[b-hebrew] Genesis 3:15 and order of ideas

Heard, Christopher Christopher.Heard at pepperdine.edu
Wed Dec 22 13:41:15 EST 2004

On 12/22/04 6:51 AM, "Harold R. Holmyard III" <hholmyard at ont.com> wrote:
> HH: Even if the ancient Jews did understand about women producing
> eggs, that is not chiefly what Lev 12:2 concerns, I think. It refers
> to a woman conceiving and bearing a child. Obviously a woman could
> produce eggs but not conceive; producing eggs does not automatically
> lead to giving birth. So the relevant point probably was, in in many
> other texts, that she conceived and bore. The Hiphil of ZR( here
> would seem to include the implanting of the male seed in the wall of
> the uterus.

How can this be, when the subject of the hiphil of ZR( is the female, and no
mention is made of the male? In the MT of Lev 12:2 the woman "sows the
seed." It seems more likely to me that the use of ZR( here and in Num 5:38
is simply a relatively obscure (within our surviving texts) idiom for a
woman conceiving a child. Of course she needs a man's help to do it, but we
don't get to import the male into the _syntax_ when he is _syntactically_
nowhere in sight.


R. Christopher Heard
Assistant Professor of Religion
Armstrong Fellow in Religion
Pepperdine University

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