(ALATEIA) — Most likely, Jesus spoke Aramaic as his primary language, as it was the common language spoken in the region of Palestine during the 1st century. A Semitic language, it is closely related to Hebrew and remains in use nowadays by Christian and Jewish communities in Iraq, Syria, Iran, Turkey, Armenia, Azerbaijan, and even in Russia. Since it was the language used in everyday conversations, trade, and community interactions in Jesus’ day and age, historians assume that he grew up speaking Aramaic within his family and community.
However, it is also probable that Jesus had some knowledge of Hebrew. Hebrew was the language of religious texts and rituals, and Jesus, being raised in a devout Jewish family, would have been familiar with Hebrew Scriptures and participated in Hebrew religious practices.
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Furthermore, due to the Roman occupation of the region, it is plausible that Jesus had some exposure to Greek. Greek was the lingua franca of the Eastern Mediterranean and was commonly used for commercial and administrative purposes. The influence of Greek culture and language during that time means that Jesus and his disciples would have met Greek speakers – and it is conceivable that they themselves had some ability to communicate in Greek. The Gospels, in fact, are all written in Greek.
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