Korean Journal of Old Testament Studies 2021 KCI Impact Factor : 0.42

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pISSN : 1229-0521 / eISSN : 2799-9890

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2018, Vol.24, No.3

  • 1.

    Language, Ethics, and Power in Bible Translation

    Youngjin Min | 2018, 24(3) | pp.21~52 | number of Cited : 1
    Abstract PDF
    The Hebrew word ‘dabar’ (or ‘lashon’, ‘safa’, ‘mila’, ‘tora’, ‘maamar’) had been translated into ‘logos’ in the Greco-Roman period (cf. John 1:1). In the 19th century, the Greek word ‘logos’ was translated into “Tao(道)” in the Asian culture of Chinese characters. Such a choice of the equivalent is a representative example of Hebraism that has successfully met Asian ideas through the Greco-Roman Hellenism. This is an example of the effective transfer of meaning from one “language” to another “language.” When a translator fails to accumulate and utilize the translation experience as a public property, it is a matter of “ethics” of the translator. When a translator exposes the intellectual limitations, the problem of the translator’s ethics will be raised. The responsibility and ethics of a translator are first and foremost related to his or her ability to use the translation software that helps him or her. A translator is not a researcher who is buried in the lab all the time, but rather a person who is close to the material containing the accumulated research results in Biblical studies, and who is responsible for translating through the proficiency by using such tools and cooperating with the translation team members to complete the translation by the deadline. One of the intellectual tools, whchi has systematically organized the translation experience and knowledge for many centuries in the field of Bible translation, is a software called PARATEXT made by UBS translation technical support team. PARATEXT is a tool designed to help Bible translators. When church authorities, who are in charge of planning and promoting the translation of the Bible and publishing and distributing the Bible, try to keep the Bible under the authority of the church and create an ideology to dominate the Bible, it becomes difficult to prevent the church authorities from engaging in the translation of the Biblical text during the translation process. This raises questions about the “power” that forces translators to distort the text. For example, the translators of Isaiah 19:24, who would have attempted to translate the original Hebrew into Greek. Isaiah's radical vision that Egypt, Israel, and even Assyria will be a blessing for other nations on the earth as channels for God's blessings to all the people of this world, was unpleasant to the nationalist who thought only Israel as the chosen one. The power of religious authorities may have urged the translators to distort the text. As a result, only Israel has been chosen to be a blessing for other nations in the Isa-LXX 19:24.
  • 2.

    Past and Future of the Translation of New Korean Standard Version

    Cheol Woo Park | 2018, 24(3) | pp.53~81 | number of Cited : 2
    Abstract PDF
    This study explored the positive and negative aspects of New Korean Standard Version (NKSV, published in 1993), its particularity and limitation, and indicated the direction and methodology for its further development and renovation. I pointed out the problem of the 2nd personal pronouns of Korean language (‘Dangshin’ and ‘Neohee’), that, I consider, was not adequately dealt with in the New Korean Version (NKV, published in 2001) which is the revised edition of NKSV. I showed the reader-response of these expressions and suggested the way of solution on the basis of the direct survey at Korean Nazarene University and Anjung Nazarene church in Pyeongtaek city. The total participants of the survey were 123 persons. 107 persons (87%) favored ‘neohee’, and only 16 persons (13%), ‘dangshin’. The reason for the preference of ‘neohee’ was that ‘dangshin’ is more businesslike and unfamiliar, while ‘neohee’ brings about more intimate and affectionate feeling. In addition, I mentioned some grammatic problems which were not fully treated in the translation either NKSV or NKV, that is, (1) the matter of the precative/optative Qatal; (2) that of the vocative lamedh; (3) that of the idem per idem sentence structure. I consider these problems and matters should be dealt with in the future translation and revision of the Korean versions, NKSV in particular, to enhance their translation quality and degree of completion. With this study I brought into relief the need and direction of the enhancement and upgrade of NKV through a new revision to achieve a new synthesis out of the combination of antithesis (NKV) and thesis (NKSV) in the dialectic development.
  • 3.

    Suggestions for translating Korean based on understanding of culture in the Old Testament period

    MiYoung Im | 2018, 24(3) | pp.82~106 | number of Cited : 2
    Abstract PDF
    Hebrew of the Old Testament was not a spoken language for a long time, and the constant debate about exactly how to read and to understand it continues to this day. In addition, this language had grown up in the culture and history of ancient Israel, and also in the ancient Near East, so it must be quite unfamiliar to foreign countries. Bible translators who translated Hebrew to Korean in earlier time seemed to have relied on English and Chinese translations when they did not have the appropriate words in Korean, while not understanding the culture and context underlying the many terms and words of the Old Testament. However, English and Chinese also have different backgrounds from the ancient Israel culture, so they could not convey the full meaning of Hebrew. It is well known that the context of theological interpretation becomes better when we have understanding of the meaning in the ancient culture and customs. This article seeks to understand the meaning of the original language rather than our cultural background by selecting some words that have been used so far in the Old Testament and to approach the understanding more properly after considering the customs and ancient culture of Israel. First, we looked at the background of the Bible in which each word appears and examined the meaning and origin of the Hebrew word. Next we looked at the artifacts and cultural conventions of this word found in ancient Israel and the Near East. At the end, new words in Korean have been suggested to have better understanding of these words. The chosen words are Joseph 's ‘coat of many colors’, ‘the upper room’ of Elijah, and ‘High places’ destroyed by Hezekiah and Josiah. The 'כְּתֹנֶת פַּסִּים' translated into ‘coat of many colors’ has the meaning of clothes that cover the hands and feet, suggesting ‘a long robe with long or short sleeves’. Joseph’s ‘כְּתֹנֶת פַּסִּים’ would have made his brothers more jealous because such robes were worn by the upper class who did not work. ‘עֲלִיָּה’, which is translated as 'attic', was a space where people reside, meaning ‘second floor room’ in houses of ancient Israel. The fact that Elijah stayed in ‘עֲלִיָּה’at the house of widow at Sarbath means that she did not conceal Elijah in the space like the attic but gave up her place of residence. In addition, when Mark's large attic room of the New Testament is on the second floor, 120 people could gather together to pray in such room. ‘בָּמוֹת’, translated as ‘the High place of moutain gods’, is neither in the mountains nor in the place of the mountain gods. If there is a gateways and houses, and a pavilion where sacrifices can be held everywhere, it can soon become ‘בָּמוֹת’. Therefore, in order to make use of the original meaning of Hebrew, it was suggested to attach a footnote to ‘bamot’, which is a “traditional podium in which sacrifices are placed are performed in ancient Israel and the Near East”.
  • 4.

    Parallelism of Hebrew Poetry and Korean Translation: Limitations and Probability

    Jeung Yeoul Bang | 2018, 24(3) | pp.107~139 | number of Cited : 1
    Abstract PDF
    The goal of this paper is to identify limitations occurred in the process of translating parallelism of Hebrew poetry into Korean and to clarify the probability of overcoming those limitations. The parallelism of Hebrew Poetry can be analyzed from various angles; however, this paper focuses on studying the parallelism from syntactic, phonetic, and semantic aspects in accordance with Adele Berlin’s approach to the poetic device. Based on the analysis, I argue that the Hebrew parallelism plays a role as both ‘constructive device’ and ‘meaning-creating device,’ which demonstrates justifiability to appropriately translate features of parallelism as they are translated into Korean. Due to the linguistic disparity between Hebrew as an inflected language and Korean as an agglutinative language, one is forced to focus on the semantic aspect alone. On the basis of this analysis, I have made three practical suggestions to be taken into consideration in translation: the semantic parallelism is to be highlighted, the parallel line must be considered, and the digital version should be used for dissemination.
  • 5.

    Philological-interpretative Approach to Ecclesiastes 12:9-10 Based on Verbal Syntax and Valency

    Minsu Oh | 2018, 24(3) | pp.142~171 | number of Cited : 4
    Abstract PDF
    There are many interpretative views and theological diverse observations. In order to authentically translate the biblical text, every researcher of the text needs examinable, philological devices. Thus, in this research the noetic system and the theory of verbal valency are applied to understanding the Masoretic text of Ecclesiastes 12:9-10. The researcher explains about the functions of weqatal and the semantical meaning of the stem Piel. The former expresses iterative events. In the relation between the subject and its verb, the latter formulates a habitual characteristic. So theses evidences could indicate that Qohelet was working as a occupational and professional. Through the study, we have come to the following conclusion in regard to the translation/interpretation of Ecclesiastes 12:9-10: epilogue (9aα); Qohelet as a wise man (9aβ); his occupation (9bα-γ)public (9bα) teaching wisdoms for the people and professional (9bβ-γ) weighing up, examining, correcting; sum of his achievement (10)selecting the pleasant words (10a) + writing the truths (10b).
  • 6.

    Psalm 109: 6-19: The Prayer of Poet or the Curse of the Enemies?

    Lee Il Rye | 2018, 24(3) | pp.172~200 | number of Cited : 1
    Abstract PDF
    Regarding the interpretation of Psalm 109:6-19, this research points out that, unlike the existing studies of the text, the interpretation of the text in Korean Bibles cannot shows the diversity of the interpretation of it due to the improper translation in Korean Bibles. To demonstrate this point, the researcher compares the conclusion derived from the existing studies of the text with Korean versions. The interpretational problem of Psalm 109:6-19 is highly important for the theological understanding. This paper reveals that there is a specific situation between the first (verses 1-5) and the second section (verses 6-19), and that the main active agent of the ‘verbal violence’ in the entreaty in regard to enemies in the first section is a variety of enemies. The differences of language and motive in both sections also explain the fact that the second section is the “curse of the enemies.” This conclusion suggests the ground for diverse and proper translations of Psalm 109:5-6 in Korean Bibles. The last part of verse 5 is translated as “repaid” in the Korean Bibles, which is forcefully supposed to connect with verse 6 in the form of reason and conclusion. Therefore, this is an improper translation to be avoided. Verses 1-5 are the begging of the poet and its source is the curse of the enemies in verses 6-19. Therefore, we need to interpret verse 5 as a complete sentence: “They repay goodness with evil and reward love with hatred.” In addition, the curse of the enemies in the first sentence of verse 6 can be interpreted as “let us hire bullies to harass him. Let us hire accuser on the right side.” Furthermore, the study related to verses 6-19 is not only giving a proposal to a proper translation of verse 5-6 but also demanding a re-examination of the translation of Psalm 109:20 in the Korean Bible. In verses 6-19, which form one section, the poet laments the actions of his enemies through a quotation form, who curse him. In verse 20 (colophon), the poet also uses his own words to precisely explain verses 6-19 once again. Therefore, we require to translate verse 20 as follows: “This is the curse of my enemies against me. They are those who spoke evil of me.”
  • 7.

    Reading Amos as a category of the deuteronomistic covenant theology: 'three transgressions and four' in the Book of Amos

    Choi Jong-Won | 2018, 24(3) | pp.201~229 | number of Cited : 3
    Abstract PDF
    This paper aims to show that the literary expression of 'three or four things' in Amos 1-2 relates to the punishment of Israel in seven folds. In particular, this expression is very similar to the theological view of Deuteronomist as a contractual thought based on the North - Western Semitic region. From a critical point of a constructivism view, this idea proves that Amos 1-2 is very closely related to the texts of visions in Amos 7-8. As it has been understood until now, the expression of' three or four things' in Amos has been understood as a wisdom literary element, but these results do not give any answer in terms of a constructivism view in the book of Amos. On the other hand, judgment reports on Israel and neighboring nations can be reinterpreted through the literary expression of 'three or four sins'. Rather than being under the influence of wisdom literature, which is interpreted as the so - called number proverb, this form is more closely related to the punitive concept of treaty destruction under the influence of ancient Near East and North - Western Semitic. Amos 1-2 consists of judgment reports on all seven nations except Judah. Each nation is judged by "fire" as a punishment for sin. judgment reports are increasingly focused on the Israeli judgment text. Just as it appears to be similar to the North - Western Semitic treaty document, the judgment report on Israel is also located at the end of the judgment report of the whole country. It also shows a well-organized literary composition in the form of a seven-ply. The tradition is a concept of punishment that appears in contract destruction and is expressed in literary form of the number seven and sevenfold-schema , and it reflects the situation before the prisoner periodically.
  • 8.

    Messages and Holiness in the Book of Ezekiel

    Kim, Rae Yong | 2018, 24(3) | pp.232~265 | number of Cited : 4
    Abstract PDF
    This paper investigates both the functions of holiness in the messages of Ezekiel and the relationships between the holiness and the messages. For this I will analyze the contents, structures, and expressions of each paragraph including holiness in Ezekiel 1-24, 25-32, 33-39, and 40-48. The conception of holiness functions as a main element for the composition of Ezekiel. Ezekiel 1-24 deals with judgment of Judah and Jerusalem. Here the conception of holiness serves as a reason for Yahweh's judgment. The guidelines (decrees; laws; Sabbaths) for their holy life, Yahweh's identity, and their rebellious life are composed on the basis of the conception of holiness, so they provides the reason and legitimacy of Yahweh's judgment. Ezekiel 25-32 deals with judgment of the seven nations. Here the conception of holiness emphasizes Yahweh's power which can judge the nations around Israel. Ezekiel 33-39 deals with salvation of Judah and Jerusalem. Here the conception of holiness serves as a reason for Yahweh's salvation. The conception appears in three forms. 'My holy name' appears in the messages related to the people of Israel and it means Yahweh's identity and power (Ezekiel 36:20, 21-23a; 39:7a, 25), 'to prove my holiness' appears in the messages related to other nations and it means Yahweh's power (Ezekiel 36:23b; 38:16, 23; 39:27), and 'the Lord making Israel holy' and 'Holy One in Israel' appear in the messages related to other nations and they mean Yahweh's special personality (Ezekiel 37:28; 39:7b). Ezekiel 40-48 deal with the restoration of both the Jerusalem temple and Israel in the vision. Here the conception of holiness serves as an important subject of objects for his restoration. In particular, the description on both the wall of the temple and a special area is related to keep holiness of the temple, and the guidelines given to the people who serve and worship in the temple are related to keep holiness. Therefore, the conception of holiness serves as a main element for a composition of the massages of Ezekiel, a basis for Yahweh's actions, and the purpose of Ezekiel which a recognition formula emphasizes. This helps to understand the importance of holiness in the messages of Ezekiel.
  • 9.

    A Study of the Value and Recognition of Work in the Old Testament

    Youn Hyung | 2018, 24(3) | pp.266~292 | number of Cited : 0
    Abstract PDF
    The purpose of this article is to understand, how work is appreciated in the Old Testament. The method of study focuses on the textual interpretation of Hebrew words, and the canonical approach is appropriated for understanding the context. The concept and value of work is a cognitive one, not a technical (economic) problem. The value of work differs according to the perspective, through which work is seen. Unfortunately, work is perceived negatively in today’s world; however, upon study, the Old Testament understanding of work is significantly different. When we consider the ancient writings in general, we find a counter factor to our misapprehensions. It is an administrative principle within God’s world. This study examines three books in Hebrew Scriptures: the Pentateuch, the Prophets and the Writings. First, the Pentateuch presents direction for the workers, the work environment, and the Sabbath. In this study, we found, that workers reflect the image of God, which is closely correlated with the workplace (earth), and the Sabbath is a key to appreciating the value of work. The book of Prophets presents the concept of ‘justice,’ another critical factor in valuing work. Finally, in the Writings, fear of the Lord plays a vital role in the work ethic. In conclusion, we found a renewed vision: Fear of the Lord is to be needed, rightly for recognizing the value of work.
  • 10.

    A Theological Study on the Conceptual Change of 'Sabbath' in the History of Ancient Israel

    Lee,Keungjae | 2018, 24(3) | pp.293~326 | number of Cited : 2
    Abstract PDF
    The most important day of religious significance in the Old Testament is ‘Sabbath’. But it is impossible to define this Hebrew word as just a word ‘Sabbath’. Because the fall of the kingdom of Israel and the Jewish experience of the Babylonian captivity brought about a decisive change in understanding ‘Sabbath’. First, this word is derived from the word ‘šapattu’ in Akkadian, which means the 15th day of the lunar calendar(=the full moon). Above mentioned "the full moon" was in Mesopotamia a celebration day for the family and a day to sacrifice for divinity. This tradition influenced the understanding of the ‘Sabbath’ in the time of the kingdom of Israel. After the fall of the kingdom, the concept of ‘Sabbath;’ has changed from the meaning of ‘the full moon’ to the ‘Sabbath’. The Sabbath here was a day of rest on the seventh day and a holy day of worshiping YHWH. This fact is reflected in the documents that were recorded after the Babylonian exile. First, The three prophecies emphasize keeping the Sabbath day holy. ‘Sabbath’ in these prophecies was an eternal sign and eternal covenant between God and Israel. On the other hand, in the Priestly source ‘Sabbath’ was later associated with Creation Theology and Decalogue. But the concept of the Sabbath ‘eternal sign’ and ‘eternal covenant’ emphasized in the three prophecies is also mentioned here. The main concern of Chronicler's History was the Sabbath Order and the offerings that were held on the Sabbath in Jerusalem's temple. But Sabbath Laws, such as forbidding all work on the Sabbath, have been made after considerable time, perhaps in the Maccabean period. Most importantly, the Sabbath was one of the most important concepts representing the identity of the Jews, such as ‘circumcision’ or ‘Passover’.
  • 11.

    Date of Pottery Assemblage of Khirbet Qeiyafa and Establishment of Judean Kingdom: A Reply to L. Singer-Avitz

    Hoo-Goo Kang | 2018, 24(3) | pp.328~353 | number of Cited : 1
    Abstract PDF
    The period of so called “United Monarchy” became one of the most debated periods in biblical archaeology ever since Israel Finkelstein and his colleagues advocated “Low Chronology (LC)”. The Iron Age IIA, the archaeological period was challenged to be considered as a humble and poor and accordingly the Judean kingdom in the period was denied. An archaeological challenge to “LC” advocators occurred from Khirbet Qeiyafa which revealed a fortification system with two gates and a casemate city wall, epigraphic evidences, a pillared storage house, a government house and a rich pottery assemblage, all dated to the early Iron Age IIA by the excavators. The advocators of “LC” accordingly negated their dating and re-dated it to the late Iron Age I. This paper tries to reply to Singer-Avitz’s argument (2010, 2012, 2016) in seven points: (1) surface treatment, (2) krater, (3) base of storage jar, (4) black juglet, (5) Ashdod ware, (6) geographical analysis, (7) transitional period in archaeology. None of her arguments was not based on sound data and analysis, seemed to try to fit archaeological results from Khirbet Qeiyafa to main argument of “LC”. 4.1% of bowls are hand burnished on red slip; some krater types are continuous from the Iron Age I whilst the other are newly appeared in the Iron Age IIA; Khirbet Qeiyafa revealed flat as well as bases of storage jars; black juglets are mainly uncovered in the Iron Age IIA and later, while those found at Tel Beth Shemesh are attributed to Level 4 (1050-950 BCE), probably to last phase of the level; Ashdod ware was found together with the Philistine Bichrome in the Iron Age I sites in the Shephelah whilst Khirbet Qeiyafa revealed Ashdod ware without any Bichrome; in comparative analysis with 1182 cases from 62 sites excavated in ten different regions, parallels are found from the Late Bronze Age to the Iron Age IIB and the most paralleled period is the Iron Age IIA. All in all, Khirbet Qeiyafa in which archaeological evidences for establishment of kingdom were uncovered is reasonably dated to the early Iron Age IIA, attributed to the period of King David.
  • 12.

    Kuntillet Ajrud “Yahweh and His Asherah” and the Goddess Asherah, Who Had No Archeological Presence in Israel in the Eighth Century B.C.E.

    Jun Kim | 2018, 24(3) | pp.354~368 | number of Cited : 2
    Abstract PDF
    To date, no inscription of the goddess Asherah with her iconography has been found among the archaeological discoveries of ancient Israel. Although many scholars understand the goddess Asherah as YHWH’s consort in popular Israelite religion, no biblical, extra-biblical, or archaeological evidence has been found to clearly corroborate her status as YHWH’s consort. When inscriptions of “YHWH and His Asherah” along with iconography of two figures were found at Kuntillet Ajrud in 1975-1976, the question of whether Asherah was YHWH’s consort in Israel’s religious tradition was once again raised in earnest. This paper examines whether the expressions “YHWH and His Asherah” found in the Kuntillet Ajrud inscriptions can be regarded as archaeological evidence of the goddess Asherah, reassessing the debate on whether “His Asherah” means YHWH’s wife. For that purpose, this paper proceeds in the following order. 1) the Goddess Asherah, who had no archeological presence in Israel in the eighth century BCE. 2) A brief introduction to the inscriptions of Kuntillet Ajrud. 3) The relationship between the inscription “YHWH and His Asherah” of Pithos A and the two figures below it. 4) The issue of whether “YHWH and His Asherah”, which appear in the context of blessing, should be understood as husband and wife. 5) Hebrew grammatical discussion and possible interpretation of “His Asherah”. 6) The discussion of whether asherah was a symbolic cultic object of the goddess Asherah in the eighth century BCE from the standpoint of iconography. Through these discussions, this paper argues against the view that the sentence “YHWH and His Asherah” of Kuntillet Ajrud served as evidence for the goddess Asherah’s role as YHWH’s wife in the eighth century BCE. This paper suggests that “asherah” in Kunitllet Ajrud was a cultic object that was used in YHWH religion of Israel, regardless of the goddess of the same name.