Translation of 3 Reigns 2:46a-l (More Miscellanies from 1 Kings)

Introductory Note

The verses in this passage cover a variety of material, not all of which is known from the Hebrew version of Kings. Like in the previous case of miscellanies, this could have quite substantial implications for the literary history of the text of Kings far beyond any simple text-critical issues. Should it be desired, I can certainly offer some detailed thoughts on this issue in the future.

Translation of the Miscellanies after 3 Reigns 2:46 (= 1 Kgs 2:46)

a) And the king, Solomon, was very insightful and wise. And Judah and Israel (were) very many, like the sand that is upon the sea in multitude, eating and drinking and rejoicing.
b) And Solomon was ruler in all the kingdoms. And they were bringing presents and serving Solomon all the days of his life.
c) And Solomon began to exploit (literally, “lay open”) the natural resources of the Lebanon.
d) And he built Themai in the desert.
e) And this (was) the midday meal for Solomon: 30 Kors of fine flour and 60 Kors of ground grain flour, 10 choice calves, and 20 grazing cattle and 100 sheep besides deer and gazelles and choice roaming birds.
f) Yes, he was ruler in the whole of Transeuphratene, from Raphi to Gaza, in all the kingdoms of Transeuphratene (or “across the river”).
g) And with him was peace from all portions surrounding him. And Judah and Israel settled, trusting, each under his vine and under his fig tree, eating and drinking, from Dan and until Beersabee, all the days of Solomon.
h) And there (were) the leaders of Solomon: Azarias son of Sadok (was?) the priest and Ornias son of Nathan (was) leader of the appointees. And Edram (was) over his house. And Souba (was) scribe. And Basa son of Achithalam (was) recorder. And Abi son of Ioab (was) chief officer and Ahire son of Edrai (was) over the forced laborers. And Banaias son of Iodae (was) over the temple court and over the brickworks. And Zakour son of Nathan (was) the advisor.
i) And there were for Solomon 40,000 breeding horses in chariotry and 12,000 equestrians.
k) And he was ruler in all the kingdoms from the river and until the land of the foreigners (= Philistines) and until the borders of Egypt.
l) Solomon son of David reigned over Israel and Judah in Jerusalem.

How many Kors did Solomon have?!

Notes on the Text

What really makes this text interesting is the number of contradictions and repetitions it presents to the rest of Kings. Of particular interest in this regard is the list of officers, which both “repeats” material found in chapter 4, though substantially different, and contradicts much of the surrounding material, such as who was priest, over the forced labor, and what role Banaias played in Solomon’s governing. In this case, I think that we are dealing with a legitimately different source from the material as it appears in chapter 4, which does not seem familiar with the material preceding this passage in chapter 2. That is, it came from somewhere else. If you’re interested in more information on this, I can supply that in a future post.

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.

Translation of 3 Reigns 2:13-25 (1 Kgs 2:13-25 LXX)

13) And Adonias, son of Angith, came to Beersabee, mother of Solomon, and bowed to her. But she said, “is your coming (in) peace?” And he said, “peace.
14) “A word for me to you.” And she said to him, “speak.”
15) And he said to her, “you know that for me was the kingdom and upon me placed all Israel its face to (be) king. But the kingdom was turned and became for my brother, for from the Lord was it for him.
16) “And now, one request I request from you. You should not turn away your face.” And to him Beersabee said, “speak.”
17) And he said to her, “speak now to Solomon, the king, for he will not turn away his face from you. And he will give me Abisak the Somanite for a wife.”
18) And Beersabee said, “good. I will speak on your behalf to the king.”
19) And Beersabee went to King Solomon to speak to him about Adonias. And the king arose in meeting her, and he kissed her and sat upon his throne. And a throne for the king’s mother was set up, and she sat on his right.
20) And she spoke to him, “one small request I am requesting from you. Not should you turn your face.” And to her the king said, “request, my mother, for not will I turn you away.”
21) And she said, “give, now, Abisak the Somanite to Adonias, your brother, for a wife.”
22) And Solomon, the king, answered and said to his mother, “to what end have your requested Abisak for Adonias?” And you should request for him the kingdom! For this on is my brother, greater (= older) than me and for him were Abiathar the priest and for him was Joab son of Sarouias, the commander-in-chief, a companion.”
23) And King Solomon swore by the Lord, saying, “this shall God do to me and this he shall add, for against his life has Adonias spoken this word!
24) “And now, as the Lord lives, who prepared me and set me upon the throne of David, my father, and he made me a house, just as the Lord had spoken, for today Adonias will be put to death.”
25) And Solomon, the king, sent by the hand of Banaias son of Iodae and he killed him and Adonias died on that day.

“Benaiah” by William Etty (1829). York Art Gallery. Public Domain

Comments on the Text

This passage presents a number of differences between the Hebrew and the Septuagint. As per usual, I will be leaving aside the orthography of the names in these considerations.

One recurrent issue in this passage is the addition of indirect objects (or objects of prepositions) regarding the audience of lines of dialogue. The Greek contains no fewer than four more instances of this in these verses than in the Hebrew (1x each in vv. 14, 15, v. 17, and 20). While it is possible that in some or all of these instances that the Greek reflects a variant Vorlage, to me it seems just as likely that the addition of these indirect objects serves to distinguish who is speaking. Without these objects in the Greek text, it would be somewhat unclear who is speaking to whom. That is because, different than in Hebrew, the Greek does not differentiate between the masculine and feminine in the verb forms in the third person singular. So, while it remains possible, that the Greek text represents a Hebrew version distinct from that of the Masoretic text, I find it difficult to affirm that with any great degree of certainty in these cases. It’s certainly possible that the Greek stems from a variant version, but it is hardly necessarily so.

Another repeating issue is whose face should be turned away. In vv. 16 and 20, the Greek reads “your face” and the Hebrew reads “my face.” This seems to imply some insecurity about the idiom as it relates to making a request. What was the sign of the rejection of a request? The turning of the inquirer’s face or the face of the one being asked? There is no clear answer to this question in this text.

Additionally, there are a number of other minor and larger differences between the Hebrew and Greek versions.

Verse 13 in Greek mentions Adonias bowing to Beersabee, which is something missing from Solomon’s engaging with her in v. 19 (in the Greek version there, Solomon kisses her instead). These differences seem unlikely to have resulted from an error, suggesting that someone changed the text in one direction or the other. The Greek text of v. 14 is missing “and he said” in its opening. In this case, I would argue that the shorter reading likely is older and that the addition of “and he said” crept in as a result of dittography (n.b. the two other cases of this Hebrew term in vv. 13 and 15).

Verse 16 in Greek explicitly names Beersabee as the subject of the final clause. The reference is only implicit in the Hebrew. At first glance, one might think that this presents a clarifying addition similar to the indirect objects noted above, but in this case, the Greek also contains an indirect object as in the Hebrew (object of a preposition, in that case), making the need for further clarification extraneous. The situation remains murky, but it seems that we have a duplication in vv. 14b and 16b. That could suggest that the Hebrew text removed her name for consistency, but that is not entirely clear here.

Beyond the kissing instead of prostrating in v. 19, the verb for setting up the throne is passive in G. This hardly presents a real variant and can be resolved merely through a repointing of the same consonantal text. That is, the Hebrew Vorlage of the Greek version was probably identical to the current Hebrew version, but understood the verb as a passive whereas the Masoretes made it an active verb.

Verse 21 in Greek includes and element that is not present in the Hebrew. Most likely this reflects the Hebrew particle נא (“please, indeed”), common in requests; cf., e.g., v. 17. The most likely explanation is that it has gone missing in the Hebrew text due to an oversight between תתן and את (haplography). The Greek probably represents an older, though slightly longer text in this case.

The Greek of v. 22 contains a number of differences when contrasted with the Hebrew. First, it lacks “the Somanite” as a descriptor for Abishag. Since the Greek version of this verse presents the only case in the Bible in which the name Abishag is mentioned without “the Shumanite,” the most likely explanation is that someone added it to the Hebrew for the sake of consistency after the translation of the Septuagint. The syntax of the last phrase is much clearer in the Greek, which contains several extra elements. Each of the names is preceded by the preposition “to/for” in Hebrew, making this text difficult to understand. It is probably the result of an error. The reference to Joab also includes his office in addition to his patronymic in Greek, as well as the modifier that he was “a friend” or “friendly” to Adonias. Perhaps these elements were lost due to an oversight in the Hebrew due to the similarities with the opening of the next verse. I’m not certain about this though and it’s just an idea.

Verse 24 in Greek includes a further reference to “the Lord” regarding the construction of Solomon’s house. While this could present an attempt to make the text more precise, ultimately it makes the syntax more clunky, suggesting that it may be original and then later removed in the Hebrew.

Finally, the last verse of this passage, v. 25, in Greek essentially duplicates Adonias’s death. This occurs because it includes his name in the final phrase. With that, Benaias kills him and he dies. The verse ends with the additional notices that his death occurred “on that day.” This likely presents an adaptation to better match the context of v. 24, in which King Solomon announces that he should die on that die. Someone, either LXX or its Vorlage may well have seen a need to provide a strengthened notion that this promise had indeed been fulfilled.

Translation of 3 Reigns 1:38-40 (1 Kgs 1,38-40 LXX)

38. And Sadok the priest went down (and Nathan the prophet and Banaias son of Iodae and the Cherethi and the Phelethi) and they set Salomon on King David’s mule and let him to the Gion.
39. And Sadok the priest took the horn of oil from the tent and anointed Salomon and blew the horn, and the whole people said, “long live King Salomon!”
40. And the whole people went up behind him and they danced in dances and rejoiced great gladness, and the earth burst with their voice.

Finally a reason to link this… Handel’s “Zadok the Priest.”
Not to be confused with another masterpiece of European religious music:
The holiest song to Europeans: the Champions League Theme.

Comments on the Text

This short passage really only differs from the Hebrew text in three ways. First, in v. 39, only Sadok blows in the horn in Greek, whereas the verb is plural in Hebrew, meaning that someone blew in a horn or horns in the Hebrew text. Second, the Hebrew repeats the subject “the people” in v. 40, but the Greek does not. Finally, while the celebrants in Hebrew “pipe with pipes,” in Greek they “dance in dances.” The difference seems remarkable in English, but the difference in Hebrew is between two weak verbs: חול (“dance”) and חלל (“pipe”). Either version could be a perfectly conceivable misreading of the other. That doesn’t help to determine priority of either reading. Usage could perhaps help to determine whether one reading might be a “corrective” to the other. In that case, it seems likely the the Greek version and the presumed Hebrew Vorlage would be older. The reason: as far as I can tell, the only other case of the idiom “dancing dances” is in Judg 21:21. That text hardly places “dancing dances” in a particularly positive light (it’s about capturing girls to force them to marry…). That makes someone’s desire to change it toward the current Hebrew version more understandable and the alternative less likely.

Translation of 1 Kings 1:22-27 (MT)

22. But, dude! Still she was speaking with the king, and Nathan the prophet entered.

23. And they declared to the king, saying, “dude! Nathan the prophet.” And he entered before the king and prostrated to the king, upon his nose, to the ground.

24. And Nathan said, “my lord, o king, you, you have said, ‘Adonijahu will reign after me, and he will sit upon my throne’?!

25. “For he went down today and sacrificed steer and fattened calves and sheep for the many, and he called to all of the king’s sons and to the military officers and to Abiathar the priest. And, dude! They are eating and drinking before him, and they said, ‘long live Adonijahu, the king!’

26. “But to me (I am your servant) and to Zadok the priest and to Benaiahu ben Jehoiada and to Solomon, your servant, he did not call.

27. “If [this is] from my lord, the king, [then] let this thing be done. But you have not let your servants know who should sit upon the throne of my lord, the king, after him.”

Commentary on the Text

From a narrative perspective, v. 22 ends Bathsheba’s speech to the king without mentioning that she is done talking. In fact, the verse’s opening suggests that the prophet interrupts her speech, fulfilling precisely that which he proposed (v. 14). The mention of Nathan’s office places him on a distinct footing when contrasted with Bathsheba, whose identity the text does not further elucidate in v. 15, as is done here with Nathan.

The distinction between these two characters becomes yet more marked in v. 23. Three matters seem to elevate Nathan above Bathsheba in this verse. First, Nathan is announced by some unnamed group of people, presumably a court or something. Nothing similar is reported for Bathsheba. Second, his title is again reiterated in the announcement of his arrival, again in contradistinction to Bathsheba. Third, there is strong emphasis placed on his obeisance to the king. It reiterates that he not only prostrated, as Bathsheba had while kneeling, but even put his nose to the ground. The prophet appears to be laying it on thick, and this verse certainly lends him a more political air than that afforded the (hopefully) more personally relevant Bathsheba.

However, vis-à-vis the king, Nathan takes a more forward approach than Bathsheba had. Whereas the king inquires what Bathsheba wants (v. 16), Nathan simply interjects his issue. I presume that this implies social bias against Bathsheba in the text: the woman should only speak when addressed and it merits no comment when her speech is interrupted first by the court and then by the announced guest. David has thus far not reacted to her concern, whether legitimate or not. Perhaps the text is making a statement about Nathan’s power-relation to the king as well. Nathan more or less exclaims what the king has previously said. It could be understood as a question, but the Hebrew by no means makes it explicit. For this reason, I have chosen to translate it here as a surprised interjection. He asks not what the king has said; he states that the king said such while simultaneously expressing his surprise and dissatisfaction. It’s an effective rhetorical strategy for the subsequent speech: the prophet lists some facts that led him to the conclusion he states in his speech’s opening. At the same time, Nathan’s manner of addressing the king here could be understood as reinforcing the narrator’s intimation from v. 4 that the king has become and is impotent.

Verse 25 presents Nathan’s nuanced version of the same information Bathsheba recounted in v. 19. The language is quite similar, but the distinctions are perhaps noteworthy in that they make the scenario appear somewhat more dangerous for David than Bathsheba. Nathan’s versions moves the military to the second position in the list of persons affiliated with Adonijahu and expands their number from merely “Joab” to “the officers.” Only then does he add “the priest Abiathar.” Finally, he notes that they are banqueting with Adonijahu and have proclaimed him king. While Bathsheba suggests that Adonijahu is already starting to rule without the king’s knowledge (v. 18), she then notes that this will only have real consequences once the king has died (v. 21). Nathan intimates that these people already regard Adonijahu as king. That puts, certainly implicitly at least, the current occupant of the throne in precarious circumstances.

Again in v. 26 Nathan provides details more in line with his station than those emphasized by Bathsheba in vv. 19 and 21. He mentions, while reiterating his loyalty to the king, that he and Zadok the priest and one particular officer (presumably loyal and certainly without Joab’s baggage) were not invited. And this, in addition to Solomon. Bathsheba, understandably and in line with her personal relationship to the king, only noted the lack of an invitation for her son.

Nathan’s speech concludes with a few excellent rhetorical features. His first phrase in this verse shows him now, for this first time in this passage, deferent to the king. That makes his position perhaps more appealing to the sitting monarch. And rather than conclude that the king must demonstrate his plan for succession to “all Israel,” as Bathsheba suggests (v. 20), Nathan states that the king must only inform his “servants” who will succeed him. Allowing for an appropriate amount of suspicion, what the conclusion of this speech really demands is that the king tell Nathan and Solomon, the two people who are described as the king’s servants in this speech, who should reign after him and sit on his throne. This anticipates the answer they hope the king will provide, perhaps again implying the king’s impotence. Again, it should be noted here that the narrator has nowhere suggested this is the divine will that the prophet is espousing. Yet, tellingly, the king does almost exactly what the prophet demands, showing that Nathan’s plan worked. And the king suspects nothing.

Numbers 3

1) And these were the generations of Aaron and Moses on the day that YHWH spoke to Moses on the mountain of Sinai.
2) And these were the names of the sons of Aaron: The firstborn was Nadab, then Abihu, Eleazar, and Ithamar.
3) These were the names of the sons of Aaron, the anointed priests who filled their hand in the priestly service.
4) But Nadab and Abihu died in front of YHWH when they brought foreign fire before YHWH in the desert of Sinai and they did not have any sons. So Eleazar and Ithamar served as priests before Aaron their father.
5) And YHWH spoke to Moses, saying:
6) “Bring the tribe of Levi and place him in front of Aaron the priest so that they serve him.
7) And they will guard his stewardship and the stewardship of the whole community before the tent of meeting to undertake the undertaking of the Mishkan.
8) And they will guard all of the equipment of the tent of meeting and the stewardship of the sons of Israel to undertake the undertaking of the Mishkan.
9) So you will give the Levites to Aaron and to his sons. They will be given as gifts to him from among the sons of Israel.
10) And Aaron and his sons you will set and they will guard their office of priesthood and a foreigner who approaches will die.”
11) And YHWH spoke to Moses, saying:
12) “And I, behold, I have taken the Levites from the midst of the sons of Israel instead of the firstborn, the first birth of the womb from the sons of Israel and the Levites shall belong to me.
13) Yes, for me is every firstborn. In the day that I struck all of the firstborn in the land of Egypt I sanctified for myself ever firstborn in Israel, from the human even unto the beast. They will belong to me! I am YHWH!”
14) And YHWH spoke to Moses in the desert of Sinai, saying:
15) “Gather the sons of Levi according to the house of their father, according to their tribes. Every male from one month of age and older you shall gather.”
16) And Moses gathered them before YHWH just as YHWH had commanded him.
17) And these were the sons of Levi in their names: Gershon and Qehat and Merari.
18) And these were the names of the sons of Gershon, according to their tribes: Libni and Shimi.
19) And the sons of Qehat according to their tribes were Amram and Yizhar, Chebron, and Uziel.
20) And the sons of Merari according to their tribes were Machli and Mushi. These are they, the tribes of the Levites according to the house of their fathers.
21) Belonging to Gershon was the tribe of the Libnites and the tribe of the Shimites. These are they, the tribes of the Gershonites.
22) Their drafting in number – of all males from one month old and older – their drafting was 7,500.
23) And the tribes of the Gershonites camped following the Mishkan to the west.
24) And the prince of the house of the father of the Gershonites was Elyasaph ben Lael.
25) And the service of the sons of Gershon in the tent of meeting was the Mishkan and the tent, the fabrics, and the curtain of the door of the tent of meeting,
26) And the curtain of the courtyard and the fabric of the door of the courtyard that were upon the Mishkan and upon the surroundings of the altar and the tent seams and the whole of its work.
27) Belonging to Qehat was the tribe of the Amramites and the tribe of the Yizharites and the tribe of Chebronites and the tribe of the Ozielites. These are they, the tribes of the Qehatites.
28) In number, every male from one month and over: 8,600 stewards of the service of the Holy.
29) The tribes of the sons of Qehat camped on the south side of the Mishkan.
30) And the prince of the house of the father of the tribes of the Qehatites was Elizaphar ben Uziel.
31) Their stewardship was the ark and the table and the menorah and the altar and all of the equipment of the holy that served in them and the curtain and its whole service.
32) And the prince of princes of the Levites was Eleazar ben Aaron, the priest; the draft of the stewards of the stewardship of the holy.
33) Belonging to Merari was the tribe of the Machalites and the tribe of the Mushites. These are they, the tribes of the Merarites.
34) And their draft in number – every male from one month old and older – was 6,200.
35) And the prince of the house of the father of the tribes of Merari was Zuriel ben Abichayil. They camped on the northern side of the Mishkan.
36) And the draft of the stewardship of the sons of Merari was the boards of the Mishkan and the braces and the pillars and the tub and all the equipment and its whole service.
37) And the pillars surrounding the courtyard and their tubs and their tent posts and their tent seams.
38) And they camped before the Mishkan on the east before the tent of meeting from the rising of the sun. Moses and Aaron and his sons guarded the stewardship of the holy place in order to guard the sons of Israel And the approaching foreigner would die.
39) All of those drafted of the Levites whom Moses [and Aaron] drafted before YHWH according to their tribes – every male from the age of one month and older – were 22,000.
40) And YHWH spoke to Moses: “draft every firstborn male from the sons of Israel from the age of one month and over and make a counting of their names.
41) And you shall take the Levites for me (I am YHWH!) instead of every firstborn among the sons of Israel and the livestock of the Levites instead of every firstborn among the livestock of the sons of Israel.”
42) So Moses drafted every firstborn among the sons of Israel just as YHWH had commanded him.
43) And it was so: every firstborn male, in the number of the names from one-month olds and older according to their drafting: 22,273.
44) And YHWH spoke to Moses, saying:
45) “Take the Levites instead of every firstborn among the sons of Israel and the livestock of the Levites instead of their livestock. The Levites will belong to me. I am YHWH!
46) And with those who are the ransom of the 273, the excess upon the Levites from the number of the sons of Israel,
47) You shall take five five shekels for their skulls; according to the shekel of the holy you will take. The shekel is twenty gerah.
48) Then you will take the silver to Aaron and to his sons as the ransom of the excesses among them.”
49) So Moses took the silver of the ransom from the excesses of the ransoms of the Levites.
50) From among the firstborn of the sons of Israel he took the silver: 1,365 shekels according to the shekel of the holy.
51) And Moses gave the silver of the ransoms to Aaron and to his sons before YHWH just as YHWH had commanded Moses.

Text Critical Notes:
V. 3: “Filled” is singular in the Hebrew, but must be emended to read in the plural as in LXX and the Peshitta.
V. 4: “Before YHWH” is missing in one Hebrew manuscript, Sam, and the Vulgate.
V. 9: LXX and Sam read “to me” instead of “to him”. Sam. and the Peshitta read “from the midst of the sons of Israel” instead of “from with the sons of Israel.”
V. 10: after “set”, LXX adds “over the tent of meeting”.
V. 16: LXX adds “and Aaron” after Moses.
V. 16–17: The verb opening v. 17 in MT is presumably a corruption of the divine name YHWH. The translation here reflects Samaritanus.
V. 39: “and Aaron” should be deleted, as in some manuscripts, Sam, and the Peshitta. In MT the name is marked by supralinear points, suggesting that the Masoretes may have been suspicious of this name here.

Numbers 2

1) And YHWH spoke to Moses and to Aaron, saying,
2) “Among the sons of Israel everyone shall camp according to his group by the banner of the house of his fathers. They will camp surrounding the tent of meeting.
3) Those camping in east will be under the insignia of Judah according to his armies and the prince of the sons of Judah will be Nachshon ben Aminadab.
4) His army and their posts are 74,600.
5) And those camping with him will be the tribe of Issachar. The prince of the sons of Issachar is Nethanel ben Zoar.
6) And his army and his posts are 54,400.
7) The tribe of Zebulon: The prince of the sons of Zebulon is Eliab ben Chelon.
8) And his army and his posts are 57,400.
9) All of the posts of the camp of Judah are 186,400, according to their armies. They will be the first to break camp.
10) The insignia of the camp of Reuben will be in the south according to his armies. And the prince of the sons of Reuben is Elizor ben Shedaiur.
11) And his army and his posts are 46,500.
12) And those camping with him will be the tribe of Simeon. And the prince of the sons of Simeon is Shelumiel ben Zuri-Shaddai.
13) And his army and his posts are 59,600.
14) And the tribe of Gad. And the prince of the sons of Gad is Elisaph ben Ruel.
15) And his army and his posts are 45,650.
16) All of the posts of the camp and Reuben are 151,450 according to their armies. They will be the second to break camp.
17) The camp of the Levites in the middle of the camps will disassemble the tent of meeting, just as they camp, so shall they break camp, each with his hand upon their insignia.
18) The insignia of the camp of Ephraim according to their armies will be in the west. And the prince of the sons of Ephraim is Elishama ben Ammidhud.
19) And his army and their positions are 40,500.
20) And with him will be the tribe of Manasseh. And the prince of the sons of Manasseh is Gamliel ben Pedahzur.
21) And his army and their positions are 32,200.
22) And the tribe of Benjamin. And the prince of the sons of Benjamin is Abidan ben Gidoni.
23) And his army and their positions are 35,400.
24) All of the posts of the camp of Ephraim are 108,100 according to their armies. They were the third to break camp.
25) The insignia of the camp of Dan will be to the north according to their armies. And the prince of the sons of Dan is Achiezer ben Ammishaddai.
26) And his army and their posts are 62,700.
27) And those camping with him are the tribe of Asher. And the prince of the sons of Asher is Pagiel ben Ochran.
28) And his army and their posts are 41,500.
29) And the tribe of Naphtali. And the prince of the sons of Naphtali is Achira ben Enan.
30) And his army and their posts are 53,400.
31) All of the posts of the camp of Dan are 157,600. To the west they broke camp according to their insignia.”
32) These are those who were drafted of the sons of Israel according to the house of their fathers. All of those who were drafted of the camps according to their armies are 603,550.
33) But the Levites were not drafted in the midst of the sons of Israel, just as YHWH commanded Moses.
34) And the sons of Israel did just as YHWH commanded Moses. Thus they camped according to their posts and thus they broke camp each according to his tribe, according to the house of his fathers.

Text Critical Notes:
V. 2: “his group” is plural in Samaritanus.
V. 4: Samaritanus reads “its posts”. Sam. and L. agree in verses 6, 8, 11, 13, etc.
V. 7: Some Masoretic manuscripts, Sam. and the Peshitta add the copula at the opening of the verse, also in verses 14, 22, and 29.
V. 20: The opening may originally have read “And camping with him…” as in the other cases. Cf. LXX.
V. 31: BHS suggests reading “positions” as “armies,” as in e.g., v. 24. As no textual evidence for this change has been cited, any such corruption must have occurred very early in the transmission of the text in order to have become ubiquitous in the traditions.

Coming soon to an Internet near you…

In keeping with the research project in Essen that I am working on, I have decided that I will translate the book of Numbers here on my blog. My translation will be based on the Hebrew text with some text-critical notes about how the text probably read before corruptions and other changes crept in. I hope that anyone reading this will also feel free to comment on or suggest changes that my be necessary. However, I have not yet decided if I am going to post the chapters in order or not. We’ll see how I ultimately decide to put this translation into practice. Hopefully this will turn into a fruitful project. More soon!

This Blog has been censored.


US Travel Plans – Summer 2009

22 July – Arrival in Tulsa, OK, Travel to Cherryvale, KS

22 July – 25 July: Cherryvale, KS

26 July – 2 August: Baton Rouge, LA and surrounding region

2 August – 5 August: San Antonio, TX

5 August – 7 August: Austin, TX

7 August – 9 August: Cherryvale, KS

9 August – 11 August: Des Moines, IA

11 August – 14 August: Chicago, IL

14 August – 17/18 August: Kansas City, MO

18 August – 13 September: Cherryvale, KS and surrounding region

People are also always welcome to visit us at my parents’ house (that’s the one in Cherryvale, KS where we’re spending the majority of our time). It’s a great place to take a break if you need one.

So, other than Cherryvale, we are looking for cheap or free places to stay. If you know any, please let me know. Also, if you just want to hook up with us, we would love to see you. Let me know in advance when and where you are around so that we can make it happen. While we are in LA, we are planning on maybe going to Bilouxi for a night, if anyone is interested. Also, we’d like to hit NO and also take in a swamp tour, for both of which we’d like to have company, if you’d like to join us.

Got other ideas or plans you’d like to undertake with us? Let me know and we’re there.

We’re really looking forward to the trip and hope to see as many of you as possible.

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