[b-hebrew] qetseph in 2Ki 3:27

Karl Randolph kwrandolph at email.com
Thu Jul 3 14:40:39 EDT 2003

----- Original Message -----
From: "Liz Fried" <lizfried at umich.edu>

>  Liz can you give us other
> > examples where pagan deities are shown in the OT as responding
> > favorably to
> > human sacrifice or any other kind of sacrifice?
> >
> > This isn't a rhetorical question, I really want to know.
> Well..., I don't think it's relevant really.....
> Just cuz one episode sneaks in, that doesn't mean there'll be more.
> Uh, how about Exodus 7:11,22; 8:7???
> >
> > greetings, Clay
> Best,
> Liz
Many years ago, when I was a callow youth, I read a book in my uncle’s house written by a man (journalist?) who spent a few years traveling through the Near East and Asia with the specific goal of learning magicians’ tricks. Some of his recreations didn’t work very well, such as his Indian Rope Trick, which got only about waist high, but the book contained a lot of interesting stories. It was published about 1950, I don’t remember the name of the author nor title.

In Egypt he was presented a stick. When he reached out to take it, the magician pulled it back, then threw it on the floor. There was a spitting, poisonous snake. Then the magician circled around, saw his moment and, faster than the snake could react, grabbed it right behind the head and the snake stiffened into a “stick” again. It turns out that a particular type of snake stiffens into a straight, stiff form when the nerve is pushed right behind the head, and the magicians knew it.

In Exodus 7:11,22; 8:3 (7 in English) Egypt’s people were copying Moses’ signs “in their sorcery” and not by calling on their gods. Those magicians should have recognized that something greater was occuring than their tricks when they saw Moses pick up his snake by grabbing the tail (Exodus 4:4) and it returned to a stick. I wonder what tricks they used to “replicate” God’s actions in 7:22 and 8:3.

Years ago my uncle retired and got rid of his library, so I have no clue where even to start to look to find the name of the book or its author. He doesn’t remember the names either.

Yours, Karl W. Randolph.
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