The Book of Genesis

  • The Holy Bible
  • Biblia, byblos were the words from which it came from
  • Old Testament and New Testament
  • The Word of God - it is believed that it is the word of god and it is considered to be a revelation
  • Torah - this is the old testament in the jewish faith
  • Best-seller, most read - it was translated into many different languages but it was first written in ancient Hebrew. However, it may be written in Cuneiform first instead.
  • Authors
    • It is the first book of the Pentateuch - there are five books total
    • It was written anonymously - it is possible that the author was Moses
    • Moses? - perhaps he was the author but it is not known. It happened before his time and so it is based on eyewitness accounts
    • It is thought to have first been written in ancient Hebrew
  • When was it written?
    • Genesis - beginning, birth
    • 1446 BCE to 1406 BCE
    • Israel's departure and redemption from Egypt
  • Other
    • The most important event to transpire is the creation of the world and it is also the first
  • Setting
    • The fertile Crescent
    • Eden
    • Mt. Ararat
    • Canaan - this are is now Egypt/Palestine
    • Goshen
  • Important People
    • Adam
    • Eve
    • Noah
    • Abraham - this is the patriarchal figure of the faith
    • Isaac - the son of Abraham
    • Jacob
    • Joseph - is the son of Jacob
  • Literary Devices
    • Repetition of the number 7
    • Chiasm
    • Merism - noting opposites to signify the whole (good/evil)
    • Repetition of Phrases - it was good in the beginning, etc
    • Symbolism - the rainbow a symbol for God's promise
    • Written as historical narrative with some poetic aspects
    • Toledot - this is the format in which it is told - it is told by generations
  • Themes
    • Relationship between Man and God
    • Good vs Evil
    • Divine Judgement
    • Faith is imperative
    • Creation → Fall → Redemption - > Reward
  • What to Look For
    • Motifs
    • Humans created from dust
    • Flood mythos
    • Serpent
    • Temptress
    • Other elements/archetypes that are still present in literature today
  • Notes
    • Beresheit
    • the name for the first section for the torah (in English it is called the Genesis). It is also the first word, which is in the beginning
    • 1800 BCE
    • a clan leaves the city of Ur
    • cousins, second cousins, everyone basically - roughly 200 people
    • they leave Ur and they become nomadic pastoralists - they did not really want to be a part of agriculture
    • The first written reference to these people are from the Egyptians - called them the Hebrews (Habiru)
    • They came to Egypt to escape the famine in their homeland
    • This is patriarchal and therefore we must have an older male who is in charge
    • We will call this person Abraham
    • Their religion is polythestic and they have three gods
    • El - the sky god
    • Ashtaroth - the earth mother (Ishtar - same god)
    • Their son Baal who is the sun god
    • All of the males in the clan workship El and only El (Abraham dictates this)
    • You can not go from polytheistic to monotheistic in an instant and have it surivive so it has to happen over a long period of time
    • First Commandment
    • It says that they will have no other gods before me (this is a remnant of the polytheism). Then across time it develops into monotheism
    • In a polythestic culture, you probably worship one deity more than the others and then when that does not work, you are going to switch. In monotheism, you **have to accept what is said.
    • Polythestic cultures did not really have their gods loving their people (the people were their to worship their gods)
    • The Hebrew people developed a personal relationship with their deities
    • They developed this very close relationship with God and this then transfers to Christianity and Islam
    • Christianity does not split off of Judaism for a while
    • Abraham and Sarah
    • Sarah tells her slave that she will sleep with her husband to make a baby and this is very mean
    • The name of the slave is Hagar - she does become pregnant
    • The name of the son is Ismail (Ishmael)
    • After, Sarah becomes pregnant and has a son named Isaac
    • Isaac is the favorite son and therefore all descendants come from Isaac
    • Islam views Ismail as the favorite son and therefore traces descendent from the Ismail
    • The Torah as written in Hebrew is mathematically perfect
    • The Korah as written in its original language is poetically perfect
    • Hebrew Alphabet
    • 1Aleph
    • 2Bet
    • 3Gimel
    • 4Daled
    • 5He
    • 6Vav
    • 7Zayin
    • 8Heth
    • 9Teth
    • 10Yud
    • 20Kaph
    • 30Lamed
    • 40Mem
    • 50Nun
    • 60Samech
    • 70Ayin
    • 80Pe
    • 90Tasde
    • 100Qoph
    • 200Reish
    • 300Shin
    • 400Taw
    • There are 22 basic symbols
    • Father - Aba = 4
    • Mother - Ema = 42
    • Child - yelled = 46

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