I've been reading Hebrew passages for several weeks now. By this time, I'm not just reading little passages that seem to have been crafted. I'm into the story of Joseph and his brothers. It is obvious that it has been edited slightly in order to accommodate the fact that certain things have not yet been introduced; but it is very readable--and very gripping. I am finding that the act of translating it back into English is creating new opportunities for me to stop and meditate on the implications of the story. When I simply read it in English, I have to force myself to stop and figure out those implications, search for reasons why little details are so important. The Hebrew language has a way of bringing things to attention via repeated words or use of unusual word order that English just can't do; and when I stop and think about how to put those things into English, I have to ask myself why those things are there and what the significance really is. For the first time in my life, I find myself getting excited about this and making fascinating discoveries as I read! It makes me want to keep up my skill with this and become able to do it more efficiently. I'm still a very slow reader/translator!
reading the Hebrew Bible
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