Learning to Read Greek in Africa

Dear Friends of Christ’s Mission,

This summer, I will be going to Gambella, Ethiopia to teach New Testament Greek to 30 students at Trinity Lutheran Seminary. Trinity is the seminary for the Lutheran Church of South Sudan. It is just across the border from South Sudan because of the Civil War that started in December 2013 and lasted until recent peace endeavors. The students at the seminary are excited about ministry and sharing the Gospel. However, neither the students, Trinity Lutheran Seminary, or the Lutheran Church of South Sudan, have the funds so that each student may have a textbook and a workbook for this summer’s course in New Testament Greek. The books each student needs are:

  1. David Alan Black, Learn to Read New Testament Greek, Third Edition. Nashville, Tennessee: B & H Academic, 2009. Cost for each textbook is $20.10.

  2. Benn Gutierrez & Cara L. Murphy, Learn to Read New Testament Greek Workbook. Nashville, Tennessee: B & H Academic, 2009. Cost for the workbook is $20.93.

This means that we must come up with a total of $1,230.90 in order to have textbooks for 30 students at Trinity Lutheran Seminary in Gambella, Ethiopia. Without these textbooks and workbooks, learning to read New Testament Greek will be nearly impossible for them.

We need your prayers that God will provide the money for us to purchase these books. And, we certainly invite anyone to help us to obtain these textbooks for these needy students. The purchasing of these book will make it possible for these South Sudanese students to sit in on intensive Greek classes that I will be teaching the last week of June and the first 3 full weeks of July. As the Institute of Lutheran Theology’s Dean of Educational Ministries, and one of the school’s instructors, I will be traveling to Gambella in order to help Trinity Lutheran Seminary students fulfill their requirement for New Testament Greek. Since the original language of the New Testament is Greek, both my goal and Trinity’s goal, is to help the students so they may study the New Testament in its original language and thus become better informed preachers and teachers of God’s Word. It was Martin Luther who wrote the following concerning knowledge of the Biblical languages:

"And let us be sure of this: we will not long preserve the gospel without the languages. The languages are the sheath in which this word of the Spirit [Eph. 6:17] is contained; they are the casket in which this jewel is enshrined; they are the vessel in which this wine is held; they are the larder in which this food is stored." (LW 45, p. 360)

Greek Textbooks and Workbooks for Trinity Lutheran Seminary students might become a project of one or more congregations, or of an individual who believes God is calling him or her to help in this area. Checks can be made out to: “Institute of Lutheran Theology.” In the memo, put “TLS Students Greek books” and mail to: Institute of Lutheran Theology, 910 4th Street, Brookings, South Dakota, 57006.

The textbooks and workbooks are simply part of ILT’s commitment to Mission Education around the world. ILT will be sending two of its staff on this trip. The Rev. Dr. Brad Miller, my Assistant Dean of Education for International Ministries, will be with me for 2 weeks. On the other hand, I will be in Gambella for some 4 weeks teaching. Airline tickets to Gambella run $2,000 a piece. Total for food and lodging for two people runs $4,500. You can see that a trip like this is a major undertaking, but it is part of ILT’s commitment to good, solid, Biblical, Lutheran theological education, not only in North America, but around the world. And, since ILT, as an independent seminary, does not receive denominational financial support, we are praying for those who believe God is calling them to help us financially accomplish our educational ministries in Gambella, Ethiopia, as well as in other countries. Any questions may be addressed to me at dmorton@ilt.org and/or (605) 691-4576.

For Christ and His Gospel,

Rev. Douglas V. Morton Dean of Educational Ministries Institute of Lutheran Theology Brookings, SD 57006

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