[b-hebrew] YHWH

TedBro at aol.com TedBro at aol.com
Tue Dec 25 22:32:58 EST 2007

I agree that there is no reason to think that YHWH is idiomatic for  superior 
or that it is semantically connected to ANI. Also seeing YHWH as a  Hiphil of 
HYH is speculative as it is, to my knowledge, unattested elsewhere.  However, 
don't you think the expression 'EHYEH ASHER 'EHYEH (Exodus 3:14) shows  some 
kind of verbal etymology, even though the proper name itself would clearly  be 
a noun.
In a message dated 12/25/2007 8:57:02 P.M. Eastern Standard Time,  
yitzhaksapir at gmail.com writes:

YHWH is  not used in these verses at all.
YHWH is not equivalent to ANI in any way  or form.  YHWH is the divine name
of God.  It is a noun, not a  verb.  The suggestion to read it as
Hiphil of HYH is
problematic  because the verb doesn't seem to have an Hiphil.  While a Hiphil
may  have developed later on, the divine name is attested already in the  9th
century BCE and perhaps even earlier.  Also, the name is probably  present in
the name of the king Jehu.  This seems to indicate that the  first three 
are consonantal, and the last is not.  Therefore,  the proposal that the 
name is connected to any verbal form of HYH is  rather weak.  Even if it is,
the verb's sense is definitely future,  third person, and probably causative.
I don't see how an equivalence to ANI  would get you "superiority."  ANI is 
a pronoun.  It has no  sense of superiority.
HYH as a verb is not equivalent to ANI.   Possibly we can suggest that HYH is
used for "I was" "I will be" whereas  ANI is used for "I am," but this doesn't
mean that they are  equivalent.  It means that Hebrew and English have 
syntax  and express these terms in different ways syntactically.
The short answer  to your question is a definite no, and it wouldn't make YHWH
idiomatic for  superiority or anything close anyway.

Yitzhak  Sapir


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