Greek for Life

Strategies for Learning, Retaining, and Reviving New Testament Greek

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Learning Greek is one thing. Retaining it and using it in preaching, teaching, and ministry is another. In this volume, two master teachers with nearly forty years of combined teaching experience inspire readers to learn, retain, and use Greek for ministry, setting them on a lifelong journey of reading and loving the Greek New Testament.

Designed to accompany a beginning or intermediate Greek grammar, this book offers practical guidance, inspiration, and motivation; presents methods not usually covered in other textbooks; and surveys helpful resources for recovering Greek after a long period of disuse. It also includes devotional thoughts from the Greek New Testament. The book will benefit anyone who is taking (or has taken) a year of New Testament Greek.

Foreword, by William D. Mounce
1. Keep the End in Sight
2. Go to the Ant, You Sluggard
3. Review, Review, Review
4. Use Your Memory Effectively
5. Use Greek Daily
6. Use Resources Wisely
7. Don't Waste Your Breaks
8. How to Get It Back
Sources of Featured Quotations


"Merkle and Plummer have written a charming and immensely practical book on how to retain and even regain knowledge of Greek. I am thrilled to recommend this book, which so effectively instructs and motivates us to continue studying the Greek New Testament."

Thomas R. Schreiner, James Buchanan Harrison Professor of New Testament Interpretation and associate dean, Southern Baptist Theological Seminary

"Clearheaded, relevant, and oh so timely! Merkle and Plummer provide a compelling case for Greek and a surefooted guide to retaining it. Greek for Life has the potential to pull us back from the brink and to silence those who suggest, either explicitly or implicitly, that the rules have changed and that the study of the Greek New Testament is passé. It is not time to give away the game, and Merkle and Plummer show us why and how to persevere."

Jay E. Smith, department chair and professor of New Testament Studies, Dallas Theological Seminary

"Merkle and Plummer have produced a very practical and useful book for beginning and returning students of Greek. Learning and retaining the language can be an intimidating prospect, but they show us that being lifelong students--even when we are convinced that we do not have the time--is important, rewarding, and definitely doable. By providing constructive tips, encouraging words, and examples of how knowing Greek makes a difference in our understanding of the Word, these experienced teachers make their case that every student can learn the language and apply it profitably in life and ministry."

Michelle Lee-Barnewall, associate professor of biblical and theological studies, Talbot School of Theology, Biola University

The Authors

  1. Benjamin L. Merkle
    Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary

    Benjamin L. Merkle

    Benjamin L. Merkle (PhD, Southern Baptist Theological Seminary) is professor of New Testament and Greek at Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary in Wake Forest, North Carolina. He is the coauthor of Greek for Life: Strategies for Learning, Retaining,...

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  2. Robert L. Plummer

    Robert L. Plummer

    Robert L. Plummer (PhD, Southern Baptist Theological Seminary) is professor of New Testament interpretation at Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, Kentucky. He is the coauthor, with Benjamin L. Merkle and Andreas J. Köstenberger, of...

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"This resource is not a grammar or Greek textbook but an extended exhortation about the motivation to keep up one's knowledge [of New Testament Greek], and practical advice on the time management necessary to attend to language study in the midst of a busy life. Woven throughout the work are encouragements in the form of biblical quotations and anecdotes about people who have used various methods to retain or revive their knowledge of Greek."

Donald Senior, CP,

The Bible Today

"Undoubtedly one of the most practically useful and pedagogically engaging resources for students of the Greek New Testament in a number of years. Merkle and Plummer are informative, witty, and knowledgeable--with nearly forty years of combined teaching experience--and readers will benefit immensely as they engage the helpful tips provided in this volume. . . . One of the most effective aspects of this book, and certainly the most encouraging is how it views New Testament Greek within the overall scope of life and ministry. . . . This is a book that provides both teachers and students something to look forward to engaging, and the spiritual benefit overflows as an added reward. . . . I couldn't recommend it more strongly!"

John Kight,

Sojo Theo blog