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confidence to say that I have "wholly omitted the relative pronoun Nesher?" Here, I repeat, I have another opportunity-(but indeed the opportunities are so numerous, that I cannot open a single page where they do not occur) of referring this gentleman to his peculiarities of idiom and niceties of construction;" for he either does not know, or is not willing to acknowledge, which is more blameable, that the word Nesher, according to "the peculiarities of idiom and niceties of construction," embraces the sense of twenty-two words, conjunctions and pronoun relatives, in the English language. He further says, "Mr. Bellamy has made a similar mistake at ver. 12." The reader may easily see to whom the word mistake is applicable.
Ver 20. "The water shall bring forth abundantly the soul of life." The erudite critic says, "Had Mr. Bellamy endeavoured to translate the verse into nonsense, he could not have succeeded better than he has done. The words TV nephesh chayah, which he renders the soul of life,' evidently mean the living creature, the creature, or the moving creature that hath life,' as our translation gives it." But I beg that he will not be so hasty; it is easy to use the word "nonsense," but we shall find that I have translated literally according to the Hebrew, and that the received translation is incorrect, as well as this writer.
The word chayah, rendered "living," is not a participle active, but a substantive. See Gen. xviii. 14. " to the time of life" but to say, "to the time of living," agreeably to this gentleman's reasoning, would indeed be "nonsense." 2 Kings iv. 16, 17.; the words therefore under consideration cannot be translated "living creature." That any objection could possibly be made to V nephesh, as signifying signifying "soul," is equally astonishing. But the reader will see through all this; for this liberal and disinterested reviewer and biblical editor is, on this as on other occasions, merely laboring in his vocation, and of course must defend the common translation, even where it is defective in mood, tense, person, &c. all must be made to appear right, and as perfect as the Hebrew like the council of Trent, who declared the Vulgate to be as pure as the Hebrew, and thus sealed it with their infallibility, although it has so many marks of human fallibility. See the learned Bates, Integ. Heb. Text.
The words nephesh chayah, cannot possibly have other rendering than " soul of life," and not the "moving creature that hath life." Had I given such a translation of these two words as this, I should have said, Surely this gentleman is justified in saying, "Had Mr. B. endeavoured to translate the verse into nonsense, he could not have succeeded better than he has done." Did this writer never hear of a certain description of men called
infidels, who have often brought forward this verse, to show, as they term it, the disordered state of the Bible? who have often told us, that "this could not be written by any one who knew how to write?" and the reason they assign is, that "the sacred writer could not say,' the moving creature that hath life,' because it is evident that all creatures capable of moving must necessarily have life."
The words nephesh chayah, have by the English translators been rendered "moving creature," but if so, then the words," that hath life," are an interpolation. But that the reader may be certain that these words mean "soul of life," I refer him to the following passages where the word nephesh, is uniformly rendered "soul," in construction with chayah, "life." Gen. xl. 15, 18, 22, 25, 26, 27-Exod. i. 5-Josh. x. 29-1 Sam. xxv. 29-Ezek. xxii. 25. &c. And this is the translation which the most approved lexicographers have given to these two words.
I have translated, ver. 31. "Thus God provided for all that he had made." This translation has been approved by some of the first Hebrew scholars in this country. But with this gentleman, all must be condemned; for he says, "Here is a needless departure from the original, which simply says, "God saw all that he had made." The first thing that led me to suppose that an improper word had been chosen, was the expression "God saw all that he had made:" this, I concluded, could not be doubted; he who made all things, must necessarily see all things. And then turning to the statement of the sacred writer in the two preceding verses, I found that, "God having given every herb bearing seed which is upon the face of all the earth, and every tree in the which is the fruit of a tree yielding seed-to every beast of the earth, and to every fowl of the air, and to every thing that creepeth upon the earth, for food" that God having thus provided for all that he had made, I found that the verb N, rendered in the common version, and he (God) saw," required to be expressed in conformity with the preceding passages. I have therefore translated it as the same word is translated in Deut. xxxiii. 21. "And he provided the third part for himself." Here is the selfsame word, both consonants and vowels, necessarily translated by the word provided; it is a remote sense of the word to see, for a person must see before he provides: and it is in perfect conformity with the provision which God had made for man and for every living creature. The reader will be disgusted with the false statement of this writer, when he reads his unjustifiable declaration concerning my translation of this passage, viz. "Here is a needless departure from the original." It is, I grant, a departure from the common version, but not a departure from the
original. If he mean the common version, the common version is not the original-If he mean the original, he has not acquainted himself with the peculiarities of idiom and the niceties of construction," or he would not have said, that the translation of " was "a departure from the original."
I have said that this gentleman, because I introduce the objections of infidels with a design of silencing such objections, almost puts me down as an infidel, saying, "Language like this naturally leads to a suspicion, that the writer is secretly endeavouring to serve the cause of infidelity, and to undermine as much as possible the credit of the Bible." He very consistently proceeds to say, "As far as outward professions go, he appears to be a believer in its divine original." I ask the unprejudiced reader, was ever such incongruity crammed into the pages of any reputable Review?
In the close of this angry writer's remarks, he returns to the temptation of Abraham; I naturally expected he had done with that subject: however I must endeavour to follow him. He says, "Ön Abraham's temptation, Mr. Bellamy observes, It appears by the common version that all the nations of the earth were to be blessed, because Abraham had hearkened to the voice of God. But as this is contrary both to scripture and reason, it will also appear plain that the translation of this clause is not consistent with the original. We cannot hesitate in concluding that the happiness or blessing of any nation, or individual, never depended on the obedience of Abraham; viz. because he had hearkened to the voice of God.''
"Now it is well known," says the critic, "to every reader of scripture, that the blessing to be conferred on all nations was never understood to depend on Abraham's obedience or disobedience. The promise of a Redeemer had been made in express terms long before." I am happy to find that this was so well known, as this gentleman says it was; but I will venture to say, if he will try the experiment, that ninety-nine out of a hundred will understand it according to the common version, that "all the nations of the earth" were to be blessed in the posterity of Abraham, because he had hearkened to the voice of God. But why did not this reviewer inform his readers, that this verse was improperly translated, that the word hithbaarachou, rendered "shall be blessed," should be translated as it is in Jer. iv. 2. "they shall bless themselves" as it is in the Hithpael conjugation. Not that they were to be blessed because Abraham had hearkened to the voice of God, but that they were to bless themselves in his posterity, because the Messiah was to appear in it.
The form of blessing the people before the time of Moses, was in the name " El Shaddai, which is rendered in our com
mon version, GOD ALMIGHTY. But from this period the form of blessing was in the name JEHOVAH. See Numb. vi. 24, 25, 26. because this renewal of the dispensation under Moses was to be the last renewal before the appearance of the Messiah, according to the words of Moses, Deut. xviii. 15. "The Lord thy God will raise up unto thee a prophet from the midst of thee, of thy brethren, like unto me, unto him shall ye hearken:" when all sacrifices were to be abolished, and when the divine communication from God by his word, was to be the same as it was in the beginning. This was the reason why the apostolic church adopted the doxology; used every Sabbath-day, but not understood, and of which I am not ashamed to acknowledge I have been as ignorant as other people; viz. "As it was in the beginning," (the divine communication without sacrifice) "is now, and ever shall be, world without end:" showing the permanency of the Christian church. And therefore the form of blessing was to be in the name T JEHOVAH, which word in its literal form comprehends the past, the present, and the future: the whole revelation of God to man. By the posterity of the woman—the Shiloh of Jacob-the Lord of David-the Redeemer of Israel-the Lamb of God-the Lion of Judah-and the Saviour of men.
The ADVOCATE then, in a vein of triumph, which he would have the reader conclude is the result of profound learning and deep research, says, "We do not think that we should have bestowed so much notice upon Mr. Bellamy, if the subject in which he engaged had been merely literary." From what I have said in these pages, the reader will be able to determine on the merit of the lofty claims of this angry and interested writer, who says, "WE might then have suffered him to enjoy tranquilly a character for superior erudition;" who, although he has adorned his article with the high-sounding terms, "peculiarities of idiom, and niceties of construction;" is wholly unacquainted with them, as I have shown.
"WE now," says this gentleman, "take our leave of Mr. B. with a hope that we shall never have to attend to him again on any similar occasion." This learned dealer in "peculiarities of idiom," either thinks very highly of his own powers, or misunderstands the meaning of the word "hope." A man may wish any thing in spite of reason; but no man of sense, ever hopes" without a reason. I have no doubt that our learned critic earnestly wishes never to see another part of Bellamy's translation from the original Hebrew-all who are interested in publishing Bibles will join him in his wishes; but I tell him for his consolation, that if he feel so inclined, I shall furnish him with another opportunity to
attend me in a few weeks, by laying before the public the Books of Exodus and Leviticus.
Having now answered all the objections which this prejudiced and interested" perverter of truth" has brought against my translation, having shown that he is destitute of those qualifications which are absolutely requisite for a critic in Hebrew; and that he is wholly deficient in that peculiar kind of idiosyncrasy which all the grammatical knowledge of the Hebrew cannot supply, I think it proper to say, that, however he, or any other interested or prejudiced writer, may be disposed to quarrel with the following books, by selecting a few detached passages; I do not mean to lose any more time in polemical controversy. All the objections to my translation have hitherto been made by interested men, who have presumed on a lexicon knowledge of Hebrew, by which I mean, a reference to the root of a word, without attending to the grammar; the different modes of expression according to construction; and what is, we have seen, as necessary, the orthography of the language.
The testimonials which I have from many of our learned clergy, in which they express their decided approbation, and wish to have the following parts as soon as possible, together with the warm approbation of the intelligent public, induce me to conclude that I shall meet with no opposition but from publishers of Bibles, interested writers of Reviews, and such as have the weakness to say that "the very errors are consecrated." But such as wish to see the Scripture divested of those expressions, which, whenever they are read in our churches, cause a blush on the cheek of modesty, and a smile from the profligate; but which I aver, and shall prove, are not to be found in the Hebrew scriptures; will appreciate the merit even of an attempt of this nature, so much called for in all the nations of Europe; instead of opposing the man who has been endeavouring to point out the errors, the obsolete, the vulgar, expressions, put in by the revisers in the 16th century, and to show the delicacy and the purity of expression in the sacred original Hebrew.
I shall now take leave of this intemperate writer; but before I do so, I must acknowledge, that, notwithstanding the unmerited abuse he has heaped on me, I feel gratified for the opportunity which his ungovernable passion, hasty assertions, and general ignorance of Hebrew, have given me, to present in a more detached point of view to the reader, many subjects and modes of expression, necessarily arising from a close attention to the Hebrew, which before had been blended with the leading subjects of biblical research; and which had been but partially given, as I have pub