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Saturday, July 26, 2014

Luther Bible-Pt 6: Grammar of Gen. 4:1b; Keil-Delitzsch; "letters people"; Jews reject true grammar, maybe also the LC-MS?

     This Part 6 continues from Part 5 (Table of Contents in Part 1) presenting my (BTL) translation of Prof. Pardieck's Lehre und Wehre article in 1914 on Luther's final translation of Genesis 4:1.  Luther's translation is virtually unknown in today's world because it has been corrupted.  Why?  Read on...
     We meet with the technical terminology of grammar in this section.  I recall learning about grammar many decades ago, and have long forgotten the meaning of "accusative", "transitive" and "particle", although I remember a few things about "prepositions" and "adverbs".  But on this question of the meaning of Genesis 4:1b, the old (German) Missouri Synod showed that it was the defender of the true Lutheran Church, for it claimed to be the master of the Hebrew grammar, and grammar in general.  But they did this only by faith... the same as Martin Luther.  Since Luther said "The grammar is Empress", it almost makes me want to pick up a book on "Grammar" and restudy this important science of language.
     Keil and Delitzsch, who were German Lutheran theologians, are well known names among today's theologians as authorities in the Biblical languages.  And the English Reformed publishers have had their German writings translated and published.  But we see in Prof. Pardieck's analysis that both Keil and Delitzsch certainly stumbled or fell at times in their scholarship on the Hebrew meaning of Genesis 4:1b.  With Hunnius, the "Missourians" would call Eve our "holy mother" in the true faith, faith in the "man-Jehovah" whom we now call in the New Testament time... Jesus Christ.
Hebrew characters have been graphically added back in from the original text.
Underlining follows author's emphasis, highlighting is mine. Hyperlinks added for reference.
= = = = = = = = = = = = = = =   Part 6: Page 343-344   = = = = = = = = = = = = = = =
On Luther's Translation of Genesis 4:1
[by Prof. Eduard Pardieck] 
How does it stand now with the establishment of the Lutheran translation?  There it should be said: it has the grammar for itself.  This is actually generally conceded that this is the only translation that may be allowed when seen against the grammar.  Keil says in his commentary: "The 343-Hebrew01.jpg with Luther: to believe ‘a man the Lord’ as closer determining apposition to 343-Hebrew02.jpg, would be quite allowed grammatically, however it is in the sense inadvisable".  About the "in the sense inadvisable" we shall hear more later.  Here we only register the concession: "allowed grammatically". Similarly Delitzsch: "Is 343-Hebrew03.jpg here the accusative sign or the preposition?  The words seem to mean: I have acquired or brought forth a man, the Jehovah; because frequently is found after an initial accusative a second, closer to determining with 343-Hebrew04.jpg: [Genesis] 6:10; 26:34; Isaiah 7.17, while 343-Hebrew05.jpg as adverbial phrase meaning 'with Yahweh" does not occur otherwise, but instead (because 343-Hebrew06.jpg, 49:25, is questionable) 343-Hebrew07.jpg, 1 Samuel 14:25".  And now comes the usual dogmatic and "historical revelation" doubts.  In his "Messianic Prophecies" he even says: "The impression that 343-Hebrew04.jpg in 343-Hebrew09.jpg, [Genesis] 4:1 b, qualifier of the object (like 6:10, 26:34) is so strong, that the Jerusalemite Targum translates: I have acquired a man, the angel Yahweh. But this interpretation already lapses because the angel of Yahweh occurs only after the patriarchal period enters into history and consciousness." (page 30, “Anm. 1”).  In the dispute with the Lutherans, the grammar was granted more or less unopposed.  They well said mockingly: they are letters people, they would have nothing but grammatical reasons for themselves.  Sebastian Schmidt testified on this against Rivetus: "We wonder indeed that such a learned man can argue so foolishly.  Are not then the grammatical reasons, in laying out the Scriptures, among the strongest and first?  Must one then not observe the meaning and usage of the individual words according to [Page 344] their character?  Can then not already one argument from grammar suffice?"  These are not just frivolous ideas of our own, but we have reason in the grammar, which even the Jews could take if they did not in a vicious way simply not want to; because the Jews also argue with the grammar".  Now, there is a stronger argument in the exegesis of course not from grammar, that is the word meaning and the usus loquendi.  The sense thus obtained must remain as the right one, as long as the Scripture itself does not protest against it, or, as Luther expresses it, it is against an article of faith.  With earnestness Luther and other theologians have made such sayings: The grammar is Empress. The church is grammatical.  Because God has revealed his will to us in human language, and it concerns the understanding of the word, our theology is for the most part philology.  God's Word is not theologically understood if it has not been previously understood grammatically.  Whoever has the grammar in its full sense for himself and no other clear Scripture against him, has the right understanding of a passage on his side.
The individual arguments in support of the Lutheran translation is summarized by Gerhard in seven points, which are then often cited and approved by the following exegetes.  We state them briefly in turn and make a few brief observations. Gerhard says "Their accuracy is evident (1) from the original meaning of the word 343-Hebrew03.jpg.  The particle 343-Hebrew04.jpg is in its proper and usual meaning of the sign of the accusative when it is constructed with active or transitive verbs.  This from this meaning one is not to depart unless there is an obvious coercion."  Pfeiffer gives the rule quite in general and positively thus: "343-Hebrew04.jpg is, when an active verb precedes it by which it is governed, always nota accusativi.  Of this there is no exception (non datur dissimile exemplum)".  Calov gives the same rule thus: "Wherever the particles 343-Hebrew04.jpg are found in front of a noun which is governed by an active transitive verb, then is it the rule (ordinarie) the sign of the accusative".  When one by these formulations the more precise determination of of the rule: "if 343-Hebrew04.jpg is constructed with a transitive verb”, "wanted to press "if it is governed by a transitive verb", then a pretty worthless, self-evident truth would come out that would be almost tantamount to: If it is accusative, it is accusative; because if it indicates something other than the object case, it is not "governed by" and "constructed with" the transitive verb as such.  To say, however, in general: if 343-Hebrew04.jpg stands for a transitive verb, then you will only be able to say, and can you say: then it is the rule nota accusativi.  In the majority of cases so far in which 343-Hebrew04.jpg signs are of the accusative, even with a transitive verb where one naturally first [Page 345] has to think of the object, this assumption has always an enormous presumption of its own. –  
= = = = = = = =  cont'd in Part 7  = = = = = = = =

     This part ends with the first of seven points made by John Gerhard.  Unfortunately Pardieck does not give the specific place in Gerhard's Loci where the above may be found.  I must say it is quite difficult to translate Pardieck's material on the Hebrew grammar.  If you are like me, this may seem a little over the top in its technical terms of grammar, but Pardieck and the true Lutheran theologians are dealing with divine matters...  matters that matter... for eternity.  If you are a layman like myself and get into Strong's numbering of biblical words, I suspect there may well be some misinformation going on with word meanings.  For example one online-interlinear Hebrew Bible, BibleHub, seems to put forth the typical Reformed error which is repeated ad nauseum.
     According to my "Concordia Self-Study Bible, NIV" (CS-SB) from 1986 (Robert G Hoerber, General Editor), the following comment is made on the NIV version of Genesis 4:1b which reads "With the help of the Lord I have brought forth a man":
Eve acknowledged that God is the ultimate source of life (see Acts 17:25). According to Luther's translation ("I have the man, the Lord") Eve believed that her son was the fulfillment of the promise in 3:15.
Dear reader, do you believe the CPH's CS-SB editors believed Luther's translation?  Hmmm, good question... they certainly did not affirm it., but did they not also explicitly deny Luther's translation?  (John Gerhard did affirm it).  Oh, I thought this passage was a Lutheran shibboleth (?).  But isn't CPH and the LC-MS Lutheran?  Good question again...

Gerhard's next six (of seven) points on grammar will be covered in the next Part 7.

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