[b-hebrew] uncovering Boaz' 'footsies' was Samson at Gaza - Judges 16:1

K Randolph kwrandolph at gmail.com
Wed Aug 29 11:46:03 EDT 2007

Dear George:

On 8/28/07, George Athas <george.athas at moore.edu.au> wrote:
> Hi Karl!
> When someone is pointed out as eating and drinking, it usually indicates to
> excess (cf. the accusation made against Jesus).
Drinking some was normal, drinking to excess was notable and noted,
e.g. 1 Samuel 25:36.

The accusation against Jesus was centered on Deuteronomy 21:20 and
similar verses.

There is no indication that Boaz did anything out of the ordinary. Are
we not imposing our modern expectations when we imply more than what
the text says, namely that he had a good time with friends in the
midst of the hard work of threshing the harvest?

> Also, the point about the Qere/Kethib was not whether it was original, but
> rather the Qere uses the euphemism of 'feet' to soften the harshness of the
> Kethib. I mentioned it simply to point out the euphemism.
And I question it for three reasons: 1) is it not later, not a
reflection of Biblical Hebrew? 2) as later, does it reflect a
different use of the terms than used in Biblical Hebrew? and 3) is our
modern understanding accurate even to how it was understood when it
was added to the text?

> I think we've just about exhausted this topic. We're obviously not going to
> agree, and I don't think there's anything more we can add. Nevertheless,
> I'll let you all have the last word.
> Best Regards,
> Moore Theological College (Sydney)
> 1 King St, Newtown, NSW 2042, Australia
> Ph: (+61 2) 9577 9774
Yes, we'll have to agree to disagree.

The question we need to ask, at what point do we cross the line from
just reading between the lines to adding content not intended by the
text? Biblical Hebrew was often written obliquely, requiring reading
between the lines in order to get proper understanding (Job and
Jeremiah were often the worst offenders in this regard), but when do
we go too far and start adding meaning to the text that doesn't

I, James and others think you and those who agree with you on this
example are going too far, are adding to the text. Yet, much of the
reason that we cite again is from reading between the lines. So which
way of reading is correct?

Karl W. Randolph.

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