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ISBE: SEARCHINGS
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Searchings

SEARCHINGS [ISBE]

SEARCHINGS - sur'-chingz (chiqre (lebh), from chaqar, to "search," "explore," "examine thoroughly"): In the song of Deborah the Reubenites are taunted because their great resolves of heart, chiqeqe lebh, led to nothing but great "searchings" of heart, chiqre lebh, and no activity other than to remain among their flocks (Jdg 5:15 f). The first of the two Hebrew expressions so emphatically contrasted (though questioned by commentators on the authority of 5 manuscripts as a corruption of the second) can with reasonable certainty be interpreted "acts prescribed by one's understanding" (compare the expressions chakham lebh, nebhon lebh, in which the heart is looked upon as the seat of the understanding). The second expression may mean either irresolution or hesitation based on selfish motives, as the heart was also considered the seat of the feelings, or answerability to God (compare Jer 17:10; Prov 25:3); this rendering would explain the form liphelaghoth in Jdg 5:16, literally, `for the water courses of Reuben, great the searchings of heart!'

Nathan Isaacs




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