Did the Father address His Son as “God”?

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Re: Did the Father address His Son as “God”?

Post by StevenD » Tue Jul 02, 2019 7:28 am

StevenD wrote:
Who in their right mind could see God as a throne anyway?
Paidion wrote:
Everyone! Once he understands what I pointed out in an earlier post.

The throne of a king is the symbol of the king's authority. For God to be your throne forever figuratively means that God is your authority forever.
Hi again, Paidion,

I congratulate your enthusiasm and creative efforts, though your construal of Ps. 45:6 (Heb. v. 7) seems unnecessary.

The history of the verse's interpretation bears out that its translation naturally reads something like:

"Your throne, God, is forever and ever."

A widely read medieval Jewish commentator (Rashi) maintained this same syntactical arrangement, but argued that "Elohim" should be understood differently than the Greek ο θεοσ reasonably permits. He argued that the word should be understood as "prince/judge" instead of "God". Rashi cited Exod. 7:1 in support of his interpretation. Exod. 7:1 (cf. also 4:16) involves the idea of Moses representing "Elohim" ("God" or "judge") to Pharaoh while Aaron functioned as Moses' prophet. One should bear in mind that while judges are not known to speak through prophets, God has famously done so (cf. Heb. 1:1-2).

https://www.chabad.org/library/bible_cd ... ter-45.htm

The Targum of Psalm 45 reads:

"Your throne of honor, Yahweh [some manuscripts add: "God of the heavens"], is established from eternity of eternity."
A more formal English translation of the Targum of the Psalm is located here:
The Jerusalem Publication Society 1917 rendering of the Psalm accords with the syntax of these translations (though interpretive bias shows through in adding the passive verb phrase--"given of"):

"Thy throne given of God is forever and ever;"
Despite theological interests that doubtlessly influenced rabbinic translators, I've not yet encountered any that refer to God as a throne. On the other hand, it is predictable that those disinclined to honor the Messiah as they honor God will avoid drawing conclusions that identify the king figure of Psalm 45 as God. Maybe your approach to the Psalm will appeal to such readers, though I would expect rabbinic exegetes to have already embraced such an interpretation apart from implications that could appear to dishonor God as a chair.

The translation you suggest seems counterintuitive to me. If it didn't require such an interpretive stretch, I would expect at least some rabbinic interpreters to have adopted it.
Last edited by StevenD on Sat Jan 23, 2021 10:26 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Did the Father address His Son as “God”?

Post by Paidion » Tue Jul 02, 2019 4:05 pm

Although the vast majority of translators of Hebrews 1:8 treat the words as a vocative, there are two translations in which they are regarded as a nominative. Perhaps you would reject these out of hand, but I thought I would quote them anyway:

But with reference to the Son: "God is your throne forever, and [the] scepter of your kingdom is the scepter of uprightness (Heb 1:8 NWT)

And an utterly literal translation:
...concerning but the son: The throne of thee the god for the age of the ages; a sceptre of rectitude the sceptre of the kingdom of thee.
(Heb 1:8 Diaglot)

Man judges a person by his past deeds, and administers penalties for his wrongdoing. God judges a person by his present character, and disciplines him that he may become righteous.

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