Hebrew Research Center
May, 2010 Issue #053
Word of the Month – Gut
Word of the Month – Jungle
Name of the
Month – Lamech
of the Month – Henotheism?
Verse of the
Month – Genesis 2:12
MT Excerpt –
Excerpt – Life for Life
Biblical Word of the Month - Gut
By: Jeff A. Benner
I delight to do thy will, O my God:
yea, thy law is within my heart. (KJV, Psalm 40:8)
The word translated “heart” in this verse is not the Hebrew
word לב (lev, Strong's #3820), which means
“heart,” but מעה (meyah, Strong's #4578), which
means “gut” or “abdomen.” When King David wrote ותורתך
בתוך מעי (v’torat’kha betokh mey’ai / your torah is within my guts) he
was expressing a very concrete perception of God’s torah (a Hebrew word meaning
“teachings,” not “law”). Have you ever been so excited about something that
your guts moved or churned? David was so excited about God’s torah that it
caused his guts to move. This is the feeling that Job had when he said “My
guts boiled” (Job 30:27). Do our guts churn when we hear the teachings of
God like David did?
We often use the expression “I had a ‘gut’ feeling” and
refers to a thought that does not come from the mind, but from deep down in our
subconscious, the gut. I am of the opinion that these “gut” feelings are
sometimes God speaking to us, but our heart and mind (actually in Hebraic
thought the mind is in the heart, not the brain) are our own thoughts that
cloud over what God is speaking.
Modern Word of the Month - Jungle
By: Jeff A. Benner
Many Modern Hebrew words are transliterations of European
words. For instance the Modern Hebrew word for “telephone” is טלפון, which is pronounced telephone. The Modern
Hebrew word for a “jungle” is ג'ונגל, which is pronounced “jungle” (the letter ג is a “g” sound, but
when followed by the apostrophe it takes on a “j” sound in Modern Hebrew). This
Modern Hebrew word is a transliteration of the European word “jungle,” which is
found in English, Italian, German, Spanish, Polish and French.
According to Isaac Mozeson, world renowned for his work in
Edenics, the study of Semitic/Hebrew origin to words around the world, the word
jungle comes from the Semitic/Hebrew word יער (ya’ar, Strong's #3293). At first
glance there does not seem to be any connection between this Hebrew word and
“jungle,” that is until we examine the sound shifts that have occurred over
time. When a word is transferred from one language to another the sounds of
letters are swapped for other letters of similar sound. For example the Latin
word for foot is “ped” (where we get our words pedestrian and pedal). The “p”
is exchanged for the “f” (both sounds being made at the lips) and the “d” for
“t” (both sounds being made at the roof of the mouth just behind the teeth) and
the word “ped” becomes “fet” or “feet.”
In the case of the word יער, the י (y) is exchanged for
a “j,” the ע (a guttural stop) for
an “ng,” and the ר
(r) for an “l” and יער (ya’ar) becomes JuNGLe. The Ancient Hebrew
יער traveled through many different other
languages to become the European word jungle, which was then transliterated
back into Hebrew as ג'ונגל. Interestingly though, the Modern Hebrew word for a “forest” is
the Ancient Hebrew word יער.
Name of the Month - Lamech
By: Jeff A. Benner
The next name in our series from Genesis chapter 5 is
Methuselah, but was defined in issue #10, so we
will move onto the next name, למך (lemech, Strong's #3929).
This is one of the names in the Bible that is very difficult
to translate as the root of this word, למך, is not used anywhere in the Biblical text
and therefore the meaning of this root/word/name is impossible to determine
with any degree of accuracy. One possible interpretation is that this name is
the verb מוך (mok, Strong's #4134) meaning “low”
and prefixed by the letter ל meaning “to” – “to be low.” Other suggested meanings for this
root/word/name are powerful, robust and priest.
By: Jeff A. Benner
Q: What is Henotheism?
A: Most of us are familiar with
the terms polytheism (Latin for “belief in many gods”) and monotheism (Latin
for “belief in one god”). But not too many are familiar with the term
Henotheism, which also means “a belief in one god,” but refers to the
worshiping of only one god, but recognizes the existence of other gods.
In the Biblical text we find
references to all three belief systems. While polytheism is forbidden, it was
practiced by some Hebrews. On numerous occasions we read in the Bible of the
Hebrews worshipping Ba’al or Asherah alongside of Yahweh. Isaiah 43:10 is a
clear monotheistic view which states “before me there was no God formed, neither
shall there be after me.” Several passages in the book of Psalms imply a
more Henotheistic view.
God standeth in the congregation of
the mighty [El in Hebrew], he judgeth among the gods (KJV, Psalm
Among the gods there is none like
unto thee. (KJV, Psalm 86:8)
For the LORD is a great God, and a
great King above all gods. (KJV, Psalm 95:3)
By: Jeff A. Benner
הַהִוא טֹוב שָׁם
and the gold of that land is good:
there is bdellium and the onyx stone. (ASV)
This is the noun זהב (zahav) meaning "gold" and the prefix ו (ve)
meaning "and" – and gold.
This is the noun ארץ (erets) meaning "land" and the prefix ה (ha)
meaning "the" – the land.
This is the pronoun היא (hi) meaning she (referring to the land, a feminine noun), but
is written defectively as הוא. It is prefixed by the letter ה (ha)
meaning "the." While this literally translates as “the she,” it means
“that,” as in “that land.”
This word is usually
translated as “good” but more Hebraicly means “functional.”
This word means “there.”
This is the noun בדולח (bedolahh), probably meaning “amber,” with the prefix ה (ha)
meaning "the" – the amber.
This is the noun אבן (even) meaning "stone" and the prefix ו (ve)
meaning "and" – and a stone.
This is the noun שוהם (shoham), which is an unknown stone, possibly the onyx. It is
prefixed with the letter ה (ha) meaning "the" – the shoham. This word and the
previous one are joined together to mean “and the shoham stone.”
The following is a literal rendering of this verse from its
And [the] gold of that land [is]
functional, there [is the] amber and the shoham stone.
In following issues we will continue with this chapter.
17 and the flood existed forty days upon the land and
the water increased and lifted up the vessel and she rose from upon the land, 18
and the water overcame and increased much upon the land and the vessel walked
upon the face of the water, 19 and the water had overcome a great many
upon the land and concealed all of the high hills which are under all of the
sky, 20 fifteen forearms upward the water overcame and much concealed
the hills, 21 and all of the flesh expired, the treading ones upon the
land with the flyer and with the beast and with the living ones and with all of
the swarming swarmers upon the land and all of the humans, 22 all of the
ones which have the breath of the wind of the life in his nostrils, from all of
the ones which were in the wasteland died, 23 and he wiped away all of
the substance which was upon the face of the ground, from the human, as well as
the beast, as well as, the treader and also the flyer of the sky and they were wiped
away from the land and only “No'ahh [Rest]” remained and who were with
him in the vessel, 24 and the water overcame upon the land a hundred and
For details on this
new translation see the web site at
AHRC Website Excerpt – Life for Life
What does "life for life" mean? How about "eye for
an eye?" The King James Version translates Exodus 21:23-25 as, "And
if any mischief follow, then thou shalt give life for life, Eye for eye, tooth
for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot, Burning for burning, wound for wound,
stripe for stripe." In this translation is the phrase "life for
life" and implies that if you take a person’s life, your life is to be
taken. I do not believe this is what the verse is implying. The Hebrew
translation of "life for life" would be hhayim l'hhayim, but
this is not what is found in the Hebrew. The Hebrew reads nephesh tahhat
naphesh which means "being in place of being." I interpret this
to mean that if you take a life, such as that of a servant (see the previous
verses) or a beast, then you must replace that life.
The KJV translation of "eye for eye" also implies that if you take
the eye of another, then your eye must be taken. In the Hebrew, this phrase is
written as ayin tahhat ayin meaning "an eye in place of an
eye." If you take the eye of a person, then you must replace that eye. Of
course this cannot mean implanting a new eye, but instead, you must take
whatever measures are necessary to give that person what he needs in order to
compensate him for the missing eye. This might mean giving him a servant to see
for him or money to replace his lost wages.
This interpretation can be supported with the next two verses (26, 27) which
read as follows from the RMT. "but if a man will hit the eye of his
servant, or the eye of his bondwoman, and he damages her, he will send him to
freedom in place of his eye, and if the tooth of his
servant, or the tooth of his bondwoman is made to fall out, he will send him to
freedom in place of his tooth."
This article is
located on the web site at
We are always adding
new material to the AHRC and Mechanical Translation websites; here is what is
new on these websites.
I have completed the rough
draft of the video series “A History of Hebrew: Its Language and Philosophy.” I
have also begun a new video series titled “The Way of Yahweh.” Both of these
videos can be viewed on the home page (http://www.ancient-hebrew.org).
Once the final editing is completed on these videos they will also be available
in DVD format.
Do you have a comment
or personal insight into the articles in this issue of the E-Zine? If so, let us know.
His name [Enoch] also
means “to make narrow” in ancient Hebrew. Thus Enoch walked with God and he was
no more- what happen to Enoch? As he became closer to God he narrowed and all
that could be seen was God.
Did you find any errors
needing correction in the articles in this issue of the E-Zine? If so, let us know.
Translation of the Book of Exodus
by Jeff A. Benner
The Mechanical Translation of the Book of Exodus is the second
book in the Mechanical Translation of the Hebrew Bible series which literally
translates the book of Exodus using the "Mechanical Translation"
methodology and philosophy. This new and unique style of translation will
allow a reader who has no background in Hebrew to see the text from an
Hebraic perspective, without the interjection of a translators theological
opinions and bias. Because the translation method identifies the morphology
of each Hebrew word it is also a tool for those who are learning to read
Additional information and ordering details are available
through the bookstore.
Copyright © 2010
Jeff A. Benner
Ancient Hebrew Research
Please feel free to use, copy
or distribute any material within the "Biblical Hebrew E-Magazine"
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