Monday, March 25, 2013

The Long Kiss Goodnight

As David crosses the Jordan, he offers his loyal ally Barzilai a position in his court.  Barzilai rejects, saying, “I am eighty years old… I can’t tell good from bad, or taste what I eat and drink.”  I.e., I’m getting older and losing my head, so I won’t be much good to you.  David kisses him and sends him off.  In Tanach (Bible,) a kiss is always the final time two people see one another, as with Ruth and Naomi in the Book of Ruth, and Amasa later in Sefer Shmuel, and many other examples.

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