Mining for Meaning: Practical Ways to Analyze the Hebrew Bible

OT 2L03

Winter 2019
Wed 9:00 AM - 10:50 AM

Computers have revolutionized many human practices, including the study of ancient texts. Today, it is common for preachers and teachers to examine the Old Testament/Hebrew Bible using software tools or online resources. This course will demonstrate how free online web resources can be used effectively in order to analyze a passage “in the original Hebrew” so that interpretations and applications can rely upon a careful consideration of what the Hebrew actually says and how it says it.


  • To understand the metafunctions of language
  • To understand the reasons for variation in language: cultural, historical, situational, personal, social, etc.
  • To know some of the most frequent words in the Old Testament
  • To know the major grammatical forms in Hebrew and their syntactical relationships to each other (nominals, verbals, adverbials, phrases, clauses, etc.)
  • To understand Hebrew language units and their ranking
  • To know what is involved in moving from grammatical analysis to interpretation and application


  • To address over-confidence—or lack of confidence—concerning knowledge of the Bible, adopting instead an attitude of life-long learning
  • “To present yourself to God as one approved, a worker who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly handles the word of truth.” (2 Tim 2:15)
  • To be a mature and responsible interpreter of Scripture as taught by the Spirit (1 Cor 2:6–16)
  • To allow the Scripture to motivate, form, and transform our faith, worship, and Christian way of life


  • To develop the ability to talk intelligently about what the available linguistic information reveals about specific wordings (i.e. to explain both what a wording means and why it means what it means)
  • To develop the ability to move cautiously from the available linguistic information to a preliminary understanding of an actual passage of scripture
  • To be able to interpret Scripture more effectively with attention to the cultural, historical, and situational context
  • To be able to use quality online Hebrew resources critically and effectively