The first book of the Hebrew Bible which covers events from Creation to the start of Israel's sojourn in Egypt.

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Who did Shelah (Judah's son) marry?

In Genesis we learn that Judah's sons Er and Onan died, and both of them were married to Tamar. Because of their deaths (and involvement with the same woman, Tamar), Judah thinks that Tamar has ...
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What is the tree of life in Proverbs 11:30?

While reading through Proverbs, I found a somewhat startling verse: Proverbs 11:30 (NIV) The fruit of the righteous is a tree of life, and the one who is wise saves lives. My immediate ...
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How does the Noah's Ark narrative relate to the Gilgamesh flood account?

How does the Noah's Ark narrative relate to other the Gilgamesh flood account? For reference, the Biblical flood account is in Genesis 6-10 and the Gilgamesh flood account is on Tablet XI. The ...
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What does it mean for a man to leave his father and mother?

Genesis 2:24 says that a man should leave his parents after marriage: Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh. Jesus ...
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What are the similarities and differences between the Genesis creation account and other creation stories of the time

(Operating under the assumption that Genesis was authored by Moses, and its intent is a polemic against other origin stories and their view of the deity at the time). The Enûma Eliš is said to have ...
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Who did Cain marry?

A man marrying his sister is clearly a sin: If a man marries his sister, the daughter of either his father or his mother, so that he sees her nakedness and she sees his nakedness, it is a ...
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Does Genesis 3:16 imply that there was pain / sorrow before the fall?

Genesis 3:16 says: To the woman he said, I will greatly multiply your sorrow and your conception; in sorrow you shall bring forth children; and your desire shall be to your husband, and he ...
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Just how overpriced was Efron's burial cave anyway?

In Genesis 23 Avraham pays 400 shekels to Efron for a burial cave for Sarah (and, later, other family members). This seems to be an enormous amount of money and Rashi suggests it's even worse than it ...
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Differences in Genesis creation stories

It is sometimes depicted that the basic argument to read "the creation story" (Genesis 1) as a non literal story are modern science and the evolution theory. But I believe that the biggest problem ...
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What do we learn from the different usages of “aman” and “batach” in the OT?

aman (Strong's H539) and batach (Strong's H982) are both used in the OT to imply some level of trust in God. And he believed (aman:H539) in the LORD; and he counted it to him for righteousness. ...
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Genesis 23 — Why does the Bible change the spelling of Ephron's name?

In Genesis 23, we learn that Sarah has died and Abraham is looking to acquire a grave for her. He approaches the children of Heth and meets Ephron the Hittite who, initially, offers his land (which ...
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Did 70 or 75 Hebrews go down to Egypt with Jacob?

Acts 7:14 states that "Joseph sent word and invited Jacob his father and all his relatives to come to him, seventy-five persons in all." This seems to contradict Deut. 10:22, Ex. 1:5; and Gen. 46:27 ...
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Before the Tower of Babel did all speak Hebrew as the original human language?

I find it fascinating that rabbinic literature suggests that Hebrew was the original human language. I have seen Christian authors also argue the same. For example, from the Jewish Encyclopedia: ...
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How can we understand “fear”?

It seems that (throughout the Bible), we have been told to "not fear" but also to "fear God". How can we understand this word "fear" in these two contexts? If this word in these two contexts carries ...
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Did Noah take two doves, or fourteen?

Continuing the response to the meta call for contradiction. In Genesis 6:18 we read the following: And I will make my covenant with you: and those that come on the ark, you and your sons and your ...
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Why is Isaac called Abraham's only son? [duplicate]

Continuing the response to the meta call for contradiction. In Genesis 22, we find the following passage: And it was after these events that the God tested Abraham; and said to him "Abraham", who ...
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Genesis 3:12: What is the underlying Hebrew word translated into English as “with me” (in KJV)?

In Genesis 3:12, is the underlying Hebrew word, translated into English as "with me" (in the KJV), supposed to be Strong's H5978 as the HCSB and HiSB suggests, or Strong's H5973 as the KJV suggests? ...
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What does Genesis 3:16 literally say?

I've noticed that sometimes words are repeated in the hebrew text. Gen 3:16 אֶֽל־ H413 to הָ·אִשָּׁ֣ה H802 Unto the woman אָמַ֗ר H559 he said הַרְבָּ֤ה H7235 I will greatly אַרְבֶּה֙ H7235 ...
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What else can “Fifteen cubits from above” in Gen 7:20 mean?

When translating Genesis, I took pains to preserve the implied flat-Earth cosmology that a naive reading suggests. One of the places where this made a big difference is in the story of Noah. Noah is ...
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Should The Creation Story in Genesis Be Understood as Metaphorical?

I have been lead to understand that the creation story of Genesis should be read as metaphorical and not literal. However, there seems to be abundant evidence that the ancients understood the story ...
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Does Genesis contain a “death sandwich”?

Recently David Musgrave of Amridge University and Gordon Rugg of Keele University presented research that suggests the entire book of Genesis contains an inclusio on the words "life" and "death". ...
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What was life like in Eden before the fall?

This question is partly in response to this question. It's clear from Genesis 2 and 3 that life in Eden was simple (2:15) and innocent (2:24). We know that Adam didn't have to work for his bread ...
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How did Biblical translators decide on cypress for the type of wood in Noah's ark?

Reading from Genesis 6:14 (NRSV): Make yourself an ark of cypress wood; make rooms in the ark, and cover it inside and out with pitch. There is a note at "cypress" which says: Meaning of ...
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When the Bible says “the world”, does that only include Eurasia and Africa?

I've heard this argument a few different times for different verses. (Unfortunately, I can't remember exactly which verses as that would strengthen this question quite a bit.) However, the argument ...
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Did Tamar marry a third time, and if so whom?

Genesis 38:26 says: וַיַּכֵּר יְהוּדָה וַיֹּאמֶר צָדְקָה מִמֶּנִּי כִּי עַל כֵּן לֹא נְתַתִּיהָ לְשֵׁלָה בְנִי וְלֹא יָסַף עוֹד לְדַעְתָּהּ: Then Judah recognized [them], and he said, "She is ...
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What is the “Water” of Genesis 1:2?

We read in the creation account: The earth was without form and void, and darkness was over the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the waters.—Genesis 1:2 ...
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How big were the nomadic clans of the patriarchs?

According to the book Genesis, 70 people came down with Jacob to dwell in Egypt after contact was made with Joseph: And the sons of Joseph who were born to him in Egypt were two souls; all the ...
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How did Yaakov hear about Dinah?

Genesis 34 tells about Shechem's rape of Dinah and the events that follow. 34:5 says that Yaakov heard ( שָׁמַע) about this (and didn't act immediately). He didn't hear it from Dinah because she ...
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Is the territory of the Negeb considered part of the wilderness?

Genesis 13:1 and 20:1 both record Abraham traveling to a region called the Negeb (or Negev depending on the English translation). 13:1 - So Abram went up from Egypt, he and his wife and all that ...
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Is there something significant about Avram's tactics in rescuing Lot?

Genesis 14 describes the war of four kings against five kings and the capture of Lot, and then describes how Avram mounted a rescue mission: וַיִּשְׁמַע אַבְרָם, כִּי נִשְׁבָּה אָחִיו; וַיָּרֶק ...
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Is the name Israel intended to be ambiguous?

Jacob is renamed Israel by God as explained in this passage: Jacob was left alone. And a man wrestled with him until the break of dawn. When he saw that he had not prevailed against him, he ...
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What is the significance of Methuselah's name?

I've heard that Methuselah's name was given to him by Enoch in response to a prophecy concerning the flood. Since he seems to have died in the year of the flood (according to the Masoretic and ...
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Was Ishmael a teenager or a child when he and Hagar were sent away by Sarah?

When Sarah sent Hagar and Ishmael away in Genesis 21, Ishmael is referred to several times as a child: 15When the water in the skin was gone, she put the child under one of the bushes. 16Then she ...
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Is LXX “Enoch pleased God” a reasonable idiomatic translation of Hebrew “Enoch walked with God”?

The Septuagint translates the Hebrew phrase וַיִּתְהַלֵּךְ חֲנֹוךְ אֶת־הָאֱלֹהִים "Enoch walked with God," from Genesis 5:22 as εὐηρέστησεν δὲ ενωχ τῷ θεῷ "Enoch pleased God." I would have ...
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Was Moses the probable author of Genesis?

I've been operating under the assumption that Moses was the author the book of Genesis (or at least the recorder of a bunch of oral traditions). This document suggests a different view. ...
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What does “invoke the name of the LORD” mean in Genesis?

The phrase "call upon the name of the LORD" turns up occasionally in Genesis: Genesis 12:8 (ESV) 8  From there he moved to the hill country on the east of Bethel and pitched his tent, with ...
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Who did Lamech kill?

I also asked this here, but I think it fix better in Biblical Hermeneutics after thinking about it. Genesis 4:23-24 NIV 23 Lamech said to his wives, “Adah and Zillah, listen to me; wives of ...
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Why was a chapter division placed at the end of Genesis 1, rather than between 2:3 and 2:4?

It's pretty well universally accepted that Genesis 1:1 - 2:3 represent one view of the story of creation and 2:3 - 25 a second. And yet, when Stephen Langton instituted his chapter scheme in the ...
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Is El-Shaddai “Sky God” where Sky==Breasts?

I found the name "El-Shaddai" mysterious, but while going over Genesis, found the following passage (Gen 49) Wikisource translation From the god of your fathers, and he will help you, and the ...
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Why is Beer-Sheva' called Beer-Sheva'?

There is a place in Israel called Be-er-Sheva', which is given two different stories to justify the name. The word Be-er means well, as in a well of water, and the word Sheva means "seven" or more ...
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Can Enoch's hermeneutical approach be determined?

This is related to Jack's hemeneutical approaches And follows Abel's hermeneutic Enoch is the second on the list of faithful. Can we determine a plausible hermeneutic that explains Enoch's 'pleasing ...
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What does it mean when God separated light from darkness?

Genesis 1:4 NIV God saw that the light was good, and he separated the light from the darkness. God separated the light from the darkness. I don't get this part. Does it mean that light and ...
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Why didn't Joseph try to contact his father from Egypt?

Then Joseph could not restrain himself before all those who stood by him; and he cried, "Cause every man to go out from me!" And there stood no man with him while Joseph made himself known unto ...
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Isaac's Blessing of His Sons

Let's first mention several verses of the Book of Genesis: Isaac loved Esau, because he was fond of game; but Rebekah loved Jacob. (Gen. 25:28) When Esau was forty years old, he married ...
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Is there an implied connection between Abraham's circumcision and his fertility?

God establishes a covenant between Himself and Abram while simultaneously instituting the practice of circumcision in Genesis 17:3-14 (NJPS): Abram threw himself on his face; and God spoke to him ...
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Does base-10 numbering in Genesis 4:24 argue against the Wiseman hypothesis?

This question is a bit esoteric. Looking at numbers in the Bible I noticed this story about one of Cain's decedents: And Lamech said to his wives, “Adah and Zillah, hear my voice; O wives of ...