The Grateful Christian

Essays, opinions, and works-in-progress by a conservative Lutheran pastor.

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Location: West Michigan, United States

In order of importance, I am a: Husband, father, pastor, hobby programmer, writer. Thoughts are but coins. Let me not trust instead
Of Thee, their thin-worn image of Thy head.

--C.S.Lewis, The Apologist's Evening Prayer

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Doin' The 'Brew

I've been away from blogging, because my Hebrew verb drill program has been a HUGE project--so far I've entered over 2100 forms. Learned a bit of fancy new programming tricks, too, in the process. Really, it's been refreshing in many ways, because I'm basically re-learning Biblical Hebrew. I used to have a rep in college; they called me Yoseyf HasSopheyr (Joseph The Scribe); but it was largely undeserved. I just had an edge; my work-study was doing research and grading papers for the Hebrew prof, the sainted Art Sekki (passed away a couple of years ago, I heard).

Eventually, my program will be helpful to lots of students, I hope. Right now, it's helping son Noah with his verb drills--and me to rediscover the richness of the First Testament.

Watch for my press release when it's a bit further along...

Monday, January 02, 2006

I Know That My Goalie Lives!

Blogging's been slow, because I've been working feverishly on a Hebrew vocabulary drill program, trying to get it done before my son goes back for his second semester. (Hammoreh didn't work very well for what we wanted to do.) UPDATE since I wrote those words: He's back in school, and I'm still working on it, but he has a working prototype. I will not be blogging much while I am working on this project.

Researching verb object suffixes, I ran across a funny fact.

The Hebrew root for "redeem" is גָּאַל [sorry if that doesn't come out well. Displaying Hebrew correctly on a browser is a non-trivial research project!). It's pronounced gah-AHL, and in that form it means, "he redeemed."
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The present participle: "redeeming one" (masculine) is go-AYL. In English the redeeming one is better rendered as "redeemer."

Stick a first-person object suffix on it: "the redeeming-me one" and it becomes Go-uh-LEE. No kidding. That is exactly what Job 19:25 has in that famous precursor of the Christian hope, "I know that my Redeemer lives," which gave us one of the greatest hymns in English of all time.

Hockey fans, rejoice!