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The Place Called Nahom


volgadon

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The footnote to 1 Nephi 16:34 reads " HEB probably "consolation," from verb naham, "be sorry, console oneself." "

That was what I used to consider the meaning to be, until today, when a thought came to me. What if we aren't dealing with the letter khet (?) but with the letter heh (?)? That is, an "h" sound. This changes the meaning from consolation to that of intense, vocal grief. We read in v. 13 that the daughters of Ishmael did not take the death of their father well but "did mourn exceedingly."

The root NHM (???) means a "roar." This is the sound lions make but when associated with humans the meaning changes to that of a loud moan. The Hebrew Bible uses it, among others, to express that very quality of intense grief and self-pity.

"And thou moan, when thine end cometh, when thy flesh and thy body are consumed,

-Proverbs 5:11."

"I am benumbed and sore crushed; I groan by reason of the moaning of my heart.

-Psalms 38:9."

It is interesting that the words translated as "groan" and "moan" are associated with the roaring and growling of lions.

It seems to me that the place-name Nahom is used by Nephi to indicate and anticipate what would follow in the next few verses.

There is one more scripture that is relevant to the point I am trying to make. On the surface it would seem to contradict what I am saying.

"Speak unto the house of Israel: Thus saith the Lord GOD: Behold, I will profane My sanctuary, the pride of your power, the desire of your eyes, and the longing of your soul; and your sons and your daughters whom ye have left behind shall fall by the sword. And ye shall do as I have done: ye shall not shave your upper lips, nor eat the bread of men; and your headdresses shall be upon your heads, and your shoes upon your feet; ye shall not make lamentation nor weep; but ye shall pine away in your iniquities, and moan one toward another.

-Ezekiel 24:21-23."

The reading here is difficult, and both the LXX and Targum Pseudo-Jonathan couldn't reconcile roaring with the prohibition on outward displays of mourning. They both translated "moan" as "comfort." Ezekiel's sign, however, is somewhat similar to David mourning for his son from Bathsheba before his death, but refraining from such outward displays after it. Ezekiel's message to the people is that they should not focus on the immense tragedy of the destruction of the temple, mourning and sorrowing for their relatives and for the loss of what symbolised their faith. Such mourning was appropriate before the destruction, while there was still a chance of avoiding it. What the exiles should focus on is their own iniquity.

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The footnote to 1 Nephi 16:34 reads " HEB probably "consolation," from verb naham, "be sorry, console oneself." "

That was what I used to consider the meaning to be, until today, when a thought came to me. What if we aren't dealing with the letter khet (?) but with the letter heh (?)? That is, an "h" sound. This changes the meaning from consolation to that of intense, vocal grief. We read in v. 13 that the daughters of Ishmael did not take the death of their father well but "did mourn exceedingly."

The root NHM (???) means a "roar." This is the sound lions make but when associated with humans the meaning changes to that of a loud moan. The Hebrew Bible uses it, among others, to express that very quality of intense grief and self-pity.

"And thou moan, when thine end cometh, when thy flesh and thy body are consumed,

-Proverbs 5:11."

"I am benumbed and sore crushed; I groan by reason of the moaning of my heart.

-Psalms 38:9."

It is interesting that the words translated as "groan" and "moan" are associated with the roaring and growling of lions.

It seems to me that the place-name Nahom is used by Nephi to indicate and anticipate what would follow in the next few verses.

There is one more scripture that is relevant to the point I am trying to make. On the surface it would seem to contradict what I am saying.

"Speak unto the house of Israel: Thus saith the Lord GOD: Behold, I will profane My sanctuary, the pride of your power, the desire of your eyes, and the longing of your soul; and your sons and your daughters whom ye have left behind shall fall by the sword. And ye shall do as I have done: ye shall not shave your upper lips, nor eat the bread of men; and your headdresses shall be upon your heads, and your shoes upon your feet; ye shall not make lamentation nor weep; but ye shall pine away in your iniquities, and moan one toward another.

-Ezekiel 24:21-23."

The reading here is difficult, and both the LXX and Targum Pseudo-Jonathan couldn't reconcile roaring with the prohibition on outward displays of mourning. They both translated "moan" as "comfort." Ezekiel's sign, however, is somewhat similar to David mourning for his son from Bathsheba before his death, but refraining from such outward displays after it. Ezekiel's message to the people is that they should not focus on the immense tragedy of the destruction of the temple, mourning and sorrowing for their relatives and for the loss of what symbolised their faith. Such mourning was appropriate before the destruction, while there was still a chance of avoiding it. What the exiles should focus on is their own iniquity.

This is an interesting idea. In a similar vein I've wondered if Lehi might be Lehi rather than Le?i.

On the other hand, we do have Capernaum in Hebrew as Kepar Na?um, which might be related as well.

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This is an interesting idea. In a similar vein I've wondered if Lehi might be Lehi rather than Le?i.

On the other hand, we do have Capernaum in Hebrew as Kepar Na?um, which might be related as well.

It might be Lehi, would have to look intot that more.

I'm not arguing that Na?om is an impossible etymology, merely that given Nephi's use of the name Nahom fits the context better. There wasn't much comforting done at Nahom. Nephi here is showing the reader what to expect, IMHO.

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I was going to respond that Lekh Lekha is the title of the parashah beginning with God's command to Abraham to pack up and leave his home.

Yup. I was barking up the wrong tree there. Did you get a chance to look at my post on "heh" Lehi in the other thread?

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