The church today is built on the Reformation's linguistic heritage yet is in danger of losing that strong foundation. Many seminaries no longer require that their students learn the Biblical languages for their divinity degrees - some do not even teach them! Yet these are the basic tools of any study of the Bible, and if we don't teach the Bible, then what is the church teaching?
If we need encouragement as to what can happen to our sermons and Bible study when we develop a knowledge of the languages that they are written in then Calvin is an excellent encourager. John Currid shows us how Calvin used a knowledge of the Biblical languages to provide richness, depth and accuracy to his understanding of scripture - and his exposition of it.
If you want to develop a deeper ability to understand and explain God's Word then let the two John's guide you!
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Appendix: A Sermon of John Calvin on Deuteronomy 16:1-4
"If your language skills have become rusty and you doubt their value a few new books can help. Calvin And the Biblical Languages, by John Currid (Christian Focus; pb.), provides a good reminder of the importance and usefulness of the biblical languages for pastoral ministry and church life." - Preaching.com, website Bible and Bible Reference Survey, Ray Van neste
"I thoroughly recommend to all ministers. Those who have scoffed at the idea of learning Hebrew and Greek or who have jettisoned their studies once out of their college, will be powerfully challenged about their attitude to such important study" - Rev. Gordon Ferguson, British Church Newspaper.
John Currid is Carl McMurray Professor of Old Testament at Reformed Theological Seminary, Charlotte, North Carolina.