Get started by clicking here, which will take you to our Memrise group. If you have a Memrise account, it'll ask if you want to add the course modules. If you don't, create your free Memrise account and then come back and click again through here and add the course.
This course is a compilation of the vocabulary covered in the forty lessons of Hebrew Quest, and is subdivibed into five modules covering eight lessons each. It was created as a labour of love by Chris Flanagan, a Holy Language volunteer. As a tool to help lock all those Hebrew phrases into your long-term memory, it's invaluable.
Have questions or need help getting started? Read on for orientation videos and FAQs!
Could you give me more info on how to get started?
Simple! Just click through here and log in. You will be asked if you wish to join the group. Say "yes" and you’re in! This will instantly add all five modules (eight Hebrew Quest videos/levels per module)
If you don’t have an account, click the green "Sign up" button, then enter a username, email address and password. Click to the box to accept the terms, then click the "Sign up" button. You may need to click the group link again after you sign up. (Note your username is publically visible but your email is not.)
Flashcards bring back bad memories for me. Are we making this fun?
Yes! If you are a subscriber, then for each module you finish you will receive a certificate, suitable for framing - and when you finish the entire course you'll receive a special gift in the mail! We also make monthly announcements going out to tens of thousands of people on our email list and social media congratulating our point leaders, module finishers, and course graduates. Learn more about our graduate program here.
What is Memrise, anyway?
Memrise is a popular on-line flashcard system founded by a former world memory champion. The name is a portmanteau of the words "memorize" (except the founder is British so it’s "memorise") and "meme" - each user can upload a picture for each given ‘card’ that will help them memorize the word/phrase.
Memrise also has things like timed multiple choice assessments and audio tests, which involve selecting the correct word or phrase based on an audio clip (or match an audio clip to a phrase).
Points are obtained by simply answering cards correctly within a given time limit. And there are leaderboards and merit badges awarded to raise engagement.
The basic version is free with no ads; the paid version unlocks functionality such as advanced learning metrics and additional drilling on "problem words". (Tip: if you’re interested in the additional features, wait until you advance to 100,000 points and you should get a coupon for a significant discount.)
There is a fairly robust set of help pages. After logging in you can scroll down to the very bottom for "blog", "forums" and "FAQ & Help" - often if you Google "Memrise" and your question you will find what you’re looking for.
What is Spaced Repetition Sequence?
Memrise uses an algorithm called "spaced repetition sequence" - SRS. After learning a word or phrase, you will be tested a given number of times on a card, then those cards you know are subsequently shown less frequently than the cards you don’t know. Memrise automatically keeps track of incorrect answers and how long it takes you to answer. This makes learning and memorizing much more efficient.
How is this course different from all other Memrise courses?
Our Hebrew Quest modules reinforce concepts from the forty lessons of Hebrew Quest, and in general help you get more out of the course.
In addition, these modules meet a need in the Memrise community for those wishing to fast track getting into the Hebrew Bible text. Most other modules we’ve seen are either single-word vocabulary or are supplements to grammar text books. If there are phrases, these tend to consist of modern Hebrew travel phrases (e.g. "can you direct me to the railway station?", a phrase we’re pretty sure you won’t find in the Bible!) Our modules get you into the Word, without needing to learn grammar or individual Hebrew words out of context.
Instead of exclusively offering a vocabulary list of individual words, the Hebrew Quest modules incorporate multi-word phrases. A verse of the Bible may have 15 words, but we break that up into 3-5 blocks of words. An example would be Genesis 1:1 - instead of learning the seven individual Hebrew words, we break it up like this:
in the beginning created Elohim
(et) the heavens
and (et) the earth
This also has the benefit of learning Hebrew idioms, which may have a different meaning than the literal string of words. For example, you can learn the Hebrew words for "the", "words" and "these" - but the only way you will know that "ha'devarim ha'eleh" does not literally mean in English "the words, the these" is to read them in context and be taught the underlying Hebraism.
Which translation did you use for the Bible passages?
Where an English translation was provided in the Hebrew Quest student manual, we generally used that.
The translation of the other Bible passages comes directly from the lessons; where multiple English meanings could be possible, we tried to include these as space permitted. The goal with the passages was to strike a balance between the literal and the thought English equivalent for the specific phrase; even though this does not necessarily result in a "comfortable" English translation when reading the verse as a whole. The result of this is that sometimes the English can come across as clunky or awkward but that is intentional. The goal is to get us thinking more in Hebrew and less in English.
A Hebrew word can have many different meanings in English; where practical these have been included in the definition.
As there are many different sensitivities around the Tetragrammaton we stuck with "LORD" in all caps.
What’s the deal with Session 14?
The back half of lesson #14 and the first part of video #15 are all about verbs. We counted 164 conjugations of "to kill"!
Izzy himself said "don’t get bogged down by verbs", and went through them very quickly during the sessions. Getting into the text is more important, and there was a risk that including verb conjugation would cause you to lose interest. Therefore, there is no actual content at Session 14; you will see a message pointing you to the additional content if you are interested, or you can just move on to #15.
If this is not the case for you, we encourage you to check out the Memrise course library - there are a few other courses that focus on verbs (although we cannot vouch for the accuracy!)
I use Anki, Quizlet, or another memory/flash card program: do you have options for me?
Memrise is extremely easy to use, has great interactive features, the free version is ad-free and allows us to incorporate custom audio, and the SRS automatically tracks incorrect and delayed responses. Memrise is also a lot of fun with point/badge earning and whatnot. The iOS and Andriod apps are free; while they are not as full-featured as the website, they do the job.
The other flashcard applications may excel over Memrise on one point or another, but as of the date we created the courses, they do not offer this combination of features/functionality. Therefore, Memrise is our preferred application for Hebrew Quest memory work.
With this said, we don’t like to say "no" at Holy Language, so if Memrise is not an option for you, please email Chris at "memrise at holylanguage dot com" (use the standard email format, we have it broken up here to thwart spambots.)
I’m super-excited about the potential for this. What can I do to help?
~Pray! Pray that these courses will draw people closer to Yeshua. Pray that our courses reach folks who we already know are in our target audience (they have to be interested in Hebrew or they wouldn’t be in the catalog looking at Hebrew Courses!) That would include Christians who maybe just got back from their first trip to Israel and are excited about getting to know the Jewish carpenter from Nazereth a little better, Jewish people who don’t yet know Messiah, and anyone at all who might see the courses and want to get involved with the Tribe. Pray also that the hearts of anti-Semites would be softened.
~Consider becoming a financial supporter (or increasing your support) of Holy Language Institute by subscribing or donating. This will help us with some of the costs associated with growing and developing a world class Hebrew learning institute.
~Get an account, add the group and start learning! The order the courses appear in the catalog is entirely based on the number of users - the more user activity we have, the higher up in the ranks we’ll be. And the higher up in the ranks we are, the more likely those people we just finished praying for above will find US when they look for a Hebrew course! Not to mention, the more "mems" we have the more fun it will be. :)
Send comments, corrections, recommendations, or other Holy Language course ideas to Chris at email@example.com.