I’ve seen others post on their blogs about seizing that often small amount of time between lying down for bed and actually falling asleep. Talk about redeeming the time! I’ve often lain in bed at night willing to God that I could read with my eyes closed, after Emily’s told me to go to sleep and my eyes are still struggling like Atlas to uphold their lids. I eventually give in–there comes a point where you have to. Unfortunately at that point your mind is still going and you feel that if you had the energy (or, in my case, God had granted the miracle that you could read with your eyes closed [however that might work out]), you could still be doing something productive.
Well, this post isn’t meant to be primarily about sleep, productivity, eyes that read while closed, or redeeming the time, but about a website I discovered this weekend that made me so happy I could have planted a tree. It’s called GreekLatinAudio.com, an “internet New Testament recording project. This web site offers free MP3 audio-files of high-quality recorded readings of the New Testament in fluid koine Greek and vulgate Latin.”
Friday night, as I lay me down to sleep, I downloaded John’s gospel in Greek and Latin and slapped them onto my MP3 player (quickly adding in the omitted ID3 tags). Loving both, I didn’t know which to listen to first. Greek it was. A rather gruff sounding man rolls through it. It sure beats me trying to read out loud to myself for this man flawlessly, naturally, and mellifluously brings the text alive. Sometimes I can’t quite pick up all the phonemes (the little pieces of sound that carry the meaning) and the text seems to run together just as it would be trying to listen to a radio broadcast in a language with which you’re unfamiliar. (His pronunciation is a little different than mine. I don’t believe he uses what’s known as the Erasmian pronunciation; I’m not quite sure though. His omicron is different.)
Nonetheless, the recordings done in a quality, listen-to-able manner, bring with them a new appreciation for both Koine Greek and the original autographs. Is this what it would have been like being with the church at Ephesus after receiving a letter from Paul, hearing it read aloud to the congregation? I like to imagine it so and that my hearing it read aloud links to me them and the original autograph somehow.
Also, I never noticed how poetic John chapter one sounds. It’s beautiful! Both the content and the form! Each short phrase is like the stroke of a brush painting a vibrant picture of Jesus ho logos. What a gift to the church!
The site has completed 25/27 books of the New Testament in both Greek and Latin with 2 Corinthians and John in progress (chapters 1-6 completed). Also, Genesis 1-25 and Jonah are available in Hebrew. Here’s a link into the download directory for the Greek, Latin, and Hebrew. This site may be old news for you–shame on you for not telling me if that’s the case! I’m hoping that these recording will aid memorization of the Greek text.
Now, you can read, like me, with your eyes closed.