Articles

Genesis 3:15 in the New Testament and in the Pentateuchal Targums: Enmity as a Spiritual Conflict by Iosif J. Zhakevich
Articles , Old Testament / June 23, 2022

Genesis 3:15 in the New Testament and in the Pentateuchal Targums: Enmity as a Spiritual Conflict Iosif J. Zhakevich Iosif J. Zhakevich is Associate Professor of Old Testament The Master’s Seminary in Los Angeles, CA Abstract: The present paper conducts a comparative analysis of Gen 3:15 in the Pentateuchal Targums and of allusions to Gen 3:15 at Rev 12:17 (and its broader context) in order to demonstrate that the Targums and the book of Revelation both interpret the enmity announced at Gen 3:15 to be a spiritual battle, not a mere reference to the animus between humans and snakes. This view of enmity is indeed the point of departure for the broader interpretation of Gen 3:15 as a messianic text in Rev 12 and the Targums, as other scholars have shown. Moreover, to explain the congruity between the Targums and Rev 12, this study concludes, in agreement with the general view in comparative targumic and NT studies, that such an interpretation of the enmity at Gen 3:15 existed in the early Jewish community and was incorporated into the NT and into the Targums in accordance with each author’s literary purposes and theological convictions. Key Words: Targum, New Testament, Messiah, Enmity,…

Understanding the Paraclete Title: Any Help from the Targums? by John Ronning
Articles , Old Testament / June 23, 2022

Understanding the Paraclete Title: Any Help from the Targums?[1] John Ronning John Ronning, Field Service Engineer, American Electrical Testing Co. “Helper” is one suggested meaning of the fairly rare Greek word παράκλητος, found in the NT only in John’s writings.[2] In a previous study I suggested the possibility that when Jesus promised “another Paraclete, that he may be with you forever” (John 14:16), he may have been using targumic language, since in the extant Targums the divine promise to be with his people is frequently paraphrased with the idea of the divine Word (Aramaic מֵימְרָא) being their “Helper.”[3] The present paper explores further this possibility. The term (παράκλητος) is used of the Holy Spirit by Jesus in his upper room discourse (John 14:16-17; 15:26; 16:7).  Additionally, it is used by John (1 John 2:1) to describe Jesus after his ascension.  Implications for the doctrine of the deity of the Holy Spirit would seem to come not from the definition and possible OT background of the word, but from the fact that the same term is used for both the Son and the Spirit, who carries on the work of the Son after his ascension to the right hand of the…

Targumic Forerunners: How Codex Colbertinus-Sarravianus (G) Demonstrates Targumic Tendencies by Matthew R. Miller
Articles , Old Testament / June 23, 2022

Targumic Forerunners: How Codex Colbertinus-Sarravianus (G) Demonstrates Targumic Tendencies Matthew R. Miller Matthew R. Miller serves as a Chaplain at Westover Air Force Base, MA Before Targumic texts existed, the Septuagint (LXX) was translated in Alexandria. This translation of the Pentateuch from Hebrew to Greek was the first of its kind and literally the stuff of legend.[1] It is a well-known problem in Old Testament textual studies that the LXX translation does not align exactly with the Hebrew Masoretic Text (MT) standard today.[2] The differences between the LXX and MT raise several questions: 1) are the differences due to different idioms? 2) is there a theological motivation behind the differences? 3) was the LXX translated from a Hebrew Vorlage that is different from the MT? Since most in the Early Church did not know Hebrew, they assumed the priority of the LXX over the Hebrew Scriptures, believing that God had given the LXX to the Early Church in his providence.[3] These problems were not unknown in the Early Church, however. They were not fully documented until Origen’s work on the Hexapla. Origen was distressed by the lack of agreement he noticed between the church’s Bible and the Hebrew text of…

Aramaic to Greek Transliterations in Western Middle Aramaic by Andrew Messmer
Articles , Old Testament / June 23, 2022

Aramaic to Greek Transliterations in the Western Middle Aramaic[1] Andrew Messmer Andrew Messmer is the academic dean at Seminario Teológico de Sevilla in Santiponce, Spain; associate professor at the Facultad Internacional de Teología IBSTE in Castelldefels, Spain; and affiliated researcher at the Evangelical Theological Faculty in Belgium. Introduction For those scholars and laymen interested in the Aramaic language around the time of Jesus, there are several interesting questions to pursue, some of which are: How was Aramaic pronounced during the time of Jesus? What tools do we have to clarify ambiguities in the Aramaic language? What was the state of Aramaic–Greek bilingualism in Judea and its surrounding environs? There are various tools that researchers use to answer these questions,[2] and one of them is studying transliterations from Aramaic into Greek from the corpus of texts known as Western Middle Aramaic (hereafter WMA). Generally speaking, this division of the Aramaic language spans the time period of 200 BC–AD 200 and covers the geographical region of Judea and its surrounding environs.[3] This article tabulates the instances of WMA transliterations into Greek across four corpora in order to determine the frequency and trends regarding which Greek characters were used to transliterate Aramaic ones…

How Targum Onqelos Can Help Discern Between the Biblical Hebrew Frequentative and Preterital Imperfects by Richard McDonald
Articles , Old Testament / June 23, 2022

How Targum Onqelos Can Help Discern Between the Biblical Hebrew Frequentative and Preterital Imperfects Richard McDonald Richard C. McDonald is an Instructor at Whitefield Academy and Adjunct Instructor of Old Testament Interpretation at Boyce College in Louisville, KY Abstract: The biblical Hebrew past Imperfect can be a difficult verb form to translate. The Hebrew grammars available to the reader do not provide many tips to determine whether a particular BH past Imperfect is functioning as a frequentative or a preterital. In fact, one grammarian contends that it is often left up to the intellect of the reader. However, the reader has another tool—not simply his or her intellect—to utilize in order to understand the BH past Imperfect. This paper argues that Targum Onqelos of the Pentateuch serves as a reliable guide in discerning the function of the BH frequentative and preterital Imperfects in the books of Genesis through Deuteronomy. The Hebrew and the Aramaic texts of Numbers 9:15-23 and Exodus 15:1-18 are analyzed to demonstrate that Onqelos consistently renders the BH frequentative with a Participle, and the BH preterital Imperfect with a Perfect. The concepts gleaned from Numbers 9:15-23 and Exodus 15:1-18 are then applied to other passages in the…

“All Manner of Music:” The Author of Daniel 3 as Master Storyteller by H. A. Hopgood
Articles , Old Testament / June 23, 2022

“All Manner of Music:” The Author of Daniel 3 as Master Storyteller H. A. Hopgood H. A. Hopgood is a scholar of the biblical languages and a Professor of Greek and New Testament Theology at Andersonville Theological Seminary in Camilla, GA Abstract: Amidst the exciting narratives of the book of Daniel, chapter 3 contains extra elements of drama, displaying the best in historic narratives. The author’s techniques are some of the most basic among a storyteller’s methods: a well-structured plot, good form, poetic expression, and memorable characters. His use of these simple (though not necessarily easy) methods to craft the narrative of this event distinguishes him as a great teacher and a master of literary art. By creating a compelling account from the perspective of a chronicler, the author achieved a two-fold end: 1) to preserve the history of those Jewish leaders that remained faithful to their God during the Babylonian captivity and 2) to reveal to Jew and Gentile alike the nature of God and his care for his faithful servants.[1] Keywords: Daniel, three Hebrew children, fiery furnace, Nebuchadnezzar, storytelling Read the full article: “All Manner of Music:” The Author of Daniel 3 as Master Storyteller   [1] Martin Luther,…

The Value of Egyptian Aramaic for Biblical Studies by Collin Cornell
Articles , Old Testament / June 23, 2022

The Value of Egyptian Aramaic for Biblical Studies Collin Cornell Collin Cornell is Visiting Assistant Professor of Biblical Studies for the School of Theology at the University of the South in Sewanee, TN. Abstract: Biblical Aramaic accounts for a small fraction within the two-testament Christian Bible. Studying it would seem therefore to present a modest value for biblical studies, and Egyptian Aramaic, a nonbiblical counterpart from the same historical era, even more so. The present article argues, however, that comparing Egyptian Aramaic with biblical texts sharpens understanding of the Bible’s distinctive theological profile. It demonstrates the value of Egyptian Aramaic through two comparative case studies: the first is lexically-focused and traces the contrast between “former” (as in, “former times”; Hebrew ראשון//Aramaic √קדם) and “latter” in Haggai and in several Aramaic letters from the Egyptian island of Elephantine.  The second is more genre-focused and engages with the transmission of royal traditions, especially promissory oracles to the king, in post-monarchic texts: namely, biblical royal psalms and the Egyptian Aramaic Papyrus Amherst 63. Keywords: Egyptian Aramaic; early Judaism; Persian Period; Achaemenid; Elephantine; Haggai; royal psalms; Papyrus Amherst 63 Read the full article: The Value of Egyptian Aramaic for Biblical Studies Share this on: FacebookTwitterLinkedin

Introduction to Aramaic and the Bible by Adam J. Howell
Articles , Old Testament / June 23, 2022

Introduction to Aramaic and the Bible Adam J. Howell Adam J. Howell is Assistant Professor of Old Testament Interpretation at Boyce College & Southern Seminary in Louisville, KY. While the Aramaic portions of Scripture may be minimal, Aramaic studies proves to be fertile ground for understanding biblical linguistics, history, and interpretation. With only 269 verses (Gen 31:47 [partially], Jer 10:11; Dan 2:4b–7:28; Ezra 4:8–6:18; 7:12–26) of the Tanakh written in Aramaic, one may question the attention given here to the topic of “Aramaic and the Bible.” However, as with any topic in biblical studies, deeper investigation into these matters will reveal more and more context into which we place the biblical narratives. Aramaic particularly becomes helpful in this regard due to its long history as a written and spoken language in the ancient Near East. According to Franz Rosenthal, the earliest Aramaic inscriptions date to the ninth century bc.[1] Beginning as the spoken language of Aramean tribes, the language moved into Assyria and Babylon, eventually supplanting Akkadian as the lingua franca of the region.[2] By the time of King Hezekiah in Judah (2 Kgs 18:26), Aramaic was apparently an international language and continued to be so into the Persian period….

JBTS 7.1 Full Issue
Articles , Featured , Old Testament / June 10, 2022

JBTS 7.1 Aramaic and the Bible Introduction to Aramaic and the Bible by Adam J. Howell The Value of Egyptian Aramaic for Biblical Studies by Collin Cornell “All Manner of Music:” The Author of Daniel 3 as Master Storyteller by H. A. Hopgood How Targum Onqelos Can Help Discern Between the Biblical Hebrew Frequentative and Preterital Imperfects by Richard McDonald Aramaic to Greek Transliterations in the Western Middle Aramaic by Andrew Messmer Targumic Forerunners: How Codex Colbertinus-Sarravianus (G) Demonstrates Targumic Tendencies by Matthew R. Miller Understanding the Paraclete Title: Any Help from the Targums? by John Ronning Genesis 3:15 in the New Testament and in the Pentateuchal Targums: Enmity as a Spiritual Conflict by Iosif J. Zhakevich Book Reviews Share this on: FacebookTwitterLinkedin

Christology and Economic Ethics: Herman Bavinck’s Prophet, Priest, and King in the Marketplace by Matthew Kaemingk

Christology and Economic Ethics: Herman Bavinck’s Prophet, Priest, and King in the Marketplace Matthew Kaemingk Matthew Kaemingk (PhD, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam; PhD, Fuller Theological Seminary) is Richard John Mouw Assistant Professor of Faith and Public Life And Director of The Richard John Mouw Institute of Faith And Public Life at Fuller Theological Seminary.   Introduction How should a Christian follow Jesus in the marketplace? Around the world Christian activists and academics, pastors and professionals offer a wide variety of dissenting answers to the critically important relationship between faith and economic life. This article explores a latent potential within Herman Bavinck’s Christology to present a way forward for a divided church on the major marketplace questions of the day. An essay of “public theology,” this brief article develops and applies Herman Bavinck’s munus triplex Christology—Christ as prophet, priest, and king—to illustrate both the unity and diversity of the church’s marketplace responsibilities. This article will examine a Jesus-follower’s threefold vocation in the marketplace: a prophetic calling to speak words of economic truth and justice, a priestly calling to marketplace ministries of reconciliation, grace, and spiritual communion, and a royal calling to economic responsibility, creativity, productivity, and service. Read the full article: Christology and…