In the Beginning…The Book of Genesis


We begin Genesis with the parashah, B’reishit (1:1-6:8), a smorgasbord of Top Billboard Torah Hits!, this Thursday, 4-5pm.

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Selected Verses of the Week

1.  So God created the human beings in [the divine] image, creating [them] in the image of God, creating them male and female.  (Gen. 1:27)

2.  So it is that a man will leave his father and mother and cling to his wife, and they become one flesh.  (Gen. 2:24)

3. Then Adonai said to Cain, “Where is your brother Abel?”  And he replied, “How should I know; am I my brother’s keeper?” (Gen. 4:9)

Suggested Readings

‘Together But Separate: Adam and Eve’s original relationship in which they were together as one flesh yet still distinct provides us with an ideal model’ by Dvora Weisberg, Associate Professor of Rabbinics at Hebrew Union College:

After creating the first human, God realizes, “It is not good for man to be alone” (Gen. 2:18). The man names all the animals, but cannot find a companion among them; they are alien to him. God forms a woman from the man’s rib. Upon seeing her, the man exclaims, “This one at last is bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh” (2:23). The man (ish) calls the woman ishah, reflecting the sameness he senses in her. They are together naked and unashamed, close enough to feel utterly safe in each other’s company.

This idyllic relationship is soon shattered. Together in their disobedience, they pull apart while confronting God, each blaming others for his or her acts. Their relationship is now defined by their separateness, by roles and by the power he will exercise over her. The man gives the woman a name signifying her otherness; she is “the mother of all the living” (3:20). Eve’s name says much about her relationship with every human being to come, but nothing about her relationship with Adam.

Read the post in full on My Jewish Learning


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