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

Yigal Levin leviny1 at mail.biu.ac.il
Sun Apr 23 17:15:04 EDT 2006

Yigal Levin:
>> The idea that the laws of nature were somehow different before the Flood 
>> is
>> a well-known way of dealing with the "discrepancies" between a literal
>> reading of Genesis and "natural history". In fact, such claims are made 
>> in
>> the Talmud. They are not, however, based upon the biblical text. Gen. 8
>> does NOT claim that there were no seasons before the Flood, only that the
>> seasons would continue henceforth uninterrupted.
Dave Washburn:
> But if that's the case, why mention them at all?  It seems extraneous. 
> The
> only reason I can see for bringing it up is because these people didn't
> really know what they were and God was telling them to be prepared for
> seasonal changes.

Because the Flood itself was an interuption of the natural seasons. The rain 
began on the 17th of the second month (Iyyar - April-May), a time of year at 
which any rain would have been unusual. To Noah and co., the world had been 
turned on its head. God promissed them that this would never happen again.

>> Gen. 9 does NOT claim that
>> there were no rainbows before the Flood, only that from that point, we
>> should consider the rainbow to be a sign of the covenant between God and
>> humanity.
> Granted, though the language of "setting" it in the sky does kind of hint 
> that
> there hadn't been one before.
>> The "mist" (if that is indeed what "ed" means) mentioned in Gen.
>> 2 reffers to the primeveal state of the Garden of Eden, NOT to the whole
>> period up to the Flood.
> Actually, it does say there was no rain but rather the mist (or whatever 
> it
> was), and nothing between then and chapter 6 says otherwise, so unless you
> have some textual evidence of a change from that to rain, it's reasonable 
> to
> conclude that it did in fact continue that way until the Flood.  I see no
> basis in the text for your conclusion about this.

I think that the Garden is certainly "special", so that nothing that was 
true there can be used as a preccedent for the rest of the book.

>> And as far as eating meat - Gen. does not say that
>> people did not eat meat before the Flood, only that God now regulated how
>> meat is to be eaten.
 Once again, I think you're pulling this in out of left field.  2:16 says 
> man was to eat plants, and nothing between there and chapter 9 contradicts
> that principle.  Verse 3 says "Every moving thing that lives shall be food
> for you; and as I gave you the green plants, I give you everything." (RSV)
> This suggests that eating meat is a new thing: just as I had already given
> you plants to eat, now I give you meat, as well.  And the only way this is
> "regulated" there is, don't eat meat with the blood in it.  Not much in 
> the
> way of regulation.  The clear implication is that eating meat is a novel
> idea.
> Bear in mind that I'm not a "young-earth" creationist.  But I'm afraid 
> your
> objections above don't stand up to scrutiny of the text before us.
Yigal Levin

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