I wanted to extend my sincerest thanks to Leslie Paladino at Kregel Publications for furnishing me with a review copy of A New Reader’s Lexicon of the Greek New Testament by Michael H. Burer and Jeffrey E. Miller.
This title caught my eye when I was browsing Kregel’s list of upcoming releases earlier this fall. If you were to take a look at the bookshelves in my office, you’d probably come to the conclusion that I certainly don’t need another lexicon. Chances are you’d be right. Normally, I’d quickly skim the description of a forthcoming lexicon and move on. However, there were two things that piqued my interest. First, I was drawn to the beautiful image of codex 2882 (courtesy of the Center for the Study of New Testament Manuscripts) on the cover. Second, I noticed that the foreword was written by Daniel B. Wallace. Dr. Wallace’s contribution to the study of New Testament Greek in the past few decades is envious and commendable. The fact that he wrote the forward for this new lexicon told me it deserved more than just a cursory glance.
The commendations from various Bible scholars in the front of the book and on the back cover have two common themes. First, the majority of them describe this work as a much needed update and improvement on a similar work by Sakae Kubo published by Zondervan. Second, they are very pleased that the vast majority of the contextual definitions come from BDAG. In the forward, Daniel Wallace touches on the two themes mentioned by the other scholars. He also mentions the importance of the three-fold tagging of word frequency in this volume, noting it will be of great value to the beginning and intermediate Greek student as well as the experienced exegete. Dr. Wallace has great hopes for this new work, which is expressed best in the following quote from the end of the foreword, “What Kubo did for the last generation, Burer and Miller’s NRL will do for the next.”
The student, pastor, and serious layperson will appreciate the layout and features of the entries in this lexicon. Every word, including proper names and place names, that occur fewer than fifty times in the New Testament are defined in context. The word frequency statistics based on the NA27/USB4 Greek New Testament are computer generated. You can see an example of the word frequency tagging layout in this entry for Romans 9:22:
You will also encounter cross references for some entries. See an example below in this entry for Luke 9:60:
As you can see from the examples above, there is a wealth of information in each entry.
Every serious student of New Testament Greek should consider adding this lexicon to their library. Coming in at just under thirty dollars, the reasonable price makes this book accessible to even those with the smallest of book budgets. This book will become a mainstay on my desk and I’m confident it will enhance my study of the Greek New Testament. I agree with Dr. Wallace, that A New Reader’s Lexicon of the Greek New Testament will have a great impact on this next generation of aspiring Greek scholars.
Michael H. Burer is assistant professor of New Testament studies at Dallas Theological Seminary, where he received his Ph.D. He has published a number of scholarly works and contributed as an editor to the New English Translation—Novum Testamentum Graece New Testament.
Jeffrey E. Miller earned his Th.M. from Dallas Theological Seminary and is senior pastor at Trinity Bible Church in Richardson, Texas. He has published both scholarly and popular works.
Buy this book on Amazon: A New Reader’s Lexicon of the Greek New Testament
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