The meaning of ἐνισχυσάτωσαν at Deut. 32:42

Semantic Range, Lexicography, and other approaches to word meaning - in general, or for particular words.

The meaning of ἐνισχυσάτωσαν at Deut. 32:42

Postby Scott Lawson » September 2nd, 2013, 7:34 pm

Deuteronomy 32:43:

43 εὐφράνθητε οὐρανοί ἅμα αὐτῷ καὶ προσκυνησάτωσαν αὐτῷ πάντες υἱοὶ θεοῦ εὐφράνθητε ἔθνη μετὰ τοῦ λαοῦ αὐτοῦ καὶ ἐνισχυσάτωσαν αὐτῷ πάντες ἄγγελοι θεοῦ ὅτι τὸ αἷμα τῶν υἱῶν αὐτοῦ ἐκδικᾶται καὶ ἐκδικήσει καὶ ἀνταποδώσει δίκην τοῖς ἐχθροῖς καὶ τοῖς μισοῦσιν ἀνταποδώσει καὶ ἐκκαθαριεῖ κύριος τὴν γῆν τοῦ λαοῦ αὐτοῦ

ἐνισχυσάτωσαν verb 3rd pl aorist imperative active - strengthen

The NET of the LXX translates ἐνισχυσάτωσαν as "prevail." Is this because it would seem irreverent to think of "strengthening" God or is there some other factor involved that I am overlooking?

Deuteronomy 32:43 - NET
"43 Be glad, O skies, with him, and let all the divine sons do obeisance to him.
Be glad, O nations, with his people, and let all the angels of God prevail for him.
For he will avenge the blood of his sons and take revenge and repay the enemies with a sentence, and he will repay those who hate, and the Lord shall cleanse the land of his people."
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Re: The meaning of ἐνισχυσάτωσαν at Deut. 32:42

Postby Stephen Carlson » September 17th, 2013, 9:28 am

Here is the lexicon entry for this verb from the LSJ:
ἐνισχύω, strengthen, confirm, ὁ χρόνος ταῦτα -ύσει πάντα Hp.Lex 3; ἄγγελος ἐνισχύων αὐτόν Ev.Luc.22.43:—Pass., Jul. Gal.Fr.7.
II. intr., prevail in or among, ἐν ταῖς πόλεσι ἐνισχύει τὰ νόμιμα Arist.EN 1180b4: abs., Id.PA653a31 al.; τοῦτ’ ἐνισχύειν ἑκάστῳ Thphr.Sens. 63, cf. 67; παρά τισιν ἐ. ἐν παροιμίας μέρει D.S.20.58; ἐνίσχυσεν ὡς . . the opinion prevailed that . ., Id.5.57.

Looks like the NET went with the intransitive meaning.
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Re: The meaning of ἐνισχυσάτωσαν at Deut. 32:42

Postby Ken M. Penner » September 17th, 2013, 9:45 am

Scott Lawson wrote:ἐνισχυσάτωσαν αὐτῷ πάντες ἄγγελοι θεοῦ

αὐτῷ is not accusative but dative, so the intransitive meaning is needed here.
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Re: The meaning of ἐνισχυσάτωσαν at Deut. 32:42

Postby Scott Lawson » September 17th, 2013, 11:03 am

Ken,

Wouldn't we still expect a transitive with an indirect object in the dative? And can't the dative be used also for a direct object not just the accusative?
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Re: The meaning of ἐνισχυσάτωσαν at Deut. 32:42

Postby Ken M. Penner » September 17th, 2013, 11:36 am

Scott Lawson wrote:Wouldn't we still expect a transitive with an indirect object in the dative? And can't the dative be used also for a direct object not just the accusative?


Transitive "strengthen" instances of ἐνισχύω in the LXX :
Jdg 3:12; 5:12; 16:28; 2 Kgdms 22:40; Ps 147:2; Sir 50:4; Joel 4:16; Isa 41:10; 42:6; Ezek 30:25; 34:4, 16; Dan 10:19; 11:5 all use the accusative for their direct object.
There is one possible LXX use of a dative for the direct object, in Hos 10:11. But that's because of a mistranslation when a dalet was read as a resh.
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Re: The meaning of ἐνισχυσάτωσαν at Deut. 32:42

Postby Scott Lawson » September 17th, 2013, 12:04 pm

Thanks Ken for expanding on your point.
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Re: The meaning of ἐνισχυσάτωσαν at Deut. 32:42

Postby Stephen Carlson » September 17th, 2013, 1:21 pm

The tough thing with this verb is that the connection between the differing transitive and intransitive meanings is not readily apparent. I think the idea is that the transitive is "make someone/something strong" and the intransitive is "be/stay strong (in some circumstance)." It would be a little clearer if the intransitive sense was middle in form too.
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