Bruce James
  • Member for 8 years, 10 months
  • Last seen more than 4 years ago
In Psalm 22:21 is the Bible speaking of "unicorns"?
19 votes

Since the Book of Psalms was written in Hebrew, let's look at what Hebrew language and Bible scholars say on the subject. Specifically with regards to Psalm 22:21 (verse 22 in some Bibles), it says: ...

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Is "kill" a valid translation for Exodus 20:13 (Thou shalt not kill)?
13 votes

In the Jewish understanding, every negative commandment of the Torah (the Five Books of Moses, i.e. Genesis through Deuteronomy) consists of two parts, a notice of what a violation would encompass, ...

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Was nûn deleted from Psalm 145 in the Masoretic Text?
10 votes

It is true that all Jewish prayerbooks and scriptural resources exclude a "nun" line in Psalm 145. It is also true that the Septuagint, the Greek translation of the Bible read by Greek-speaking Jews ...

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Why is the observation that "it was good" missing on the second day?
8 votes

Rashi simply explains that the work begun on Day 2 was not completed until the middle of the third day. Hence, an uncompleted piece of work could not properly be pronounced as "good." At verse 11, ...

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What were the translators of the LXX thinking in rendering “virgin” in Isaiah 7:14?
8 votes

The translation of almah as virgin makes no sense in context. First, the word almah is a vague term that means a young woman. Betulah is a more specific term for a virgin, especially one whose ...

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Were all the Canaanites slaughtered or not?
Accepted answer
7 votes

No, the Caananites were not destroyed by the Jewish people. The cited verse in Joshua 10:40 speaks only of the completion of Joshua's campaign against the Canaanie tribes of the south. In the next ...

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How did Haman intend to kill Mordecai?
7 votes

It is a gallows. The Book of Esther confirms this at 7:10 where it says: וַיִּתְלוּ אֶת הָמָן עַל הָעֵץ אֲשֶׁר הֵכִין לְמָרְדֳּכָי וַחֲמַת הַמֶּלֶךְ שָׁכָכָה: And they hanged Haman on the gallows ...

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What exactly did Moses do wrong at Meribah?
7 votes

What Moses did wrong is exactly what the Hebrews did wrong when they sent the spies and they believed the pesimistic report given by the spies. In both cases, G-d told them that they could do ...

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In Esther 5 why did Esther arrange a second meeting?
6 votes

According to Rabbi David Nativ's lecture "The Historical Framework of Megillat Esther," (translated by David Silverburg), Esther's goal is to create tension between Haman and the King. So by hosting ...

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How to understand Leviticus 18:22 and 20:13
6 votes

I don't think any of your four options answer your question. From an Orthodox Jewish perspective, the answer to your question is that each verse serves a different purpose. In the Torah -- the Five ...

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What does Azazel mean in Leviticus 16:8?
6 votes

I would not translate Azazel as being the goat itself. The verse at Lev. 16:10 specifically says that Aaron the priest would draw lots on Yom Kippur day -- the Day of Atonement. There were two lots ...

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What is the new covenant made with Jews/Israel in Jeremiah 31:31
5 votes

First, let me put into context that "new covenant" as used in Jeremiah does not mean a covenant that replaces an "old covenant." When we speak of "the Covenant" we are usually talking about the one ...

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What was the 'reproach of Egypt' referred to in Joshua 5:9?
5 votes

The phrase חֶרְפֵת מִצְרַיִם refers generally to the fact that some Jews up until that point had retained some Egyptian customs (see Ralbag to Joshua 5:9), but more specifically, it refers to the ...

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How can Ruth "return" to a place she had never been?
Accepted answer
5 votes

Your question is not a new one, but was asked centuries ago by the rabbis. The answer depends upon whether you are looking for a literal or metaphoric meaning. Ruth 1:22 says: וַתָּשָׁב נָעֳמִי ...

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What does the "splendour of Israel" has been hurled down to earth mean?
5 votes

According to Rabbinic tradition, found in a Midrash (Eicha Rabbosi 2,2): It is analogous to the inhabitants of a kingdom who made a crown for the king; they kept provoking and angering the king and,...

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How do we know the usage of the term Adonai in Genesis 15:2?
5 votes

Verse 15:2 says: וַיֹּאמֶר אַבְרָם אֲדֹנָי יֱהֹוִה מַה תִּתֶּן לִי וְאָנֹכִי הוֹלֵךְ עֲרִירִי וּבֶן מֶשֶׁק בֵּיתִי הוּא דַּמֶּשֶׂק אֱלִיעֶזֶר The phrase at issue here is "אַדֹנָי יֱהֹוִה" -- the ...

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Psalm 51:5 CEV vs ESV
5 votes

I cannot explain why two different translators would come up with different meanings except to say they had different agendas. One agenda, I'm afraid, is the concept that sex is dirty or wrong, and ...

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What is meant by "as numerous as the stars of the sky"?
5 votes

Although Niobius' answer is good, it misses a bit of the point. G-d gives a childless Avram two metaphors to understand (a) that he would have a lot of progeny, and (b) that they had both tremendous ...

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Abraham's faith accounted to him for righteousness
Accepted answer
5 votes

This is an interesting question. To put this verse into context we must begin with chapter 12 where we learn that G-d commands Avram to leave his home and to go to some place G-d will eventually show ...

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Does the past tense in the suffering servant song (Isaiah 53) refer to Jesus?
4 votes

Jason: If you assume that the prophecy in Isaiah 53 actually begins at Isaiah 52:13 -- a line that uses the future tense -- then the text will read much differently than taught in church. We need to ...

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What is the significance of seal, cord, and staff?
4 votes

The answer is simple. These three item are unique to Judah and Tamar wanted them only to prove that Judah was the father of her child (and proving that she did not commit adultery, but had conducted ...

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In Exodus 2:12, did Moses commit murder?
Accepted answer
4 votes

Under Jewish law he did not commit murder. The Egyptian was in Talmudic parlance a rodef -- a pursuer; i.e. one who was trying to kill another person or persons. In such instances, the pursued have ...

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When was Ruth written?
Accepted answer
4 votes

According to the Babylonian Talmud, Bava Basra 14b, Samuel was the author of the Book of Ruth. While the rabbis, there, equivocate about the authorship of other books of the Hebrew Scriptures, there ...

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Psalm 34:20 applied to Jesus' crucifixion
4 votes

The question and the answers suffers from the assumption that the Psalms are prophecy, rather than statements of fact or faith, and also from the inconvenience that in context, Christologic ...

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Who or what is Rahab in Job?
4 votes

I would follow the view of Rashi who at Job 9:13 says that Rahab would be the angel assigned to assist Egypt. Rashi understands this from the use of the word Rahav (רָהַב), which he translates as "...

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Why is "raah" usually translated differently in Amos 3:6 and 9:4
4 votes

Jewish translations make no distinction between the two verses. Rashi looks at the Amos 3:6 in context with the verses before and after 3:6, pointing out that the roar of the lion, mentioned in ...

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To what extent is Psalm 51:4 poetic exaggeration?
4 votes

First, remember that David was king, and as king he answered to no one but G-d. He could have ordered Uriah killed on whatever pretext and then taken Bat-Sheva. He had that authority. Instead, what ...

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What did Isaiah intend with his unusual usage of "create" in Isaiah 45:7?
4 votes

The answer isn't difficult if you get the translation right. The translation used in the question is skewed to fit with the Christian image that G-d only creates good. That is not Isaiah's lesson. ...

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What is the point of Ezekiel not mourning his wife?
3 votes

Rashi explains, at verse 22, and others explain that God commanded Ezekiel to not follow any of the restrictions of mourning (from these verses, Jews actually learn the Torah's restrictions on ...

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Did King Ahaz find a virgin mother?
3 votes

The answer to this question is that the sign given to Ahaz was not that there would be a virgin who would give birth. There are several facts that support this: A virgin birth is a sign too ...

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