Preparing Academically for Germany
December 23, 2011
As I’ve mentioned recently, my family is preparing for a move to Germany. As you’ve probably also noticed, I’m pretty excited and will have a lot to say about the process. Let me share with you what I am doing to help prepare myself for the academic studies in Munich:
- Between now and May/June when we hope, Lord willing, to move, I am focusing on honing my language skills. I am trying to read at least 10 verses a day from the Hebrew Old Testament. I refer primarily to Keil and Delitzsch for issues encountered in the Hebrew. I’m also practicing my Latin. Daily reading in the Vulgate is the bare minimum, but I’m also trying to work through a classical grammar.
- My major focus when it comes to language preparation is Greek and German. I’m balancing my time between these since the bulk of my work in Munich will relate to these languages. For Greek I am just about to complete my first reading of the Greek NT. I am also working through a classical grammar that includes translations from English to Greek. When it comes to German, I recently felt that I had hit a wall and was making little progress. Motivation had bottomed out. All of this changed when I was given a few new German magazines and the newest edition of Deutsch Perfekt. I’m finding the Zeitschrift entitled Deutsch Perfekt to be greatly helpful, since it offers contemporary readings on a host of topics and themes, with different levels of difficulty, and with reading helps on hard words. Now I’m finding it hard to put the German down and pick up the Greek.
- There are a couple of things I would like to read between now and Germany. Mostly I would like to read in the area of NT backgrounds: things such as Josephus, Philo, Apostolic Fathers, maybe some Apocrypha, a rhetorical handbook, Homer, and probably Dictionary of NT Background.
- In order to make time for these languages and readings, I am not aiming to try to get much published in the next few months. As of now I am only working on one book review (Letters to the Church: A Survey of Hebrews and the General Epistles by K. Jobes for Criswell Theological Review). I’m also planning on turning down an opportunity to write another article for the Lexham Bible Dictionary since this will take away time from my other pursuits.
In some upcoming posts, I hope to share with you how I’m preparing spiritually for Germany, and also how we as a family are preparing.