1. Blessed be the name of the God, the Merciful One,
full of mercy.

2. Love to the God Master of the centuries,

3. the Merciful One, full of mercy,

4. King of Judgement Day.

5. O You whom we adore,
O You of whom we want to sing in alternating choirs!

6. Deign to show us the narrow path of survival,

7. the narrow path of those on whom You have poured out your sweetness,
chosen from among the vessels of wrath,
and whom are not objects of contempt.

*     *     *

Thus ends Sūrah 1. We greatly encourage you to read Brother Bruno’s interpretation of this sūrah before continuing your reading of the Qurʾān.

Go to “Interpretation of Sūrah 1”

Go to Sūrah 2
Reading Level 2   -   Reading Level 3

1. “Blessed be the name of the God.” Régis Blachère translates: “In the name of Allah,” and comments, following Theodor Nöldeke: “This is reminiscent of the be-šém Yahweh of the Bible.”

bismi llāhi would in fact be its exact transliteration, except for the Arabic common noun ʾallāh, “the God,” being substituted for the Sacred Hebrew Tetragrammaton yahweh, if the preposition b did not remain in this instance, ‘dangling’ with no verb that governs it. According to Denise Masson: “The formula ‘in the Name of God’ or: ‘in the Name of the Lord,’ is often repeated in the Jewish and Christian liturgies (cf. Ps 20:8; Ps 118:10-12; Ps 124:8; Mt 23:39).” This, however, disregards the fact that in each of these references, b is governed by a verb.

Our hypothesis is that this b is the abbreviation of the Hebrew bārūkh. Abbreviating is a favourite technique used by the authors of documents of the rabbinic tradition, which lead to a vast system, the object of the scholarly yet non-exhaustive inventories of Gustaf H. Dalman and, more recently, of Ashkenazi and Jarden.

bārūkh Yahweh ʾèlohī[...] bārūkh šém kebōdō le ʿōlām  “Blessed be Yahweh God […], blessed be the name of His glory forever.” Ps 72:18-19 This is a formula of praise and thanksgiving that abounds Old Testament (Gn 24:27; Jg 5:2, Jg 5:9; Ne 9:5; Dn 2:20) and continues, with the exception of the “unpronounceable” Tetragrammaton, to accompany the synagogal liturgy and all the events of individual and domestic Jewish life. This is also the case for the Arabic basmala, by giving to ʾism, a transcription from the Hebrew šém, “name,” the function of subject. By its vocabulary and by its structure it is a benediction. Let us point out, moreover, that all of Nöldeke’s references are benedictions.

Although it is easy to draw a parallel between the traditional translation of bismi by “in the name of” and the Christian Trinitarian invocation, which is well-attested in Ethiopian manuscripts, it must however be observed that, even in this case, after the incipit: “In the Name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit,” the scribe continues with a statement of the action that governs this incipit as an adverbial phrase: “I do this or that.” Our hypothesis also receives epigraphic support from the numerous “dedications in the Palmyrian language to ‘Him whose Name is eternally blessed,’ often qualified as ‘good and merciful,as is the case here. More than 200 monuments have been found, especially incense altars dating from the 2nd and 3rd centuries, dedicated to ‘Him whose Name is eternally blessed.’ ”

Finally, it is noteworthy that the Qurʾān begins with the letter b, the second letter of the alphabet. The same is true of the Bible. This coincidence cannot be fortuitous if one reflects on the developments of the rabbinical tradition on this theme. Because the book of Genesis begins with beréʾšīt, in the beginning,” the masters of this tradition teach that “the world was created by the beth,” for a reason that is clearly consistent with our exegesis: because this letter is the initial of the word bārukh, which means the “benediction.

“of the God,” ʾallāhi. The Arabic ʾilāh preceded by the definite article ʾal: ʾal-ʾilāh, which has become through contraction ʾallāh “the God.” ʾilāh, is the transcription of the Aramaic ʾèlāh, in Hebrew, ʾèlōha, the plural of which ʾèlohīm, is preferred by the Pentateuchal documents referred to as “Elohist” and “priestly.” It was banned by the rabbinical tradition during the first four centuries of our era as being too syncretistic. It is the amplified form of ʾel: “God,” the name of “the divinity common to the entire Semitic pantheon. The substantive ʾIl can designate any god.” Here, preceded by the article, it is determined: “of the God.”

“the Merciful One,” ʾar-raḥmāni. Aramaic raḥmanaʾ. A name of God that is frequent in Rabbinic literature. It is attested in Judeo-Sabaean inscriptions. It refers to the divine attribute par excellence, according to biblical revelation (cf. Ex 33:19; Ps 111:4; Is 49:15 +; Lk 1:78.) Furthermore in Southern Arabia, Ryckmans writes, “Christian inscriptions place Raḥmanān at the beginning of the Trinitarian formula ‘Raḥmanān, and His Messiah and the Holy Spirit.’” Let us point out that here our formula assigns it the second place but with the function of apposition to “name of the God,” which avoids a plurality of persons.

“full of mercy,” ʾar-raḥīmi. The biblical Hebrew raḥūm, is synonymous with the previous term. Ex 34:6 Perhaps the redundancy is a polemical remark against the Christian Trinitarian formula and the Sign of the Cross that accompanies it, from the very beginnings, in the Baptismal rite. For the basmala remains strictly monotheist, referring to the same unique God with three names: ʾallāh, the God ʾel of Abraham,Gn 14:18-20 ʾar-raḥmāni r-raḥīmi, the God of Moses. Ex 34:6

2. “Love to,” ʾal-ḥamdu li. The biblical Hebrew ḥāmad, “to desire, to covet” (Ct 2:3; Ps 42:2-3; Ps 63:2; Ps 84:3; Ps 119:20).

“master,” rabbi. The Aramaic rab, “master,” passed into the Greek of the New Testament, in which it designates Jesus in the mouth of His disciples (Mk 9:5 and passim). In the Rabbinical tradition, the Jewish doctors called themselves rabbi in Palestine, rab in Babylonia regardless of Jesus’ recommendation to the contrary. Mt 23:8 They do not use rabbi as a divine name under any circumstances. Here, on the contrary, by this appellation, God is assigned the function of didaskalos (Jn 1:38; Jn 3:2), i.e. of magister, (cf. Is 30:20; Jr 31:33-34.) Blachère, who translates “Lord” ignores this meaning.

“of the centuries,” lit. “of the eternities;” ʾal-ʿālamīna. In Blachère “of the Worlds.” The Aramaic ʿālam (Hebrew ʿōlām) permits the two meanings: “eternity,” in the sense of “hidden, unknown time” (root ʿlm), and “universe.” Remark Blachère’s contradiction: “rabbi l-ʿālamīna ‘Lord of worlds’ is found in several Targumim […]. It should be noted that in Arabic, the Aramaic ʿōlem [sic] ‘eternity’ took on a wholly different meaning…” Furthermore, we read in the Targumim either ribbōn or mareī ʿalmaʾ but not rabbi. Blachère refers us to Nöldeke, but he obviously did not bother to consult the references that he indicated.

4. “King of Judgement Day.” By an incomprehensible oversight, Nöldeke declares that no reference can be ascribed to this formula “kann ich nicht belegen.”

“king,” mālik. Hebraic: mèlèk. Countless benedictions, praises and doxologies of the Old Testament contain the mention of God’s Kingship. Jesus did not omit it from the Our Father; and we find it again in the rabbinical prayer: the Kaddish, or “sancification” (of God’s name). This ancient hymnic prayer, composed for the most part in Aramaic was written in order to confront the Lord’s prayer. Yet, we also find God’s Kingship mentioned in the Hodaʾah, or prayer of praise of the Tefillah, according to the version found in Amram Gaon’s Siddur Rab Amram. In the latter case, however, it assumes a vague and conventional character while, in the verse at hand, the kingship is eschatological, as in the Kingdom psalms: “Yahweh reigns, mālāk” (Ps 96:10; Ps 93:1; Ps 97:1; Ps 99:1 Ps 47:9), which does not mean ‘becomes king,’ nor ‘became king’ [...] as though Yahweh had acceded to kingship at the time of the “judgement” of the peoples,” but “rather that the unchanging kingship of Yahweh will be asserted in a resounding way at that time.”

“of […] Day” yawmi. Hebraic yōm. It is the “Day of Yahweh,” a day of terror and ruin, which the prophets announced to Juda and Israel as a chastisement for their infidelity (Am 5:20; Is 2:12.) They also announced it to the pagan nations as a chastisement for their idolatry (Is 13:6-9 and passim); for the final restoration and triumph of Israel, converted by the trial. Thus, in the end, it will be a day of judgement for all. (Zp 1:3; Ml 3:5, Ml 3:18-23.)

“Judgement,” ʾad-dīni. Ps 96:10: “Yahweh is King. [...] He judges, yādīn, the peoples with equity,” which “must be understood in the general and benign sense of ‘to govern,’ ” according to the prophecy of Isaiah: “My justice draws near; my salvation is gone forth, and my arms shall judge the people.” (The Book of Isaiah 51:5) 

5. “O You,” ʾiyyāka. The Hebraic interjection ʾiy, to which is appended the masculine third person singular pronoun suffix ka, with a linking euphonic ā.

“whom we adore” naʿbudu. Hebraic ʿābad, “to serve,” according to Moses’ recommendation to his people: “Him shall you adore, taʿabod” (The Book of Deuteronomy 6:13.)

“we want to sing in alternating choirs!”, nastaʿīnu. Hebraic ʿānāh, “to answer,” “to raise one’s voice,” thus “to start singing” a psalm (Ps 147:7), but also to sing in two choirs that respond to one another. Here, this expresses well the reflexive causative form constructed on the model of the fourth form of the Ethiopian prefixed by ʾasta. The word is repeated three times in The Book of Exodus 32:18 precisely: Moses came down the mountain and heard the commotion of the idolatrous feast organised in his absence around the Golden Calf: “It does not sound like chants (ʿanōt) of victory, nor does it sound like chants (ʿanōt) of defeat; the sounds that I hear are chants in alternating choirs.” (ʿannōt, in the infinitive piel construction.)

This is the first infidelity of this “stiff-necked” people that would be followed by many others, contravening the first Commandment at the very moment when Moses was sealing the Covenant in its name on the summit of the mountain! Our author makes a subtle allusion to this episode from Israel’s past, ardently protesting: for us, it is not so.

The “alternating choirs” are undoubtedly those of a liturgical assembly formed in two choirs responding to one another, according to the manner used in Christian assemblies from the time of Saint Basil in the East, and in the synagogal offices to recite the šemaʿ and the hallel.

6. Deign to show us,” ʾahdinā. Blachère translates: “Lead us (into),” the preposition in parentheses is his own, but it is not in the text. Hebraic: hādāh: to stretch forth one’s hand to indicate the way (Gesenius quoting Is 11:8).

the narrow path,ʾaṣ-ṣirāta. According to Blachère: “‘the Path’ is most likely an alteration of strata. The word is only found in the Qurʾān in its metaphorical sense with the epithet mustaqīm(un) ‘straight.’ Nöldeke and Hirschfeld prudently indicate the parallelism with Ps 27:11. In reality, if this is indeed the meaning, the parallel can be made with a hundred other passages of the Psalter! From Psalm 1, known as the “two paths”, to Ps 131:1, Ps 139:24 and passim, not forgetting the whole Psalm 119. Nevertheless, there are two objections to this translation: 1° the mechanism by which strata was “transformed” into ṣirāṭa is inexplicable; 2° the Latin word strata does not mean “path” but the “paving” of the path.

Scientifically, for the etymology of ṣirāṭa, we suggest the Hebrew adjective ṣor, “narrow, constricted” linked to an abbreviation: the first letter of ṭarīq, “path,” which itself is transposed from the Hebrew dèrèk, this latter being so frequently reduced to its initial letter in rabbinical writings.

“of survival,” ʾal-mustaqīma is a participial form of the causative, derived from the Hebrew verb qūm “to stand up, to be standing.” Perhaps Blachère’s translation “straight,” could be explained by the same root. The construction, however, is much more natural if the word is not assigned the function of epithet, but rather that of a complement of the noun ṣirāṭa. See the Hodaʾah of the Siddur ʿAvodat Yisraël: “We offer benedictions and thanksgivings to your great and holy Name because you gave us life and you keep us (alive) weqiyamtānū. Thus deign to make us live and maintain us, ūteqaīménū.” Yet, what, in the modim derabbanan, is only a bland reminiscence of the ancient and luminous prophetical theme of the “remnant,” seems here to be drawn directly from its Isaian source: “He who is left in Sion and remains in Jerusalem will be called holy, every one who has been recorded for life in Jerusalem.” (Is 4:3)

7. “On whom You have poured out your sweetness,” ʾanʿamta ʿalayhim as in The Book of Psalms 90:17 : “May the sweetness of Yahweh our God be on us,” noʿam yahweh ʿāleīnū. Blachère’s translation “Those to whom you gave your kindness,” tones down the contrast with “wrath.”

“chosen” ġayri, from the Greek hairein: “to seize, to take” which, in the middle voice means: “to elect, to choose.” Here, it is equivalent to a negation: “who are not vessels of wrath” as a result of a “choice” that has set them apart. (cf Rm 9:22-24; Ep 2:3-6.) 

“vessels of wrath,” ʾal-maġḍūb for Blachère, the “object of (Your) wrath” Hebraic: ʿāṣab : “to distress, to grieve, to irritate.” Cf. The Book of Psalms 78:40: “How often they grieved, yaʿaṣībūhū, Him in the wilderness?” Israel’s apostasy in the desert was only the prototype of a long series of infidelities calling down the wrath of God on His rebellious people.

“objects of contempt,” ʾaḍ-ḍāllīna. Blachère translates “the Strayers (les Égarés).” Nothing justifies this word other than the quibbling of commentators who affirm, on the strength of “a Tradition that is said to go all the way back to the Prophet,” that this term designates the Christians, and that the previous expression designates the Jews. This, moreover, leads to a misinterpretation to which Blachère objects.

The Hebraic etymology puts an end to the quibbling: in Hebrew zālal (intransitive) means “to be vile, abject.” Cf. The Book of Lamentations 1:11 for the word. For the idea, see the Hodaʾah of Rabbi Amram Gaon: “You did not bring confusion upon us, Lord our God; you have not abandoned us and you have not hidden your face from us.” It is implied: although we are very small and vile. There is a tinge of compunction, very consonant with the spirit of the small “remnant,” the object of divine predilections since the return from the Babylonian exile. (Ps 51:19; Is 57:17-19.)

More than a thousand years after the return from the Exile, more than six hundred years after Jesus Christ and with Jerusalem still in a state of destruction, would the author of this prayer and the group who surrounded him (“we,” verses 5-6), be claiming to identify themselves with the small “remnant” prophesised by Isaiah? Who is he, who are they?

= Dn 2:20

Ex 33:19

Ex 34:6

Ps 111:4

Ps 33:11

Ps 119:20

Lk 1:50

Ps 96:10

Am 5:18 +

Is 2:6-22

Zp 1:14-18

Mt 25:34

Dt 6:13

2 45

Ex 32:18

Ct 7:1

Ps 119:33

Mt 7:13-14

Is 4:3 +

Dt 30:19-20

Ps 27:4

Ps 90:17



Ex 32:10-14

Is 5:25

Is 9:11

Is 9:16

Is 9:20

Zp 1:15

Rm 1:18

Rm 2:5-11

Régis Blachère (1900-1973) was a French orientalist, Arabist and Islamic scholar. He held the Arab Philosophy Chair at the Sorbonne and was the director of the Institute of Islamic Studies (Institut des études islamiques) in Paris. He published a history of Arabic literature (1952), a study on the problem posed by Muḥammad (1952), a translation of the Qurʾān (1950 and a new version in 1957), and an introduction to the Qurʾān (1959). He also co-authored a grammar of classical Arabic with Gaudefroy-Demombynes. Throughout his analysis, Brother Bruno refers to Régis Blachère’s translation of the Qurʾān, along with Denise Masson’s, for they are the only recent translators who show some concern for critical methods. Blachère and Masson will only serve Brother Bruno occasionally to emphasise the inconsistencies and contradictions of the “accepted meaning.” He does not systematically compare his exegesis with theirs. You will come to understand how totally pointless this would be as you advance in Brother Bruno’s commentary.

Theodor Nöldeke (1836-1930) was a German orientalist. He studied in Göttingen, Vienna, Leiden and Berlin. Along with Ignaz Goldziher, he is considered the founder of modern Islamic studies in Europe. In 1859 his history of the Qurʾān won the prize of the French Académie des Inscriptions et Belles-Lettres, and in the following year he rewrote it in German (Geschichte des Qorâns). Nöldeke admitted: “In the end, I renounce exploring the mystery of the historical personality of Muḥammad.” Nöldeke is best known for his reordering of the 114 sūrahs of the Qurʾān to match what he considered to be their true historical occurrence. Nöldeke based this work on the sequence of revelation with the development of content and the origination of new linguistic styles. The Nöldeke Chronology divides the sūrahs of the Qurʾān are into four groupings: the First Meccan Period, the Second Meccan Period, the Third Meccan Period, the Medinese Period. Nöldeke considered this arrangement to be more coherent and comprehensive. Despite this attempt made by Noldëke, and later on by Schwally, Blachère, etc., Brother Bruno believes that there is no reason to give the sūrahs an order different from the one found in the accepted “vulgate.”

Le Coran, Introduction, p. 143.

Denise Masson (1901-1994), nicknamed the Lady of Marrakech, was a French Islamic scholar residing in Marrakech, Morocco. Her translation of the Qurʾān was published in the Bibliothèque de la Pléiade, 1967. It includes an introduction on the prophet Muḥammad and on the text Qurʾānic itself. Unfortunately her translation is entirely based on the Sīrah. Throughout his analysis, Brother Bruno refers to Denise Masson’s translation of the Qurʾān, along with Régis Blachère’s, for they are the only recent translators who show some concern for critical methods. Masson and Blachère will only serve Brother Bruno occasionally to emphasise the inconsistencies and contradictions of the “accepted meaning.” He does not systematically compare his exegesis with theirs. You will come to understand how totally pointless this would be as you advance in Brother Bruno’s commentary.

The Book of Psalms 20:8

Some rely on chariots, others on horses, but we on the Name of Yahweh our God.

The Book of Psalms 118:10-12

10 All the nations surrounded me; in the Name of Yahweh I cut them down. 11 They surrounded me on every side; in the Name of Yahweh I cut them down. 12 They surrounded me like bees; they blazed like fire among thorns; in the Name of Yahweh I cut them down.

The Book of Psalms 124:8

Our help is the Name of Yahweh, the maker of heaven and earth.

The Gospel According to Saint Matthew 23:39

‘Blessed is He Who comes in the Name of the Lord.

Gustaf Hermann Dalman (1855-1941), born Gustaf Armin Marx, was a German Lutheran theologian, philologist and orientalist. He did extensive field work in Palestine before the First World War, collecting inscriptions, poetry, and proverbs. He also collected physical articles illustrating the life of the indigenous farmers and herders of the country. He pioneered the study of biblical and early post-biblical Aramaic, publishing an authoritative grammar (1894) and dictionary (1901), as well as other works. The theologian and translator Franz Delitzsch, who translated the New Testament into Hebrew, entrusted to Dalman the work of revising the Hebrew text.

Shmuel Ashkenazi (1922-....) born Samuel Deutsch, this Israeli philologist was an author of collections and dictionaries of proverbs and abbreviations. He was co-author of Ozar rashe tevot, a thesaurus of Hebrew abbreviations.

Dov Jarden (1911-1986) a Byelorussian-born Jewish mathematician and linguist. Specialist in Medieval Hebraic literature, he was professor at the University of Haifa, Israel. He was co-author of Ozar rashe tevot, a thesaurus of Hebrew abbreviations.

Aramäisch-Neuhebräisches Wörterbuch zu Targum, Talmud und Midrasch, J. Kauffmann, Francfort, 1901

The Book of Genesis 24:27

Blessed be Yahweh, the God of my master Abraham.

The Book of Judges 5:2

the people who bless Yahweh

The Book of Judges 5:9

My heart is with the leaders of Israel, nobles of the people who bless Yahweh.

The Book of Nehemiah 9:5

The Israelites answered with the blessing, “Blessed be the Name of Your glory […].”

The Book of Daniel 2:20

Blessed be the Name of God forever and ever.

Kurt Hruby, La notion de Berakhah dans la tradition et son caractère anamnétique, Questions liturgiques, no. 2, 1971, p. 162-165.

Theodor Nöldeke,  Geschichte des Qorans, p. 112.

Jean Starcky, Palmyréniens, Nabatéens et Arabes du Nord avant l’Islam, Histoire des religions, t. IV, p. 207.

Gn R 1:10.

Cf. Marmorstein, The Names & attributes of God, Oxford University Press, 1927, p. 57 sq.
Arthur Marmorstein (1882–1946) was a rabbi, a scholar, and a teacher. Born in Miskolc, Hungary, Marmorstein was descended from a long line of Hungarian rabbis known not only for their Talmudic learning but also for their familiarity with secular literature. He studied at the yeshivah of Pressburg and the rabbinic seminaries of Budapest and Berlin. After visiting libraries for some time in England, Italy, and France, transcribing manuscripts, Marmorstein served for six years as rabbi at Jamnitz (Jemnice), Czechoslovakia. From 1912 until his death he taught at Jews’ College, London. Marmorstein’s scholarship embraced many subjects. His initial training at the universities was in Semitics, with special emphasis on Assyriology. He was particularly fascinated by the aggadic sections of the Talmud and by liturgy. Though Marmorstein contributed to many areas of Jewish scholarship, he is noteworthy for his studies in rabbinic theology, the subject of his two important volumes Doctrine of Merits in Old Rabbinic Literature (1920) and Old Rabbinic Doctrine of God [The Names and attributes of God] (1927); both were reprinted in one volume with an introduction by R.J. Zwi Werblowsky (1968). Other important essays on rabbinic theology by Marmorstein were collected and published under the title Studies in Jewish Theology (1950). Marmorstein’s work is characterized by painstaking detail in the collection of sources, which are important for the study of rabbinic religion.

Ryckmans, Les religions arabes préislamiques, Louvain, 1951, 2e éd., p. 47.

Marmorstein, The Names & attributes of God, p. 101.

Ryckmans, Les religions arabes préislamiques, p. 47.

The Book of Exodus 33:19

“I will pronounce the Name of Yahweh; I Who grant mercy to whom I will.”

The Book of Psalms 111:4

Gracious and merciful is Yahweh.

The Book of Isaiah 49:15 +

Can a mother forget her infant, be without tenderness for the child of her womb? Even should she forget, I will never forget you.


Note from the Bible de Jérusalem, 1961.

These verses splendidly summarise the message of Hosea, Jeremiah and the Deuteronomy, which already affirmed this indefectible love of Yahweh for Israel.

The Gospel According to Saint Luke 1:78

Because of the tender mercy of our God by which the daybreak from on high will visit us.

Canon Gonzague Ryckmans (1887-1969) Belgian Arabist and professor at the Catholic University of Leuven. This is where he began his studies in philosophy and where he obtained his first doctorate in 1908. From 1908 to 1911, he continued his studies in theology and pastoral ministry at the Major Seminary at Mechlin. From there, he was sent to the École biblique de Jérusalem in 1911, in order to specialise in the field of biblical exegesis, history of the Ancient East and Oriental Languages. Upon return to Belgium in July 1914, he participated in the trench warfare as stretcher-bearer and chaplain. He was gassed while administering the Sacrament of Extreme Unction to wounded soldiers. In 1919, after the war, he obtained his doctorate in Semitic languages. The publication of his thesis put him in contact with Father J.B. Chabot who convinced him to spend a year in Paris where he met all the great French orientalists and became familiar with the Corpus Inscriptionum Semiticarum. From 1920 to 1930, he was professor of exegesis at the Major Seminary of Mechlin. In 1930, he obtained a professoriate at the Catholic University of Leuven and was entrusted with the courses of Hebrew, Aramaic, Akkadian, and comparative grammar of Semitic languages. In 1936, he became secretary of the newly founded Orientalist Institute, while acting as secretariat for the review Le Muséon. His scientific activity led him essentially in three directions: the publication of epigraphical texts, the creation of work instruments and the drafting of various synthesis, both philological and historical.

Ryckmans, Les religions arabes préislamiques, p. 48.

The Book of Exodus 34:6

Yahweh, Yahweh, a merciful and gracious God.

Jean Daniélou, Nouvelle Histoire de l’Église, Seuil, 1963, t. I, p. 103,193.

The Book of Genesis 14:18-20

18 Melchizedek, king of Salem, brought out bread and wine, and being a priest of God Most High, he blessed Abram with these words: 19 “Blessed be Abram by God Most High, the Creator of heaven and earth; 20 And blessed be God Most High, who delivered your foes into your hand.”

The Book of Exodus 34:6

Yahweh passed before Moses and cried out, “Yahweh, Yahweh, a merciful and gracious God.”

The Song of Songs (Canticle of Canticles) 2:3

As an apple tree among the trees of the woods, so is my Beloved among the young men. I sat down in His shade that I desired, and His fruit is sweet to my palate

The Book of Psalms 42:2-3

As the deer longs for streams of water, so my soul longs for You, O God. My being thirsts for God, the living God. When can I go and see the Face of God.

The Book of Psalms 63:2

O God, You are my God, for You I long!

The Book of Psalms 84:3

My soul yearns and pines for the courts of Yahweh. My heart and flesh cry out for the living God.

The Book of Psalms 119:20

At all times my soul is stirred with longing for Your edicts.

The Gospel According to Saint Mark 9:5

Then Peter said to Jesus in reply, “Rabbi, it is good that we are here! Let us make three tents: one for You, one for Moses, and one for Elijah.”

Cf. Hruby, Autour du plus ancien rituel juif, Cahiers Sioniens, Dec. 1955, p. 314, no. 29; cf. TosʿEd 3:4: “Quiconque a des disciples et dont les disciples ont à leur tour des disciples est appelé rabbi.”

The Gospel According to Saint Matthew 23:8

As for you, do not be called ‘Rabbi.’ You have but one Master, and you are all brothers.

The Gospel According to Saint John 1:38

Jesus turned and saw them following Him and said to them, “What are you looking for?” They said to Him, “Rabbi, where are You staying?

The Gospel According to Saint John 3:2

Nicodemus came to Jesus at night and said to Him, “Rabbi, we know that You are a Master Who has come from God, for no one can do these signs that You are doing unless God is with him.”

The Book of Isaiah 30:20

No longer will your Teacher hide himself, but with your own eyes you shall see your Teacher.

The Book of Jeremiah 31:33-34

33 But this is the Covenant which I will make with the house of Israel after those days, says Yahweh. I will place My law within them, and write it upon their hearts; I will be their God, and they shall be My people. 34 No longer will they have need to teach their friends and kinsmen how to know Yahweh. All, from least to greatest, shall know Me, says Yahweh.

Régis Blachère, Le Coran, Paris-Maisonneuve, t. II, p. 127.

Theodor Nöldeke, Geschichte des Qorans, p. 112-114.

Theodor Nöldeke, Geschichte des Qorans, p. 114.

Amram Gaon († 875) was a famous Gaon or head of the Jewish Talmud Academy of Sura during the 9th century. His chief work was liturgical. He was the first to arrange a complete liturgy for the synagogue. His Prayer-Book (Siddur Rab Amram), which took the form of a long responsum to the Jews of Spain, is still extant and was an important influence on most of the current rites in use among the Jews.

Published by David Hedegard, Lund, 1951, p. 38, colonne Codex Sulzberger.

The Book of Psalms 96:10

Say among the nations: “Yahweh is King! […].

The Book of Psalms 93:1

Yahweh is King, robed in majesty […].

The Book of Psalms 97:1

Yahweh is King! Let the earth rejoice, the many isles be glad!

The Book of Psalms 99:1

Yahweh is King, the nations tremble […].

The Book of Psalms 47:9

[…] Every shield belongs to Yahweh. He reigns supreme.

A. Feuillet, Études d’exégèse et de théologie biblique, Gabalda, 1975, p. 369.

The Book of Amos 5:20

Will not the day (yō·wm) of Yahweh be darkness and not light, gloom without any brightness?

The Book of Isaiah 2:12

For Yahweh Sabaoth will have His day (yō·wm) against all that is proud and arrogant, all that is high, and it will be brought low.

The Book of Isaiah 13:6-9

Howl, for the day (yō·wm) of Yahweh is near; as destruction from the Almighty it comes. Therefore all hands fall helpless, the bows of the young men fall from their hands. Every man’s heart melts in terror. Pangs and sorrows take hold of them, like a woman in labor they writhe; they look aghast at each other, their faces aflame. Lo, the day (yō·wm) of Yahweh comes, cruel, with wrath and burning anger; to lay waste the land and destroy the sinners within it!

The Book of Zephaniah 1:3

I will sweep away man and beast, I will sweep away the birds of the sky, and the fishes of the sea. I will overthrow the wicked; I will destroy mankind from the face of the earth, says Yahweh.

The Book of Malachi 3:5

I will draw near to you for judgement, and I will be swift to bear witness against the sorcerers, adulterers, and perjurers, those who defraud the hired man of his wages, against those who defraud widows and orphans; those who turn aside the stranger, and those who do not fear Me, says Yahweh Sabaoth.

The Book of Malachi 3:18-23

18 Then you will again see the distinction between the just and the wicked; Between him who serves God, and him who does not serve Him. 19 For lo, the day is coming, blazing like an oven, when all the proud and all evildoers will be stubble, And the day that is coming will set them on fire, leaving them neither root nor branch, says Yahweh Sabaoth. 20 But for you who fear My Name, there will arise the sun of justice with its healing rays; and you will gambol like calves out of the stall 21 and tread down the wicked; They will become ashes under the soles of your feet, on the day I take action, says Yahweh Sabaoth. 22 Remember the law of Moses My servant, which I enjoined him on Horeb, the statutes and ordinances for all Israel. 23 Lo, I will send you Elijah, the prophet, Before the day of Yahweh comes, the great and terrible day.

A. Feuillet, Études d’exégèse et de théologie biblique, Gabalda, 1975, p. 369.

The Book of Psalms 147:7

Sing to Yahweh with thanksgiving; with the lyre celebrate our God.

Cf. Ismar Elbogen, Der jüdische Gottesdienst in seiner geschichtlichen Entwicklung, 3rd ed., Frankfurt am Main, 1931, p. 25-26 et 125.

Heinrich Friedrich Wilhelm Gesenius (1786-1842) was a German Hebrew philologist and orientalist. He pioneered the comparative method in the analysis of Chaldean, Hebrew and Aramaic. As he was steeped in rationalism, he abandoned the religious considerations that had prevailed until then in the study of the Semitic languages. Among other things, he wrote a Hebrew Grammar (Lexicon hebraïcum et chaldaïcum, edit. Leipzig, 1847) and a commented translation of the Book of Isaiah. His Hebrew-German lexicon served as the basis for the Brown-Driver-Briggs dictionary.

The Book of Isaiah 11:8

The infant shall play by the cobra’s den, and the weaned child will stretch forth (hā·ḏāh) his hand on the adder’s lair.

Hartwig Hirschfeld (1854-1934) was a Jewish Prussian-born British Orientalist, bibliographer, and educator. Hirschfeld studied Oriental languages and philosophy and the University of Berlin. He received his doctorate from the University of Strasburg in 1878. He obtained a travelling scholarship in 1882 which enabled him to study Arabic and Hebrew at Paris. Hirschfeld immigrated to England in 1889, where he became professor of Biblical exegesis, Semitic languages, and philosophy at the Montefiore College. In 1901, he was invited to examine the Arabic fragments in the Taylor-Schechter collection. That same year, he was appointed librarian and professor of Semitic languages at Jews’ College, a position he occupied until 1929. At the same time, he became a lecturer in Semitic epigraphy at University College London in 1903, a lecturer in Ethiopic in 1906, and full professor and Goldsmid Lecturer in Hebrew there in 1924. His particular scholarly interest lay in Arabic Jewish literature and in the relationship between Jewish and Arab cultures. He is best known for his editions of Judah Halevi’s Kuzari, which he published in its original Judeo-Arabic and his studies on the Cairo Geniza. Hirschfeld also contributed articles to numerous periodicals.

The Book of Psalms 27:11

Yahweh, teach me Your path (dar·ke·ḵā); lead me on a level path because of my enemies.

Régis Blachère, Le Coran, Paris-Maisonneuve, t. II, p. 127.

The Book of Psalms 131:1

Yahweh, my heart is not proud; nor are my eyes haughty. I do not busy myself with great matters, with things too sublime for me.

The Book of Psalms 139:24

See if my path (de·reḵ-) is crooked, then lead me in the path (bə·ḏe·reḵ) that is everlasting.

The Siddur ʿAvodat Yisraël (Ritual of Israel’s Service) is the monumental edition of the Jewish Prayer Book according to the Ashkenazic rite. It was published by Seligman Isaac Baer (1825–1897), a Masoretic scholar and editor of the Hebrew Bible and of Jewish liturgy. Baer’s Prayer Book became the authoritative model for numerous editions published subsequently in the 20th century.

Seligmann Baer, Edition Schocken, Berlin, 1937, p. 99.

The Epistle to the Romans 9:22-24

22 What if God, wishing to show His wrath and make known His power, has endured with much patience the vessels of wrath made for destruction? 23 This was to make known the riches of His glory to the vessels of mercy, which He has prepared previously for glory, 24 namely, us whom He has called, not only from the Jews but also from the Gentiles.

The Epistle to the Ephesians 2:3-6

All of us once lived among them in the desires of our flesh, following the wishes of the flesh and the impulses, and we were by nature children of wrath, like the rest. But God, Who is rich in mercy, because of the great love He had for us, even when we were dead in our transgressions, brought us to life with Christ by grace you have been saved, raised us up with Him, and seated us with Him in the Heavens in Christ Jesus.

On the subject of this obscure discussion, read Blachère, t. II, p. 127, n. 7.

The Book of Psalms 51:19

My sacrifice, God, is a broken spirit; God, do not spurn a broken, humbled heart.

The Book of Isaiah 57:17-19

17 Because of their wicked avarice I was angry, and struck them, hiding Myself in wrath, as they went their own rebellious way. 18 I saw their ways, but I will heal them and lead them; I will give full comfort to them and to those who mourn for them, 19 I, the Creator, Who gave them life. Peace, peace to the far and the near, says Yahweh; and I will heal them.

The Book of Daniel 2:20

Blessed be the Name of God forever and ever.

The Book of Exodus 33:19

“I will pronounce My Name: Yahweh; I Who grant mercy to whom I will.”

The Book of Exodus 34:6

“Yahweh, Yahweh, a merciful and gracious God […].”

The Book of Psalms 111:4

“Gracious and merciful is Yahweh.”

The Book of Psalms 33:11

The plan of Yahweh stands forever, the intentions of His heart from age to age.

The Book of Psalms 119:20

At all times my soul is overwhelmed with longing for Your judgements.

The Gospel According to Saint Luke 1:50

His mercy is from age to age to those who fear Him.

The Book of Psalms 96:10

Say among the nations: Yahweh is King.

The Book of Amos 5:18 +

Woe to those who yearn for the day of Yahweh! What will this day of Yahweh mean for you? Darkness and not light!


Note from the Bible de Jérusalem, 1961.

Israel, placing its confidence in its prerogative as the Chosen people, expects God’s intervention, which can only be in its favour. Instead of this expected day of Yahweh, the prophet Amos announces the prophetic conception of the Day of Yahweh, a day of wrath, against Israel hardened in its sins: darkness, tears, massacres and terror. Numerous biblical texts on this subject point to the threat of a devastating invasion (Assyrians, Chaldeans). During the Exile, the Day of Yahweh becomes an object of hope: God’s wrath turns against all of Israel’s oppressors: Babylon, Egypt, Philistia, Edom. Thus this day marks the restoration of Israel. After the Exile, the Day of Yahweh tends to become a “judgement” that assures the triumph of the righteous and the ruin of sinners, in a clearly universalist perspective.

The Book of Isaiah 2:6-22

[…] 17 Human pride will be abased, the arrogance of men brought low, And Yahweh alone will be exalted, on that day […] 

The Book of Zephaniah 1:14-18

14 Near is the great day of Yahweh, near and very swiftly coming. Hark, the day of Yahweh! bitter, then, the warrior’s cry. 15 A day of wrath is that day, a day of anguish and distress, a day of destruction and desolation, a day of darkness and gloom, a day of clouds and thick darkness, 16 a day of trumpet blast and battle cry against the fortified cities and against the lofty battlements. 17 I will hem men in till they grope like the blind, because they have sinned against Yahweh. Their blood shall be poured out like dust, and their flesh like dung. 18 Neither their silver nor their gold shall be able to save them on the day of the wrath of Yahweh, when in the fire of his jealous wrath all the earth shall be consumed. For He shall make an end, yes, a sudden end, of all the inhabitants of the earth.

The Gospel According to Saint Matthew 25:34

Then the King will say to those on His right, “Come, you who are blessed by My Father. Inherit the Kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world.”

The Book of Deuteronomy 6:13

Yahweh, your God, shall you fear; Him shall you serve.

2 45 à déterminer

The Book of Exodus 32:18

… but the sound of alternate singing that I hear.

The Song of Songs (Canticle of Canticles) 7:1

Why would you look at the Shulamite dancing as in a double choir?

The Book of Psalms 119:33

Yahweh, teach me the way of Your laws; I shall observe them with care.

The Gospel According to Saint Matthew 7:13-14

13 Enter through the narrow gate; for the gate is wide and the road broad that leads to perdition, and those who enter through it are many. 14 How narrow the gate and constricted the road that leads to life. And those who find it are few.

The Book of Isaiah 4:3 +

He who remains in Zion and he that is left in Jerusalem will be called holy: every one marked down for life in Jerusalem.


Note from the Bible de Jérusalem, 1961.

Unfaithful Israel will be punished. Yet, because God loves His people, a small ‘remnant’ will escape the sword of the invaders. Already familiar to Amos, Isaiah picked up the theme. Having remained in Jerusalem, this Remnant, purified and henceforth faithful, will once again become a powerful nation. After the catastrophe of 587 bc, a new idea emerges: the Remnant will be found among the deportees; it is in exile that it will convert. Then God will gather it together for the Messianic restoration. After the return from the Exile, the Remnant, still unfaithful, will once again be decimated and purified. In fact, it will be Christ Who will be the true “Branch” of the new and sanctified Israel. Unlike Israel, the pagan nations will not have a “remnant.”

The Book of Deuteronomy 30:19-20

19 I call heaven and earth today to witness against you: I have set before you life and death, the blessing and the curse. Choose life, then, that you and your descendants may live, 20 by loving Yahweh, your God, heeding His voice, and holding fast to Him. For that will mean life for you, a long life for you to live on the land which Yahweh swore He would give to your fathers Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.

The Book of Psalms 27:4

One thing I ask of Yahweh; this I seek: To dwell in Yahweh’s house all the days of my life, To gaze on Yahweh’s beauty, to visit His Temple.

The Book of Psalms 90:17

May the sweetness of Yahweh our God be on us! Confirm for us the work of our hands; yes, confirm the work of our hands.

2 40 à déterminer

2 61 à déterminer

The Book of Exodus 32:10-14

10 “Let Me alone, then, that My wrath may blaze up against them to consume them. Then I will make of you a great nation.” 11 But Moses implored Yahweh, his God, saying, “Why, O Yahweh, should Your wrath blaze up against your own people, whom You brought out of the land of Egypt with such great power and with so strong a hand? 12 Why should the Egyptians say, ‘With evil intent He brought them out, that He might kill them in the mountains and exterminate them from the face of the earth’? Let Your blazing wrath die down; relent in punishing Your people. 13 Remember Your servants Abraham, Isaac and Israel, and how You swore to them by Your own self, saying, ‘I will make your descendants as numerous as the stars in the sky; and all this land that I promised, I will give your descendants as their perpetual heritage.’” 14 So Yahweh relented in the punishment He had threatened to inflict on His people.

The Book of Isaiah 5:25

Therefore the wrath of Yahweh blazes against His people, He raises His hand to strike them; When the mountains quake, their corpses shall be like refuse in the streets. For all this, His wrath is not turned back, and His hand is still outstretched.

The Book of Isaiah 9:11

Aram on the east and the Philistines on the west devour Israel with open mouth. For all this, His wrath is not turned back, and His hand is still outstretched!

The Book of Isaiah 9:16

For this reason, Yahweh does not spare their young men, and their orphans and widows He does not pity; They are wholly profaned and sinful, and every mouth gives vent to folly. For all this, His wrath is not turned back, His hand is still outstretched!

The Book of Isaiah 9:20

Manasseh devours Ephraim, and Ephraim Manasseh; together they turn on Judah. For all this, His wrath is not turned back, His hand is still outstretched!

The Book of Zephaniah  1:15

A day of wrath is that day, a day of anguish and distress, a day of destruction and desolation, a day of darkness and gloom, a day of clouds and thick darkness.

The Epistle to the Romans 1:18

The wrath of God is indeed being revealed from Heaven against every impiety and wickedness of those who suppress the truth by their wickedness.

The Epistle to the Romans 2:5-11

By your stubbornness and impenitent heart, you are storing up wrath for yourself for the day of wrath and revelation of the just judgment of God, Who will repay everyone according to his works: eternal life to those who seek glory, honour, and immortality through perseverance in good works, but wrath and fury to those who selfishly disobey the truth and obey wickedness. Yes, affliction and distress will come upon every human being who does evil, Jew first and then Greek. 10 But there will be glory, honour, and peace for everyone who does good, Jew first and then Greek. 11 There is no partiality with God.