Psalm 12 Revisited

Discussion in '2003 Archive' started by Dr. Bob, Dec 8, 2003.

  1. Dr. Bob

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    (Psalm 12 from the KJV1769 revision)
    What a beautiful Psalm. God is dealing with helping the poor and needy (like me). MEN are speaking lies; GOD'S word is different - it is pure.

    And what is His promise to these poor and needy (like me)? He will preserve me even though it looks like the wicked and evil prevail.

    This is not a Psalm like 119 that is centered on the Word of God. Psam 12's subject is poor and needy men and God's promise to them that is different than the words of man.

    Just wonder, when looking at the entire Psalm, how folks come up with the KJVO stuff?

    You have my thoughts; what are yours?
     
  2. tinytim

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    Dr. Bob it's easy to see why the KJVO people use verses 6 and 7.. since they only quote these two verses it *sounds* like it's dealing with the preservation of God's words.
    I know God's words are pure. That's why I trust God. He will never lie.
    A little something going on in my life...
    My son takes seizures. Drs. thought they knew where the seizures were coming from in the brain. On Oct 2 my son had surgery to remove that part of brain tissue. We were convinced that God was going to heal him. During surgery we held tight to the promise verses on prayer.. you know, "....anything faith beleiving" etc.
    He wasn't healed. He still takes 1 to 2 a day.
    My Point --- Did God lie in those verses? Of course not. We just don't see the whole picture.
    God sees the eternal picture. My son is saved. If God chooses to take him home tommorrow, God is still "preserving" him.
    The KJVO crowd needs to think past the here and now and realize that God needs no help in preserving his word. He doesn't need people to twist passages to fit their belief. He is GOD! It's up to him to keep his word like he promised in other passages. Let God be God.

    ps. God is not my KJV Bible
     
  3. LarryN

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    C'mon Dr. Bob,

    If you're going to expect that nobody quotes verses out of context, some people just may have to re-examine some of their beliefs.

    Why, next you'll be trying to tell me that David wasn't the earthly father of Jesus, and that Abraham wasn't His grandfather; as Matthew 1:1 so plainly states:

    "The book of the generation of Jesus Christ, the son of David, the son of Abraham."- (KJV)

    :D
     
  4. RaptureReady

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  5. timothy 1769

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    Excellent article, Homebound. The case against these verses has been massively overstated by those who want absolute certainty for their position where it's just not to be found.

    from Homebound's article:

    THE ANTECEDENT QUESTION

    Words (verse 6) is the nearest likely antecedent to them (verse 7). In sentence structure we naturally expect the antecedent to the pronoun them to be close at hand. If it is at a distance we do not expect another likely antecedent to intervene. A survey of the themsin the first twenty-five Psalms gives a clear demonstration of this principle.

    A problem arises: Hebrew, like other languages, has grammatical gender, and here the pronoun them is masculine, while words is feminine. The more distant yet possible antecedents of verse five or verse one are masculine.

    While we may assume that gender agreement will occur between a pronoun and its antecedent, the following authorities acknowledge that frequently this is not the case.

    The standard Gesenius-Kautzsch-Cowley grammar says:

    ...masculine suffixes (especially in the plural) are not infrequently used to refer to feminine substantives, (#135-0).

    Also, the recent Hebrew grammar by Waltke and O'Conner:

    The masculine pronoun is often used for a feminine antecedent. (Introduction to Biblical Hebrew Syntax. Winona Lake, Indiana: Eisenbrauns Publ., 1990, #16.4b).

    In commenting on the passage itself, Rabbi Samson Hirsch writes:

    Thou O Lord wilt constantly keep them, Thy promises...The word [them] has a masculine ending in order to stress the constancy and immutability of these assurances. (Psalms. New York: Feldheim Publ., 1960, p.85)
     
  6. BrianT

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    The very mention of these exceptions, actually prove the rule. If David was intending "them" (masculine) to refer to "words" (feminine) instead of the "poor" and "needy" (both masculine), why not simply use the masculine form of "words" in the first place? It's not like that wasn't available. The Hebrew word for "words" in verse 6 is 'emrah (em-raw', Strong's #565). The masculine form of this word is 'emer (ay'-mer, Strong's #561), and has the exact same meaning - but it was not used.
     
  7. Daniel David

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    Translation: blah blah blah I can't hear you blah blah blah
     
  8. timothy 1769

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    Brian,

    Who knows? My point is the interpretation of this verse as only refering to the preservation of people is not supported by an airtight case, as many, including those who should know better, like to pretend. The interpretation that these verses do in fact refer to Bible preservation is NOT impossible or ridiculous, and it has been shown that this view has been held by both major Christian and Jewish commentators.

    It is, simply put, a reasonable position to hold.
     
  9. RaptureReady

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    Translation: blah blah blah I can't hear you blah blah blah </font>[/QUOTE]Is this the charismatic translation of the Bible? You speak it well. BTW, tongues is a false teaching.
     
  10. Daniel David

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    The doctrine of tongues is not false. There are tongues in Scripture.

    The perpetuity of tongues is not valid. If that is what you mean't, I agree.

    Your statement that you know nothing of the underlying texts demonstrate that you have zero business making determinations on the various readings.

    You have to blindly accept the popish, baby-sprinklin' version.

    I will take the version of choice for fundamentalists, the ASV (specifically its updated language, the NASB).
     
  11. Pastor_Bob

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    I have posted this essay once before, but this seems like a good place to post it again.

    Pastor Bob

    THE GENIUS OF AMBIGUITY -- The Translational and Exegetical Rendering of Psalm 12:7 Primarily Considered in the Churchly Tradition of the 16th And 17th Centuries and Its Expression in the Reformation English Bibles , By Peter Van Kleeck

    "The appropriate interpretation of Psalm 12:7 is not without question in the churchly tradition. Problems arise from the textual base chosen for the translation, Greek-Latin or Hebrew ... Contemporary Bible versions and the reciprocating confirmation of each other's validity give the dogmatic impression that as a result of new and better methodologies, the modern rendering is best and that past problems have been resolved.

    A casual perusal of the popular literature on the subject of Bible texts and versions will show, however, that the Reformational Churches' expression of their common faith in Scripture's providential preservation of the texts in their possession is evaluated in an unsympathetic and pejorative manner. Scholars such as Bruce M. Metzger and Kurt Aland discredit the value of the Reformation Greek texts and subsequently the English Bibles on textual grounds. Metzger, giving a standard reply, writes,

    "Partly because of this catchword [Textus Receptus] the form of the Greek text incorporated in the editions that Stephanus, Beza, and the Elzevirs had published succeeded in establishing itself as 'the only true text' of the New Testament, and was slavishly reprinted in hundreds of subsequent editions.

    It lies at the basis of the King James Version and of all the principal Protestant translations in the languages of Europe prior to 1881. So superstitious has been the reverence accorded the Textus Receptus that in some cases attempts to criticize or emend it have been regarded as akin to sacrilege" (Metzger, The Text of the New Testament, Oxford University Press, 1968, p. 106).

    "What these writers fail to say is that the Authorized Version is not an ad hoc English translation, but stands at the end of the 16th century English Bible tradition. ... To deny the Authorized Version on textual grounds is to do the same for the Bishops, Geneva, Great, Coverdale, Matthews and Tyndale Bibles going back to 1524.

    It also questions the scholarship of the Protestant exiles of Mary's romanish persecution who had escaped to the safe haven of Geneva as well as the value of every 16th and 17th century commentator who based his work on Erasmus' Greek New Testament.

    "The bifurcation of the Reformation Bible tradition and the post-19th century English Bibles is seen in the New Revised Standard Version render[ing of] Psalm 12:7, "You O Lord, will protect us; you will guard us from this generation forever."

    In a similar manner, the New International Version translates verse 7, "O Lord, you will keep us safe and protect us from such people forever."

    In spite of Biblia Hebraica Stuttgartensia reading "keep them" and "preserve him," both the NRSV and NIV have elected not to translate the Hebrew and have, in its place, substituted a translation from the Greek and Latin rendering of these two pronouns. By so doing, the editors of these translations have endorsed one exegetical tradition, the Greek- Latin, to the exclusion of the other, the Hebraic, and by doing so have censured any further debate within the Hebrew exegetical tradition itself. ...

    "This essay will show the diversity of the textual and exegetical tradition of Psalm 12:6-7 ... By so doing, the inadequacy of modern renditions of Psalm 12:7 will be exposed...

    "Michael Ayguan (1340-1416) ... On Psalm 12:7 Ayguan comments, Keep them: that is, not as the passage is generally taken, Keep or guard Thy people, but Thou shalt keep, or make good, Thy words: and by doing so, shalt preserve him--him, the needy, him, the poor--from this generation...

    "Martin Luther's German Bible ... Following the arrangement of this Psalm, Luther penned a hymn, two stanzas of which reflect his understanding of verse 6 and 7: ... "Thy truth thou wilt preserve, O Lord, from this vile generation..." In poetic form, Luther grasps the significance of this verse both for the preservation of those who are oppressed and for the Word of God. The two-pronged significance of this interpretation to both people and God's words in Luther's Psalter was to have wide-ranging significance in the English Bible tradition.

    "Calvin's Commentary on the Psalms ... in the body of the commentary he writes, 'Some give this exposition of the passage, Thou wilt keep them, namely, thy words; but this does not seem to me to be suitable." [Thus while Calvin did not believe Psalm 12:7 referred to the Word of God, he admits that others did hold this view in his day.]

    "Coverdale Bible, 1535 ... reads for [verse 7] of Psalm 12: "Keep them therefore (O Lord) and preserve us from this generation for ever." With the absence of "Thou shalt" to begin verse 7, there is a direct connection between 'words' and 'keep them.' In the first clause, Coverdale intended the words to be kept; in the second clause people are in view..."

    "The Matthew Bible 1537. ... In Psalm 12:67 Rogers translated, "The words of the Lord are pure words as the silver, which from the earth is tried and purified vii times in the fire. Keep them therefore (O Lord) and preserve us from this generation for ever." Following Coverdale, Rogers makes a clear connection in his translation between the words being the antecedent to "them." ... The significance of Roger's marginal note is that two of the greatest Hebrew scholars referred to by the Reformation writers differed on the interpretation of "them" in Psalms 12:7. [Thus we see that the interpretation of this verse was also divided among Jewish scholars.]

    "The Third Part of the Bible, 1550. Taken from Becke's text of 1549 this edition of the scriptures contains the Psalter, Proverbs, Ecclesiastes and the Song of Songs. ... In verse 7 there is a note at them which states, 'some understand here certain men, some others word." Again, the translators and exegetes allowed breadth of interpretation of "them" to include people and words.

    "The Geneva Bible, 1560. ... The preface reads, "Then comforting himself and others with the assurance of God's help, he commendeth the constant vigil that God observeth in keeping his promises." The text reads, "The words of the Lord are pure words, as the silver, tried in a furnace of earth, fined seven fold. Thou wilt keep them, O Lord: Thou wilt preserve him from this generation forever." [The margin reads, "Because the Lords word and promise is true and unchangeable, he will perform it and preserve the poor from this wicked generation." Thus the Geneva took a position that verse 7 applies both to the preservation of the Bible and of God's people.]

    "Annotations by Henry Ainsworth, 1626. Briggs commends Ainsworth as the "prince of Puritan commentators" and that his commentary on the Psalms is a "monument of learning." ... Ainsworth states that "the sayings" [of Psalm 12:7] are "words" or "promises" that are "tried" or "examined" "as in a fire." He cross references the reader to Psalm 18:31; 119:140; and Proverbs 30:5, each reference having to do with the purity of the word.

    "Matthew Poole's 1685 Commentary of the Psalms ... writes at verse seven, "Thou shalt keep them; either, 1. The poor and needy, ver. 5 ... Or, 2. Thy words or promises last mentioned, ver. 6. ...

    "In summary ... [t]he only sure conclusion is that there is no consensus within the English Bible tradition for the interpretation of "them" in Psalm 12:7 and it was precisely this lack of agreement within the tradition which was the genius of the ambiguity of the King James Version's rendering. ... by choosing a Greek-Latin basis the modern versions elect to overlook the Reformation's Hebrew basis for translation in Psalm 12:6-7; and the churchly tradition in the new versions is censored by not including a translation that is broad enough to include both interpretations--oppressed people and God's words" (Peter Van Kleeck, The Translational and Exegetical Rendering of Psalm 12:7 Primarily Considered in the Churchly Tradition of the 16th and 17th Centuries and Its Expression in the Reformation English Bibles: The Genius of Ambiguity, March 1993).
     
  12. Pastor_Bob

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    For those who are interested, here is a link to a thread in the archives where this topic was discussed at length.

    CLICK HERE
     
  13. Askjo

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  14. robycop3

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    Actually, the discussion of whether Ps. 12:7 refers to words or people is ambiguous, as all Baptists believe God has indeed preserved His word. The REAL question is, "Where was the word of God in English before 1611?"

    The KJVOs won't give us a straight answer because any CORRECT straight answer, I.E. "It was in the Geneva Bible, Bishop's Bible, etc." begs the question, "Each of them is different from each other and from the AV 1611. You agree that God's words were pure from the very instant He said them, & that He's preserved them, so which of those old versions was God's perfect word, and why did the AV translators change them?"

    Several KJVOs have made the ridiculous assertion that God took six versions to purify His word in English, so evidently they don't believe David, who actually SPOKE with God & said, under His inspiration, that His words were pure. And since when couldn't God get it right the first time, every time? AND WHO DECREES WHAT'S RIGHT AND WRONG, ANYWAY????????

    Me? I believe that GOD CAN DO ANYTHING, and that He's under no obligation to anyone for anything, and that He can, and does, present His word to us IN ANY FORM(S) HE CHOOSES, without regard to man's silly theories that try to tell Him how some men believe He should do it.

    While the discussion of as to what Ps. 12:7 is referring is interesting, it in no way makes any brownie points for the Onlyist myth either way no matter what the answer truly is. It comes right back to preservation, and as by what authority the KJVOs reject any other BV. It isn't found in Scripture, & without any authority, the Onlyist is left with a sack of air for the substance of his theory.
     
  15. Charles Meadows

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    I think Dr Bob Griffin's point is well-taken. The point of the psalm is the preservation of people and not words!

    The word choices shed some light but as always there is so much overlap. The psalms tend to employ the more poetic noun forms which are often feminine. Imrah instead of emer, tsdaqah instead of tsedeq etc... The root of imrah is 'amar which has at its root the concept of revealing - not as much the idea of actual words on paper (more likely to use the word davar). But there is always overlap. Masculinization of antecedents does occur - but this is not really a strong argument for the "them" interpretation since it would be an exception to the rule.

    I'm probably gonna get blasted for this last one by somebody but here it goes!!

    The Septuagint renders it "hemas" - a pronoun that definitely means "us" and not "them". Not that the Septuagint is Scripture - but it does sometimes let us see how Jews of the second temple period thought and interpreted Scripture. :rolleyes:
     
  16. Aaron

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    Let's say that verses six and seven are speaking of the words of the Lord, (though I take Dr. Bob's position on this point,) how does that support KJVO?

    How can anyone look at the evidence for the integrity of the surviving Biblical manuscripts and not see the divine hand in all this?
     
  17. Singleman

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    Any novel interpretation of a Scripture passage has to come under suspicion, in my opinion. If it's so obvious that Psalm 12 refers to God's preservation of His word in the KJV, why was this only realized relatively recently? Even the KJV translators seem to have been unaware of this fact.
    [​IMG]
     
  18. robycop3

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    By asserting that Ps 12:6-7 is about God's words, the KJVOs have fired a heat-seeking missile that's boomeranged & turned upon its source. Since God had already presented His words to the English, using men who thought enough of getting those words to the common people in their own language, who worked in constant peril, with some paying with their earthly lives.(Tyndale, Cranmer, for instance) Now, who can deny God was behind this translating of His word? Despite the mighty efforts of the RCC to stop it, GOD PREVAILED, and the English speakers were given His word in English.

    Now, according to Ps 12:6, God's words were pure when He forst spoke them. They're compared to silver purified 7 times, not purified themselves. Whoever started the silly notion that God's words needed to be purified should go back to 3rd grade English since apparently he/she doesn't know what "as" means.

    At any rate, God has shown us that He is NOT limited to just one version whatsoever.

    I see that this is yet another assertion by a non-onlyist to which the KJVOs have had no response so far., as this isn't the first time this point has been made on this board. How about it, KJVOs? This is a BASIC ISSUE OF YOUR MYTH. You have a perfect record so far-ZERO!
     
  19. Dr. Bob

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    The text was drummed up by English-reading "onlies" who need sham support for their sect.

    My thinking is that few of the "only" sect have 5-6 years of Greek or 2-3 years of Hebrew from credable schools.

    Among my crowd - historic ifb'ers - we have Central, Detroit, Calvary, Faith, Maranatha Baptist seminaries; we also use good evangelical schools like Dallas, Westminister, Grace, Trinity.

    I am trying to think of many "onlies" that have come out of these schools???
     
  20. Askjo

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    Central Seminary -- Dr. Douglas R. McLachlan does not believe that God has preserved accurately His Words. Why?

    A professor at the Central Seminary wrote: "Even non-English Bibles must be translared out of the KJV rather than the Greek/Hebrew." Why did he answer FALSELY?
     

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