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  Discovery Box

Lamentations 5:4


5:4 We must pay money 1  for our own water; 2 

we must buy our own wood at a steep price. 3 

Lamentations 5:9


5:9 At the risk 4  of our lives 5  we get our food 6 

because robbers lurk 7  in the countryside. 8 

1 tn Heb “silver.” The term “silver” is a synecdoche of species (= silver) for general (= money).

2 tn Heb “We drink our water for silver.”

3 tn Heb “our wood comes for a price.”

4 tn Heb “at the cost of our lives.” The preposition ב (bet) here denotes purchase price paid (e.g., Gen 30:16; Exod 34:20; 2 Sam 3:14; 24:24) (BDB 90 s.v. בְּ 3.a). The expression בְּנַפְשֵׁנוּ (bÿnafshenu) means “at the risk of our lives.” Similar expressions include בְנַפְשׁוֹ (bÿnafsho, “at the cost of his life,” 1 Kgs 2:23; Prov 7:23) and בְּנַפְשׁוֹתָם (bÿnafshotam, “at peril of their lives,” 2 Sam 23:17).

5 tn Heb “our soul.” The noun נֶפֶשׁ (nefesh, “soul”) is used as a metonymy (= soul) of association (= life) (e.g., Gen 44:30; Exod 21:23; 2 Sam 14:7; Jon 1:14).

6 tn Heb “bread.” The term “bread” is a synecdoche of specific (= bread) for the general (= food).

7 tn Heb “because of the sword.” The term “sword” is a metonymy of instrument (= sword) for the persons who use the instrument (= murderers or marauders).

8 tn Heb “the wilderness.”

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