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Does Job 37:18 support a flat earth theory?

Posted by Stephen Pidgeon on Sunday, July 9, 2017 at 12:00 AM

 

We begin with the verse found in Iyov (Job):

Iyov (Job) 37:18
Have you with him spread out the sky, which is strong, and as a molten looking glass?

Now, let’s take a look at the Hebrew (with transliteration).

Job 37:18 תרקיע (ha’raqia)  עמו (imu)  לשׁחקים (l’shachaqiym)  חזקים (chazaqiym)  כראי (k’rehee)  מוצק׃ (m’yatsaq). 

Let us look separately at each term:

תרקיע (ha’raqia) -  (Strong’s H7554) râqa‛is the primitive root, which means in one application

to pound the earth (as a sign of passion).  By analogy the word is interpreted as meaning to expand (by hammering) and by implication to overlay (with thin sheets of metal): - beat, make broad, spread abroad (forth, over, out, into plates), stamp, stretch.

Of course, this word begins with a prefix (ha) implying the word the.  So, we have choices:

The pounding out

The expanding 

The overlaying 

The making broad

The spreading abroad

The stretching 

עמו (imu) (Strong’s H5973) ‛im is an adverb or preposition, with (that is, in conjunction with), in varied applications; specifically equally with; often with prepositional prefix (and then usually unrepresented in English), but it also means accompanying, against, etc.   

The pounding out with

The expanding with

The overlaying with

The making broad with

The spreading abroad with

The stretching with

לשׁחקים (l’shachaqiym) (Strong’s H7834) from the word shachaq which means either a powder (as beaten small); or by analogy a thin vapor; or by extension the firmament, which could be a cloud, small dust, heaven, or the sky. In this case, however, we have the masculine plural form of the word.  So, the word could mean powders, thin vapors, clouds, dust, heavens, or the skies.

Now, some of your choices are:

The pounding out with powders

The pounding out with thin vapors

The pounding out with the firmament

The expanding with powders

The expanding with thin vapors

The expanding with the firmament

The overlaying with powders

The overlaying with thin vapors

The overlaying with the firmament

חזקים (chazaqiym) (Strong’s H2389) châzâq, meaning strong, hard, bold, violent, impudent, loud, mighty, etc. Again, in this case, we have the masculine plural.  Where does that take us? Could it be many strengths?  Such an idea may be encapsulated in the notion of the word powerful. Let’s consider a few more words and see. I will reduce our example to exemplify my position here, in support of an atmosphere as it is currently understood:

כראי (k’rehee) (Strong’s H7209) means simply a mirror or looking glass.

מוצק (m’yatsaq) (Strong’s H3332) yâtsaq

A primitive root; properly to pour out (transitively or intransitively); by implication to melt or cast as metal; by extension to place firmly, to stiffen or grow hard: - cast, cleave fast, be (as) firm, grow, be hard, lay out, molten, overflow, pour (out), run out, set down, stedfast.

In review, one thing we can determine is that the use of the phrase molten looking glass is not and cannot be accurate, because the term yatsaq means more like hardening metal from a molten source.  You can see how the pouring out of molten metal into a hardened form is the more accurate meaning of the term yatsaq

The overlaying with thin vapors, poured out like a powerful looking glass.

The overlaying with thin vapors are powerful and poured out like a looking glass.

In the context of the passage, we find a more appropriate reading as follows:

Iyov (Job) 37:18
Have you stretched out the thin vapors with power, poured out like a looking glass?

When we consider the looking glass or mirror, take a look a Pa’al’s reference:

Qorintiym Ri’shon (1 Corinthians) 13:11-12
When I was a child, I spoke as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things. 12 For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known.

Does this mean that there is glass dome over the earth, through which we are able to see the crumbling powder stretched out in the heavens?

Let’s take a look at the Greek in this instance for the word glass.  Here we find the word esoptron (ἔσοπτρον) (Strong's G2072), which is from G1519 and a presumed derivative of G3700, and which means a mirror (for looking into).  In the last instance, it is interpreted as glass.  

Let’s take a moment now to consider what it is that both Iyov and Pa’al are telling us.  Are we missing something in our metaphysical view of creation? I think we are, and so I will propose something new for you to consider.  But first, two new interpretations of this passage.  First we will add the words looking glass instead of the word glass.  Second, the word through will be modified to read by means of, which is a consistent use of the Greek word dia (διά) Strong's G 1223.

Qorintiym Ri’shon (1 Corinthians) 13:11-12
When I was a child, I spoke as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things. 12 For now we see by means of a looking glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known.

Now consider that which we see on the outside is that which we also see on the inside.  That in fact the macro is the micro, and the micro is the macro.  That which we see in the electron microscope is that which we see in deep space telescope; that creation is a manifold which circles back on itself.  That which we perceive to be millions of light years away, may actually be microscopic distances, and the atoms that we smash may be solar systems in a distant galaxy.

I will leave it as something to consider. 

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