[b-hebrew] authority of holem
kwrandolph at gmail.com
Wed Dec 27 11:05:27 EST 2006
On 12/27/06, Yitzhak Sapir <yitzhaksapir at gmail.com> wrote:
> One should therefore keep in mind that the vowels as we have them
> represent a very late pronunciation of Hebrew, but, unlike Karl would
> have it, represent an authentic reading tradition. That is, just
> because the scribes wrote these vowels at some point in time,
> doesn't mean they made them up.
How many times do I have to repeat myself before you stop claiming
that I claim that the Masoretes "made up the vowels" that they
preserved with their points?
Even you admit in the long paragraph (deleted in this response) that
it is almost certain that those pronunciations were not the same as in
Biblical times. That is all I have ever claimed.
> .... In other words, the notes and
> vowels that they added were not necessarily any less inspired than
> the written text that they passed on. People's point of view on what
> is inspired may differ, and this list is not the place to discuss what is
> or is not inspired, so Karl's viewpoint that "while the original
> consonantal text was inspired by God, the preserved pronunciation is
> not" is just as legitimate as saying it was all inspired or all not
> inspired. But if the question of an authentic reading tradition comes
> up, then there is no problem explaining the different vocalic systems
> for vowels as different points in the development of the tradition.
> Yitzhak Sapir
You are not a Christian, but you should still learn about Christian
theology so that you don't end up looking foolish.
When a Christian talks about the Bible being "inspired" or more fully
"inspired by God", that refers to a theological concept that God
guided the writers of the Bible in such a way that the ideas, even the
very words, rendered God's thoughts without error. But that was
limited to the original autographs, i.e. that which was written by the
person who was "inspired by God".
Copyists were not "inspired" according to the theological definition,
they introduced mistakes. The reason Christians support textual
criticism is that they want to find out as closely as they can what
were the original words written by the Biblical authors. Tradition
introduced more mistakes, so that by the time the Masoretes recorded
the vowels that they heard, they recorded pronunciations that were
wrong as far as meaning is concerned. "Wrong" means that the Masoretic
vowel points at times do not accurately convey the meaning as intended
by the original authors.
Sorry for bringing in theology to this discussion, but as a Biblical
Christian (another theological term) we sometimes mention our beliefs
with the expectation that others understand us. This is the same
expectation that Jewish writers have when they bring up "oral Torah",
"pshat", "darosh" and "sod", and other concepts that are absent in
Christianity, or when the modernists bring up their "documentary
hypothesis" and its various subteachings. We don't have to agree with
all these theological beliefs, just understand them so we can
accurately discuss them. To insist that people agree with us is
proselytism, a practice we agreed to forego in order to discuss
Biblical Hebrew on this list.
Yitzhak, while I consider that your ability to find documents is
almost uncanny, and is way beyond what I am able to do, your
understanding those documents, and even our discussion on this list,
leaves something to be desired. Your paragraph above shows that in
spite of many times I have explained myself, you still misunderstand
and misrepresent what I say, and it seems that you have no
understanding what Christian theology teaches. Notice, I do not insist
that you become a Christian (though I prefer that you would), rather
that you understand Christian concepts so that when someone like Steve
Miller brings up a Christian concept, you at least understand what he
is talking about.
Karl W. Randolph.
More information about the b-hebrew