Friday, August 29, 2008

The Acrostics (119)

Psalm 119 is the most tightly woven micro recurrence structure in the whole Bible. A year ago July I first finished my draft of this psalm. [A year later, I am working though it again letter by letter - see the sidebar - these are, with the letters in Ruth, a study of grammar.] Other posts illustrating my early analysis are here, here, here, here, here, and here. This image illustrates all the recurring words in gory color.

I am translating Torah as teaching rather than law. Law is misleading to the postmodern. Teaching is not impersonal but engaging and is never independent of the teacher. They shall all be taught by God. And I am distinguishing word DBR from word IMRH since the Psalmist clearly distinguishes these two. IMRH I have translated as promise.

My initial letters are arbitrary. I didn't have the advantage of vav - the Hebrew letter that made one set of 8 verses very easy. There is no word in Hebrew that begins with vav, but it can be the first letter of any word! I used the Latin W for V.

I have largely followed the alef-bet, but I refused zayin and doubled the use of yod - in this creative patch, I thought a double yod would have symbolic value. (More likely, it just happened.) I also have used C for Chet, F for kaf, and S three times for samech, tsade, and shin/sin. For the glottal stops, Aleph is A and Ayin is I. And of course I typed T twice too.

Psalm 119
All joy for those who are the complete of the way
who walk in the teaching of יְהוָה
All joy for those observing his testimonies
they seek him with their whole heart
Also they do no injustice
they walk in his ways
And you commanded your precepts
to keep in full
Ah that my ways were directed
to keep your statutes
And then I would not be ashamed
to gaze on all your commandments
And I will praise you with an upright heart
when I learn the judgments of your righteousness
And I will keep your statutes
you will not forsake me in full perpetuity
But how will a youth cleanse his path
to keep it for your word?
By all my heart I have sought you
do not let me stray from your commandments
By my heart I have hid your promise
in order that I will not sin against you
Blessed are you יְהוָה
teach me your statutes
By my lips I have declared
all the judgments of your mouth
By the way of your testimonies
I have rejoiced more than all sufficiency
By your precepts I will muse
and I will look to your paths
By your statutes I will delight
nor will I forget your word
Grow your servant
and I will live and keep your word
Give sight to my eyes
I will see wonders in your teaching
Guest I am on the earth
do not hide from me your commandments
Ground down is my being
for longing at all times for your judgments
Giving rebuke, you have cursed the presumptuous
erring from your commandments
Get from me ignominy and contempt
for I have observed your testimonies
Great princes sat and spoke against me
your servant will meditate on your statutes
Grand are your testimonies and my delight
they are my human counsels
Dust-cleaved is my being
give me life by your word
Declared have I my ways and you heard me
teach me your statutes
Direct my discernment in the way of your precepts
and I will meditate on your wonderful works
Drips my being with grief
strengthen me according to your word
Deceitful way remove from me
and grace me with your teaching
Deliberated have I a way of faith
I have agreed with your judgments
Determined I cleave to your testimonies
יְהוָה do not put me to shame
Direct by your commandments I will run
for you enlarge my heart
Help me learn יְהוָה the way of your statutes
and I will observe with consequence
Have me understand and I will observe your teaching
and I will keep it with a whole heart
Have me go in the pathway of your commandments
for I have delighted in them
Hearten me to your testimonies
and not to unjust profit
Hide my eyes from gazing on emptiness
give me life in your way
Hold to your servant your promise
which is to your fear
Hide my reproach that I have feared
for your judgments are good
Here I have longed for your precepts
in your righteousness give me life
Well come to me is your steadfast love יְהוָה
your salvation because of your promise
Wherewith I will answer a word to one reproaching me
for I trust in your word
Word of truth do not remove from my mouth utterly
for I have hoped in your judgments
Watch over your teaching I will
continually to the age and for ever
Walk in maturity I will
for I have sought your precepts
Words of your testimonies before kings I will have
and I will not be ashamed
Wherefore my delight will be in your commandments
which I have loved
Wave my hands I will to your commandments which I have loved
and I will meditate on your statutes
You remember a word to your servant
by which you give me hope
Yes - this word is my comfort in my trouble
for your promise gives me life
Yet the presumptuous hold me in great derision
I have not fallen away from your teaching
Your judgments I bring to presence from of old יְהוָה
and I comfort myself
Yang of fire grasps me
from the wicked forsaking your teaching
Yin of songs your statutes have become to me
in the house of my lifetime
Your name I have remembered in the night יְהוָה
I have kept your teaching
You are mine
for I have observed your precepts
Chosen portion, mine you are יְהוָה
I have vowed to keep your word
Craved have I your presence with all my heart
have mercy on me remembering your promise
Considered have I my ways
and turned my feet to your testimonies
Came quickly I did
and I would not delay to keep your commandments
Companies of the wicked robbed me
I have not ignored your teaching
Come midnight I arise to give thanks to you
for the judgments of your righteousness
Companion am I to all who fear you
and are keepers of your precepts
Covenant mercy yours, יְהוָה, has filled the earth
you will teach me your statutes
Too well you have dealt with your servant
יְהוָה through your word
Teach me good taste and discernment
for I have believed in your commandments
Time it was I was afflicted going astray
but you have guarded me in your promise
Too good are you and doing good
teach me your statutes
Those proud ones smear a lie against me
with a whole heart I will observe your precepts
Their heart is gross as fat
I will delight in your teaching
`Tis good for me that I was afflicted
so I will learn your statutes
The law of your mouth is better to me
than thousands of gold and silver
Your hands have made me and established me
give me understanding and I will teach your commandments
Yes - those fearing you when they see me will be glad
for I have hoped for in your word
Yet I know יְהוָה that your judgments are righteous
and in faithfulness you afflicted me
You will let, I pray, your steadfast mercy strengthen me
by your promise to your servant
You will come to me in your tender love and I will live
for your teaching is my delight
Yon proud will be shamed for the deceit they dealt me
for myself, I will meditate on your precepts
You will let those who fear you turn to me
 and those knowing your testimonies
Yea, let my heart be complete in your statutes
so I will not be ashamed
Faints my being for your salvation
I have hoped in your word
Faint my eyes for your promise
saying continually when will you comfort me
For I have become like a bottle holding vapor
I have not forgotten your statutes
For how are the days of your servant
when will you do judgment against my persecutors
For me those proud ones dig pits
not of your teaching
Faithful are all your commandments
in falsehood they persecute me - help me
For scarcely they consume me in the earth
but I do not leave your precepts
For your loving kindness let me live
and I will keep the testimony of your mouth for ever
יְהוָה (LORD) for ever your word
is set in heaven
Living from generation to generation is your faithfulness
you established earth and she stands by your judgments
Lo they stand this day
for they all are your servants
Love, unless your teaching is my delight
then I have perished in my trouble
Let me never forget your precepts
for in them you have made me live
Love, to you I belong, save me
for I have sought your precepts
Lying in wait for me to destroy me are the wicked
I will be attentive to your testimonies
Lo, I saw an end to all perfection
your commandments are wide and great
My - how I love your teaching
it is my meditation every day
Me you make wiser than my enemies by your commandments
for they are mine in all time
Midst all my teachers I have insight
for your testimonies are my meditation
More than the aged I have diligence
for I have observed your precepts
Missing every path of evil I have restrained my feet
so that I will keep your word
Mid your judgments I have not turned aside
for you have taught me
More than sweet to my palate
your promise as honey to my mouth
Minding your precepts I have diligence
therefore I have hated every path of a lie
Nigh a lamp to my feet is your word
as light to my path
Now I have sworn and I will do it
to guard the judgments of your righteousness
Near to much trouble am I יְהוָה
give me life by your word
Now please accept יְהוָה the gifts of my mouth
and teach me your judgments
Now my being is in my hand continually
and I have not forgotten your teaching
Netted the wicked a snare for me
but I did not depart from your precepts
Near are your testimonies, my inheritance for ever
for they are the rejoicing of my heart
Nuanced have I my heart in doing your statutes
for ever to their purpose
Schismatics I hate
and I have loved your teaching
Secret mine and my shield are you
I have hoped in your word
Separate from me, you evildoers
for I will observe the commandments of my God
Support me for your promise so I will live
let me not be ashamed of my hope
Sustain me and I will be saved
and I will look to your statutes continually
Suspended have you all who stray from your statutes
for falsehood is their deceit
Swill you eradicated all the wicked of the earth
therefore I have loved your testimonies
Shivers from your dread my flesh
and I fear your judgments
I have dealt judgment and righteousness
do not leave me to those oppressing me
Insure your servant for good
the proud will not oppress me
I - I - my eyes - faint for your salvation
and for the promise of your righteousness
I ask you to deal with your servant according to your mercy
and teach me your statutes
I am your servant, let me understand
that I may know your testimonies
It is time to work for you יְהוָה
they have frustrated your teaching
I have loved your commandments therefore
above gold and fine gold
Indeed all your precepts I find agreeable
I hate every path of deceit
Plenty of wonders are your testimonies
therefore my being will observe them
Penetration of your words gives light
making wise the simple
Part I my mouth and sigh heavily
for my desire is in your commandments
Put your face to me and have mercy on me
for judgment to those loving your name
Place my steps in your promise
and do not let any iniquity have grasp over me
Preserve me from the oppression of a human
and I will keep your precepts
Pyre your face on your servant
and teach me Oh! your statutes
Pouring streams descend from my eyes
that they do not keep your teaching
So just you are יְהוָה
and your judgments are straightforward
Set you have the righteousness of your testimonies
and great faithfulness
Struck me out did my zeal
for my troublers forgot your words
Smeltered greatly is your promise
and your servant loves it
Small am I and of no account
I have not forgotten your precepts
Saving righteousness - yours - is righteousness for ever
and your teaching is truth
Strain and struggle stress me
your commandments are my delight
Such righteousness of your testimonies is everlasting
let me understand and I will live
Queried I with a whole heart, hear me יְהוָה
I will observe your statutes
Queried I you, save me
and I will keep your testimonies
Quested I in a twilight hour and I cried out
I wait on your word
Quested my eyes in the night watches
to meditate on your promise
Quest of mine, hear for your loving kindness יְהוָה
give me life by your judgments
Quite near are those following mischief
they are far from your teaching
Quite near are you יְהוָה
and all your commandments are truth
Quite from of old I knew about your testimonies
for you established them from everlasting
Regard my affliction and deliver me
for I do not forget your teaching
Reason my reason and redeem me
give me life in your promise
Remote is salvation from the wicked
for they do not seek your statutes
Right and great are your mercies יְהוָה
for your judgments give me life
Running after me are my many troublers
I do not waver from your testimonies
Regarded I transgressors and I was distressed
that they disregard your promise
Regard for your precepts I love יְהוָה
give me life in your loving kindness
Right away your word is truth
and every judgment of your righteousness is for ever
Sultans persecute me for nothing
but my heart stands in awe from your word
Singing I sing for your promise
as finding great booty
Scandal I hate and abhor
I love your teaching
Seven times a day do I praise you
for the judgments of your righteousness
Such great peace to those loving your teaching
and there is no stumbling for them
Steadfast is my hope in your salvation יְהוָה
and I have done your commandments
Savors my being your testimonies
and I love them greatly
So I keep your precepts and your testimonies
for all my ways are before you
To your presence let my cry come near יְהוָה
in your word give me understanding
To your presence let my supplication come
deliver me in your promise
Tumble will my lips with praise
for you have taught me your statutes
Testify will my tongue of your promise
for all your commandments are righteous
There your hand will be to help me
for I have chosen your precepts
To your salvation I have longed to come יְהוָה
and your teaching is my delight
To live let my being and it will praise you
and you will help me from your judgments
Time and again I am straying like a sheep that has perished
seek your servant for I do not forget your commandments

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