Abram was the first in scripture to be called 'Hebrew'. Why? What does it mean? Is it only referring to the lineage that Abram descended from? Or, is there an understanding of this discriptive term that also applies to us, as Believers In Christ? This writing explores this concept.
The Coarse Course of YHWH
PART SIX The Unveiling of Genesis 2:7
When I was first learning to understand the mechanical functions of Biblical Hebrew, and learning how to interpret for myself what these Hebrew words were communicating, I found myself being tormented by the mysteries of how and why certain words were translated as they were. I have no idea why I was chosen to pursue this venue, nor why I have never been able to stop investigating these translation ‘anomalies’. But in realizing the many puzzling translation ‘fumbles’ in Gen. 2:7, the focus on my assignment got sharper and clearer; the ‘anomalies’ in Gen. 2:7 would have to be resolved. Over the years, I have come to the conclusion that a great gulf exists between ‘elohim’ and ‘yhvh elohim’. When the mystery of Gen. 2:4 was being revealed to me, and in me, it became obvious that the mystery of Gen. 2:7 would have to be resolved before the remainder of “TaNaK”, or the Old Testament, was going to be understandable; at least for me.
KJV Genesis 2:7 And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul.
To properly illustrate the deceptive confusion this English translation introduces to the mind of man, each word must be individually analyzed and clarified. Each word, even the words added by translators to attempt to make sense of a misunderstood Hebrew phrase, must be investigated so that this foundational sentence makes perfect Spiritual sense. And it does make perfect spiritual sense, once you remove the distortion of the English translation.
The first word to be unveiled in this sentence is the word ‘formed’. The word translated ‘formed’ here is from the primary root ‘tzar-rar’, and spelled in Hebrew as ‘tzadey’ – ‘reysh’ – ‘reysh’. And for you Bereans, Strong’s Concordance designates this primary root verb as #H6887. The basic theme of this word ‘tzar-rar’ is that of being bound up; by whatever means or whatever cause or whatever reason, ‘tzar-rar’ produces bondage, restriction, resistance, enemy influence and/or tribulation. Most of the words translated from this ‘tzar-rar’ theme communicate the ideas of restriction, oppression and resistance. However, this resistance, or restriction, is not always a negative. Many times the word can be understood as a limiting device to throttle the chaotic nature of ‘adam’ as a ‘living soul’. This should become more obvious as we go forward.
This word ‘tzar-rar’ is also the Hebrew basis for the English word we translate as ‘potter’, and the things to which the ‘potter’ gives a ‘formed’ expression. ‘Tzar-rar’ is also the basis for the word we translate many times as ‘rock’; as in God is our Rock (Tzur). At this point it is necessary to declare that the ideas conveyed by the word ‘formed’, a verb activity, and the ideas conveyed by the word ‘form’, a passive noun, have almost nothing in common in the Hebrew language. The passive noun expressions translated as ‘form’ do come from root verbs, but not from the verb ‘tzar-rar’. Only in one instance, Is. 45:7, is the English word ‘form’ derived from this ‘tzar-rar’ root. And in that instance the Hebrew word has a ‘vav’, or the sixth letter, inserted into the middle of it, indicating the presence of the influence and/or contamination by the mind of ‘adam’.
In Gen. 2:7, the unusual spelling of the Hebrew word ‘tzur’, which is translated ‘formed’ in this verse, is very unique; so much so that it appears in this unique spelling only this one time in all of the Old Testament. That in itself is enough to raise questions in my mind. The indication here is that ‘yhvh elohim’ caused ‘adam’ (man) to be formed as dust, or at the level of manifesting a ‘dust’ identity, or ‘dust’ expression. The Hebrew word translated into English as ‘dust’ is ‘gah-phar’ [Strong’s #H6083]. I spelled this word phonetically this way to illustrate that the Hebrew ‘gah-phar’ begins with the letter ‘gay-yin’, the 16 th letter of the Hebrew ‘aleph-bet’ (alphabet), and the letter ‘gay-yin’ is phonetically a guttural, but traditionally is no longer pronounced as a guttural by non-eastern Orientals. As English speaking westerners, we don’t handle gutturals very well, and conveniently refuse to master the pronunciations. However, this has caused enormous confusion and misunderstanding when trying to grasp the important spiritual nuances of old Hebrew. Throughout the remainder of this chapter I will not include the small ‘g’ prefix in these words to indicate the guttural characterization of these words.
Because few searchers and researchers understand the importance of the differing influences that certain Hebrew letters introduce into a word, students tend to confuse the relationship with ‘ay-yin’, the 16 th letter, and ‘a-leph’, which is the first letter of the alphabet, and tend to interchange them as synonymous. They absolutely are not synonymous, and when not recognizing the vast difference of understanding between ‘ay-yin’ and ‘a-leph’, a myriad of confusions and mistranslation occurs. Nowhere is this more obvious and important to me than in Gen. 2:7.
Also, before we go further, another important ‘anomaly’ must be recognized. In the following segment “…formed man of the dust of the ground”, ‘of’ is italicized in most translations to indicate that there is no grammatical justification in the Hebrew language for having inserted the word ‘of ‘ into this narrative, other than to make sense to the translators. By adding ‘of ‘ to this concept of ‘dust’, the translators completely changed the flow and meaning of this sentence. Remove the ‘of ‘ from this segment, and the understanding of the language changes dramatically. My own study convinces me, also, that the word ‘the’ before the word ‘dust’ is also an unnecessary and confusing insertion by the translators, and is not supported by the Hebrew language of this segment. Remove the ‘of’ which does not exist in the Hebrew in this segment, and the ‘the’ which also is not supported by the Hebrew and should not be in this segment, and you have a completely different and more accurate translation of what this verse is revealing. So what, then, is the literal translation of the Hebrew, without any additional English influence?
“And did cause to be formed, YHVH Elohim, himself the ‘adam’ (mankind), dust from the ground…” And in my own simpler translation, “YHVH Elohim did cause ‘adam’ to be formed ‘dust’ from the ground…”
Who Is Adam?
“And YHVH Elohim formed man (adam) dust from the ground…” Why is this so important, you rightly ask? The most prominent idea that the word ‘adam’ communicates is that of having the quality and potential to “…be like…” Adam (mankind) has the potential, and the propensity, to ‘image’ and ‘be like’ those spiritual influences that can and do influence ‘adam’. The simple truth of the Hebrew word ‘adam’ has been lost on seeking minds for millennia, and not necessarily by accident or coincidence. It was no fluke of circumstance that mankind was distracted from the original strategy of Spirit Truth. Adam was deceived into believing that adam is only flesh and bone, and getting his ‘life’ from blood. Mankind believed that ‘adam’ was primarily a reference to blood. It is not! The perfect mind of the Spirit of Truth has never changed. Not ever. Adam was ordained and predetermined as unique above all other lifeforms. Adam could ‘hear’ the voice of spirit influence, and then be motivated or manipulated by that spirit voice, to submit to or respond to that spirit voice of influence. Adam could hear the voice of the spirit of greed or fear or hate or pride, and be moved upon to respond to those negative spirit voices, and therefore man-ifest the negative spirit that could manipulate ‘adam’. Adam is also equipped with the unique capacity to hear the voice of Spirit Truth, and then manifest that Spirit Truth in the benevolent relationship adam was to impart to all in his realm of influence. Adam, alone, could have the ability, and the responsibility, to impart Godly Order to the benefit of all. Adam was assigned the responsible opportunity to hear the voice of Spirit Truth, or God, and consequently bring his own mind and understanding into submission to Spirit Truth. Only when ‘adam’ was in submission to the superior voice of Spirit Truth could ‘adam’ (mankind) then man -ifest Spirit Truth to all. Adam was chosen to man-ifest and ‘image’ Spirit Truth. All other spirit voices that manipulated ‘adam’ resulted in chaos, disorder and destruction. Adam’s role was to serve creation, from the position of submission to Spirit Truth, for the benevolence of all of creation. In this, and in this alone, was adam to Image God, and be the Likeness of God. Then, and only then, could ‘adam’ become Adam. And in this role, God would indeed become Man. And any performance by Adam, less than submission to Spirit Truth, would result in the manifestation of dust! For ‘dust’ is a quality of existence, and the results thereof.
The Hebrew word we most often translate as ‘ground’ is ‘ah- damah’ (Strong’s #H127), and is simply the feminine activity of the word ‘adam’. We discussed previously the important influence of letters added as a suffix, or a prefix, to a root word. The word ‘adamah’ is formed by simply adding ‘hey’, the fifth Hebrew letter, as a suffix to the word ‘adam’. This should become more obvious and understandable as we go forward. The ground, or ‘ah-damah’, is that most fertile and nourishing portion of ‘earth’ that encourages and enables ‘life’ to flourish, and be fruitful. The ground, or the ‘ah-damah’, is that expression of ‘earth’ that is also ‘like’ God, in that it provides the most potential for healthy and fruit-bearing life. Dust, on the other hand, does not encourage or support ‘life’, and actually inhibits and thwarts the expression of ‘life’. As we discuss these words, please remember that the opening chapters of Genesis are a parable, illustrating the pageant of Spirit Life that we are all striving to understand. All of these words are selected to impart to us an understanding of Spirit Life, for God is Spirit, on the authority of Yashua. Amen.