Masculine, Feminine Verb/Noun

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John Hapgood | Forum Activity | Posted: Mon, Apr 23 2018 11:03 AM

In Gen 1:1 the word for "was" (Strong's 1961) is shown as a verb, perf, 3rd, fem, but all the other uses of that word in Gen 1 seem to all be masculine.

What's up with that? ;)

It's the root of Yâhovah (3068) meaning "to be"

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EastTN | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Apr 23 2018 12:35 PM

John Hapgood:

In Gen 1:1 the word for "was" (Strong's 1961) is shown as a verb, perf, 3rd, fem, but all the other uses of that word in Gen 1 seem to all be masculine.

Are you thinking of Gen. 1:2? "The earth was..."?  If so, I think it's simply a matter of subject/verb agreement.  Since the subject of the verb, "earth," is a feminine noun, the feminine form of the verb is used.  Had the subject been masculine, "Moses" for instance, then a masculine form of the verb would have been used.

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Jack Caviness | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Apr 23 2018 1:35 PM

EastTn is correct here.

What I found interesting in researching this question is that while the word translated earth in Gen 1:2 is normally feminine, it is occasionally rendered with masculine verbs. Hence, some authorities list it as a common noun, and Logos tags it as common.

"…more rarely masc., as Gen. 13:6; Isa. 9:18, especially when a land is put for the inhabitants, Isa. 26:18; 66:8)."

 Wilhelm Gesenius and Samuel Prideaux Tregelles, Gesenius’ Hebrew and Chaldee Lexicon to the Old Testament Scriptures (Bellingham, WA: Logos Bible Software, 2003), 81.

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John Hapgood | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Apr 23 2018 2:52 PM

Hmmmm, In Gen 1:1 "God" is tagged as both common and masculine and I don't know what that means :o) but these replies have been helpful.

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EastTN | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Apr 23 2018 3:33 PM

John Hapgood:

Hmmmm, In Gen 1:1 "God" is tagged as both common and masculine and I don't know what that means :o) but these replies have been helpful.

The underlying Hebrew word there is Elohim.  While it's masculine plural in form, it's used in a singular sense in reference to Yahweh (as we see in Gen. 1:1).  It's also used in a plural sense of pagan gods.  My guess - and this is really just a guess - is that at times it's used to refer collectively to pagan pantheons that include both gods and goddesses, and that's why FaithLife has tagged it as "common."

For what it's worth, the lexicons I checked listed it as masculine plural, which fits with the form of the word.

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