[b-hebrew] Definite Article 7:14
torythrp at yahoo.com
Sun Jul 15 02:33:20 EDT 2007
This is becoming offensive. Citing it is one thing, but I cannot see
how it is even remotely list-appropriate to actually quote from a
Christian commentary on the significance of the definite article in
Isa. vii 14.
On Jul 15, 2007, at 2:12 AM, Bryant J. Williams III wrote:
> Dear Joe,
> See the following quote from Jamieson-Fausset-Brown, Volume II, Job-
> Jer.-Mal., page 586:
> "a virgin - from the root, to lie hid, virgins being closely kept
> from men's
> gaze in their parent's custody in the East. The Hebrew [ha'almah]
> and the
> LXX. here, and the Greek [hH PARQENOS], Matt. i.23, have the
> article, 'the'
> virgin, some definite one known to the speaker and his hearers;
> the woman, then a virgin, about immediately to become the prophet's
> wife,, and to bear a child, whose attainment of the age of
> (about three years) should be preceded by the deliverance of Judah
> from its
> two invaders. The term 'ha'mah' denotes 'a girl of marriageable
> age,' but
> not married, and therefore a 'virgin' by implication. Bethulah is
> the term
> more directly expressing virginity of a bride or betrothed wife
> (Joel 1.8).
> Its fullest significancy is realized in " 'the' woman (Gen. iii.15)
> 'seed should bruise the serpent's head,' and deliver captive man (Jer.
> xxxi.21,22, "O virgin of Israel, turn again...for the Lord hath
> created a
> new thing in the earth, A woman shall compass a man;" ..."
> It should be noted that the discussion is not the meaning of
> "virgin" which
> has been covered in previous sessions (see archives on B-Hebrew and
> and respective passages), but on the use of the article being
> definite. It
> appears that way in Genesis 3:15, "THE woman," et al. It is clear
> that God,
> through Isaiah, wants to make it quite clear to Ahaz that a "definite
> virgin" is clearly in mind and is known. Who that "virgin" is or
> whether I
> agree with the above quote that it refers to "Isaiah's second wife"
> is not
> the issue. That is a speculative thought, albeit may fit the
> context of
> 8:1ff. What is the issue is that the "article" is definite regardless
> whether it refers to Isaiah's wife/betrothed or another's wife/
> betrothed who
> is a virgin, of marriageable age and presumed to be a virgin unless
> otherwise indicated. It is not used in a generic and indefinite
> sense in
> this passage.
> Furthermore, the actual sign given to Ahaz is prove to him, even in
> unbelief as a descendant of David that the promise of II Samuel 7
> is an
> unconditional promise to have a descendant on the throne of David
> of the two kings who were trying to force is hand. Therefore, the
> article is
> used to point in that direction.
> En Xristwi,
> Rev. Bryant J. Williams III
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: <JoeWallack at aol.com>
> To: <b-hebrew at lists.ibiblio.org>
> Sent: Saturday, July 14, 2007 5:25 PM
> Subject: Re: [b-hebrew] Definite Article 7:14
>> In a message dated 7/10/2007 2:52:30 PM Central Daylight Time,
>> hholmyard3 at earthlink.net writes:
>> Dear Joseph,
>>> HH: I should have been clearer. If the context lacked a specific
>>> that the hearer could identify, he might have been able to
>>> that the reference was generic and indefinite.
>>> Genesis 14:13 is Narrative, not Dialogue.
>> HH: What difference does that make to the discussion one way or the
>> Because 7:14 is Dialogue and in Dialogue there is a clear Hearer.
>> A better
>> question for you is why is it so hard to find an example of a
>> speaker in
>> Dialogue using the definite article and the Hebrew Hearer not
>> knowing the
>>> JW: "If the context" lacked a specific
>>> that the hearer could identify". The most likely explanation is
>>> identity is known to the speaker and not the hearer and the hearer
>> HH: It would be good if you identified exactly what you meant by the
>> terms "speaker" and "hearer" because there is no direct speech in
>> 14:13. The speaker could be the narrator; the hearer could be the
>> who hears the words read.
>> I'm using Hebrew Hearer in connection with Explicit Dialogue.
>>> JW: You want the possibility that the identity is known to the
>>> the Hearer does not know that the identity is known to the speaker.
>>> this is possible, isn't it unlikely? And considering that the same
>>> writing the part for Speaker and Hearer isn't it more than unlikely
>>> would be this type of misunderstanding? Still waiting for an
>>> in the Hebrew Bible.
>> HH: If I accept that the escapee is the speaker and Abraham is the
>> hearer in Gen 14:13, since the author is writing the part for
>> them, what
>> difference does it make whether or not Abraham the hearer knows the
>> identity of the person speaking, beyond the fact that he is an
>> And of course, the escapee knew his own identity as the speaker. And
>> Abraham would know that the speaker knew his own identity. I think
>> I am
>> misunderstanding what you are saying. Are you perhaps ambiguously
>> two different meanings to the term speaker (narrator and escapee).
>> My point (remains) is that 14:13 is not very relevant to our issue of
>> In addition to its lack of
>> Dialogue, you youself have pointed out that the Speaker (escapee)
>> is not
>> identifying any third party.
>> When I say "Narrator" I mean author.
>>> JW: I'm beginning to fear that at the present rate of discussion
>>> could actually arrive before we determine his/her identity.
>> HH: Are you trying to identify whether the person in Isa 7:14 is
>> or is
>> not the Messiah? I think you can have it both ways, given the
>> of the Book of Isaiah and the possibility for a double use of the
>> I believe Isaiah uses Immanuel to speak about near events and
>> also about
>> far events. His appearance in chapter 8 (8:8, 10), a transition
>> between 7 and 9, points in this direction to me, since the
>> Immanuel is an otherwise unknown person, yet the Immanuel in
>> chapter 8
>> may be an important person, like the child in chapter 9. There is
>> a lot
>> of reuse of elements from 7:14 in 9:6, which also suggests a relation
>> between the two children.
>> Peter, this is Exegesis.
>>> JW: In order to try and
>>> avoid this contingency let me try to speed things up here.
>>> offending word of 7:14 and with Apologies to Isaac Fried, you and I
>>> the Hebrew Definite article is used. My position is that for
>>> indicates a defnite and therefore, known person to the Hebrew
>> HH: But you haven't proved that the definite article implies that
>> person is known to Isaiah in the sense that he knows the name of the
>> If the person is known to Isaiah this Implies that Isaiah knows
>> the name.
>> Isaiah could simply know the person as a woman within God's
>> prophecy. Even if the definite article clearly indicates
>> there is no requirement that Isaiah personally knew or could
>> the person when he conveyed a prophecy that had a general
>> The definite article Implies (as opposed to "proves") that Isaiah
>> who and the name.
>>> JW: At
>>> this point, whether or not this known person is known to the Hebrew
>> hearer, I
>>> say that "the" is the likely English translation. I'm guessing
>>> current position is that you agree with me that this known
>>> person is
>>> known to Isaiah. Yes or no?
>> HH: This is a complex question, especially because this prophecy
>> to involve a double fulfillment. I believe it had a fulfillment in
>> Isaiah's time, and I don't think he knew what virgin he was speaking
>> about there, since the term "the virgin" could be generic, one
>> who is in
>> the status of virginity.
>> Do you think Isaiah knew it was a double prophecy?
>> The generic use could become more specific as
>> details pile up. Or it could have been a specific woman God
>> informed him
>> about in prophecy without his having any idea who in particular
>> it was:
>> someone in Israel. I think Isaiah associated Immanuel with the child
>> described in chapter 9. However, how much Isaiah knew or did not
>> about the mother of the child in chapter 9 is unclear. All
>> mothers are
>> virgins at some point in their lives. The virgin in Isa 7:14 did not
>> have to give birth while she was still a virgin. The understood
>> could be future: one who is a virgin (now) will in the future be
>> pregnant and will be bearing a child.
>> You keep answering "possible" when I ask "probable". When you do
>> that are
>> you refusing to give a "probable" or conceding my "probable"?
>>> JW: I understand you think it possible that this person
>>> is unknown to the Hebrew hearer. Do you think that likely?
>>> Finally, if
>>> agree that the person is known to Isaiah but think this person is
>> to the
>>> Hebrew hearer, do you think "a" is a possible translation or
>>> should be
>> HH: If by hearer you mean the person Isaiah was speaking to, of
>> course I
>> think it is possible that the virgin was unknown to him.
>> You again answer a question I didn't ask.
>> HH: No woman is
>> mentioned in the context. It would probably be poor writing to
>> speak so
>> significantly about a specific person in the context and not even
>> identify the person or even indicate that she was in the context.
>> It is
>> a bit doubtful that there was some particular person identified
>> to all
>> Israel as "the virgin." But this book was written for the nation of
>> Israel. Not only that, it was written for future generations, as
>> elsewhere speaks of events in the future and of people who will
>> live in
>> the future. He addresses generations that go into exile to Babylon
>> later return to Israel.
>> See my previous comment.
>> HH: If you believe in the NT, then it was written
>> for future generations for many centuries to come (1 Pet
>> 1:10-12). So it
>> would seem to be poor writing, if the woman was well-known, not to
>> identify her for all these people, who were not there in Isaiah's
>> and would perhaps not otherwise know who he was talking about,
>> Now you are using 1 Pet 1:10-12 to help translate 7:14?
>> HH: I can only go by what the text says, and there is no
>> indication in
>> the text that Isaiah knew the person he was talking about or that the
>> readers did. The generic use of the definite article seems to make
>> assumptions about Isaiah or his audience knowing the person
>> "I can only go by what the text says". First consider what preceded.
>> Brown would
>> find your "no indication" above "fantastic". Is your position now
>> definite article in
>> 7:14 is probably used generically?
>> Joseph Wallack
>> ************************************** Get a sneak peak of the all-
>> new AOL
>> b-hebrew mailing list
>> b-hebrew at lists.ibiblio.org
>> For your security this Message has been checked for Viruses as a
> of Com-Pair Services!
>> No virus found in this incoming message.
>> Checked by AVG Free Edition.
>> Version: 7.5.476 / Virus Database: 269.10.6/900 - Release Date:
> 3:36 PM
> For your security this Message has been checked for Viruses as a
> courtesy of Com-Pair Services!
> b-hebrew mailing list
> b-hebrew at lists.ibiblio.org
More information about the b-hebrew