question about noun adjective and tense + Isaiah 7:14 "conceiving"

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kwrandolph
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Re: question about noun adjective and tense + Isaiah 7:14 "conceiving"

Post by kwrandolph »

Jason Hare wrote: Sat Nov 28, 2020 11:05 am
ducky wrote: Sat Nov 28, 2020 4:37 am I still don't understand what is the grammar problem that you (and Jason) are talking about.
It's not a grammatical issue in this verse. It's the general idea of how he rejects all Hebrew grammarians who write about the biblical language. He says that they are medieval and teach a Hebrew that is not connected to the Bible. It is his adventure in life to reject every grammarian so that he can simply say whatever he wants about the language, claiming that he got it from reading on his own. As I said, he is a contrarian.
I reject all Hebrew grammarians? I’ve been told that my understanding of Biblical Hebrew grammar is very similar to, if not the same as, that which was taught by the late Dr. Diethelm Michel, professor of Hebrew at Uni Mainz, and still taught by his students. However, I came to my understanding independent of Dr. Diethelm Michel.

There are many scholars who disagree with the medieval teaching of Gesenius and Weingreen, some of whom are listed by Waltke and O’Connor in An Introduction to Biblical Hebrew Syntax. Also many more recent journal articles propose newer understandings.

Karl W. Randolph.
ducky
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Re: question about noun adjective and tense + Isaiah 7:14 "conceiving"

Post by ducky »

Hi Karl,
Sorry for the long post.
kwrandolph wrote: Sat Nov 28, 2020 9:39 am Here all I’m saying is history. Before some Jews started Christianity (it was started as a branch of Judaism) this verse was not controversial. After Christianity was started, when some Jews insisted that it meant “virgin” in relation to Jesus, only afterward do you have the pushback that it didn’t.
Hi Karl,
Even though it is tempting, I hold myself to not comment about it.
Let's keep these so-called "history-facts" aside.
kwrandolph wrote: Sat Nov 28, 2020 9:39 am
ducky wrote: Sat Nov 28, 2020 4:37 amAnd also, how does this verse would create a problem for the Jews. I mean, even if this word was really meant a "virgin" (and it's not) - the text says clearly that this birth will occur soon.
Not necessarily soon. “Soon” is a disputed claim.
My friend, just keep reading the text.
It is said in verse 16 that even before the baby would grow up to be a boy, Judea will be saved from its enemies (Aram and Israel).
So surely, that boy is to be born soon - in a few months (or at most, in nine months).

You cannot disconnect this verse from the rest of Isaiah's words. that's the whole point of that sign.
The sign was given to Ahaz in relation to the threat he's seeing at that moment, and the prophecy relates to that.

And I also read about you seeing בית דוד in this verse as a change of direction. But this בית דוד is the same בית דוד that it is in verse 2 - the present house of Ahaz.
kwrandolph wrote: Sat Nov 28, 2020 9:39 am This is taking a verse with a strange message, namely that a woman who is unknown sexually meaning that she never has had sexual relations with a man, gets pregnant. Jews of that time were not dumb, they knew that babies came only after sex (unlike the anti-Semitic claims put forward by some modern professors) so that a woman who became pregnant without ever having had sexual relations with a man means that God did something very unusual. Throughout history, there’s only one historical claim that that happened.
I understand what you're saying, and it could've been very nice if that is what the prophecy tells us (as I just wrote).

But let's say that I'm taking your view.
Let's say that I read it as Isaiah gave a sign to Ahaz, and that sign is that a virgin would give birth without being with a man.
Okay...
Now I keep reading... and it is said about the birth of that baby, that he won't even grow up to be a boy before Ahaz will be saved.
So we must see this birth from this virgin occurring soon.
it is related to a specific event.

I mean, no matter how you want to read it - this sign is still a sign for Ahaz and for the threat that he's facing - and what's important here, in this prophecy, is the link between the event and the sign. and the event is told specifically.

So if you want to read it as a virgin giving birth - you still have to read that it happened in Ahaz's time.
Also, If you want to read this sign saying that all the bananas in the land will get straight - you would still have to see it related to Ahaz's time.
And if you want to read this sign as a talking fish - you would still have to see it related to Ahaz's time.

The essential part of Isaiah's words here is the link between the sign and the events to come - as they were told specifically.

So even if I do want to read it as a "virgin", I still cannot see this relate to nothing else than Ahaz's time.

*****

And by the way, a virgin giving birth to a god is also in Egyptian myths, Indian myths, Greek/Roman myths - and you can add this "other one" to the list as well if you want.
kwrandolph wrote: Sat Nov 28, 2020 9:39 am That strange prophecy was not fulfilled “soon”.
As I said, just keep reading.
The prophecy is not the birth of the baby. It is the removal of the war threat.
kwrandolph wrote: Sat Nov 28, 2020 9:39 am
ducky wrote: Sat Nov 28, 2020 4:37 am What etymology? and what combination?
I already wrote it once, do you want me to repeat myself.
I read that. and it just seems to me as a common etymology.

Think about it that way.
In the bible, there are plenty of cases where the word "virgin" is written. And it always uses the word בתולה.
Both in law contracts and in prose as well.
Not once it is said עלמה for that pure meaning of virgin.
Why is that? can't the bible write at least once עלמה?

Also, look at the word בתולים as the signs/era of virginity vs. עלומים which means Youth.
Also, look at the word עלם which is explained twice in the context as נער - a young man.

I really don't see it means "virgin" - not in the bible, and not in the other Semitic languages.
kwrandolph wrote: Sat Nov 28, 2020 9:39 am At a time when the laws of sexual purity were strict and punishment harsh, both boys and girls were expected to be virgins until marriage. Hence the terms were synonymous.
If so, and they were synonymous, why is it not found in the laws at all?
When the laws want to say "virgin" it says only בתולה. Why not using its synonym even once?
(And of course, not only in the laws).
kwrandolph wrote: Sat Nov 28, 2020 9:39 am The laws as written by Moses in Leviticus and Deuteronomy were actually harsher towards males who broke those laws of purity than towards females.
I don't know how it is related, but we don't find בתול (as masculine) at all, and also, the word עלם (masculine) is found in the prose - not related to the laws at all.
Anyway, this has nothing to do with the subject.
kwrandolph wrote: Sat Nov 28, 2020 9:39 amFrom what I understand, Jason claims people followed grammar rules strictly, no exceptions. I question the “no exceptions”.

Jason claims that the grammars of Gesenius and Weingreen are accurate descriptions of Biblical Hebrew. I disagree. I see those grammars (which is what I was taught in class) are accurate descriptions of medieval Tiberian Hebrew. But that medieval Tiberian Hebrew differs significantly from Biblical Hebrew, especially in its grammar.
I think you and Jason just don't understand each other.

If we would like to read the biblical words in the same way that they were pronounced in biblical time, then you are correct. Because they indeed were pronounced differently.
Even in this post, we saw ילדת as "yoledet" and as "yoladt".
And we said that the "yoledet" is an evolution of "yoladt" (a late evolution).
(And I'll use that word later in this post again).

By the way, in Tov's book, he brings an attempt of another scholar to write a verse in the 1st temple era pronunciation, (and then he brings his own).

And also, in the biblical era itself, there was a "movement" in the language.

**
But I don't think that Jason even went to that point, and I think that this is why you don't understand each other.

What Jason claims (according to what I think), is that Hebrew evolved through times. And the MT vowels (and so are the grammars book) represent one dialect that was common in Israel, since the 2nd temple era or quite after.
Which this dialect is not an invention, but it is how people spoke while the language evolved naturally. And so, he is also correct.
I really think that you two are talking from different points of view.

Grammar is a pattern of how the words act.
And the Tiberian Grammar, for example, is a little different than the Babylonian grammar (and also has one more vowel, for example).
Just another example, In the Babylonian Masora, the prefix W before the letter BWMP was pronounced "wi", and in the Tiberian one, it is "u:"
How come?
This is how the language evolved in those places - just in a different way.

There were a few dialects of Hebrew. You can never find one dialect for Hebrew (and for any language). And also in Biblical times, there was more than one dialect.
So it is a vain thing (and stupid) to try to search for the "right" Hebrew.

Just like the Quran does not represent the "real Arabic", but it represents the dialect of Quraish (the tribe of Muhammad), and there were/are a lot of Arabic dialects, that some of them are not understandable to the others.

And for that matter, just ask an Israeli guy to listen to the biblical reading of the Yemenite Jews (also Israelis), and he won't understand what he hears. But this Yemenite Jews Hebrew is for centuries and centuries, and it is not better and not less than the Sephardic reading. they are both "the right Hebrew".
(The Yemenite Jews followed the Babylonian Masora).

The Bible was written in the southern dialect (of that time). But in the epigraphics, we can see also the northern one.
as the word שת vs. שנה or as בת vs. בית.
Also here, both are "right Hebrew".

What the MT is - is representing a dialect that was for centuries (that, of course, is also an evolution), and also, by its strict vowels, it kept a lot of the old way of pronunciation. Even if the vowels are not the original vowels - we see that this chosen vowel is based on the old forms.

And sometimes, the MT does keep the old way in some specific cases.
Just like in the word ילדת that was raised here before.

Notice how nice it is that the MT chose to use וילדת in the old way of "veyoladt" only in the three cases of the statement:
הנך הרה וילדת בן
It is like a famous prophecy, and so, the MT kept it in the known way. While all the other ילדת was vowel according to the evolved form "yoledet".

So here we see, that the MT intentionally voweled וילדת according to the old form - to keep the "holy" statement more traditional.

Hebrew, like any language, evolved through times, and the Masoretic people didn't saw themselves as the ones to vowel the text according to the time of Moses, But according to how it was evolved in the 2nd temple era or quite after.

There is one thing to claim a mistake here and there, and another thing to disrespect it completely.

Anyway, as I see it, there is room for any suggestion and for any reasonable "grammar" that has a nice consistency.

And it would be nice to see your way - using a verse that doesn't include theology in it - just a simple one, so you can show us your grammar vs. the Hebrew grammar books' grammar.
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Jason Hare
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Re: question about noun adjective and tense + Isaiah 7:14 "conceiving"

Post by Jason Hare »

@ducky

You're absolutely correct. My point is that the Masoretic tradition does two things: (1) it codifies the pronunciation that the family of the Masoretes was using at the time of its writing, which was surely not just used by their family; and, (2) it often shows even older forms (like you mention with וְיֹלַדְתְּ instead of the anticipated וְיֹלֶ֫דֶת). And, these older forms give us even more evidence that Hebrew underwent changes through the years!

Beyond that, I don't think it's productive to throw out the Masoretic tradition or to classify the grammars that have been written in extensive detail as something other than biblical Hebrew. I don't know how Hebrew was pronounced before the Exile, but it doesn't much matter to me. We need to have a consistent and "authoritative" way to read the text in order to transmit it to the next generation. We cannot teach Hebrew by just having people guess at syntactic structures and even at pronunciation. I feel that Karl essentially turns Hebrew into a guessing game, which is useless for pragmatics and for pedagogy — the two issues that most occupy me.
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Re: question about noun adjective and tense + Isaiah 7:14 "conceiving"

Post by ducky »

I agree, When we're talking about Hebrew grammar, then it is always the Tiberian way.
And if someone wants to learn another dialect - then he can do that in a specific way.
The Tiberian grammar and dialect were considered the most dignified one, and HaRambam himself supported his hands on it. And eventually, everyone followed it, and its pattern is the pattern that is used for the thing that is called Hebrew grammar.

But notice, that the Tiberian Hebrew is only used for the Grammar, but not for speaking. (we don't pronounce the Qamats, and not the Segol, and our Sheva is "e", and not "a", and so on...). So the common Sephardic way follows the Tiberian MT, and with that, its grammar - but pronounce the words according to its own way. And the same is with the Yemenite - in time they followed the Tiberian MT, but still pronouncing the words according to their own way.

But I think that we (or maybe just I) are getting to a whole different subject here which is not the subject of this thread.
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Re: question about noun adjective and tense + Isaiah 7:14 "conceiving"

Post by Isaac Fried »

Karl writes
Isaac Fried wrote ... הִנֵּה הָעַלְמָה הָרָה ...
The only logical response was to deny that עלמה meant “virgin”. The denial is clearly a religious response.
I am ready to agree with you that עַלְמָה may also mean virgin in the sense you give it. Still, as I simply understand it, Isaiah 7:14 says that the prophet (or another personality) married a virgin, she is pregnant, is going to give birth to a boy and name him Imanu El.
The verse does not say, certainly, again as I understand it, that the pregnant woman is still a virgin.
This is the gist of the matter.

Isaac Fried, Boston University
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Re: question about noun adjective and tense + Isaiah 7:14 "conceiving"

Post by kwrandolph »

ducky wrote: Sat Nov 28, 2020 1:02 pm
kwrandolph wrote: Sat Nov 28, 2020 9:39 am Here all I’m saying is history. Before some Jews started Christianity (it was started as a branch of Judaism) this verse was not controversial. After Christianity was started, when some Jews insisted that it meant “virgin” in relation to Jesus, only afterward do you have the pushback that it didn’t.
Even though it is tempting, I hold myself to not comment about it.
Let's keep these so-called "history-facts" aside.
This history is important in this discussion because it shows
• that the language was changed
• who changed the language, in this case the meaning of the noun
• why they changed the language
ducky wrote: Sat Nov 28, 2020 1:02 pm
kwrandolph wrote: Sat Nov 28, 2020 9:39 am
ducky wrote: Sat Nov 28, 2020 4:37 amAnd also, how does this verse would create a problem for the Jews. I mean, even if this word was really meant a "virgin" (and it's not) - the text says clearly that this birth will occur soon.
Not necessarily soon. “Soon” is a disputed claim.
My friend, just keep reading the text.
I do.
ducky wrote: Sat Nov 28, 2020 1:02 pm It is said in verse 16 that even before the baby would grow up to be a boy, Judea will be saved from its enemies (Aram and Israel).
So surely, that boy is to be born soon - in a few months (or at most, in nine months).
The prophesy doesn’t say “soon” or any other word indicating a soon fulfillment. All it says is “before” בטרם which can be fulfilled any time after the other events mentioned in the prophesy were fulfilled.
ducky wrote: Sat Nov 28, 2020 1:02 pm You cannot disconnect this verse from the rest of Isaiah's words. that's the whole point of that sign.
The sign was given to Ahaz in relation to the threat he's seeing at that moment, and the prophecy relates to that.
Isaiah specifically said “house of David”, meaning the Davidic dynasty, not limited to the present occupant of the throne.
ducky wrote: Sat Nov 28, 2020 1:02 pm And I also read about you seeing בית דוד in this verse as a change of direction. But this בית דוד is the same בית דוד that it is in verse 2 - the present house of Ahaz.
Read the whole texț—Syria and Ephraim planned to replace the Davidic dynasty with their own puppet. Isaiah’s answer was that they would not succeed.
ducky wrote: Sat Nov 28, 2020 1:02 pm I mean, no matter how you want to read it - this sign is still a sign for Ahaz and for the threat that he's facing - and what's important here, in this prophecy, is the link between the event and the sign. and the event is told specifically.
The prophetic sign doesn’t mention Ahaz, all it mentions is the “house of David”. The prophecy before verse 14 already told Ahaz that the Davidic dynasty wouldn’t be replaced. The sign was given to the “house of David” not to Ahaz personally. You need to keep that distinction in mind.
ducky wrote: Sat Nov 28, 2020 1:02 pm And by the way, a virgin giving birth to a god is also in Egyptian myths, Indian myths, Greek/Roman myths - and you can add this "other one" to the list as well if you want.
You talk about myths which are ahistorical, but there’s only one time with only one person in history, emphasize “history”, where there’s a name—Mary (Mariam)—and a date—present historians claim about 7 BC—when it happened. Distinguish between myth and history.
ducky wrote: Sat Nov 28, 2020 1:02 pm
kwrandolph wrote: Sat Nov 28, 2020 9:39 am
ducky wrote: Sat Nov 28, 2020 4:37 am What etymology? and what combination?
I already wrote it once, do you want me to repeat myself.
I read that. and it just seems to me as a common etymology.
I also emphasized that not once is the word used for anyone other than those who are expected to be virgins.
ducky wrote: Sat Nov 28, 2020 1:02 pm In the bible, there are plenty of cases where the word "virgin" is written. And it always uses the word בתולה.
Not true. בתולה is used for a woman getting married and becoming sexually active with her husband Isaiah 62:5 and one who is apparently a young widow Joel 1:8.
ducky wrote: Sat Nov 28, 2020 1:02 pm
kwrandolph wrote: Sat Nov 28, 2020 9:39 amFrom what I understand, Jason claims people followed grammar rules strictly, no exceptions. I question the “no exceptions”.

Jason claims that the grammars of Gesenius and Weingreen are accurate descriptions of Biblical Hebrew. I disagree. I see those grammars (which is what I was taught in class) are accurate descriptions of medieval Tiberian Hebrew. But that medieval Tiberian Hebrew differs significantly from Biblical Hebrew, especially in its grammar.
I think you and Jason just don't understand each other.
Read Jason’s own words below. His own words indicate that his main interest is not what exactly was Biblical Hebrew. Rather his main interest is in following a set pattern of interpretation and in teaching it.

My main interest is learning exactly the nature of the language at the time it was spoken and written. The conclusions from many scholars and myself is that the set pattern of interpretation that Jason teaches is not Biblical Hebrew. Therefore he deceives his students when he claims that he teaches them Biblical Hebrew.
ducky wrote: Sat Nov 28, 2020 1:02 pm Hebrew, like any language, evolved through times, and the Masoretic people didn't saw themselves as the ones to vowel the text according to the time of Moses, But according to how it was evolved in the 2nd temple era or quite after.
According to Waltke and O’Connor, the grammar, not just pronunciation, of late second temple era Hebrew significantly differed from Biblical Hebrew.
ducky wrote: Sat Nov 28, 2020 1:02 pm There is one thing to claim a mistake here and there, and another thing to disrespect it completely.
There are hundreds, if not thousands, of mistakes, which make the pointing untrustworthy. I’m talking about the meanings imparted by the points, not necessarily their pronunciations. It’s easier just to ignore them.
ducky wrote: Sat Nov 28, 2020 1:02 pm Anyway, as I see it, there is room for any suggestion and for any reasonable "grammar" that has a nice consistency.
I think Dr. Diethelm Michel and his students among university professors have the closest understanding to Biblical Hebrew that can be consistently applied to understanding all of Tanakh.

Jason Hare wrote: Sat Nov 28, 2020 3:30 pm Beyond that, I don't think it's productive to throw out the Masoretic tradition or to classify the grammars that have been written in extensive detail as something other than biblical Hebrew. … We need to have a consistent and "authoritative" way to read the text in order to transmit it to the next generation. … I feel that Karl essentially turns Hebrew into a guessing game, which is useless for pragmatics and for pedagogy — the two issues that most occupy me.
(emphasis mine)

My main interest is in getting an accurate understanding of the text, because how can anyone hope to transmit an accurate understanding of the text by using inaccurate information? Many scholars agree that the teachings of Gesenius and Weingreen are inaccurate to describe Biblical Hebrew.

Isaac Fried wrote: Sat Nov 28, 2020 5:46 pm
Karl writes
The only logical response was to deny that עלמה meant “virgin”. The denial is clearly a religious response.
I am ready to agree with you that עַלְמָה may also mean virgin in the sense you give it. Still, as I simply understand it, Isaiah 7:14 says that the prophet (or another personality) married a virgin, she is pregnant, is going to give birth to a boy and name him Imanu El.
The verse does not say, certainly, again as I understand it, that the pregnant woman is still a virgin.
This is the gist of the matter.
The reading of the verse is that the woman is still a virgin at the time she is pregnant.

Karl W. Randolph.
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Re: question about noun adjective and tense + Isaiah 7:14 "conceiving"

Post by Jason Hare »

kwrandolph wrote: Sun Nov 29, 2020 10:39 am This history is important in this discussion because it shows
• that the language was changed
• who changed the language, in this case the meaning of the noun
• why they changed the language
I will agree that the pronunciation was changed. I will NOT agree that the language changed. The grammar of Hebrew is the grammar of Hebrew, and even the Tiberian pronunciation represents a tradition that goes back long before them. They didn't just make things up.
kwrandolph wrote: Sun Nov 29, 2020 10:39 am The prophesy doesn’t say “soon” or any other word indicating a soon fulfillment. All it says is “before” בטרם which can be fulfilled any time after the other events mentioned in the prophesy were fulfilled.
But it talks about THAT BOY and THE LAND OF THE TWO KINGS YOU DREAD. How can you read it otherwise?
kwrandolph wrote: Sun Nov 29, 2020 10:39 am Isaiah specifically said “house of David”, meaning the Davidic dynasty, not limited to the present occupant of the throne.
Well, in that case, let's project it 2,000 years into the future! By all means!
kwrandolph wrote: Sun Nov 29, 2020 10:39 am Read the whole texț—Syria and Ephraim planned to replace the Davidic dynasty with their own puppet. Isaiah’s answer was that they would not succeed.
Syria and Ephraim means Rome and Jesus?
kwrandolph wrote: Sun Nov 29, 2020 10:39 am The prophetic sign doesn’t mention Ahaz, all it mentions is the “house of David”. The prophecy before verse 14 already told Ahaz that the Davidic dynasty wouldn’t be replaced. The sign was given to the “house of David” not to Ahaz personally. You need to keep that distinction in mind.
The sign is not the mystical birth of a baby from a virgin. The sign is a baby whose birth would signal the countdown to the end of the Syro-Ephraimite alliance that threatened to wipe Judah off the map.
kwrandolph wrote: Sun Nov 29, 2020 10:39 am You talk about myths which are ahistorical, but there’s only one time with only one person in history, emphasize “history”, where there’s a name—Mary (Mariam)—and a date—present historians claim about 7 BC—when it happened. Distinguish between myth and history.
Oh, has the birth been moved back to 7 B.C.E.? I guess in cases like these, you can move dates around freely (since they don't have to correspond to anything in history). In my new estimation, Jesus must have been born in 50 B.C.E. so that I can incorporate all of "details" of clearly true biographies. Just keep moving it back to make it sound more plausible. It has nothing to do with this prophecy, though, unless you can push it back to 500 B.C.E. instead of 50. Maybe 700 B.C.E. would fit the narrative. Perhaps Jesus was 740 years old when he was crucified, similar to Methuselah or Adam.

Why does any of this have relevance to Isaiah 7, which clearly gives its own context—the fall of the Syrian alliance with Ephraim (Israel) at the hands of the Assyrians.
kwrandolph wrote: Sun Nov 29, 2020 10:39 am Jason claims that the grammars of Gesenius and Weingreen are accurate descriptions of Biblical Hebrew. I disagree. I see those grammars (which is what I was taught in class) are accurate descriptions of medieval Tiberian Hebrew. But that medieval Tiberian Hebrew differs significantly from Biblical Hebrew, especially in its grammar.
Yet you don't have a system that can address the text as you read it. It cannot be taught. It cannot be passed on. There is no way to teach it to students, because it exists only in your brain. That isn't very useful for the rest of the world.
kwrandolph wrote: Sun Nov 29, 2020 10:39 am Read Jason’s own words below. His own words indicate that his main interest is not what exactly was Biblical Hebrew. Rather his main interest is in following a set pattern of interpretation and in teaching it.
My interest is getting people to read the text of the Bible. Period.
kwrandolph wrote: Sun Nov 29, 2020 10:39 am My main interest is learning exactly the nature of the language at the time it was spoken and written. The conclusions from many scholars and myself is that the set pattern of interpretation that Jason teaches is not Biblical Hebrew. Therefore he deceives his students when he claims that he teaches them Biblical Hebrew.
(Emphasis mine.) Nonsense.
kwrandolph wrote: Sun Nov 29, 2020 10:39 am According to Waltke and O’Connor, the grammar, not just pronunciation, of late second temple era Hebrew significantly differed from Biblical Hebrew.
That is true. The grammar that we find in the MISHNAH, not the grammar that we find in the BIBLE. The grammar had changed and is represented in texts that emerged from that period. The grammar of the Bible was not somehow altered by the Masoretes. You misread these authors (and others).
kwrandolph wrote: Sun Nov 29, 2020 10:39 am There are hundreds, if not thousands, of mistakes, which make the pointing untrustworthy. I’m talking about the meanings imparted by the points, not necessarily their pronunciations. It’s easier just to ignore them.
Not having points is even MORE unreliable. It's left to your personal interpretation, which isn't the most skilled.
kwrandolph wrote: Sun Nov 29, 2020 10:39 am My main interest is in getting an accurate understanding of the text, because how can anyone hope to transmit an accurate understanding of the text by using inaccurate information? Many scholars agree that the teachings of Gesenius and Weingreen are inaccurate to describe Biblical Hebrew.
Many scholars? Please present their papers. I'd be interested in reading them, since that is against the entire body of scholarship in Hebrew and Comparative Semitics (which you also oppose).
kwrandolph wrote: Sun Nov 29, 2020 10:39 am The reading of the verse is that the woman is still a virgin at the time she is pregnant.
The verse does not say "virgin." That is an ENGLISH word and is not an inherent meaning of the Hebrew. The passage is talking about a child born in the time of Isaiah. It is not about something hundreds of years later.
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Re: question about noun adjective and tense + Isaiah 7:14 "conceiving"

Post by Jason Hare »

The main misunderstanding seems to be that you think that "the grammar changed in the first century" means that they redid the grammar of the Bible. It's talking about the loss of vayyiqtol (which is in the Bible), the change from ms. endings in -im to -in (under Aramaic influence), the inclusion of a standardized gerund that replaced the infinitive construct in many situations, etc. There really was a different grammar in the late Second-Temple period. That's true, and we see it in the Mishnah, Baraita, and Tosafot, as well as much of the Midrash (as in the Midrash Rabbah). The grammar of the Hebrew of the period was different — as the result of natural linguistic processes, since the language was still being used.

The grammar of the Bible did not change. No one changed it. You're reading things into the sources that you're reading, not understanding what they are saying.

Much of the change that we see in the documents from the time has been rejected in the revivification of Hebrew as a spoken language. Modern Hebrew went back to the roots of the biblical language, jettisoning the nitpael and the -in endings. However, the language did not adopt the narrative past, which some argue was not part of the real spoken language but was only a feature of narrative.

You understand so little of the changes the language underwent because you refuse to read grammars, to read journals, to engage text beyond the Bible, to understand the history of the language's evolution. You are a purist and a contrarian who doesn't understand how intentionally maintaining a limited view keeps your growth stifled and prevents you from seeing that the rest of the world isn't as ignorant as you think we are.
Jason Hare
Tel Aviv, Israel
www.thehebrewcafe.com
Nihil est peius iis, qui paulum aliquid ultra primas litteras
progressi falsam sibi scientiæ persusionem induerunt.

— Quintilian
kwrandolph
Posts: 1238
Joined: Sun Sep 29, 2013 12:51 am

Re: question about noun adjective and tense + Isaiah 7:14 "conceiving"

Post by kwrandolph »

Jason Hare wrote: Sun Nov 29, 2020 11:46 am
kwrandolph wrote: Sun Nov 29, 2020 10:39 am This history is important in this discussion because it shows
• that the language was changed
• who changed the language, in this case the meaning of the noun
• why they changed the language
I will agree that the pronunciation was changed.
I’m not talking about the pronunciations, rather the grammar and the meanings of some words.
Jason Hare wrote: Sun Nov 29, 2020 11:46 amI will NOT agree that the language changed.
See below. You contradict yourself.
Jason Hare wrote: Sun Nov 29, 2020 11:46 amThe grammar of Hebrew is the grammar of Hebrew, and even the Tiberian pronunciation represents a tradition that goes back long before them. They didn't just make things up.
Point to me anywhere that I ever wrote that the Tiberian Masoretes made things up, other than the points themselves which they used to record the sounds they heard.
Jason Hare wrote: Sun Nov 29, 2020 11:46 am
kwrandolph wrote: Sun Nov 29, 2020 10:39 am The prophesy doesn’t say “soon” or any other word indicating a soon fulfillment. All it says is “before” בטרם which can be fulfilled any time after the other events mentioned in the prophesy were fulfilled.
But it talks about THAT BOY and THE LAND OF THE TWO KINGS YOU DREAD. How can you read it otherwise?
By reading it literally.
Jason Hare wrote: Sun Nov 29, 2020 11:46 am
kwrandolph wrote: Sun Nov 29, 2020 10:39 am Isaiah specifically said “house of David”, meaning the Davidic dynasty, not limited to the present occupant of the throne.
Well, in that case, let's project it 2,000 years into the future! By all means!
The only problem with that today is that the genealogical records have been lost. We no longer know who is of the house of David. From what I read, the genealogical records were kept in the temple, and we know what happened to the temple in 70 AD.
Jason Hare wrote: Sun Nov 29, 2020 11:46 am
kwrandolph wrote: Sun Nov 29, 2020 10:39 am Read the whole texț—Syria and Ephraim planned to replace the Davidic dynasty with their own puppet. Isaiah’s answer was that they would not succeed.
Syria and Ephraim means Rome and Jesus?
Don’t be silly.
Jason Hare wrote: Sun Nov 29, 2020 11:46 am
kwrandolph wrote: Sun Nov 29, 2020 10:39 am Jason claims that the grammars of Gesenius and Weingreen are accurate descriptions of Biblical Hebrew. I disagree. I see those grammars (which is what I was taught in class) are accurate descriptions of medieval Tiberian Hebrew. But that medieval Tiberian Hebrew differs significantly from Biblical Hebrew, especially in its grammar.
Yet you don't have a system that can address the text as you read it.
You have a copy of my dictionary. In the back, in the appendixes, there is a systematic grammar that can be applied to all of Tanakh. Have you looked?
Jason Hare wrote: Sun Nov 29, 2020 11:46 amMy interest is getting people to read the text of the Bible. Period.
And that’s where an accurate understanding of the language is vital.
Jason Hare wrote: Sun Nov 29, 2020 11:46 am
kwrandolph wrote: Sun Nov 29, 2020 10:39 am According to Waltke and O’Connor, the grammar, not just pronunciation, of late second temple era Hebrew significantly differed from Biblical Hebrew.
That is true. The grammar that we find in the MISHNAH, not the grammar that we find in the BIBLE. The grammar had changed and is represented in texts that emerged from that period. The grammar of the Bible was not somehow altered by the Masoretes. You misread these authors (and others).
The reason this is important is because the Jews of that time and later read Tanakh, not with Biblical grammar, but with the grammar of their time. Reading it with the wrong grammar can lead to hundreds, if not thousands, of mistakes when recorded with the Masoretic points.
Jason Hare wrote: Sun Nov 29, 2020 11:46 am
kwrandolph wrote: Sun Nov 29, 2020 10:39 am There are hundreds, if not thousands, of mistakes, which make the pointing untrustworthy. I’m talking about the meanings imparted by the points, not necessarily their pronunciations. It’s easier just to ignore them.
Not having points is even MORE unreliable. It's left to your personal interpretation, which isn't the most skilled.
There are the consonantal texts that give indications as to how to read them, then for finer tuning, contexts as well. Those two together often give readings that differ from readings indicated by the Masoretic points.
Jason Hare wrote: Sun Nov 29, 2020 11:46 am
kwrandolph wrote: Sun Nov 29, 2020 10:39 am My main interest is in getting an accurate understanding of the text, because how can anyone hope to transmit an accurate understanding of the text by using inaccurate information? Many scholars agree that the teachings of Gesenius and Weingreen are inaccurate to describe Biblical Hebrew.
Many scholars? Please present their papers. I'd be interested in reading them,
Do you have access to academia.edu? Do you have access to Waltke and O’Connor’s book? How about J. Wash Watts? In those and more places you’ll find discussions of grammatical systems other than that of Gesenius and Weingreen. Yes, there are journal articles there.
Jason Hare wrote: Sun Nov 29, 2020 11:55 am The main misunderstanding seems to be that you think that "the grammar changed in the first century" means that they redid the grammar of the Bible.
Nope. But it changed how people understood the Bible.
Jason Hare wrote: Sun Nov 29, 2020 11:46 amThere really was a different grammar in the late Second-Temple period. That's true, and we see it in the Mishnah, Baraita, and Tosafot, as well as much of the Midrash (as in the Midrash Rabbah). The grammar of the Hebrew of the period was different — as the result of natural linguistic processes, since the language was still being used.
Yes, the language was still being used. I don’t know of anyone who disagrees with that. But it was a learned, second language that nobody spoke natively.
Jason Hare wrote: Sun Nov 29, 2020 11:46 amYou understand so little of the changes the language underwent because you refuse to read grammars, … to engage text beyond the Bible, …. You are a purist … who doesn't understand how intentionally maintaining a limited view keeps your growth stifled and prevents you from seeing that the rest of the world isn't as ignorant as you think we are.
Yes, I am a purist, but for a good reason—to avoid the common problem of cognate language cross-contamination. You don’t recognize that you have that problem.

For example, when I first read the Jehoash forgery, my first reaction was that it felt weird, like a foreigner speaking English with an accent but I can’t place the accent. But when I read it a few times looking for obvious examples of forgery, I found that study was affecting my understanding of Biblical Hebrew. So I stopped and haven’t looked at it in years. That’s an example of cognate language cross-contamination.

The question is not one of knowledge vs. ignorance, rather pure vs. contaminated knowledge of Biblical Hebrew.

Karl W. Randolph.
Isaac Fried
Posts: 1776
Joined: Sat Sep 28, 2013 8:32 pm

Re: question about noun adjective and tense + Isaiah 7:14 "conceiving"

Post by Isaac Fried »

Karl writes
And that’s where an accurate understanding of the language is vital.
The accurate understanding of biblical Hebrew never ceased over the millennia.
You have a copy of my dictionary. In the back, in the appendixes, there is a systematic grammar that can be applied to all of Tanakh. Have you looked?
Is this "systematic grammar" certified to be correct?
The reason this is important is because the Jews of that time and later read Tanakh, not with Biblical grammar, but with the grammar of their time. Reading it with the wrong grammar can lead to hundreds, if not thousands, of mistakes when recorded with the Masoretic points.
Does this mean that some of us even now who read Tanakh not with Biblical grammar but with English grammar possibly make hundreds, if not thousands, of mistakes?
Nope. But it changed how people understood the Bible.
Different people aim to understand the Bible differently according to their different backgrounds.

Isaac Fried, Boston University
www.hebrewetymology.com
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