Mal. 2:16

Paul Zellmer zellmer at
Sun Jun 6 07:02:58 EDT 1999

This is a continuation of the thread started by Edgar Foster a couple days ago.  The text
under consideration is:


and the particular focus is on the use of the third person for &FN")


My search capabilities are severely limited, but, by searching on the string )FMAR Y:HWFH,
I was able to find one other case where YHWH refers to himself in the third person.
Coincidentally, it also was found in Malachi, this time, in 1:9.  And comparing the two
cases reveals a possible explanation.  In both cases, the preceding contexts use the third
person, and naturally so.  Chapter 1:7-9 leads off by posing the unlikely situation of
giving defective animals to governors.  It continues this third person reference to a
superior in verse nine, the superior in this case being God.  Similarly, 2:13-16 starts
off by referring to the Lord as rejecting offerings because of the divorce situation among
the people.  While the first person could have been used here, the separation caused by
the use of the third person is very acceptable.  Verse 16 just continues this.

In answer to your original question, I would suggest a translation that also continues the
third person: "because he hates divorcing," says YHWH, the God of Israel.

A side note: these two cases do not suggest a separation by Malachi between YHWH and God.
The other cases of (FMAR Y:HWFH are clearly tied to the first person, and they include the
concepts that the offerings are given to the subject as God.



On June 6:
  1931  "There Ought To Be A Moonlight Saving Time" by Guy Lombardo hits #1
  2012  Transit of Venus (between Earth & Sun) occurs

Paul and Dee Zellmer, Jimmy Guingab, Geoffrey Beltran
Ibanag Translation Project
Cabagan, Isabela, Rep. of Philippines

zellmer at

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