Thursday, April 27, 2017

21st Century Bible Hebrew -- all kinds of imperfect

Genesis 1:3
ג וַיֹּאמֶר אֱלֹהִים יְהִי־אוֹר וַיְהִי־אוֹר:
Translation:     Gd said Let light exist and light existed.
The syntax you see in the above verse is typical for narrative imperfect.
Vav plus imperfect as one word, followed by the subject, is standard for narrative imperfect.
Never never forget this. Unless the subject is understood from the surrounding context, the subject will come after the narrative imperfect.
If there were no vav we would have a possible true future use of the imperfect, implying that the events have not yet occurred, but we can tell that this is not the case BECAUSE of the syntax.
A future use of the imperfect does not use vav, and the syntax is subject + verb, unless there is an adverb, and then the adverb comes first just like verse 1.
There’s a third possibility but we won’t see an example of that until chapter 2 which is who knows how far away.
But teacher, you’re saying, there are two more things in there that start with yod just like the imperfect. Are those peh yod verbs or are they imperfect?
The first one is jussive and the second one is a special verb form discussed by Dr. Cook.
The jussive is a form of imperative but it’s 3rd person.
I’m going to stop there because this leads to two important discussions.
© Patricia Jo Heil, 2013-2018 All Rights  Reserved

No comments:

Post a Comment