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Genesis

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Authorship and writing
{{OldTestament}}
[[image:Viennagenesis.jpg|right|thumb|A page of the Vienna Genesis, made in sixth century Syria, with an illustration of Jacob/Israel blessing his grandsons Ephraim and Mannasseh.]][[image:creationstars.jpg|right|thumb|An icon of God creating light, in the form of the stars in the sky, on the fourth day of the Genesis creation story.]]
The '''Book of Genesis''' , also known as the '''First Book of Moses''', is the first book of the [[Old Testament]] and contains extremely old oral and written traditions of the people of Israel. The name English title, '''Genesis''' , comes from the Greek for birth and in Hebrew ''Bereishit'' which means "in translation ([[Septuagint]], LXX)<ref>LXX Septuagint—an ancient translation of the beginning"Old Testament into Greek</ref>In Hebrew the book is |בְּרֵאשִׁית (''Bereishit''), meaning "in origins"; whereas, the beginning." This Hebrew title is derived from the first word opening sentence of the Hebrew text - a method by which all five books of the Torah are named. When the Torah was book, translated into Greek "in the 3rd century BC to produce the [[Septuagint]], the name given was Γένεσις ''Genesis'', meaning beginning"birth" or "origin". This was in line with the Septuagint use of subject themes as book names. The Greek title has continued to be used in all subsequent Latin and English versions of the Bible, and most other languages.</ref>. Tradition has it that this book was mostly written by the [[Prophet]] [[Moses]] <ref>For a brief biographical sketch of Moses also read Ex. 1–6</ref> 1,300 years before [[Christ]]. The influence of Genesis over all of Holy Scripture is demonstrated by it being quoted over 35 times in the [[image:ViennagenesisNew Testament]] and hundreds of allusions appearing in both Testaments.jpg|right|thumb|A page The story line of the Vienna salvation begins in Genesis3 and is not completed until Revelation 21 and 22, made in sixth century Syria, with an illustration where the eternal kingdom of Jacob/Israel blessing his grandsons Ephraim and Mannassehredeemed believers is illustrated.]]
== Background Authorship and writing ==The author does not identify himself in Genesis begins with the story of . However, both the [[creationOld Testament]] of the world<ref> Ex. 17:14; Num. 33:2; Josh. 8:31; 1 Kin. 2:3; 2 Kin. 14:6; Ezra 6:18; Neh. 13:1; Dan. 9:11, 13; Mal. 4:4)</ref> and the fall of [[Adam and EveNew Testament]] and the subsequent<ref>(Matt. 8:4; Mark 12:26; Luke 16:29; 24:27, quite sinful, history of 44; John 5:46; 7:22; Acts 15:1; Rom. 10:19; 1 Cor. 9:9; 2 Cor. 3:15) </ref> ascribe this composition to [[Moses]] <ref> cf. Acts 7:22. Moses is favoured as the children author in light of Adamhis educational background.. It tells </ref> even though the context of Noah and the great flood, the tower of Babel, and Abram and Melchizedekstory ends almost three centuries before Moses is even born. No compelling reasons have ever come forth to challenge this authorship.
It then tells of [[God]]'s call and promise of [[salvation]] to [[Abraham]], and Genesis was written after the story of [[IsaacExodus]] and [[Jacob]], whom God named Israel, ending with the settlement of the twelve tribes of Israel (the families ca. 1445 B.C.) of the twelve sons of Jacob) in EgyptIsraelite people, during but before the time death of Joseph's favor with the Egyptian PharaohMoses (ca. 1405 B.C. In traditional Church language, Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob are called the [[Patriarch]]s and are also [[Forefather]]s of Christ).
[[image:creationstars.jpg|left|thumb|An icon of God creating light, in == Major Theme ==This is the form book of "beginnings". It is widely accepted <ref>Not just amongst the stars in Orthodox church but other christian denominations and the skyJudaic faith.</ref>, on that it contains the fourth day early history of the Genesis creation storyman and of Israel, theological themes revealed to man by God Himself.]]
The origins of humanity start with the story of [[creation]] of the world, the fall of [[Adam and Eve]] and the subsequent history of their descendants. It tells of Noah and the great flood, the tower of Babel, and Abram and Melchizedek and the early history of Israel, starting with the three patriarchs of the Hebrews, [[Abraham]], [[Isaac]], and [[Jacob]], and the twelve tribes that were their descendants.
===Creation===The main theme throughout all of this history is that [[God]]'s call and promise of [[salvation]] for Israel.
The creation narrative in Genesis can be split into two sections - the first section starts with an account of the Creation of the universe by God, which occurs in six days, the second section is more human-oriented, and less concerned with explaining how the Earth, its creatures and its features came to exist as they are today. Within the first section, on the first day God created light; on the second, the firmament of heaven; on the third, he separated water and land, and created plant life; on the fourth day he created the sun, moon, and stars; on the fifth day marine life and birds; on the sixth day land animals, and man and woman. On the seventh day, the Sabbath, God rested, and sanctified the day. The second section of the creation narrative explains that the earth was lifeless, how God brought moisture to the soil and how man was formed from the dust (Adam translates from Hebrew to mean 'Red Earth'). ===Adam and Eve=Background ==[[Image:Garden of eden mosaic.jpg|left|thumb|180px|The Expulsion from Paradise (''Palatine Chapel, Palermo, Sicily. Mid-12th c.'').]]God formed Adam out Book of earth ("adamah"), and set him in Genesis covers the Garden of [[Eden]], to watch over it. Adam is allowed to eat of all the fruit within it, except that of the "Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil." God then brings all the animals to Adam (2:19). In verse 2:18, God says he will make a helper for Adam, singular, and then creates the animals. In 2:20, Adam studies all the animals and names them. He does not find his helpmate and notices that all the other animals have helpmates for them (the male and female). When Adam realizes this, God then puts him into a deep sleep, takes a rib from his side, and from it forms a woman (called later "Eve"), to be his companion (his helpmate). Later, starting in verse 3:1, Eve was convinced by [[Satan]], in the form longest time span of a serpent, to eat of the forbidden fruit, the only freedom that God had prohibited Adam and Eve any book in Eden. This turning from God is also considered the [[original sin]] in traditional Christian interpretationBible. As punishment, the ground is cursed, Adam and Eve become mortal (because they no longer have access to the Tree of Life), and they are driven out of the garden. The entrance to the garden is then guarded by [[cherubim]] It starts with a flaming sword.  Adam and Eve initially have two sons, [[Cain and Abel]]. Eventually Cain grows envious of the favor found by his brother before God, and slays him. The first murder is that creation of a brother. Cain is sentenced to wander over the earth as a fugitive. He finally settles in the land of Nod. ===From Adam to Noah===Cain, the son of Adam, builds the first known city in the Bible and calls it after the name of his son, Enoch (Genesis 4:17). Further down the line of genealogy, Lamech takes two wives (Genesis 4:19). Lamech's sons are the first dwellers in tents world and owners of herds (Genesis 4:20, Jabal is called the "father of such concludes as dwell in tents"), and they are the earliest inventors of musical instruments (Genesis 4:21) and workers in brass and iron (Genesis 4:22). These descendants of Cain know nothing about God (Genesis 4:16). Another son of Adam, Seth, has in the meantime been born Hebrews head to Adam and Eve in place of the slain Abel (Genesis 4:25)Egypt. Seth's descendants never lose thought of God (Genesis 4:26). The tenth in regular descent is Noah (Genesis 5:1-29). Adam and Eve also have other sons and daughters (Genesis 5:4). In line with most of the other biblical characters born before the flood whose ages are provided, Adam lived until the age of 930 (Genesis 5:5). Chapter 5 provides a genealogy of descendants of Adam till Noah:Adam, Seth, Enosh, Kenan, Mahalalel, Jared, Enoch, Methuselah, Lamech, Noah  ===Noah and the great flood===In Genesis chapter 6, verse 2, the sons of God (the men who turned back to God after the original fall), took daughters of men (women who were in rebellion against God) to be their wives. Then, in Genesis 6:3, the Lord said; "My spirit shall not put up with humans for these lengths of timetreated as mere history, for they are mortal flesh. In the future, humans shall live no more than 120 years." Then God looked down on the earth and was very displeased. He saw that the beautiful world He made was filled with the violence and hate of mankind; so He decided to cleanse the world with a flood and start again. God selected one man, Noah, and his family, to survive the flood. God commanded him to build but as a large ark, since the work source of destruction was to be accomplished by means of a great flood. Noah obeyed the command, entering the ark together with his family, into which they also brought a mating pair of each kind of animal spiritual wisdom and bird on Earth. Water burst out of the ground and fell from the sky, and the world was flooded, destroying all living beings except those in the ark. When the flood had subsided, Noah's family left the ark, and God enters into a covenant with Noah and all his descendants, the entire human race. Noah soon planted a vineyard (ix. 20) and drank of its wine. While he is intoxicated, Noah is shamelessly treated by his son Ham; upon awakening, Noah cursed the latter in the person of Ham's son Canaan, while his sons Shem and Japheth are blessed. Chapter 10 reviews the peoples descended from Japheth, Ham, and Shem. The dispersion of humanity into separate races and nations is described in the story of the Tower of Babel. Humanity is dispersed book inspired by a "confusion of tongues," which God brought about when men attempted to build a tower that should reach up to heavenhimself. A genealogy is given of Shem's descendants. ===Abram and Sarai===[[image:Abraham.jpg|right|thumb|The Righteous Abraham, a major figure in the Book first three chapters of Genesis.]]Terah, who lives are reflected in Ur of the Chaldees, has last three sons: Abram, Nahor, and Haran, father of Lot. Abram married Sarai. God soon directs Abram to leave his home. Abram obeys, emigrating with his entire household and Lot, his brother's son, to the land of Canaan. Here God appears to him and promises that the land shall become the property of his descendants. However, Abram is forced by a famine to leave Canaan for Egypt. Once there, the Pharaoh of Egypt takes possession of the beautiful Sarai (whom Abram has misleadingly represented as his sister; she was in fact his half-sister). God afflicts Pharaoh with a disease, which the ruler recognizes as a sign from God; thus Pharaoh returns Sarai to Abram. Abram returns to Canaan and separates from Lot in order to put an end to land disputes. God again appears to Abram, promising him the whole country. ===Abram and Melchizedek===Lot is taken prisoner by invading kings from the East. Abram pursues the victors with his armed retainers. Returning with his warband after rescuing Lot and his clan, Abram is met by Melchizedek, the king and high priest of Salem (Jerusalem), who blesses him; in return Abram gives him a tithe of his booty, refusing his share of the same. After this exploit God again appears to Abram and promises him protection, a rich reward, and numerous progeny. These descendants will pass four hundred years in servitude in a strange land, but after God has judged their oppressors they shall leave the land of their affliction, and the fourth generation shall return to Canaan. ===Hagar and Ishmael===[[image:Rublev Trinity.jpg|left|thumb|Rublev's famous icon chapters of three angelsRevelation, a type of the Holy Trinity, appearing to Abraham and Sarah.]]Sarai is still childless in her old age, so Sarai and Abram decide that they will produce an heir for Abram through his Egyptian handmaiden, Hagar. Abram takes her as a concubine and has a child with her named Ishmael. God again appears to Abram Alpha and enters into a personal covenant securing Abram's future: God promises numerous progeny, including one to Sarah within a year, changes Abram's name to "[[Abraham]]" and that Omega of Sarai to writings "[[Sarah]]," and institutes the circumcision of all males as an eternal sign of this covenant. This meeting, in which three angels appear to Abraham and Sarah, is the subject of [[Andrei Rublev]]'s famous icon, called either ''The Hospitality of Abraham'' or simply ''The Trinity''. ===Sodom and Gomorrah===Next, Abraham also hears that God intends to send [[angels]] to execute judgment upon the wicked inhabitants of Sodom and Gomorrah. He intercedes for the sinners, bargaining with God for the lowest number of righteous people required to save the cities. God agrees that he will spare the cities in their entirety if only ten righteous people are to be found therein. Two angels go to Sodom, where they are hospitably received given by Lot. The men inspiration of the city, however, pound on Lot's door, demanding to have sexual relations with the visitors. Having thus shown that they deserved their fate, Sodom and Gomorrah are destroyed by fire and brimstone. Only Lot and his two daughters are saved. Lot's incestuous relationship with his daughters, which resulted in the births of Ammon and Moab, is also described. Abraham journeys to Gerar, the country of Abimelech. Here once again he represents Sarah as his sister, and Abimelech plans to gain possession of her. He desists on being warned by God. ===The birth of Isaac===At last the long-expected son of Abraham and Sarah is born and receives the name of "Isaac" (Itzhak2 Tim 3: "will laugh" in Hebrew16). At Sarah's insistence Ishmael, together with his mother Hagar, is driven out Out of the house. They also have a great future promised all historical information available to them by God. Abraham, during the banquet that he gives in honor of Isaac's birth, enters into a covenant with Abimelech, who confirms his right to the well Beer-sheba.[[image:abrahamisaac.jpg|right|thumb|A Byzantine-style mosaic from the Basilica of San Vitale in Italy depicting the angel's visition to Abraham and his almost-execution of Isaac.Moses]] ===The near-sacrifice of Isaac===Now that Abraham seems to have all his desires fulfilled, having even provided for the future of his son, God subjects him to the greatest trial of his faith by demanding Isaac as a sacrifice. Abraham obeys; but, as he is about selected only what was related to lay the knife upon his son, God restrains him, promising him numberless descendants. On the death religious life of Sarah, Abraham acquires Machpelah for a family tombpeople. Then he sends his servant to Mesopotamia, Nahor's home, to find among his relations a wife for Isaac; and Rebekah, Nahor's granddaughter, is chosen. Other children are born to Abraham by another wife, Keturah, among whose descendants are the Midianites, and he dies in a prosperous old age. ===Esau and Jacob===After being married for twenty years Rebekah It most likely has twins by Isaac: Esau, who becomes a hunter, and Jacob (Ya'akov: "will follow"), who becomes a herdsman. Jacob persuades Esau to sell him his birthright, been edited for which the latter does not care; notwithstanding this bargain, God appears to Isaac and repeats the promises given to Abraham. His wife, whom he represents as his sister, is endangered in the country of the Philistines, but King Abimelech himself averts disaster. In spite of the hostility of Abimelech's people, Isaac is fortunate in all his undertakings in that country, especially in digging wells. God appears to him at Beer-sheba, encourages him, and promises him blessings and numerous descendants; and Abimelech enters into a covenant with him at the same place. Esau marries Canaanite women, to the regret of his parents. Rebekah persuades Jacob to dress himself as Esau, and thus obtain from his blinded by old age father the blessing intended for Esau. To escape his brother's vengeance, Jacob is sent to relations in Haran, being charged by Isaac to find a wife there. On the way God appears to him at night, promising protection and aid for himself and the land for his numerous descendants. Arrived at Haran, Jacob hires himself to Laban, his mother's brother, on condition that, after having served for seven years as a herdsman, he shall have for wife the younger daughter, Rachel, with whom he is in love. At the end of this period Laban gives him the elder daughter, Leah; Jacob therefore serves another seven years for Rachel, and after that six years more for cattle. In the meantime Leah bears him Reuben, Simeon, Levi, and Judah; by Rachel's maid Bilhah he has Dan and Naphtali; by Zilpah, Leah's maid, Gad and Asher; then, by Leah again, Issachar, Zebulun, and Dinah; and finally, by Rachel, Joseph. He also acquires much wealth in flocksgoal over time.
==Outline =Jacob wrestles with God=:''Main Article: [[Genesis (Outline)]]=== By Content ===In fear '''By content''' this book is comprised of Laban, Jacob flees with his family, but soon becomes reconciled with Laban. On approaching his home he is two sections; the first records four major events in fear the '''Early History of Esau, to whom he sends presents. While sleeping, a being (variously regarded as God, an angel, or a man), appears to Jacob Man''' and wrestles with him. The mysterious one pleads to be released before daybreak, but Jacob refuses to release the being until he agrees to bless him. The being announces to Jacob that he shall bear second four great men in the name "'''Early History of Israel," which means "one who wrestled with God," and is freed.''':
The meeting with Esau proves a friendly one# '''History of man''' (Gen. 1–11) and ## Creation (Gen. 1, and 2); ## the brothers separate reconciledFall (Gen. Jacob settles at Shechem3–5); ## the Flood (Gen. His sons Simeon 6–9); and Levi take vengeance on ## the city of Shechem, whose prince has raped their sister DinahDispersion (Gen. On the road from Bethel, Rachel gives birth to a son10, Benjamin, and dies11).
===Joseph the dreamer===# '''Patriarchal history''' (Gen. 12–50)## [[JosephAbraham]], Jacob's favorite son, is hated by his brothers on account of his dreams prognosticating his future dominion, and on the advice of Judah is secretly sold to a caravan of Ishmaelite merchants going to Egypt(Gen. His brothers tell their father that a wild animal has devoured Joseph12:1–25:8); ## [[Isaac]] (Gen. 21:1–35:29); ## [[image:Joseph.jpg|left|thumb|The Patriarch Joseph, who was sold into slavery in Egypt by his brothers.Jacob]]Joseph, carried to Egypt, is there sold as a slave to Potiphar, one of Pharaoh's officials(Gen. He gains his master's confidence25:21–50:14); but when the latter's wife, unable to seduce him, accuses him falsely, he is cast into prison. Here he correctly interprets the dreams of two of his fellow prisoners, the king's butler and baker. When Pharaoh is troubled by dreams that no one is able to interpret, the butler draws attention to ## [[Joseph]] (Gen. The latter is thereupon brought before Pharaoh, whose dreams he interprets to mean that seven years of abundance will be followed by seven years of famine. He advises the king to make provision accordingly, and is empowered to take the necessary steps, being appointed second in the kingdom. Joseph marries Asenath, the daughter of the priest Poti-pherah, by whom he has two sons, Manasseh and Ephraim, who were blessed by Israel, Ephraim with Israel's right hand, Manassah with Israel's left30:22–50:26).
When the famine comes it === Literary structure ===The '''literary structure''' is felt even in Canaan; and Jacob sends his sons to Egypt to buy grain. The brothers appear before Joseph, who recognizes them, but does not reveal himself. After having proved them on this and on a second journey, and they having shown themselves so fearful and penitent that Judah even offers himself as a slave, Joseph reveals his identity, forgives his brothers built around the wrong they did him, and promises to settle in Egypt both them and his father. Jacob brings his whole family, numbering 66 persons, to Egypt, this making, inclusive of Joseph and his sons and himself, 70 persons. Pharaoh receives them amicably and assigns to them recurring phrase "the land history/genealogy of Goshen. When Jacob feels the approach of death he sends for Joseph and his sons, and receives Ephraim and Manasseh among his own sons. Then he calls his sons to his bedside and reveals their future to them. Jacob dies, " and is solemnly interred in the family tomb at Machpelah. Joseph lives to see his great-grandchildren, and on his death-bed he exhorts his brethren, if God should remember them and lead them out of basis for the country, to take his bones with them. The book ends with Joseph's remains being put "in a coffin in Egypt." This, however, does not imply that his family was unfaithful to his wishes, but rather this burial is only temporary. Obviously, they could not have left him unburied for the remainder of their stay in Egypt. They do, in fact, take his bones with them on their journey and bury him at Shechem, a plot of ground already owned by their family ''[[Genesis (Joshua 24:32Outline).|outline]]'''
==Purpose # The Creation of Heaven and Earth (1:1–2:3)# The Generations of the Heavens and Interpretation==the Earth (2:4–4:26)Genesis is not treated as mere history, but as a source # The Generations of spiritual wisdom, a book inspired by God himself. Out Adam (5:1–6:8)# The Generations of all historical information available Noah (6:9–9:29)# The Generations of Shem: Genealogy of Shem to [[Moses]], he selected only what was related to the religious life Terah (11:10–26)# The Generations of Terah (11:27–25:11)# The Generations of Ishmael (25:12–18)# The Generations of Esau (36:1–37:1)# The Generations of people. It most likely has been edited for this goal over time.Jacob (37:2–50:26)
==Liturgical readings==
:# [http://www.ccel.org/fathers2/NPNF2-08/Npnf2-08-16.htm#P2408_786834 The Creation of Fowl and Water Animals.]
:# [http://www.ccel.org/fathers2/NPNF2-08/Npnf2-08-17.htm#P2482_825600 The Creation of Terrestrial Animals.]
* [[w:Genesis|Book of Genesis, Wikipedia article]] (Source of Contents section.)
[[Category:Old Testament]]
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