Friday, December 14, 2012

How knowing Hebrew can be a help...

In 2 Kgs 6:11, ֶשׁ is placed in the mouth of an Aramean king, even though ֶשׁ is not used in Aramaic. In Jonah, ֶשׁ is placed once in the mouth of the sailors (when they speak among themselves), once in Jonah’s mouth (when he addresses the sailors), and once in God’s mouth. The use of ֶשׁ in God’s mouth alongside an immediately preceding רשׁא suggests that ֶשׁ is used for rhetorical effect: to support one of the author’s theological points, that YHWH is the God of non-Israelites as well as Israelites. Holmstedt Diachrony in Biblical Hebrew, page 118, footnote 28

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