How could there be light on day one when the sun is not created until day four?

En Hakkore

Well-known member
The word לְנֶפֶשׁ is the word נֶפֶשׁ prefixed by "lamed" לְ with a non-vocal shewa and has the meaning "to" indicating an achievement described
- by נֶפֶשׁ חַיָּה. [ seghol vowel pattern noted - indicating singular ]

"nephesh the living"

The KJV translates this as "a living soul".

On the other hand, the phrase "formless and void"
תֹהוּ וָבֹהוּ in 1:2 isn't prefixed with the "lamed" לְ with a non-vocal shewa.
.
Now we're getting somewhere... :) Indeed, the predicate noun in 2:7 is marked by ל whereas the pair of predicate nouns in 1:2 is not. Understanding ל simply as the preposition 'to' overlooks how it functions in combination with other words such as the verb היה. This is the most common way in Hebrew to express the idea of becoming: היה plus ל prefixed to the predicate noun. This is why I have from the start of our dialogue months ago until now stressed the importance of learning the language in order to avoid all sorts of problems that myopic word studies cause in translation and exegesis. Your interlocutor rattled off a number of passages purportedly in support of translating 'was' in Gen 1:2 as 'became' to bolster the gap theory without realizing how the grammar of all but one of them refutes it. The exception is Gen 19:26, as noted previously, and we can examine this one in more depth on your return next weekend... in the meantime, have a good vacation.

Kind regards,
Jonathan

PS - The adjective "living" in 2:7 is anarthrous just like the noun it modifies, not articulated as you suggest above with "nephesh the living".
 

inertia

Super Member
Now we're getting somewhere... :) Indeed, the predicate noun in 2:7 is marked by ל whereas the pair of predicate nouns in 1:2 is not. Understanding ל simply as the preposition 'to' overlooks how it functions in combination with other words such as the verb היה. This is the most common way in Hebrew to express the idea of becoming: היה plus ל prefixed to the predicate noun. This is why I have from the start of our dialogue months ago until now stressed the importance of learning the language in order to avoid all sorts of problems that myopic word studies cause in translation and exegesis. Your interlocutor rattled off a number of passages purportedly in support of translating 'was' in Gen 1:2 as 'became' to bolster the gap theory without realizing how the grammar of all but one of them refutes it. The exception is Gen 19:26, as noted previously, and we can examine this one in more depth on your return next weekend... in the meantime, have a good vacation.

Kind regards,
Jonathan

PS - The adjective "living" in 2:7 is anarthrous just like the noun it modifies, not articulated as you suggest above with "nephesh the living".

Genesis 19: 26

וַתַּבֵּט אִשְׁתּוֹ, מֵאַחֲרָיו; וַתְּהִי, נְצִיב מֶלַח.

"But his wife looked back behind him, and she became a pillar of salt."
 

En Hakkore

Well-known member
Genesis 19: 26

וַתַּבֵּט אִשְׁתּוֹ, מֵאַחֲרָיו; וַתְּהִי, נְצִיב מֶלַח.

"But his wife looked back behind him, and she became a pillar of salt."
Welcome back. OK, so there is no ל prefixed to the predicate noun (in this case a construct chain comprised of two nouns). Why then is "became" an acceptable translation here but not in Gen 1:2? I've highlighted two letters... they have individual functions with respect to the verbs they are prefixed to, but how are they also functioning together in the sentence?

Kind regards,
Jonathan
 

inertia

Super Member
Working on it with a lexicon and the text...

וַתַּבֵּט
And look

אִשְׁתּוֹ
His (its) woman

מֵאַחֲרָיו
Behind him (it) --> אַחֲרָיו ( after him (it) )

וַתְּהִי
And there it was or [ And "be" = וַ + תְּהִי ]

נְצִיב
pillar or pile


מֶלַח
salt

( I will have to jump ahead to chapter 10 for construct chains. )
 

inertia

Super Member
Working on it with a lexicon and the text...

וַתַּבֵּט
And look

אִשְׁתּוֹ
His (its) woman

מֵאַחֲרָיו
Behind him (it) --> אַחֲרָיו ( after him (it) )

וַתְּהִי
And there it was or [ And "be" = וַ + תְּהִי ]

נְצִיב
pillar or pile


מֶלַח
salt

( I will have to jump ahead to chapter 10 for construct chains. )

Looking somewhat closer at:
וַתְּהִי
And there it was or [ And "be" = וַ + תְּהִי ]
-
This is a waw-consecutive imperfect form of the
הָיָה (haya) verb; however, it has a meaning that provides a perfect-completed action. Therefore, "And be" isn't acceptable in my simple translation attempt above. From Whitefield*, both nouns "pillar" and "salt" in this construct sequence act similar to "of " which doesn't exist in Hebrew. Apparently, there are fifteen other verses using haya translated as "became" when it is not followed up by a prepositional phrase or prefix.

It was also noted that in Genesis 3:22 הָיָה is translated as "has come to pass". Whitefield stated that this is an appropriate translation for this verse.

.........
* R. Whitefield, "Reading Genesis One comparing Biblical Hebrew with English Translation", page 47, R. Whitefield Publisher, San Jose, California, second printing 2004
 

En Hakkore

Well-known member
Looking somewhat closer at:
וַתְּהִי
And there it was or [ And "be" = וַ + תְּהִי ]
-
This is a waw-consecutive imperfect form of the
הָיָה (haya) verb; however, it has a meaning that provides a perfect-completed action. Therefore, "And be" isn't acceptable in my simple translation attempt above.
Correct. I would also point out that an impersonal subject is also unacceptable, whether related to the (masculine) noun נציב that follows or not. Note that the verb תהי is feminine --- its subject is the woman/wife (אשה) of the previous clause. I will say that there is something very important in your reflection above as it concerns translating the verb as "became"...

From Whitefield*, both nouns "pillar" and "salt" in this construct sequence act similar to "of " which doesn't exist in Hebrew. Apparently, there are fifteen other verses using haya translated as "became" when it is not followed up by a prepositional phrase or prefix.

It was also noted that in Genesis 3:22 הָיָה is translated as "has come to pass". Whitefield stated that this is an appropriate translation for this verse.

.........
* R. Whitefield, "Reading Genesis One comparing Biblical Hebrew with English Translation", page 47, R. Whitefield Publisher, San Jose, California, second printing 2004
If what you have summarized of Whitefield's view on the verb היה in Gen 3:22 is accurate, his grasp of Hebrew is not very good. Could you please cite (or formulate yourself if he doesn't offer it) a complete translation of the verse and see if it makes any sense with "has come to pass" as the translation for that verb...

Kind regards,
Jonathan
 
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inertia

Super Member
Correct. I would also point out that an impersonal subject is also unacceptable, whether related to the (masculine) noun נציב that follows or not. Note that the verb תהי is feminine --- its subject is the woman/wife (אשה) of the previous clause. I will say that there is something very important in your reflection above as it concerns translating the verb as "became"...

Indeed.

If what you have summarized of Whitefield's view on the verb היה in Gen 3:22 is accurate, his grasp of Hebrew is not very good. Could you please cite (or formulate yourself if he doesn't offer it) a complete translation of the verse and see if it makes any sense with "has come to pass" as the translation for that verb...

Kind regards,
Jonathan

Genesis 3:22 was provided as an example in the text for further examination. The specific verse in the discussion was Exodus 9:24.
(Citation provided in the previous post.) Page detail - see above
 
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En Hakkore

Well-known member
Genesis 3:22 was provided as an example in the text for further examination. The specific verse in the discussion was Exodus 9:24.
(Citation provided in the previous post.) Page detail - see above
So your summary of Whitefield's comments concerning Gen 3:22 was incorrect... he does not suggest (at least not on this page) that the verb היה in this verse should be translated "has come to pass". That said, I disagree with his claim that "became" cannot be conclusively excluded in Gen 1:2 and his method of examining cases of the feminine form of the verb as if that has any bearing on the matter clearly reflects the rudimentary level of his explorations. Self-published works are really something you should avoid...

Kind regards,
Jonathan
 

inertia

Super Member
So your summary of Whitefield's comments concerning Gen 3:22 was incorrect... he does not suggest (at least not on this page) that the verb היה in this verse should be translated "has come to pass".

Incorrect?

Rereading my response:

It was also noted that in Genesis 3:22 הָיָה is translated as "has come to pass". Whitefield stated that this is an appropriate translation for this verse.

Whitefield stated that הָיָה in Genesis 3:22 "has come to pass" is an appropriate translation for this particular verse. He disagrees with the KJV translators here.

That said, I disagree with his claim that "became" cannot be conclusively excluded in Gen 1:2 and his method of examining cases of the feminine form of the verb as if that has any bearing on the matter clearly reflects the rudimentary level of his explorations. Self-published works are really something you should avoid...

Exodus 9:24 is used because there are three forms of "haya" employed in a single passage.

וַיְהִי בָרָד--וְאֵשׁ, מִתְלַקַּחַת בְּתוֹךְ הַבָּרָד: כָּבֵד מְאֹד--אֲשֶׁר לֹא-הָיָה כָמֹהוּ בְּכָל-אֶרֶץ מִצְרַיִם, מֵאָז הָיְתָה לְגוֹי.

The verse also shows that "hay'eta" הָיְתָה is translated as "became". In his study, Whitefield uses "had become" in order to emphasize the Qal perfect completed-action meaning of the word. I don't have the attitude that a simple mention of the feminine gender of the word in any way supports its KJV translation. My attitude is that his study here simply provides word specifics for education purposes for an English-speaking audience.

Note: Whitefield supports the YLT version of Genesis 1:2. Here the YLT translates
הָיְתָה as "hath existed". Translations that use the word "became" in translating Genesis 1:2 are not correct.

"the earth hath existed waste and void, and darkness is on the face of the deep, and the Spirit of God fluttering on the face of the waters,"

...

About lamed and hay'eta: (page 48 of the text)




Exodus 16:13 (KJV)

"And it came to pass, that at even the quails came up, and covered the camp: and in the morning the dew lay round about the host."

וַיְהִי בָעֶרֶב--וַתַּעַל הַשְּׂלָו, וַתְּכַס אֶת-הַמַּחֲנֶה; וּבַבֹּקֶר, הָיְתָה שִׁכְבַת הַטַּל, סָבִיב, לַמַּחֲנֶה.
__
 
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En Hakkore

Well-known member
Whitefield stated that הָיָה in Genesis 3:22 "has come to pass" is an appropriate translation for this particular verse. He disagrees with the KJV translators here.
My apologies as I see Whitefield references Gen 3:22 twice, the second occurrence I missed on my perusal last night. My initial criticism therefore stands and would invite you to use "has come to pass" in this verse for the verb and render it sensible. While your source is correct that the KJV rendering fails to adequately capture the perfected action, his alternative makes no sense in context. It should be translated "has become". My overall evaluation remains... his approach is rudimentary and detrimental to beginning students of Hebrew because of this. Let's get back to Gen 19:26 --- why is "became" here the proper translation? From what I can see, Whitefield will be of no help to you on this matter...

Kind regards,
Jonathan
 

inertia

Super Member
SImple: God was the LIGHT.
Nice. :cool:

Still, the subject is about physical creation.

"And God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light. God saw that the light was good, and he separated the light from the darkness. God called the light “day,” and the darkness he called “night.” And there was evening, and there was morning—the first day." (Genesis 1:3-5)

Compare:

"In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. Through him all things were made; without him, nothing was made that has been made." (John 1:1-3)

Because everything was made by God including electromagnetic energy (light), God was not the light in Genesis 1:3.

Earth and light_credit Chinese National Space Administration.JPG
Darkness and light simultaneously


That said, He is the light of mankind.

"In him was life, and that life was the light of all mankind." John 1:4

___________
 
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inertia

Super Member
My apologies as I see Whitefield references Gen 3:22 twice, the second occurrence I missed on my perusal last night. My initial criticism therefore stands and would invite you to use "has come to pass" in this verse for the verb and render it sensible. While your source is correct that the KJV rendering fails to adequately capture the perfected action, his alternative makes no sense in context. It should be translated "has become". My overall evaluation remains... his approach is rudimentary and detrimental to beginning students of Hebrew because of this. Let's get back to Gen 19:26 --- why is "became" here the proper translation? From what I can see, Whitefield will be of no help to you on this matter...

Kind regards,
Jonathan

Yes, "has become" is a good translation.

Here is one sensible way:

"And the LORD God said, " Since it has come to pass that the man is like one of us, knowing good and evil, he must not be allowed to stretch out his hand and take also from the tree of life and eat, and live forever."

I will get back to Genesis 19:26 after completing Chapter ten.

___
 

En Hakkore

Well-known member
Yes, "has become" is a good translation.

Here is one sensible way:

"And the LORD God said, " Since it has come to pass that the man is like one of us, knowing good and evil, he must not be allowed to stretch out his hand and take also from the tree of life and eat, and live forever."
Of course, you had to add the words noted above and make some other significant revisions throughout, including leaving a couple words untranslated... that really doesn't count. My point, I trust, has been made... Whitefield's claim about how the verb היה should be translated in this verse is flawed.

Kind regards,
Jonathan
 

En Hakkore

Well-known member
I will get back to Genesis 19:26 after completing Chapter ten.
I presume this is a reference to Hebrew Construct Chain in Pratico and Van Pelt. If so, you won't encounter the grammatical feature for understanding what's happening syntactically in Gen19:26 related to the translation of היה until Waw Consecutive (chapter 17, assuming they are numbered the same in the edition you have).

Kind regards,
Jonathan
 

inertia

Super Member
I presume this is a reference to Hebrew Construct Chain in Pratico and Van Pelt. If so, you won't encounter the grammatical feature for understanding what's happening syntactically in Gen19:26 related to the translation of היה until Waw Consecutive (chapter 17, assuming they are numbered the same in the edition you have).

Kind regards,
Jonathan

Thanks for the "heads up". (lots, no, oodles of memorization)

One - step - at - a - time
 

Harry Leggs

Well-known member
No they are not. The comment to which you replied was my engagement with (1) your summary of three interpretations of the relationship between Gen 1:1-2 and (2) your question about how there could be light on the first day if the sun was not created until the fourth day. As I correctly pointed out, there is no necessary connection between these two issues. For example, one could hold to a summary interpretation and at the same time claim that the sun was created by the deity on the first day but its light did not pierce a global cloud cover until the fourth day.


I agree, but this has nothing to do with the two issues in your initiating post to which I addressed my comment (see above).


I agree, but the musings of first-century Christian authors are irrelevant to a proper understanding of Genesis 1, which was written many centuries earlier in a different historical and cultural context. You are advocating a canonical reading whereby later texts are permitted to influence the meaning of earlier texts so that the end result is a harmonious anthology... this unity is forced and superficial, allowing the exegete to evade all manner of tensions and distort the plain meaning of one or the other of two texts that are both ostensibly revered. This approach is thus rightly rejected by historical critics who are interested in what the original authors actually intended to convey, not supporting their own theological presuppositions.


Further to my critique above, the author of Genesis 1 whose text is here under discussion did not share your particular interest in or ideas about so-called material origins, nor had he any idea that his account would one day become the initial text in an anthology known as 'the Bible'. It goes without saying that most authors intend their work to be read not only by their contemporaries but by future generations... that wish does not include, however, for future generations to reinterpret (read: misinterpret) their work, which is the result of the hermeneutic you espouse in which the text is subordinated to both contemporary scientific data and your particular interpretations of later texts within a diverse anthology that includes Genesis 1.


That you embrace any form of "concordism" is problematic. There is no scientific discovery that can or should make one's understanding of an ancient text "disastrous" if that interpretation is driven solely by a desire to understand its ancient author's intended meaning. That you feel the way you do is evidence of the driving assumptions I called out in the first paragraph of my previous response... you care little to nothing about what the author of Genesis 1 actually intended to convey, rather you care about making sure the text harmonizes to whatever degree you are comfortable -- call it "soft concordism" or whatever you like -- with current scientific knowledge and your theological commitment to creation ex nihilo. To achieve this you flagrantly disregard what the text actually says, for example, about the sun being made on the fourth day, claiming instead it was made prior to even the first creation day... this is a complete misreading of the text, as I previously pointed out.

Time permitting, I will respond to your other post tomorrow...

Kind regards,
Jonathan
Great posts. Luv this sentence.

This approach is thus rightly rejected by historical critics who are interested in what the original authors actually intended to convey, not supporting their own theological presuppositions. :geek: Had to laugh.
 

inertia

Super Member
Great posts. Luv this sentence.

This approach is thus rightly rejected by historical critics who are interested in what the original authors actually intended to convey, not supporting their own theological presuppositions. :geek: Had to laugh.

So, as @En Hakkore explained, do you believe that the bible was heavily influenced by ancient near eastern (ANE) mythology, and that New Testament authors did not understand Hebrew beliefs about creation, and that ancient Hebrews believed that matter exists eternally as God does?

Creation ex materia, instead of creation ex nihilo...


 

JosephLeo

New Member
Genesis 1:1-3 – Is the passage a sequence of events or a summary?
_______________________________________________________________________

“How could there be light on day one when the sun is not created until day four?” [1]

Biblically, the first creation day was set in motion with God saying “Let there be light”. Here, the time between God’s command, and created light that propagates to the atmosphere is unstated. It may have gradually increased in radiance or it may have arrived at its maximum level of intensity. What remains is stated in verse five where night coexists with the day.

When there is energy from the big bang, you'll have heat, and when have you have heat, you'll have light. When you rub two sticks together, you'll have heat and smoke from the friction, give enough time, you'll have fire and light.

So, let there be light doesn't mean the Sun. It doesn't say, let there be Sun, it says let there be light. The full completion of the Sun will come later on day four. Remember, the core of the earth is a glowing ball of hot molten metal. So, there's your light.
 
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