[b-Hebrew] 22 nd Psalm

David Kimbrough (CLWA) dkimbrough at clwa.org
Mon Nov 24 17:36:15 EST 2003


Here is a question for you.  The translation you favor reads "Like a lion
[at] my hands and feet".  However there does not appear to be any "at" in
the phrase.  Am I missing something in the text or are you offering a
suggested emendation?  What do you think of the previous comment that the
verb "to be" in the present tense is often dropped?  Would the translation
"Like a lion are my hands and feet" make any sense?  Clearly the previous
commenter did not think so.

dkimbrough at clwa.org


-----Original Message-----
From: Jason Hare [mailto:jason at hareplay.com]
Sent: Saturday, November 22, 2003 3:47 PM
To: B-Hebrew
Subject: Re: [b-Hebrew] 22 nd Psalm


> >Your translation of the ketib as "my hands and my feet are like the lion"
is
> >very interesting but what do you suppose it means for one's hands or feet
to
> >be like a lion? ...
> >
> I consider this meaningless, and so I prefer to understand "they pierced".

What keeps us from translating it literally as the Hebrew has it? We have to
think about our preconceptions. Do Christians have the preconception that
this verse is talking about Jesus and, therefore, look for a reason to make
it mean 'they pierced' through emendation, etc.? Do Jews look for a
reactionary way to force the text *not* to mean 'they pierced' so that we
have one more point on which we do not have to conceed Christian
interpretation of Scripture fulfilment by Jesus? What are our
preconceptions?

Personally, I would prefer that the text *not* say 'they pierced' because
(1) I do not like the idea that this whole psalm is applied to Jesus
messianically and (2) I do not know why a band of evil men who surrounded
David (assuming that he composed this psalm) would 'pierce his hands and
feet'?

However, I can see how he can-having wrestled with lions, etc., as a
shepherd-look at his enemies who are surrounding him as an "assembly of
evil-doers, like a lion [at] my hands and my feet." He sees that any move he
makes will get him devoured by these evil-doers, just as if countered by a
lion any move is the wrong move. I agree with the Hebrew text. I do not
think that 'they pierced' makes any sense in reference to David. I think it
only makes sense when given a messianic ("Jesus died on the cross") flavor
that cannot be afforded by the Hebrew Bible.

This is just my opinion, and it is probably clouded by my preconceptions (as
I have stated), but I do not think it is an invalid opinion given the life
and experiences of David.

Regards,
Jason

P.S. Thank you, Peter... I had thought that I *did* send this to the list,
but I guess I just hit replay. You might go ahead and reply in the vein that
you were saying before... on the list. Thanks! :-D

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