Students at our ulpans often ask about the relationship between speaking a language and scholarship. The question arises because most in the related academic fields do not currently advocate or practice speaking the language (and we are all greatful for the generations of scholarship in both Biblical Studies and Classics), yet we at BLC and [...]
A common objection to the communicative approach to teaching biblical languages is: "All we are aiming at is being able to read, not speak, the language." However, Frank Smith in his book "Reading without Nonsense" suggests that in order to truly read fluently, one has to depend less on deciphering the printed matter, and more on a background of already acquired knowledge. Though he does not highlight fluency as part of that body of "already acquired knowledge," it is presupposed throughout (indeed, it is unlikely that a non-fluent English speaker would be reading his work in the first place). It would seem, therefore, that without fluency, it is impossible to read effectively for meaning.
On day two of BLC's "With Jesus in the Galilee" we went to the historical site of Cana. Most people think of an Arab village just outside Nazareth, Kfar Cana, as the location of where the miracle took place. However, Kfar Cana was "introduced" in the Byzantine period so as to allow pilgrims walking from [...]
This is a translation question from a student for Dr. Buth:Dear Dr. Buth,Last night i was reading Psalm 16 and struggled with some difficultverses. I would like to seek your opinion on verse two: אָמַרְתְּ לַיהוָהאֲדֹנָי אָתָּה טוֹבָתִי, בַּל-עָלֶיךָA straightforward reading seems strange and doesn't make sense: my welfare is not upon you.BDB interprets this [...]
BY RANDALL BUTHThe land of Israel offers new opportunities and can change Christian expectations for Hebrew learning. Literature is a weave of culture and language. Christian academic programs need to ensure a high level of Hebrew at the end of the day. An investment of six months or more should actively build toward internalization of [...]