Friday, November 18, 2016

Isaiah 31

A test for a format. What if we could see the first note in text, would it help understand inter verse connections?

Three verses in this short chapter begin on a note other than the tonic. The possible notes are c, d, e, f, g, A, B, C. Where the c is middle c and the C is an octave above. (In XML terms, octave 3 is expressed in lower case letters, and octave 4 is in upper case.)

My thesis is that generally, if a verse begins on a note other than the tonic e, then that verse opening is telling us something special, perhaps a connection to a previous verse, or to some other known feature in the passage at hand. Four books of the Bible begin on a note other than the tonic. Deuteronomy and the three books of Truth, the poetry books, Psalms, Proverbs, and Job. The message there is that these books relate to everything that has gone before.

So my suggestion for the verses below is that verse 1 is somehow related to the prior chapter. Verse 4 is a consequence of verse 3. Verse 6 stands out as the only verse beginning with an ornament and also the only verse having no rest on the subdominant. Perhaps it is a central message. And verse 7 a dramatic continuation after the aside of verse 6. Because I have not yet read the way that the composer has used the music in prior chapters, these guesses are provisional.

And this first note, the minimum, and the maximum, are merely a shorthand to say that something is going on in the music. One still has to hear the music.

Isaiah 31 Fn Min Max Syl
ה֣וֹי הַיֹּרְדִ֤ים מִצְרַ֙יִם֙ לְעֶזְרָ֔ה עַל־סוּסִ֖ים יִשָּׁעֵ֑נוּ
וַיִּבְטְח֨וּ עַל־רֶ֜כֶב כִּ֣י רָ֗ב וְעַ֤ל פָּֽרָשִׁים֙ כִּֽי־עָצְמ֣וּ מְאֹ֔ד וְלֹ֤א שָׁעוּ֙ עַל־קְד֣וֹשׁ יִשְׂרָאֵ֔ל וְאֶת־יְהוָ֖ה לֹ֥א דָרָֽשׁוּ
1 B Alas for those who go down to Egypt for help. On horses they lean,
and they trust in chariot for abundance, and in cavalry for they are very numerous, but they do not look on the Holy One of Israel, and Yahweh they do not search out.
3e 4C 17
37
וְגַם־ה֤וּא חָכָם֙ וַיָּ֣בֵא רָ֔ע וְאֶת־דְּבָרָ֖יו לֹ֣א הֵסִ֑יר
וְקָם֙ עַל־בֵּ֣ית מְרֵעִ֔ים וְעַל־עֶזְרַ֖ת פֹּ֥עֲלֵי אָֽוֶן
2 And moreover he is wise and brings evil, and his words he has not put aside,
but will arise over the house of evildoers, and over the help of workers of mischief.
3e 4C 17
16
וּמִצְרַ֤יִם אָדָם֙ וְֽלֹא־אֵ֔ל וְסוּסֵיהֶ֥ם בָּשָׂ֖ר וְלֹא־ר֑וּחַ
וַֽיהוָ֞ה יַטֶּ֣ה יָד֗וֹ וְכָשַׁ֤ל עוֹזֵר֙ וְנָפַ֣ל עָזֻ֔ר וְיַחְדָּ֖ו כֻּלָּ֥ם יִכְלָיֽוּן
3 And Egyptians are human and not God, and their horses flesh and not spirit,
and Yahweh will stretch out his hand, and helper will stumble, and the one helped will fall, and they together, all of them, will be consumed.
3e 4C 17
24
כִּ֣י כֹ֣ה אָֽמַר־יְהוָ֣ה ׀ אֵלַ֡י כַּאֲשֶׁ֣ר יֶהְגֶּה֩ הָאַרְיֵ֨ה וְהַכְּפִ֜יר עַל־טַרְפּ֗וֹ אֲשֶׁ֨ר יִקָּרֵ֤א עָלָיו֙ מְלֹ֣א רֹעִ֔ים מִקּוֹלָם֙ לֹ֣א יֵחָ֔ת וּמֵֽהֲמוֹנָ֖ם לֹ֣א יַֽעֲנֶ֑ה
כֵּ֗ן יֵרֵד֙ יְהוָ֣ה צְבָא֔וֹת לִצְבֹּ֥א עַל־הַר־צִיּ֖וֹן וְעַל־גִּבְעָתָֽהּ
4 B Because thus says Yahweh to me, As meditates the lion, or the cub over its prey, when a full complement of shepherds calls against it, from their voice he is not dismayed, nor from their tumult is he afflicted,
so Yahweh of hosts will come down to the host on the hill of Zion, and over its hillock.
3e 4C 48
19
כְּצִפֳּרִ֣ים עָפ֔וֹת כֵּ֗ן יָגֵ֛ן יְהוָ֥ה צְבָא֖וֹת עַל־יְרֽוּשָׁלִָ֑ם
גָּנ֥וֹן וְהִצִּ֖יל פָּסֹ֥חַ וְהִמְלִֽיט
5 As birds flying, so Yahweh of hosts will defend over Jerusalem.
Defending, also he will deliver one that is lame and let it escape.
3d 4B 19
11
שׁ֗וּבוּ לַאֲשֶׁ֛ר הֶעְמִ֥יקוּ סָרָ֖ה בְּנֵ֥י יִשְׂרָאֵֽל 6
Turn to whom the children of Israel are in deep revolt. 3d 3g 15
כִּ֚י בַּיּ֣וֹם הַה֔וּא יִמְאָס֗וּן אִ֚ישׁ אֱלִילֵ֣י כַסְפּ֔וֹ וֶאֱלִילֵ֖י זְהָב֑וֹ
אֲשֶׁ֨ר עָשׂ֥וּ לָכֶ֛ם יְדֵיכֶ֖ם חֵֽטְא
7 C For in that day, each will refuse its good for nothing silver and its good for nothing gold,
that your hands made for yourselves to sin.
3d 4C 21
10
וְנָפַ֤ל אַשּׁוּר֙ בְּחֶ֣רֶב לֹא־אִ֔ישׁ וְחֶ֥רֶב לֹֽא־אָדָ֖ם תֹּֽאכֲלֶ֑נּוּ
וְנָ֥ס לוֹ֙ מִפְּנֵי־חֶ֔רֶב וּבַחוּרָ֖יו לָמַ֥ס יִהְיֽוּ
8 And Ashur will fall by the sword, not of a man, and a sword not of a human, will devour him.
He will withdraw for himself in the face of a sword, and his chosen ones will be in forced service.
3e 4C 19
14
וְסַלְעוֹ֙ מִמָּג֣וֹר יַֽעֲב֔וֹר וְחַתּ֥וּ מִנֵּ֖ס שָׂרָ֑יו
נְאֻם־יְהוָ֗ה אֲשֶׁר־א֥וּר לוֹ֙ בְּצִיּ֔וֹן וְתַנּ֥וּר ל֖וֹ בִּירוּשָׁלִָֽם
9 And his cliff from terror will pass away, and his nobles will be dismayed from a standard.
An oracle of Yahweh, whose light is in Zion and whose oven is in Jerusalem.
3e 4B 16
19


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