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Duty— the r. Primary maximums , the supremely perfect r. Personality is that quality in r. A present r. Undeified r. Deified r. Universe reality is supposedly. The r. Lucifer charged. Personality r.. The degree of selfhood r. Love loyalty derived from the r. Salvation from material fetters in the personal r. Salvation from spiritual blindness, the human r. God demands. Your great mission to be r.

A future hop—when the kingdom would be r. Jesus was a man of God. Few persons live up to the faith which they r. What is this they say, that you are. The father of the r. Jesus begins to organize. You may r. Peter did not get into more trouble. Jesus had a third r. The philosophic r. Jesus had for allowing the multitude. She refused to be comforted.

Prince but. System Sovereign, Lutentia, reigned supreme. The exigencies of the L. On the planet of your bestowal, set r. Planetary Prince. Dalamatians joined. I love the inspirational, open-ended beauty of 1 Peter Anne Neilson anneneilsonhome. What makes her work particularly distinctive, though, is not just how good it is. So do our children. And God knows exactly how each one of us is wired; butcher, baker, or candlestick-maker, we are all his handiwork , and he has good stuff for us to do.

Guide me. I love what David is asking for. A lot of ways might appeal, a lot of paths might look good, a lot of what we see and hear might be convincing. It smacks of finger-pointing, judgment, and pride. When he uses the word, it brims with refreshment — with things like honesty, justice, and grace.

And when he calls us to pursue righteousness as a lifestyle, it is his invitation to let our lives line up with his commands — not so much for his sake, but for ours. If a life marked by peace and quiet confidence sounds good to you and it sure does, to me , make this verse your Friday prayer. Pray it for yourself, or for someone you love:. I want my words to be helpful and encouraging. I want them to build people up. If you want that too, why not join me in making Ephesians your Friday prayer? Here it is. You can pray it for yourself, or for someone you love:.

Let no unwholesome talk come out of my mouth, but only that which is helpful for building others up, that it might benefit those who listen. So…ask for his help. Call on him. Reach down from on high and take hold of me; draw me out of deep waters. According to a couple of brainiac professors at U. Or the month. Or even, actually, on a Monday. You can read the U. Thank you that your mercies are new every morning.

Those are great for strengthening marriage, but what about all the other relationships in our lives? What about our other family members? Or our friends? How can we improve connections and strengthen ties with our parents, siblings, and in-laws? What about teammates and coaches…or that tricky roommate…or the co-worker who always seems to find a way to pinch our last nerve?

They work because, basically, they compel us to think and act more like Christ. Read the whole passage by clicking here , or start with just two little power-packed verses and turn them into a Friday prayer for yourself or for someone you love:. January is a often a time for reflection.

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For evaluation. For looking back…and, even more, for looking forward. I want to be sure I am investing time and talent the way God wants in the year ahead, and I want him to help me get the job done. Establish the work of our hands for us, yes, establish the work of our hands. Note: I first posted this prayer two years ago, but as I stare down the pile of bedsheets, tablecloths, and dirty socks and towels that represent Christmas Past, I feel like I need it today. Maybe you do, too. Perhaps the most noticeable difference between the full house and the empty nest is the amount of laundry that needs doing.

For years, particularly when we had four children all playing different sports, my life had a rhythm all its own:. Partly to break up the monotony, and partly to attach some sort of meaning to an existence that seemed to be measured in soccer games and grass stains, I started using the laundry cycle as a prayer prompt. I looked up a few verses about clothing and pressed them a-hem into service. This year, instead of groaning over the laundry pile, why not try this prayer when you pull a load out of the dryer?

A quick spin through Google reveals all sorts of prognostications — some funny, some serious, some terrifying. You can pray this one for yourself, or for someone you love:. Jeremiah Heavenly Father,. May we glorify you as our Lord and rejoice in you as our Savior this Christmas! Happily, the answer is yes. Paul quoted Isaiah:. May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.

The Root of Jesse is Jesus, the one who offers us joy, peace, and hope. Can there be any better Christmas prayer? Leave a Reply I love the book of Isaiah. He is the Wonderful Counselor and the Prince of Peace. He is the one whose coming is the glad tidings — the good news — our hearts are yearning to hear. In fact, Paul closed one of his letters with that very prayer, one where he asked God for continual peace in every circumstance.

Which means football. Which means U. Virginia fans will tell you that our beloved Wahoos have not won the annual contest in the last twelve years, and that our record this year has not exactly positioned our team as a threat. Alert fans, though, will point to that heady season between and a glorious stretch where we beat the Hokies every single year as proof that we have winning in our genes.

No hard feelings. Football has suffered for more than a little while; may this be the year that you restore us and make our team strong, firm, and steadfast. May they be on their guard, stand firm in the faith, be men of courage, and be strong. I get that. Plus, I have two Hokie sons-in-law, and I really should show them some love. You are the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort. Thanksgiving is next week!

Psalm 40 offers a beautiful picture of how God hears us, rescues us, and gives us a firm place to stand. Lift me out of the pit of despair, the mud and mire of life. Set my feet on solid ground and steady me as I walk. Give me a new song to sing, a hymn of praise — and may all who see what you have done be amazed and put their trust in you. Psalm , NLT. Early voting has begun. Guide the people of the United States in the election of officials and representatives that, by faithful administration and wise laws, the rights of all may be protected and our nation be enabled to fulfill your purposes; through Jesus Christ our Lord.

You know how it is when you learn a new vocabulary word and then you suddenly start start hearing it all the time? I first heard it performed live by a group of adorable, fresh-faced college students at a concert last weekend. And then, yesterday, I heard the recorded version by the actual artist a Swedish gal named Zara Larsson during my workout class. Or even a theft? Even more than that, though, I feel like this song which is of course very upbeat and catchy and actually a little bit irresistible typifies so much of what is upside down in our culture.

A friend of mine, who is mom to three young adult men, tells her sons that a woman should be able to walk, stark naked, through a fraternity or a bar, and be safe. She wants her boys to have enough self-control to respect every woman, no matter how she acts or looks. In both cases, for our sons and our daughters and for that matter, for us , it comes down a willingness to be responsible.

To exercise self-control. We all have eyes; we can look away. We all have feet; we can walk out. Back then, the need for self-control centered around things like swiping erasers from the first-grade supply closet, or even falling out of your chair at the dinner table something our kids managed to do with astonishing regularity. They worked for the stolen erasers and, thanks be to God, they are just as powerful for our lives today:.

Titus Whichever word you choose — blessed or happy — this verse is a beautiful way to pray for the people you love:. I wanna go there. Yesterday, I wrote about the power of praise in our lives. It also says that praise and thanksgiving are the ways that we enter into his presence. You can pray these verses for yourself, or for someone you love:. Be sensible and keep your mouth shut. Proverbs , NLT. The Bible has about a jillion things to say about the power of words, but given where we are as a nation, I think Proverbs is the one I want.

And was it even right, spiritually, to pray for a sports victory? I understand where questions like these come from. It can be easy to think that God is wired like we are, and that he can only handle a certain amount of stuff on his plate at any given time, so he needs to prioritize. And when we pray, we never bug God. He actually likes to hear from us. When we come to him with our concerns, we demonstrate both obedience since he tells us to pray and honor since what we are essentially doing is acknowledging his lordship over our lives.

Consider just a few invitations:. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. Philippians , NLT. And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. Is anyone among you in trouble? Let them pray. Is anyone happy? Let them sings songs of praise. James He wants that sense of connection, that fellowship, that relationship that happens when we communicate with him. And as a mom, I get that. I love it when my kids text or call. He is big enough to care about it all. Prayer prompts show up in all sorts of places.

Not sure if the water people knew they were putting a Bible verse on their bottle, but either way, it makes a good Friday prayer for yourself or for someone you love. Here you go:. A friend recently shared this verse with me. God is not unjust; he will not forget your work and the love you have shown him as you have helped his people and continue to help them. Several of the folks on my prayer radar are walking a rough road right now. Some are facing obstacles that make it tough to see a way forward. Others are grappling with rejection and disappointment in jobs and relationships.

And this week I read an article that offers scientific evidence to confirm this truth. It came with leaded-glass windows, crystal chandeliers, and hardwood floors that buckled and swayed. I thought it was charming; the builder we hired to do renovations, not so much. He said the house had not been built on any foundation. To the builder, this was not an insurmountable problem. He hired a foundation contractor to come in and re-do the thing, and before we knew it, the floors had leveled out.

We were able to use some of the original bricks in the re-do, and when all was said and done, we had a few left over. Most homeowners would have disposed of the pile, but not me. I love old books and libraries. Like old friends and old wine, they just get better with age. I know the trend is toward digital readers and LEED certified spaces that come with recycled desks and energy efficient lighting, but give me a cramped linoleum workspace hidden behind rows of stacks, and call me happy. Give him a teachable spirit, one that looks for insight and understanding the way he would hunt for a hidden treasure.

I really love the heat. But everyone has to hang up their flip flops at some point. Daniel So you already know that Virginia moved to New York City this week. The first item on our agenda was to find her a place to live. Apartment-hunting is hard, and I am sure I speak for every mother when I say we want our kids to land in a place that is safe and secure. A place like the one God promises in Isaiah If your children are on the move whether they are looking for an apartment, heading off to college, buying a home, or in the midst of some other transition , why not join me in turning this verse into your own prayer?

Here it is:. It is was? The good news is that obedience to God opens the door to all sorts of blessings. We get blessed in the city and in the country, blessed in our families and in our work, blessed when we come in and when we go out. And everyone will know that we belong to God. Deuteronomy , ESV. If you feel like you could use a little divine guidance today, try these words from Isaiah as your Friday Prayer:. Here are a couple of verses from this psalm, rewritten as our Friday Prayer.

Pray it for yourself today, or for someone you love:. May your mouth be filled with laughter and your tongue with songs of joy. O beautiful for spacious skies, For amber waves of grain, For purple mountain majesties Above the fruited plain! God shed His grace on thee, And crown thy good with brotherhood From sea to shining sea! O beautiful for heroes proved in liberating strife, Who more than self their country loved, And mercy more than life!

O Beautiful for patriot dream That sees beyond the years Thine alabaster cities gleam, Undimmed by human tears!

Strong's exhaustive concordance of the bible

Back when Robbie Jr. Big Robbie was delighted with that idea and immediately set about making a bracket which he literally put on a poster, with a title and everything. I had no idea you could win or lose a wrestling match by so many points; I thought it was just pin or be pinned. I should have known better than to try to compete in the push-up competition we had a couple of weeks ago, during our family vacay. Suffice it to say, I am not a strong person.

Either way, the good news is that God has given us a secret source of strength that has nothing to do with muscle tone. Because it is. May it encourage you as much as it encourages me:. I sampled a grapefruit beer that was probably less healthy than it sounded, but it did bring out the best in my onion rings. Cause him to be generous, and to conduct his affairs with justice. Virginia graduates tomorrow from Virginia, the school for which, yes, she was actually named. Joshua Class parties. Athletic tournaments.

That little line is one of my favorite sentences in the entire Bible. Truly, there is no greater joy. May they take delight in his word and be eager to put it into practice in their daily lives. May we have no greater joy than to hear that our children are walking in the truth. Exquisite chandeliers, open-air breezeways, lively artwork, and scores of breathtaking floral designs gave light to the eyes and joy to the soul.

Which is kind of ironic, given how the flowers themselves got dressed for the big event: See how the lilies of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. Instead, Jesus says, we are supposed to seek God before everything else and, like the flowers in the fields, trust him to take care of our needs. Help me give my entire attention to what you are doing right now, without getting worked up about what may or may not happen tomorrow. Thank you for your promise to help me deal with whatever hard things come up when the time comes.

Matthew , MSG. I was reminded of the maxim this week when a pal who raises chickens graced me with a sample of her harvest. Chicken-cooping does not appeal to me, but…people vary. And for that, I am grateful. Instead, stop and think about the unique gifts he has given to you, and how you might use those things to strengthen, equip, and encourage other people. Help me to use whatever gift I have received to serve others. Let me be a faithful steward of your grace in its various forms. And waterfalls. He said that the geologists wanted to know where the water from this particular fall would wind up, since it disappears into a cave in the ground.

To figure it out, they put cotton balls in all sorts of places where water tends to pool on The Mountain, and then added dye to the top of the waterfall. Et voila! All of the cotton balls in all of the little pools stayed white…except for one colored bunch. Are you needing that sort of favor today — maybe from a boss, a teacher, a coach, or even a friend? If so, turn Proverbs into your own Friday prayer:. Whelp, my beloved Wahoos lost to Syracuse last Sunday night. Every U. Bennett said the words came from an old church hymn.

Wodehouse click here for the hardcover version, here for the paperback :. But, really, the promise of joy after sorrow is older than both the hymn and the book. It comes from Psalm So we visited the National Aquarium in Baltimore this week. Maybe you or someone you know needs to be reminded of that today. Turn this promise into a prayer for yourself or for someone you love:.

Bestow on him grace and favor and honor. Psalm , AMP. I got a text this week from our daughter, Virginia, who is in her final semester at U. If you or someone you love is wrestling with a too-full schedule or the need for good time management, feel free to borrow the prayer I am praying for Virginia today. Teach us to number our days and recognize how few they are; help us to spend them as we should. Psalm , TLB. To Nicole, the bouquet was a simple hostess gift. To me, it was a huge blessing. Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another, and all the more as you see the Day approaching.

What a wonderful charge, particularly as we move toward Easter! Help me consider how you might be nudging me to spur others on toward love and good deeds. Renew in me a desire and a commitment to get together with other believers, and let me be a source of encouragement and strength to those who need to know more of your love. May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be pleasing in your sight, O Lord, my Rock and my Redeemer. May our Lord Jesus Christ himself and God our Father, who loved us and by his grace gave us eternal encouragement and good hope, encourage your hearts and strengthen you in every good deed and word.

Roads turned icy, schools shut down, and the birds outside my window huddled on the rooftop, daring each other to jump. They would hop to the edge, look down, and then egg each other on, like a flock of middle school boys. Either that, or they just forgot who they were in the storm. And maybe you do, too. When life turns cold and nasty, it can be easy to forget who we are, or how much we are loved.

Which is maybe why God put in that part about the birds, when he sent his disciples out into a world that would hate them. And even the very hairs of your head are numbered. Just put your name or the name of someone you love in the blanks, and remember that no matter how gloomy the forecast is, God is still in control. There are plenty of things that set Christianity apart from other world religions, but my favorite distinction might be the fact that we serve a God who knows us, and who invites us to know him back. There are all sorts of ways this relationship can flourish.

We can get to know God through reading Scripture. We can pray. We can hang out with people who reflect his love and his character. It is the ability to wait well. Bible commentator Matthew Henry wrote that patience involves things like deferring anger and being content to bear injuries. Clearly, patience is a virtue worth having. So are all of the other traits outlined in Galatians Why not pick one of these attributes or all nine!

Galatians a. Look at how this verse is written in the New Living Translation:. The old life is gone; a new life has begun! What a terrific promise! It also helps shape your perspective, as words filled with faith and hope and encouragement take up the battle against things like sickness, worry, or fear.

Last year, I told you how I spend a little time every December thinking about Robbie and each of our kids. I ask God to show me how he wants to bless or provide for them in the coming year, or to alert me to any particular needs they might have. Usually, one or more specific concerns or opportunities makes its way to the forefront of my mind: Maybe I sense that someone needs perseverance to make it through a particularly challenging circumstance or relationship.

Maybe someone needs divine wisdom for an impending change, like choosing a college or making a career move. Maybe someone else has a tendency to grow fearful or anxious, and they need help trusting God. Or maybe someone is just not being very nice to their siblings, and they could use a little more kindness or compassion in the coming year. Or, just open your Bible and ask God to pick a verse or two for you; the Psalms are a great place to start hunting. Write your prayer on an index card or a paper hand! Glory to God in the highest heaven, and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests.

Today, my lambs are all grown up Robbie turned 20 this week! We can pray it for our own kids, or for some little or big! As you think about gift-giving this year, consider the spiritual gifts that God has given to you and your family. Have you or your spouse been blessed with leadership skills, a heart for service, or material wealth?

Do your children seem particularly merciful, organized, or discerning? Do you know someone who is an excellent teacher, or who is especially good at explaining the gospel and pointing people toward Christ? Check out Romans , 1 Corinthians 12, or Ephesians to learn more, and as you wrap presents for your family and friends this Christmas, ask God to help them use their Spirit-given gifts to share his goodness and grace with a world in need.

We always go…and somebody always cries. Not this year, though. This year the crew was all smiles, and the younger cousins squealed with delight when Robbie peeled off his sweatshirt, grabbed an iffy-looking rope, and launched himself into the bay. I know there were no shepherds abiding or angelic hosts warming up but, to me, it was the perfect kickoff to Advent, a season filled with the inexpressible and glorious joy.

Though we have not seen you, we love you, and even though we do not see you now, we believe in you. For giving thanks. I think I might have embellished that title a bit. It is a psalm for giving thanks, true, but it is sooo much more. Just look at these promises: God is good. His love endures forever. We can enter his presence with thanksgiving. And we are his people — we belong to him! What a glorious privilege and joy!

Pull out whatever phrase you need today…or do like I did and take it all! How good it is to know that you, O Lord, are God — that you made us, and we are yours. We are your people! Draw us into your presence: Let us come through your gates with thanksgiving and enter your courts with praise. May we always remember that you are good. That your love endures forever. And that your faithfulness continues to us, to our children, and to all generations.

Two weeks ago, a Parisienne friend sent me this glorious photo in response to the Friday Prayer about being prepared, in every season. I hope you will join me:. May they sense your reassuring presence, coming and going. I pray that you may be active in sharing your faith, so that you will have a full understanding of every good thing we have in Christ.

That seemed backwards, somehow. When we know the goodness of God, we do want to tell other people. In any case, verse 6 is a terrific little prayer that we can appropriate today for ourselves, for our kids, or for someone we love:. If you knew you were about to die and wanted to get a message to someone you loved, what would you write? The Apostle Paul was in prison when he wrote his second letter to Timothy, the young man he loved as a son.

The letter is full of warnings and encouragements; reading it, you get the idea that Paul knew his end was near and, in fact, he was martyred not long afterwards , and that he wanted to equip Timothy to hang in there, and finish strong. Pray this for yourself today, or for someone you love:. One of the best ways to get to know God better — and to fall more deeply in love with him — is to fall in love with his Word. I meditate on it all day long. Thank you for revealing yourself through Scripture. God promises to do that for us. I think King David prayed it best in Psalm 19, when he asked God to forgive his hidden faults and keep him from being mastered by willful sins.

Back when Paul was writing his letter to the Ephesians, he described a culture marked by things like darkness, disobedience and empty words. The same charge holds true for us today. We are dearly loved, and we are called to be light in a dark and often confusing world. Sometimes they can open a door to trust, one that leads to a place of hope and security. Pray these verses for yourself, your children, or for someone you love:.

I like to pray this way for a lot of reasons, but mostly because the Bible transforms fears and worries into confident expectations and songs of joy. As does a little book that a friend sent me not long ago. Very handy. Guide me as I bring each problem area to You — my pressures, my finances, my uncertainties, my disappointments and failures including my failures in relating to people.

I trust You to work in my situations and give me practical wisdom in how to handle them. And even more, work in me. Hillary is now Mrs. So tomorrow is the big day. Hillary might have thought her five-year-old wedding ensemble was just a Halloween costume, but Robbie and I have pictured her — and prayed for her — as a wife pretty much since she was born. Let the wedding bells ring!

September 11th. We lift up our elected officials today, as well as leaders around the globe. Bless them with your good counsel, and direct their hearts — their thoughts, emotions, and decisions — like a watercourse, making them go wherever you please. In an effort to get it to behave, I looked up a bunch of verses about trust this week. It will come as no surprise that a lack of trust opens the door to nasty things like fear, anxiety and sleeplessness, whereas when we stake our trust in God — in his character and his promises — we welcome a host of blessings think peace, security, prosperity, steadfastness, and joy, for starters into our lives.

I wanted to find us a really good verse to pray today, and I managed to narrow the list of favs down to about Then Then 6. And I finally picked Isaiah It gives peace a chance to take root. They are that good. Thank you for your promise to keep us in perfect peace when our minds are steadfast, because we trust in you. The runner up is Romans yes, Romans again! I spied these veggies at the market Charlottesville again! Feel free to borrow these power-packed verses for someone you love…and know that, today, I am praying them for YOU:.

I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the saints, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge — that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God. Let the words soak into your mind. Think of them as a deep conditioning treatment. For your soul. If, on the other hand, your kids are college-bound, they are probably stuffing a laptop, a few cans of Spaghettios, and a set of XL twin sheets into a Hefty trash bag.

Or a hairbrush. All the while she kept failing in her health until she had no strength to stand on her feet. Like preceding rabbinical texts, the exegesis expands the seduction scene. Seduction Scene 1. But Joseph overcame her and set her onto the ground. She wept bitterly and tearfully pleaded with him to requite her love. She entreated him to say whether he ever saw a more beautiful or better woman than her who was doing so poorly on his account, after all the honour she had bestowed on him; why, he would remove that death for why should she die thus on his account.

She ensured him that no harm will come unto him from his master. To this Joseph answered that she should cease to entreat him for he could not sin against his God and against his master who was so generous to entrust the entire house into his hand. Scene 2. On the day that the banks of the Nile were overflowing, all the inhabitants of Egypt celebrated with music, songs and dance according to their custom.

Only Zulica stayed at home saying she was ill. And there was no one in the house but her. She went and dressed up in splendid clothes, with gems, silver and gold, and lit scent in the house and then sat at the opening of her quarter facing the way which Joseph would take when coming to do his obligation at home.

And here he was coming from the field into the house to do his duty work for the master. When he saw all that he flinched. She said, what is it Joseph, come in to do your duty work. She hurried and caught Joseph by his clothes saying, by the life of the king if you do not abide by my command you shall die today.


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With her other hand she hurried to fetch a knife beneath her clothes and held it against his throat. Greatly frightened of her, Joseph tried to run away. But she caught his clothes up front. And it happened that when he ran away in great fear, that a piece of the clothing that she was clutching, tore. Joseph left his garment with her and escaped outside for fear. Thus she conducted herself in cunning. She put off the garments that she had worn and changed back to her clothes. So it happened that as you all went out of the house, he saw that no one was in the house, he came and held me down to lie with me.

I held his clothes and tore them, and I screamed against him in a loud voice. Potiphar ordered Joseph to be flogged. As he was flagellated, Joseph bewailed, screamed and prayed to God, pleading his innocence. God then had endowed a ten-month baby with speech, and the boy opened his mouth and told the truth about the matter of affairs. Potiphar was embarrassed and ordered a stop to the beating. Joseph denied the allegation. Characteristics of Hebrew Exegesis in Sefer ha-yashar.

She receives a Persian name, Zulica, which appears for the first time in Hebrew exegesis in the Sefer ha-yashar. It is recited in Seffer Ha-Yahsar too, which thus remains loyal to the biblical text.


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This refers to Duet. In the Koran the tables are reversed. The tear is found at the back, proving to the judges that she was trying to hold him as he was fleeing towards the door. Yalkut Shomoni 13th century. While one variant develops into a separable scene; another variant shows consistency as an episode and yet entails more than one interpretation of the manner it took place.

All variants are closely associated. On this occasion, Joseph is hindered by a paternal authority higher than his father, that of God. In this text, the drinking stone is turned into a power yoked to control masculinity by God, like the Creator God who hovers over the primordial water in Genesis Yalkut Shimoni , Va-Yeshev 53 ; and giving him a thousand sliver coins, but he would not hearken to her. In this detail completion the reader is provided with more variations on the seduction scene:.

Midrash ha-Gadol 14th century. In classical rabbinic intertextuality, the details are repeated in this late medieval exegesis while replenished. Compiling preceding texts, it adds its own expansion and variation on the same matrix. Misdrash ha-Gadol evokes the sexual euphemism of Joseph thrusting his ten fingers into the ground in the heat of his passion instead of his penis… as appearing in Tanhuma Vayeshev 33 and Yalkut Shimoni Vayeshev Midrash ha-Gadol adds its own exegesis onto the preceding ones, bringing the interpretation of a certain rabbi Isaac who says that as Joseph was thrusting his fingers into the ground, his semen spilled through his finger nails Midrash Ha-Gadol Vayeshev However, in this text she offers her guest ladies bread and meat, not fruit.

This text is considered to have driven its source, from Tanhuma , independently of the Koran , according to Louis Ginzberg. Translations replace it incorrectly with citrons — which makes little sense as it is an inedible fruit; or oranges which is a poor replacement. The appearance of the Etrog in the stories of Joseph may carry multiple meanings. The Etrog , known today as a cultic fruit of Jewish Feast of Tabernacle is as inedible. The fruit Etrog bears multiple connotations in the Rabbinical texts.

Inconsistency among the sources concerning the Etrog suggests a discrepancy between a legendary fruit, a ritual fruit and an actual fruit. The word Etrog does not appear in the Hebrew Bible. Etrog is the Aramaic word for the Hebrew word hadar meaning loveliness or splendour. The fruit Etrog is accordingly translated from the Hebrew word Perri Hadar, fruit of loveliness or beauty.

The conventional and known application of the Etrog is found in the ritual of the Sukkoth, the Feast of Tabernacle. Here Etrog refers back to the command in Leviticus to make an offer of fruit of a tree of beauty, peri hadar. E, section 30, confers that Etrog implies a tree and fruit which equal each other in taste and beauty. This means that for Leviticus Rabba the Etrog is an edible fruit. In the Babylonian Talmud , 6th C. E , Sukkah , the writer refers to the Etrog as a fruit growing on water. Talmud Jerushalmi Sukka constitutes that Etrog is that of which both tree and fruit are splendid.

Rashi 11th C. E , referring to Leviticus still interprets that Etrog is a fruit the taste of which equal to splendour of its tree. However, Rashi in Sokkah , refers to the Etrog as an offer fruit forbidden for consumption yet allowed and meant for mere enjoyment, namely for its scent and pleasant shape. Tosfta , shabat 2nd C. The biblical word tapuah may not be the fruit known today as apple into which it has translated in European languages. Its breast like shape ends with a nipple shape, and is so called after this feature.

This ritual fruit as it is known today is conventionally inedible. The Legendary Etrog.

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At this point one turns to a survey of the legendary fruit Etrog. As seen above, rabbinical literature offers various versions in which the Etrog is a fruit of exquisite beauty and taste, but also a ritual offer fruit. Genesis Rabba 15, 4th C. Thus Genesis Rabba concludes that as Etrog refers to both the fruit and the tree being equally splendid and consumable, literally saying edible, the fruit of the Garden of Eden described in these terms must be Etrog.

The Etrog can be thus found linked with the predestined pains of pregnancy and labour and the primordial sin of the first woman in a 16th century Midrash compilation in Yiddish Tzenah u-Reenah [31]. Tzenah u-Reenah relates the legend of the Etrog of Eden to rite of a folk-anthropological character practised by women only. In this medieval rite, Jewish women at the end of the Tabernacle Feast would bite the dry stub of the Etrog the inedible ritual citric Etrog.

In doing so they would pose the query. Would not Eve have eaten from the tree of knowledge, all women would not have fallen into such danger that may bring them their death. The Etrog in these texts evokes both the legendary and the ceremonial connotations. The Etrog also denotes any beautiful fruit that one can imagine. All this opens a space for fantasy and interpretations as to the meaning of the fruit in the story.

My imagination had carried me off it seemed. This may show that I am a careless scholar, or that the text opened its lines for interpretations. The Koran. The text offered by the Koran remains loyal to Hebrew exegetic means in its replenishing details in the biblical text, and actualising it in time, place and culture. The Koran relates the following :.

Wrongdoers never prosper. Thus we warded off from him indecency and evil, for he was one of our faithful servants. He raced to the door, but as she clung to him she tore his shirt from behind… At the door they met her husband. Your cunning is great indeed! Joseph, say no more about this. Woman, ask pardon for your sin. She has conceived passion for him. It is clear that she went astray. To each she gave a knife, and ordered Joseph to present himself before them. This is no mortal, but a gracious angel. I sought to seduce him, but he was unyielding.

Standing on its own, the Assembly of Ladies may relate to the template of the biblical Song of Songs in which the female lover shares with lady friends the sickness of love Song of Song Another intertext may be found in the Book of Esther in which Queen Vashti throws a feast for women only Esther parallel to the feast Persian King organises for his male friends. The male feast of the king was supposed to culminate in exhibiting the feminine beauty of the Queen before the male guests.

These Misrahim texts are believed to rely on earlier rabbinical texts. According to Louis Ginzberg, as Tanchuma opens with yelamdeinu rabeinu , our teachers teach that, the text refers to earlier Hebrew sources and was created independently of the Koran. The Koranic story however is recorded to have been edited earlier in the seventh century.

However, the Koran could also derive its story from Jewish texts lost to us, or on the other hand, from orally transmitted stories. However, we can detect undeniable similarities between Joseph in the Koran who would have yielded but was hindered by a sign from Allah and Joseph in Bereshit Rabba who saw a sign from his father, mother and aunt. The later Yalkut Shimoni translates the domestic image into a divine revelation in disguise similar to the Koran. The Koranic narrative structure is consistent with both the biblical text and its extended midrash texts.

The Assembly of the Ladies seems an additional innovation; and yet it is difficult to prove whether the Tanhuma nourished on the Koran or vice versa, or that both relied on some oral tradition. The issue of influence and precedence has been disputed since the 19th century and has remained unresolved. As a compromise, my comparative discussion will treat the both Koran and the Tanhuma as parallel end-production within the context of this article.

The Jewish Zulica.


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A Jewish Moroccan legend about a certain Jewish maiden recycles a similar story in an inverted mirror: the chaste Jewish youth is a maiden while the powerful foreigner who wishes to seduce her is a Muslim Prince. The legend is related to the beginning of the 19th century, and yet it bears a typology of an oral folk tale. The Jewish heroine is known among the Moroccan Jews as Lala Zulica or Lala Sol Lala meaning a lady in Berber and is an example of a Jewish maiden who preferred death to marriage outside her religion.

Stories praise her beauty. A Muslim family with the purpose in mind to force her into marriage with their son abducted her.

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However, she resisted and chose death instead. As a virginal martyr and a female righteous, capable of engineering a miracle, Zulica is considered a protecting saint patron of baby daughters and young girls. Mothers come to pray by her gravesite especially after a death of a female child. At nights the Shekhina, the feminine spirit of God is seen to descend on the grave. Similarities are persistent. In the Jewish folk hagiography, Zulica surfaces as a female transformation of the Hebrew Joseph. Both Joseph and the Jewish Zulica protect their virginity and Jewish belief, confronting an erotic adversary of the privileged class who in addition belongs to another ethnic and religious group.

Both resist not only erotic seduction but also the temptation of social and economic privileges relying on their Jewish codes of belief and rules of sexuality, which clash with those of their erotic adversaries. The biblical text and its extended midrash texts all stress the presence of divinity accompanying Joseph. Based on Rashi , the 11th century rabbinical exegesis, Zena u-Rena CE , the Yiddish compilation of rabbinical texts, writes that Joseph is endowed with a cloud that descends on him to prove to the Egyptians that God is with him. In a modest survey on formulaic theories, Susan Witting conflates various theories of level structures.

She formulates that the one belongs to the level of presentation, and the other to the level of generation. One is thus engaged with the question how things are generated, or how things are presented. When we are concerned with the question how a text is presented, the level is that of presentation. On the level of presentation a process of choice with takes place with regard to selection and combination.

On this level of presentation, everything is textually bound and inter-textually related. But intertextual factors may influence level of generation as well. The simplified thesis of two levels, generation and presentation, allows elements such as metaphor, ideology, cultural ideas, time aspect and anything else to be reviewed on both levels without confusion. Both factors are interrelated. Accordingly, cultural templates, mythical metaphoric elements or formulaic subliminal patterns will be generated in from within the deep level into the surface level of the text by way of presentation.

Generation will produce variants on the synchronic level. Reverting to the presentation of these variants back to their generative level will deduce the formulaic constructs that paradigmatically associate and group them.

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On the level of generation, I will thus be looking for the cultural and mythical templates that have generated the text. On the level of presentation, I will be looking for characteristics revealed diachronically. The characteristics may show only a residual formulaic structure on the level of presentation of a text. Fragmental representation may thus show a selective choice of characteristics out of a pattern, which would be proven to be such, only on the generation level.

A synchronic analysis can reveal the coherent generative matrix, which answers the coherent pattern. In this way, I may be able to prove that such characteristics sustain a deep cultural idea or a mythical template, and that these templates have survived both on the level of presentation and on that of generation.

Tension and Coexistence of Cultural Patterns. I would like to refer back to the Koran in order to introduce the discussion on the cultural template of alternative rules of sexuality.