The Sign of Origin and Source
Art thou not FROM everlasting (miqqedem), O LORD my God, mine Holy One?
Habakkuk 1:12 (Spoke 13, Cycle 2)
original idea of a fountain (maqor) as a source of water (mayim)
naturally extends to signify any source or point of origin.
This links directly to the grammatical function of the Mem Prefix, which is the sign of prepositions
like out of, from, through, or because of.
God used it this way in the verse from Habakkuk above and also in many of the Alphabetic Verses, such as these four:
- AV Lam 1:13 FROM above hath he sent fire into my bones, and it prevaileth against them: ...
- AV Lam 3:38 OUT OF the mouth of the most High proceedeth not evil and good?
- AV Ps 37:23 The steps of a good man are ordered FROM the LORD: and he delighteth in his way.
- AV Ps 119:101 I have refrained my feet FROM every evil way, that I might keep thy word.
The last example – mikkol (from every) – shows Mem prefixed to kol (all) which is familiar from the
Sign of Everything (et-kol, BW book pg 89).
The Mem Prefix also signifies comparison when something differs from another.
God used it this way in two consecutive Alphabetic Verses where it is translated as "more than":
- AV Ps 119:99 I have more understanding than all (mikkol) my teachers: for thy testimonies are my meditation.
- AV Ps 119:100 I understand more than the ancients (mizqenim), because I keep thy precepts.
The idea of
meditation naturally coheres with the reflective properties of still waters.
The same idea is linked in the Alphabetic Verses below which display the interrogative KeyWords mi and mah:
- AV Ps 25:12 What man (mi) is he that feareth the LORD?
- AV Ps 34:12 What man (mi) is he that desireth life, and loveth many days ...
- AV Ps 119:97 O how (mah) I love thy law! it is my meditation all the day.
- AV Lam 2:13 What thing (mah) shall I take to witness for thee? what thing (mah)
shall I liken to thee, O daughter of Jerusalem? what (mah) shall I equal to thee, that
I may comfort thee, O virgin daughter of Zion? for thy breach is great like the sea: who (mi) can
These interrogatives combine in a very logical fashion with the other prepositional prefixes. For example, the
Lamed Prefix (sign of the prepositions to or for, BW book pg 247)
combines with mah to form lama (why?) which literally means "for what?" as in Matthew 27:46:
And about the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, Eli, Eli,
lama sabachthani? that is to say, My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?
This is a very instructive verse. It first transliterates and then translates the Hebrew for us. We
consulted it earlier to as an example of the Yod Suffix in Eli (My God, BW book pg 234).
Finally, Mem is also used as the substantive prefix to form abstract nouns from verbs.
For example, the root meaning of lamad is "to prick, to goad" (BW book pg 253).
Mem is prefixed to it to form the noun malmad (ox-goad). The basic idea is that the meaning of the
noun comes from the act indicated by the verb.