The language in which the Jewish Scriptures (Tanakh) -- or the "Old Testament" in Christian Bibles -- were written.

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Is being “cut off from one's people” the cause or effect of sin?

Neither Jewish nor Christian theologians have a clear consensus on the meaning of the term "cut off from one's people," which appears many times in the Torah, especially in Leviticus. To take one ...
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What is the meaning of the repetition of “holy” in Isaiah 6:3?

In Isaiah 6:3, the seraphim call one to another, saying: Holy, holy, holy is the LORD of hosts; the whole earth is full of his glory!” (ESV) קָדֹ֧ושׁ׀ קָדֹ֛ושׁ קָדֹ֖ושׁ יְהוָ֣ה צְבָאֹ֑ות ...
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Is Elijah fed by ravens or Arabians?

A couple of commentaries mention that scholars dispute that Elijah was fed by ravens and instead think the word in 1 Kings 17:4-6 ought to be translated black arabs or perhaps "Orbites, i.e., ...
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Are 2 Samuel 1:25 and 1:27 questions or an exclamations?

In 2 Samuel 1:25 and 1:27 there appears the sentence: אֵיךְ נָפְל֣וּ גִבֹּרִ֔ים Ekh naphelu gibborim How the mighty have fallen! / How have the mighty fallen? Is this meant to be understood as ...
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How many times does the Hebrew word הֵילֵל (heilel) occur in the Masoretic text?

In Isa. 14:12, the Hebrew text according to BHS states, אֵ֛יךְ נָפַ֥לְתָּ מִשָּׁמַ֖יִם הֵילֵ֣ל בֶּן־שָׁ֑חַר נִגְדַּ֣עְתָּ לָאָ֔רֶץ חֹולֵ֖שׁ עַל־גֹּויִֽם Does the Hebrew word הֵילֵל occur ...
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Were "the thieves” who reviled Jesus on the cross only one person?

I recently ran across this answer on C.SE reconciling Luke’s account of the repentant thief on the cross (Luke 23:40) with Mark’s statement - also present in Matthew - that both thieves reviled Jesus ...
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What is the proper translation of Genesis 32:28?

I was reading Genesis 32:28 and the scripture reads as follows, Genesis 32:28 (NIV 2011): Then the man said, "Your name will no longer be Jacob, but Israel, because you have struggled with God ...
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Can “יָתוֹם” designate someone who has lost his father but not his mother?

The word "יָתוֹם" has been translated as "fatherless" by numerous translations (ESV KJV NASB etc, cf. Psalm 109:9), but "orphan" by others (LXX, Vulgate, TNK etc), dictionaries mentioning the two ...
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2 Sam. 2:9: אֶל and עַל

I have a question concerning the Hebrew text of 2 Sam. 2:9: וַיַּמְלִכֵהוּ אֶל הַגִּלְעָד וְאֶל הָאֲשׁוּרִי וְאֶל יִזְרְעֶאל וְעַל אֶפְרַיִם וְעַל בִּנְיָמִן וְעַל יִשְׂרָאֵל כֻּלֹּה English ...
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Questions concerning Zec. 2:11

Here is the Hebrew text of Zec. 2:11 (2:15 Masoretic): וְנִלְווּ גוֹיִם רַבִּים אֶל יהוה בַּיּוֹם הַהוּא וְהָיוּ לִי לְעָם וְשָׁכַנְתִּי בְתוֹכֵךְ וְיָדַעַתְּ כִּי יהוה צְבָאוֹת שְׁלָחַנִי ...
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Why the two paragogic nuns in 1 Sam 2:22?

in the Semitic languages, paragogic letters are what scribes add to the ordinary forms of words in order to express some additional emphasis and/or some change in the sense. For example, in the ...
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Is “revile the gods” (KJV) an accurate translation in Exo. 22:28?

In Exo. 22:28(1) (KJV), it is written, Thou shalt not revile the gods, nor curse the ruler of thy people. Is "gods" the correct translation of the Hebrew? The Hebrew word is אֱלֹהִים ...
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Who or what is Rahab in Job?

The most famous Rahab in the Bible is the prostitute of Jericho who hid the two Hebrew spies in Joshua 2. But there seems to be a different Rahab introduced in Job: “God will not turn back his ...
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Is there a way to express monotheism in hebrew language? [closed]

The arab has a way to express monotheism. La ilah la Ilalah In english, it means no god but the god. Or no god but Allah. Here, the word ilah in arabic language and the word god in english means ...
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Are bdellium and onyx stone types of 'gold'?

The Hebrew noun זהב means 'Gold', but in the context of Genesis 2:12 it would read more naturally as a generic term for anything precious that is found naturally: 10A river flowed out of Eden to ...
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How should the first line of Judges 5:2 be translated?

So at some point, I'm hoping to be able to answer this question. In the meantime, though, I keep running into more questions, this one concering the first line of the Song of Deborah (Judges 5:2). It ...
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Who is “not speaking” in Jeremiah 10:5?

In the beginning of Jeremiah 10 there is a discussion of those who cut down trees, and then erect them and decorate them. I assume this was some sort of idolatrous practice. In verse 5 the verse ...
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What does “Under the Sun” mean in Ecclesiastes?

I noticed that the Teacher uses the phrase "under the sun" more than 20 times in Ecclesiastes. I have always understood this to simply mean "on earth" as The Theological Wordbook of the Old Testament ...
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Why is Elohim translated as God rather than gods in Genesis 1:1?

I mean Elohim is a plural form of God. So the correct translation would be gods. Now, perhaps the word elohim is followed by singular words and hence the word Elohim must mean plural. So what? That ...
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Accurate translation of חֶמְדַּ֣ת in Haggai 2:7

Haggai 2:7 (BHS): וְהִרְעַשְׁתִּי֙ אֶת־כָּל־הַגֹּויִ֔ם וּבָ֖אוּ חֶמְדַּ֣ת כָּל־הַגֹּויִ֑ם וּמִלֵּאתִ֞י אֶת־הַבַּ֤יִת הַזֶּה֙ כָּבֹ֔וד אָמַ֖ר יְהוָ֥ה צְבָאֹֽות׃ I've been researching and I've ...
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To whom does El-Gibbor refer in Isaiah 9?

I've asked about the translation philosophy of the long title in Isaiah 9. This question drills down into one of the phrases: El-Gibbor. According to Wikipedia, there are two basic options: The ...
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Linking NT Greek to Hebrew through the LXX

What tools are the necessary tools to determine what NT Greek words correspond to the Hebrew words that were translated into the LXX?
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Numbers 22:22 Who sent the angel of the LORD to stop Balaam?

Did Satan stand against Balaam on his own zealous volition or did the LORD send him to stop Balaam? ויחר אף אלהים hot was nostril/wrath of G-d כי הולך הוא because went he ויתיצב מלאך יי בדרך and ...
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Could Deut. 30:11-14 be a forward-looking prophecy?

The Standard Interpretation The NASB translates Deuteronomy 30:11-14 as follows: “For this commandment which I command you today is not too difficult for you, nor is it out of reach. It is not in ...
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“he will rule over you” — good, bad, or neutral?

In Genesis 3:16 we read about God's curse on the woman: To the woman He said, “I will greatly multiply Your pain in childbirth, In pain you will bring forth children; Yet your desire ...
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How did Biblical translators decide on cypress for the type of wood in Noah's ark?

Reading from Genesis 6:14 (NRSV): Make yourself an ark of cypress wood; make rooms in the ark, and cover it inside and out with pitch. There is a note at "cypress" which says: Meaning of ...
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What does it mean for someone to be another person's “portion”? [closed]

Searching for the word "portion" brings up a lot of results in the Bible. Sometimes it means a portion of food or of money. But what exactly does it mean in the following context: LORD, you alone ...
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What is the difference between “eretz” and “adamah” in Gen 2:6?

These two words are variably translated as ground, earth, land etc. How should we understand the difference between the words in this passage? Genesis 2:6 And a mist was going up from the land ...
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What was the hedge the LORD made around Job? (1:10)

What is the meaning of "made a hedge" in this verse? Does the Septuagint translation provide any additional insight into the meaning? Job 1:10 NKJ "Have You not made a hedge around him, around ...
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Is LXX “Enoch pleased God” a reasonable idiomatic translation of Hebrew “Enoch walked with God”?

The Septuagint translates the Hebrew phrase וַיִּתְהַלֵּךְ חֲנֹוךְ אֶת־הָאֱלֹהִים "Enoch walked with God," from Genesis 5:22 as εὐηρέστησεν δὲ ενωχ τῷ θεῷ "Enoch pleased God." I would have ...
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The name of God in ancient manuscripts

I came across the following from an unofficial/unverified source: Yahu An alternative spelling and pronunciation of Yahweh, found (spelled YHW) on a circa 800 B.C.E. ostracon from Kuntillet ...
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Does Job intend to see God “in” or “without” his flesh in Job 19:26?

Job 19:26 reads: And after my skin has been thus destroyed, yet in my flesh I shall see God.(ESV) The ESV footnote on the word in says, “or without”. The NET note: This could mean “without ...
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128 views

What was the 'testimony' that Aaron's rod was brought before?

Numbers 17:10 (KJV) And the LORD said unto Moses, Bring Aaron's rod again before the testimony, to be kept for a sign against the rebels; and you shall put away their murmurings from me, that they ...
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To whom was Boaz paying when buying Naomi's land?

Ruth 4:9: Then Boaz said to the elders and all the people, “You are witnesses this day that I have bought from the hand of Naomi all that belonged to Elimelech and all that belonged to Chilion ...
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Why is the light in day 1 of creation not an 'it'?

Throughout Genesis 1 there are two repeated refrains: ויהי כן 7And God made the expanse and separated the waters that were under the expanse from the waters that were above the expanse. And it ...
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Are the divine name and its contracted form somehow unique or are they truly inter-changeable?

According to Strongs H3050, there are 48 occurrences in the Hebrew Bible where God's name is rendered as יָהּ (Yah). Most of these are found in the Psalms. This suggests it is a poetic form. ...
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What is the meaning of the paseq in Genesis 1.5?

Genesis 1:5: וַיִּקְרָ֨א אֱלֹהִ֤ים ׀ לָאֹור֙ יֹ֔ום וְלַחֹ֖שֶׁךְ קָ֣רָא לָ֑יְלָה וַֽיְהִי־עֶ֥רֶב וַֽיְהִי־בֹ֖קֶר יֹ֥ום אֶחָֽד׃ (WLC) God called [paseq] the light Day, and the darkness he ...
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Is Isaiah 1:18 reasonable?

I’m accustomed to the ESV Isaiah 1:18 (defining my own a/b/c clauses for the sake of discussion): (a): “Come now, let us reason together, says the LORD: (b): though your sins are like scarlet, ...
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Why is Job referred to by the feminine pronoun in Job 1:15?

טו וַתִּפֹּל שְׁבָא וַתִּקָּחֵם, וְאֶת-הַנְּעָרִים הִכּוּ לְפִי-חָרֶב; וָאִמָּלְטָה רַק-אֲנִי לְבַדִּי, לְהַגִּיד לָךְ. This verse, Job 1:15, ends with "and I alone escaped to tell you". The "you" ...
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Can the word translated as “messiah” be considered a title when referring to Jesus?

The word translated as "messiah" in the Bible can apparently have a few meanings in both Hebrew and Greek. It is usually used to simply say "anointed" or "anointed one". For example, see this usage: ...
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Exo. 4:16 - “And you shall be to him for [an] elohim” (וְאַתָּה תִּהְיֶה לֹּו לֵאלֹהִים)

In Exo. 4:16, it is written, And he shall speak for you to the people, and he shall be --- he shall be to you for a mouth, and you shall be to him for [an] elohim [אֱלֹהִים] וְדִבֶּר הוּא ...
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Was the Passover meal to be boiled according to Deuteronomy 16:5-7?

In a recent exchange, Peter Enns responded to a review of his recent book, defending what he sees as a a contradiction between Exodus 12:8-9 and (from what I can gather) Deuteronomy 16:5-7. He seems ...
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What is the best translation of Job 6:14?

NKJV: “To him who is afflicted, kindness should be shown by his friend, Even though he forsakes the fear of the Almighty." NASB: “For the despairing man there should be kindness from his friend; So ...
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Why does the King James have “turtle” in Song of Solomon 2:12?

Ernie Harwell was famous for starting his first baseball broadcast of the Detroit Tigers spring with the following quote: Song of Solomon 2:11-12 (KJV) 11 For, lo, the winter is past, the rain ...
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Blessed is the man who WALKS NOT or HAS NOT WALKED?

I noticed in studying the Psalms that Psalm 1 in the old Coverdale text reads, "Blessed is the man that hath not walked in the counsel of the ungodly, nor stood in the way of sinners, and hath not sat ...
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Where can I find Targum Neofiti online?

I'm looking for Targum Neofiti online in the original Hebrew/Aramaic lettering. Does anyone know where I can find it?
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Was there some connection between barley bread and Gideon in the mind of the Midianites?

Before attacking the Midianite camp, Gideon does a little spying: When Gideon came, behold, a man was telling a dream to his comrade. And he said, “Behold, I dreamed a dream, and behold, a cake of ...
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Where does the name “Beelzeboul” come from?

Mark 3:22:1 Καὶ οἱ γραμματεῖς οἱ ἀπὸ Ἱεροσολύμων καταβάντες ἔλεγον ὅτι Βεελζεβοὺλ ἔχει καὶ ὅτι ἐν τῷ ἄρχοντι τῶν δαιμονίων ἐκβάλλει τὰ δαιμόνια. (NA28) And the scribes who came down from ...
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Why was crocodile (תנין) from Exodus 7:10 translated as snake or serpent?

In Exodus, chapter 7, verse 10, Aaron throws his staff of the ground in front of Pharaoh and it becomes a תנין in the Hebrew Bible as well as the Leningrad Codex. The Septuagint translates it as ...
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Translation of “Selah” (סֶלָה‎)

What is the current scholarly opinion on the possible translations for "Selah" (סֶלָה‎) as used in the Psalms?