The following is an excerpt from the author’s ” The Ugaritic Scam and the Bible: An Analysis of the Erroneous Use of the Materials from Ras Shamra to Rewrite and Alter the Old Testament (c)2004. Please excuse internet induced transliteration problems.

Proverbs 1:32 “For the turning away of the simple shall slay them, and the prosperity of fools shall destroy them.”

The most notorious of the Ugaritic-wielding Bible “correctors” was Mitchell Dahood, a Lebanese born Catholic priest and Jesuit who, as a professor at the Pontifical Institute, led a crusade to reinvent, to use a popular modern term, the Bible on the basis of texts belonging to the very pagan culture that the Bible condemns and warns against. It should not come as a shock to anyone who is familiar with the history and theology of Catholicism that the pontifical institute would use a priest to undermine God’s Word. The Catholic Church has a long and sordid history of murdering people by the thousands for attempting to bring the Word of God to the people, or for even trying to read it. Failing to eradicate the Bible in languages that people can understand, the Catholic Church turned their attention to controlling how much of it that is read, by distorting its message as much as possible, and to producing so many confusing variant translations that no one without spiritual discernment knows which to read. This last tactic, especially, has had enormous success, even with professed Christians, and sadly, I might add, with some who falsely call themselves KJV-believing Christians.

Dahood presents an argument for retranslating Proverb 1:32 that is based on his own lack of wisdom and spiritual discernment. He posits the following:

“For the idleness of the simple will slay them, And the ease-taking of fools will destroy them.”1

The verse is not a difficult verse to understand as the KJV has it; in fact, it is a profound one that Dahood and his fellow skeptics could learn from, if they were not too busy puffing themselves up. It is turning away from God and truth that slays the simple, and wealth and ease destroy almost everyone that achieves these things without God. In fact, they have damaged countless people’s walks with God.

What is Dahood’s reasoning for the emendations? He simply does not understand them, so he posits that me¸sûbâ is derived from the root y¸sb (to sit or dwell) instead of from ¸sûb (to turn back), as the Masoretes understood it. Dahood admits that “a derivation from y¸sb seems less probable,” but goes on to assert that the sense “demands it.”2 He makes a vague statement about Ugaritic-Phoenician parallels supporting this emendation, but only offers a footnote that does not appear to have the least bit of relevance to the issue. I will let the following meanderings speak for themselves.

“… This version becomes less tenable when it is pointed out that in EA 147.56 Canaanite nufti, “I am at rest, ” is glossed by another Canaanite verb batiti, “I am at ease.” Scholars (e.g. W.F. ALBRIGHT in JEA 23 [1937] 199) have recognized that batiti stands for ba*?i?î. In other words, all four substantives in 30,15 are synonyms, connoting “inactivity,” thus leaving no room for the idea of moral return in ¸subâ.”3

I have no idea what any of that means. As for Dahood’s rendering of ¸salwâ as ease taking, this stems from a lack of understanding of the word. The word implies a passive state of being in a situation of ease or peacefulness, hence prosperity. It is not a voluntary state of being as is implied by ease-taking.

This is a good example of how the Bible must be spiritually discerned. Those who allow their own ego and lack of understanding guide their reading are guided by an entirely different spirit, and they will never understand the Word of God, no matter how well they read the original languages, or how many commentaries they read.

1 Dahood, Proverbs, p. 6.
2 Dahood, Proverbs, p. 7.
3 Dahood, Proverbs, p. 7.

John Hinton, Ph.D.
Bible Restoration Ministry
A ministry seeking the translating and reprinting of KJV equivalent
Bibles in all the languages of the world.