1 Sam 31:5: was Saul necessarily dead?

Dave Washburn dwashbur at nyx.net
Fri Dec 31 00:14:02 EST 1999

Peter wrote:
> Well, here's an interesting question. Does the phrase in 1 Sam 31:5:
> WAY.AR:) ... KIY M"T $F)UWL
> necessarily mean that Saul was actually dead, or can it mean simply 
> that he appeared to the armour bearer to be dead?
> This is actually a question of Hebrew!

And a good one!  I'm wondering why we have to consider M"T a 
perfect and not a participle?  If it's the latter then we read "[he] saw 
that Saul was dying."

Dave Washburn
Teach me your way, O Lord, and I will walk in your truth;
give me an undivided heart that I may fear your name.
                                   Psalm 86:11

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