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On Devils and Demons

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Paul Younanmoderator

 
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On Devils and Demons

May-02-2001 at 05:09 PM (UTC+3 Nineveh, Assyria)

Last edited by Paul Younan on May-02-2001 at 05:09 PM (CT)

Shlama Akhi Stephen,

Here's an interesting set of questions to ponder.

Let's use this thread to do a word studies on the following 2 Aramaic terms, and the implications of their relationship to Hebrew/Semitic understanding of theology, as well as the impact this has on the primacy debate.

In Aramaic, and not Greek, there are actually two words that mean "Demon." Those words are:


  • 0d04 (#20347, "Shee-dee"), the Hebrew cognate is Dw (Strong's #7700, "Shade") used only in Deuteronomy 32:17 and Psalms 106:37
  • 0wyd (#4367, "Day-wa")

Both Aramaic and Hebrew use the term 0n=s (#14215, "Satana" - "Adversary") to refer to the "prince of demons" himself.

Please notice the Lexical Concordance entries for all three of these words (along with their variants, using the same words but in a Lexeme search.)

Also, find the same verses, but in the Greek Interlinear found at crosswalk.com

When you compare, you will notice that the Greek always translates both terms as "Daimnion."

Now, for the initial questions on this thread:


  • What is the difference between these 2 Aramaic words for "demon?"
  • Why do the authors of the NT use BOTH of them? (notice the usage of both in Luqa, both in Matti, both in Marqus, etc.)
  • If the Peshitta is based on the Greek, why does it sometimes translate "Daimnion" as "Shee-dee" and other times as "Day-wa"? In other words, since when does a translation become more specific than the original?


Fk^rwbw 0ml4

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Samuel
 
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1. RE: On Devils and Demons

May-02-2001 at 05:34 AM (UTC+3 Nineveh, Assyria)

In reply to message #0
 
The word sheid in Hebrew or sheida in aramaic comes from the Assyrian word Shedu, meaning a protecting spirit,esp. of bull-colossus.In the Bible such belief in ancestor protecting spirits is idolatry and forbiden by Yahweh in contrast to the people around Israel at that time. Latter in the intertestinal pewriod the word came to mean evil spirits or as we say today demons. The Greek word Daimion means diety or god, something worshiped in place of Yahweh and forbiden to Christians as demon worship of evil spirits. the word Shadad in Hebrew related means deal vilently with, despoil,devastate,ruin. Perhaps this semetic word is where the idea of sheida being evil spirits came into being. The Greek word damonion gives us no clue how the word for diety came to mean evil spirits. this may show the superiority of the Aramaic word in the New Testament as the only testimony to the origins of this word being shedu in the akkadian language of the ancient Assyrians which was adopted to in both the Hebrewq and aramaic language. All three tongues are Northern semetic and have simmilar grammar as well.My source is Brown, Briggs,and Driver's Hebrew English Lexicon word #'s 7700, and 7703 on pages 993.994. Shlama WBerkhata Sam

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John Marucci
 
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2. RE: On Devils and Demons

May-03-2001 at 05:34 AM (UTC+3 Nineveh, Assyria)

In reply to message #0
 
Akhi Paul,

According to scholars 0wyd comes from the Persian-Avestian word "dew," a Zoroastrian demon. While 0d04 is the Semitic word for demon, the ancient Assyrian term is "shedu." What, if any, the distinction between 0d04 and 0wyd was in first century Jewish Aramaic and early Christian Aramaic, my sources don't say.

John Marucci

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3. RE: On Devils and Demons

May-03-2001 at 10:34 AM (UTC+3 Nineveh, Assyria)

In reply to message #2
 
Akhi Khulon:
Classical and Old Testament useage of the Greek word daimon denotes superhuman power , god, destinty, and demon. In popular belief the world was full of demons, beings between gods and humans that could be appeased or controlled by magic, spells, and incantations. they were first of all spirits of the dead,esp. the unburied, then ghosts that could apear in varying forms(esp. at night). Demons lived in the air near the earth. Their work could be seen in the disasters and miseries of human fate. Through natural catastrophies they shook the cosmos. Above all they made people sick or insane. In some systems of helenistic philosophy , whole hirarchies of demons were drawn up. Philo considered angels and demons to be of the same nature, but angels kept their distence from the earth. Damonion is the adjective derived from damion and is used as a noun meaning the divine. It expresses that which lies out side human capacity. In popular belief daimonion was used as a diminutive of daimon.
From the NIV Theological Dictionary of new Testament Words (Abriged) by Veryln D. Verbrugge page 278 copy righted 2000. Shlama W'Berkhata Sam

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4. The difference........

May-03-2001 at 12:50 PM (UTC+3 Nineveh, Assyria)

In reply to message #2
 
Shlama Akhi John,

Even today in our modern vernacular Aramaic dialects, the distinction is still made between these terms, many times in interesting ways.

First, when we want to call someone "crazy" we call them a
0nd04, which is an adjective derived from 0d04.

If we want to call someone "demon-possessed", we say 0nwyd.

This seems to have its origin in how the terms are used in the Peshitta.

Notice that most of the time, with only a couple of exceptions, the term 0d04 is used in the Peshitta NT to describe a certain type of possession with psychological/mental manifestations.

Whereas, with 0wyd the usage is more general, many times manifesting itself physically in other ways such as dumbness, muteness, etc.

It would seem that 0d04 is a more specific type of demon that affects the possessed in a more psychological/mental way. A 0d04 is a special kind of 0wyd.

Also, Maran Eshoa seems to imply that certain types of demons (0d04) are harder to expel than others (cf. Matti 17:21)

What this means is that the Peshitta Aramaic NT is more specific than the Greek, which does not differentiate between the two types.

Also interesting, from a primacy standpoint, is that Matti, for instance, uses both terms.

How then can the Peshitta terms be a translation of the Greek word for demon, which is only 1 term?

This is what I find most interesting about this example. Apart from the theology (actually, demonology) that is clarified, it is hard to imagine going from the vague Greek "daimonion" to
0d04 and 0wyd, but it is easy to imagine the other way around.


Fk^rwbw 0ml4

Peshitta.org

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John Marucci
 
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5. RE: The difference........

May-03-2001 at 03:48 PM (UTC+3 Nineveh, Assyria)

In reply to message #4
 
Akhi Paul,

That's a very interesting analysis, and your quite right about the finer distinctions of the Peshitta pointing to its primacy over Greek. One problem with this path of investigation, however, is the lack of published material which the community of Biblical scholars will accept. Their focus is almost entirely in the lexical grammatical direction and it is very difficult to pin down the precise meaning of a word in a specific context with their material. That gives you a
great advantage in this area.

John Marucci

P. S.

What happened to the Mac version of the Hebrew font I sent you? I don't see it anywhere on your site.

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Paul Younanmoderator

 
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6. RE: The difference........

May-03-2001 at 04:12 PM (UTC+3 Nineveh, Assyria)

In reply to message #5
 
Shlama Akhi John,

Thanks for the reply, and again for the Mac version of the Hebrew font.

I do plan on putting it up very soon (hopefully tonight.) I am writing from work, as my time at home is very limited because of the help I give my wife with our newborn.

The only time I have to "work" on the website is at work! That'll all change in time, of course, when Kaylen is a little older.

Thanks for reminding me, though. I'd also like, eventually, to find the "standard" Greek font so we can use that on this site as well.

By the way, you mentioned in an email that you were going to post some things on the web, do you have a website now?


Fk^rwbw 0ml4

Peshitta.org

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John Marucci
 
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7. RE: The difference........

May-03-2001 at 10:15 PM (UTC+3 Nineveh, Assyria)

In reply to message #6
 
Akhi Paul,

Thanks for updating me on the situation. I fully appreciate the needs of your family coming first. I'm sure your wife is pleased with your support, and that you are finding it very rewarding.

As for my web site, I have the space reserved from my service provider and am building the site on my hard drive now. Alaha willing, I should be on-line in a few weeks.

Regarding a Greek font, there are already a number of free fonts available for both Windows and Macintosh. If you would like, I will look around and see if I can find something suitable to submit to you.

Alaha bless you and your family,
John Marucci

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James_Trimm
 
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8. RE: On Devils and Demons

May-03-2001 at 10:34 PM (UTC+3 Nineveh, Assyria)

In reply to message #0
 

>In Aramaic, and not Greek, there
>are actually two words that
>mean "Demon." Those words
>are:
>
>


    >
  • 0d04 (#20347,
    >"Shee-dee"), the Hebrew cognate is
    >Dw (Strong's #7700,
    >"Shade") used only in Deuteronomy
    >32:17 and Psalms 106:37
    >
  • 0wyd (#4367,
    >"Day-wa")
    >

>


Shlama,

Sorry I have been away from the list lately I have been busy.

Yes this is an important point which I made note of in the introduction to the HRV. In the HRV I rendered SHAD with SHAD/SHADIM and DAY-WA with
"devil" so as to distinguish the two.

Trimm

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9. RE: On Devils and Demons

May-03-2001 at 11:26 PM (UTC+3 Nineveh, Assyria)

In reply to message #0
 
There are also two words for "cross" and two words for "Gospel" in the Aramaic where the Greek only uses one word for these... funny how that works huh?

Trimm

> Last edited
>by Paul Younan on May-02-2001
>at 05:09 PM (CT)

>
>Shlama Akhi Stephen,
>
>Here's an interesting set of questions
>to ponder.
>
>Let's use this thread to do
>a word studies on the
>following 2 Aramaic terms, and
>the implications of their relationship
>to Hebrew/Semitic understanding of theology,
>as well as the impact
>this has on the primacy
>debate.
>
>In Aramaic, and not Greek, there
>are actually two words that
>mean "Demon." Those words
>are:
>
>


    >
  • 0d04 (#20347,
    >"Shee-dee"), the Hebrew cognate is
    >Dw (Strong's #7700,
    >"Shade") used only in Deuteronomy
    >32:17 and Psalms 106:37
    >
  • 0wyd (#4367,
    >"Day-wa")
    >

>
>Both Aramaic and Hebrew use the
>term 0n=s
>(#14215, "Satana" - "Adversary") to
>refer to the "prince of
>demons" himself.
>
>Please notice the Lexical Concordance entries
>for all three of these
>words (along with their variants,
>using the same words but
>in a Lexeme search.)
>
>Also, find the same verses, but
>in the Greek Interlinear found
>at crosswalk.com
>
>When you compare, you will notice
>that the Greek always translates
>both terms as "Daimnion."
>
>Now, for the initial questions on
>this thread:
>
>

    >
  • What is the difference
    >between these 2 Aramaic words
    >for "demon?"
    >
  • Why do the authors
    >of the NT use BOTH
    >of them? (notice the usage
    >of both in Luqa, both
    >in Matti, both in Marqus,
    >etc.)
    >
  • If the Peshitta is
    >based on the Greek, why
    >does it sometimes translate "Daimnion"
    >as "Shee-dee" and other times
    >as "Day-wa"? In other
    >words, since when does a
    >translation become more specific than
    >the original?
    >

>
>
>
>
>
>
>Fk^rwbw 0ml4
>


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Samuel
 
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10. RE: On Devils and Demons

May-04-2001 at 10:57 PM (UTC+3 Nineveh, Assyria)

In reply to message #9
 
Akhi Khulon:
In the International Dictionary of the Old Testestament Theology & Exegesis the word Demon has what follows:
OT Sheid occurs in the plural and only 2x (Deut.32:17;Ps.106:37). The typical translation is demons(NIV,NASB), but other nuanced variations exist(powerless spirit,KJV). In both instances the Sheidis a recipent of forbiden sacrifice: "They sacrificed to demons, which are not God-gods they had not known, gods that recently appeared, gods your fathers did not fear"(Deut. 323:17). It is also recorded that these sacrifices consisted of human or child sacrifice: " They sacrificed their sons and their daughters to demons" (Ps.106:37). Such pagan idolatry has been connected with the Babylonian Shedu; "a supernatural protective power for whose presence the gods were evoked" (TWOT 2:906). It has also been suggested that such a demon could have represented "personal vitality or sexual potency"(TWOT 2:906). Kaufmann observes, "One cannot help but notice the paucity of references to the demonic in the Old Testament and even where it occurs it is demythologized. Good and evil are in the moral, not the metaphysical, sphere"(65,n.1). He futher explains, "When the gods of the nations are caled Shedim it is not meant that they are evil spirits, but that they are insubstantial shades, no gods,' with neither divine nor demonic function"(ibid.). Shlama W'Berkhata , Sam Just thought that was an interesting article about the word Sheid. #H8717
in K&G Exhustive Concordance. by M.V. Pelt/W.C. Kaiser, Jr.

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Andrew Gabriel Roth
 
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11. RE: On Devils and Demons

May-04-2001 at 11:52 PM (UTC+3 Nineveh, Assyria)

In reply to message #10
 
WOW guys! )

That is HUGE...the best one since lambs, sheep, sheep.

I wish I found this one before the book went to press! It is definitely going in the SECOND edition!

Shlama w'burkate
Andrew Gabriel Roth

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12. RE: On Devils and Demons

May-05-2001 at 10:33 AM (UTC+3 Nineveh, Assyria)

In reply to message #11
 
Last edited by Paul Younan on May-05-2001 at 11:05 AM (CT)

0rqym Yx0 0ml4

I was thinking the same thing. Don't worry, there will be even more that goes into the second addition!

This one actually came to mind while I was in Church the other week. We began to sing a hymn ('The Hymn of the Faithful') we sing every time we gather, but that I had not paid attention to until recently. You can find it on page 8 of the Liturgical book I sent you.

It starts out:

O'Dam Haim-nin, (Hain-geh)
(O, ye who believe, Hain-geh (a liturgical refrain of praise))
b'Awa w'Aw-ra w'Ru-kha d'Qud-sha (Hain-ga)
(In the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, Hain-ga (another liturgical refrain of praise))
Taw sawth mil-leh
(Come, listen to the words)
d'Mas-yan Pagh-ra
(that cure the body)
w'Makh-yan Naw-sha
(and give life to the Soul)

About half way thru the Hymn of the Faithful, we have the verses which started my questioning:

Day-weh ar-qin, Hain-geh
(The devils scatter)
w'Shee-dee nap-qin min di-khil-tah, Hain-ga
(And the demons proceed in fear)
Ma d'Sha-meen la
(When they hear)
l'Ha-deh Mil-tha Makh-yani-tha
(These lifegiving words)

When we finished singing this ancient Hymn, I began questioning - what exactly is the difference?

I remember translating them differently, and I always knew they referred to different things, but never, until now, knew exactly what that difference was.

Then I began looking at how these words were rendered into Greek, and I was startled. They always translated both terms by the same Greek "Daimonion."

They had no disctinction for demons, but Aramaic does. It's almost like the different "levels" of Angels - Archangel, Seraphim, Cherubim.

It would make sense that demons, being former angels, would also have "rank."

This is, of course, lost in the Greek.

Suddenly, Matti 17:21 (curiously, not present in the "Old-Syriac") made sense to me.


Fk^rwbw 0ml4

Peshitta.org

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