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Old Testament Hebrew Lexical Dictionary
Strong's #5012 - נָבָא
1) to prophesy
1a1) to prophesy
1a1a) under influence of divine spirit
1a1b) of false prophets
1b1) to prophesy
1b1a) under influence of divine spirit
1b1b) of false prophets
1301) bn (נב NB) AC: Flourish CO: Fruit AB: Prophecy: The pictograph n is a picture of a seed, the b is a picture of a tent or house representing what is inside. Combined these mean "seed inside". A fruit hides the seeds inside it.
Jeff Brenner, Ancient Hebrew Research Center Used by permission of the author.
נָבָא not used in Kal, pr. as it seems to me, i.q. נָבַע (ע being softened into א) to cause to bubble up, hence to pour forth words abundantly, as is done by those who speak with ardour or divine emotion of mind. Arab. نَبَأَ I. II. to shew, to declare, i.q. اخبر, Conj. II. specially used of a prophet, who reveals or declares the words of God to men. (Kindred is the Eth. ነበበ፡ to speak.) It is incorrect to make extolling, celebrating, the primary idea in this word.
(1) to speak (as a prophet) by a divine power, to prophecy, Gr. προφητεύω. In Hebrew, the passive forms, Niphal and Hithpael, are used in this verb, from the divine prophets having been supposed to be moved rather by another’s powers than their own, [which is the simple truth, “holy men spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost”]; ideas of this kind were in Latin often expressed by deponent verbs (see Ramshorn, De Verbis Deponentibus Latinorum, p. 24); compare verbs of speaking when passively expressed, as loqui, fari, vociferari, concionari, vaticinari (Ramshorn, loc. cit. p. 26).-This is the usual word for the utterance of the prophets, whether they are rebuking the wicked, or predicting future events. Const.
(a) absol. Jeremiah 23:21, לֹא דִבַּרְתִי אֲלֵיהֶם וְהֵם נִבָּאוּ “I spake not unto them (i.e. I neither commanded nor inspired) but they prophesied.” Amos 3:8, “(if) a lion roars, who does not fear? (if) the Lord speaks מִי לֹא יִנָּבֵא who shall not prophesy?” Joel 3:1; Ezekiel 11:13, 37:7 1 Kings 22:12; Jeremiah 19:14.
(b) with the addition of the name of a people or country to which the prediction refers; followed by לְ Jeremiah 14:16, 20:6 23:16 27:16 37:19 followed by עַל, commonly so used in a bad sense (in threatening), Jeremiah 25:13, 26:20 Ezekiel 4:7, 11:4 13:16 25:2 29:2 34:2 35:2 39:1 in a good sense (when the prediction contains consolations and the hope of a happier age), Ezekiel 37:4 also followed by אֶל in a bad sense, Jeremiah 26:11, 12 Jeremiah 26:12, 28:8 Ezekiel 6:2, 13:2, 17 Ezekiel 13:17, 21:2 in a good sense, Ezekiel 36:1, 37:9.
(c) with an accusative of what the prophet predicts, Jeremiah 20:1, 25:13 28:6 e.g. נִבָּא שֶׁקֶר “he prophesied lies,” Jeremiah 14:14, 23:25, 26 Jeremiah 23:26, 27:10, 15 Jeremiah 27:15נ׳ חֲלֹמוֹת שֶׁקֶר Jeremiah 23:32 and followed by בְּ, בַּשֶׁקֶר pr. to prophesy with falsehood, as a lying prophet, Jeremiah 20:6, 29:9. The words of the prophet often follow with לֵאמֹר prefixed, Jerem. 32:3, or וְאָמַר Eze. 21:33 30:2.
(d) followed by בְּ of him by whose inspiration the prophet prophesied, hence the prophets of God are said to prophesy בְּשֵׁם יְיָ Jeremiah 11:21, 14:15 23:25 26:9, 20 Jeremiah 26:20, 27:15 29:21 the prophets of Baal בַּבַּעַל Jeremiah 2:8.
(e) followed by לְ referring to the object of the prophecy (like letter c) Jeremiah 28:9, and to the time to which the prophecy belongs, Ezekiel 12:27.
(2) to sing holy songs as led by the Spirit of God, to praise God, 1 Samuel 10:11, 19:20 1 Chronicles 25:2, 1 Chronicles 25:3.-Pret. 2 pers. נִבֵּאתָ and once נִבֵּיתָ (like verbs לה֞) Jerem. 26:9 part. נִבָּא plur. נִבָּאִים and נִבְּאִים Jeremiah 14:14, 16 Jeremiah 14:16, as if from the sing. נִבֶּא according to the analogy of verbs לד֞, which is also found in the Inf. with suff. הִנָּֽבְאֹתוֹ Zechariah 13:4.
(1) i.q. Niph. No. 1. to prophesy, absol. -Nu. 11:2527 ; 1 Kings 22:10; Ezekiel 37:10 followed by לְ 1 Kings 22:8, 18 1 Kings 22:18, and עַל 2 Chronicles 20:37 of him to whom the prophecy refers. הִתְנַבֵּא בַבַּעַל to prophecy by the authority of Baal, Jeremiah 23:13.
(2) to sing as seized with a divine impulse, to praise God, used of the sons of the prophets and Saul, 1 Samuel 10:6, 10 1 Samuel 10:10 -1 Sam. 19:2024 ; used of the excited raving of the prophets of Baal, 1 Kings 18:29. Hence
(3) to be mad, μαίνεσθαι, or rather to act as if mad, 1 Samuel 18:10. As the prophets when moved by the Spirit of God were often like madmen vehemently agitated, and spasmodically distorted [this applies rather to false prophets than to true ones], hence in Greek and Latin words of raving (μάντις from μαίνομαι; furor, furere) were often applied to the divine [?] impulse of their prophets and oracular poets. In Jeremiah 29:26 there are found conjoined מְשֻׁגָּע וּמִתְנַבֵּא mad and prophesying, and a true prophet, 2 Kings 9:11, is called in derision a madman.
Hence נְבוּאָה, נָבִיא, נְבִיאָה, also נְבוֹ and its compounds.
the Week of Proper 24 / Ordinary 29