What good reference works on Biblical studies are available online, and what kinds of questions are they good at answering?
Primary source biblical texts and/or critical editions or compilations of these texts.
- Academic Bible (has the BHS, NA28, UBS GNT, LXX/Septuagint, and Vulgate)
- Tanach.us is the authoritative source for the electronic "Unicode/XML Westminster Leningrad Codex" (allows presentation with or without cantillation and vocalization)
- Chabad.org for classic, contemporary, and Chassidic; see also Sefaria.org
- Nestle-Aland 28th Edition Critical Greek New Testament
- Society of Biblical Literature Critical Greek New Testament
- 1904 Greek New Testament — Antoniades edition / Patriarchal text
- Peshitta - Syriac Aramaic New Testament
- Liddell-Scott-Jones Greek-English Lexicon (with corrections from 1996 supplement)
- Lust, Eynikel, and Hauspie’s A Greek-English Lexicon of the Septuagint (Rev.ed.)
- Moulton and Milligan The Vocabulary of the Greek Testament
- Semantic Dictionary of Biblical Hebrew (UBS)
- Brown, Driver, and Briggs A Hebrew and English Lexicon of the Old Testament
- Tyndale Archive of Biblical Studies includes:
- Jastrow's Rabbinic Hebrew & Aramaic Dictionary
- Crum's Coptic Dictionary
- Gesenius' Biblical Hebrew & Aramaic Dictionary
- Payne-Smith's Syriac Dictionary
- Wilson's Englishman's Hebrew Dictionary
- Lane's 8-Volume Arabic Lexicon
- Gesenius’ Hebrew Grammar, ed. and rev. by E. Kautzsch and A.E. Cowley
- Herbert Weir Smyth, A Greek Grammar for Colleges = hyperlinked, searchable text from Perseus (or PDF from Archive.org)
- H. St. John Thackeray, A Grammar of Old Testament Greek according to the Septuagint
- A.T. Robertson, A Grammar of the Greek New Testament in the Light of Historical Research
- Bruce M. Metzger & Bart Ehrman, The Text of New Testament: Its Transmission, Corruption, and Restoration, 4th ed.
- Wilbur N. Pickering, The Identity of the New Testament Text IV
Biblical Studies Tools
In addition to providing translations of texts and supplementary texts, these tools often contain grammatical information (morphology and syntax), as well as semantic (exegetical) resources. Many of these also ofter interlinear or side-by-side English/original text tools.
- Mechon Mamre
- Westminster Leningrad Codex
- TanakhML Project
- Hebrew Books
- Talmudic Books
- NETS Septuagint Translation
- Septuagint.org (+ NT)
- Christian Classics Ethereal Library
- Bible Gateway
- Bible Hub
- Blue Letter Bible
- Bible.org (including the NET translation and notes)
- Bible Study Tools
- Biblia (affiliated with Logos Bible study software)
- BibleArc (four English versions, Hebrew Tanakh and Greek NT [NA27 and SBL] with lexical and grammatical helps)
Precepts International demonstrates how to do a word study on-line
A Note on Most Freely Available Public Domain Greek-English Lexica
"...in 1895, Adolf Deissmann published his Bibelstudien - an innocently titled work that was to revolutionize the study of the NT. In this work (later translated into English under the title Bible Studies) Deissmann showed that the Greek of the NT was not a language invented by the Holy Spirit (Hermann Cremer had called it "Holy Ghost Greek," largely because 10 percent of its vocabulary had no secular parallels). Rather, Deissmann demonstrated that the bulk of NT vocabulary was to be found in the papyri.
The pragmatic effect of Deissmann's work was to render obsolete virtually all lexica and lexical commentaries written before the turn of the century. (Thayer's lexicon, published in 1886, was outdated shortly after it came off the press - yet, ironically, it is still relied on today by many NT students.)"
Daniel B. Wallace. The Basics of New Testament Syntax: An Intermediate Greek Grammar. Zondervan, 2000, p. 21.
Keep in mind that many freely available Greek-English lexica on the Internet are based on Thayer's lexicon and/or Smith's Bible dictionary, especially online lexical resources tied to the Strong's Concordance (the content of which was most recently revised in 1893).
Recommended Greek Lexica
It is generally recognized that the most scholarly Greek-English lexica currently available are (in order):
- A Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament and Other Early Christian Literature (3rd ed.) by Walter Bauer and revised and edited in 2001 by F.W. Danker (published by University Of Chicago Press). Often referred to as BDAG.
- Greek-English Lexicon of the Septuagint, Revised Edition by Johan Lust, Erik Eynikel, and Katrin Hauspie. Published by Hendrickson. This is generally considered an essential go-to for Septuagint studies, as even BDAG does not always sufficiently cover the nuance of words as they appear in this corpus.
- The Greek of the Septuagint: A Supplemental Lexicon by Gary Alan Chamberlain. Published by Hendrickson in 2011. This work was intended as a supplement for BDAG when conducting Septuagint studies. The treatment in BDAG is supplemented when the LXX has additional meanings. New lexical articles are composed when the LXX word is not in BDAG at all.
- A Greek-English Lexicon (9th ed.) with a Revised Supplement by Henry George Liddell and Robert Scott through the 8th edition which was published in 1897. Henry Stuart Jones most recently edited the volume along with Roderick McKenzie. The last edition (9th) of LSJ was published in ten parts between 1925 and 1940. A list of Addenda and Corrigenda to the 1940 edition was published in 1968 and bound with subsequent printings but the revisions were not merged into the main lexicon composed by Liddell and Scott. In 1996, Oxford University Press published the LSJ Supplement with 320 pages of corrections and additions but the main text of the lexicon was not revised. The corrected volume is available online in a couple places and is used by many scholars, but always in consultation with a more recent lexicon such as the BDAG.
These are (obviously) older works of reference, and their value varies depending on the nature of the article and the shifts in that topic since writing. That said, these are still useful provided that caveat is constantly born in mind.
Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible
J. Hastings, ed., A Dictionary of the Bible Dealing with Its Language, Literature, and Contents, Including the Biblical Theology, 4 volumes (Edinburgh: T & T Clark, 1911) -
The International Standard Bible Encyclopedia
J. Orr, gen.ed., The International Standard Bible Encyclopedia, 5 volumes (Chicago: The Howard-Severance Co., 1915) -
- Vol. 1. A to Clemency.
- Vol. 2. Clement to Heresh.
- Vol. 3. Heresy to Naarah.
- Vol. 4. Naarah to Socho.
- Vol. 5. Socket to Zuzim.
Smith's Dictionary of the Bible
H.B. Hackett ed., Dictionary of the Bible: Comprising Its Antiquities, Biography, Geography and Natural History, 4 volumes (Boston: Houghton & Mifflin; 1889) -
- Vol. 1. A to Gennesaret, Land of.
- Vol. 2. Gennesaret, Sea of to Market.
- Vol. 3. Marriage to Regem.
- Vol. 4. Regem-Melech to Zuzims.
These mammoth older reference works also contain relevant material for BH.SE:
Possible NT Uses of Other (some hold Non-Canonical) Works
This blog site page gives a comparative listing of possible NT uses of other works (pseudepigraphal, apocryphal, deutrocanonical, etc.. [whatever labels one may desire to put]).
I recommend looking at more academic sources of both the works cited and the NT for verification, but the above link could be useful as a first step in researching.
Note: I emphasize "possible" because much debate occurs in the scholarly realm about what are or are not valid connections, and I personally consider the majority of such connections to be speculation. The author of the blog holds that:
Regardless, there are clearly parallels between the New Testament and the Deuterocanonicals and the Pseudepigrapha and other works. This is no longer in doubt.
But also questions whether every connection he has listed is really a connection, saying:
It must be admitted that some of the relationships are puzzling; that is, in some instances it is difficult to find any relationship between the two passages. I can only suggest that in some cases, perhaps versification differences are in play, or perhaps a wild edition was used, or perhaps simply a mistake has been made by the contributor of a citation to the list.
Nevertheless, the listing is a good place to start for anyone exploring the issue.
Robert L. Plummer is a professor of New Testament interpretation at Southern Seminary. He has an excellent blog dealing, among other things with hermeneutics.
In addition to his work in hermeneutics he produces "Daily Dose Of Greek" a series of fantastic 2 minute videos teaching Greek by going verse by verse through the scriptures.
There is also a Hebrew version called "Daily Dose of Hebrew".
Bill Mounce's site has free video classes on Hermeneutics by a professor of New Testament.
I've made my musical setting of John 1:1-3 (Textus Receptus version) available.
https://www.blueletterbible.org/search/preSearch.cfm (AWESOME) https://parabible.com/2-Kings/2 (English, Greek and Hebrew available side by side, including the LXX!) http://logeion.uchicago.edu/%CE%BA%CF%84%CE%AF%CF%83%CE%B9%CF%82 (LSJ Lexicon) https://betterbibles.wordpress.com/blogroll/ https://www.youtube.com/user/MrDonPreston (Preterism) https://www.youtube.com/user/EkimRegniw (Mike Winger) https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCvuq5zTiQvMfWl9DNci7DPg (Rightly Dividing/Dispensationalism) https://www.youtube.com/user/Robertbreaker3 (Rightly Dividing/Dispensationalism) http://www.nakedbiblepodcast.com/author/mshmichaelsheisergmail-com/ https://agaphseis.wordpress.com/greek-resources-on-the-web/ https://dailydoseofgreek.com/greek-resources/bdag-1/
What a great day for studying the scriptures!