Friday, August 26, 2016

A Tour through Ps. 119: Qoph

Posted by Lisa Laree to Beer Lahai Roi

Sigh.  This has been two weeks in process; maybe that's the new normal for now.  But finally I can hit 'publish'

Besides being the 4th from the last letter in the Hebrew alphabet, Qoph is a really, really good word to remember when you're playing Scrabble (R)... :-)  It bears a passing resemblance to a capital P, if you stretch it out a bit, and it begins all the first words in verses 145-152.  Here's the NIV 84 version:

I call with all my heart; answer me, O LORD, and I will obey your decrees.
I call out to you; save me and I will keep your statues.
I rise before dawn and cry for help; I have put my hope in your word.
My eyes stay open through the watches of the night, that I may meditate on your promises.
Hear my voice in accordance with your love; preserve my life, O LORD, according to your laws.
Those who devise wicked schemes are near, but they are far from your law.
Yet you are near, O LORD, and all your commands are true.
Long ago I learned from your statutes that you established them to last forever.

Now, I have had a bit of an epiphany-- someone who actually knows something about Hebrew left a comment on the last post about the translation.  And I went back and checked the dictionary I was using and found that the translation she gave me was not listed in the definition of the word, nor was it ever translated that way in King James.  So my dictionary has lost a bit of its credibility....or maybe my use of it is not quite correct. Because she KNOWS.

But, because it's all I have, I'm going to plug right along.  Just keep in mind...this is not any kind of authoritative work here.  I'm exploring and learning how to research.

Here's this week's exploration...

[I] cry out with [my] entire inner man:  Answer me, Yahweh; your statutes [I] will guard.
[I] cry out [to] you: Save me; I will protect your divine testimonies.
Before dawn, I cry out for help, waiting for your word.
My two eyes meet the watches of the night, [as I] meditate upon your word.
Hear my voice according to your kindness, Yahweh; by your judgements refresh me.
Pursuers of mischief come near [it? me?]; from your law they are distant.
You are near, Yahweh, and all your commandments are true.
From antiquity, it is obvious that your divine testimonies have been established as everlasting.

The last verse was hard...the individual words didn't match up well to the Hebrew listed in the interlinear, but I'm limited to looking them up by the numbers so I'm not sure what the extra letters are about.  And the word min, which modifies edah, which I have rendered 'divine testimonies' when I encounter it (the dictionary states 'always plural and always of laws as divine testimonies'), is particularly puzzling.  The most common usage of it is that it is referring to a part out of a whole...which made me wonder if the verse is actually saying something along the lines of 'I only know a part of your eternal divine testimonies'  ....but that really didn't match up at all with what any of the knowledgeable translators have said, so I backed off of that.  What I have is a pretty lame paraphrase, I think, but since I just couldn't come up with something I was confident in based on the resources I had...I think it works..

Verse 150 has an interesting construction, too.  The NIV implies that the wicked folks are near to the psalmist; the King James is a little more vague...They draw nigh that follow after mischief.  From the construction, it seems to me that the verse is demonstrating that folks who chase after mischief will pull right up to it, but in doing so they put themselves farther from the laws of God.

Which is kinda sad...

Saturday, August 13, 2016

A Tour through Ps. 119: Tsadhe

Posted by Lisa Laree to Beer Lahai Roi
The next letter is Tsadhe ...which looks a lot like a script Y; with a higher fork and swirlier tail than Ayin.  And I'm not really sure how it's pronounced. But it starts off each verse from Ps. 137 - 144 in the Hebrew; and translated as follows in the NIV 84:

Righteous are you, O  LORD, and your laws are right.
The statutes you have laid down are righteous; they are fully trustworthy.
My zeal wears me out, for my enemies ignore your words.
Your promises have been thoroughly tested, and your servant loves them.
Though I am lowly and despised, I do not forget your precepts.
Your righteousness is everlasting and your law is true.
Trouble and distress have come upon me, but your commands are my delight.
Your statutes are forever right; give me understanding that I may live.

I got exactly that far about two and a half weeks ago and all blogging pretty much shut down as we cranked out what needed to be cranked out to be able to head out of town for a week.  We had a great visit with family...but now I'm struggling to get back in the groove.

So, with a deep breath, I'm going to go dictionary diving in hopes of getting the post up before I forget how to do it. ;-)
Righteous are you, Yahweh, and upright are your judgements
Your divine judgements that you have appointed are righteous and exceedingly steadfast.
My zealous ardor has consumed me, for my oppressors have ceased to care about your words.
Your word is tried exceedingly and proven true; therefore your servant loves it.
I am despised and insignificant, [but] I [will never] forget your precepts.
Your righteousness is justice that continues on forever, and your law is true.
Distress and anguish have taken hold of me, yet your commandments are my delights.
The righteousness of your testimonies endures forever; give me understanding and I shall have life.

God's word is proven to be righteous and true; it endures forever and, despite what troubles come or what others may think, that righteous truth brings life and joy and hope.  Why would anyone abandon it?

Monday, August 1, 2016

Lame Excuses...

Posted by Lisa Laree to Beer Lahai Roi

So, no...I did not get picked to be on a jury.  I was actually released about noon on Tuesday, but, being a part time employee I don't qualify for paid jury leave.

I have plenty of banked comp time, so it really didn't matter, but this is promotion season, when all the kids classes advance to the next level, so there is some tedious group-switching-work going on in the data base, PLUS...our women's conference is just around the corner and I'm trying really hard to stay caught up on registrations. So I worked 4 hours on Friday to try and catch up.

Plus, we finally had that long-postponed family celebration dinner for the Flute Player's 20th birthday, now that all the travelers have come home.

So...long story short, I did not get even half of my Ps. 119 post done last week. 

But I have gotten about 95% of my current West Coast class finished...I charged through 6 of the 8 chapters in the textbook on Monday, so it has not been a total washout.  I have one more video to watch and summarize and I'll be done with class #3...which will make me 1/4 of the way through. 

And I've already ordered and received the book for class #4.  Chuggin' right along.

I will try to get the Tsadhe post up this week; I know that next week's blogging will also be non-existing, just looking at the schedule.  But we're in the home stretch; there are only 4 letters left after Tsadhe.  Almost done with Ps. 119.  It's been a great exercise in word study; I've learned a lot, even if it hasn't really significant to anyone else.

But that's pretty true of my blogging in general, so I'm good with that. ;-)