[b-hebrew] Isaiah 53: oppression?

Harold R. Holmyard III hholmyard at ont.com
Thu May 27 09:49:48 EDT 2004

Dear Vadim,

>I cannot imagine any other name for your exercise than "wild speculation."
>Whom else Ps107:39 refers to if not princes?

HH: It refers to the people mentioned in the previous verses:

Psa. 107:35 He turned the desert into pools of water and the parched 
ground into flowing springs;
Psa. 107:36 there he brought the hungry to live, and they founded a 
city where they could settle.
Psa. 107:37 They sowed fields and planted vineyards that yielded a 
fruitful harvest;
Psa. 107:38 he blessed them, and their numbers greatly increased, and 
he did not let their herds diminish.
Psa. 107:39 Then their numbers decreased, and they were humbled by 
oppression, calamity and sorrow;

HH: God changed the land into fertile farmland. Then He led hungry 
people to settle there and build a city. They prospered, and God 
blessed them. Then for some reason left unexplained, they diminished 
in numbers and were humbled through oppression, calamity, and sorrow.

>Where did you find the meaning of otzer as "coercive?"

HH: Coercion and oppression are similar concepts. I did not find the 
meaning of "coercive." That was part of a footnote from the NET Bible:

The translation above assumes that /m here has an instrumental sense, 
"by, through," and understands otzer umishpat , "coercion and legal 
decision," as a hendiadys meaning "coercive legal decision."

HH: A hendiadys is two nouns joined by a conjunction that function as 
a single idea. Often when a hendiadys is translated into English, the 
conjunction is dropped and one of the two nouns is changed into an 
adjective. So coercion changes into coercive.

>Why me is instrumental, when its standard meaning is "from"?

HH: The preposition MiN has many uses, and one of them is 
instrumental. The NET Bible footnote uses the term "Instrumental," 
but another term might be "immediate, or efficient, cause," according 
to the Brown-Driver-Briggs lexicon. So MiN can imply "in consequence 
of, at, by." The lexicon asks the reader to think of the use of the 
Greek proposition APO.

>  >(2) "from [in the sense of "after," see BDB 581]
>arrest and judgment."<

>Close enough. So you wouldn't defend the "oppression" reading? Good...

HH: The above statement is a quotation from the NET Bible. The word 
can mean oppression. It is oppression in Ps 107:39.

>BTW, mishpat is not judgment, but the process of judging.

HH: The lexicons give "judgment" as a meaning of mishpat. You are 
offering too much of a refinement.

				Harold Holmyard

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