[B-Greek] Rev. 8:9--what died?

Iver Larsen iver_larsen at sil.org
Wed Nov 15 02:17:42 EST 2006

> Thanks, Iver--the second passage, 16:3, is 100% relevant. What I need to
> know now is, were fish considered in first-century Jewish thinking to be
> "living souls", cf. PASA YUCH ZWHS (Rev. 16:3), as human beings and other
> air-breathing animals are (cf. Gen. 1:30 LXX, cf. Gen. 2:7 LXX)? I have a
> strong feeling that Jews wouldn't have seen fish and insects and crustaceans
> and mollusks and worms and so on as belonging in that category. But I can't
> remember where I learned that.
> Webb Mealy

Yes, as far as I can see "fish" would be included in the very broad category of  "living beings", at 
least for a Jew familiar with the Greek text of the creation story. The most relevant place to look 
would be when God created the marine life in Gen 1:20. Here God caused TA hUDATA to swarm with YUCWN 
ZWSWN. The same words are used in the following verse. I assume the reason for using the generic 
"living beings" rather than the specific "fish" is that God created all marine life, not just the 
fish. Notice that the specific word for fish is not mentioned until verse 26. If "fish" had not been 
included among the "living beings" in the water, they should have been listed separately in Gen 

Iver Larsen 

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