ΑΓΑΠΗΣΕΙΣ is Greek for ‘you will love’. This blog is devoted to the intersection of biblical exegesis, linguistics, and translation. It is offered as a spiritual discipline of the mind in order to love God and love others.

ΑΓΑΠΗΣΕΙΣ comes from the double love command in Mark 12.30-31 and summarizes what this blog is about:

  1. knowing the word
  2. in order to love God
  3. and love others

In response to the question, “What is the greatest commandment?” Jesus said…

“Hear, oh Israel, the Lord our God is one Lord. You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind, and with all your strength. The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.”

This blog is devoted to the interpretation of scripture in order to love God and others.

Some personal facts…

  • My wife and I have five young children who also love God
  • I have been a translation advisor in Papua New Guinea since 2002. I work with 11 language groups from three unrelated language families. They have translated Jonah, Ruth, Genesis 1-11, Matthew 1-2, and Luke. They’ve drafted Acts this last year.
  • I have a B.A. from Houghton College (1996), where I studied Bible, Linguistics, Intercultural Relations, and Greek.
  • I have an M.A. from Wheaton College Graduate School (2002), where I majored in Interdisciplinary Studies. I did that so I could have lots of electives to focus on Greek exegesis before they had the current exegesis program. My thesis focused on the use of the Old Testament in the New Testament with special attention on more implicit allusions in the Letter of James.
  • I have an M.A. from The Graduate Institute of Applied Linguistics (2010) in Applied Linguistics. My thesis applies cognitive semantics and discourse grammar to the question of global coherence in the Letter of James.

My primary interests to be included in this blog are…

  • biblical exegesis
  • biblical theology
  • use of OT in the NT
  • Greek language
  • Hebrew language
  • Bible translation
  • linguistics
  • discourse analysis
  • cognitive semantics
  • the Letter of James
  • textual criticism
  • teaching
  • preaching

I want to pursue these interests in such a way that I love God with all of who I am and also love others more than myself.

10 Responses to “About ΑΓΑΠΗΣΕΙΣ”

  1. New Blog to the Sidebar « εν εφέσω: Thoughts and Meditations Says:

    […] ΑΓΑΠΗΣΕΙΣ is written by an anonymous linguist/Bible scholar (student?) in Papua New Guinea. His focus is on James. There’s a lot of Greek, which I like and he reads on many of the same topics I do. I like to see that others have an interest in Textual Criticism. I won’t say more than that. Go read for yourself. […]

  2. Anthony Says:

    Where is the RSS feed for this blog? I would like to add it to my reader.

  3. bzephyr Says:

    Hey Anthony, thanks for bringing that up so I could fix it.

  4. Wycliffe UK blog » Blog Archive » Sharp liver stomachs Says:

    […] at ΑΓΑΠΗΣΕΙΣ is posting a series of stories about Bible translation checking in Papua New Guinea. Getting the […]

  5. Matina Montes Says:

    I found you by Googling Memorial Offering. I appreciated your insight and it helped me understand God’s nature and love…again.
    I love the story of Cornelius as well. A man with pure motives and no religious agenda…open to the Gospel message. I have to guard my heart from being like Peter and missing people open to the message because of self-righteousness and pride. The longer I live as a disciple of Jesus the more I have to come before God and be reminded who got me this far and to begin with. In my core nature I am still a sinner. Every encounter I have with a new person I want to graciously share the gospel message and my life without preconceived notions or judgement.
    I have a question about the Greek and pronunciation.
    I have Greek ancestry and learned to speak, read and write modern Greek. Recently I sat through a class on Koine (sp?) Greek. Pronunciations confused me…the coupled vowels dipthongs are what through me off. Do you have a suggested reference or text book I can go to to more deeply understand Koine pronunciation and language?
    Thanks for devoting your life to this purpose.
    Matina Montes

    • bzephyr Says:

      Matina, thank you for your kind comments. I pray that God continues to lift you up as you follow Jesus in humility and joy and that his Spirit gives you all wisdom for a life that grows in holiness and service to him and to others.

      Regarding Greek pronunciation, I would say that you as a modern Greek speaker are in a far better position with your own pronunciation than trying to fit in with the contrived Erasmian pronunciation that is usually used in most [American] seminaries. The Erasmian pronunciation sometimes has the supposed benefit of making every vowel and diphthong have a different pronunciation, but following that pronunciation can only be a hindrance when compared with the extreme benefit of being able to grow in knowledge of the language with real live speakers and with understanding exegetical issues related to pronunciation/spelling mistakes.

      There is a stream of recent good scholarship that argues that modern Greek pronunciation follows a trajectory from Koine Greek such that modern pronunciation is much closer to Koine pronunciation than previously assumed. This is a specialty of Professor Chrys Caragounis, and also Randall Buth at the Biblical Language Center. Hope that’s helpful.

  6. Matina Montes Says:

    Thanks so much for your response. I will dig deeper into what these two gentlemen have to share about their findings.

    Love In Chirst,
    Matina Montes

  7. Leon Schauf Says:

    glad to be one of the visitants on this amazing website : D.

  8. Shweta Says:

    Thanks for visiting my blog! Appreciate it. :)

    All the best,

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