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Random goodies

November 28, 2007

Couple of links:

What it feels like to be a baby – very cool article. I knew a good bit of these things randomly, but to have them put together in a narrative like this really opens things up for me.

Nazi archives finally made public – dang.

A couple of insights in biblical languages from last night:

Hebrews 4:12 (NAS) – For the word of God is living and active and sharper than any two-edged sword, and piercing as far as the division of soul and spirit, of both joints and marrow, and able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart.

In Greek, word order does not matter for sentence flow (they use endings on the word to associate what goes with what). But word order can matter for emphasis. The participle ‘living’ is the first word in the sentence. Boom! Makes it significant. Then, on top of that, the participle is in the present tense. In Greek, the present tense makes things stand out, puts them in the foreground. Everything prior to that participle in the immediate context had been in the ‘background’ tense (aorist). So Allen’s rough translation with emphasis added…

For the word of God is ALIVE and…

I just love the imagery and emphasis that the word of God is not stagnant/dormant, but as alive as it gets.

Exodus 3:14 – God said to Moses, “I AM WHO I AM”; and He said, “Thus you shall say to the sons of Israel, ‘I AM has sent me to you.'”

In discussing the verse with my prof last night, the words “I am” in this verse are not the name of the Lord, Yahweh, but actual verbs (1st person conjugation of the “to be” verb, the word “Yahweh” shows up in the next verse). They are in the Hebrew imperfect tense, which simply signifies incomplete action. So either English present tense or English future tense is appropriate.

“I am who I am” could also be translated “I will be who I will be”and may be more appropriate in the beginning stages of Exodus because God hasn’t shown the people who He is yet, hasn’t saved them yet, hasn’t yet to show His character.

But, later in the OT and then in the NT, “I am” might be more appropriate because God HAS shown Himself and brought the people out of Egypt, etc.

So, in John 8, when Jesus angers the Pharisees because he says he’s seen Abraham and then says “Truly, truly, I say to you, before Abraham was born, I am,” the “I am” there is in the Greek present tense, emphasized and all. Giddy up!

2 Comments leave one →
  1. November 29, 2007 2:13 am

    Great insight. Makes me think of Needham talking about God… “Men and women, everything He is, He will be… to me!”

  2. Jeana permalink
    November 29, 2007 5:06 pm

    Yes, I thought of that, too, Jed! I love that. I also remember Needham saying that we can even mix up the “I am” and “I will be”…sort of like, “I will be who I am.” I love that we can trust and expect God to be everything that he is and everything he has proven himself to be.

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