Although the original Greek texts had no chapters or verses, I will use the common chapter and verse format found in the Jerusalem Bible, along with the various titles and subtitles of the chapters of this edition. By reading in a language that is not my mother tongue, I hope to gain a greater comprehension of the texts beyond the common understanding. I will then write a short summary and commentary about each verse, paragraph, or section that I am reading, using the Greek, the French, and the English versions, along with the various footnotes that these editions of the Bible have provided. I have subdivided these passages into smaller verses. For the New Testament, I will also insert the Greek text between the translation and the commentary. I am going to go through the New Testament Bible, book by book, chapter by chapter, paragraph by paragraph, verse by verse, paraphrasing and commenting on each book of the New Testament. This is not a task that will be accomplished in a year or two, or maybe ever at all. However, I set out on this adventure with a basic understanding of the New Testament, as an old man who has spent a lifetime reading and thinking about these writings. Now, I want to do it in a more comprehensive but sharing way. I will post 5 blogs a day that will include the translated verse or verses that I am commenting on. Let the adventure begin!
The first night they encounter the fish in the Tigris River (Tob 6:1-6:6)
“The young man went out and angel went with him. The dog came out with him and went along with them. They both journeyed along. When the first night overtook them they camped by the Tigris River. Then the young man went down to wash his feet in the Tigris River. Suddenly, a large fish leaped up from the water. The fish tried to swallow the young man’s foot. He cried out. But the angel said to the young man.
‘Catch hold of the fish!
Hang on to him!’
So the young man grasped the fish. He drew it up on the land. Then the angel said to him.
‘Cut open the fish!
Take out its gall, heart and liver!
Keep them with you, but throw away the intestines!
Its gall, heart, and liver are useful as medicine.’
So after cutting open the fish, the young man gathered together the gall, heart, and liver. Then he roasted and ate some of the fish. They kept some to be salted.”
Now the adventure begins. Tobias, the angel, and his dog went on their way. We seem to have a domesticated dog. There is no mention of a donkey or other animal for transportation or hauling stuff. The first night they camped at the Tigris River, not very far from Nineveh. However, it is west of Nineveh, and they would have wanted to go east. So this was not a direct route. As Tobias went down to the Tigris River to wash his feet, a large fish tried to bite the foot of Tobias. He cried out. The angel told him to grab the fish, which he did. He had the fish on land, when the angel told him to cut it open. He then took out the gall, the heart, and the liver, as medicine, as the angel had requested. Then they roasted it and ate some of the fish. They salted the rest of the fish to eat later. This was a very good old fishing story.