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July 25, 2006

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» Gettin all biblical, out there from The Anchoress
I apologize for the light blogging - its one of those exacerbation weeks, rather than a remission week. I like remission better. I write more. Anyhow, there is this exceedingly interesting story out... [Read More]

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Thanks for linking to me. Your post is fascinating.

Interesting analysis but you were too quick off the mark!

From the Irish Times Friday 28 July 2006:

"However yesterday, before it all got out of hand, the director of the National Museum, Dr Patrick Wallace, issued a statement saying the text visible on the manuscript found in the bog does not refer to the wiping out of Israel but to the "vale of tears".

"This is part of Verse 7 of Psalm 83 in the old Latin translation of the Bible [the Vulgate] which....would have been the version used in the medieval period.

"In the much later King James version the number of the psalms is different, based on the Hebrew text and the 'vale of tears' occurs in Psalm 84.

"The text about wiping out Israel occurs in the Vulgate as Psalm 82" which equals Psalm 83 (King James version), he said.

"It is hoped that this clarification will serve comfort to anyone worried by earlier reports of the content of the text," Dr Wallace added."

If indeed Psalm 84 was the exposed text, it also seems to be supportive of Israel. Psalm 84 says in part (verses 7-9): "They go from strength to strength, till each appears before God in Zion. Hear my prayer, O Lord God Almighty; listen to me, O God of Jacob. Look upon our shield, O God; look with favor on your anointed one."

As between Muslims and Israelis, this verse appears to favor Israel because it calls upon "the God of Jacob." The name Jacob refers to Israel because the name "Israel" was given to Jacob, the son of Isaac and Rebekah and grandson of Abraham and Sarah, after Jacob wrestled with someone who seemed to be a human but later turned out to be God (Gen 32:22-32). Later, Israel’s twelve tribes were named for the sons of Jacob (Israel) and for two of his grandsons (see Gen 48; 49).

If this discovery in an Irish bog turns out to be nothing more than the discovery of an ancient book of Psalms, it will be thrilling. If the book of Psalms was opened to a portion that included either Psalms 83 or 84, it is a potent reminder of the history of Israel's struggle to survive and its many enemies -- a history that seems to be playing itself out again today in many ways.

It goes without saying that the book of Psalms unequivocally supports Israel. Whether that dictates what should happen today in the Middle East is a different question. But for me it's an easy choice. On the one hand we have terrorists, who use deliberate, attacks that are INTENDED to TARGET noncombatant civilians as their major and often primary strategy. On the other hand we have Israel, a country which strives at great cost to itself to avoid civilian casualties, even among its enemies. When casualties do occur as a result of Israeli attacks, they occur because the terrorists are basing their operations in civilian areas and hiding behind civilians. The Israelis have no interest in killing any civilians, as evidenced by the fact that Israel went out of its way to drop leaflets warning Lebanese civilians to evacuate.

I know good when I see it, and I know evil when I see it. Deliberately targeting civilians as a primary strategy is what terrorists do, and it is unequivocally evil. Thankfully, Israel is fighting that evil today -- something that most nations of the world today lack the courage or insight or motivation to do. Israel should be supported in its effort to rid a portion of the world of the cancer of terrorism.

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