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Qal. The simple or base or pure stem of Hebrew verbs. The Qal stem amounts to a simple affirmation of being (stative) - "he is cold" or action "he walked." The other six Hebrew verm stems are variations or alterations from the basic Qal stem. Hebrew verbs, unlike English verbs, cannot be divided into past, present, or future tenses. Rather, the Hebrew Perfect tense is used to describe completed action. It describes action that is done, or as good as done, regardless of whether it is in the past, present, or future. The Hebrew Imperfect tense is used to describe action that is either incomplete or dependent. Again, Imperfects may refer to the past, the present or the future. Here is further information off site about Hebrew perfects and imperfects..
Qere. That which is to be read in the Hebrew Text of Scripture. The designation refers to the word in the Masoretic Text (MT) that is to be read, in distinction to the word that is written, designated as Ketiv. The word that appears in the main text of the MT is the Ketiv reading, while the word that appears in the margin is the Qere reading. The Masoretic scribes had such high regard for Scripture that they would never alter in the main text the word that appeared in the manuscript from which they were copying. But there was also an oral tradition of Scripture, one acquired from countless hours of hearing the Word of God read in synagogues. When the scribe knew that the oral tradition (how it was to sound) differed from the Ketiv reading in his manuscript, he would place a "corrected" reading that reflected the proper sound out in the margin that was called the Qere reading - that was how it was supposed to be read. Of course, over the years, gradually more and more Qere readings were accumulated. It is the task of textual critics and Bible translators into other languages to determine which is actually the more correct reading - the Ketiv or the Qere. All editors of modern English Bible versions must grapple with this task. Sometimes the editors select the Ketiv reading. At other times they opt for the Qere reading. Even the editors of the original 1611 King James Version sometimes opted for the Qere reading instead of the Ketiv. At least that version had marginal notes that indicated the options between which the translators had chosen. No major doctrine is affected by the differences between Ketiv and Qere readings. In fact, the discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls (DSS) in the Qumran community between 1946 and 1956 demonstrated the amazing accuracy of the MT, written almost a thousand years later.
Qumran. A religious community on the northwest shore of the Dead Sea dating from ca. 150 B.C. to A.D. 70. The inhabitants were most likely a conservative, sectarian religious community that had rejected the status quo. The presence of a scriptorum at the site is consistent with a community who labored to produce copies of the Hebrew Scriptures as part of their worship. A significant number of copies and fragments of the Hebrew Scriptures and other Hebrew documents have been recovered from nearby caves. These documents are known as the Dead Sea Scrolls. The great majority of these Biblical scrolls are so similar to the Masoretic texts preserved by the Masorete scribes in the seventh to tenth centuries A.D. that the Masoretes' accuracy in copying the Scriptures has been significantly authenticated. The Masoretic Text is the text of the Hebrew Bible today. The most widely-used printed version of the MT is the BHS. See Dead Sea Scrolls.
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Updated December 31, 2019