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John Reece
02-23-2014, 10:41 AM
This is a non-debate thread.

Please do not post any cabala in this thread.

Irenic discussion is welcome in this thread.

As background for this thread, consider Psalm 37 (NRSV):



Psa. 37:0 **Of David.
1 Do not fret because of the wicked;
do not be envious of wrongdoers,
2 for they will soon fade like the grass,
and wither like the green herb.
*
Psa. 37:3 ** Trust in the LORD, and do good;
so you will live in the land, and enjoy security.
4 Take delight in the LORD,
and he will give you the desires of your heart.
*
Psa. 37:5 ** Commit your way to the LORD;
trust in him, and he will act.
6 He will make your vindication shine like the light,
and the justice of your cause like the noonday.
*
Psa. 37:7 ** Be still before the LORD, and wait patiently for him;
do not fret over those who prosper in their way,
over those who carry out evil devices.
*
Psa. 37:8 ** Refrain from anger, and forsake wrath.
Do not fret—it leads only to evil.
9 For the wicked shall be cut off,
but those who wait for the LORD shall inherit the land.
*
Psa. 37:10 ** Yet a little while, and the wicked will be no more;
though you look diligently for their place, they will not be there.
11 But the meek shall inherit the land,
and delight themselves in abundant prosperity.
*
Psa. 37:12 ** The wicked plot against the righteous,
and gnash their teeth at them;
13 but the LORD laughs at the wicked,
for he sees that their day is coming.
*
Psa. 37:14 ** The wicked draw the sword and bend their bows
to bring down the poor and needy,
to kill those who walk uprightly;
15 their sword shall enter their own heart,
and their bows shall be broken.
*
Psa. 37:16 ** Better is a little that the righteous person has
than the abundance of many wicked.
17 For the arms of the wicked shall be broken,
but the LORD upholds the righteous.
*
Psa. 37:18 ** The LORD knows the days of the blameless,
and their heritage will abide forever;
19 they are not put to shame in evil times,
in the days of famine they have abundance.
*
Psa. 37:20 ** But the wicked perish,
and the enemies of the LORD are like the glory of the pastures;
they vanish—like smoke they vanish away.
*
Psa. 37:21 ** The wicked borrow, and do not pay back,
but the righteous are generous and keep giving;
22 for those blessed by the LORD shall inherit the land,
but those cursed by him shall be cut off.
*
Psa. 37:23 ** Our steps are made firm by the LORD,
when he delights in our way;
24 though we stumble, we shall not fall headlong,
for the LORD holds us by the hand.
*
Psa. 37:25 ** I have been young, and now am old,
yet I have not seen the righteous forsaken
or their children begging bread.
26 They are ever giving liberally and lending,
and their children become a blessing.
*
Psa. 37:27 ** Depart from evil, and do good;
so you shall abide forever.
28 For the LORD loves justice;
he will not forsake his faithful ones.

*
The righteous shall be kept safe forever,
but the children of the wicked shall be cut off.
29 The righteous shall inherit the land,
and live in it forever.
*
Psa. 37:30 ** The mouths of the righteous utter wisdom,
and their tongues speak justice.
31 The law of their God is in their hearts;
their steps do not slip.
*
Psa. 37:32 ** The wicked watch for the righteous,
and seek to kill them.
33 The LORD will not abandon them to their power,
or let them be condemned when they are brought to trial.
*
Psa. 37:34 ** Wait for the LORD, and keep to his way,
and he will exalt you to inherit the land;
you will look on the destruction of the wicked.
*
Psa. 37:35 ** I have seen the wicked oppressing,
and towering like a cedar of Lebanon.
36 Again I passed by, and they were no more;
though I sought them, they could not be found.
*
Psa. 37:37 ** Mark the blameless, and behold the upright,
for there is posterity for the peaceable.
38 But transgressors shall be altogether destroyed;
the posterity of the wicked shall be cut off.
*
Psa. 37:39 ** The salvation of the righteous is from the LORD;
he is their refuge in the time of trouble.
40 The LORD helps them and rescues them;
he rescues them from the wicked, and saves them,
because they take refuge in him.

Cow Poke
02-23-2014, 02:36 PM
I just wanted to say I appreciate your diligence, John. Even though I don't interact much, I do enjoy reading your posts.

John Reece
02-23-2014, 04:00 PM
I just wanted to say I appreciate your diligence, John. Even though I don't interact much, I do enjoy reading your posts.

I was thinking about you, Cow Poke (along with others), when I put up the OP (http://www.theologyweb.com/campus/showthread.php?947-Blessed-Are-the-Meek) ― 'looking foreword to your participation in this thread, which is why I edited the OP to add "irenic discussion is welcome in this thread".

"The Meek" is the first topic I began with when I developed my own website before TWeb was originated more than a decade ago.

I have forgotten the name of my old, now defunct, website; however, Dee Dee discovered it on the internet and liked what she read there enough to invite me to come to TWeb within a month after she and a gang of friends started the old TWeb site.

TWeb was started in Jan 2003, and Dee Dee found my website in Feb 2003.

I eventually took my website down to devote myself to posting in the Biblical Languages forum here.

I did not have the technological expertise to do multiple pages or to run an interactive site ― it was all a massive one page conglomeration that had no mechanism for anyone else to participate, so I was happy to drop it in favor of a site where I could leave all the techno-savvy work to others who know how to do such.

Truthseeker
02-23-2014, 05:04 PM
What are some of the questions that you hope this thread will explore?

John Reece
02-23-2014, 06:08 PM
What are some of the questions that you hope this thread will explore?

Who are the meek?

How will the meek inherit the earth?

Cow Poke
02-23-2014, 08:37 PM
John.... I had a friend who was a really big powerful man - he was a Lt. Commander in the Navy, and we in the process of going into the Navy Chaplaincy. He had a big booming voice, but was an absolute perfect gentleman. He liked to describe "meek" as "power under control. He emphasized it was not "the weak" or the "timid", but, as I said, "power under control".

How does that strike you? Is that allowed in the language?

Christianbookworm
02-23-2014, 08:41 PM
I agree. It would be like if someone didn't fight back not because they were a wimp, but the provocateur wasn't worth it.

Cow Poke
02-23-2014, 08:56 PM
The illustration I've heard - odd though it might be - comes from a demonstration on both the strength and agility of a Clydesdale horse. I think there's a video on youtube somewhere of this huge Clydesdale putting it's hoof down on an egg, rolling the egg, but not breaking it. "power under control". I've often wondered if that can actually be supported by the language.

Zymologist
02-23-2014, 10:00 PM
Wasn't Moses described as the meekest man alive in his day?

John Reece
02-23-2014, 10:01 PM
John.... I had a friend who was a really big powerful man - he was a Lt. Commander in the Navy, and we in the process of going into the Navy Chaplaincy. He had a big booming voice, but was an absolute perfect gentleman. He liked to describe "meek" as "power under control. He emphasized it was not "the weak" or the "timid", but, as I said, "power under control".

How does that strike you? Is that allowed in the language?

Excellent way of expressing what is quite definitely allowed in the language.


The illustration I've heard - odd though it might be - comes from a demonstration on both the strength and agility of a Clydesdale horse. I think there's a video on youtube somewhere of this huge Clydesdale putting it's hoof down on an egg, rolling the egg, but not breaking it. "power under control". I've often wondered if that can actually be supported by the language.

Yes, it can be supported not only in the language, but also in the context of the biblical narratives.

I will have more to say after a much needed night's rest ― if a real scholar does not beat me to it twixt now and then.

Cow Poke
02-23-2014, 10:03 PM
I will have more to say after a much needed night's rest.

Thanks. Sleep well, my friend.

John Reece
02-23-2014, 11:44 PM
Wasn't Moses described as the meekest man alive in his day?

Yes; that's a key factor in my exegesis.

Paprika
02-24-2014, 02:53 AM
Yes; that's a key factor in my exegesis.
Given how extensively James quotes from the Sermon on the Mount, I think this should also be relevant:

has not God chosen those who are poor in the world to be rich in faith and heirs of the kingdom, which he has promised to those who love him?

John Reece
02-24-2014, 11:52 AM
Given how extensively James quotes from the Sermon on the Mount, I think this should also be relevant:

Interesting point. Thanks.

John Reece
02-24-2014, 04:33 PM
The Greek word rendered "meek" in the relevant texts (LXX and NT) in this thread is πραϋς (praus), which in the LXX is used for עָנָו (ʿānāw) in Numbers 12:3 and Psalm 37:11.

Here is the entry for עָנָו (ʿānāw) in William A. Holladay's A Concise Hebrew and Aramaic Lexicon of The Old Testament (E. J. Brill and Eerdmans, 1971):


עָנָו (ʿānāw): ... (one who understands himself to be) low, humble, gentle (before God): Numbers 12:3, often in Psalms.

More later...

John Reece
02-24-2014, 08:36 PM
The Greek word rendered "meek" in the relevant texts (LXX and NT) in this thread is πραϋς (praus), which in the LXX is used for עָנָו (ʿānāw) in Numbers 12:3 and Psalm 37:11.

Here is the entry for עָנָו (ʿānāw) in William A. Holladay's A Concise Hebrew and Aramaic Lexicon of The Old Testament (E. J. Brill and Eerdmans, 1971):


עָנָו (ʿānāw): ... (one who understands himself to be) low, humble, gentle (before God): Numbers 12:3, often in Psalms.

The Bible presents two persons as models of what it means to be "meek" in the biblical sense: one in the OT and one in the NT.


Numbers 12:3 (ESV): Now the man Moses was very meek [Hebrew עָנָו (ʿānāw); Greek πραϋς (praus)], more than all people who were on the face of the earth.

Matthew 11:29 (KJV): Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek [πραϋς (praus)] and lowly in heart and ye shall find rest unto your souls.

When I consider the lives of Moses and Jesus, it seems to me that what they had in common that is expressed in the word πραϋς (praus) is that they were both sold out to God to do his will.

Geert van den Bos
02-25-2014, 08:12 PM
The Greek word rendered "meek" in the relevant texts (LXX and NT) in this thread is πραϋς (praus), which in the LXX is used for עָנָו (ʿānāw) in Numbers 12:3 and Psalm 37:11.

Here is the entry for עָנָו (ʿānāw) in William A. Holladay's A Concise Hebrew and Aramaic Lexicon of The Old Testament (E. J. Brill and Eerdmans, 1971):


עָנָו (ʿānāw): ... (one who understands himself to be) low, humble, gentle (before God): Numbers 12:3, often in Psalms.

The Bible presents two persons as models of what it means to be "meek" in the biblical sense: one in the OT and one in the NT.


Numbers 12:3 (ESV): Now the man Moses was very meek [Hebrew עָנָו (ʿānāw); Greek πραϋς (praus)], more than all people who were on the face of the earth.

Matthew 11:29 (KJV): Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek [πραϋς (praus)] and lowly in heart and ye shall find rest unto your souls.

When I consider the lives of Moses and Jesus, it seems to me that what they had in common that is expressed in the word πραϋς (praus) is that they were both sold out to God to do his will.


The meekness of Moses is said to find expression in "vayikra" (the first word of the book Leviticus), which in Torah-scrolls is written with a dimished letter "alef", intimating that Moses wanted to write "vayikkar", by thus saying that it all just came to him in a wet dream (nocturnal pollution).

http://www.chabad.org/library/bible_cdo/aid/9902#showrashi=true

The expression וַיִּקָּר has the meaning of a coincidental happening, and also alludes to impurity. [See Deut. 23:11, regarding the expression מִקְרֵה לַיְלָה.]

Where it says that Moses was very meek (more so than any person on the face of the earth) it follows Miriam's and Aaron's accusation that he had married (had slept with) a Cushite woman.

Might this have a parallel in Luke 7:39?

“If this man were a prophet, he would have known who and what sort of woman this is who is touching him, for she is a sinner.”

KingsGambit
02-25-2014, 10:58 PM
Moderator's notice:

John Reece requested no cabala-type posting in this thread. Please refrain from any further posts of this nature, and remember that this is a non-debate thread.

robrecht
03-01-2014, 03:11 PM
The illustration I've heard - odd though it might be - comes from a demonstration on both the strength and agility of a Clydesdale horse. I think there's a video on youtube somewhere of this huge Clydesdale putting it's hoof down on an egg, rolling the egg, but not breaking it. "power under control". I've often wondered if that can actually be supported by the language.Hi, Porker, I mean Poker. A while back I was going to post something in response to your idea here, but I wanted to wait and see where John was going. And I am glad I waited as John's approach to the meekness of Moses is so very profound and the thread has a beauty and power all its own.

But, nonetheless, your Clydesdale example reminds me of the fact that the Greek word used here for meek, both as a noun and as a verb, is frequently used to speak of the taming of an animal. Xenophon uses it specifically of military horses that have been rigorously trained as a group for hunting and battle. Thus animals, when trained well, may seem docile enough at times, but they are by no means weak and retiring. It is still an animal with a raw wild power somewhere below the surface that is being directed for a specific purpose, even a violent purpose.

John Reece
03-01-2014, 04:13 PM
Hi, Porker, I mean Poker. A while back I was going to post something in response to your idea here, but I wanted to wait and see where John was going. And I am glad I waited as John's approach to the meekness of Moses is so very profound and the thread has a beauty and power all its own.

But, nonetheless, your Clydesdale example reminds me of the fact that the Greek word used here for meek, both as a noun and as a verb, is frequently used to speak of the taming of an animal. Xenophon uses it specifically of military horses that have been rigorously trained as a group for hunting and battle. Thus animals, when trained well, may seem docile enough at times, but they are by no means weak and retiring. It is still an animal with a raw wild power somewhere below the surface that is being directed for a specific purpose, even a violent purpose.

I'm glad I waited for that!