Greek European Culture

Europe - West, Greek Language, Orthodox Christianity

Learning Greek without reason!

Please don’t let yourself be misguided by your current religious practices and affiliations. Not only as regards the learning of Greek, but also your overall thinking. To stay to the present example, of Baptism. You are in a wrong way if you try to justify this or that religious practice, immersion or sprinkling or whatever, by just finding out the definition of a Greek word. If you are going to study the New Testament your thinking should be theological and not only linguistic. In such a case you would first ask yourself, what is the purpose of Baptism (beyond the way it is performed), what is its meaning for our life? Baptism is the turning of the whole of man away from sin and close to God. This “whole” of man symbolically fits to a complete immersion in the water, as you can guess, so that, even if Baptism could mean “sprinkling”, a church should rather interpret it as a complete immersion.

2nd letter:

Thank you very much for your clarification. I felt a little presumptuous as a beginner in bringing up the subject to an expert. Consequently, I’m afraid I came off sounding a little combative, which was not my intention. But it is precisely because I am looking at this from a theological standpoint that I was concerned.

I will still have to disagree with you on the subject of Baptism, however. The following passage, taken from the Q&A section of (Wisconsin Evengelical Lutheran Synod), illustrates why, better than I can. Please note that the Seminarians answering the questions have had years of Greek themselves, as, unlike most churches nowadays, (I’ve heard there are even Roman Catholic Priests who don’t know any Latin!!!), our Pastors are still required to have a thorough gounding in the Biblical/theological languages. The second paragraph speaks particularly to your Luther reference, but in any case, we only follow Luther when he follows the Bible.


  1. Vasiliki Didaskalou

    At least you didnt have to go into a discussion about the translation of “adelfos” into the English (not so generous) word of “brother” … then you really would have had some fun!

  2. Les

    Loved the post which was both informative and pithy. I hasten to add that I am not a scholar of Greek (although I would love to learn ancient Greek) nor am I at all religious. The phrase”In any case, it is sad to meet with a person that chooses to ignore learning in order to save a little ego (and this wanting to be a Christian!) ” is particularly telling.