[b-hebrew] Psalm 57:5 (57:4 in English)

K Randolph kwrandolph at gmail.com
Thu Oct 19 10:47:34 EDT 2006


This was not a trick question, rather a case where one gets so fixated
on one idea that he (in this case "I") did not see the obvious from
another angle.

להטים LH+YM you are right comes from the root connected with reducing
to ashes, used also in sorcery (e.g. Exodus 7:11). I recognized that
it did not come from the root נטה N+H as its infinitive form is להטות
LH+WT, but I was so fixated on that the lamed had to be a prefix that
I didn't see the reducing to ashes meaning. Words connected with flame
or fire are sometimes used to refer to the blade of a tool or weapon
because of the flashing as they reflect light (e.g. Genesis 3:24,
Judges 3:22). So from this context, one could say "Sons of man are
weapon blades, their teeth a spear and arrows, their tongue a sharp

But the first part of the verse still gives me problems. לביא LBY)
means lioness, used in plural only in Nahum 2:12 so I wonder if it
here comes from the concept of coming?

Karl W. Randolph.

On 10/19/06, Gary Hedrick <garyh at cjfm.org> wrote:
>         Karl, is this a trick question?  Okay, I'll bite.
>         "My life [is] among lions (labiyim); and I lie [even among] them who
> are set on fire (lahatim, Qal participle active), sons of men whose teeth
> are spears and arrows, and their tongue a sharp sword."
>         Okay, so he was having a bad day.
> Gary Hedrick

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