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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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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4answers
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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 ...
13
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2answers
655 views

Why did Abel keep flocks if man wasn't supposed to eat flesh til after the Flood?

Per Genesis 9:3, man is given the animals as food after the flood. A reasonable implication of that statement is that prior to this, man was supposed to be vegetarian. That said, Genesis 4:2 clearly ...
6
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2answers
334 views

Is the ESV rendering “My Spirit shall not abide in man forever” in Genesis 6:3 accurate?

I am reading through Genesis in the ESV for the first time and was struck by some unfamiliar wording in Genesis 6:3. It reads: "My Spirit shall not abide in man forever, for he is flesh: his days ...
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7answers
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Why does the Bible say that Abraham sacrificed his “only-begotten son”?

Why does the Bible say that Abraham sacrificed his "only-begotten son" (Heb. 11:17, Gen. 22:2) despite the fact that Isaac had a step-brother Ishmael who was 14 years older than Isaac and was in fact ...
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1answer
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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 ...
14
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2answers
830 views

Does the original Hebrew support the NLT of Genesis 6:3?

Genesis 6:3 refers to when God set humans' lifespans to (approximately) 120 years. However, the NLT (the translation I prefer) has a slightly different translation for the 120-years part. Genesis ...
9
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2answers
932 views

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. ...
6
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217 views

How does the Genesis account of the Tower of Babel compare with other traditions about the tower?

I'm aware there are number of accounts of the Tower of Babel in Midrash, from the Islamic traditions, Kabalah, Josephus and the Jubilees. For the most part, these accounts seem to derive from ...
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1answer
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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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3answers
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What was Er's sin?

In response to this question asked by JonEricson. Genesis 38:6-11 (NJPS): Judah got a wife for Er his first-born; her name was Tamar. But Er, Judah’s first-born, was displeasing to the Lord, and ...
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1answer
806 views

What was Onan's sin?

Genesis 38:6-11 (NJPS): Judah got a wife for Er his first-born; her name was Tamar. But Er, Judah’s first-born, was displeasing to the Lord, and the Lord took his life. Then Judah said to Onan, ...
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4answers
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Does Genesis's creation account depict creation “ex nihilo”?

I had once heard that one of the remarkable thing about the creation account in Genesis, as compared to the other creation accounts of the cultures of the surrounding area is that God creates the ...
10
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2answers
194 views

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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4answers
666 views

Does Gen 1:1 refer to day 1 or the entire 6 days of creation?

A natural reading of Gen 1:1 with it's immediate context is that it is part of the first day of creation 1 In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth. 2 The earth was without form and ...
12
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3answers
10k views

Jacob's name is Israel. So why is he still called Jacob?

When born, Jacob is given the name "Jacob" meaning, "trickster, supplanter, heel grabber." After he wrestles at Jabbok, he is renamed "Israel" meaning "strives with God." However, after this ...
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4answers
877 views

Was Noah absolutely blameless or relatively good?

This is the line of Noah.—Noah was a righteous man; he was blameless in his age; Noah walked with God.—Noah begot three sons: Shem, Ham, and Japheth. The earth became corrupt ...
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2answers
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At what point did Abraham know he was talking to God in Genesis 18?

At the start of the story in Genesis 18, Abraham does not seem to know who the three men are: Looking up, he saw three men standing near him. As soon as he saw them, he ran from the entrance of ...
5
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1answer
305 views

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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6answers
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What are the “household gods” Rachel stole from Laban?

When Jacob flees from Laban, Rachel steals his household gods. When Laban had gone to shear his sheep, Rachel stole her father’s household gods. Genesis 31:19 (NIV) Jacob seems pretty ...
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6answers
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Why does Noah curse Canaan?

Genesis 9:23-25 NLT, reads, Then Shem and Japheth took a robe, held it over their shoulders, and backed into the tent to cover their father. As they did this, they looked the other way so they ...
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2answers
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Why did Abraham stop at ten in Genesis 18:32?

Genesis 18:16-33 recounts the story, "Abraham Pleads for Sodom" (NIV). When conversing with God, Abraham asks God if He would destroy the city if there were 50 righteous people in it. God replies No, ...
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4answers
732 views

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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3answers
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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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3answers
296 views

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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8answers
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Were the Nephilim in Genesis 6 aliens?

Could Genesis 6:1-4 be talking about aliens? (ESV): When man began to multiply on the face of the land and daughters were born to them, the sons of God saw that the daughters of man were ...
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2answers
406 views

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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3answers
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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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2answers
169 views

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 ...
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9answers
4k views

What does “image” in Genesis 1:26-27 mean?

Genesis 1:26-27 (ESV) 26Then God said, "Let us make man in our image, after our likeness. And let them have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over the ...
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1answer
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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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1answer
215 views

Should we read Melchizedek in Genesis 14 to be metaphorical?

Genesis 14:17-20 (NJPS): When he returned from defeating Chedorlaomer and the kings with him, the king of Sodom came out to meet him in the Valley of Shaveh, which is the Valley of the King. And ...
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4answers
613 views

What is the relationship between the “Adversary” in Job and the serpent in Genesis?

An individual named the Adversary appears in Job 1:6-12 (NJPS): One day the divine beings presented themselves before the Lord, and the Adversary came along with them. The Lord said to the ...
5
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2answers
641 views

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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7answers
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How did mankind's way of relating to God change in Genesis 4:26?

At the end of Chapter 4 of Genesis there is a statement in verse 26, "It was then that men began to invoke the Lord by name." Other translations have "call on the name" or "worship the LORD by name". ...
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1answer
770 views

Does Genesis say where evil came from? [closed]

The first hint of evil in the Tanakh seems to come in Genesis 3:1 (NJPS): Now the serpent was the shrewdest of all the wild beasts that the Lord God had made. He said to the woman, “Did God really ...
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3answers
288 views

Can we use “linguistic fingerprints” to identify different authors of the Bible?

I read, what was to me, quite an interesting blog post about different authors' contributing to different parts of the bible measured by analysing "linguistic fingerprints": For millions of Jews ...
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3answers
270 views

How to interpret Genesis 25:1-2?

In Genesis 25:1-2 we see: "Abraham had taken another wife, whose name was Keturah. She bore him Zimran, Jokshan, Medan, Midian, Ishbak and Shuah". But even before that in Genesis 17 it says: ...
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4answers
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What is the significance of “east” in the Scriptures?

There seems to be some significance to the east in the Scriptures. The garden is planted in the east of Eden Cherubim are stationed on the east side of the Garden of Eden Parts of the burnt offering ...
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1answer
93 views

Gift or slaughter [closed]

Often we hear that the Bible contains lots of stories without indicating if the actions were good or bad. When Jacob returned home in Gen 33, he sent the crowds ahead of him (Gen 32:13-21). By what ...
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1answer
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The meaning of “stranger and sojourner” in Genesis 23:4 and Leviticus 25:23

In Genesis 23:4 Abraham is in conversation with the residents of Heth and says: "I am a stranger and a sojourner with you. Give me a possession for a burying place with you, that I may bury my ...
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4answers
1k views

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 ...
9
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3answers
577 views

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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3answers
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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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3answers
235 views

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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4answers
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Is there an English equivalent for Nephilim of Genesis 6:4?

Genesis 6:4 (NIV)Emphasis added The Nephilim were on the earth in those days—and also afterward—when the sons of God went to the daughters of humans and had children by them. They were the heroes ...
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4answers
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What was Eve's role in relation to Adam?

The role of Eve in relation to Adam is dramatically changed by the interpretation of the sections I have bolded below, from Genesis 2:18: The verse as most people learned it: And the Lord God ...
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4answers
637 views

Which hermeneutical approaches support a literal interpretation of the Creation account?

I had always been told that a day meant 24 hours, but a systematic theology textbook I read disputed that pretty well. (Please do not address this item in particular. This isn't the question I'm ...