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14

Although I disagree with your presupposition that the ages are merely symbolic, I think this is a great question nonetheless. The reason I say this is that regardless of whether the ages are historically significant, we should assume they are literarily significant. The Bible is literature, and each author (or redactor) of each book has crafted his work of ...


11

According to Genesis man was already intelligent before partaking the fruit of the forbidden tree. At that time, Adam had already named the animals. And upon seeing Eve, his words take the form of Hebrew poetry. This is bone of my bone and flesh of my flesh she shall be called woman for she was taken out of man. (Note the parallelism especially ...


11

Joseph's sons were Ephraim and Manasseh, Gen. 41:51 Joseph called the name of the firstborn Manasseh: “For God has made me forget all my toil and all my father’s house.” Gen. 41:52 And the name of the second he called Ephraim: “For God has caused me to be fruitful in the land of my affliction.” These became, in a sense, Jacob's sons: Gen. ...


11

Satan is the father of Cain in that Cain acted like Satan. Genesis tells us that Adam (literally "the man") fathered Cain and Abel. Genesis 4:1 Now the man had relations with his wife Eve, and she conceived and gave birth to Cain, and she said, "I have gotten a manchild with the help of the LORD." The Hebrew grammar here shows that each step is a ...


10

Frank Luke's answer is clear enough to realize Cain is Adam's son, no question about that. I want to address something else you state: Assuming that Cain is the person that Jesus is referring to I would not assume that, nor would I argue that is correct. I take Jesus's statement as wholly referencing "the Devil" himself (just as the verse states). He ...


8

אֵ֥ת (et) is the direct-object marker in Biblical Hebrew. This is especially important in a language that is as flexible about word order as Hebrew is; without it, there wouldn't be a way to tell from grammar which noun in a noun-verb-noun construct is the subject and which is the object. (Context can disambiguate in many cases, but not all.) This word ...


8

Well, the reading of the ToB as a Ziggurat is more or less an example of the duck test: if it walks like a duck, and quacks like a duck... Stepped pyramids were essentially the only really tall built items of the ancient Near East. (Egypt is not in the field of view here.) So, if you are going to talk about a tall thing, a thing reaching towards heaven, ...


8

In two of his books (listed below), John H. Walton examines Genesis 1.1-2.3 according to its similarities to other 'creation myths' in the ancient near east (ANE from here onward), verbal cues with contemporary or related Hebrew scriptures, and so on. He doesn't go much in the way of authorship or the originally intended audience, although possibilities can ...


8

This is just by way of postscript and supplement to a (good!) answer already provided. The lists of tribes given in the Hebrew Bible/Old Testament typically are as @Niobius describes: Joseph's sons, Ephraim and Manasseh, replace both Joseph and Levi, most obviously in the tribal settlements during the "conquests" of Joshua/Judges. This is also how they ...


7

A chaism is a structure common in the Old Testament (but also found in the New Testament). It is basically text constructed in an ABCBA or ABCDCBA (or etc.) pattern. For instance, consider Luke 4 A v1-4: Jesus tempted to exercise his power over the physical world to be fed -B v5-8: Jesus tempted to usurp authority over the world --C v9-13: Jesus ...


7

The Bible consistently uses human terms to describe a non-human God. Our arms are the body part that perform most of our work, so God's work is described as being done with God's "hands". Our eyes are what we use to observe and take in information, so God's observatory faculties are called "eyes". Our mouth is the body part we use to communicate, so God's ...


7

If we translate the phrase וַיְהִי־עֶרֶב וַיְהִי־בֹקֶר (vayhi erev vayhi boker) as: "then there was evening; then there was morning" "and there was evening; and there was morning" then it reasons that 1) there was a time before the evening, and 2) Gen. 1:1-4 occur at that time before the evening. The repeated refrain, "and evening came, and morning ...


7

We cannot read NT passages into the Old Testament to explain difficulties - each passage must be understood in its own context. Otherwise I would read the second half of 2 Pet 3:8 into Genesis and say that Methuselah was almost a day old when he died. Instead, I'll give an OT example with similar wording to try to understand the meaning behind the Hebrew ...


7

Textual Evidence The text itself does not give enough information to deduce whether a volcanic eruption occurred or just a miraculous event (the literal interpretation), but commentators have long noted the similarity of this language with that of other volcano legends in early Semitic literature. The translation of 'brimstone and fire' (גָּפְרִ֣ית ...


7

These 3 enigmas or problems can only be solved if fatherhood and childhood (life) are calculated from conception forward. Otherwise the math won't work. The 3 problems above have us return to 2 key facts. Then we can resolve the math issues. -Who entered and who left the ark? -How long did the flood last? (How long was Noah on the ark such that ...


6

It means "deceived me" (or beguiled me, in some translations). The phrase is: הַנָּחָשׁ הִשִּׁיאַנִי, וָאֹכֵל. 'The serpent beguiled me, and I did eat.' The "ni" suffix on the verb is the direct object. In Biblical Hebrew (perhaps other forms too), sometimes the personal pronoun, when serving as an object, is appended to the verb. It would be ...


6

The confusion comes in part from imperfect translation. The commandment, in both Exodus 20 and Deuteronomy 5, reads as follows: לֹא-תַעֲשֶׂה לְךָ פֶסֶל, וְכָל-תְּמוּנָה, אֲשֶׁר בַּשָּׁמַיִם מִמַּעַל, וַאֲשֶׁר בָּאָרֶץ מִתָּחַת--וַאֲשֶׁר בַּמַּיִם, מִתַּחַת לָאָרֶץ. Thou shalt not make unto thee a graven image, nor any manner of likeness, of any ...


6

The Hebrew for the end of the verse is: וַתִּקַּח מִפִּרְיוֹ, וַתֹּאכַל; וַתִּתֵּן גַּם-לְאִישָׁהּ עִמָּהּ, וַיֹּאכַל. Literally: She took from its fruit, and she ate, and she gave also to her man with her, and he ate. The word עִמָּהּ is "with" ('im) with a preposition (the hei with the mapik (dot) means "her"). This is "with" as in physical ...


6

Genesis 5:32 does not say that Noah was 500 years old exactly when he had Shem, it says: And Noah was five hundred years old: and Noah begat Shem, Ham, and Japheth. (KJV) with the colon in there it disconnects the births from his age. The five hundred years is there to note when God gave him his marching orders. It shows us in concert with Genesis ...


6

In the original post Gen 11:10 is only partially cited, like this - Gn 11:10 When Shem was 100 years old, he became the father of Arpachshad… although in the OP answer, the rest of the verse is quoted: Gen 11:10 ...Shem was 100 years old, and begat Arpachshad 2 years after the flood. Of course, that end phrase ("two years after the flood") solves ...


6

(From my blog.) In Gen. 4:26, it is written, וּלְשֵׁת גַּם־הוּא יֻלַּד־בֵּן וַיִּקְרָא אֶת־שְׁמוֹ אֱנוֹשׁ אָז הוּחַל לִקְרֹא בְּשֵׁם יַהְוֶה And a son was also born to Set, and he called his name, Enosh. Then __ (הוּחַל) to call on the name of Yahveh. Many Jewish commentators asserted that the phrase הוּחַל לִקְרֹא בְּשֵׁם יַהְוֶה means that men ...


6

The question is really an issue of what kind of cosmology the authors of the various biblical books assume in the course of their writing. When we read the Hebrew scriptures, the few books that have anything to say on the subject never explicitly say 'the earth is flat'. But if we can determine the overall shape of the cosmos as the different writers ...


5

The phrasing of 'good and evil' is a figure of speech called a merism. Other merisms include: 'heaven and earth', meaning all of creation; 'ladies and gentlemen', used to address all people who are present at an event; or 'high and low', such as saying you searched everywhere you could think of. As can be seen by the examples, a merism is when different ...


5

Rashi says that the angel didn't change his name, only said that a name change would be coming. In trying to understand why he says that, I found an interesting, subtle difference in the text in the two passages. Rashi's commentary Rashi on 32:29 says (emphasis mine): no… Jacob: It shall no longer be said that the blessings came to you through ...


5

Textual Breakdown In Genesis 50:22 the text literally says: וַיְחִ֣י יוֹסֵ֔ף מֵאָ֥ה וָעֶ֖שֶׂר שָׁנִֽים1 "Joseph lived a hundred and ten years" In v. 26, an idiomatic expression is used to say the same thing. The text of Genesis 50:26 literally says: בֶּן־מֵאָ֥ה וָעֶ֖שֶׂר שָׁנִ֑ים2 "son of a hundred and ten years" This is a common idiom ...


5

This is just a brief addendum to a previous answer. The idiom אֵין מִסְפָּר (ʾên mispār) appears 16x in the Tanak: Gen. 41:49; Jdg. 6:5; 7:12; 1 Chr. 22:4, 16; 2 Chr. 12:3; Job 5:9; 9:10; 21:33; Ps. 40:13; 104:25; 105:34; 147:5; Cant. 6:8; Jer. 2:32; Joel 1:6. I wholly agree with H3br3wHamm3r81's overall conclusion. However, my own sense is that if you ...


5

Genesis 2:2 וַיְכַל אֱלֹהִים בַּיֹּום הַשְּׁבִיעִי מְלַאכְתֹּו אֲשֶׁר עָשָׂה וַיִּשְׁבֹּת בַּיֹּום הַשְּׁבִיעִי מִכָּל־מְלַאכְתֹּו אֲשֶׁר עָשָֽׂה׃ The word translated as "rest" in English, is actually the conjugated word from which we get the English word Sabbath, which actually means to "cease doing". וַיִּשְׁבֹּת or by its root: שָׁבַת ...


5

The phrase appears not only in Gen 31:42: MT ... אֱלֹהֵי אָבִי אֱלֹהֵי אַבְרָהָם וּפַחַד יִצְחָק ... = ... ʾĕlōhê ʾābî ʾĕlōhê ʾābrāhām ûpaḥad yiṣḥāq ... LXX ... ὁ θεὸς τοῦ πατρός μου Αβρααμ καὶ ὁ φόβος Ισαακ ... = ... ho theos tou patros mou Abraam kai ho phobos Isaak ... but also in a slightly variant form a few verses later, in v. 53: ESV ...


4

Genesis 4 brings us a very simple narrative of Abel bringing an offering. The text doesn't even tell us directly that the offering was sacrificed, although it is generally considered a true assumption that it was. Genesis 4:3-4a (ESV) 3  In the course of time Cain brought to the Lord an offering of the fruit of the ground, 4  and Abel also ...



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