Does 2 Samuel 23 compare an ideal ruler to grass benefitting from rain?

1 (100%)
No, it says that David's rule was like grass benefitting from rain.
0 (0%)
No, there's another translation
0 (0%)

Total Members Voted: 1

Voting closed: June 05, 2014, 08:03:04 PM

Author Topic: Does 2 Samuel 23 compare an ideal ruler to grass nurtured by rain?  (Read 1998 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline rakovsky

  • Merarches
  • ***********
  • Posts: 10,997
  • St. Mstislav I
    • The Old Testament Prophecies of the Messiah's Resurrection and Orthodox Christianity's roots in the Holy Land
  • Faith: Christian
  • Jurisdiction: Orthodox Church in America
Does 2 Samuel 23 compare an ideal ruler to grass nurtured by rain?
« on: September 10, 2011, 08:03:04 PM »
Does 2 Samuel  23 compare the Messiah to grass refreshed by rain?

The KJV of 2 Samuel  23 - and other English translations seem to copy this- says:
3. The God of Israel said, the Rock of Israel spake to me, He that ruleth over men must be just, ruling in the fear of God.

4. And he shall be as the light of the morning, when the sun riseth, even a morning without clouds; as the tender grass springing out of the earth by clear shining after rain.

5. Although my house be not so with God; yet he hath made with me an everlasting covenant, ordered in all things, and sure: for this is all my salvation, and all my desire, although he make it not to grow.

The Russian Synodal Translation of 2 Samuel 23 says:

3. Сказал Бог Израилев, говорил о мне скала Израилева: владычествующий над людьми будет праведен, владычествуя в страхе Божием.

4. И как на рассвете утра, при восходе солнца на безоблачном небе, от сияния после дождя вырастает трава из земли,

5. не так ли дом мой у Бога? Ибо завет вечный положил Он со мною, твердый и непреложный. Не так ли исходит от Него все спасение мое и все хотение мое?

This translates to:

3. God of Israel said, the Rock of Israel told about me: he that ruleth over men must be just, ruling in the fear of God.

4. And at the dawn of the morning, at sunrise on a cloudless sky, from the shining after rain the grass grows out of the ground,

5. is not my house of God like that? For an everlasting covenant He put to me, solid and immutable. Does not all my salvation and all my desire come from Him like that?

By the way, the Charles Thompson translation of the Septuagint says:
3. The God of Israel saith to me, A watchman of Israel hath spoken .a proverb. I said as a man, (d) How can you strengthen the fear of an anointed?
4. (p) With the light of the God of the morning.
(d) Let the Sun rise in the morning betimes.
(p) Is not the Lord gone forth with splendour?
(d) Yes, like the spring of grass on the earth after rain;
5. For is not my house thus with the Almighty? For he hath made with me an everlasting covenant, Kept ready for every occasion; Because this is all my safety, and all my desire, That the transgressor may not flourish.

(d) David. (p) Prophet.

So in the English KJV translation, David prophetically gives an image of an ideal ruler who is like grass springing out of the ground after rain.

This is somewhat reminiscient of Isaiah 11 and Isaiah 53, where the Messiah is compared to a plant's branch coming out of the ground, although in Isaiah 53 it is a shoot out of dry ground, while in 2 Samuel, the ground may have been dry, but has been wetted by the rain.

However, 2 Samuel 23 is even closer to Hosea 6, which says:
  • 1. Come, and let us return unto the LORD: for he hath torn, and he will heal us; he hath smitten, and he will bind us up.
    2. After two days will he revive us: in the third day he will raise us up, and we shall live in his sight.
    3. Then shall we know, if we follow on to know the LORD: his going forth is prepared as the morning; and he shall come unto us as the rain, as the latter and former rain unto the earth.

On the face of it, Hosea 6 is talking about the Israelites' resurrection and/or their national restoration. However, in the context of the KJV of 2 Samuel 23, it appears to hint towards a resurrection focused on the Messiah, since Hosea 6 compares the national resurrection to plants sprouting from rain, and 2 Samuel 23(KJV) speaks of the Messiah sprouting as from rain. This connection is made stronger in light of the mention of resurrection on the 3rd day, a timing which seems to make more sense in the context of Christ's resurrection on the 3rd day.

What do you think?
« Last Edit: September 10, 2011, 08:03:54 PM by rakovsky »
The ocean, infinite to men, and the worlds beyond it, are directed by the same ordinances of the Lord. ~ I Clement 20