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(0.20) (Jer 28:1)

sn The dating here is very full and precise. “In that same year” ties the events here in with the messages that Jeremiah delivered to the envoys, the king and his court, and the priests and people while wearing the yoke symbolizing servitude to Nebuchadnezzar. The text wants to show that the events here transpired shortly after those in Jer 27 and that Jeremiah is still wearing the yoke. The supplying of the precise month is important because the end of the chapter will show that Jeremiah’s prophecy regarding Hananiah was fulfilled two months later. Hence Jeremiah is the true prophet, and Hananiah and the others (27:16) are false. The supplying of the year is perhaps significant because the author states in 51:59 that Zedekiah went to Babylon that same year, probably to pledge his loyalty. The suggestion lies ready to hand that the events of this chapter and the preceding one lead to his dismissal of the false prophet Hananiah’s advice and the acceptance of Jeremiah’s.

(0.20) (Jer 25:15)

sn “Drinking from the cup of wrath” is a common figure to represent being punished by God. Isaiah had used it earlier to refer to the punishment that Judah was to suffer and from which God would deliver her (Isa 51:17, 22). Jeremiah’s contemporary Habakkuk uses it of Babylon “pouring out its wrath” on the nations and in turn being forced to drink the bitter cup herself (Hab 2:15-16). In Jer 51:7 the Lord will identify Babylon as the cup that makes the nations stagger. In v. 16 drinking from the cup will be identified with the sword (i.e., wars) that the Lord will send against the nations. Babylon is also to be identified as the sword (cf. Jer 51:20-23). What is being alluded to in highly figurative language is the judgment that the Lord will wreak through the Babylonians on the nations listed here. The prophecy given here in symbolical form is thus an expansion of the one in vv. 9-11.

(0.20) (Jer 23:31)

sn Jer 23:30-33 are filled with biting sarcasm. The verses all begin with the words “Behold, I am against the prophets who…” and go on to describe their reprehensible behavior. They “steal” one another’s messages, which the Lord sarcastically calls “my words” (The passage shows that they are not; compare Marc Anthony’s use of “noble” to describe the ignoble men who killed Caesar). Here the idiom translated “to use their own tongue” really refers to taking something in preparation for action, i.e., “they take their tongue” and “declare.” The verb “declare” is only used here and is derived from the idiom “oracle of,” which is almost universally used in the idiom “oracle of the Lord,” which occurs 176 times in Jeremiah. That is, it is their tongue that is “declaring not his mouth” (v. 16). Moreover, in the report of what they “declare,” the Lord has left out the qualifying “of the Lord” to suggest the delusive nature of their message, i.e., they mislead people into believing that their message is from the Lord. Elsewhere in the discussion of the issue of false prophecy the Lord will use the full formula (Ezek 13:6-7). How ironic that their “Oracle of…” is punctuated by the triple “Oracle of the Lord” (vv. 30, 31, 32; translated here “I, the Lord, affirm that…”).

(0.20) (Jer 23:17)

tc The translation follows the Greek version. The Hebrew text reads, “who reject me, ‘The Lord has spoken, “Things…”’” The Greek version is to be preferred here because of (1) the parallelism of the lines “reject what the Lord has said” // “follow the stubborn inclinations of their own hearts;” (2) the preceding context that speaks of “visions of their own imaginations, not what the Lord has given them;” (3) the following context that denies that they have ever had access to the Lord’s secrets; (4) the general contexts earlier regarding false prophecy where rejection of the Lord’s word is in view (6:14 [see there v. 10]; 8:11 [see there v. 9]); and (5) the meter of the poetic lines (the Hebrew meter is 3/5/4/3; the meter presupposed by the translation is 5/3/4/3 with the 3’s being their words). The difference is one of vocalization of the same consonants. The vocalization of the MT is יְהוָה מְנַאֲצַי דִּבֶּר [menaʾatsay dibber yehvah]; the Hebrew Vorlage behind the Greek would be vocalized as מְנַאֲצֵי דְּבַר יְהוָה (menaʾatse devar yehvah).

(0.20) (Jer 23:5)

sn This passage and the parallel in Jer 33:15 are part of a growing number of prayers and prophecies regarding an ideal ruler to come forth from the Davidic line who will bring the justice, security, and well-being that the continuing line of Davidic rulers did not. Though there were periodic kings like Josiah who did fulfill the ideals set forth in Jer 22:3 (see Jer 22:15), by and large they were more like Jehoiakim, who did not (see Jer 22:13). Hence the Lord brought to an end the Davidic rule. The potential for the ideal, however, remained because of God’s promise to David (2 Sam 7:16). The Davidic line became like a tree which was cut down, leaving only a stump. But from that stump God would bring forth a “shoot,” a “sprig” which would fulfill the ideals of kingship. See Isa 11:1-6; Zech 3:8; and 6:12 for this metaphor and compare Dan 4:14-15, 23, 26 for a different but related use of the metaphor.

(0.20) (Isa 9:6)

tn This title must not be taken in an anachronistic Trinitarian sense. (To do so would be theologically problematic, for the “Son” is the messianic king and is distinct in his person from God the “Father.”) Rather, in its original context the title pictures the king as the protector of his people. For a similar use of “father” see Isa 22:21 and Job 29:16. This figurative, idiomatic use of “father” is not limited to the Bible. In a Phoenician inscription (ca. 850-800 b.c.) the ruler Kilamuwa declares: “To some I was a father, to others I was a mother.” In another inscription (ca. 800 b.c.) the ruler Azitawadda boasts that the god Baal made him “a father and a mother” to his people. (See ANET 499-500.) The use of “everlasting” might suggest the deity of the king (as the one who has total control over eternity), but Isaiah and his audience may have understood the term as royal hyperbole emphasizing the king’s long reign or enduring dynasty (for examples of such hyperbolic language used of the Davidic king, see 1 Kgs 1:31; Pss 21:4-6; 61:6-7; 72:5, 17). The New Testament indicates that the hyperbolic language (as in the case of the title “Mighty God”) is literally realized in the ultimate fulfillment of the prophecy, for Jesus will rule eternally.

(0.20) (Isa 7:14)

tn Traditionally, “virgin.” Because this verse from Isaiah is quoted in Matt 1:23 in connection with Jesus’ birth, the Isaiah passage has been regarded since the earliest Christian times as a prophecy of Christ’s virgin birth. Much debate has taken place over the best way to translate this Hebrew term, although ultimately one’s view of the doctrine of the virgin birth of Christ is unaffected. Though the Hebrew word used here (עַלְמָה, ʿalmah) can sometimes refer to a woman who is a virgin (Gen 24:43), it does not carry this meaning inherently. The word is simply the feminine form of the corresponding masculine noun עֶלֶם (ʿelem, “young man”; cf. 1 Sam 17:56; 20:22). The Aramaic and Ugaritic cognate terms are both used of women who are not virgins. The word seems to pertain to age, not sexual experience, and would normally be translated “young woman.” The LXX translator(s) who later translated the Book of Isaiah into Greek sometime between the second and first century b.c., however, rendered the Hebrew term by the more specific Greek word παρθένος (parthenos), which does mean “virgin” in a technical sense. This is the Greek term that also appears in the citation of Isa 7:14 in Matt 1:23. Therefore, regardless of the meaning of the term in the OT context, in the NT Matthew’s usage of the Greek term παρθένος clearly indicates that from his perspective a virgin birth has taken place.

(0.20) (Isa 1:27)

tn Heb “Zion will be ransomed with justice.” Both cola in this verse end with similar terms: justice and righteousness (each preceded by the preposition בְּ [be]). At issue is whether these virtues describe the means or result of the deliverance and whether they delineate God’s justice/righteousness or that of the covenant people. If the righteousness of Israelite returnees is in view, the point seems to be that the reestablishment of Zion as a center of justice (God’s people living in conformity with God’s demand for equity and justice) will deliver the city from its past humiliation and restore it to a place of prominence (see 2:2-4; cf. E. Kissane, Isaiah, 1:19). Most scholars conclude that “righteousness and “justice” refers to God alone (J. Ridderbos, Isaiah [BSC], 50; J. Watts, Isaiah [WBC], 1:25; E. J. Young, Isaiah [NICOT], 1:89; cf. NLT, TEV) or serves as a double reference to both divine and human justice and righteousness (J. A. Motyer, The Prophecy of Isaiah, 51; J. N. Oswalt, Isaiah [NICOT], 1:10; H. Wildberger, Isaiah, 1:72). If it refers to both sides of the coin, these terms highlight the objective divine work of redemption and the subjective human response of penitence (Motyer, 51).

(0.20) (Isa 1:17)

tn The precise meaning of this line is uncertain. The translation assumes an emendation of חָמוֹץ (khamots, “oppressor [?]”) to חָמוּץ (khamuts, “oppressed”), a passive participle from II חָמַץ (khamats, “oppress”; HALOT 329 s.v. II חמץ) and takes the verb II אָשַׁר (ʾashar) in the sense of “make happy” (the delocutive Piel, meaning “call/pronounce happy,” is metonymic here, referring to actually effecting happiness). The parallelism favors this interpretation, for the next two lines speak of positive actions on behalf of the destitute. The other option is to retain the MT pointing and translate, “set right the oppressor,” but the nuance “set right” is not clearly attested elsewhere for the verb I אשׁר. This verb does appear as a participle in Isa 3:12 and 9:16 with the meaning “to lead or guide.” If it can mean to “lead” or “rebuke/redirect” in this verse, the prophet could be contrasting this appeal for societal reformation (v. 17c) with a command to reorder their personal lives (v. 17a-b). J. A. Motyer (The Prophecy of Isaiah, 47) suggests that these three statements (v. 17a-c) provide “the contrast between the two ends of imperfect society, the oppressor and the needy, the one inflicting and the other suffering the hurt. Isaiah looks for a transformed society wherever it needs transforming.”

(0.20) (Gen 9:25)

sn Cursed be Canaan. The curse is pronounced on Canaan, not Ham. Noah sees a problem in Ham’s character, and on the basis of that he delivers a prophecy about the future descendants who will live in slavery to such things and then be controlled by others. (For more on the idea of slavery in general, see E. M. Yamauchi, “Slaves of God,” BETS 9 [1966]: 31-49). In a similar way Jacob pronounced oracles about his sons based on their revealed character (see Gen 49). Wenham points out that “Ham’s indiscretion towards his father may easily be seen as a type of the later behavior of the Egyptians and Canaanites. Noah’s curse on Canaan thus represents God’s sentence on the sins of the Canaanites, which their forefather Ham had exemplified.” He points out that the Canaanites are seen as sexually aberrant and Lev 18:3 describes Egypt and Canaan, both descendants of Ham, as having abominable practices. See G. Wenham, Genesis vol. 1 (WBC), 202.

(0.18) (Isa 8:10)

sn In these vv. 9-10 the tone shifts abruptly from judgment to hope. Hostile nations like Assyria may attack God’s people, but eventually they will be destroyed, for God is with his people, sometimes to punish, but ultimately to vindicate. In addition to being a reminder of God’s presence in the immediate crisis faced by Ahaz and Judah, Immanuel (whose name is echoed in this concluding statement) was a guarantee of the nation’s future greatness in fulfillment of God’s covenantal promises. Eventually God would deliver his people from the hostile nations (vv. 9-10) through another child, an ideal Davidic ruler who would embody God’s presence in a special way (see 9:6-7). Jesus the Messiah is the fulfillment of the Davidic ideal prophesied by Isaiah, the one whom Immanuel foreshadowed. Through the miracle of the incarnation he is literally “God with us.” Matthew realized this and applied Isaiah’s ancient prophecy of Immanuel’s birth to Jesus (Matt 1:22-23). The first Immanuel was a reminder to the people of God’s presence and a guarantee of a greater child to come who would manifest God’s presence in an even greater way. The second Immanuel is “God with us” in a heightened and infinitely superior sense. He “fulfills” Isaiah’s Immanuel prophecy by bringing the typology intended by God to realization and by filling out or completing the pattern designed by God. Of course, in the ultimate fulfillment of the type, the incarnate Immanuel’s mother must be a virgin, so Matthew uses a Greek term (παρθένος, parthenos), which carries that technical meaning (in contrast to the Hebrew word עַלְמָה [ʿalmah], which has the more general meaning “young woman”). Matthew draws similar analogies between NT and OT events in 2:15, 18. The linking of these passages by analogy is termed “fulfillment.” In 2:15 God calls Jesus, his perfect Son, out of Egypt, just as he did his son Israel in the days of Moses, an historical event referred to in Hos 11:1. In so doing he makes it clear that Jesus is the ideal Israel prophesied by Isaiah (see Isa 49:3), sent to restore wayward Israel (see Isa 49:5, cf. Matt 1:21). In 2:18 Herod’s slaughter of the infants is another illustration of the oppressive treatment of God’s people by foreign tyrants. Herod’s actions are analogous to those of the Assyrians, who deported the Israelites, causing the personified land to lament as inconsolably as a mother robbed of her little ones (Jer 31:15).

(0.17) (1Jo 4:1)

sn Test the spirits. Since in the second half of the present verse the author mentions “false prophets” who have “gone out into the world,” it appears highly probable that his concept of testing the spirits is drawn from the OT concept of testing a prophet to see whether he is a false prophet or a true one. The procedure for testing a prophet is found in Deut 13:2-6 and 18:15-22. An OT prophet was to be tested on the basis of (a) whether or not his predictive prophecies came true (Deut 18:22) and (b) whether or not he advocated idolatry (Deut 13:1-3). In the latter case the people of Israel are warned that even if the prophet should perform an authenticating sign or wonder, his truth or falsity is still to be judged on the basis of his claims, that is, whether or not he advocates idolatry. Here in 1 John the idea of “testing the spirits” comes closer to the second OT example of “testing the prophets” mentioned above. According to 1 John 4:2-3, the spirits are to be tested on the basis of their christological confession: The person motivated by the Spirit of God will confess Jesus as the Christ who has come in the flesh, while the person motivated by the spirit of deceit will not confess Jesus and is therefore not from God. This comes close to the idea expressed by Paul in 1 Cor 12:3 where the person speaking charismatic utterances is also to be judged on the basis of his christological confession: “So I want you to understand that no one speaking by the Spirit of God says, ‘Jesus is cursed,’ and no one can say ‘Jesus is Lord,’ except by the Holy Spirit.”

(0.17) (Luk 3:16)

sn With the Holy Spirit and fire. There are differing interpretations for this phrase regarding the number of baptisms and their nature. (1) Some see one baptism here, and this can be divided further into two options. (a) The baptism of the Holy Spirit and fire could refer to the cleansing, purifying work of the Spirit in the individual believer through salvation and sanctification, or (b) it could refer to two different results of Christ’s ministry: Some accept Christ and are baptized with the Holy Spirit, but some reject him and receive judgment. (2) Other interpreters see two baptisms here: The baptism of the Holy Spirit refers to the salvation Jesus brings at his first advent, in which believers receive the Holy Spirit, and the baptism of fire refers to the judgment Jesus will bring upon the world at his second coming. One must take into account both the image of fire and whether individual or corporate baptism is in view. A decision is not easy on either issue. The image of fire is used to refer to both eternal judgment (e.g., Matt 25:41) and the power of the Lord’s presence to purge and cleanse his people (e.g., Isa 4:4-5). The pouring out of the Spirit at Pentecost, a fulfillment of this prophecy no matter which interpretation is taken, had both individual and corporate dimensions. It is possible that since Holy Spirit and fire are governed by a single preposition in Greek, the one-baptism view may be more likely, but this is not certain. Simply put, there is no consensus view in scholarship at this time on the best interpretation of this passage.

(0.17) (Mat 3:11)

sn With the Holy Spirit and fire. There are differing interpretations for this phrase regarding the number of baptisms and their nature. (1) Some see one baptism here, and this can be divided further into two options. (a) The baptism of the Holy Spirit and fire could refer to the cleansing, purifying work of the Spirit in the individual believer through salvation and sanctification, or (b) it could refer to two different results of Christ’s ministry: Some accept Christ and are baptized with the Holy Spirit, but some reject him and receive judgment. (2) Other interpreters see two baptisms here: The baptism of the Holy Spirit refers to the salvation Jesus brings at his first advent, in which believers receive the Holy Spirit, and the baptism of fire refers to the judgment Jesus will bring upon the world at his second coming. One must take into account both the image of fire and whether individual or corporate baptism is in view. A decision is not easy on either issue. The image of fire is used to refer to both eternal judgment (e.g., Matt 25:41) and the power of the Lord’s presence to purge and cleanse his people (e.g., Isa 4:4-5). The pouring out of the Spirit at Pentecost, a fulfillment of this prophecy no matter which interpretation is taken, had both individual and corporate dimensions. It is possible that since Holy Spirit and fire are governed by a single preposition in Greek, the one-baptism view may be more likely, but this is not certain. Simply put, there is no consensus view in scholarship at this time on the best interpretation of this passage.

(0.17) (1Sa 18:10)

tn Or “he raved.” This same construction appears in 1 Sam 10:10 “the spirit of God rushed upon him and then he prophesied in their midst.” It is important to consider the agent affecting Saul, the verb describing his actions, and the broader cultural background. The phrase רוּחַ אֱלֹהִים (ruakh ʾelohim) could mean “a divine wind/spirit,” “a spirit from God,” or “the spirit of God.” Unlike 1 Sam 10:10, this case involves a harmful, or evil, spirit. The range of meaning of רָעָה (raʿah) can mean either harm or evil, and here indicates that this spirit’s purpose is to afflict Saul. The verb וַיִּתְנַבֵּא (vayyitnabbeʾ) is a Hitpael of the root נָבָא (nabaʾ) which means “to prophesy” in both the Niphal and the Hitpael. The difference may well be that the Niphal refers primarily to acting as a spokesman, while the Hitpael reflects an accompanying ecstatic experience on the part of the prophet (cf. 1 Sam 10:6; 19:24). 1 Kgs 18:29 also describes the antics of the prophets of Baal with the Hitpael of the root נָבָא (nabaʾ). Ecstatic experiences or expressions were sometimes associated with prophecy in the broader West Semitic culture as well as in the Israel. Some translations focus on the presumed outward effects of the afflicting spirit on Saul and render the verb “he raged” or “he raved” (NASB, ESV, NLT, NRSV). Although most biblical references to Israel’s prophets do not involve ecstatic experiences, the original audience would probably not have made a distinction here, that is, “raving” and “prophesying” would not have been considered alternatives.

(0.15) (2Pe 1:19)

tn The comparative adjective βεβαιότερον (bebaioteron) is the complement to the object τὸν προφητικὸν λόγον (ton prophētikon logon). As such, the construction almost surely has the force “The prophetic word is (more certain/altogether certain)—and this is something that we all have.” Many scholars prefer to read the construction as saying “we have the prophetic word made more sure,” but such a nuance is unparalleled in object-complement constructions (when the construction has this force, ποιέω [poieō] is present [as in 2 Pet 1:10]). The meaning, as construed in the translation, is that the Bible (in this case, the OT) that these believers had in their hands was a thoroughly reliable guide. Whether it was more certain than was even Peter’s experience on the Mount of Transfiguration depends on whether the adjective should be taken as a true comparative (“more certain”) or as an elative (“very certain, altogether certain”). Some would categorically object to any experience functioning as a confirmation of the scriptures and hence would tend to give the adjective a comparative force. Yet the author labors to show that his gospel is trustworthy precisely because he was an eyewitness of this great event. Further, to say that the OT scriptures (the most likely meaning of “the prophetic word”) were more trustworthy an authority than an apostle’s own experience of Christ is both to misconstrue how prophecy took place in the OT (did not the prophets have visions or other experiences?) and to deny the final revelation of God in Christ (cf. Heb 1:2). In sum, since syntactically the meaning that “we have confirmed the prophetic word by our experience” is improbable, and since contextually the meaning that “we have something that is a more reliable authority than experience, namely, the Bible” is unlikely, we are left with the meaning “we have a very reliable authority, the Old Testament, as a witness to Christ’s return.” No comparison is thus explicitly made. This fits both the context and normal syntax quite well. The introductory καί (kai) suggests that the author is adding to his argument. He makes the statement that Christ will return, and backs it up with two points: (1) Peter himself (as well as the other apostles) was an eyewitness to the Transfiguration, which is a precursor to the Parousia; and (2) the Gentile believers, who were not on the Mount of Transfiguration, nevertheless have the Old Testament, a wholly reliable authority that also promises the return of Christ.

(0.15) (2Pe 1:15)

sn There are various interpretations of v. 15. For example, the author could be saying simply, “I will make every effort that you remember these things.” But the collocation of σπουδάζω (spoudazō) with μνήνη (mnēnē) suggests a more specific image. R. Bauckham (Jude, 2 Peter [WBC], 201-2) is right when he notes that these two words together suggest a desire to write some sort of letter or testament. Most commentators recognize the difficulty in seeing the future verb σπουδάσω (spoudasō) as referring to 2 Peter itself (the present or aorist would have been expected, i.e., “I have made every effort,” or “I am making every effort”). Some have suggested that Mark’s Gospel is in view. The difficulty with this is threefold: (1) Mark is probably to be dated before 2 Peter, (2) early patristic testimony seems to imply that Peter was the unwitting source behind Mark’s Gospel; and (3) “these things” would seem to refer, in the least, to the prophecy about Peter’s death (absent in Mark). A more plausible suggestion might be that the author was thinking of the ending of John’s Gospel. This is possible because (1) John 21:18-19 is the only other place in the NT that refers to Peter’s death; indeed, it fleshes out the cryptic statement in v. 14 a bit more; (2) both 2 Peter and John were apparently written to Gentiles in and around Asia Minor; (3) both books were probably written after Paul’s death and perhaps even to Paul’s churches (cf. 2 Pet 3:1-2, 15-16); and (4) John 21 gives the appearance of being added to the end of a finished work. There is thus some possibility that this final chapter was added at the author’s request, in part to encourage Gentile Christians to face impending persecution, knowing that the martyrdom of even (Paul and) Peter was within the purview of God’s sovereignty. That 2 Pet 1:15 alludes to John 21 is of course by no means certain, but remains at least the most plausible of the suggestions put forth thus far.

(0.15) (Amo 1:1)

sn This refers to a well-known earthquake that occurred during the first half of the 8th century b.c. According to a generally accepted dating system, Uzziah was a co-regent with his father Amaziah from 792-767 b.c. and ruled independently from 767-740 b.c. Jeroboam II was a co-regent with his father Joash from 793-782 b.c. and ruled independently from 782-753 b.c. Since only Uzziah and Jeroboam are mentioned in the introduction it is likely that Amos’ mission to Israel and the earthquake which followed occurred between 767-753 b.c. The introduction validates the genuine character of Amos’ prophetic ministry in at least two ways. First, Amos was not a native Israelite or a prophet by trade. Rather he was a herdsman in Tekoa, located in Judah. His mere presence in the northern kingdom as a prophet was evidence that he had been called by God (see 7:14-15). Second, the mighty earthquake shortly after Amos’ ministry would have been interpreted as an omen or signal of approaching judgment. The clearest references to an earthquake are 1:1 and 9:1, 5. It is possible that the verb הָפַךְ (hafakh, “overturn”) at 3:13-15; 4:11; 6:11, and 8:8 also refers to an earthquake, as might the descriptions at 2:13 and 6:9-10. Evidence of a powerful earthquake has been correlated with a destruction layer at Hazor and other sites. Its lasting impact is evident by its mention in Zech 14:5 and 2 Chr 26:16-21. Earthquake imagery appears in later prophets as well (cf. D. N. Freedman and A. Welch, “Amos’s Earthquake and Israelite Prophecy,” Scripture and Other Artifacts, 188-98). On the other hand, some of these verses in Amos could allude to the devastation that would be caused by the imminent military invasion.

(0.15) (Isa 9:6)

tn גִּבּוֹר (gibbor) is probably an attributive adjective (“mighty God”), though one might translate “God is a warrior” or “God is mighty.” Scholars have interpreted this title in two ways. A number of them have argued that the title portrays the king as God’s representative on the battlefield, whom God empowers in a supernatural way (see J. H. Hayes and S. A. Irvine, Isaiah, 181-82). They contend that this sense seems more likely in the original context of the prophecy. They would suggest that having read the NT, we might in retrospect interpret this title as indicating the coming king’s deity, but it is unlikely that Isaiah or his audience would have understood the title in such a bold way. Ps 45:6 addresses the Davidic king as “God” because he ruled and fought as God’s representative on earth. Ancient Near Eastern art and literature picture gods training kings for battle, bestowing special weapons, and intervening in battle. According to Egyptian propaganda, the Hittites described Rameses II as follows: “No man is he who is among us, It is Seth great-of-strength, Baal in person; Not deeds of man are these his doings, They are of one who is unique” (See Miriam Lichtheim, Ancient Egyptian Literature, 2:67). According to proponents of this view, Isa 9:6 probably envisions a similar kind of response when friends and foes alike look at the Davidic king in full battle regalia. When the king’s enemies oppose him on the battlefield, they are, as it were, fighting against God himself. The other option is to regard this title as a reference to God, confronting Isaiah’s readers with the divinity of this promised “child.” The use of this same title that clearly refers to God in a later passage (Isa 10:21) supports this interpretation. Other passages depict Yahweh as the great God and great warrior (Deut 10:17; Jer. 32:18). Although this connection of a child who is born with deity is unparalleled in any earlier biblical texts, Isaiah’s use of this title to make this connection represents Isaiah’s attempt (at God’s behest) to advance Israel in their understanding of the ideal Davidic king for whom they long.

(0.12) (Nah 2:2)

tn The verb form שָׁב (shav) may be a perfect or a participle, probably based on the root שׁוּב (shuv, “return, restore”). It has been understood in many ways: “hath turned away” (KJV), “will restore” (NASB, NIV), “is restoring” (NRSV, ESV), or “is about to restore” (R. Smith, Micah–Malachi [WBC] 79). The past and future tense translations both treat the Hebrew form as a perfect, the past tense being the most common for the Hebrew perfect and the future tense based on an understanding of the Hebrew as a “prophetic perfect.” Typically a “prophetic perfect” is part of a report from a point of view after the events have taken place, such as a prophet reporting a vision that he has seen or is unfolding (Num 24:17). From the speaker’s perspective the events of the vision are in the past, though the corresponding events of human history will be in the future. The present tense and near future renderings are common for the participle, the latter especially true in prophecy. The Qal form of the verb is normally intransitive (“return”), but occurs here with the direct object marker. This occurs elsewhere 14 times meaning “restore,” but always with שְׁבוּת or שְׁבִית (shevut or shevit, “fortune” or “captivity”) as in Deut 30:3; Jer 29:14; Ezek 16:53; Joel 3:1; Amos 9:14; Zeph 3:20. This would be the sole example meaning “restore” without the apparently cognate direct object. Still, most scholars derive שָׁב from the root שׁוּב (shuv). W. A. Maier (Nahum, 232) contends, however, that שָׁב is derived from I שָׁבַב (shavav, “to cut off, to destroy, to smite”) which is related to Arabic sabba (“to cut”), Aramaic sibbaʾ (“splinter”), and New Hebrew. Maier admits that this would be the only occurrence of a verb from I שָׁבָב in the OT, but he argues that the appearance of the plural noun שְׁבָבִים (shevavim, “splinters”) in Hos 8:6 provides adequate support. While worth investigating, Maier’s proposal is problematic in relying on cognate evidence that is all late and proposing a rare word to replace a well-known Hebrew term which frequently appears in climactic contexts in prophetic speeches. On the other hand, it is easy to believe that a common word might be misunderstood in place of a rare term. And in this case either the verb or the syntax is rare, though an attested meaning of שׁוּב (shuv, “to restore”) makes good sense in this context. The LXX took it in a negative sense “has turned aside.” On the other hand, it is nuanced in a positive, salvific sense by the Vulgate, Targum, and Syriac. The salvific nuance is best for the following reasons: (1) its direct object is גְּאוֹן (geʾon) which should be understood in the positive sense of “majesty; exaltation; glory” (see following note on the word “majesty”); (2) the motive clause introduced by כִּי (ki, “for”) would make little sense, saying that the reason the Lord was about to destroy Nineveh was because he had turned away the pride of Judah; however, it makes good sense to say that the Lord would destroy Nineveh because he was about to deliver Judah; and (3) a reference to the Lord turning aside from Judah would be out of harmony with the rest of the book.



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