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Sith

February 9, 2019

Once again we come upon an ‘archaic’ word in the Holy Bible: sith.   Found in Ezekiel 35:6:

                    “…sith thou hast not hated blood, even blood shall pursue thee.” 

 

We can dismiss it as a ‘flyer,’ one of those hold-over words from Old English, and replace it with the commonly used quasi-equivalent, since.   Or, we could just read a little and seek to understand, before casting it aside as ‘poetic’ or ‘archaic’.   

 

Since (used as reference to time) — between then and now; from that time until now.   

 

Sith — Continuously, perpetually from that time and including into the future.  (Note that sith links the perpetual past to the perpetual future; whereas since links the past to the present, or to the immediate future.)

 

Now read Ez. 35:6 and watch the verbs: “sith thou hast not hated [past] blood, even blood shall pursue [future] thee.”    Also note the time duration used to describe their hatred: “Because thou hast had a perpetual hatred…” (v. 5); and the future description: “I will make thee perpetual desolations…” (v. 9). 

 

Perpetual — continuous hatred in the past leads to continuous desolation in the future.   As a perpetual motion machine will continue, uninterrupted, unless an external force stops it, so are the past actions and prophetic statements regarding Esau’s hatred for Israel.  The word sith fits perfectly: it’s an exact descriptor supporting the perpetual (past and future) sin and subsequent judgement of Esau.   Maybe it’s a small thing, a minor and archaic word to some, but I appreciate the wonder, the absolute precision, of every word in our Holy Bible.     

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