[b-hebrew] Year 13 Hebrew Grammar
jimstinehart at aol.com
jimstinehart at aol.com
Sun Aug 21 22:24:20 EDT 2011
Dear Dr. George Athas:
My last post posed the Hebrew grammar issue at Genesis 14: 4 as follows:
“[E]-v-e-r-y-t-h-i-n-g would check out perfectly, if the second half of Genesis 14: 4 says “And Year 13 they rebelled”, while not saying how it is usually translated: “And in the 13th year they rebelled.” From the standpoint of Hebrew grammar, what is your analysis of the second half of Genesis 14: 4?”
To that you responded: “Jim, the question doesn't interest me as it interests you. And I think it a gross overstatement to claim that this is the greatest biblical mystery of all. I suspect few if any others agree with your estimation of the problem.”
Does your answer/non-answer imply that my proposed Hebrew grammar analysis of the second half of Genesis 14: 4 has merit? If my Hebrew grammar analysis was in error, I would have expected you to attack it on the merits, for example by pointing to Biblical examples that contradict it, rather than saying that the general subject area I have raised “doesn't interest me as it interests you.” I hope I am not out of line to take your answer/non-answer as possibly implying that my proposed analysis of the Hebrew grammar of the second half of Genesis 14: 4 is a reasonable position to take on a grammatical basis.
As to the non-grammatical issue that you have raised twice now, you and I can agree to disagree as to how super-ultra-exciting it would be to know the exact year in which Abram is portrayed in Genesis as first settling at the Patriarchs’ Hebron. If we knew exactly w-h-e-n Abram first settled at the Patriarchs’ Hebron, then on that basis we could figure out w-h-e-r-e the Patriarchs’ Hebron is located (northeast Ayalon Valley in the LBA vs. southern hill country in EBA or MBA), and w-h-y Lot is oddly portrayed as going east (rather than north or south) in leaving Bethel, shortly after the text makes that controversial reference to the Canaanite and the Perizzite. Pretty soon we might figure the whole thing out, including (if we’re thinking big) at long last even identifying w-h-o the historical Girgashites [Gera-ge-%i-ya/GR-G-%-Y] and Jebusites [I-bu-uS-ya/YBWS-Y] at Genesis 15: 19-21 are. Every name at Genesis 15: 19-21, and everything said in chapter 13 of Genesis, checks out historically in spades if Year 12 was when Abram first settled at the Patriarchs’ Hebron, whereas as far as I can see, those Biblical texts seem largely inexplicable on any other proposed timing. Although to me that set of issues is the most exciting Biblical mystery out there, I respect your view that few other people may share that particular passion of mine.
Honestly, I was primarily simply trying to get from you your analysis of the Hebrew grammar of the second half of Genesis 14: 4, since I greatly respect your knowledge of Hebrew grammar. (I would still l-o-v-e to hear your analysis of the Hebrew grammar of the second half of Genesis 14: 4.)
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