Modeling Biblical Language

Selected Papers from the McMaster Divinity College Linguistics Circle


Modeling Biblical Language presents articles with some of the latest scholarship applying linguistic theory to the study of the Christian Bible. The contributors are all associated with the McMaster Divinity College Linguistic Circle, a collegial forum for presenting working papers in modern linguistics (especially Systemic Functional Linguistics) and biblical studies. The papers address a range of topics in linguistic theory and the Hebrew and Greek languages. Topics include linguistic model building, temporality and verbal aspect, Greek lexical semantics and Hebrew-Greek translation, appraisal and evaluation theory, metaphor theory, corpus linguistics, discourse analysis, and Greek clausal structure. These various areas of linguistic exploration contribute generally to the interpretation and analysis of the Old and New Testaments, as well as to linguistic theory proper.

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Stanley E. Porter, Ph.D. (1988), University of Sheffield, is President and Dean, Professor of New Testament, and Roy A. Hope Chair in Christian Worldview at McMaster Divinity College, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada. He has published numerous books and articles on the Greek language, linguistics, and New Testament studies, including Linguistic Analysis of the Greek New Testament (2015).

Gregory P. Fewster is a doctoral student at the University of Toronto in Ontario, Canada, and a graduate of McMaster Divinity College. He is the author of Creation Language in Romans 8 (Brill, 2013) and co-editor of Paul and Pseudepigraphy (Brill, 2013).

Christopher D. Land, Ph.D. (2013), McMaster Divinity College, is Assistant Professor of New Testament and Linguistics at McMaster Divinity College, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada. He is the author of The Integrity of 2 Corinthians and Paul’s Aggravating Absence (2015) and co-editor of Paul and His Social Relations (Brill, 2012).

Contributors are: Mary L. Conway, Zachary K. Dawson, Gregory P. Fewster, Benjamin B. Hunt, Christopher D. Land, Hughson T. Ong, Francis G.H. Pang, Stanley E. Porter, Tony Pyles, Jeffrey Reber, Beth M. Stovell, Xiaxia E. Xue.
"This volume informs readership of some recent developments in linguistics and demonstrates how these developments may provide a more nuanced understanding of biblical texts. The essays are helpful in identifying particular linguistic patterns, discourses, and structures that can be used as supportive exegetical tools."
Svetlana Khobnya, Journal for the Study of the New Testament Booklist 2017
Modeling Biblical Language: An Introduction, Stanley E. Porter, Gregory P. Fewster, and Christopher D. Land

I. Modeling Language
1. Systemic Functional Linguistics and the Greek Language: The Need for Further Modeling, Stanley E. Porter
2. Aspect and Aktionsart Once Again, Francis G. H. Pang
3. Relative Temporal Ordering: Discourse Temporality in the Greek of the New Testament, Jeffrey Reber

II. Modeling the Languages of the Hebrew Bible
4. Appraisal Theory and the Ideology of Judges 6, Mary L. Conway
5. Sam(p)son’s Advent: Comparative Discourse Analysis of Judges 13 in Hebrew and Greek, Anthony Pyles
6. Yahweh as Shepherd-King in Ezekiel 34: A Linguistic-Literary Analysis of Metaphors of Shepherding, Beth M. Stovell

II. Modeling the Language of the Greek New Testament
7. Jesus before Pilate: A Discourse Analysis of John 18:33–38, Christopher D. Land
8. Towards a Model of Functional Monosemy: A Study of Creation Language in Romans, Gregory P. Fewster
9. An Intertextual Discourse Analysis of Romans 9:30–10:13, Xiaxia E. Xue
10. Reconsidering the Meaning and Translation of Πνευματικός and Πνεῦμα in the Discourse Context of 1 Corinthians 12–14, Hughson T. Ong
11. Metaphor Analysis with Some Help from Corpus Linguistics: Contextualizing ‘Root’ Metaphors in Colossians and Ephesians, Gregory P. Fewster
12. Language as Negotiation: A Functional Linguistic Model for Ideological Criticism with Application to James 2:1–13, Zachary K. Dawson
13. Meaning in Bulk: The Greek Clause Complex and 1 Peter 1:3–12, Benjamin B. Hunt
All interested in Old and New Testament interpretation, ancient Greek and Hebrew, linguistic theory, hermeneutics, and special topics in linguistics.