Today's Word

It’s an Idiom, Idiot! (1)

By Skip Moen, Ph.D. | Oct 19, 2021

Then God spoke to Noah and to his sons with him, saying,  Genesis 9:8 NASB Saying – Note the same verse translated by Aryeh Kaplan: “God said to Noah and his sons with him.”  [The Living Torah] And by Robert Alter: “And God said to Noah and to his sons with him.”  [The Hebrew Bible]…

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Divine Pity

By Skip Moen, Ph.D. | Oct 18, 2021

Grant us grace, LORD, grant us grace. For we are sorely sated with scorn.  Psalm 123:3  Robert Alter Grant – How did you come to believe?  I’m not asking how you came into religion.  That happens mostly by drifting through cultural or family expectations.  No, I’m asking something else.  How did you realize that God…

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Imaginative Consent

By Skip Moen, Ph.D. | Oct 17, 2021

God has spoken once; twice I have heard this: that power belongs to God;    Psalm 62:11 [English]  NASB Once; twice – You wouldn’t know it from reading this English translation, but the rabbis used this verse as a prooftext for the assertion that every verse in the Bible demands multiple interpretations.  Why did they use this verse? …

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No Pill’s Gonna’ Cure My Ill

By Skip Moen, Ph.D. | Oct 15, 2021

If I but trust to see the LORD’s goodness, in the land of the living—Hope for the LORD!  Let your heart be firm and bold, and hope for the LORD.  Psalm 27:13-14  Robert Alter Hope for – “We live in an age of despair, and those who despair would seem justified, considering the compounding crises…

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The Scroll and the Book

By Skip Moen, Ph.D. | Oct 14, 2021

And the LORD said to Moses, “Write this down as a remembrance in a record, and put it in Joshua’s hearing, that I will surely wipe out the name of Amalek from under the heavens.”  Exodus 17:14  Robert Alter Record – Compare the translation of the same verse in the NASB: Then the Lord said to Moses,…

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God of the Living

By Skip Moen, Ph.D. | Oct 13, 2021

For the sake of Your name, LORD, give me life, in Your bounty bring me out from the straits.  Psalm 143:11  Robert Alter Give me life – The NASB translates this single Hebrew word as “revive me,” but that implies I only need resuscitation.  Alter’s translation is more fundamental.  “Give me life,” implies that I…

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Guttenberg Assumptions

By Skip Moen, Ph.D. | Oct 12, 2021

“Oh that my words were written!  Oh that they were recorded in a book!”  Job 19:23  NASB Book – It seems obvious, doesn’t it?  Scrolls are not books.  The Bible wasn’t written as a collection of books.  We all know that, but what we might not realize is how this affects our understanding of the text. …

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Adding a Few

By Skip Moen, Ph.D. | Oct 11, 2021

By the rivers of Babylon we sat and wept when we remembered Zion.  There on the poplars we hung our harps, for there our captors asked us for songs, our tormentors demanded songs of joy; they said, “Sing us one of the songs of Zion!”  How can we sing the songs of the Lord while in a foreign land? …

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Starting Over

By Skip Moen, Ph.D. | Oct 10, 2021

And there was evening and there was morning, the sixth day. Genesis 1:31b NASB The – Other than the fact that Robert Alter’s translation of this verse changes “there was” to “it was,” is there anything really significantly different?  To answer that question, we need to read “Introduction to the Five Books” in his translation…

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Vengeance Is Mine

By Skip Moen, Ph.D. | Oct 7, 2021

Happy who seizes and smashes your infants against the rock.  Psalm 137:9  Alter Happy – It’s difficult to believe God in the midst of great trauma.  If God is good, if He cares about us, then why do we suffer so much?  It doesn’t feel like a test.  It feels like abandonment, or divine failure. …

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