jvogt at dawson.net
Tue Jan 5 17:10:38 EST 1999
> From: George Athas <gathas at mail.usyd.edu.au>
> To: Biblical Hebrew <b-hebrew at franklin.oit.unc.edu>
> Cc: Biblical Hebrew <b-hebrew at franklin.oit.unc.edu>
> Subject: Re: Gen 1:1-2
> Date: January 5, 1999 2:14 PM
> Lee R. Martin wrote:
> > [...]
> > Yes, ToHu can mean chaos or vanity, but it basically connotes
> > thus uninhabitedness.
> Certainly, Lee, it does imply emptiness. However, there is a little more
nuance in the
> word. ToHU also means disordered, confused, strewn about, decrepit. The
idea is picked
> up in Isa 34:11 where ToHU is used to describe a city which has been
> warfare. It also has the connotation of something without substance, as
it is often
> used to describe idols.
> As with others, I don't think "chaos" quite captures the full meaning of
> although it does describe to some extent a portion of the meaning. I just
> we have one English word which captures all that ToHU implies.
While we do not have one English word which captures all that ToHU
decribes, we should keep in mind that Tohu vaboho works together. The pair
also comes up in Jer 4:23 where it speaks of the destruction of the
Southern Kingdom; there is more than ordinary disorder. It speaks of
disorder so that even the light from heaven is no more. Verse 25 indicates
that it is an empty place. The focus is not on creation but rather the
destruction of order. Whatever Tohu vaboho implies, it is something that is
not in keeping with the created order, whether that is nothing or chaos.
Wishing you the best:
Enjoy the warmth, we are at -43 c.
E-mail jvogt at dawson.net.
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