Pseudo Jonathan Genesis 1:3


At the beginning (min avella) the Lord created the heavens and the earth. And the earth was vacancy and desolation, solitary of the sons of men, and void of every animal; and darkness was upon the face of the abyss, and the Spirit of mercies from before the Lord breathed upon the face of the waters. And the Lord said, Let there be light and to enlighten above; and at once there was light. And the Lord beheld the light, that it was good; and the Lord divided between the light and the darkness. And the Lord call the light Day; and He made it that the inhabiters of the world might labour by it: and the darkness called He night; and He made it that in it the creatures might have rest.

John 1:9

New Testament

7 He came as a witness to testify about the light, so that everyone might believe through him. 8 He himself was not the light, but he came to testify about the light. 9 The true light, who gives light to everyone, was coming into the world. 10 He was in the world, and the world was created by him, but the world did not recognize him. 11 He came to what was his own, but his own people did not receive him.

 Notes and References

"... Midrash Rabbah בחכמה explains us how the targumist came to make this translation [in Genesis 1:1]. Here a connection is made between Proverbs 8:22 and Genesis 1:1 via the word ‘beginning’. Because Proverbs 8:22 says about wisdom that YHWH had said that He possessed it in the beginning of His ways, Misdrash Rabbah states that the word ‘beginning’ in Genesis 1:1 must be seen in relation to wisdom. Midrash Rabbah equates wisdom with the torah. It is likely that the connection between Genesis 1:1 and Proverbs 8:22 that we find in Targum Neofiti and the Fragment Targum, was already made before the destruction of the Second Temple. In the sequel in Targum Neofiti an indirect connection is made between the wisdom and the מימרא as the medium by which YHWH creates the world. There the מימרא is repeatedly mentioned as the medium that YHWH used when He created the world. In Targum Neofiti the מימרא is for the first time explicitly mentioned in Genesis 1:3 ... Genesis 1:1, seems to indicate that there also a connection is made with the מימרא of YHWH, who creates the world in His wisdom. On the basis of this fact it is almost impossible to conclude that there is no relationship between the prologue of the fourth gospel and the Palestinian targumim ..."

de Vries, Pieter The Targumim as Background of the Prologue of the Gospel According to John (pp. 1-24) The Free University, Amsterdam, 2002

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