How important is the little word ‘and’?

 

The King James Bible Church

HARLEY HITCHCOCK
PO Box 310 Mt Ommaney
Australia 4074
e:
Hitchcock1611@gmail.com

 

“How important is the little word ‘and?”

  2012 The King James Bible Church

Which of the following accounts is true?

Account 1: 

“In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.” (Gen 1:1)

 

And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters.” (Gen 1:2)

 

Account 2:

“In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.” (Gen 1:1)

 

Then satan was given rule and reign on the earth but he rebelled against God. So God destroyed this original creation with a flood. (Gap Theory insert)


And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters.” (Gen 1:2)

 

Well I believe the 2nd account is correct and I have Bible verses and other evidence to support it!

 

Let’s put it this way. A furniture van driver pulls up to the front door and tries to unload all the items into the house – but he can’t, because the front door is locked and there is no way in. So he has to drive off even though the furniture he has for delivery is really attractive.

 

Now this story has similarities to the Gap Theory, for if there is no gap, it will be of no consequence as to what evidence there is, as there will be no place to insert it. Like the van driver’s situation, if the house is locked, there is no place to deposit the furniture. 

Now, as to which of the above accounts is true, centres around the little Hebrew word “waw” - pronounced “vav”.

 

I don’t understand?

Let’s start from scratch.

 

In the Hebrew language, the conjunction “waw” is a word that can mean “and”, “but”, “now” or “then”, and indeed, has a number of other meanings, depending upon the context and the type of “waw” used.

 

Now according to Hebrew lexicons, there are around twelve possible ways to use “waw”, however broadly speaking there are two broad categories into which this word can be placed:

 

Category 1: The waw disjunctive

Category 2: The waw consecutive

 

Category 1: The waw disjunctive

The easiest way to remember what the waw disjunctive does, is that it describes a noun (or a non-verb), and in this case, it describes the noun “earth”.

In Gen 1:2, we have

1 In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.

 

2 And (waw) the earth was without form, and void;…”

 

The waw disjunctive here, is a Hebrew literary device used to explain and elaborate the previous sentence. In this case, verse 2 is merely describing the conditions of the earth when it was first created in verse 1.

 

What’s all this mean then?


Firstly, it’s as if you can place brackets around verse 2, as the waw disjunctive begins a parenthesis which is an explanation of the already complete sentence of verse 1:

 

“In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth. (Gen 1:1)

(And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters.) (Gen 1:2)


Secondly, verse 2, simply being a further description and elaboration upon the condition of the earth of verse 1, is not a separate event.

 

Thirdly, all this shows that there is no time gap between Gen 1:1 and 1:2. 

 

So what?

It means that we can take Ex 20:11 at face value as follows:

 

For in six days the LORD made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: wherefore the LORD blessed the sabbath day, and hallowed it.” (Ex 20:11)

 

It says what it means and means what it says, in that everything was made in six days, as set out in Genesis chapter one – from the first word in Gen 1:1 right through to the last word of Gen 1:31.

 

In short, the use of the waw disjunctive at the start of Gen 1:2 does not indicate something following on in a time sequence from Gen 1:1, as this would have been indicated by a different Hebrew construction, called the waw consecutive.

 

Category 2: The waw consecutive

The use of this literary device indicates that some actions in a sequence will follow.

 

The following would be a practical everyday example by saying “I went to town and I bought some clothes and I caught the bus home.” Here are a series of actions, performed one after each other, over a period of time.

 

Now in the Genesis creation account, we have the waw consecutive first used at the start of the 3rd verse as follows:

2  “….the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters.

3 And God said, Let there be light: and there was light.” (Gen 1:2b-3).

 

To help with understanding, you can put the phrase “then” in brackets as follows:

 

“….the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters.

3 And (then) God said, Let there be light: and there was light.” (Gen 1:2b-3).

 

Here we have God’s action of the creation of light, coming after the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters.

 

It is to be noted, that the waw consecutive “and” (then) is used repeatedly in most verses in the Genesis chapter one, and often used more than once in many of its verses.

 

For example:

It used twice in v.3:

“And (then) God said, Let there be light: and (then) there was light.” (Gen 1:3)

 

It is used twice in v.4:

And (then) God saw the light, that it was good: and (then) God divided the light from the darkness.” (Gen 1:4)

 

It is used three times in v.5:

And (then) God called the light Day, and (then) the darkness he called Night. And (then) the evening and the morning were the first day.” (Gen 1:5)

 

It is used twice in v.6:

And (then) God said, Let there be a firmament in the midst of the waters, and (then) let it divide the waters from the waters.” (Gen 1:6)

 

Through Moses, God uses the waw consecutive, and not the waw disjunctive, to show the sequence of separate creation actions that occur over six days.

Do we need the Hebrew grammar to explain this to us?

No, we have something better, and it’s called English, and that means, we can take comfort from the fact that it’s the plain reading of God’s words that “… giveth understanding unto the simple.” (Ps 119:130).

 

Just as God says “I have not spoken in secret from the beginning …” (Is 48:16), we can be assured there are no cryptic or hidden meanings, as the Gap Theory would have us believe. God’s word does not say one thing while meaning something else.

 

We have further evidence where “Jesus answered him, I spake openly to the world; I ever taught in the synagogue, and in the temple, whither the Jews always resort; and in secret have I said nothing.” (Jn 18:20)

 

Indeed, we are not as the Roman Catholics, Mormons or SDA’s, that would take God’s plain words and give them secret meanings.

 

Conclusion:

 

“THE WAW DISJUNCTIVE,

PLACED AT THE START OF GEN 1:2,

CLEARLY SHOWS

THAT A GAP DOES NOT EXIST.”


For more information on The Gap Theory, you may wish to get further tracts, and in particular, the one called

 

“The Gap Theory and its roots in Freemasonry, Gnosticism and Hindu Cosmic Cycles”

 

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Australian Bible Ministries, PO Box 5058, Mt. Gravatt East, 4122 Qld, Australia
www.AustralianBibleMinistries.com