A SYNTAX GUIDE FOR READERS OF THE GREEK NEW TESTAMENT by Charles Lee Irons [Grand Rapids MI, Kregel Academic, 2016] 629 pages.
This is a syntax guide, not one consisting of a manuscript variants. It does not deal with variants, although a few significant ones are pointed out. He generally accepts the critical text—the Nestle-Aland Novum Testamentum Graece—as written. Facts about this guide:
1. Its purpose is to providing brief explanations and syntactical and translation features of the text.
2. The notes are brief and concise and in some cases limited.
3. It is not written to compete with or replace larger works on the subject.
4. It is designed to encourage the reading of the Greek text.
5. The translation is from taken from the modern translations, not the King James Version. A weakness I believe.
6. It endeavors to show various ways the Greek text, especially particles and preposition can be taken.
7. He admits that he uses at times his own terms for the usual ones (p. 10).
8. A helpful index is included at the end, to show where certain parts of speech are used in the text (i.e. accusative, etc).
9. He refers to additional resources in some text.
In using it with the Greek text, first I must acknowledge that the critical text is not my first choice of the Greek texts (although I used it at times). In going though John here are some personal observations:
· It generally was helpful as a guide. But is more of a quick reference.
· It was too concise at times with no resources given for those who want more explanation of the options (cf. Jn 1:3). Although He does give options without comment. Which is normally the case.
· Those verses in which additional information is pointed to are older works, omitting the newer ones [i.e. Mounce].
· However, it does touch on the key issue of syntax with various degrees of help.
Much of what I found is already available in other works and/or a good lexicon. While this work may be helpful to the beginning Greek student, it fails to be ready helpful or meet the needs of the more advance student or Pastor. At times, it is difficult to understand. If you have Wallace, Mounce, or even good exegetical commentaries, I would past on this volume. In my opinion it is not needed, nor does it fully meet it purpose.
I was given a review copy by the publisher Kregel Academic in exchange for a fair and honest review.