Word Pictures in the New Testament


The late Dr. A. T. Roberston’s scholarship is widely recognized and many have labeled him as the greatest grammarian of the New Testament of the 20th century. He was the prized student of Dr. John Albert Broaddus, Professor of Greek at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, Louisville, Kentucky. Robertson became Broadus’ teaching aide (and son-in-law) and later was elected to the faculty as Professor of New Testament Interpretation in 1888, serving that capacity until his death in 1934. His magnum opus, A Grammar of the Greek New Testament in the Light of Historical Research (New York: George H. Doran, 1914) is arguably the best Grammar of Koine Greek ever written.

In this six volume set, Robertson allows the reader to benefit from his understanding of Koine metaphors and syntax as he carefully explains selected word pictures of the New Testament. If you are a serious student of the New Testament or are interested in the meaning of word pictures used in the New Testament, this set is a ‘must have’ in your library.

Some have unfairly characterized Robertson as biased and doctrinally flawed – however this set is not primarily a commentary (exegetical or expository) on the text but an insight into New Testament forms and idioms. Consequently, many passages are dealt with in depth while others pass with little or no examination. There is no attempt to order the text chronologically, though the preface to each book or letter contains information and background about the text. Robertson acknowledges that his remarks at times are lexical, at others exegetical, still others archaeological, and some grammatical. But again, the focus is on the word pictures, not the complete text.

A prior knowledge of Koine Greek is not necessary but helpful, particularly to grasp the force and weight of certain passages (those containing the intensive use of autoj, for example). For those who know Koine, as Dr. Robertson suggests, you’ll want to keep your Greek New Testament open as you read. For those who don’t know Koine, skip over the transliterated Greek and get to Dr. Robertson’s explanations about the text. — Wes Center

Informational Source: Word Pictures in the New Testament