Refreshing Ways to Connect with God: The Blessings of Learning One Biblical Hebrew Word

One of the many benefits of learning the Hebrew alphabet is to be able to look up individual words in the Hebrew lexicon. Hebrew is such a rich language. Individual words have such depth of meaning, usually more than can be expressed with one single, English-word equivalent.

Even in the same Bible passage, when the same English word appears in different verses, the original Hebrew word might have different nuances of meaning, based on how the word is used in its immediate context.

When you know the Hebrew alphabet, you can look up words in the lexicon and note the differences in meaning each time and place the word is used. These nuances bring even deeper understanding and appreciation of the biblical text you are reading.

Here’s an example from Psalm 143, a beautiful psalm in which David cries out to God in ways we can all relate. Why don’t you start by reading Psalm 143 all the way through in English before we go further and explore one particular Hebrew word.

Continue reading “Refreshing Ways to Connect with God: The Blessings of Learning One Biblical Hebrew Word”

Biblical Hebrew Alphabet: The Letters “Sin” and “Shin”

Near the end of the biblical Hebrew alphabet are two interesting-looking letters:

שׂ

The name of this letter in biblical Hebrew is “sin” (pronounced: “seen”). The letter itself makes the sound “s.”

שׁ

The name of this letter in biblical Hebrew is “shin” (pronounced: “sheen”). The letter itself makes the sound “sh.” Continue reading “Biblical Hebrew Alphabet: The Letters “Sin” and “Shin””

Learning the Biblical Hebrew Alphabet: The First Four Letters

Learning the biblical Hebrew alphabet can be a challenge, especially if you try to learn it all at once.

I had studied Russian, Greek, and Japanese (all of which use a different alphabet than English) before I learned biblical Hebrew. Even with my experience with other alphabets, I found the Hebrew alphabet overwhelming. Many letters look and sound alike. It’s like drinking from a fire hose to learn them all at once.

That’s why, when I teach a biblical Hebrew class, I introduce just a few letters at a time. You would be surprised how many words from the Hebrew Bible you can learn along the way, with just a few letters. Continue reading “Learning the Biblical Hebrew Alphabet: The First Four Letters”