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THE

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HAPHTARAHS.*

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He that says the Haphtarah, before he begins says as follows. Baruch Altah. Blessed art thou, O Lord ! oar God, King of

the universe, that hath chosen good Prophets, and with pleasure declared to them the truth: blessed art thou, O Lord! who gavest the law to Moses thy servant, to Israel thy people, and to the true and righteous Prophets.

Then he says the Haphtarah, and afterwards as follows. Baruch Altah. Blessed art thou, O Lord! our God, King and

Creator of the universe, whose righteousness is to all generations; the God that is faithful, saith and doeth, speaketh and performeth, whose words are truth and just. Faithful art thou, O Lord ! our God, thy faithful words thou recallest not; for the Almighty, faithful, and merciful thou art

. Blessed art thou, O Lord! who art faithful with all thy words. Rachem Ol Zion. Have compassion on Zion, for that is our

residence, and to the meek mayest thou perform thy salvation speedily in our days. Blessed art thou, O Lord! who will rejoice Zion with her posterity. Somchinu Adonie Rejoice us, O Lord! our God, with Elias Elohinu, the Prophet thy servant, and with the

kingdom of the house of David, that thine anointed speedily shall come on his throne, to rejoice our hearts. Let no other enjoy that glory to sít thereon, as thou hast declared that the light of David shall not be quenched. Blessed art thou, O Lord! the shield of David. OI Hatora, For the sake of thy law, thy sacrifices, and thy

prophets, and for the sake of this day of rest, which thou hast given unto us, O Lord! our God, to sanctify and to rest, to honour and to glorify. Therefore, O Lord ! our God, with reverence we acknowledge thee, and bless thee and thy name, in the mouth of all living continually, and to eternity. Blessed art thou, O Lord! who sanctifieth the Sabbath.

The word Haphtarah, signifies Section.

בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה יְיָ אֱלֹהֵינוּ מֶלֶךְ הָעוֹלָם אֲשֶׁר בָּחַר בִּנְבִיאִים

טוֹבִים וְרָצָה בְּדִבְרֵיהֶם הַנֶאֱמָרִים בֶּאֱמֶת בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה יְ הַבּוֹחֵר בַּתּוֹרָה בְּמשֶׁה עַבְדּוֹ וּבְיִשְׂרָאֵל עַמוֹ

וּבִנְבִיאֵי הָאֱמֶת וְהַצְדֶק :

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ואחר קריאתה יברך בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה יְיָ אֱלֹהֵינוּ מֶלֶךְ הָעוֹלָם צוּר כָּל הָעוֹלָמִים

צַדִּיק בְּכָל הַדּוֹרוֹת הָאֵל הַנֶאֱמָן הָאוֹמֵר וְעוֹשֶׂה מְדַבֵּר וּמְקִיים • כִּי כָל דְּבָרָיו אֱמֶת וָצֶדֶק נֶאֱמָן אַתָּה הוּא יְיָ אֱלֹהֵינוּ וְנֶאֱמָנִים דְּבָרֶיךָ וְדָבָר אֶחָד מִדְבָרִיךְ אָחוֹר לֹא יָשׁוּב רֵיקָם כִּי אֵל מֶלֶךְ נֶאֱמָן אָתָּה: בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה יְיָ

הָאֵל הַנֶאֱמָן בְּכָל דְּבָרָיו : רַחֵם עַל צִיוֹן כִּי הִיא בֵית חַיִּינוּ וְלַעֲלוּבַת נֶפֶשׁ תּוֹשִׁיעַ

בִּמְהֵרָה בְיָמֵינוּ: בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה יָ מְשָׂמֵחַ צִיוֹן בְּבָנֶיהָ : שַׁמְחֵנוּ יְיָ אֱלֹהֵינוּ בְּאֵלִיָּהוּ הַנָּבִיא עַבְרֶךְ וּבְמַלְכוּת בֵּית

דָּוִד מְשִׁיחֶךָ בִּמְהֵרָה יָבֹא וְיָגֵל לִבֵּנוּ עַל כִּסְאוֹ לֹא יִשֶׁב זָר וְלֹא יִנְחֲלוּ עוֹד אֲחֵרִים אֶת כְּבוֹדוֹ - כִּי בְשֵׁם קָדְשְׁךְ נִשְׁבַּעְתָּ לוֹ שֶׁלֹא יִכְבֶּה גֶרוֹ לְעוֹלָם וָעֶד: בָּרוּךְ

אַתָּה יְ מָגֵן דָּוִד : עַל הַתּוֹרָה וְעַל הָעֲבוֹדָה וְעַל הַנְּבִיאִים וְעַל יוֹם הַשַׁבָּת

הַזֶּה שֶׁנָּתַתָּ לָנוּ יָ אֱלֹהֵינוּ לִקְדוֹשָׁה וְלִמְנוּחָה לְכָבוֹד וּלְתִפְאֶרֶת עַל הַכּל יְיָ אֱלֹהֵינוּ אָנוּ מוֹדִים לָךְ וּמְבָרְכִים אוֹתָךְ יִתְבָּרַךְ שִׁמְךְ בְּפִי כָל חַי תָּמִיד לְעוֹלָם וָעֶד: בָּרוּךְ

אַתָּה יְ מְקַדַּשׁ הַשַׁבָּת :

THE ARGUMENT.

The event which gave rise to the Reading of the 17297, i. e. Sections,

of the Prophets, commenced from the Reign of Antiochus, surnamed Epiphanes, or Famous; called also Epimanes, or mad; (he was the eighth King of Syria :) who after he had smitten Egypt, went against the Israelites in Jerusalem, where he made a great massacre, plundered and polluted the Holy Temple, and gave orders to destroy their books, and prohibited them of Reading the Weekly Divisions of the Pentateuch : during which time they substituted to read the Haphtarahs, i. e. Weekly Sections of the Prophets, to correspond as nearly as possible, with the Weekly Divisions of the Pentateuch; which they continued Reading till the time of the Maccabees, when Mattathias and his son Judas Maccabeus rose up, and went to war with Antiochus Epiphanes, and conquered him: at which time, the Weekly Divisions of the Pentateuch were re-established to be read among them. In commemoration of their being deprived of the Pentateuch, they continued saying the Haphtarahs after Reading the Weekly Division of the Pentateuch, which custom is retained and observed among them unto this day.

* The Pentateuch is divided in fifty-two parts, for the fifty-two weeks in

the year, one of which is read every week till the Pentateuch is finished.

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,שלמה and שמלה ; indiferently used for a lamb כשב and כבש ,find

after a verb, is often used for the nominative, meaning to express thereby the identity of the person, as when we say, in English, “ the very man.” A text in Judges, chap. ix. verse 28, is rendered unintelligible, on account of the English translator's mistaking this particle for the accusative case.

7th, The transposition of the letters of a radix is another difficulty that presents itself when we attempt the correction of the present English translation; and it often occurs in the sacred writings, as we

, a ; , npoos and shop, &c. &c., which renders a passage in Psalm 1xxvi. verse 4, very obscure and unintelligible: the word 789 is there translated glorious; but I think it should be understood to mean 8713, terrible ; for, with what propriety can glory or beauty be compared to mountains of prey ?

I therefore design in this work to remove every difficulty, as far as my abilities will permit, in making proper observations to explain the literal meaning of the text, by reference to those other passages where the like word or sentence is used.

The method I shall pursue in this work will be as follows :

1st, The Hebrew Scriptures now offered to the public, will be printed with Points, and Musical Accents, with the English version on the opposite page; and such as cannot be sufficiently understood by the mere English translation, will be elucidated by critical Remarks and Illustrations, grounded on other passages in Scripture, where the like words and phrases occur. That this Edition of the Hebrew Scriptures may be more generally useful, it is not intended to say any thing in support or censure of the doctrines of any church or sect. The Scripture will be laid before them, and these will speak for them. selves; for however ingenious the glosses of men may be, yet they cannot alter the express meaning of the original; and therefore, that this Edition may contribute to the furtherance of the knowledge of the Word of God, it is intended that it shall be published in its own simple and unadorned form, leaving every person to judge for himself.

I shall not pretend to give the several meanings that many Hebrew texts may admit of, as that would be a most laborious task, and would leave the matter in great uncertainty; my view is only to make the Bible intelligible, by giving what appears to me the most genuine import of the text.

L. ALEXANDER,

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