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Biblical Words and Their Meaning, 2nd ed.

, 1994
ISBN: 9780310514664

Digital Logos Edition

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When first published in 1983, Biblical Words and Their Meaning broke new ground by introducing to students of the Bible the principles of linguistics, in particular, on lexical semantics—that branch that focuses on the meaning of individual words. Moisés Silva’s structural approach provides the interpreter with an important lexical tool for more responsible understanding of the biblical text and more effective use of standard exegetical resources. This revised edition includes a bibliographical essay by Silva, “Recent Developments in Semantics,” and an appendix by Karen H. Jobes, “Distinguishing the Meaning of Greek Verbs in the Semantic Domain for Worship,” which provides the reader with a substantive example of lexical study.

In the Logos edition, this valuable volume is enhanced by amazing functionality. Scripture citations link directly to English translations, and important terms link to dictionaries, encyclopedias, and a wealth of other resources in your digital library. Perform powerful searches to find exactly what you’re looking for. Take the discussion with you using tablet and mobile apps. With Logos Bible Software, the most efficient and comprehensive research tools are in one place, so you get the most out of your study.

Resource Experts
  • Provides a study on linguistic lexical semantics
  • Synthesizes critically the results of scholars in the field of linguistic semantics
  • Includes notes at the end of each chapter that address controversial issues within the text
  • Offers summaries that allow for ease of study and understanding
  • Part One: Historical Semantics
    • Etymology
      • Synchrony and Diachrony
      • Etymological Science
      • Etymology and Exegesis
    • Semantic Change and the Role of the Septuagint
      • General Considerations
      • Septuagint and New Testament
      • Using the Septuagint
    • Semantic Change in the New Testament
      • Classifying Semantic Change
      • Semantic Borrowing
      • The Structural Perspective
  • Part Two: Descriptive Semantics
    • Some Basic Concepts
      • Denotation
      • Structure
      • Style
    • Sense Relations
      • Relations Based on Similarity
      • Relations Based on Oppositeness
      • Componential Analysis
    • Determining Meaning
      • Context
      • Ambiguity
      • Synonymy

Top Highlights

“We have the relatively modest goal of determining the most accurate English equivalents to biblical words, of being able to decide, with as much certainty as possible, what a specific Greek or Hebrew word in a specific context actually means.” (Page 31)

“It follows that our real interest is the significance of Greek or Hebrew in the consciousness of the biblical writers; to put it baldly, ‘historical considerations are irrelevant to the investigation’ of the state of the Koine at the time of Christ.” (Page 38)

“Ironically, however, etymology seems to occupy a more prominent place in the discussion of words whose meaning is already established! Also ironically, the use of etymology by ministers may be directly linked to a lack of genuine familiarity with the biblical languages.” (Page 44)

“A final and fundamental danger is that of confusing the word for the reality.” (Page 26)

“compounds and derivatives may lose their motivation if any of their elements falls into disuse” (Page 49)

  • Title: Biblical Words and Their Meaning: An Introduction to Lexical Semantics
  • Author: Moisés Silva
  • Edition: Revised and Expanded Edition
  • Publisher: Zondervan
  • Print Publication Date: 1994
  • Logos Release Date: 2013
  • Pages: 228
  • Language: English
  • Resources: 1
  • Format: Digital › Logos Research Edition
  • Subjects: Bible › Language, style; Bible › Hermeneutics; Language and languages › Religious aspects
  • ISBNs: 9780310514664, 0310514665
  • Resource Type: Monograph
  • Metadata Last Updated: 2022-09-29T22:04:17Z

Moisés Silva (born September 4, 1945) is a Cuban-born American biblical scholar and translator.


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