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Matthew 8:18-13


From Gary Blais

I will be using the Aramaic name Esho in place of Jesus for this text. In Hebrew he is called Yeshua.

About the ninth hour Esho cried out with a loud voice, saying Eli Eli Lama Sabachthani. Meaning, My God My God why have you forsaken me. When they heard this, they said he calls for Elijah.

There has been a problem with the translation. Esho spoke Northern Aramaic. The original Aramaic words are Eli Eli Lmana Shbakthani meaning. “My God My God for this (cause or purpose) was I spared or kept.” The Greek words in translation as given are Eli Eli lama (there is no word like “lama” in Aramaic – should be. (Lmana). The words in the original are “Eli Eli lmana Shbakthani.” This is to say. “It is my destiny to die this kind of death.” It does not mean what the King James translators give, nor is there anything in the tone of the words to indicate an appeal for help, as implied by expositors. The Jews simply thought he was calling on Elijah, for Elia is the Aramaic for Elijah.
The Aramaic word “Shbakthani” stems from the root word (shbk) meaning to spare, keep, reserve, allow, permit. The context and use determine its meaning.

Psalm 22:1 In the Aramaic is rendered. “Let me live,” in the sense of “Spared me” instead of “forsaken me.” When suffering or in deep agony or distress the Eastern and Oriental people wonder why they live. And so, they ask God why he has spared them or let them live. In Psalm 22 The writer wonders why they have been spared and let live to go through so many trials and struggles and why God has not speedily vindicated them of their enemies.

The Aramaic words for “forsaken me” are taatani and nashantani. Meaning also to forget. Had Esho meant that he was forsaken of God he would have used the word, taatani or nashantani and the people near the cross would have understood what Esho was saying. And the Jews would have gloated saying. “We told you so, he is a sinner. See God has forsaken him.” But when he said. “For this I was spared.”

The people at the cross and the Jews and soldiers could not understand what he was saying. For was he not dying as a thief and a murderer on an accursed cross at an accursed place, the Skull (golgatha). Forsaken me – Check Psalms 13:1, 42: 9: 43: 2: 44:9: 60:1: 78: 7-11 (Eastern Version). If God had forsaken Esho. How could he have conversed with God?
Any Eastern leader dying innocently might exclaim today: “My God, my God, for this I was kept and spared. This is my hour; this is the purpose for which I came. Let the people say and think what they will, but my death has much more meaning than they know.”

The Aramaic word “lmana” means. “For what purpose.” It is never a question but always used as an exclamation of wonder and awe over the accomplishment of the thing at hand.
Jesus / Esho taught that God was a loving father, whose watchful care and presence covered even the flowers of the field and the birds of the air. He is a Father who at no time is absent or afar off from his children. He never leaves us or forsakes us.

Go on to comments: Forgiven of Sins Without Sacrifice - Part 2 - Mark 2:5, 9 (2:1-12) (i)
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