According to David Alan Black, people who teach or write about Greek grammar tend to treat the subject as though it were a green vegetable: "You may not like grammar, but it's good for you." It's Still Greek to Me offers an alternative approach.
"I have tried to organize the book in a manner geared to the way people actually use the language, and I have done my utmost to make this book not only accurate but easy to understand and enjoyable to read," Black explains. "I have tried, in short, to produce a true user's guide to New Testament Greek for the twenty-first century. The only prerequisites on your part are a basic knowledge of Greek--and a healthy sense of humor."
Like other intermediate grammars, It's Still Greek to Me provides a comprehensive survey of Greek syntax with chapters devoted to the nuances of Greek nouns, verbs, and clauses. Unlike other grammars, this one also takes students on a brief refresher tour of English grammar.
It's Still Greek to Me is intended primarily for those who have finished one year of instruction in Greek and is thus best suited for second-year Greek classes or seminary exegesis courses. Its thirteen chapters can easily be covered in a one-semester course, with ample time for review and testing. Each chapter concludes with practice exercises and key terms for review.
Throughout my years of teaching intermediate Greek grammar, I have used a variety of textbooks, none entirely satisfactory. In our age of widespread linguistic illiteracy, what is needed is a relatively short, succinct grammar with clear explanations and without unnecessary multiplication of categories. The text should probably review comparable basics of English grammar and regularly use abundant New Testament examples to 'hype' the relevance of each topic. If it is self-effacing with a fun sense of humor, so much the better. David Black has done all of this! I will adopt the book as a required text for my second-year Greek students immediately.
David Black's It's Still Greek to Me takes the mystery out of the syntax of the Greek New Testament. It is clearly written and cleanly presented and includes a helpful discussion of the basics of English grammar, ignorance of which often gets in the way of learning New Testament Greek. For those seeking to learn Greek or teaching it at a basic level, I can guarantee that Greek won't still be Greek to you after using this book!
David Black is clearly a master teacher. His work is practical and easy to understand. The author is conversant with the latest research on Greek grammar. Students will rejoice to find a grammar that is both comprehensible and accurate.
Out of many attempts to make Greek grammar clear and interesting (even entertaining!), David Black's book, It's Still Greek to Me, is probably the most successful. Although the author does not break from the traditional approach, there is a freshness to the presentation that will encourage disheartened students. This guide should prove especially appealing to ministers who need a refresher course.