Biblical Greek - Lesson 8


In this lesson on prepositions in Biblical Greek, you will learn about the importance of prepositions, the different categories they fall into, and their various meanings. As you delve deeper into the topic, you'll gain a better understanding of how prepositions function within the Greek language and how they can be used to modify verbs, nouns, and adjectives. By grasping the nuances of prepositions, you'll be better equipped to study and interpret the New Testament in its original language.

Bill Mounce
Biblical Greek
Lesson 8
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I. Introduction to Prepositions

A. Definition

B. Importance in Biblical Greek

II. Categories of Prepositions

A. Spatial

B. Temporal

C. Causal

III. Key Prepositions and Their Meanings

A. Spatial Prepositions

1. ἐν (en)

2. εἰς (eis)

3. ἐκ (ek)

B. Temporal Prepositions

1. μετά (meta)

2. πρὸ (pro)

3. ἕως (heōs)

C. Causal Prepositions

1. διά (dia)

2. χάριν (charin)

3. ἀντί (anti)

IV. Prepositional Phrases and Their Functions

A. Modification of Verbs

B. Modification of Nouns

C. Modification of Adjectives

  • Bill Mounce invites you to join this course on Biblical Greek and learn the language that he believes is not as hard as people make it out to be, and assures that his lectures will hit just the high points of Greek and that there are resources available on his website for deeper understanding.
  • You will gain knowledge and insight into the fundamentals of biblical Greek, including the alphabet and pronunciation, nouns and adjectives, pronouns and verbs, and the importance of further study. You will learn about the declension of nouns and the conjugation of verbs in different tenses, such as the present, imperfect, future, and aorist. This lesson provides a comprehensive overview of the basics of biblical Greek, making it accessible to beginners who are just starting to learn.
  • In the Learning Greek lesson, you will tackle memorization, learn about tools to assist you, understand the importance of exercises, and discover the significance of time, consistency, and discipline to enhance your Greek language skills and develop a closer connection with Jesus.
  • In this lesson, you learn the Greek alphabet and its pronunciation, discovering similarities to the English alphabet and mastering special pronunciation rules like gamma nasal, vowels, diphthongs, iota subscript, diuresis, and breathing marks, crucial for Greek language study.
  • You will gain insight into the importance of punctuation and syllabification in Greek, which will help you better understand the meaning and pronunciation of Greek texts.
  • Through this lesson, you will develop a solid foundation in English nouns, their types, functions in sentences, and practical tips for mastery.
  • In this lesson, you grasp the significance of nominative and accusative definite articles in Biblical Greek, exploring their roles in identifying subjects and direct objects, and applying the definite article in context.
  • This lesson equips you with the knowledge to identify and translate the genitive and dative cases in biblical Greek, enhancing your understanding and interpretation of biblical texts.
  • Gain insight into the importance of prepositions in Biblical Greek, explore their different categories and meanings, and learn how they modify verbs, nouns, and adjectives to enhance your understanding of the New Testament's original language.
  • In this lesson, you will learn about adjectives in Biblical Greek, their declension, comparison, and their crucial role in syntax, semantics, interpretation, and translation of Biblical texts.
  • By studying the third declension in Biblical Greek, you gain insight into noun and adjective formations, enhancing your ability to analyze and interpret New Testament texts.
  • You gain knowledge of first and second person personal pronouns in Biblical Greek, learning their forms, usage, and application in translating and interpreting New Testament texts.
  • You will gain a comprehensive understanding of Greek pronouns, focusing on forms and genders, and learn to apply this knowledge to accurately interpret biblical texts.
  • By studying this lesson, you acquire a thorough understanding of demonstrative pronouns and adjectives in Biblical Greek, their forms, syntax, and proper application in New Testament passages.
  • This lesson equips you to comprehend relative pronouns in Biblical Greek and their role in connecting ideas and forming dependent clauses.
  • In this lesson, you gain an in-depth understanding of verbs in Biblical Greek, learning about tenses, voices, and moods, and how to apply this knowledge in biblical exegesis.
  • Master the present active indicative in Biblical Greek to understand the language's structure, form regular and irregular verbs, and accurately translate and interpret the text.
  • In this lesson, you gain insight into contract verbs in Biblical Greek, learning to identify and parse them, enabling accurate translation and interpretation of the New Testament texts.
  • This lesson provides a deep understanding of the present middle-passive indicative verb forms in Biblical Greek, including their formation, usage, and tips for accurate translation.
  • This lesson provides you with a comprehensive understanding of the future active and middle indicative verb forms in Biblical Greek, equipping you with translation techniques and practice exercises to enhance your skillset.
  • Through this lesson, you acquire knowledge of verbal roots and future forms in Biblical Greek, enabling better interpretation of the New Testament by recognizing regular and irregular patterns.
  • This lesson teaches you how to understand and use the imperfect indicative in biblical Greek, offering insights into verb conjugations, context, and translation accuracy.
  • You will gain expertise in Second Aorist Active and Middle Indicative forms in Biblical Greek, their formation, usage, and importance in biblical interpretation.
  • This lesson equips you with knowledge of the First Aorist Active and Middle Indicative in Biblical Greek, covering formation, parsing, and translation techniques while providing examples from the New Testament.
  • By studying this lesson, you learn to identify and translate Aorist and Future Passive Indicative verb forms in Biblical Greek, enabling accurate exegesis and interpretation of the New Testament.
  • In this lesson, you acquire knowledge on forming, conjugating, and translating perfect indicative verbs in biblical Greek, with a focus on understanding context and handling irregular verb forms.
  • Through this lesson, you learn about Greek participles, their types, and translation techniques, enhancing your ability to analyze and understand the New Testament texts.
  • This lesson teaches you to identify, translate, and interpret present continuous adverbial participles in Biblical Greek, enhancing your understanding of New Testament exegesis.
  • Gain insights into aorist undefined adverbial participles, their types, and translation techniques to improve your understanding of the Greek text and biblical exegesis.
  • Through this lesson, you master the intricacies of adjectival participles in biblical Greek, including their forms, translation, and syntax, ultimately enhancing your ability to analyze and translate biblical texts.
  • This lesson teaches you the intricacies of perfect participles and genitive absolutes in biblical Greek, enabling you to accurately translate and understand complex grammatical structures.
  • Gain insight into the subjunctive mood in Biblical Greek, understanding its formation, functions, and importance for interpreting the New Testament's nuanced meanings.
  • Through this lesson, you learn to recognize and understand the various roles and functions of infinitives in Biblical Greek, ultimately enhancing your ability to study the biblical text.
  • In this lesson, you learn about the imperative mood in Biblical Greek, its forms and uses, negation, and the subjunctive as an alternative for expressing commands and requests.
  • In this lesson, you learn to understand and apply the imperative mood in Biblical Greek, including its formation, nuances, and its use in exegesis.
  • In this lesson, you gain a deeper understanding of non-indicative forms and conditional sentences, learning to differentiate between subjunctive, imperative, infinitive, and participle forms, as well as first, second, and third class conditional sentences, while expanding your vocabulary.
  • Gain insights into Biblical Greek constructs, conditional sentences, Greek particles, and techniques for parsing and translating complex passages, enhancing your ability to interpret the New Testament.

These lectures will take you through the main points of each chapter in Bill Mounce's Basics of Biblical Greek (3rd edition). These Summary Lectures are also available at billmounce.com, along with other free resources for learning biblical Greek. [The first lecture was originally given in the course Dr. Mounce was teaching at Gordon-Conwell seminary. The syllabus he mentions was for that group of students and is not available.]


BillMounce.com also sells video lectures by Bill Mounce that cover every point in the grammar.

Recommended Books

Basics of Biblical Greek Grammar 3rd (third) Edition

Basics of Biblical Greek Grammar 3rd (third) Edition

William D. Mounce's "Basics of Biblical Greek Grammar" and its companion tool "Basics of Biblical Greek Workbook" are the best-selling and most widely accepted textbooks for learning New Testament Greek.
Basics of Biblical Greek Grammar 3rd (third) Edition

Dr. Bill Mounce
Biblical Greek
Lesson Transcript

[00:00:01] Well, welcome to Chapter eight, Chapter on prepositions and a few other odds and ends we need to cover. What's a preposition? Well, a preposition is a word that indicates the relationship between two things. So all those little words, or at least some of those the book is under the table. Her feet are on the chair. The ball went over his head. John came with his disciples. Jesus came after John. All the words in red are prepositions. When you have a preposition, it's important to understand two terms connected with it in a sentence. The book is under the table. Under is the preposition table is called The object of the preposition. And then the entire phrase the preposition, its object in any modifiers is called the prepositional phrase. The nice thing about prepositions is that they're not inflected. They changed their form for other reasons, but there's no inflection to learn. So that makes them easy. The thing that makes prepositions a little more difficult is that there's a certain relationship that exists between a preposition and an object. And if you can understand it conceptually, they're not that big of a deal. But you need to understand there's an additional thing you have to look at when you come to a preposition. The meaning of a preposition depends upon the case of its object. In other words, when you hit a preposition, you generally have to stop. Go find this object which comes right after it in almost every case and look at its case and then come back and translate the preposition. There are some prepositions that have an object. It's always in the same case. For example, the preposition n epsilon nu always is followed by an object in the dative case. And when you hit those kind of prepositions, you don't have to go look at the case of its object because, you know, it's always going to be dative.

[00:02:12] Those are easy. There are some prepositions whose objects will be in one of two cases, and there are even some prepositions whose objects will be in one of three cases. So, for example, let's say you hit the preposition matar and you stop and you go and you look at its object. If its object is in the genitive case, then you come back and you will translate matar as with. But when you hit Matar and you go look at the case of an object and it's accusative, then you come back and you translate the preposition after. Although I hold most of the verbal grammar to Chapter 15. Well, we're going to learn a little bit more about verbs here. Verbs have person and number. The number is the easy part. Verbs are either singular or plural. If the subject is singular, it'll have a singular ending. If the subject is plural, the verb will have a plural ending. But there's a thing called person, and first person is defined as the person speaking, which in the singular is in English is I or me. In the plural first person is. We. Second person is the person being spoken to. So on the singular, the second person pronoun is. You and the second person plural pronoun is. Yeah. All right. Yeah, it's you. And except in the south, you don't differentiate in English between singular and plural of the second person. Yours is a great expression. And then third person is everything else. So verbs indicate person and they indicate number and they indicate them by the ending that's placed on the end of the word. Now, here's why this is so important. A verb agrees with its subject in person and number. In other words, if the subject of a sentence is AI, then you'll have a first person singular form of the verb.

[00:04:44] If the subject is you plural, then you'll have a second person plural ending on the verb. And if it's anything else, if it's rock, vote. He she or it they. Anything else. Then the verb will have a third person form. Now what we saw in chapter six is that because the verb agrees with that subject, it's going to be the same person in the same number. You don't often have to have an express subject, and so if there is nothing in the nominative, you can assume the subject from the verb and supply it. So what I'm trying to do today is to go a little further and say not only is the subject assumed in the verb, but that there's always going to be agreement between the form of the verb and its subject. So that's why on your normal paradigm, you have six forms for a word. Amy means I am. A with a smooth breathing and a circumflex. That's important means you are. And sd or tin the news in parentheses. Because sometimes it's there, sometimes it's not. Doesn't matter. Same word SD or Astin means he or she or it is you move into the plural. S men is we are S2 is y'all are or you are and a C or a sin. Again, the new is optional means they are. Other than having, you know, the form of Amy and the concept behind it. There's one other thing that's really important to learn about the verb. Amy Now, this is a characteristic of Amy. It's not a characteristic of most verbs. If you have a normal verb. What follows the verb is this direct object that which receives the action of the verb, and the direct object is put in the accusative case.

[00:06:53] Right? Amy. Because of what it means, doesn't take a direct object. The word that follows a me is telling you something about its subject. The Bible is big. Big is not a direct object. In grammarians term, it's predicating something about the subject. The Bible is big in a sense. The verb is or Amy kind of puts in equal sign between two parts. Because of the meaning of Amy. Amy is never followed by a direct object in the accusative. It's always followed by a predicate nominative, which means that the word that follows it is going to be in the nominative case. It will not be in the accusative case. So in the sentence they asked and curious. They asked Is nominative curious? Is nominative. And it means God is Lord. Two more things. Grammatically, a dependent clause is a clause that is dependent upon a main verb. In other words, a dependent clause cannot stand on its own. It's not a complete sentence. So if you have. In order to study. That can't be a sentence, can it? It's not a subject and a main verb, so it's a dependent clause. So you have to have something else, like I'm going to the library in order to study. Okay, So a dependent clause is a clause is a group of words that contain of thought, but don't. And this is the important part. They don't contain the main verb and the main subject. In other words, as you're translating and as you're trying to find the main verb in its subject, as soon as you hit hottie or you hit dinner or you hit a preposition, you know that the phrase that's introduced by those words cannot contain the main verb in the main subject. And so what you need to do is define the end of the phrase.

[00:09:10] And then if you haven't found the verb by then, maybe it's going to come after it. But in the phrase itself, you can't have the main verb and the main subject. And I have good news for you. You now know one out of every other word in the New Testament. Now this this rate is going to drop pretty quickly. But now if you open up your Greek Bible, you know every other word in it. Pretty cool, huh?