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Fixed verse reference. Tweaked sentence because the very first use of דַּעַת is Genesis 2:9, but 2:17 was quoted.
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Genesis 2 - Tree of Knowledge or Tree of Devotion?

דַּעַת is almost always rendered as “knowledge.” [H1847-da'ath]

And the Spirit of the LORD shall rest upon him, the Spirit of wisdom and understanding, the Spirit of counsel and might, the Spirit of knowledge and the fear of the LORD. (Isaiah 11:2 ESV)

However, some more recent translations recognize a different sense of the word:

The LORD’s spirit will rest on him — a spirit that gives extraordinary wisdom, a spirit that provides the ability to execute plans, a spirit that produces absolute loyalty to the LORD. (NET)

The JPS Tanakh translation understands the meaning in Isaiah as devotion:

The spirit of the LORD shall alight upon him: a spirit of wisdom and insight, a spirit of counsel and valor, a spirit of devotion and reverence for the LORD. (JPS)

One of the first uses of דַּעַת is at Genesis 2:

but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die.” (Genesis 2:17 ESV)

Obviously trees do not have knowledge growing on them. However, after expulsion from the Garden of Eden, trees will become a source of idolatry and a place people gather to worship false gods. [Trees in mythology] And man seems to be devoted to evil:

But the Lord saw that the wickedness of humankind had become great on the earth. Every inclination of the thoughts of their minds was only evil all the time. (Genesis 6:5 NET)

Is the tree in the Garden of Eden better understood as "the tree of devotion to good and evil"?

Revelation Lad
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