[b-hebrew] Gen 2.18

Bryant J. Williams III bjwvmw at com-pair.net
Mon Oct 29 13:31:17 EDT 2007


Dear Karl,

I would add that, in this instance, the way of telling the story is found in
that Genesis 1 gives the overall situation, while Genesis 2 gets more into the
specifics of the story. Genesis 1 describes the events of each day using Yom
with cardinal number and the phrase "evening and morning," etc., while Genesis 2
is describing in more detail the events of Day 6. In no way is it providing a
different creation story. This is paying attention to the literary genre,
grammar, rhetorical devices, etc.

Rev. Bryant J. Williams III
----- Original Message ----- 
From: "K Randolph" <kwrandolph at gmail.com>
To: <b-hebrew at lists.ibiblio.org>
Sent: Monday, October 29, 2007 3:46 AM
Subject: Re: [b-hebrew] Gen 2.18


> Anthony:
>
> On 10/28/07, A Becker <ABecker at nerdshack.com> wrote:
> > K Randolph wrote:
> >
> > > You have added to the text, a "Then ...." The text, as written, leaves
> > > open the possibility that the animals were formed after, ... or before.
> >
> >
> >
> >       I really don't see how translating the WAW as "then" is "add[ing] to
> > the text" since, as I said, the most straight forward way of understanding
> > the wayyiqtol (WYCR) in verse 19 is that the act of forming the animals is
> > temporally successive to God's concern that Adam is alone in verse 18. I
> > guess understanding a logical succession here as the RSV does with
> > "So...formed" would be equally justified. It is true, however, that
> > "then...formed" brings out the temporal succession more concretely than a
> > simple "and...formed" would. This, however, is not "adding" to the text but
> > merely bringing out what is already there.
> >
> >
> >
> > A Becker
> >
> That's where we disagree. While it is usual in narrative that what is
> related later happened later, that is not always the case—sometimes
> that which is related later happened earlier but was not mentioned
> until later, at the point at which it becomes important to the story
> line.
>
> In English, we usually indicate the prior action through verbal
> tenses. Prior action may be referenced by the context, but that is not
> common.
>
> In Biblical Hebrew, which lacked the verbal tenses to indicate the
> fact that the action was prior to the point of reference in the
> narration, depends usually on the context to indicate the sequence of
> action. In this case, the context of chapter one indicates that the
> forming of the animals occurred prior to the creation of mankind, but
> in chapter two their forming was not mentioned until where their
> existence became important to the story line.
>
> The waw here as in most narration, merely indicates a continuation of
> the narration. In *English* we sometimes use "then" to indicate a
> continuation of action, but when it is utilized to reference prior
> action, the priority of that action is indicated by verbal tense and
> usually other markers as well. That is different from Biblical Hebrew.
> Here "then" is a mistranslation. It is an addition not conveyed by the
> Hebrew text.
>
> Karl W. Randolph.
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