginning his or her adventures in New Testament Greek Studies. I even know a classics major who took this course rather than the Classical Greek because of the speed at which he would expand his vocabulary in this course versus the Classical Greek course. Now after many years of revision in class, testing the material term after term it is finally published for the general public. This book will always be a treasured resource on my bookshelf. If you pick it up I am sure you will find it invaluable to your biblical studies as well.

(First Published in Imprint 2008-02-22.)

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