« AnteriorContinuar »
Kupis, say the LXX. that is, he cut off berith, or disposed the disposition of the Lord for them, or, as we would say, gave them the sacrament. All this he could do as a priest; and then, as a loyal fellow-subject, na IV, ishbo athem, he entered into an oath, or was sworn, with them. What is to be gathered from all this, will be seen as we go along. By the roes and by the hinds of the field. This is called the form of adjuring, and the rural simplicity of it is much extolled by those who admire Solomon's Song as a pastoral; though, even in that sense, it may be a question whether the women of Jerusalem in those days were so much taken up or acquainted with roes and hinds as this application supposes them: And much more is it to be doubted, if an inspired writer would have debased the sacred solemnity of adjuring by such a mean-looking form as this appears to be. I do not meet with such another instance in all Scripture; and, without some such warrant, all the Pindars and, Anacreons that can be produced have no weight with me. Neither do I see any thing in our Poet's own language that requires it. What it could be that has made our translators call the first word roes, I cannot find out. The LXX. call it Suya plecu, powers, which certainly has no connexion with roes. The original - word is way, that word which constitutes the well known, because so frequently given, title, JEHOVAH SABAOTH, Lord of Hosts; and which, by all expositors hitherto, has been interpreted to denote his universal dominion over all the
,צבאה שמים quently find
hosts of heaven and earth. It is with the utmost diffidence and reluctance that I allow myself to dissent from such a respectable generality; especially from two of them, the late Mess. Hutchinson and Bate, for whose memory I have the sincerest veneration; and to whose useful, though by inany undervalued, labours, I acknowledge myself deeply indebted. Yet upon
the present subject, I cannot help saying that I find nothing in scripture to justify this so general interpretation. The host of heaven' I fre
. , tzeba hashemim, the host; which, on the principles of philosophy maintained by these learned writers, may be applicable enough there, though I much question, whether on the same principles the word tzeba can be properly and consistently applied to the earth. Indeed, we have the plural word • hosts' once, I think by the context, applied to the powers of heaven: • Bless
ye • his hosts'_99833, tzebaiu, masculine; but the word under consideration is feminine, tzebauth. The root is 83%, tzeba, to minister, meet in troops, or attend; as a noun spatic in Greek,' exercitus' in Lat. which we call • army; but literally, exercise, or service, either in a civil or religious sense. Hence the writers I have in my eye apply it to deer and goats, because they meet in troops, which I think other creatures do as much as they, wolves, coneys, sheep, &c. And, lest this should not be sufficient, it is said that this root has affinity, as the Hebrew grammarians call it, with the verb :758, tzebe, to swell, swell up, or be blown up, and so denotes the goat or deer, which they say is a turgid swelling creature. This application is founded on the interchanging of the two final letters, s aleph or a, and
gramI Psalm ciii. 21,
he or e, in the several roots where they are found; which is yet far from being certain. For in turning over the Lexicons, we shall scarce meet with an instance where this absolutely holds; but, on the other hand, shall find numbers where these two final letters make a material difference; as Nup, quena, to be jealous, and 7737, quene, to purchase ; metza, to find, and 1739, metze, to squeeze ; NV, shena, to hate, and 1718, shenc, to change, with sundry more, where critics have observed that the translations have lost the sense sometimes by confounding the finals. For usage makes a rule of it, that tho' the final -7 he, when mutable, which is not always, may be, and is turned into » jod, or yvau, or tau, in the various deflections, or lost altogether; yet it is never changed into x aleph, which, when final, is as immutable a radical as any of the eleven that are never serviles; and which, though in the pointed grammars, it be called quiescent, and a foolish pother made about a paradigma of it accordingly through all the forms, yet still appears, and keeps its place without any transmutation or omission whatever. ' Upon this rule, so invariably established, and which I have been at all possible pains to look into, I cannot allow NSB, tzeba; or 1733, tzebe, to be so similar as to interchange senses, or lend derivations to one another. So that tho 158 rzebi, or 07938, tzebie, which I find to be a creature of the deer genus, may by rule come from ous, tzebe, to swell or be prominent, it will not follow, either hy rule or necessity of construction, that our word rzebauth, coming so naturally from tzeba, an entirely different root, should signify any such creature. And if there must be such a community of signification between tzeba and tzebe, as that tzeba may lend a derivative to the signification of tzebe, I would wish to know why tzebe is not so friendly on the other hand, as sometimes to give some of its known and regular derivatives to the use of our word szebauth, in one or other of the many positions in which it occurs, which we do not find that it has ever done; and the want of which on that side, I take to be a strong exception to the interchanging scheme, upon which this ungrammatical rendering of tzebuuth is founded.
H h 2
rivations * Exod. vii. 4.
Let us now see how usage stands with this word : And here I have in general observed, that for the most part, except in Jerem. iii. 19. which shall be considered afterwards, it is applied either to the people of Israel, or to Jehovah. The first time we find it, Jehovah takes it to himself', · I will bring • forth yw3, izebauthi, my armies, my people, &c. In another place, he applies it to the people,
,כל צבאות יהוה historian more particularly calls them
%, tzebauthikem, 'your armies'. And, the
, kol tzebauth Jehova, all the hosts of the Lord, Teoc'n duvapeis Kupis, the whole power of the Lord, LXX. One should think that this mode of expression so early met with, and at such an important juncture, could not miss to lead to the meaning of the title Lord of hosts, since, if the people of Israel were the hosts of the Lord, it must follow that he is Lord of hosts, from his peculiar connexion with them. The tzebauth Jehovah here, cannot mean the hosts of heaven and earth: Why then should * Jehovah tzebauth' mean the Lord of these hosts? I need not quote the many places where this title
The Psalms, Prophets, and historical parts of scripture are full of it; all tending to shew that it signified something, in which these writers thought themselves intimately concerned. The 2d and 10th chapters of the book of Numbers are abundantly sufficient to shew us, who and what these tzebauth, hosts, were. The marshalling of the people of Israel, the then church, into four battalions, consisting each of three tribes under their respective princes, and forming a hollow square to enclose the Tabernacle and Sanctum Sanctorum, where
presence (the scripture calls it the residence or dwelling) of their God, as commanded and directed by Jehovah himself, appears to me an irrefragable demonstration in what it is, that this so emi
1 Exod. xii. 17.