Genesis 2:16

Discussion must focus on the Hebrew text (including text criticism) and its ancient translations, not on archaeology, modern language translations, or theological controversies.
Forum rules
Members will observe the rules for respectful discourse at all times!
Please sign all posts with your first and last (family) name.
User avatar
SteveMiller
Posts: 351
Joined: Sun Nov 03, 2013 7:53 pm
Location: Detroit, MI, USA
Contact:

Re: Genesis 2:16

Postby SteveMiller » Thu May 09, 2019 10:03 pm

Saro Fedele wrote:Thanks (@ Steve Miller) for your comments on the post I've sent. The fact you reply me comforts me, because this indicates my English was enough clear to express what I want to tell.

You're very welcome, Saro, and thank you for your posts. I hope to hear more from you on this discussion list.

Saro Fedele wrote:In English language (in Italian, too) we use - very often - some adverbial forms to match the semantic range of the 'certainty' mood, as in the phrase 'Don't you be going to work? - Surely I will go." (in Italian, an uncommon - though correct - structure that is is similar to the Hebrew phenomenon we expatiate on. In fact, we say 'Certamente andrò' [= 'Surely I will go'], but also 'Andrò, andrò' [= 'I will go, I will go']. This last manner to speak is semantically equivalent to the first cited - 'Surely I will go'. I'm not sure if English language possesses a similar manner to express 'certainty'.)

In English I don't think we express certainty by repeating a verb. We repeat an adjective, like "he's a bad, bad man", meaning "he's a very bad man." One place where I hear a verb repeated, is when a baseball player hits a long fly ball, then the announcer says, "going, going, gone" for a home run; or "going, going, foul" for a long foul ball, or "going, going, caught" for a long fly that is caught for an out. The meaning there isn't certainty, but that the ball is going for a long time in the air.

Saro Fedele wrote:So, we may try to insert some adverbial 'certainty'-related forms inside each of those passages you cited (I will use the translation you quoted).
Lev 7:18 & 19:7: "And if any of the flesh of the sacrifice of his peace-offering be actually eaten on the third day..."
Lev 10:18: Here the adverbial form 'certainly' is mentioned yet in the translation you quoted.
1 Sam 14:30: "How much more, if the people had eaten really to-day of the spoil...!"
2 Sam 19:42: "Have we actually eaten anything which came from the king..."
Joe 2:26: "And ye surely shall eat, and be satisfied."

It seems to me that in this manner these TaNaKh passages acquire a plain and consistent sense, besides to consent to maintain the logical principle I've cited ('A given, single linguistic phenomenon ideally matches with a given single meaning').


John Goldingay's translation mostly agrees with you.
He translates Gen 2:16 From every tree in the garden you may definitely eat
And then v17 as "definitely die".
1Sam 14:30 actually eaten
2Sam 19:42 actually eaten
Joe 2:26 eat and eat (It's a different construct, but I prefer your translation here because there is no "and" between the 2 "eat"'s)

Lev 19:6 It's to be eaten on the day you sacrifice it, or the next day.
What is left until the 3rd day is to be burned in fire.
7 If it's actually eaten on the 3rd day, it will be an objectionable thing. It won't find acceptance.
Lev 7:17 but what is left of the flesh of the sacrifice is to be burned in fire on the 3rd day.
18 If any of the flesh of his well-being sacrifice is eaten at all on the 3rd day, the one who presents it won't find acceptance.

Notice how Goldingay tried to translate the term consistently, but felt that would not be the meaning for Lev 7:18.
Yet he translated the very similar Lev 19:6 as "actually eaten".

I too was struggling with both verses in Lev to try to apply the meaning of certainty.
The thought is not that the person unambiguously ate of the sacrifice on the 3rd day, but that he did it at all.

"Actually" in English can mean "done in fact" as opposed to "thought about doing it" or "said he was going to do it".
"Actually" can also mean that it is surprising, contrary to expectation, as in "He actually thought I would agree to his plan."

I think the "surprising" meaning of "actually" fits in both Lev verses. God said in the the preceding verses to burn what remains on the 3rd day. If a person actually disobeys what God just said, then here are the consequences.

So it seems that all the meanings of this construct can be covered by the meaning of certainty or actually.
Sincerely yours,
Steve Miller
Detroit
http://www.voiceInWilderness.info
Honesty is the best policy. - George Washington (1732-99)

miketisdell
Posts: 2
Joined: Sun Jul 21, 2019 4:46 pm

Re: Genesis 2:16

Postby miketisdell » Mon Jul 22, 2019 11:13 am

Isaac Fried wrote:Every Hebrew present day nursery school legend book starts with היוֹ היה פעם, 'once upon a time' or merely היוֹ היה 'once there was'. I don't remember ever thinking about this quaint form as implying 'certainly -- once there certainly was'.
Translating מ֥וֹת תָּמֽוּת as 'you will die, beyond all doubt', degrades the Hebrew text with an English redundancy about, a coming from nowhere, "doubt". מ֥וֹת תָּמֽוּת is 'you will die'. Sorry, English.
So, what is the difference between מ֥וֹת תָּמֽוּת and תָּמֽוּת? Nothing, the end result of both is death.

Isaac Fried, Boston University



I have to agree with Isaac Fried, translating מ֥וֹת תָּמֽוּת as 'you will die, beyond all doubt' is absolutely wrong. The infinitive followed by an absolute is a very frequent structure in Biblical Hebrew and it is used to add emphasis and "freely eat" and "surely die" are two valid ways to add emphasis.

Additionally מכל עץ-הגן should be translated "from every tree of the garden" not "From the whole of the Tree of the protected garden."

miketisdell
Posts: 2
Joined: Sun Jul 21, 2019 4:46 pm

Re: Genesis 2:16

Postby miketisdell » Mon Jul 22, 2019 11:17 am

Isaac Fried wrote:Every Hebrew present day nursery school legend book starts with היוֹ היה פעם, 'once upon a time' or merely היוֹ היה 'once there was'. I don't remember ever thinking about this quaint form as implying 'certainly -- once there certainly was'.
Translating מ֥וֹת תָּמֽוּת as 'you will die, beyond all doubt', degrades the Hebrew text with an English redundancy about, a coming from nowhere, "doubt". מ֥וֹת תָּמֽוּת is 'you will die'. Sorry, English.
So, what is the difference between מ֥וֹת תָּמֽוּת and תָּמֽוּת? Nothing, the end result of both is death.

Isaac Fried, Boston University



I have to agree with Isaac Fried, translating מ֥וֹת תָּמֽוּת as 'you will die, beyond all doubt' is absolutely wrong. The infinitive followed by an absolute is a very frequent structure in Biblical Hebrew and it is used to add emphasis and "freely eat" and "surely die" are two valid ways to add emphasis.

Additionally מכל עץ-הגן should be translated "from every tree of the garden" not "From the whole of the Tree of the protected garden."

Saboi

Re: Genesis 2:16

Postby Saboi » Fri Aug 02, 2019 9:44 am

Philo is reading the Septuagint.

In Genesis 2:16, תאכל is φάγῃ, Future - 2nd Person Singular but in the following verse, תאכל is φάγεσθε and תמות is ἀποθανεῗσθε, that are, Future - 2nd Person Plural (תאכלו/תמותו)

What is most interesting about these verb, they are future-perfect, the reduplication denotes the perfective aspect, אכל תאכל & מות תמות (Future Perfect).

מות תמות > τεθνήξῃ "thou shalt die"


Return to “Hebrew Bible”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Isaac Fried and 0 guests