Friday, June 17, 2016

A Tour through Ps. 119: Lamedh

Posted by Lisa Laree to Beer Lahai Roi.

(a sample of the scribbled notes from the last Ps. 119 post...)

This week we have Ps. 119: 89-96; which all begin with the Hebrew Letter Lamedh, which is an interesting extra-tall squiggle...sort of like a '7' with a Ronald Reagan hairdo.  Here 'tis in the NIV '84 translation:

Your word, O LORD, is eternal; it stands firm in the heavens.
Your faithfulness continues through all generations;  you established the earth, and it endures.
Your laws endure to this day, for all things serve you.
If your law had not been my delight, I would have perished in my affliction.
I will never forget your precepts, for by them you have preserved my life.
Save me, for I am yours; I have sought out your precepts.
The wicked are waiting to destroy me, but I will ponder your statues.
To all perfection I see a limit; but your commands are boundless.

That.  Right there.  Just sayin'.

 This is so plain I don't even really feel like I need to pull out the Zodhiates...but I'll stick to the established I go to see what I come up with.

Except in cases where it just exceedingly awkward, I try to preserve the word order that appears in the Hebrew....which is about half the time, I think. 

From everlasting, Yahweh, your word is established in the two heavens.
Generation after generation, your steadfastness establishes the whole earth, and it remains.
By your ordinances, all your servants stand to this day.
If your law had not been my delights, then [I would have] strayed in my misery.
Never in eternity will I forget your precepts, for they preserve me alive.
Yours am I,  give [me] victory because I carefully seek your precepts.
[The] wicked lie in wait to destroy me; I will show myself attentive to your divine testimonies.
[I] have perceived the end of all perfection, but your commandment is exceedingly wide.

Really not that different, but there is an interesting bit in verse 89...'heavens' has a prefix that denotes 'dual' in, two, specifically.  And the word 'heaven' can be translated either the physical, visible heavens...the sky, the stars...or the throne room of God.  Kind of a clever implies God's word is established and firm in BOTH.

The other verse that intrigued me is verse 92...'perished' can also be translated 'strayed'; 'affliction' can also be translated 'misery'...and, as I pondered that, I thought about how easy it is to get caught up in a tough spot and give up on God...if His word is not a refuge and a delight.

It's not a legalistic, religious thing to love God's word.  It's life-preserving.

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