Hot answers tagged

13

Firmament The primary reason the word "firmament" has been updated in modern translation (using the term "changed" is incorrect - new translations start with the original language, not the KJV text) is because language changes. While the word was an ordinary one in 1611 meaning something like The arch or vault of heaven overhead, in which the clouds ...


9

The Hebrew text of Gen. 1:1-2 states, א בְּרֵאשִׁית בָּרָא אֱלֹהִים אֵת הַשָּׁמַיִם וְאֵת הָאָרֶץ ב וְהָאָרֶץ הָיְתָה תֹהוּ וָבֹהוּ וְחֹשֶׁךְ עַל פְּנֵי תְהוֹם וְרוּחַ אֱלֹהִים מְרַחֶפֶת עַל פְּנֵי הַמָּיִם First, notice that v. 2 commences with a disjunctive vav, i.e. וְהָאָרֶץ. One website explains the disjunctive relationship as follows: The ...


7

Not poetry, but Prologue Gordon J. Wenham notes in The Word Biblical Commentary Vol. 1: Genesis 1-15 on page 46 ...[Genesis 1:1–2:3] stands apart from the narratives that follow in style and content and makes it an overture to the whole work. On page 50 he continues: Extrabiblical creation stories from the ancient Near East are usually poetic, ...


7

There are several creation accounts in antiquity from two main areas in the fertile crescent; Babylon/Sumer and Egypt. I will attempt to summarize and compare/contrast points of each creation myth with Genesis, so I will apologize at the outset to readers for the long answer. I'm sure the OP did not realize what a tall order this was, and as curiousdannii ...


6

I think the key to translating Genesis 1:2 is not וְר֣וּחַ (we·ruach, "spirit"), but rather מְרַחֶ֖פֶת (me·rachepheth, "moved"). Better understanding the verb will help us better understand the subject. rachaph (the root) is a rare verb. It occurs just three times in the Old Testament: here, Deuteronomy 32:11: Like an eagle that stirs up its nest, ...


6

They fly across the expanse of the heavens. The word פָּנִים pānîm (lit. "faces") is used in "frozen union" with certain prepositions to form constructions that function syntactically as prepositions, linking a verbal idea to a noun.1 That is, they allow a noun to specify something about the nature of the verb. This is no different from other prepositional ...


5

Hebrew ṣelāʽ (thus the correct transliteration) is a clear cognate of Akkadian ṣēlu and Arabic ḍilʽ and ḍilaʽ, all of which primarily mean “rib”, but are also metaphorically used to mean “side”. They are very widely attested in Akkadian and Arabic and leave no doubt as to their meaning. It is a basic Semitic noun for a body part. From a linguistic point of ...


4

The almost universal consensus of critical scholars is that the two creation accounts are from two different sources. The account in Genesis 1:1-2:4a is generally attributed to an anonymous source now known as the Priestly Source. The second account, in Genesis 2:4b-25 is generally attributed to an anonymous source now known as the Yahwist. Leon R. Kass ...


4

I recently answered a similar question, so I will repost my answer here with a few edits: The problem with your interpretation of the word "void" is that it proceeds from a false premise of "Creatio Ex Nilho" (Creation from Nothing) which was a concept that arrived on the scene with Platonic philosophy. This is not to say that this philosophy is wrong (...


4

The Hebrew word for man is אָדָם (adam) or אּישׁ (ish). The "out of man" (מֵאִ֖ישׁ meish, also transliterated me’iysh) in this passage derives from the latter form. Like in Gen 2:23, ish often carries a definite connection with males (as opposed to "mankind"), but has a variety of uses. You can explore the usage of all forms of ish here and meish here. ...


3

(Continued answer. See the introduction, table of contents and the first part of this answer here.) Creation myth of Ptah The creation myth of Ptah comes from Memphis which was created as the capitol city for Egypt during the Old Kingdom period by Pharaoh Menes. During the 26th dynasty (672BCE–525BCE; the late period) of Egypt, the Shabaka stone was ...


3

(Continued answer. See the introduction, table of contents and the first part of this answer here.) Ogdoad of Hermopolis The creation myth of the Ogdoad is the oldest creation myth and It is very difficult to study because it is not contained in single volumes like all of the Babylonian myths. Instead, this myth is pieced together from multiple sources of ...


3

A theological answer would indicate that Rabbinic Jewish and early Christian thinkers did not attribute bodily form or sex to God, though most attributed male gender owing to the preponderance of typically masculine imagery and grammatical forms for God they saw in the Bible. Growing gender awareness has challenged traditional assumptions, and most Jewish ...


3

I would point out that the Hebrew text lends itself to the translation "rib." The text in Genesis 2:21 literally reads, "And he [the Lord God] took one ['aḥat] from his side [miṭṭela'] and he closed the flesh after them [taḥtennah]." The "one" would suggest a part of the side, and the "after them" (with a feminine plural suffix) would suggest that the one ...


2

The reason for translating this word as "rib" in this passage most likely has to do with Genesis 2:23 in which Adam states "This one at last is bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh" (NET). While you are correct that this word is often translated as chamber, according to the NAS Exhaustive Concordance, the NASB most often translates צֵלָע (tsela) as side ...


2

We can not do this by comparing the dates of the oldest extant manuscripts/tablets of Genesis and Enuma Elish, because all we have in both cases are copies of copies. However, we can examine the Enuma Elish story to establish what period is referred to. Leonard W. King (Enuma Elish, pages LXXII-LXXX) says of the actual tablets inscribed with portions of the ...


2

The Hebrew Phrase נִשְׁמַת חַיִּים In Gen. 2:7, it is written, And Yahveh God formed the man from the dust of the earth, and He blew into his nostrils the (נִשְׁמַת חַיִּים), and the man became a living soul. וַיִּיצֶר יַהְוֶה אֱלֹהִים אֶת הָאָדָם עָפָר מִן הָאֲדָמָה וַיִּפַּח בְּאַפָּיו נִשְׁמַת חַיִּים וַיְהִי הָאָדָם לְנֶפֶשׁ חַיָּה Whatever ...


2

Backdrop to explain my answer The opening chapters of Genesis provides an interesting framework for understanding the rest of the Bible. That is, the creation narrative of chapters 1-2 includes, within its own framework, the introduction of creation, and a "new" creation. That sounds confusing so let me explain. In Genesis 1 we're given an account of the ...


2

Church Fathers who comment on Genesis 1:11-13 - Basil, Ephraim the Syrian, Gregory of Nyssa - maintain that the vegetation brought forth appeared whole and mature in one instant; it was not simply latent in seeds waiting to germinate. The translation of this passage chooses to render the underlying Hebrew word as "sprout", which implies that some kind of ...


2

Genesis 2:5-7 actually shows a lack of any substantial passage of time. and every plant of the field before it was in the earth, and every herb of the field before it grew: for the Lord God had not caused it to rain upon the earth, and there was not a man to till the ground. -Genesis 2:5 (KJV) The emphasis is on the fact that nothing had grown as it ...


1

A belief in two independent sources leads to a modern study of Genesis along the lines described by Leon R Kass: “once we recognize the independence of the two creation stories, we are compelled to adopt a critical principle of reading if we mean to understand each story on its own terms.” (see Dick Harfield’s answer) The danger in this approach to Scripture ...


1

I believe Genesis 1:1 says... בראשית (In first [there is no definite article, just like John 1:1]) ברא (prepares) אלהים (the gods) את (a-z) השמים (the heavens/space) ואת (and a-z) הארץ׃ (the land/matter) This seems to say that there was something called "the first" which prepared all things. The only thing I've been able to come up with is that ...


1

If this question is answered with the knowledge of God found in Scripture the answer is no, the woman was not an afterthought. An all-knowing God does not have an afterthought during His work of creation (or any other time). Genesis 1 makes clear creating man and woman was a planned action. Nevertheless, it is commonly accepted among contemporary scholars ...


1

It is clear that the creation of Eve was an afterthought. It is only after God has taken Adam and put him in the Garden, and after he has given Adam instructions to look after the Garden, told him what he can eat but not to eat of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, that God decides to create company for Adam: Genesis 2:15-18: And the LORD God ...


1

There is no suggestion that the ancient Hebrews believed in the fire-breathing dragons of medieval lore, but they did believe in supernatural monsters loosely described as 'chaos monsters'. These were mythological creatures that inhabit creation stories and had to be defeated in order to bring order to the world. Behemoth literally means 'great beast' and ...


1

It seems the story of temptation can only be explained in one of three ways: a talking snake, Satan disguised as a snake, or the whole story was a creation of man. Snakes are physically and intellectually incapable of speech, yet the biblical serpent was certainly not Satan. For Satan to have used the serpent means that Satan was able to deceive God, because ...


1

As the question recognises, Hebrew poetry is very different from Western poetry and thus difficult to recognise initially. We have to look for parallel ideas, rather than rhyme and rhythm. Francis S. Collins (The Language of God: A Scientist Presents Evidence for Belief, page 140) says, "There is no question that this is a powerful and poetic narrative ...


1

I think you may be picturing the planet earth as we understand it today where the ocean water is in [huge] depressions of the surface. Viewed that way the water is in/on the earth. However, the depiction is of a preexistent bottomless sea and the dry land is in the water; the inverse. The "earth" refers to "the land". I prefer the translation "unformed and ...



Only top voted, non community-wiki answers of a minimum length are eligible