What Language Should I Learn?


#1

I’m wanting to learn a language that is used either heavily in the church or scripture, I’ve narrowed it down to two. Which one should I learn?

Latin?
It’s used very heavily in the Church, and I really love to say the Pater Noster (Our Father in Latin) and I would like to learn more prayers that I could say in Latin.

OR

Koine Greek/Greek?
This isn’t used as much in the church, maybe not at all, but It’s what the New Testament was written in, if I’m not mistaken. It would be interesting to read it in the original script as well.

Which do you recommend? I have experience with French, which is a Romance language, but I really don’t enjoy learning it, which is why I’m wanting to learn another.

Thanks for your help! God bless!


#2

It really depends. What do you want to focus on? Your area of interest will determine the answer to this question.


#3

I’d prefer Greek due to its prevalence in the Scripture, but Latin would also be great because of its use in Mass.


#4

First one, then the other.


#5

Latin is a lot easier, but if you want to focus on biblical study, go with Koine Greek.


#6

And then Hebrew :slight_smile:


#7

Latin would be easier as it only has one quarter the vocabulary of Greek, but learning Greek would open up a huge wealth of theological works which have not been translated into other languages. For example, only about one third of the works of St John Chrysostom have been translated into other languages. Most of what is available in English has actually been translated from Latin translations.


#8

I found Hebrew easier than Greek. I enjoyed it a lot more.


#9

Would learning modern Greek or Koine greek be more beneficial?


#10

Again, decide. If you had to choose only one, which area would you focus on?

If Scripture, which specialty? Old Testament? Hebrew. New Testament? Greek.


#11

Koine Greek. For sure.


#12

Koine Greek it is. Thank you all for your help! I found a textbook and a workbook on amazon for about $50 that I will be ordering.


#13

Koine.

Modern Greek is significantly different from the Greek of the NT.


#14

I am learning French, so I sympathise (I prefer Italian, but French has its charms). With the languages you are referring to, I’d probably learn Latin and Greek first, but Hebrew later. That is just me.


#15

I knew quite a bit of Latin, and started Spanish in the 7th grade, which helped my Latin a lot, since Spanish has a lot of Latin basis (as does Italian). At age 16 I learned Azkenaizic Hebrew (the old European form, used a lot in Eastern Europe) and learned to read the Mosaic Scriptures from Judaism in that, as well as pronunciation. (Problem with ancient forms of Hebrew – only consonants are written, you have to know which vowels go where!). Modern Hebrew is Sephardic Hebrew, which was developed by Jews coming from Spain, Portugal and Italy. The alphabet is the same, but pronunciation and translation completely different (to me, anyway). I then took both French and Spanish in college, which was definitely improved by some prior knowledge of the Latin used in Mass when I was growing up. Later learned about 4 others, mostly to speak, not to read, including Farsi (Persian), which I became fluent in over a 3 year period; then learned some Japanese, both verbal and some written in the more simple form (not Chinese ideographics), Arabic, etc… Loved languages! Only learned a bit of Greek in college, as one course in Literature required 6 weeks of Latin and Greek prefixes and suffixes. That was a huge help in learning medical terminology when I continued later after majoring in English Lit and History and became a Nurse.


#16

Learn first the language of God; that of love and mercy…by the time we learn that sufficiently we may find no need for another language to learn about God, nor the time left in our lives to study another.

Peace and all good!


#17

I would recommend learning Latin because that is the language of the Church, you could read the Latin Vulgate, pray in Latin, and read all Church documents in their original language. It is also helpful with understanding English and other languages, but I suppose Greek would also help in that regard.


#18

Java first. :slight_smile:


#19

Old Testament, Septuagint? Greek!


#20

Yes, if he would want to specialize in Septuagint studies. Same thing with Greek Fathers studies.

Latin, if he wants to specialize in Latin Fathers studies.

Again, all goes to what interests him more, and do that.


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