[B-Greek] LXX Genesis 1:2 - tohu as AORATOS

Bryant J. Williams III bjwvmw at com-pair.net
Wed May 28 17:24:33 EDT 2008


Dear Al,

It may be useful to include the two other passages where the entire Hebrew
phrase of "tohu wabohu" occurs. They are Isa 34:11 and Jer. 4:23 along with Job
26:7. Regarding Gen 1:2,I would also think that there is a deliberate PUN on the
sound with "tehom." Thus, "tohu...tehom." This gives the idea of total and
complete "nothingness" and the corresponding idea of "ex nihilo."

TWOT, Vol. II, pp. 964-965, #2494"tohu," by Ronald Yongblood, gives an extended
discussion on Job 26:7 and Gen 1:2. I find it interesting the idea of
"nothingness, invisible" seems to be the intended idea behind "without form and
void." Thus, it could be construed as hendiadys or as another way of outlining
the rest of the passage in which "without form" is explained in by the first
three days giving the heavens and earth "form;" while "void" is explained in the
last three days of creation filling that "form" (See discussion in TWOT; I am
undecided).

Job 26:7 LXX, "EKTEINWN BOREAN EP' OUDEN, KREMAZWN GHN EPI OUDENOS."

Isaiah 34:11 LXX, "KAI EPIBLHQHSETAI EP' AUTHN SPARTION GEWMETRIAS ERHMOU, KAI
ONOKENTAUROI OKKSOUSIN EN AUTH;"

Jeremiah 4:23 LXX, "KAI EIS TON OURANON, KAI OUK hHN TO FWTA AUTO."

The above passages do not use AORATOS at all for "tohu."

AORATOS is found Romans 1:20; I Corinthians 1:15; Colossians 1:15-16 (parallel
with EN TOIS OURANOIS KAI EPI THS GHS); I Timothy 1:17; and Hebrews 11:27 with
the emphasis on the "invisible; that which cannot be seen."

En Xristwi,

Rev. Bryant J. Williams III

----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Albert Pietersma" <albert.pietersma at sympatico.ca>
To: "Carl Conrad" <cwconrad2 at mac.com>
Cc: "Eric S. Weiss" <papaweiss1 at yahoo.com>; "'b-greek'"
<b-greek at lists.ibiblio.org>
Sent: Wednesday, May 28, 2008 9:30 AM
Subject: Re: [B-Greek] LXX Genesis 1:2 - tohu as AORATOS



>
>
>> Jerry Reimer <Jerry at lsm.org> wrote:
>>  Seems illogical that actual invisibility could be meant by AORATOS
>> although
>> the adjective does contain this as one of its meanings. Undefined,
>> unrecognizable seems better here. Appears to a ballpark equivalent
>> for
>> Hebrew underneath and that whatever the meaning of the Hebrew
>> vorlage is (I
>> am not knowledgeable as to its meaning) should be what defines the
>> LXX
>> rendering rather than either the etymology of the Greek adjective or
>> even
>> its usual literal meaning. Is this an example of Hebrew Greek?
Are you thus suggesting that the Greek word be assigned the sense of
its Hebrew counterpart? I doubt that this is viable lexicography.
Moreover, wouldn't such a procedure logically make translating
senseless?
I should think one might better assume that a Greek word in the LXX
has the same sense it has in standard usageuntil proven otherwise.
Al
>>
>> Jerry Reimer
>>
>>
>>
>>  Eric S. Weiss
>>
>>
>>
>> ---
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>
>
> Carl W. Conrad
> Department of Classics, Washington University (Retired)
>
>
>
> ---
> B-Greek home page: http://www.ibiblio.org/bgreek
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Albert Pietersma PhD
21 Cross Street,
Weston ON Canada M9N 2B8
Email: albert.pietersma at sympatico.ca
Homepage: http://www.chass.utoronto.ca/~pietersm

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