God Didn't Say That

Bible Translations and Mistranslations

Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner? (Or: Why Couldn’t the Egyptians Eat with the Hebrews?)

What do dinner seating arrangements, shepherds, and Hebrew sacrifices have in common? It turns out to be an important question with an interesting answer.

1. Genesis 43:32 has a curious observation about the meal that Joseph ordered to be prepared for his brothers during their second visit. Joseph, still masquerading as an Egyptian — he recognizes his brothers, but they don’t yet know who he is — has a meal prepared for his guests. But Joseph eats alone, not with his brothers, because for Egyptians to dine with Hebrews is “a to’evah for the Egyptians.”
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June 4, 2012 Posted by | translation practice | , , , , , , , , , , , , | 9 Comments