Monday, May 12, 2008

How a water fountain can lie

Ever been really, really thirsty, and spotted a water fountain? You go to the fountain, press the button, and ... well, nothing happens. The fountain is broken, disconnected, whatever. The fountain lied to you. It promised something it didn't give.

I mentioned yesterday the archaic English word "leasing," used in Psalms 4 and 5 in the AV, translating the Hebrew kazabh. The general meaning is loose, lying, or deceitful.

Isaiah 58.11 is an interesting use of kazabh. The thrust of the verse is the same as our water fountain above, and it's a picture of a spring in the desert, and a traveler who comes upon the spring, and the spring has no water. It lies, deceives, tells us something's there that's not.

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