Re: Gen. 21:9-LXX

From: Ben Crick (
Date: Thu Nov 12 1998 - 16:03:58 EST

On Tue 10 Nov 98 (12:54:49), wrote:
> The text of Gen. 21:10 reads:PAIZONTA META ISAAK TOU hUIOU AUTHS.
> My question: What was Ishmael doing to Isaac? I have my own ideas, but
> this verse has brought up some questions.

 Dear Edgar,

 Your question obviously wasn't addressed by my earlier simplistic reply re:
 the meaning of PIAZW.

 IMHO we need to look at the Galatians 4:29-30 "allegory" where "Ishmael"
 represents the Judaizers who "persecuted" Paul, and "Isaac" the "true
 believers" who supported Paul. In the O.T. "Ishmael" never ceased to
 persecute "Isaac" as we see from Psalm 83:2-8 (the Hagarites) and also
 1 Chronicles 5:10, 19 (Hagarites again). See also Josephus, /Antiquities/
 XV.5.1-5. The irony is that Saul of Tarsus himself "persecuted the Church
 of God" (1 Corinthians 15:9; Galatians 1:13) before he was converted and
 became "Paul".

 Jim West rightly drew our attention to Isaac "sporting" with Rebekah,
 but I'm sure there are no sexual overtones here. True, Potiphar's wife
 accused Joseph *PAIDA* hEBRAION, *EMPAIZEIN* hHMIN (Genesis 39:14 LXX)
 by attempting to rape her: and again EISELQE PROS ME *hO PAIS hO hEBRAIOS
 ...EMPAIXAI MOI* (verse 17). Isaac was a baby, even if babies were not
 weaned until the age of 3. Ishmael was a young teen, rather younger than
 Joseph. What Abimelech saw in Genesis 26:8 was "the way of a man with a
 maid" (Proverbs 30:19); not the way of a sibling with a rival!

 ISTM, if I may say so, that we are dealing with "blasphemy" against the
 "Covenant". The same verb in the LXX (PAIZW) is used of the juveniles who
 "mocked" Elisha as he returned from seeing Elijah ascend into heaven on
 the chariot of fire. "Go up, thou baldhead" they "mocked": PAIDARIA MIKRA
 ...*KATEPAIZON* AUTOU (2[4] Kings 2:23 LXX). These PAIDIA MIKRA would have
 been no more than Ishmael's age no doubt. What was their sin that a she-bear
 came out and killed them? Not just disrespectful name-calling...

 They had mocked the Prophet of YHWH. Elijah, an extremely hirsute man, had
 just "gone up". "You go up too, baldy!" they mocked the less-well-thatched
 Elisha. The people of Bethel owned one of the "calves" which Jeroboam had
 set up as a Baal to worship in place of YHWH. These youths were brought up
 to despise YHWH and to worship the idol placed by "Jeroboam the son of
 Nebat who taught Israel to sin" (2 Kings 3:3, etc).

 Mockimg the Prophet is considered tantamount to mocking the God who
 commissioned the prophet; compare the /fatwah/ of the late Ayatollah
 Xhoimeini (sp?) against Salman Rushdie for "blasphemy": not against God,
 but against the one whom today's descendants of Ishmael hold to be the
 Prophet of God.

 I am aware that I have left the realm of linguistics and lexicography and
 ventured (albeit warily) into the forbidden realms of hermeneutics and

 If I have offended against the FAQs and canons of b-greek, I lay my hand
 upon my mouth, and hold my peace: refraining from further posts on this
 thread. As far as I can see, no controversial matters are at stake here...



 Revd Ben Crick, BA CF
 232 Canterbury Road, Birchington, Kent, CT7 9TD (UK)

--- B-Greek home page: You are currently subscribed to b-greek as: [] To unsubscribe, forward this message to To subscribe, send a message to

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.1.4 : Sat Apr 20 2002 - 15:40:07 EDT