Breath of life

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nicky crane | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Jun 10 2010 4:32 AM

you wrote to me but not on the page: 

So you are verifying that the word, nephesh, is in the Hebrew text we know as genesis 1:30?

If so...Can you explain why the NASB, KJ, And NKJ chose not to include it in their translations?

 

yes, nephesh is in the Hebrew text of gen 1 30, both in my fairly ancient Hebrew Bible and in the Logos Stuttgart edition.

Without being able to answer for the translations you ask about, if you have breath you are  presumably alive, so breath of life could be a tautology.  I sometimes translate has the breath of life by breathes.  It's impossible to translate 100%  from one language into another.  Hence the advantage of comparing different translations if you don't hAVE A USEFUL KNOWLEDGE OF gREEK AND hEBREW.  NKJV would naturally follow KJV, I imagine.

 When helping semi-literate Albanian villagers who have a limited vocabulary to understand and learn to reproduce what the Bible says, I need to simplify into words and thought forms that make sense to them.  I think life in Gen 1 30 is probably an adequate translation of breath of life.   Being of a pedantic turn of mind, I want to know for my own benefit what the original says.  But I only tell others what the original says if our Albanian translation has a horrific mistranslation.  Or misunderstanding.  Like Matthew 2 where the magi found Mary and the child and bowed down before/worshipped HIM/HER.  The Albanian word could mean either him or her, and our women understood it as that the Magi bowed down to Mary, which was very logical as it's contrary to Albanian culture to show respect to an infant!  So I agreed that the translation could mean either him or her, but the original definitely said him!

 

Posts 116
Chris Thompson | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Jun 10 2010 7:46 AM

nicky crane:
When helping semi-literate Albanian villagers who have a limited vocabulary

Thanks;

I hope this doesn't end up being a double post. I posted these thoughts some time ago...and as of yet, they have not appeared.

I was just overwhelmed to have to admit that the interlinears and the exegetical guide were that unreliable. Though I love the KJV, i have long been aware of errors in the translation. I just didn't realize that errors/deletions in a translation, are mirrored in the interlinear for that particular translation. Being semi-literate,  i just ASSUMED that the "original text" we see in the interlinear held more or less to the actual original...Live and Learn.

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Milford Charles Murray | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Jun 10 2010 8:07 AM

William Bingham:

Rosie Perera:
I haven't had any sleep for 36 hours.

I had a friend at Oklahoma State University that would remain awake for 72-120 hours.  When he slept he did it for 24 hours.  Are you like my friend Rosie? 

I am praying for you (really).  Rosie, I care for you sis.....Peace in Christ our Lord and Savior.  One God now and forever.

 

Peace Indeed, Rosie.  I'd like to echo William's thoughts.   Your post was fantastically beautiful and helpful.  I also have communicated with God through our Lord Jesus Christ a number of times about you and your welfare; and I will again, I'm sure.

           But, sharing takes it's toll.          How often care givers "burn out"!      Let God help you not do that, Rosie.  I can say -- with so many others -- that you are truly appreciated and -- I am pleased to say -- even "loved" by many in this Logos Community.

Two things I'd like to say:

One:  I think Logos should provide a Forum Channel for this kind of sharing.  How helpful it is!

Two:  Rosie, remember the instructions by the airline attendant before taking off:      In case of trouble, use the oxygen for yourself first.  Then you will be capable of taking care of your child.               In other words ............   TAKE CARE!          *smile*

Philippians 4:  4 Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, Rejoice. 5 Let your reasonableness be known to everyone. The Lord is at hand..........

Posts 1374
nicky crane | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Jun 10 2010 11:09 AM

kjv interlinear does have the Hebrew nephesh hayyah  (נֶ֣פֶשׁ חַיָּ֔ה) in the interlinear at the bottom.  Also at +, highlighted, if you pass your mouse over it, it says  Heb. a living soul.  I'm learning lots about Logos 4 by following this up!

Posts 116
Chris Thompson | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Jun 10 2010 11:52 AM

Yes...me too...Praise God. I was very confused. I now see the original text as i hoped it would be...not affected by the translation.The KJV just translated it "life", as opposed to "breath" in the ESV. You mentioned that you considered "life" to be an adequate  rendering. It certainly didn't solve the OP's question...but it sure brought new light to my eyes....Thanks

Did you notice that in verses 21 and 24, it was translated "living creatures"?

 

Posts 19333
Rosie Perera | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Jun 10 2010 12:46 PM

Milford Charles Murray:

Peace Indeed, Rosie.  I'd like to echo William's thoughts.   Your post was fantastically beautiful and helpful.  I also have communicated with God through our Lord Jesus Christ a number of times about you and your welfare; and I will again, I'm sure.

           But, sharing takes it's toll.          How often care givers "burn out"!      Let God help you not do that, Rosie.  I can say -- with so many others -- that you are truly appreciated and -- I am pleased to say -- even "loved" by many in this Logos Community.

Two things I'd like to say:

One:  I think Logos should provide a Forum Channel for this kind of sharing.  How helpful it is!

Two:  Rosie, remember the instructions by the airline attendant before taking off:      In case of trouble, use the oxygen for yourself first.  Then you will be capable of taking care of your child.               In other words ............   TAKE CARE!          *smile*

Thank you, and all the others who responded in like fashion. I got 12 hours of sleep last night. Very good. I will try to be more mindful of my health and not get into these massive long sessions of answering posts here. It's fun, and I learn a lot as I go, and I love knowing that I'm helping people. But I do value my long-term ability to keep it up and don't want to burn out. Plus I do have other things in my life that I need to be working on (which I'm, ahem, procrastinating on). Blessings.

Posts 116
Chris Thompson | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Jun 10 2010 1:43 PM

Rosie Perera:
Plus I do have other things in my life that I need to be working on

Would it help if you knew that there are other insomniac excessive compulsive seekers who will guard the ship while you catch up on your procrastinations?

Posts 19333
Rosie Perera | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Jun 10 2010 1:51 PM

Abi Gail:

Rosie Perera:
Plus I do have other things in my life that I need to be working on

Would it help if you knew that there are other insomniac excessive compulsive seekers who will guard the ship while you catch up on your procrastinations?

Yes, that does help. But I've also got a competitive streak which can be useful but can also be my downfall at times. I want to be the first one to reply and give a better response than others. That is something that I need to regularly repent of. Backing off to let others answer questions is a good discipline.

Posts 116
Chris Thompson | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Jun 10 2010 1:56 PM

God isn't finished with us.Stick out tongue

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MJ. Smith | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Jun 10 2010 2:12 PM

Rosie Perera:
I want to be the first one to reply and give a better response than others.

I have a perfect solution! You post the hours you intend to sleep and we'll promise not to answer questions posed in that time period. Now you'd have to promise to rotate you sleeping hours in a manner that ensured no geographic area took more that its fair share of the delay.

Another option if you didn't want to make your sleep schedule public, would be for Logos to bring the forums down any time you need to sleep. This might be a hard sell for such a customer-oriented company. But you're friends with people in high places, right?

A less than optimal solution would be a new hide feature - all posts that were made during your sleep would be permanently hidden from your view. This is obviously simply a simulation of the better solutions provided above.

Another sub-optimal solution for the forums but probably more optimal for you, is to enroll in the MJ Center for Recovering Logos Forumists. The rates for this program are admittedly quite high (in order to enhance my research of the addiction via the addition of several high priced items to my Logos library). But the success rate is stellar (at least there have been no failures although the long term studies are not completed). However, this solution would probably be bad for the forums 'cause you wouldn't be posting any more.

But trust me, I'm here to help you.Cool

Orthodox Bishop Hilarion Alfeyev: "To be a theologian means to have experience of a personal encounter with God through prayer and worship."

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Rosie Perera | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Jun 10 2010 2:24 PM

MJ. Smith:

I have a perfect solution! You post the hours you intend to sleep...

Good idea, only I always intend to sleep from about 11am or midnight (Pacific time) to about 8am. But I never follow through with my intentions. Maybe I'm messing up the time zones. I'm sleeping from midnight Pacific time until 8am GMT and getting precisely 0 hours of sleep each night. Wink

Posts 116
Chris Thompson | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Jun 10 2010 3:02 PM

Rosie Perera:
But I've also got a competitive streak

I was just pondering.  How wide does the streak have to become before the person is reduced to a streak on the competitive force?

Posts 325
Sue McIntyre | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Jun 10 2010 3:33 PM

Thank you to everyone who has contributed some of their knowledge to this thread. I have found it very valuable and it has helped me to better understand some Logos features and their application (especially in this case within the framework of a very interesting subject). Your contributions are highly valued and of great benefit to us 'L platers' in L4.

Thank you to all and please look after yourselves. 

God bless

Sue 

Posts 5430
David Paul | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Jun 10 2010 4:07 PM

Graham Criddle:

I am reading a book on the work of the Holy Spirit and came across a discussion of the meaning of "breath of life" in Genesis 2:7.

It states that "breath of life" cannot mean an immortal human soul because the same words have been used in Genesis 1:30 to describe animals and birds.

I don't want to start a theological debate here but just trying to use Logos SW to validate whether this is an accurate statement.

Using the RI feature in the ESV it shows that the Lemma in 1:30 for "breath" is 'nps' whereas in 2:7 it is 'nsmh'.

Furthermore, It does appear that the phrase "breath of life" in 1:30 is actually equivalent to "living creature" in 2:7.

Graham,

Your conclusions are correct. Humans do not have an immortal human soul. Nothing in scripture indicates they do...that is primarily a Greek infusion from the so-called Early Church Fathers. Nephesh means essentially "breather", i.e. one that has simple spirit-breath (which is not materially different from that which dogs, mice, or grasshoppers have, even if YHWH personally imparted it.)  moving through them and providing life. It is surprisingly close to the Greek psuchei, which means virtually the same thing. A "soul" is a living creature. The "dust" was fashioned into a human form, advanced brain design and all, and then YHWH "breathed into it" and it "BECAME a living soul". Humans do not have inherent eternal life, for the soul that sins shall die. As David said, their is no awareness of Elohiym in the grave. When you die, you are dead. The spirit, like a "memory stick" leaves the body and returns to Him, but is non-functional like a battery that has "potential" but is incapable of imparting "life" unless inserted in a mechanical "body". All departed spirits are non-functional while their former bodies return to dust, awaiting their resurrection. That's kind of the whole point of a resurrection. If you are flapping around in heaven after death, why would you need or even want to be resurrected?

On this point, when it says "life is in the blood"--it ISN'T saying life IS the blood. It is the "air", specifically the oxygen in air, and which is "breathed in" and "infused in" the blood that imparts life to mortal creatures. The oxygen is akin to the spirit of life, a la John 3. Regarding "nephesh" which breathe in and rely upon oxygen for life, then it is a result that even bacteria, etc. are nephesh.

While I'm on the subject, Enoch and Elijah both died, just like every other human that has ever lived...they didn't get whisked away to heaven. Their "translations" were no different that the one that Phillip underwent when he was "taken" from the Ethiopian and dropped in Caesarea. The souls under the altar are "figurative language"--kind of obvious considering that it would otherwise get mighty cramped under there. Forget "how many angels on the head of a pin"--rather, "how many souls can you cram under the altar"? Y'shua Himself said that no one had ascended into heaven except the One who came down from heaven. The disobedient are destroyed, they are not roasting in eternal torment. Human ARE "mortal souls"...they do not have "immortal souls". This is precisely why is talks about humans who can "destroy the body" but the God can "destroy both body and soul". The obedient who are resurrected receive their "lives"--their "souls"--back when their personal human spirits, juiced up on the Holy Spirit (I'm speaking metaphorically) are plugged into "spirit bodies" and thus receive eternal life, which the Bible calls a gift. Eternal life is inherent in YHWH alone. Even hassatan will be destroyed eventually.

Keep studying...you'll be amazed at how much of what you learned in Sunday school is unbiblical.

ASROCK x570 Creator, AMD R9 3950x, HyperX 64gb 3600 RAM, Asus Strix RTX 2080 ti, 2tb m.2 Seagate Firecuda SSD (x2) ...and other mechano-digital happiness.

"The Unbelievable Work...believe it or not."

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Milford Charles Murray | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Jun 10 2010 4:58 PM

David Paul:

Graham Criddle:

I am reading a book on the work of the Holy Spirit and came across a discussion of the meaning of "breath of life" in Genesis 2:7.

It states that "breath of life" cannot mean an immortal human soul because the same words have been used in Genesis 1:30 to describe animals and birds.

I don't want to start a theological debate here but just trying to use Logos SW to validate whether this is an accurate statement.

Using the RI feature in the ESV it shows that the Lemma in 1:30 for "breath" is 'nps' whereas in 2:7 it is 'nsmh'.

Furthermore, It does appear that the phrase "breath of life" in 1:30 is actually equivalent to "living creature" in 2:7.

 

Graham,

Your conclusions are correct. Humans do not have an immortal human soul. Nothing in scripture indicates they do...that is primarily a Greek infusion from the so-called Early Church Fathers. Nephesh means essentially "breather", i.e. one that has simple spirit-breath (which is not materially different from that which dogs, mice, or grasshoppers have, even if YHWH personally imparted it.)  moving through them and providing life. It is surprisingly close to the Greek psuchei, which means virtually the same thing. A "soul" is a living creature. The "dust" was fashioned into a human form, advanced brain design and all, and then YHWH "breathed into it" and it "BECAME a living soul". Humans do not have inherent eternal life, for the soul that sins shall die. As David said, their is no awareness of Elohiym in the grave. When you die, you are dead. The spirit, like a "memory stick" leaves the body and returns to Him, but is non-functional like a battery that has "potential" but is incapable of imparting "life" unless inserted in a mechanical "body". All departed spirits are non-functional while their former bodies return to dust, awaiting their resurrection. That's kind of the whole point of a resurrection. If you are flapping around in heaven after death, why would you need or even want to be resurrected?

On this point, when it says "life is in the blood"--it ISN'T saying life IS the blood. It is the "air", specifically the oxygen in air, and which is "breathed in" and "infused in" the blood that imparts life to mortal creatures. The oxygen is akin to the spirit of life, a la John 3. Regarding "nephesh" which breathe in and rely upon oxygen for life, then it is a result that even bacteria, etc. are nephesh.

While I'm on the subject, Enoch and Elijah both died, just like every other human that has ever lived...they didn't get whisked away to heaven. Their "translations" were no different that the one that Phillip underwent when he was "taken" from the Ethiopian and dropped in Caesarea. The souls under the altar are "figurative language"--kind of obvious considering that it would otherwise get mighty cramped under there. Forget "how many angels on the head of a pin"--rather, "how many souls can you cram under the altar"? Y'shua Himself said that no one had ascended into heaven except the One who came down from heaven. The disobedient are destroyed, they are not roasting in eternal torment. Human ARE "mortal souls"...they do not have "immortal souls". This is precisely why is talks about humans who can "destroy the body" but the God can "destroy both body and soul". The obedient who are resurrected receive their "lives"--their "souls"--back when their personal human spirits, juiced up on the Holy Spirit (I'm speaking metaphorically) are plugged into "spirit bodies" and thus receive eternal life, which the Bible calls a gift. Eternal life is inherent in YHWH alone. Even hassatan will be destroyed eventually.

Keep studying...you'll be amazed at how much of what you learned in Sunday school is unbiblical.

Dear David Paul,

     You have posted enough to know that it is offensive to the members of this Logos Community, and against the Logos Forum Guidelines to post this kind of theological drivel.  You seem to want to deliberately upset many humble, trusting believing Brothers and Sisters.

        You know better or at least should know better.  What is your motive?  What are you trying to prove by this "Shock" posting.  I am not one of the so-called Logos MVP "star" dear brothers and sisters, so I do not have the authority to officially rebuke you and ask you to desist.  But!  I do find this post and your attitude quite offensive. 

Philippians 4:  4 Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, Rejoice. 5 Let your reasonableness be known to everyone. The Lord is at hand..........

Posts 19333
Rosie Perera | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Jun 10 2010 7:33 PM

David, there are many devout and well-educated theologians who take different sides or are agnostic on the point of whether the wicked are annihilated after death or are sent to everlasting punishment. It is an open debate. There is biblical support for both positions. Your supercilious tone is unlikely to change anyone's mind who sees it the other way.

My I also remind you of the forum guidelines, which you can find linked from the upper right of the home page:

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Posts 128
Nathan | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Jun 10 2010 11:45 PM

David Paul:
Your conclusions are correct. Humans do not have an immortal human soul. Nothing in scripture indicates they do...that is primarily a Greek infusion from the so-called Early Church Fathers.

David,

Thank you so much for your post, it is refreshing!  I get so tired of this "greek mindset" drivel that infuses every aspect of mainstream theological thinking!  I seriously do not understand why people take offense to thought and conjecture!  A little drash is good for the breath of life!  SERIOUSLY!  I think you make the whole point of biblical word study...!  You MUST consider contextual mindset (ie Hebraic), you cannot just look at all of your beautiful resources, use your greek mindset and come to a nifty, and hasty conclusion!  Oh BTW David did not start this "Theological" debate.... Graham did...  Resources are good, but mindset is better, thanks David.

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Graham Criddle | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Jun 10 2010 11:56 PM

Hi everyone

Thanks for the responses and insight - sorry for not re-engaging sooner, it was a busy day in college yesterday including a Greek exam Smile

Rosie - many thanks for your initial response (though I do share the concern others have expressed for your continual health!) - the comment on the use of lexicons was helpful but particularly pointing me back to the commentaries. I guess I was trying to "work this out for myself" but with my (lack of) knowledge of Hebrew that wasn't very likely! As you point out the WBC comments on this usage in 2:7 and seems to be saying that God indeed breathed into man - making him alive - with the consequence that he became alive. It goes on to say that this is not what distinguishes man from animals as animals are described in the same terms (going back to my earlier comment that the phrase translated as "living creature" in 2:7 is the same as that translated as "breath of life" in 1:30).

So - from the commentary and lexicon - the fact of God breathing into man is what made him live but it isn't what constitutes him different to the rest of the "animal world". This difference (again according to WBC) is initially that man alone is made in God's image but it does accept that man alone receives the breath of God directly which was picked up in the first post which Nicky made where she commented that 2:7 shows God breathing into man's nostrils gives us life from God's own breath, unlike animals. 

M.J. - thanks for the insight from Onkelos - just not quite sure what to make of it!!

I found the discussion between Nicky and Abi very useful and it clarified some useful points about the RIs and went from there to look at  "Andersen-Forbes Phrase Marker Analysis" and "Andersen-Forbes Analysed Text" for  some useful insight on how the original language was laid out.

I then thought I should look at some dictionaries.

The Dictionary of Biblical Imagery argues that human breath is equated with the divine breath:

 

"Breath is an image that links God with humanity in creation, salvation, prophecy, faith and judgment. At the creation of Adam, “the LORD God formed man of dust from the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living being” (Gen 2:7 NASB). Human breath, equated with the divine breath, is an allotment of life, a portion of the divine spark and a gift (Job 27:3).

Leland Ryken, Jim Wilhoit, Tremper Longman et al., Dictionary of Biblical Imagery, electronic ed., 119 (Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press, 2000)."

and that:

 

"Every living thing has the breath of life in its nostrils, but only man has the breath of God in his nostrils."

Leland Ryken, Jim Wilhoit, Tremper Longman et al., Dictionary of Biblical Imagery, electronic ed., 597 (Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press, 2000).

 

 

The Dictionary of the Old Testament: Pentateuch states:

 

"God is the Creator of all life: physical, animal and human (Gen 1–2). Both the creation accounts distinguish humanity from the rest of creation as created in the *image of God (Gen 1:26–27) and as receiving the divine “breath of life” (Gen 2:7). "

T. Desmond Alexander and David W. Baker, Dictionary of the Old Testament: Pentateuch, 533 (Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press, 2003).

 

Overall the thrust of what is being said here is that while all animal life has the breath of life it is only man who received the breath of God directly in him and that this is part of man's uniqueness with another significant part being that we are created in God's image and likeness.

However (back to my original post), to say that

"breath of life" cannot mean an immortal human soul because the same words have been used in Genesis 1:30 to describe animals and birds.

is not correct because different Hebrew words are used for "breath of life" in 1:30 and 2:7. This doesn't - of course - mean that it is necessarily correct to infer from "breath of life" in 2:7 that man does have an immortal soul. We find that elsewhere but that's a different discussion!

Thanks again

Graham

EDIT: I started this reply before seeing Nathan's response so shouldn't be seen in any way as a response to what he posted

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MJ. Smith | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Jun 11 2010 12:19 AM

Nathan Barnes:
Oh BTW David did not start this "Theological" debate.... Graham did...

Ah, the discussion is at the "he started it" stage? It does not matter who started it. What matters is that we play by Logos' rules in Logos' forums. Even if that is an English-law Greek-logic mindset.Smile

 

Orthodox Bishop Hilarion Alfeyev: "To be a theologian means to have experience of a personal encounter with God through prayer and worship."

Posts 128
Nathan | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Jun 11 2010 1:12 AM

MJ. Smith:

Ah, the discussion is at the "he started it" stage? It does not matter who started it. What matters is that we play by Logos' rules in Logos' forums. Even if that is an English-law Greek-logic mindset.Smile

I noticed that you missed the whole point...resources are great but mindset is better.  Lexicons are great but mindset is better..do you want me to go on...?  How lame, mr. m.j., this is not about "rules", the whole context of this thread is about how to use L4  to understand the original language...ie mindset.  So as long as we play along in (conform to) this "greek" utopia we are within the "rules".  You missed the whole point dude.

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