Low-Stress Preparation

I think we have six or seven students now signed up for the class. If you have signed up for a wordpress account, I have made you an “author,” which means you can write your own posts and comment on the posts of others.

I will be giving a simple assignment or topic once a week and asking you to write a post about it. For this week, I would like you to start learning the Hebrew alphabet and to read the page on “The Name of God” (see the links below to “Judaism 101” or directly to the page.

The syllabus has a schedule of reading assignments. These assignments (reading and blog posts) are meant to help us start thinking about the subject matter and learning some of the content of the class–and to help us get acquainted. They are not meant to be stressful. If you are gone (for example) to a couple weeks of camp and don’t have internet access, just do two posts when you get back (or the week before you leave).

I just got back from a weekend trip visiting family and I’m a day or two behind myself. I should finish posting “Lesson 1” in the next day or two. In the meantime you can look at “Lesson 2” on the Hebrew language.

We will probably have a quiz on the Hebrew alphabet the first week on campus in Kentucky, but go ahead and learn it now and review it once a week or so.

If you have questions post a comment or email me directly.

Dr. Alterman


Akhlah: The Jewish Children’s Learning Network is probably the best site for learning the aleph-bet. The “Script” column is the cursive Hebrew Alphabet. If you plan to travel to Israel or to have an Israeli friend, it would be worth learning the script form.  The “Block” letters are the most commonly used form in print.  You will need to learn the block letters for class.   http://www.akhlah.com/aleph_bet/aleph-bet.php

“Judaism 101” is a Jewish site that provide lots of information. Make sure you read the article about the alphabet at http://www.jewfaq.org/alephbet.htm and the article on “The Name of G-d” at http://www.jewfaq.org/name.htm. There are several other articles you should read, such as “Torah” and “Hebrew Root Words.”  You might also be interested in reading a Jewish perspective on the Messiah at the same web site.

The Online Hebrew Tutorial offers free lessons.

The Wikipedia article is pretty good.

Omniglot has lots of links!

Note: Some of the sites show the modern cursive Hebrew alphabet. It is probably worth learning, especially if you want to have an Israeli pen pal. However, it is not the same as the hand-written Hebrew I use.

How We Will Use this Blog (Updated)

I believe the class officially starts June 30. I will post Lesson 1 by then, with other lessons following. Read the lessons and pay attention to any instructions at the end. In the meantime, you might introduce yourself. If you are a member of the class, you will be made an “author,” which means you can write a new post, and edit your own posts. You can also post comments on the posts of others. At your convenience, write a post telling a little bit about yourself, and greet others when they write their introductory posts.

Another thing you might do is read the posts by Chris Tilling on the OT Theology by Goldingay. I am using that as a textbook for another class I am teaching (Biblical Theology) this summer in Manhattan, Kansas. It is not a textbook for BIOT500, but you might find the reviews interesting.

Just click on the links in the post below (e.g., 1 of 5). You might also try out the links to the other Bible blogs. See the Blogroll on the right.

A textbook we will be using for BIOT 500 is Incarnation and Incarnation by Peter Enns. You can see my remarks about Enns and his book here. Dr. Enns has his own blog here.

Related to the historical study of the Bible, you might also wish to read my reviews of F. F. Bruce’s autobiography here and here.

Chris Tilling Reviews Goldingay

Here are Chris Tillings Reviews:

1. 1 of 5

2. 2 of 5

3. 3 of 5

4. 4 of 5

5. 5 of 5