[b-hebrew] Question about Gen 1:1-2

Steve Miller smille10 at sbcglobal.net
Wed Jul 22 23:42:56 EDT 2009

> From: Marie Casale
> Sent: Wednesday, July 22, 2009 9:09 PM
> Greetings to the members:
> I am new to B-Hebrew and have joined you to ask a question.
> I have been studying the Gap Theory which says there are billions of years
> of time inserted in between Genesis 1:1 and 1:2. At the end of these
> billions of years, the earth suffered a great cataclysm (due to Satan's
> rebellion and fall) that left the earth without form and void.  They say
> the word WAS in verse 2 could be translated BECAME.  Thus the earth BECAME
> without form and void.  It was not originally created that way.
> Do you use the same Hebrew word 'hayah' to mean both 'was' and 'became'
> and have to figure out which one should be there by the context of the
> sentence?  Or does the word 'hayah' have to have a 'le' with it in order
> for it to mean 'became'?  Can we KNOW whether the word in Gen 1:2 is
> definitely 'was' or 'became'?

[Steve Miller] 'hayah' certainly can mean "became" without use of the
preposition 'le' following it. All you have to do is search for the word
"became" or "become" in an English translation and look at the underlying
Hebrew. Examples are Gen 3:22; 19:26

In my opinion, based on looking at all the 'hayah's in Genesis, in Biblical
Hebrew, 'hayah' always means 'became', or at least that there is some
process involved. If no process is involved then Biblical Hebrew does not
use a verb.

> Hope you can shed some light on this because I have read several on-line
> articles and nothing I have read seems give a definite answer either way.

[Steve Miller] I don't think that the 'haya' alone makes it definite either
way. H. C. Leupold says that 'haya' always indicates a process to get from
subject to predicate, but did not believe in a gap between Gen 1:1 and 2. He
takes Gen 1:2 to mean, "And the earth came into being without form and
void." (I think that is strange. It is like saying that God didn't have that
much to do with the earth coming into being. It just came into being.)

Bible chronology goes back to day one (not "first") day in Gen 1. When did
that day begin? It began in Gen 1:3 when God said, Let there be light. What
happened before Gen 1:3, is outside of Bible Chronology. 

-Steve Miller
But when One stronger than Satan comes upon him and overcomes him, He takes
away his whole armor in which he had trusted and distributes his spoil.
(Luke 11:22)

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