Isaiah (2)

*This post was originally published bilingually in English as well as Korean back in 2018. Now the post is separated in each language. For the Korean version, see this.

The Tripartite Division of Isaiah and the Problem of the Authorship of the Book of Isaiah (2)

#1. Second Isaiah has been traditionally regarded to be chs. 40-55. As mentioned in the previous post, however, chs. 34-35, which originally was deemed to belong to First Isaiah, is these days viewed as Second Isaiah. Second Isaiah mainly prophesizes the restoration of Judah from the Babylonian destruction (the judgment of God), and its geographical backdrop is primarily Babylon. Second Isaiah even talks about the return from the Babylonian deportation:

Go out from Babylon, flee from Chaldea,
declare this with a shout of joy, proclaim it,
send it forth to the end of the earth;
say, “The LORD has redeemed his servant Jacob!” (Is 48:20, NRSV)

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Isaiah (1)

*This post was originally published bilingually in English as well as Korean back in 2018. Now the post is separated in each language. For the English version, see this.

The Tripartite Division of Isaiah and the Problem of the Authorship of the Book of Isaiah (1)

Have you ever heard of the terms, such as Second Isaiah (or Deutero-Isaiah) and Third Isaiah (or Trito-Isaiah)? These are quite common terms for Hebrew Bible scholars but, I guess, not for most lay Christians. If you have a good sense of intuition, you would know that these words have something to do with the author of the book of Isaiah. If you have a little better sense of intuition, then you may even notice that these words suggest that the historical Isaiah is not the only one who is responsible for the composition of the book of Isaiah.

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Lamentations

Lamentations

*This post was originally published bilingually in English as well as Korean back in 2018. Now the post is separated in each language. For the Korean version, see this.

What is the matter?

Many Christians assume that the prophet Jeremiah wrote the book of Lamentations in the Hebrew Bible. But Hebrew Bible scholars came up with some ideas that significantly challenge such an assumption. Why have people been assuming that Jeremiah is the author of the book of Lamentations? And what is the evidence that Jeremiah is not the author of that book?

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주님: 아도나이, 아도니, 아돈

For an English version of the post, click here

1. 주님: 아도나이, 아도니, 아돈

(1) 아도나이: 위 세 단어 중 가장 흔하게 알려진 단어는 아마도 ‘아도나이’일 것이다. ‘아도나이’는 주(lord)라는 뜻의 ‘아돈’의 복수 연계형(아도네)에 ‘나’라는 접미사(아이)가 붙은 형태(아도네+아이)로 문자적으로는 ‘나의 주님들’이다(위 그림의 오른쪽 아래 형태). 하지만 히브리어에서 ‘복수’는 둘 이상의 숫자를 나타낼 때만 쓰는 것이 아니라 해당 대상의 위대함이나 힘, 혹은 크고 넓은 범위를 가리킬 때도 쓰이기 때문에 복수로 쓰여도 번역에서는 단수로 써야 하는 경우가 있다. 대표적인 예는 ‘신’ 혹은 ‘신들’을 뜻할 수 있는 ‘엘로힘’이라는 말을 들 수 있고 이 ‘아도나이’도 같은 경우이다. 그래서 ‘아도나이’는 문자적으로 ‘나의 주님들’ 혹은 ‘나의 주님’이라는 뜻이다. 그런데 ‘아도나이’라는 표현은 유대인들이 신을 지칭하기 위해 늘 쓰던 말이다 보니 그 용례가 그냥 ‘주님’이라는 뜻으로 고착되었다. 아도나이, 아도니, 아돈 중 하나님을 지칭하는 말로 압도적으로 많이 나타나는 형태는 ‘아도나이’이다.

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Lord: Adonai, Adoni, Adon

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1. Lord: Adonai, Adoni, Adon

(1) Adonai: Among the three words, the most well-known word is probably “Adonai.” “Adonai” is literally “my lords” as it is a combination of the plural construct (= /ʾªdōnê/) of the word “Adon,” meaning “lord”) and the pronominal suffix, 1st person singular (= /ai/ as in sky). But in biblical Hebrew, a plural form of a word does not always indicate its number but often its greatness of power, depth, width, etc. So in such cases, plural nouns are translated as a singular word. One of the most prominent examples might be Elohim, which is in form plural but often indicates the God of Israel, only one god. (But of course, it can be “gods” as well) And the word Adonai also is the same case. Adonia means “my lords,” but it most often means “my Lord.” What should be noted, however, is that this expression has indicated the God of Israel so often and long that Adonia itself became to mean just “the Lord,” rather than “my Lord(s).” Among the three words listed above, Adonia has the absolute majority of the occurrences to indicate Israel’s God. 

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