[b-hebrew] Genesis 1:2 - And the earth was without form, and void

Harold R. Holmyard III hholmyard at ont.com
Fri Apr 14 09:33:09 EDT 2006

Dear Charles,

>  > HH: I think so. Why would we understand that light existed in verse 1
>>  when God creates light in verse 3?
>It is interesting to note in Isaiah 45:7 that God created (bara) darkness
>and formed (asah) light. Thus giving grammatical support that light
>pre-exixted darkness and was "formed" into that light which was good for

HH: I happen to be reading a commentary on Isaiah 40-55 right now, 
and Isa 45:7 is evidently talking about light and darkness in terms 
of good and evil. It is not an historical statement so much as a 
providential one. The verbs are not perfects but participles. 
Although participles could refer to the original creation, that is 
probably not what they are doing in Isa 45:7, which reflects on the 
judgments God has brought on Israel and the blessings He is bringing.

HH: You must mean that darkness pre-existed light, but I don't think 
we have to assume that darkness was formed into light. First, I don't 
think Isa 45:7 has to refer to the original creation because darkness 
and light are symbolic of judgment and blessing elsewhere in Isaiah. 
The light in Genesis 1 could have been a new creation ("let there be 
light"), not necessarily something from pre-existing material.

Harold Holmyard

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