Come or go? Isaiah 2:3 & Micah 4:2

Discussion in 'Bible Versions/Translations' started by franklinmonroe, Feb 26, 2009.

  1. franklinmonroe

    franklinmonroe
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    Compare Isaiah 2:2-4 (above) with Micah 4:1-3 (below) --
    And it shall come to pass in the last days,
    But in the last days it shall come to pass,
    [that] the mountain of the -- LORD'S house -- shall be established
    [that] the mountain of the house of the LORD shall be established
    in the top of the mountains, and - shall be exalted above the hills;
    in the top of the mountains, and it shall be exalted above the hills;
    and all nations shall flow unto it.
    and --- people shall flow unto it.

    And many people shall -- go -- and say,
    And many nations shall come, and say,
    Come ye, and let us go up to the mountain of the LORD,
    Come, -- and let us go up to the mountain of the LORD,
    ---- to the house of the God of Jacob; and he will teach us of his ways,
    and to the house of the God of Jacob; and he will teach us of his ways,
    and we will walk in his paths: for out of Zion shall go forth the law,
    and we will walk in his paths: for --- the law shall go forth of Zion,
    and the word of the LORD from Jerusalem.
    and the word of the LORD from Jerusalem.

    And he shall judge among the nations,
    And he shall judge among many people,
    and shall rebuke many people: ---------- and they shall beat their swords into plowshares,
    and ----- rebuke strong nations afar off; and they shall beat their swords into plowshares,
    and their spears into pruninghooks: nation shall not lift up - sword against nation,
    and their spears into pruninghooks: nation shall not lift up a sword against nation,
    neither shall they learn war any more.
    neither shall they learn war any more.
    In the first verse comparison there is essentially four words of difference: "And" & "nations" in Isaiah, and "But" & "people" in Micah (since "of the" is the equivalent of "apostrophe+S"). I don't think there is probably a big difference in Hebrew between "And" or "But"; "nations" and "people" while different words in Hebrew do have nearly synonymous meanings. Plus, in the first verse comparison there is one unique word in each verse ("it" in Micah", & "all" in Isaiah). The first two phrases ("it shall come to pass" & "in the last days") are reversed in order, and "house" comes before "LORD" in one and after in the other, but that should be no issue at all.

    In the second verse comparison we find the same difference between "people" and "nations" followed by a difference of "go" and "come". These seem to be translated from the exact same Hebrew word halak (Strong's #1980) which can mean either "come" or "go". The context seems to be virtually identical in both passages. But the NKJV (as most versions) has "come" at Isaiah 2:3. In the rest of these two verses there seems to be just three words of difference and a single instance of revese order in the English of the KJV.

    In the third verse comparison there is a total of six words difference, and a semi-reversal of order between "nations" and "people". All in all, Isaiah (141 words) has just 6 unique English words not found in the Micah (138 words) KJV passage, and Micah has just 5 unique words (not including "LORD'S"/"of the LORD", four sets of "people"/"nation", and "come"/"go").
     
    #1 franklinmonroe, Feb 26, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 26, 2009
  2. Salamander

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    For one to come to anything, he must first have gone from a point of origin. Once he leaves that point of origin, he has departed. If he were to announce his departure previously to leaving, he would say, "I will go."

    It has to do with the origin from the point of persepctive: if I am at point "b" and you leave from point "a", I would say you are going to come to where I am. You would say you're coming to my location, but you would "go" to where I am, this being your perspective and that being mine.

    "Coming and going", why would such a simple concept so readily confuse anyone?
     
  3. franklinmonroe

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    I have examined the Hebrew of Isaiah 2:3 & Micah 4:2 to the best of my ability. I see only one completely unique word discrepancy ("people"/"nations") between them. Other than than that, I detect only one letter difference in the rest of the two verses; that additional letter in Micah seems to translate as "and", which indeed is placed before "to the House of the God of Jacob".

    Therefore, it seems there is no Hebrew requirement for the additional "ye" in Isaiah. Also, the word order in Hebrew seems to be identical so there was no reason to reverse the order for "the law" and "of Zion" in the "go forth" phrase; the change in English structure necessitated the additional word "out" in Isaiah. And the topic question remains: should the reading be "go" or "come" (does the "people"/"nations" subject have a direct affect on the verb)?

    It seems the 'First' Company (which included John Rainolds and Miles Smith) at Oxford would have translated both Isaiah and Micah.
     
  4. Salamander

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    Simple: "ye people and that nation"
     
  5. Jim1999

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    Sure glad you resolved that issue. I was getting dizzy trying to read it...

    Cheers,

    Jim
     
  6. franklinmonroe

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    The prophet Micah was a contemporary of Isaiah. The book of Isaiah clearly states that this passage represents what "Isaiah the son of Amoz saw concerning Judah and Jerusalem" (2:1). Was Micah repeating Isaiah? Or, did Micah also 'see' some of the same prophecy?
     
  7. Salamander

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    I suppose we'll al just have to stay in amazement, especially since this is a MAJOR translational issue.:sleep:
     
  8. Logos1560

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    The 1560 Geneva Bible does not have the additional "ye" at Isaiah 2:3.
     
  9. franklinmonroe

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    I also noticed in the Geneva (online 1587 edition was handy) that the wording was nearly identical to the KJV, except the KJV adds three small words: you mentioned one (the superfluous "ye" after "Come"); second, there is an extra "of" before "his ways" not present in the Geneva; and third, the Geneva kept the original Hebrew word order in the phrase "for the Lawe shall go foorth of Zion" thus avoiding the insertion of "out" into the English.

    But by contrast, the AV1611 has very different wording than the Bishops' Bible (which was supposed to be their model):
    Where the Bishops' had "a multitude of people" the KJV replaced with "many people"
    Where the Bishops' had "speakyng" the KJV substitutes with "and say"
    Where the Bishops' renders as "ascend to the hyll of the Lorde" the KJV changes it to "go up the mountaine of the Lord"
    Where the Bishops' had "instruct us" it becomes "teach us" in the KJV
    The Bishops' translation "shall come a lawe" is altered in the KJV to "shall goe forth the lawe". (There's that "come" or "go" thing again.)​
    Were all the above edits necessitated by the original language text? Can any of these revisions really be considered improvements?
     
    #9 franklinmonroe, Mar 3, 2009
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  10. franklinmonroe

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    What is (if any) the significance between "people" and "nations"? In the KJV the Hebrew behind "people" is 'am (Strong's #5971) and the Hebrew behind "nations" is gowy (Strong's #1471). It doesn't seem that they are so similar is spelling that they could have been unintentionally reversed from Isaiah to Micah.

    Isaiah 2:2 in the Septuagint ends with a form of ethnos (Strong's #1484 meaning: a tribe, nation, people group; from which we get our word 'ethnic') to represent "nations", and the uses the same Greek word to represent "people" at the beginning of 2:3. The first edition of the NLT also has "nations" in both Isaiah 2:3 and Micah 4:2.
     
    #10 franklinmonroe, Mar 4, 2009
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  11. franklinmonroe

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    There are a few differences in Young's Literal translation of these two verses. Remember, the "and" in Micah before "unto the house" seems to be supported by the actual underlying Hebrew text. Notice that Young has consistently used "gone" in both verses for halak --
    And gone have many peoples and said,
    Come, and we go up unto the mount of Jehovah,
    Unto the house of the God of Jacob, And He doth teach us of His ways,
    And we walk in His paths, For from Zion goeth forth a law,
    And a word of Jehovah from Jerusalem. (Isaiah 2:3)


    And gone have many nations and said,
    Come and we go up to the mount of Jehovah,
    And unto the house of the God of Jacob, And He doth teach us of His ways,
    And we do walk in His paths, For from Zion doth go forth a law,
    And a word of Jehovah from Jerusalem. (Micah 4:2)


    The only word differences found in Darby's version are indeed the ones supported by the ancient Hebrew text. Darby has consistently translated the Hebrew as "go" in both verses --
    And many peoples shall go and say,
    Come, and let us go up to the mountain of Jehovah,
    to the house of the God of Jacob; and he will teach us of his ways,
    and we will walk in his paths. For out of Zion shall go forth the law,
    and Jehovah's word from Jerusalem. (Isaiah 2:3)


    And many nations shall go and say,
    Come, and let us go up to the mountain of Jehovah,
    and to the house of the God of Jacob; and he will teach us of his ways,
    and we will walk in his paths. For out of Zion shall go forth the law,
    and Jehovah's word from Jerusalem. (Micah 4:2)


    Beyond the "people"/"nations" difference, these two verses are identical in the ESV (the ESV has not retained the legitimate additional "and" in Micah, assuming they are using a MT edition that has identical Hebrew). The ESV has consistently rendered the Hebrew word as "come" in both verses --
    and many peoples shall come, and say:
    "Come, let us go up to the mountain of the Lord,
    to the house of the God of Jacob, that he may teach us his ways
    and that we may walk in his paths." For out of Zion shall go the law,
    and the word of the Lord from Jerusalem. (Isaiah 2:3)


    and many nations shall come, and say:
    "Come, let us go up to the mountain of the Lord,
    --- to the house of the God of Jacob, that he may teach us his ways
    and that we may walk in his paths." For out of Zion shall go forth the law,
    and the word of the Lord from Jerusalem. (Micah 4:2)


    The NKJV has also omitted the "and" in Micah to make the English identical except for the words "people" and "nations". Although the order is "of Zion" then "the law" in both NKJV passages, inexplicably the NKJV moves "shall go forth" to the end of Micah 4:2 --
    Many people shall come and say,
    "Come, and let us go up to the mountain of the LORD,
    To the house of the God of Jacob; He will teach us His ways,
    And we shall walk in His paths." For out of Zion shall go forth the law,
    And the word of the LORD from Jerusalem. (Isaiah 2:3)


    Many nations shall come and say,
    "Come, and let us go up to the mountain of the LORD,
    --- To the house of the God of Jacob; He will teach us His ways,
    And we shall walk in His paths." For out of Zion the law shall go forth,
    And the word of the LORD from Jerusalem. (Micah 4:2)


    The NIV makes no distinction between the verses (after "people"/"nations") --
    Many peoples will come and say,
    "Come, let us go up to the mountain of the Lord,
    to the house of the God of Jacob. He will teach us his ways,
    so that we may walk in his paths." The law will go out from Zion,
    the word of the Lord from Jerusalem. (Isaiah 2:3)


    Many nations will come and say,
    "Come, let us go up to the mountain of the Lord,
    --- to the house of the God of Jacob. He will teach us his ways,
    so that we may walk in his paths." The law will go out from Zion,
    the word of the Lord from Jerusalem. (Micah 4:2)


    All of the above English versions are consistent in their pattern "of Zion" in respect to "the law" (although four seem to invert the Hebrew word order). Also, notice that all these versions consistently begin each verse with the same word (either "And" or "Many", none have "But"). Finally, none of the above versions have inserted "ye" following the word "Come" (although the ASV does have "ye" in both Isaiah and Micah, but "ye" was removed in the NASB).

    The NASB had several differences between verses; notice that the order of "from Zion" with "the law" (the complete opposite pattern as found in the KJV) --
    And many peoples will come and say,
    "Come, let us go up to the mountain of the LORD,
    To the house of the God of Jacob; That He may teach us concerning His ways
    And that we may walk in His paths." For the law will go forth from Zion
    And the word of the LORD from Jerusalem. (Isaiah 2:3)


    --- Many nations will come and say,
    "Come and let us go up to the mountain of the LORD
    And to the house of the God of Jacob, That He may teach us about His ways
    And that we may walk in His paths." For from Zion will go forth the law,
    Even the word of the LORD from Jerusalem. (Micah 4:2)
     
    #11 franklinmonroe, Mar 4, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 4, 2009
  12. Salamander

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    Nice to see some one offer commentaries in a BV&T forum which could only amount to __________:thumbs:
     
  13. franklinmonroe

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    No one has even a guess at any of these questions?
     
  14. franklinmonroe

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    Is anyone else surprised at the number of differences made by a supposed 'highly literal' translation (between two verses that apparently only differ by one letter in Hebrew)? Should we wonder about the amount of 'license' that translators are using with other passages?
     
    #14 franklinmonroe, Mar 13, 2009
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