Come or go? Isaiah 2 & Micah 4

Discussion in 'Bible Versions/Translations' started by franklinmonroe, Nov 9, 2013.

  1. franklinmonroe

    franklinmonroe
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    Micah 4:1-4 above in red, Isaiah 2:2-4 in green below

    But in the last days it shall come to pass,
    And it shall come to pass in the last days,
    that the mountain of the house of the LORD
    that the mountain of the LORD'S house
    shall be established in the top of the mountains,
    shall be established in the top of the mountains,
    and it shall be exalted above the hills;
    and - shall be exalted above the hills;
    and --- people shall flow unto it.
    and all nations shall flow unto it.

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

    And he shall judge among many people,
    And he shall judge among - the nations,
    and ----- rebuke strong nations afar off;
    and shall rebuke many people:
    and they shall beat their swords into plowshares,
    and they shall beat their swords into plowshares,
    and their spears into pruninghooks:
    and their spears into pruninghooks:
    nation shall not lift up a sword against nation,
    nation shall not lift up -- sword against nation,
    neither shall they learn war any more.
    neither shall they learn war any more.
    The same word in Hebrew is both "come" and "go"?
     
    #1 franklinmonroe, Nov 9, 2013
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  2. Deacon

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    הָלַךְ vb. go, come, walk Qal I. lit. 1. of persons a. go, proceed, move, walk. b. depart, go away. c. less oft. where Eng. idiom requires or prefers come, (approach, arrive), vb. in Heb. being referred to starting point; mostly c. prep. (on usage c. prep. in gen. v. infr.). ...

    Whitaker, R., Brown, F., Driver, S. R. (Samuel R., & Briggs, C. A. (Charles A. (1906). The Abridged Brown-Driver-Briggs Hebrew-English Lexicon of the Old Testament: from A Hebrew and English Lexicon of the Old Testament by Francis Brown, S.R. Driver and Charles Briggs, based on the lexicon of Wilhelm Gesenius. Boston; New York: Houghton, Mifflin and Company.
     
  3. jonathan.borland

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    Yeah, it's the same Hebrew word in both places, the common HALAK (הלך) which means to walk/go.
     
  4. franklinmonroe

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    OK. But how can it be both at the same time? The passages and contexts are (virtually) identical in Isaiah and Micah. Shouldn't it be either "come" or "go" in both quotations of this oracle?
     
  5. jonathan.borland

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    A good question to ask a KJVO proponent. Two exact phrases may be translated differently due to a translator's preference. But to the KJVO fanatic: Which translator got it perfect, since "things that are different are not the same"?
     
  6. Deacon

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    The passage is talking about the "mountain of the Lord"
    Follow the couplet.

    Isaiah 2:2–3 (AV 1873)
    And all nations shall flow unto it.
    And many people shall go

    Micah 4:1–2 (AV 1873)
    And people shall flow unto it.
    And many nations shall come

    Not a whole lot of different there! In both texts they are going there.

    My guess is that the translators of Isaiah in the AV wanted to make a distinction between two different Hebrew words:
    The "go" and the "Come" of the following line.

    And many people shall go and say, Come ye, 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 we will walk in his paths: For out of Zion shall go forth the law, And the word of the LORD from Jerusalem.
    Isaiah 2:3 (AV 1873)

    Rob
     
  7. Inspector Javert

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    :thumbs::thumbs:I agree with the above post....I thought initially to say as much, (I was gonna post this last night) but, then I assumed that I'd be assaulted as a "KJVO fanatic" or something merely because I didn't see this as a chance to take a big fat wet hot steaming dump on the KJV...so I avoided the conflict. But since Deacon brought it up:

    Truth is:
    Those statements together are not actually explicitly contradictory statements. They can BOTH be true, even as rendered into English.

    Reading Young's Literal helped me...BOTH verses are translated exactly the same:
    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,

    Reading both of the entire verses (read as a couplet as Deacon suggests) we learn that two things are true:

    1.) People from all nations shall come and/or go to the mountain
    2.) Those SAME PEOPLE will also SAY "come...let us go".

    Those people are "saying" and also "coming"...that's not a contradiction.

    Every post so far is correct:
    The Hebrew verb הָלַךְ means "go/walk/come" and it's in the Qal imperitive in both cases.

    But it's not explicitly contradictory. Both passages read together yield the idea that BOTH statements are essentially true.
     
    #7 Inspector Javert, Nov 11, 2013
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  8. Van

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    I do not think come or go presents a problem, but the lack of consistent translation is a problem. Therefore the translations that present the most consistent translation would, to my mind, be better.

    1) Why translate the same phrase house of the Lord in one passage, and the Lord's house in another passage. The NASB has "mountain of the house of the Lord" in both passages.

    2) Willy nilly translation creates artificial differences and obscures actual ones.
     
  9. Deacon

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    From the Preface to the KJV

    THE TRANSLATORS TO THE READER

    Reasons inducing us not to stand curiously upon an identity of phrasing

    Another thing we think good to admonish thee of, gentle reader: that we have not tied ourselves to an uniformity of phrasing, or to an identity of words, as some peradventure would wish that we had done, because they observe that some learned men somewhere have been as exact as they could that way. Truly, that we might not vary from the sense of that which we had translated before, if the word signified the same thing in both places (for there be some words that be not of the same sense everywhere [πολυσημα]), we were especially careful, and made a conscience according to our duty. But that we should express the same notion in the same particular word, as for example, if we translate the Hebrew or Greek word once by purpose, never to call it intent; if one where journeying, never travelling; if one where think, never suppose; if one where pain, never ache; if one where joy, never gladness, etc — thus, to mince the matter, we thought to savor more of curiosity than wisdom, and that rather it would breed scorn in the atheist than bring profit to the godly reader. For is the kingdom of God become words or syllables? Why should we be in bondage to them if we may be free, use one precisely when we may use another no less fit, as commodiously? A godly Father in the Primitive time showed himself greatly moved, that one of newfangleness called κραββατον, "σκιμπους" ["a bed"; Niceph. Calist. lib.8. cap.42.], though the difference be little or none; and another reporteth that he was much abused for turning "cucurbita" (to which reading the people had been used) into "hedera" [S. Hieron. in 4. Ionae. See S. Aug. epist. 10.]. Now if this happen in better times, and upon so small occasions, we might justly fear hard censure, if generally we should make verbal and unnecessary changings. We might also be charged (by scoffers) with some unequal dealing towards a great number of good English words. For as it is written of a certain great philosopher, that he should say , that those logs were happy that were made images to be worshipped, for their fellows, as good as they, lay for blocks behind the fire; so if we should say, as it were, unto certain words, "Stand up higher; have a place in the Bible always," and to others of like quality, "Get ye hence; be banished forever," we might be taxed peradventure with St. James his words, namely, "To be partial in ourselves, and judges of evil thoughts." Add hereunto, that niceness in words was always counted the next step to trifling, and so was to be curious about names, too; also, that we cannot follow a better pattern for elocution than God Himself; therefore, He using divers words, in His holy writ, and indifferently for one thing in nature [leptologia;/ adolescia;/ το σρουδαξεινεπι ονομασι; see Euseb. προπαρασκευ. li. 12. ex Platon.], we, if we will not be superstitious, may use the same liberty in our English versions out of Hebrew and Greek, for that copy or store that He hath given us. Lastly, we have on the one side avoided the scrupulosity of the Puritans, who leave the old ecclesiastical words and betake them to other, as when they put washing for baptism, and congregation instead of church; as also on the other side we have shunned the obscurity of the Papists, in their azimes, tunic, rational, holocausts, praepuce, pasche, and a number of such like, whereof their late translation is full — and that of purpose to darken the sense, that since they must needs translate the Bible, yet by the language thereof, it may be kept from being understood. But we desire that the Scripture may speak like itself, as in the language of Canaan, that it may be understood even of the very vulgar.
     
  10. Jerome

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  11. jonathan.borland

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  12. Van

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    The KJV translators offer up one specious argument after another to justify willy nilly translation. Lets consider them one by one:


    1) The KJV translators did not “tie” themselves to “uniformity of phrasing.” Thus when the Inspired Word uses “uniformity of phrasing” the translators introduced the corruption of diversity of phrasing.
    2) The KJV translators did not “tie” themselves to “the identity of words.” Thus when the Inspired Word uses the same word to convey the same sense in multiple locations, they introduced the corruption of diversity for style’s sake.
    3) The KJV translators claimed they wanted to engender curiosity by mincing words. They should have translated concordantly, putting the uniformity found in the inspired word before their readers.
    4) The KJV translators say they should not be bound to use one English word when another is just as fit. But God used one word in the original language; why not convey that uniformity by using one word in the target language?
    5) The KJV translators suggest the willy nilly translation was calculated more to breed scorn in the atheist rather than bring profit to the godly reader. Hopefully I am missing the point.
    6) The KJV translators might justly fear hard censure, if generally they “should make verbal and unnecessary changings.” They did and they were wrong!
    7) The KJV translators then make the strawman argument that they did not treat equally all the English words conveying the same notion. Next they seem to try to justify willy nilly translation as not showing partiality to one of the English words that convey a notion. Really.
    8) God did use diversity in His expressions, but also uniformity, and to obliterate the uniformity by introducing diversity not found in His Inspired Word is wrong.
    9) Next they attempt to justify the lack of concordance within their translation by correctly pointing out they did not follow the translation choices in other translations. Again, not the issue.
    10) Finally, they say they want Scripture to speak like itself, yet by obliterating distinctions drawn, and creating differences where none exist, they have purposely kept it from being understood as written.​
     
  13. franklinmonroe

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    Thanks, Rob.
    Doesn't "come" indicate that from the writers point of view that the people are moving in his direction, while "go" indicates the movement is away or not towards his present location?
    I believe the same company of the king's revisers constructed the renderings of both passages.
     
  14. franklinmonroe

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    I wanted to see how this same topic might develop differently than it did previously. You are sharp.
     
  15. franklinmonroe

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    Preference is allowable if the two resulting phrases still have essentially the same meaning. I don't think "come" and "go" have the same meaning. My dog knew these words as precisely opposite commands.
     
  16. jonathan.borland

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    Someone calls you while you're in your high-rise apartment building and heading out the door. You tell him "I'm coming down now," or, "I'm going down now." Not much difference, is there now?
     
  17. Inspector Javert

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  18. franklinmonroe

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    I agree that either is understandable in ordinary everyday speech. However, what is actually behind the expressions is different: "I'm coming down now" communicates that I'm moving toward the other person in relationship to their present location; "I'm going down now" is much less precise and really only communicates downward motion without regard to the other person's position.
     
    #18 franklinmonroe, Nov 15, 2013
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