[b-hebrew] Psalms 68

Peter Kirk peter at qaya.org
Tue Dec 13 13:01:20 EST 2005

On 13/12/2005 17:42, Herman Meester wrote:

>The accuracy of this or that translation depends on considerations of
>text criticism. And if we wonder "what would אלהים Elohim suddenly be
>doing in the wilderness?" which I think would be a point, ...

I am not an expert on this. But look at v.8 (in Hebrew). Here we have 
God marching through the wasteland, Y$YMWN, and bringing rain there. The 
point in the context would seem to be that the desert is where his 
enemies live (in a sun-scorched land, v.7), and so he rides out into the 
desert to defeat his enemies and release those taken captive by the 
enemy. This makes good sense of vv.2-11. There is also a clear allusion 
to the Exodus story, when God was understood as travelling with his 
people through the desert.

>... we can take
>the Ugaritic formula and He then rides in the skies, heavens, clouds,
>an image we often see in Antiquity.

It seems to me that certain exegetes and translators have been so 
enchanted by an apparent parallel in Ugaritic that they have failed to 
take proper note of what the Hebrew actually says and means in context.

Peter Kirk
peter at qaya.org (personal)
peterkirk at qaya.org (work)

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