One of the joys (!) of doing a PhD in NT is learning German. Thankfully in this Internet age there are a number of helps available. The danger, of course, is that you can rely too much on on-line dictionaries. However, they do make life a lot easier.
I use on-line dictionaries all the time, probably in this order:
Up until recently I had been skeptical about on-line translation sites, mainly because I had only used Yahoo's Babelfish. However, recently I have been using Google Translate and have been very impressed. As a comparison, here is a German phrase I was looking at this morning: 'Setzen wir einmal einen Augenblick voraus'. Babelfish renders it: 'We presuppose once one instant' which is a word for word rendering and is next to useless. However, Google produces: 'Let's assume for a moment'. Bingo! Google gets the idiom and provides a good translation. Now, it is not always so good but I am finding that often it is.