Textual varient in Dan 2:13

Discussion in 'Bible Versions/Translations' started by evangelist6589, Nov 2, 2015.

  1. evangelist6589

    evangelist6589
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    The NKJV says the following

    So the decree went out, and they began killing the wise men; and they sought Daniel and his companions, to kill them.

    However the ESV/NIV/KJV do not say this so I have to wonder what translation is right and what ones are wrong. I am not skilled in the original languages so I can only look at commentaries and after looking at what John Walvoord had to say, he seems to not be sure on whether or not the wise men were killed or not. However looking at the CONTEXT of the passage it would seem that the wise men were rounded up, but were not yet killed, so this would make the NKJV wrong in this verse. What do you say?
     
  2. Don

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    Interesting. The KJV indicates "slain." The word seems to mean "to slay"; and is connected to a word that literally means "slay," but figuratively means "to cut off." Gill, Poole, and Henry seem to agree that at least some of the magicians were killed, if only to evidence how cruel and unjust the king was.

    Waiting to hear from some of our more learned and more intelligent compadres.
     
  3. Scarlett O.

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    I looked at Biblehub.com and Young's Literal Translation is the only other one there that states the wise men were already being killed. The rest there imply that they were being rounded up TO be killed and verse 24 teaches that Daniel prevented the executioner from carrying out the command.
     
    #3 Scarlett O., Nov 2, 2015
    Last edited: Nov 2, 2015
  4. Deacon

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    It is not really a variant, the Hebrew text is the same.
    The "variant" exists only in the translation of English texts.

    John Walvoord correctly is unsure because the text is unclear in this regard.
    You recognised this by reading the context and recognised that at least some of the wise, including Daniel were not killed.

    Rob
     
  5. Van

    Van
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    According to the NET footnote (24) the difference in translation is driven by a difference in the understanding of the grammar. The NET footnote says the "Aramaic article" indicates the action is imminent. However, if you look at an interlinear, the literal meaning of the word associated with the article is "ones being dispatched (killed). So differing understandings of the grammar drive the difference. As indicated above, the majority of English versions agree with the NET understanding of the grammar. The majority includes the NASB, NET, HCSB, LEB, and WEB.
     
  6. TCassidy

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    The participle מִתְקַטְּלִין does not stand for the preterite (past action that is seen as completed), but has the meaning: the work of putting to death was begun. The participle also does not stand as the gerund (a noun made from a verb): they were to be put to death, i.e., were condemned, for the use of the passive participle as the gerund is denied by reference to 2:45 and 2:31.

    The best way to understand the verse is "and the decree went forth that the wise men were beginning to be slain; and they sought Daniel and his fellows to be slain."

    They started killing them but did not finish due to Daniel's intervention.
     
  7. Van

    Van
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    Yes, you can find translations that refer to future action (about to be killed, etc) to present action (being killed) and past action (have been killed). But the vast majority translate it as a future action.
     
  8. Jerome

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    Calvin ruled that:

    regarding v. 13
    "It appears from these words that some of the wise men had been slain"

    regarding v. 24
    "some of the Magi were slain, as I have said."

    Hence the Geneva Bible has

    v. 13 "And when sentence was given, the wise men were slain:"

    and a marginal note at v. 24 stands pat: "whereby appeareth that many were slain, as v. 13"
     
  9. TCassidy

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    In order for the translation to be grammatically correct to the Hebrew it would have to read "And the decree went forth that the wise men should begin to be slain; and they sought Daniel and his fellows to be slain." It is important to note the non-preterite use of מִתְקַטְּלִין.
     
  10. Jerome

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    Hebrew? or Aramaic?
     
  11. Deacon

    Deacon
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    Yes, it's Aramaic ... but a late Hebrew loanword.

    Rob
     
  12. TCassidy

    TCassidy
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    Bear in mind that the language spoken during the captivity was Aramaic (Chaldean) written with Hebrew morphology. And during that time there were many neologisms introduced into the vocabularies of the Jews.

    So, your answer is "yes." :D
     

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