Teaching Children Biblical Languages - Is it Worth It?
The biblical languages are often full of mystery for us. We hear them referenced in the pulpit or spot them in a commentary, but for many Christians they leave us feeling intimidated, confused, or anxious about the English translation in our hands.
As a Bible-school and seminary grad myself, I learned to love studying the biblical languages, Greek and Hebrew. I ate up the Greek vocabulary words and trudged through the Hebrew parsing. And while there are a lot of reasons for adults to study the biblical languages, there are also good reasons for little ones to learn and love them.
The Soundness of Scripture
The Word of God holds up under great scrutiny. There have been centuries of scholars who have looked deeply into the soundness of the 66 conical books, and the Word of God have proven itself time and time again. By teaching kids that the Word of God was written in languages other than English, we give them a glimpse into the background of the Bible, opening up conversations about the way the Word was originally penned and compiled. Don’t let college professors be the first to tell them about the way the Word was held together, but take the opportunity to teach them God’s Word and about God’s Word now.
The Meta-narrative of the Bible
The Bible teaches one great big story from beginning to end. By showing kids how one word is used throughout Scripture, we give them a theme to trace throughout that great story. For example, when we look at the Greek word “logos,” meaning “word,” we see the ways God spoke to His people through prophets and visions in the Old Testament, and then how Christ comes bursting onto the scene in the opening lines of the New Testament. Jesus isn’t just a messenger fromGod, but The Word, the very essential message of God for God’s people. With one little word study (no pun intended) you can help your little ones trace one teaching throughout the meta-narrative of Scripture.
A Love for the Deep Things of God
God has called us to love Him with all our hearts and our minds. By studying the original languages — and the memorization that necessarily goes along with that — it reminds us and them to dive deeply into the Word. As we help them do the hard work of study, we form in them a diligence in studying God’s Word, help them cultivate a love for God’s Word, wet their appetite for deep Bible study.
We’ve created a resource to help you do just this. Big Words of the Bible help you teach your little ones 20 key Greek and Hebrew vocabulary words. Each card shows your kiddos where the word is used in the Bible, what it means, and what it teaches them about God’s unchanging character (plus, they have some pretty cute illustrations to help them remember each word). You can easily add them to your Morning Basket or add them to your homeschool curriculum!