Gen 2:4

Michael Hildenbrand hildenbr at Haas.Berkeley.EDU
Mon Aug 14 19:23:08 EDT 2000


Peter,
	The question does not hinge on one's position regarding creation.  
The question hinges on linguistics.  At 2:4 YOM is qualified with the
added preposition "B" and 2:4 fits well with the other usages that you
mention below.  BDB makes a clear distinction.  Thus, there is *no*
contradiction between 2:4 and chapter 1, since it is an entirely different
usage.

Michael

 On Mon, 14 Aug 2000, Peter Kirk wrote:

> This verse is a key one for those of us who seek to argue against six day
> creationism while also holding to the authority of the Bible. If "yom"
> always means one day, which is a key part of the creationist argument, then
> 2:4 contradicts chapter 1. But as creationists also generally hold to the
> infallibility of the Bible text, they have to insist that in 2:4 "yom" means
> something other than one day, which then undermines their own arguments that
> the six days of creation are literal 24 hour periods. (Any creationists out
> there prepared to answer this argument?)
> 
> But I think we will find that there are many places in the Hebrew Bible
> where "beyom" means "at the time" in a fairly general sense when the
> reference is to more than a single day. For example Gen. 35:3: Jacob's
> distress did not last just one day, and this cannot refer to the vision at
> Bethel being literally on the same day as Jacob fled from Esau as Bethel is
> more than one day's journey from Beersheba (28:10,11) and anyway a new day
> began at sunset. In Leviticus 14:2 "beyom" precedes a description of
> ceremonies which take eight days.
> 
> Peter Kirk
> 
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: "Tony Costa" <tmcos at hotmail.com>
> To: "Biblical Hebrew" <b-hebrew at franklin.oit.unc.edu>
> Sent: Monday, August 14, 2000 12:40 PM
> Subject: Gen 2:4
> 
> 
> > Dear Friends,
> >
> >   I was wondering about Gen 2:4 in relation to Gen 1. Gen 1 gives the
> > chronological sequence of the creation account as six days. Gen 2:4 makes
> > reference to "in the day" (BYoM) that God created the heavens and the
> earth.
> > It seems to capsulize the whole creation into one day. I also noticed a
> > number of translations render the phrase "In the day" as "at the time"
> > (Goodspeed, Moffatt, Jerusalem Bible) Is the contrast between 6 days in
> Gen
> > 1 and the mention of "in the day" (singular) a result of the dual
> authorsip
> > of Gen 1 as the work of the Elohist editor and the Gen 2:4 reference the
> > work of the Priestly editor or simply an acceptable literary device? Any
> > comments would be appreciated. Many thanks.
> >
> >                                            Tony Costa, B.A.
> >                                            University of Toronto
> > ________________________________________________________________________
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