Results 1 to 9 of 9

Thread: Hebrew language and Genesis 1

  1. #1
    tWebber
    Join Date
    Jan 2014
    Faith
    Christian
    Gender
    Male
    Posts
    543
    Amen (Given)
    94
    Amen (Received)
    140

    Hebrew language and Genesis 1

    I was told that according to the Hebrew language Genesis 1 should read "at the beginning" and not "in the beginning."

    True or not?

    Thanks.

  2. #2
    Troll Magnet Sparko's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2014
    Faith
    Christian
    Gender
    Male
    Posts
    51,884
    Amen (Given)
    5236
    Amen (Received)
    22962
    I don't think either of those actual words are in the original Hebrew. Looking at the interlinear of the passage here:
    https://www.studylight.org/desk/inte...3=str_nas&ns=0

    It only has "Beginning" with a Hebrew translation. I think the other words are just added in English to make it understandable

    But then I don't know Hebrew.

  3. #3
    See, the Thing is... Cow Poke's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2014
    Location
    The Republic of Texas
    Faith
    Christian
    Gender
    Male
    Posts
    60,424
    Amen (Given)
    13032
    Amen (Received)
    27575
    I've never heard that before -- what's supposed to be the significance?
    "Neighbor, how long has it been since youve had a big, thick, steaming bowl of Wolf Brand Chili?

  4. #4
    tWebber lee_merrill's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2014
    Location
    Durham, NC
    Faith
    Christian
    Gender
    Male
    Posts
    1,331
    Amen (Given)
    449
    Amen (Received)
    246
    Well, there's a missing word, but it's "the" that's missing, actually. And the Hebrew prefix "בְּ" can mean "in" or "at" (or a number of other things). So literally it would be "In beginning" or "At beginning", either would probably work, but "In the beginning" is smoother English.

    Blessings,
    Lee
    "What I pray of you is, to keep your eye upon Him, for that is everything. Do you say, 'How am I to keep my eye on Him?' I reply, keep your eye off everything else, and you will soon see Him. All depends on the eye of faith being kept on Him. How simple it is!" (J.B. Stoney)

  5. #5
    See, the Thing is... Cow Poke's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2014
    Location
    The Republic of Texas
    Faith
    Christian
    Gender
    Male
    Posts
    60,424
    Amen (Given)
    13032
    Amen (Received)
    27575
    Quote Originally Posted by lee_merrill View Post
    Well, there's a missing word, but it's "the" that's missing, actually. And the Hebrew prefix "בְּ" can mean "in" or "at" (or a number of other things). So literally it would be "In beginning" or "At beginning", either would probably work, but "In the beginning" is smoother English.

    Blessings,
    Lee
    So, Lee, can you think of any reason somebody would zero in on that? Why it would be an issue?
    "Neighbor, how long has it been since youve had a big, thick, steaming bowl of Wolf Brand Chili?

  6. #6
    tWebber lee_merrill's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2014
    Location
    Durham, NC
    Faith
    Christian
    Gender
    Male
    Posts
    1,331
    Amen (Given)
    449
    Amen (Received)
    246
    Quote Originally Posted by Cow Poke View Post
    So, Lee, can you think of any reason somebody would zero in on that? Why it would be an issue?
    We may note John 1:1, which is "In beginning" as well, now there is some debate as to which reading in Gen. 1:1 is correct:

    Source: Expositor's Bible Commentary

    In defense of the traditional view (that berēʾsṯ is in the absolute state [i.e. "In the beginning"]), it can be said that rēʾṯ along with several other adverbials, does occur in the absolute state without an article (e.g., Isa 46:10; cf. Konig, Syntax par. 294g). Thus the argument that the article must be with berēʾṯ for it to be absolute does not hold in every case. There are other arguments that berēʾṯ should not be read as an absolute (see Westermann, pp. 94ff.), but none of them is sufficient to stand against the traditional view without the central grammatical argument of the absence of the article in berēʾṯ just referred to. An example such as Isa 46:10, then, is crucial in that it shows that the article is not necessary for the absolute state.

    © Copyright Original Source



    If "the" is not appropriate here, then the reading would be:

    Source: EBC

    When God set about to create the heavens and the earththe world being then a formless waste God said, Let there be light

    © Copyright Original Source


    So that little word does make a difference! But given the argument above, and the echo in John 1:1 (where I cannot find a reference that translates this other than "In the beginning", and the Septuagint of Gen. 1:1 has the same phrase as John 1:1) I would say that "the" does belong.

    Blessings,
    Lee
    Last edited by lee_merrill; 02-14-2020 at 02:49 PM.
    "What I pray of you is, to keep your eye upon Him, for that is everything. Do you say, 'How am I to keep my eye on Him?' I reply, keep your eye off everything else, and you will soon see Him. All depends on the eye of faith being kept on Him. How simple it is!" (J.B. Stoney)

  7. #7
    tWebber
    Join Date
    Jan 2014
    Faith
    Christian
    Gender
    Male
    Posts
    543
    Amen (Given)
    94
    Amen (Received)
    140
    Quote Originally Posted by Cow Poke View Post
    I've never heard that before -- what's supposed to be the significance?
    It came from my Pastor in a speech he made at a Bible Study class. I'm trying to find out why he thought it important. I asked a Jew who teaches Hebrew and he said:

    It's ambiguous. Rashi suggested repointing the text to read "in the beginning of God's creating..." I tend to like it. That would be translated as "when God began to create..."

    I don't see that it makes any difference at all.

  8. #8
    tWebber
    Join Date
    Jan 2014
    Faith
    Christian
    Gender
    Male
    Posts
    543
    Amen (Given)
    94
    Amen (Received)
    140
    OK, guys I finally heard from my Pastor and this is what he said:

    "I was explaining that Jewish Midrash states that God created twice before the current creation we have. Once with just love and once with just law. Our creation has both."

    Notice it is now Midrash and not Hebrew Language.

    Anyone know what he is talking about? Thanks

  9. #9
    tWebber
    Join Date
    Jan 2014
    Faith
    Christian
    Gender
    Male
    Posts
    543
    Amen (Given)
    94
    Amen (Received)
    140
    This a link to my Pastor's thoughts.

    http://www.israelnationalnews.com/Ge...e=1&item=22827

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •