Monday, January 14, 2013

The Handy Guide to New Testament Greek: Grammar, Syntax, and Diagramming by Douglas S. Huffman – Book Review

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As part of my degree program for the Master of Theological Studies, New Testament Emphasis (at Moody Theological Seminary – Michigan), I will be required to take Greek. So when I heard about a blog tour for The Handy Guide to New Testament Greek: Grammar, Syntax, and Diagramming by Douglas S. Huffman, I was all in!

Here is the synopsis of this book:

Whether you're learning biblical Greek or using it, this is the reference tool to keep on hand. In a quick visual layout, it supplements textbooks to gives you immediate access to:
  1. first-year Greek grammar
  2. second-year Greek syntax
  3. step-by-step phrase diagramming
Easy to carry and easy to use, The Handy Guide to NewTestament Greek crystalizes the information you need to know for classes or enables you to develop a sermon or lesson outline from the Greek New Testament faster than you could from an English translation.

Here are some of the endorsements for this book:

“I enthusiastically endorse and recommend this altogether useful volume and will encourage all Greek students to buy it and keep it close.” – Scot McKnight, Professor of New Testament, Northern Baptist Seminary
“It is one of the best reference tools available.” – Rodney J Decker, Professor of Greek and New Testament, Baptist Bible Seminary

“Douglas Huffman has written a wonderfully practical and accessible handbook for students who desire to take the next step beyond elementary Greek. I recommend it with enthusiasm.” – Thomas R. Schreiner, James Buchanan Harrison Professor of New Testament Interpretation, The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary

“A very nice supplementary resource to traditional beginning and intermediate Greek grammars.” – Clinton E. Arnold, Professor of New Testament Language and Literature, Talbot School of Theology

Here is the biography of the author:

Douglas S. Huffman (PhD, Trinity Evangelical Divinity School) is Professor and Associate Dean of Biblical and Theological Studies at Biola University.

The Introduction explains the Who, What, Why, Where, How, and When of the book. Here is the ‘Who:’

This volume is intended for second-year Greek students (and beyond), pastors, teachers, and preachers. Constant NT Greek users (addicts!) might not need it, but would-be experts should find it useful.  (p. 5)

Here is the ‘Where:’

Since it presumes some of the basics of NT Greek, this book fits into the Greek learning sequence after a full year of elementary Greek has been mastered and then during and beyond the second year of NT Greek studies. (p. 5)

There are three parts of the book:

1.   Greek Grammar Reminder
2.   Greek Syntax Summaries
3.   Phrase Diagramming

I have not had any experience with the Greek language, other than knowing some of the alphabet because of the names of sororities and fraternities, not to mention some words I have been exposed to at church and seminary. I do very well with English and its usage, so I’m not TOO anxious about learning Greek – just a little anxious!

This book is only 112 pages – very portable and compact. I expect I will be using this book a great deal when I get to that area of my studies. I thank Dr. Huffman for writing this useful tool for Greek students, teachers, pastors, and preachers.

This book is published by Kregel Academic and was provided by them for review purposes.

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