Is there a gap of time between Genesis 1:1 and Genesis 1:2? Aren’t Genesis 1 and Genesis 2 two different, conflicting accounts of creation? These are two questions that are brought up frequently at AOI seminars. I recently spoke with Hebrew scholar Oliver Blosser (Ph.D., a professor at the University of Wisconsin, Hebrew scholar, Near East historian, and theologian) about these subjects.
“The Jewish people have a basic outline of how they tell a story, an outline that is used throughout the Bible. In Genesis 1:1 we see a summary of the Creation account. In Genesis 1:2 through Genesis 2:3 you find the overview of the seven days of the Creation week. Whatever is most important is put at the end of the account, in this case the Creation of man. Genesis 2:4 through Genesis 2:28 is an overview of man’s Creation. ”
“In Genesis 1 the Hebrew name for God is ’elohiym’ (el-o-heem), a name denoting the power and might of God … what He speaks comes into existence. In Genesis 2 the Hebrew name for God is ’Y@hovah’ (yeh-ho-vaw), God’s personal name – showing He wants a personal relationship to man.”
When asked about the supposed gap between Genesis 1:1 and Genesis 1:2, Dr. Blosser responded, “Genesis 1:1 and Genesis 1:2 are joined by the English word ‘And’ (in some translations.) However, in the Hebrew the two are joined by the Hebrew letter vav for which there really is no English translation. The use of a vav shows that the narrative is continuous … grammatically there can be no gap between the two. Those who insist there is a gap there apparently do not know or understand the Hebrew language.”