[b-hebrew] Prophetic Perfect? Jer. 50.

Lisbeth S. Fried lizfried at umich.edu
Thu May 20 15:28:00 EDT 2004


Dear Vadim, Rolf, etc.
It is not a blunder to use the past tense for events
that have already happened. 
A later writer adding his two-cents to the writings of
Jeremiah had no need to pretend that he was Jeremiah himself.
He just wrote, and his words were added. You are impugning 21st
century ideas of authorship to antiquity.
Do you think all the letters of Paul were written by him?
(You probably do.)
Or that the Wisdom of Solomon was written by Solomon?
Or that Isaiah of Jerusalem wrote Isaiah 40?
(I guess you probably do.)
Well, I don't.
Liz Fried


> -----Original Message-----
> From: b-hebrew-bounces at lists.ibiblio.org 
> [mailto:b-hebrew-bounces at lists.ibiblio.org] On Behalf Of UUC
> Sent: Thursday, May 20, 2004 12:31 AM
> To: b-hebrew at lists.ibiblio.org
> Subject: Re: [b-hebrew] Prophetic Perfect? Jer. 50.
> 
> Dear Liz and Rolf,
> 
> Perhaps a post-Jeremiah author was careless enough to 
> sometimes slip in the past tense? This is no blunder compared 
> to what is routinely forgiven to the NT authors.
> 
> Another option is too reconsider the historical dating of 
> certain events and kings. As you know, current datings are 
> more or less a wild conjecture.
> 
> 
> Best regards,
> 
> Vadim Cherny
> 
> 
> > I have not stated the assumptions that you ascribe to me, 
> and whether 
> > or not I believe that a person whose name was Jeremiah, who 
> lived in 
> > the times of Zedekiah, wrote the book,  is irrelevant from a 
> > linguistic and translational point of view. This is so, 
> because even 
> > if a person a long time after Zedekiah wrote the book and 
> pretended to 
> > be a Jeremiah of the 6th century B.C.E., he would naturally 
> give the 
> > verbs a future reference. If he did not write "prophecies", people 
> > would quickly see through his scheme.
> >
> > Therefore, when I say that except when a prophet (read:a 
> book claiming 
> > to be written by a certain prophet) utters words of 
> judgment against a 
> > present population, the default interpretation of a 
> prophet's words is 
> > future, that is a descriptive statement and not a 
> theological one. It 
> > does not require any particular view regarding the writing of the 
> > book.
> >
> > To use the verb forms to find the time that is referred to by a 
> > certain writer is impossible. And to argue that by the use of this 
> > verb in the book of Isaiah, which is past tense,  we unmask the 
> > writer. He pretends to be a prophet speaking about the future, but 
> > without realizing it, by the use of this and that verb, he 
> shows that 
> > he writes after the events have happened. Such arguments are 
> > fallacious in my mind.
> > A very good example showing that I do not switch the 
> meanings of the 
> > verbs around to conform to my hypothesis, is  Psalm 107. If you in 
> > this Psalm manage to find a pattern on the basis of the YIQTOLs, 
> > WEYIQTOLs, WAYYIQTOLs, and QATALs  I will admit that I am guilty of 
> > this switching.  I also suggest that you take a look at the 
> long lists 
> > of different Hebrew forms used with the same meaning in the 
> works of 
> > Alexander Sperber, from 1938 to 1959. After studying these lists, I 
> > think that second thoughts regarding the use of verb forms 
> to fix time 
> > would emerge in the mind of manu students.
> >
> >
> > Best regards
> >
> > Rolf
> >
> >
> > Rolf Furuli
> > University of Oslo
> >
> >
> >
> > >  Dear Rolf,
> > >I don't agree that Jeremiah 50 speaks about a future event.
> > >That katav is used in fact demonstrates that Jer. 50 is 
> about a past 
> > >event not about a future event.
> > >Now you assume that it is about a future event because you 
> say that 
> > >Jeremiah lived in the time of Zedekiah and that the fall 
> of Babylon 
> > >didn't occur until the time of Cyrus.
> > >I don't assume this however. I assume that a later writer added to 
> > >the book of Jeremiah and wrote about a past event.
> > >You switch the meanings of the verbs around to conform to your 
> > >hypothesis that these are all the exact words of the prophet who 
> > >gives his name to the book.
> > >Liz Fried
> > >Ann Arbor
> > >
> >
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> > b-hebrew at lists.ibiblio.org
> > http://lists.ibiblio.org/mailman/listinfo/b-hebrew
> >
> 
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