[b-hebrew] Jeremiah 17:9

K Randolph kwrandolph at gmail.com
Sat Dec 8 11:09:11 EST 2012


As I’m cleaning out my mailbox, I came across this unfinished business.

Looking up in my concordance, this word )N$ is listed once as a verb in 2
Samuel 12:15 referring to the first son of David and Bathsheba, the one
conceived during the affair they had before David had Uriah, Bathsheba’s
husband, killed in battle. This was not just sickness, rather dying.

It is the Masoretes who concluded that this use in Jeremiah 12:15 means
“incurable” as they pointed it to indicate that they thought it is a
defective spelling for )NW$.

A fresh look at this verse indicates that it could be a Qatal verb to
indicate “dying”, making this verse mean, “The heart is more crooked
(morally) than anything and it is dying, who knows it?” then the answer in
verse 10, “It is I, YHWH, who investigates the heart …”

Does this clear things up?

Karl W. Randolph.

On Tue, Oct 9, 2012 at 9:46 PM, K Randolph <kwrandolph at gmail.com> wrote:

> Michael:
> The second word, אנש )N$ is one that I have questions on now that you ask,
> and I don’t have my reference book (concordance) nearby.…
> Karl W. Randolph.
> On Tue, Oct 9, 2012 at 9:49 AM, Michael Abernathy <
> mabernathy at conwaycorp.net> wrote:
>>  I'm having some trouble getting a handle on Jeremiah 17:9.
>> עָקֹ֥ב הַלֵּ֛ב מִכֹּ֖ל וְאָנֻ֣שׁ ה֑וּא מִ֖י יֵדָעֶֽנּוּ׃
>> A number of Christian translations read something like
>>  The heart is more deceitful than anything else and incurable who can
>> understand it?****
>> This translation seems to be influenced by the doctrine of total
>> depravity.  I don’t have a real problem with that but I’m not sure the
>> context fits this.  The context of verse 10 seems to make this look like
>> it focuses more on the difficulty of understanding the human mind.****
>> ** **
>>  וְאָנֻ֣שׁ suggests a number of options, sick, incurable, man (both the
>> Syriac and LXX interpret it that way),
>> The second half may be translated in the following ways:****
>> “and incurable, who can understand it?”****
>> “and sick, who can understand it?”****
>> “and who will understand it is sick?”****
>> “and it is man, who can understand him (or it)?”
>>  I see that Jeremiah 17:14 may give some credence to the idea of the
>> heart being sick but I’m not sure how this would be understood.  Would
>> that be sick as in mentally ill, raving lunatic, moral sickness?****
>> I’d appreciate any help in sorting this out.****
>> Sincerely,
>> Michael Abernathy
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