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Finding Greek and Hebrew meanings


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#1 ttoney

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Posted 20 May 2009 - 04:57 PM

Hey Everyone,

I know this is probably answered somewhere on this forum, but I have not found it.

How can I find the greek or hebrew meaning of a word in a scripture? Whenever I open a greek/hebrew tool on a word, it gives me every possible definition/use of that word rather than just the one specific to that scripture. How do i know which of those is the word I am looking at in the scripture?

Thanks for your help,


Tom

#2 jpkang

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Posted 20 May 2009 - 05:16 PM

Hi Tom,

If you're using Accordance 8.2.3, and you amplify a Greek or Hebrew word (e.g., by triple-clicking, or by selecting the word and choose the Greek or Hebrew tool from the resource palette), Accordance will attempt to also search the relevant dictionary entry for the verse the word is in, and highlight the reference if there is a match on the latter (in this case, you should expect to see 2 or more hits, and only 1 if only the headword matches).

It may take a little scrolling to find the passage hit, but this feature will save you a lot of time. Nevertheless, in order to really grasp the dictionary editors' understanding of especially obscure or otherwise difficult words, you will want to read through the entry to learn what is at stake.

Also, perhaps just as useful, do you use instant key number highlighting (example)?

J. P.
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#3 Timothy Jenney

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Posted 20 May 2009 - 05:21 PM

Hi, Tom!

Good question!

If you consult a dictionary or lexicon on a specific word, it will give you the entire range of the word. That's just the way those resources work. Now, if your word has an unusual meaning specific to that passage, a longer article may well deal with just that passage. Try searching the dictionary reference field for that verse reference [Click in the verse reference, then amplify to the resource you want on the resource palette.]. This will give you ALL the articles that mention that verse, but you can often profit by reading all of them.

If you have a good exegetical commentary (Word, EBC, NIGNT, etc.), you can also search it for your verse reference. Follow the same procedure as above.

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#4 RobM

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Posted 20 May 2009 - 05:29 PM

How can I find the greek or hebrew meaning of a word in a scripture? Whenever I open a greek/hebrew tool on a word, it gives me every possible definition/use of that word rather than just the one specific to that scripture. How do i know which of those is the word I am looking at in the scripture?


In addition to J.P, and Tim's suggests keep the following in mind.

The definitional category that your reference is filed under will not necessarily be correct. That is not because the tool is inferior, rather, it reflects the interpretation of the writer/editor of the dictionary. That said, the interpretations of the writer/editor of the dictionary are very good due to the high level of scholarship of the writer/editor (especially for sources like BDAG, HALOT, and BDB Complete). However, the final word has not be said on every single word in the Hebrew Bible or Greek New Testament.

In addition, as you may have discovered. Every single passage is not always listed in the entry for a given word. This happens most often with frequently occurring words (e.g., prepositions; though sometimes you get lucky).

In summary, the definitional category under which a given passage is classified is helpful information because it gives you a very informed interpretation of the word you're searching, however, you the interpreter, in order to be thorough, would need to do some of your own work in the context of the passage as well as the contexts in which the word appears elsewhere.

Hope this helps!

#5 Helen Brown

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Posted 21 May 2009 - 01:50 AM

Also remember that the JP's suggestion depends on your General Preferences settings. It either does or does not highlight the verse reference along with the lexical entry, depending on the setting, but holding the shift key will reverse the setting for that action.

Tom: all these suggestions may be depending on advanced tools to which you don't have access, i.e. lexicons with many references to the different uses of the word. With simpler resources, and texts with key numbers, you may simply want to have several translations open in parallel. If your cursor is over a key number word, the actual Greek or Hebrew word will be highlighted in a tagged text, and if the cursor is over a tagged text, all key number texts will highlight the translated word.

Current texts with key numbers include KJVS, ESVS, NAS95S, NIV-G/K, and NRSVS.
Helen Brown
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