A selection of Biblical Hebrew word studies taken from our courses and supplementary in-depth Hebrew word essays added online for general use.

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Hebrew fragment: Deuteronomy 6.4 - the Shema

HEBREW WORD STUDIES

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Painting Word Pictures

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It is a Chinese proverb that says that a 'picture is worth a 1000 words' and in order for you to understand the Hebrew language and its worldview it is helpful to paint 'word pictures', something that Hebrew is eminently suited to. Word studies can also be misused when no account is taken of a word's first use or its development over time.

For instance the English word 'comfort', used in John's gospel of the Holy Spirit as comforter, has changed vastly over time. 900 years ago it meant to prod and poke, even chastise, to get someone to do something - now it is far more passive and means a mollycoddlying 'there-there' pat on the back.

Both Luther and Tyndale were able to affect the outlook of the Reformation church by a change of wording when re-translating the Scriptures from their original languages into German and English: community for church, repentance for penance, love for charity and elder for priest. Words can change or define our Judaeo-Christian heritage and faith.

Pros & Cons of Word Studies

We will post an article here about the dangers and benefits of Hebrew word studies. Suffice to say that the up to 1500 year time period over which a Hebrew word was used can affect its meaning. Hebrew words are very often qualified by their context or by parallel terms used in poetic passages. Various opinions on their usefulness have been expressed by such names as Gesenius, Girdlestone, Boman, and Barr. We will examine these opinions in the full article.

More Word Studies

Far more word studies are available in the correspondence/self-study course: "BIBLICAL HEBREW made easy" but below are a few examples, more will be added, or why not email us with a Hebrew word or English Biblical term that you would like to see posted to this site or included in the course.

Hebrew Word Studies

Click on either the image or text links below to go to the respective Hebrew word studies:

Adobe Acrobat PDF files are available for viewing/printing (left click) or saving (right click link and select Save Target As...)

Some links my not be available yet

wdh - 'secret intimate friendship', Strong's 5475Download article in PDF format
torah twrh - 'law, instruction, revelation', Strong's 8451
deleth deleth - 'door, well, poverty', Strong's 1817
shama` shma` - 'hear, heed, understand & obey', Strong's 8085
mizbeach mizbach - 'altar, sacrifice', Strong's 4196

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