Eminent Greek Scholar Daniel Wallace of his Greek Grammar Beyond the Basics fame has written an article over at the Parchment and Pen blog discussing the merits (or the lack thereof) of a supposedly wildly popular video claiming to explain, from the Bible, why President Obama is “the” Anti-Christ. Dr. Wallace takes the video apart piece by piece showing the utter falsities of its claims on a solid linguistic basis.
The narrator of the video in discussion makes many ignorant claims such as that Aramaic is the oldest form of Hebrew, but then contradicts himself when he says the Aramaic Jesus spoke is close to the form of Hebrew spoken today. Both of these are false claims. Aramaic may have similarities to Hebrew but it is not a form of Hebrew. Knowing language changes over time, how can he say the Aramaic Jesus spoke 2000 years ago be similar to a language spoken 2000 years later? Then he goes on to put together some pretty poor exegesis and makes lots of lingusitic leapfrogs and does exegetical gymnastics.
He did raise a conteroversial issue, did Jesus speak only Aramaic or did he also speak Koine Greek? This author insists Jesus only spoke Aramaic but I tend to side with Wallace that, of course Jesus spoke Aramaic but it only seems natural, his being a carpenter of sorts (probably specialized in farming tools but did some masonry too) that he would speak some Greek. It was, afterall, the lingua franca of the day. Why would he not?
So, all that to say, his attempt to prove Obama is the AC, from the Bible, is poorly executed. But more importantly, if folks were aware of even basic exegetical method and linguistic principles along with a basic understanding of the biblical languages, this video would not be as wildly popular as it seems to be – it would be ignored or laughed off the exegetical stage.
So, PLEASE study the biblical languages so you won’t keep getting DUPED.
I report, you decide.