Translation of 3 Reigns 2:26-27 (1 Kgs 2:26-27 LXX)

26. And to Abiathar, the priest, the king said, “get yourself to Anatoth in your countryside! For a man of death are you on this day. And I will not kill you, for you carried the ark of the covenant of the Lord before my father and because you were afflicted with trials, those that afflicted my father.”
27. And Solomon cast out Abiathar from being priest of the Lord, fulfilling the word of the Lord that he had spoken about the house of Eli in Selom.

Notes on the Text

In spite of the brevity of this text, there are a number of differences between the Greek and Hebrew versions. All of them (beyond orthography) are in v. 26.

First, the Greek emphasizes “you” after the imperative in v. 26. I find it difficult to imagine that this represents a distinct Hebrew Vorlage (cf., however the לך לך in Gen 12:1 and 22:2, neither of which has a Greek translation similar to the phrase here).

The phrase “on this day” is transposed behind the conjunction “and” in the Hebrew. Most likely there is an error in the Hebrew text. Otherwise, one would expect a Hebrew story at some point that explained how Solomon killed Abiathar. In the Hebrew version he states, “on this day I will not kill you,” after all, suggesting that he could and/or would do it some other day. This never happens in the versions of Kings.

Instead of the curious phrase “the ark of the Lord Yhwh,” the Greek reads “the ark of the covenant of the Lord (=Yhwh).” In this case the Hebrew likely again represents an errant text. It looks like the form to be read in the Hebrew was included adjacent to the term as written (i.e., the Qere-Kethib elements stand next to each other in the text). The question remains open as to whether the Greek stems from a variant Hebrew reading or was added by the translator.

Finally, the Hebrew includes the name “David” before “my father.” I regard this as adding emphasis to the figure David in the Hebrew version and would consider strongly the possibility that this presents a later addition.

Leave a comment

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

  • Welcome to my blog!

    I hope you find the material here both entertaining and informative. Or at least one of those two. Or neither. Welcome to my blog!
  • Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

  • Follow Jonathan Robker: Exegete, Critic, Cook on WordPress.com
  • Archive

  • Twitter Timeline

%d bloggers like this: