Prototype Theory and Hebrew Tense/Aspect (and misc.)

peter_kirk at peter_kirk at
Sat Dec 18 14:02:06 EST 1999

Some interesting points here, but your arguments depend on:

1) the text of Exodus being assumed to be in chronological order 
(specifically 34:4 before 37:1) (and so presumably on a rejection of 

2) an understanding of 3 days in Joshua as typological;

3) astrophysics and geophysics!

So let's make it simple, as Wenham did with the flood, and look at 
Genesis 5 again. 5:6 has two WAYYIQTOLs, but these events clearly took 
place before the death of Adam in the previous verse.

Peter Kirk

______________________________ Reply Separator _________________________________
Subject: Re: Prototype Theory and Hebrew Tense/Aspect (and misc.)
Author:  <ronning at> at Internet
Date:    17/12/1999 21:27


Deut 10:3 is a good one:
wa'a`as 'aron ... wa'epsol shney luxot
I made an ark ... and I cut out two stone tablets
The chronological sequence is quite well known from Exodus, 
and it's beyond belief that anyone would have an agenda for 
changing the sequence.


The whole chronology of Josh 1-4 is pretty much impossible 
viewing all the wayyiqtols as sequential.


.. the crossing on the third day is theologically crucial 
to the narrative as it provides a typological link to the 
crossing of the Sea and the creation narratives - it was 
w.r.t. the third day of creation that dry ground came out of 
the sea (reproduced at the Red Sea and the Jordan).

If one applies the "sequential paragraph" method described 
above to Genesis 1, you are free to see that the order is 
partly logical and partly chronological; i.e. the goal of 
each "day" is accomplished sequentially, but there can be 
overlapping in the events leading up to the 
accomplishments.  I.e. you can take each "wayyomer" 
following each "nth day" as a chronological regression back 
even prior to the creation (notice the author never says 
anything happened "on" such and such a day until the 7th 
day).  When one does this, we are left with an account that 
matches what astrophysicists and geophysicists have only 
come to understand in the last few decades (yes you have to 
follow up on the clues about the days not being normal 

By the way, for believers in orthodox source criticism - 
isn't LO' +OWB of Gen 2:18 an obvious play off of the 
repeated refrain of Genesis 1 "God saw that it was good"?

Also, for those who think the flood chronology is difficult, 
I refer you to Wenham's commentary - pretty simple, 


John Ronning

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