OT231: Isaac and then Jake and then Joe?

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Peter Lever | Forum Activity | Posted: Wed, Dec 7 2016 7:24 AM

Who are they? 

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Graham Criddle | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, Dec 7 2016 7:37 AM

Peter Lever:
Who are they? 

Sorry I don't understand - please clarify / expand

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PetahChristian | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, Dec 7 2016 9:06 AM

I think Peter is referring to this excerpt:

Well, you know the narrative takes us through the highlights (and the lowlights) of the life and pilgrimage of Isaac and then Jake and then Joe. In chapter 49, Jake reports this vision that God’s given him regarding his kids. There’s a line that will be alluded to in Isa 42 and 49. Remember the promise to Abraham and Sarah that kings would come from them? Check out Genesis 49:10: “The scepter will not depart from Judah, nor the ruler’s staff from between his feet, until he, to whom it belongs, comes.” The promise is going to come about through the line of Judah. We learn how God is faithful to the promise as He protects this little family from extinction by making a way for them to flourish in Egypt for a while. By the end of Genesis, Jake dies, then Joe, but the story is not over.

 Ferris, P. W. (2016). OT231 Survey of the Major Prophets. Bellingham, WA: Lexham Press.

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Peter Lever | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, Dec 7 2016 9:06 AM

Sorry i was not clear. The above fragment is from the course, which seem to use queer names out of context. It uses Abe for Abraham.  Just wondering if these are typos or something else.

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Graham Criddle | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, Dec 7 2016 9:12 AM

PetahChristian:
Well, you know the narrative takes us through the highlights (and the lowlights) of the life and pilgrimage of Isaac and then Jake and then Joe. In chapter 49, Jake reports this vision that God’s given him regarding his kids. There’s a line that will be alluded to in Isa 42 and 49. Remember the promise to Abraham and Sarah that kings would come from them? Check out Genesis 49:10: “The scepter will not depart from Judah, nor the ruler’s staff from between his feet, until he, to whom it belongs, comes.” The promise is going to come about through the line of Judah. We learn how God is faithful to the promise as He protects this little family from extinction by making a way for them to flourish in Egypt for a while. By the end of Genesis, Jake dies, then Joe, but the story is not over.

Thanks PetahChristian

So it looks as though these terms are being used for Jacob and Joseph respectively.

Without understanding more of the context / style of presentation it is difficult to comment but, personally, I don't find it helpful

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Peter Lever | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, Dec 7 2016 10:39 AM

Now I kind of get that these are the short names. However they may not be easily understood that way by everyone.

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Matthew C Jones | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, Dec 7 2016 10:44 AM

Graham Criddle:
So it looks as though these terms are being used for Jacob and Joseph respectively.

You mean ir-respectiveliy? Or disrespectively?   Or, cutesy, cutesy?

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Peter Lever | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, Dec 7 2016 11:01 AM

I hope mobile ed will not make  it a requirement to know a particular  culture and its slang to understand the courses other than the Ancient Near Eastern and Greeco-Roman broadly speaking. These two itself are enough of a challenge. Just joking!

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PetahChristian | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, Dec 7 2016 11:34 AM

These are (modern) cultural nicknames for transliterated names. Someone from a different region, culture, language, or time might not understand them in the same way a non-Hebrew speaker might not recognize the Hebrew spelling, pronunciation, or meaning of a name.

We probably don't know how Isaac referred to his son or grandson. Anyway, significant things get lost in transl(iter)ation, whether paraphrased or not.

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Miles Custis | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, Dec 7 2016 11:37 AM

Peter Lever:

Just wondering if these are typos or something else.

Dr. Ferris uses these casual nicknames frequently in the course (Abe for Abraham, Jake for Jacob, Joe for Joseph, etc.). The transcript matches what the speaker says, so they are not typos (although we did have a discussion of how to spell his nickname for Isaac…we ended up going with "Zac" instead of "Zack"). I hope they aren't too confusing. They definitely come across better in the videos than they do just reading through the transcripts.

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Paul | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, Dec 7 2016 11:07 PM

Miles Custis:

Peter Lever:

Just wondering if these are typos or something else.

Dr. Ferris uses these casual nicknames frequently in the course (Abe for Abraham, Jake for Jacob, Joe for Joseph, etc.). The transcript matches what the speaker says, so they are not typos (although we did have a discussion of how to spell his nickname for Isaac…we ended up going with "Zac" instead of "Zack"). I hope they aren't too confusing. They definitely come across better in the videos than they do just reading through the transcripts.

I'm truly amazed that the use of these 'nicknames' or abbreviated names was acceptable in teaching from Scripture. I find it disrespectful and insulting not only concerning the prophets, but also to the student who takes Bible seriously. The issue is not about the terms being confusing, but whether they should have been used at all. 

If Faithlife had a discussion about this with the contracted speaker - couldn't it have been prevented?   I might add that if it is the practice to speak in this way regarding the prophets in the United States, it is certainly not the case elsewhere where these products are also sold.  Keep well Paul   

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Keep Smiling 4 Jesus :) | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Dec 8 2016 12:02 AM

Paul:
The issue is not about the terms being confusing, but whether they should have been used at all. 

Transcript option is a visual filter to replace nickname with desired name, which could be Hebrew. Personally have Names of God visual filter for CJB (along with blue letter for Old Covenant allusions and quotations):

Keep Smiling Smile

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Paul | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Dec 8 2016 3:13 AM

Keep Smiling 4 Jesus :):

Paul:
The issue is not about the terms being confusing, but whether they should have been used at all. 

Transcript option is a visual filter to replace nickname with desired name, which could be Hebrew. Personally have Names of God visual filter for CJB (along with blue letter for Old Covenant allusions and quotations):

Thanks KS4J - Now that's what I would call a very imaginative solution - and with a lot of other potential applications too!  Yes Keep well Paul   

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Jack Caviness | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Dec 8 2016 3:18 AM

Paul:
 I might add that if it is the practice to speak in this way regarding the prophets in the United States, it is certainly not the case elsewhere where these products are also sold.

While it may be the usual practice in some areas, I do not believe it is widespread in the US. Personally, I find it off-putting and a pathetic attempt at trying to be humorous, perhaps with some misguided attempt to make the Bible "relevant" to young adults. If find this disturbing and will refrain from purchasing any course featuring Dr Ferris.

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PetahChristian | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Dec 8 2016 3:22 AM

There are new names we haven't heard yet.

Let us keep our eyes on the prize.

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EastTN | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Dec 8 2016 7:39 AM

Jack Caviness:

Paul:
 I might add that if it is the practice to speak in this way regarding the prophets in the United States, it is certainly not the case elsewhere where these products are also sold.

While it may be the usual practice in some areas, I do not believe it is widespread in the US. Personally, I find it off-putting and a pathetic attempt at trying to be humorous, perhaps with some misguided attempt to make the Bible "relevant" to young adults. If find this disturbing and will refrain from purchasing any course featuring Dr Ferris.

It strikes me as something that could work in the right context with the right audience, but could easily become trite if overdone. The two situations where it would seem most natural to me would be:

1) If you're trying to convey the feel of a shortened or familiar form found in the source text; or

2) You're taking a moment to emphasize the ordinary humanity of a Biblical figure.

Taken much beyond that, I think it would start feeling trite to me.

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Peter Lever | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Dec 8 2016 7:59 AM

1. This  certainly is not a good example for any culture to emulate, or encourage. Will we tolerate the world calling revered biblical characters with such casual names?

2. It makes it harder and not easier for it to be understood by other cultures where  at least a small portion  of Logos customers are.

3. To my knowledge a name is a name  and it is not usually a good etiquette to address somebody by a name than what the person addressed would prefer. Should we care less for Biblical characters? I am not oblivious of names getting contextualised when translated  into other langusages.

4. God forbid! How ridiculous logos commentaries and courses would read like in English if this practice was permitted as an editorial policy for every biblical name in logos publications!

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PetahChristian | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Dec 8 2016 9:33 AM

1. It would be good for the world to be speaking of God's relationship with such people (who would probably prefer that God be revered, not them). We shouldn't mind what the world called them, because we don't have to judge the world.

2. There's no reason to believe that informal names weren't used between friends or family members, even in historical times. Are Isaac and Jacob and Joseph not yet our brothers? Are we not a part of the same family, and have the same Father? 

3a. What name does God prefer that we use for Him? Does He mind being called Abba by His children? Is that too casual?

3b. Some people wouldn't address a person by the name they preferred, but by their birth name.

4. If we reject a curriculum for being too informal for our taste, rather than whether it teaches what the Word of God says, perhaps we are judging amiss? This is a brother in Christ. Must we lecture him (or FL) on what we would find outwardly acceptable and proper, or is it God who determines what is inwardly acceptable and pleasing to Him?

I don't think our majestic God keeps us at arm's length. I think He cherishes us, embraces us, adopted us, made us heirs with Jesus, and indwells us. After so great a gift, will God require some rigidity or formality between His children, or between us and Him?

That our tongues would heal instead of wound, and praise God instead of disparaging men. Please, let love and grace cover this.

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EastTN | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Dec 8 2016 12:19 PM

Whether or not informal names were used in Biblical times would seem a reasonable topic to research. To the extent Scripture does use informal or familiar names, it would certainly seem appropriate to translate them in a manner that conveys that nuance to modern readers.

On the broader topic, it seems to me to be legitimate to think about whether the language we use:

  1. Presents God's word to others in the most faithful and effective way; and
  2. Helps us think about God and His word in a way that helps us grow towards Christian maturity.

I'm not prejudging the answers to those questions. My gut instinct is that there may be certain settings where deliberately using nicknames for Biblical figures might be useful, but that overdoing it could quickly become unhelpful.  But I could be wrong about that - it certainly wouldn't be the first time.

Of course, even if this is a useful conversation, this may not be the most appropriate forum. Which is fine. The excerpt makes it less likely that I would buy the course, but it's not an issue that I would fall on my sword over - and I have absolutely no desire to talk anyone else out of using the course if they think it would be useful for them.

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doc | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Dec 8 2016 1:11 PM

I don't own this course at this point in time but will look at it in the future when my budget and the price meet in a happy place. While this is a little bit quirky I would not boycott anything by this speaker just because he chooses to use these shortened names. For me while I appreciate that we have the lives of these men and women presented to us in the biblical text in order that we might learn about God, about us, our relationship with God and one another and most importantly of God's plan of salvation and our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, I would not go so far as saying that they should be revered. They are sinners just like us, fallible and capable of failing God and the story of their lives in the scriptures tells us of both their failure and faith. 

I think if it does not then a note to the student should be added to the start of the course explaining the speakers naming convention used throughout the course along with, possibly when the character is first discussed in the course, a discussion of their full name and its meaning so that this is not lost by the use of the short form names. 

Please note I am only saying what I feel comfortable with in terms of usage of these names in this format. I do not mean to direspect or invalidate anyone who takes a different view on this topic. I don't believe anyone here is suggesting this issue is critical to our salvation so I think a range of views is what we should expect, whether those views are culturally driven, possibly by the era in which we grew up or they are just personal preferences.

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