[b-hebrew] verb forms - Isaiah 56:6-7 was dying you shall die

Lisbeth S. Fried lizfried at umich.edu
Wed Apr 11 20:16:13 EDT 2007

> -----Original Message-----
> From: Peter Kirk [mailto:peter at qaya.org]

> > The whole point of the passage in Isaiah 56 is to look forward to the
> > when God's house would be called the house of prayer of all peoples. At
> > time when the text was written the temple had been destroyed by Babylon
> > newly rebuilt.  The writer of Isaiah 56 is hoping for a more benign
> > than the world which existed then, and exists today.
> >
> >
> I know this is the traditional exegesis. But why do you exclude the
> thought that the author was hoping and perhaps campaigning for the newly
> rebuilt Temple in his own time to be open to all? You can't do so on the
> basis of the Hebrew verb forms, at least as well as they are understood
> today.
> I could understand Harold and Bryant wanting to reject my suggested
> interpretation on the basis of the future verbs in the verse as quoted
> by Jesus, and in LXX. But I don't see why you are insisting on this.
Oh, I don't insist on anything but that verbs in Yiqtal be translated by the
English future (and verbs in Qatal by English past tense), that's all I
insist on. You are probably right in fact, the author was indeed campaigning
for the acceptance of eunuchs and foreigners into the temple community. This
doesn't mean that the present tense should be used to translate the verb,
the future can begin anytime from the moment the poet lifts his pen from the
Liz Fried

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