earth, ground, soil, bottom) • Fragment Targums: not mentioned in the verse • Targum Jerusalem: arā (אָעְרַא). Translation: land (or earth, ground, soil, ... to the north in Assyrian she became Kishar (𒆠𒊹), the 'Eternal Earth.
Author: Scriptural Research Institute
Publisher: Scriptural Research Institute
In the mid-3rd century BC, King Ptolemy II Philadelphus of Egypt ordered a translation of the ancient Israelite scriptures for the Library of Alexandria, which resulted in the creation of the Septuagint. The original version, published circa 250 BC, only included the Torah, or in Greek terms, the Pentateuch. The Torah is composed of the five books traditionally credited to Moses, circa 1500 BC: Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy. The first of these five books was known as Cosmic Genesis in Greek, however, known as Bereshít in Hebrew, which translates as approximately ‘In the beginning’ the first few words of the book. The Book of Cosmic Genesis begins by recounting a fusion of ancient Akkadian and Middle Egyptian creation mythology, before telling the stories of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, the ancestors of the Israelites. Their stories also include smatterings of Old and Middle Egyptian religious iconography, sure as Jacob seeing the ladder up to the sky, which in Egyptian mythology was associated with Osiris since the Old Kingdom era. The book culminates with the Israelites, the descendants of Jacob, all moving to Egypt during a famine in Canaan. Based on the chronology in the Septuagint, his famine would have been during collapse of the Egyptian Middle Kingdom, which led to a group of Canaanites seizing control of Egypt, as described a the end of Cosmic Genesis.