From: Harold R. Holmyard III (hholmyard@ont.com)
Date: Wed May 17 2000 - 10:30:40 EDT

Dear Peter,
     You write:

>In Isaiah 7:14 the LXX translator uses the imperative KALESEIS but Mtt's
citation of this passage in 1:23 he uses KALESOUSIN. What could account for
this modification and are there other examples of this in the NT?

     In the Hebrew of the MT it says, and "and she will call." The
unpointed text could be read as "you (sing.) will call," and that is the
way the LXX took it, with most of the Greek versions and some medieval
Hebrew manuscripts. But in the LXX the "you" in the context of verses 13-14
is otherwise plural. The singular "you" could point to an individual like
Ahaz, but I suppose that it could refer to an indefinite singular "you"
such as we sometimes use in the United States for "anyone": "In this world
you've got to be sharp." The Psalms use a singular "you" in this
generalized way (e.g., Ps 121:3: "he will not let your foot slip"). So does
Proverbs (e.g., Prov 14:7: "stay away from a foolish man, for you will not
find lips of knowledge").
     Perhaps Matthew understood the singular "you" in the LXX in this
indefinite way. Since the third plural is also an indefinite way to refer
to unnamed individuals, it would then be a comparable expression. The
Hebrew often uses the indefinite third plural as a substitute for the
passive. "They will call his name" is equivalent to "his name will be
called." This is just a guess off the top of my head. You might want to
consult commentaries on Matthew.

                                Harold Holmyard

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