Jerome: To A Linguistic Pretender

jerome11You know enough Latin and Greek to make the Greek think you a Latin scholar and the Latin a Greek.  – St Jerome

I read that and thought right off of the folk who cite Strong’s concordance in an attempt to persuade others of their linguistic skills.  They ‘know’ enough Hebrew and Greek to make the person who knows neither think they are a scholar of both.

I love Jerome.  A straight-talker if ever there were one.

About Jim

I am a Pastor, and Lecturer in Church History and Biblical Studies at Ming Hua Theological College.
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5 Responses to Jerome: To A Linguistic Pretender

  1. Jim: that happens more often than anyone may think and I fault the hearer. What I think it is fraudulent, though, is when the hearer ascribes scholarship to the speaker that the latter doesn’t have, he does not correct the hearer and allow a false impression to remain to earn points with the hearer(s). I often pad on my own back in these occasions to the point that my shoulder is sore because I always say “consulting this or that scholar I believe this word in Greek or Latin to mean this and that…” I catch some people practicing linguistic fraud all the time and it is sad! It is not a shame not to know! I know nothing of brain surgery! It is a shame, however, to pretend a knowledge that one doesn’t have only to impress the gullible and/or the careless!

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    • Jim says:

      agreed. there’s no shame in not knowing things. there are a gazillion things i don’t know. and i don’t care to know. what’s troubling is when people pretend to know bible-stuff when they have no idea. that bothers me, because the bible matters to me.

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  2. My 5 year old grandson saw a few videos of volcanoes on youtube and his mom told him about lava, eruptions, Mt. Saint Helen and Vesuvius. It is cute to hear him repeat these words correctly. It is even more appalling that he now considers himself an expert in “Volcanology.” Often when he is “teaching” me on the subject of volcanoes I think of the guys you call dilettantes and the people who fraudulently ascribe to them a knowledge they don’t have… except that my grandson is 5 years of age!

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  3. I don’t know, but that it is worse to hear some fellow talking history to support his favorite of theological view point, when he has never done the research. Parenthetically, I have seen few, if any, references to the subjunctive of purpose when it comes to dealing with theological issues that are bones of contention.

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