English: translationNotes

Updated ? hours ago # views See on DCS

Genesis translationNotes

Genesis front

Introduction to Genesis

Part 1: General Introduction

Outline of Genesis

1. From the Creation to the Tower of Babel

- The account of the creation of the heavens and the earth (1:1–4:26)

- The account of Adam (5:1–6:8)

- The account of Noah (6:9–11:9)

- The account of Shem (11:10–11:26)

- The account of Terah (11:27–11:32)

1. The accounts of the Patriarchs

- The account of Abraham (12:1-25:11)

- The account of Ishmael (25:12–25:18)

- The account of Isaac, focusing on Jacob (25:19–35:29)

- The account of Esau (36:1–37:1)

- The account of Jacob, focusing on Joseph (37:2–50:26)

What is Genesis about?

Genesis begins with the early years of creation. It tells about God creating heaven, earth, and the first humans. It also tells about the first time humans sinned. This caused humans to be separated from God and to eventually die. Genesis 1-11 briefly tells about other important events that occurred over many hundreds of years. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/sin and translationWords:bible/other/death)

Genesis is also about the beginning of God's people. Genesis 12-50 tells about how God remained faithful to Abraham and his descendants. Abraham's descendants became known as the Hebrews and later as the Israelites. These people would worship Yahweh and be his people.

Genesis ends with Abraham's descendants living in Egypt with the hope of returning one day to the Promised Land. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/promisedland)

How should the title of this book be translated?

"Genesis" means "beginning," so translators should express this idea in their title. Titles such as "The Beginning of Things" may be suitable. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Who wrote Genesis?

The writers of both the Old and New Testaments presented Moses as being very involved with writing the book of Genesis. Since ancient times, both Jews and Christians have thought that Moses wrote Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy.

Part 2: Important Religious and Cultural Concepts

What are the covenants mentioned in Genesis?

A covenant is a formal, binding agreement between two parties that one or both parties must fulfill.

God made three covenants in Genesis. In the covenant with Adam, God promised to bless Adam and cause him to prosper. Adam was not allowed to eat fruit from the tree of knowledge of good and evil. God promised that Adam would die if he disobeyed what he commanded.

In the covenant with Noah, God promised to never again destroy the world with a flood.

In the covenant with Abraham, God promised to make Abraham's descendants into a great nation. He also promised to protect them and to give them a land of their own.

What was God's purpose for the book of Genesis?

The book of Genesis says that God created a very good world. However, the world became cursed because human beings began to sin. But Genesis shows that God continues to have complete control over the world.

Genesis also describes the start of God's plan to bless the whole world again. This is shown when God makes a covenant with Abraham. With this covenant, God chose Abraham and his descendants to be his people. God promised to bless the world through Abraham's descendants.

What was the custom for inheritance as described by Genesis?

There are several passages in Genesis that show the customs of a father who is about to die passing on a blessing to his son. Abraham blessed his son, Isaac, and made him the ancestor of the people of Israel. However, Ishmael, Abraham's other son, did not receive that same divine blessing. Likewise, Isaac's older son Esau did not receive the blessing. Isaac's younger son, Jacob, received it instead. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/inherit and translationWords:bible/kt/bless)

Also, it was the custom for a man to divide among his sons his material wealth and land. All his sons received equal portions except the oldest son. The firstborn son received twice as much. His portion was called a double portion. Esau gave up his right to receive the double portion.

How does Genesis present sin and evil?

Genesis presents sin as doing things that are against God’s word and God's ways. It presents evil as the opposite of good.

Sin and evil have affected all people. This started when Adam disobeyed God in the Garden of Eden.

Part 3: Important Translation Issues

What is one way in which Genesis marks the beginning of important sections?

Genesis uses one Hebrew phrase that the ULT translates as "this is the record of," "these were the events concerning," or "these were the descendants of." The information in these sections may have come from sources much older than Moses. These passages are 2:4; 5:1; 6:9; 10:1; 11:10, 27; 25:12, 19; 36:1, 9; 37:2.

If the translator wants to translate in only two ways, we recommend for most passages a phrase such as, "this is the record about" or "this is information about." Some passages will be better translated, however, as "These were the descendants of."

Why are the beginnings of some narrative sections in Genesis difficult to translate?

Often in Genesis, the author first summarizes what is about to happen. Then in the following verses, the author tells the details of what happened. Probable examples of this style occur in Gen. 1:1, 6:22, 18:1, 21:1 and 22:1.

However, in many languages, it is preferred to write summaries at the end of a narrative. In this case, translators may choose a different approach. For example, in Gen. 1:1 ("In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth"), translators may decide to translate like this: "This is about how God made the heavens and the earth in the beginning."

What is the difference between "people," "peoples," and "people groups"?

The word "people" refers to all the individuals who belong to a group, such as "the people of Israel." The word "peoples" (used in the ULT) refers to multiple groups of people. Each people group might speak their own language, have their own customs, and worships their own gods. Some different peoples in the ancient Near East were those of Israel, Egypt, Edom, Moab, and Ammon.

The expression "people groups" (used in the UST) means the same thing as "peoples" in the ULT. The translator should use the most equivalent term that is common in the project language.

What is the relationship between individuals and peoples that have similar names?

Many individuals in Genesis eventually had large numbers of descendants who were called after their ancestor's name. For example, Cush was the name of an individual. But, "Cush" also became the name of nation that his descendants formed. They were called "Cushites." If possible, when translating these names, the translator should make the individual's name and the nation's name similar. Examples of this are "Cush" and "Cushite" or "Moab" and "Moabite." Otherwise, the translator may say, "the descendants of Cush" or "the descendants of Moab."

What do the phrases "to this day" or "of today" mean?

These phrases were used by the narrator to refer to the time when he was writing. The translator should be aware that "to this day" and "of today" refer to a time already passed. The translator might decide to say, "to this day, at the time when this is being written," or, "to this day, at the time of writing." This Hebrew phrase occurs in Gen. 19:37, 19:38, 22:14, 26:33, 32:32, 35:20, 47:26, 48:18.

Genesis 1

Genesis 01 General Notes

Structure and formatting

This chapter presents the first account of God creating the world. There is a pattern to this account: "God said ... God saw that it was good ... This was evening and morning, the first day." Translators should preserve this pattern in their versions.

Special concepts in this chapter

The universe

This account of creation is told within the framework of ancient Hebrew ideas about the universe: the earth was resting with water around it and below it. Over the earth was something like a vast dome, called "an expanse between the waters" (1:6), on top of which was more water. Translators should try to keep these original images in their work, even though readers in their project language might have a completely different idea of what the universe is like.

Evening and morning

Genesis 1 presents the ancient Hebrew idea of a day: it begins with sunset, lasts through the night and continues through the daylight hours until the next sunset. This pattern should be preserved in translation, even if readers in the project language define "day" differently.

Other possible translation difficulties in this chapter

"In the beginning"

Some languages and cultures speak of the world as if it has always existed, as if it had no beginning. But "very long ago" is different from "in the beginning," and you need to be sure that your translation communicates correctly.

"God said, 'Let there be'"

This expression occurs often in this chapter. It can be difficult to translate, because God is not shown as talking to a particular person. If God is talking to a thing, it is something not yet in existence. Translators should find the most natural way in the project language to signal the idea that God spoke things into existence; he created the world and the things in it by simply commanding that they should exist.

Genesis 1:1

"This is about how God made the heavens and the earth in the beginning." This statement summarizes the rest of the chapter. Some languages translate it as "A very long time ago God created the heavens and the earth." Translate it in a way that shows this actually happened and is not just a folk story.

This refers to the start of the world and everything in it.

"the sky, the ground, and everything in them"

This refers here to the sky.

Genesis 1:2

God had not yet put the world in order.

"the water" or "the deep water" or "the vast water"

"the surface of the water" or "the water"

Genesis 1:3

This is a command. By commanding that light should exist, God made it exist. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-imperative)

Genesis 1:4

"God considered the light and was pleased with it." "Good" here means "pleasing" or "suitable."

"separated the light and the darkness" or "made it light at one time and dark at another." This refers to God creating the daytime and the night time.

Genesis 1:5

God did these things on the first day that the universe existed.

This refers to the whole day. The writer speaks of the whole day as if it were these two parts. In the Jewish culture, a day begins when the sun sets. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-merism)

Genesis 1:6

These are commands. By commanding that the expanse should exist and that it divide the waters, God made it exist and divide the waters. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-imperative)

large empty space. The Jewish people thought of this space as being shaped like the inside of dome or the inside of a bowl that is turned upside down.

"in the water"

Genesis 1:7

"In this way God made the expanse and divided the waters." When God spoke, it happened. This sentence explains what God did when he spoke.

"It happened like that" or "That is what happened." What God commanded happened just as he said it should. This phrase appears throughout the chapter and has the same meaning wherever it appears.

Genesis 1:8

This refers to the whole day. The writer speaks of the whole day as if it were these two parts. In the Jewish culture, a day begins when the sun sets. See how you translated this in [Genesis 1:5](../01/05.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-merism)

This refers to the second day that the universe existed. See how you translated "the first day" in [Genesis 1:5](../01/05.md) and decide if you should translate this the same way.

Genesis 1:9

This can be translated with an active verb. This is a command. By commanding that the waters gather together, God made them gather together. Alternate translation: "Let the waters ... gather" or "Let the waters ... come together" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive and translationAcademy:translate/figs-imperative)

The water had covered the land. Now the water would move aside and some of the land would be uncovered. This is a command. By commanding that dry land should appear, God made it appear. Alternate translation: "let dry land become visible" or "let the dry land become clear" or "let the land be uncovered" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-imperative)

This refers to land that is not covered with water. It does not refer to land that is too dry for farming.

"It happened like that" or "That is what happened." What God commanded happened just as he said it should. This phrase appears throughout the chapter and has the same meaning wherever it appears. See how you translated it in [Genesis 1:7](../01/07.md).

Genesis 1:10

"the part that was dry 'earth,' and"

Here "it" refers to the land and the sea. See how you translated this in [Genesis 1:4](../01/04.md).

Genesis 1:11

This is a command. By commanding that vegetation should sprout on the earth, God made it sprout. Alternate translation: "Let vegetation sprout up on the earth" or "Let vegetation grow on the earth" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-imperative)

"vegetation, each plant that bears seed and each tree that bears fruit" or "vegetation. Let them be plants that produce seeds and fruit trees that produce fruit." Here "vegetation" is used here as a general term that includes all plants and trees.

These are kinds of vegetation that have soft stems, rather than woody stems.

"trees that bear fruit with seeds in them"

The seeds would produce plants and trees that would be like the ones they came from. In this way, the plants and trees would "reproduce themselves" .

"It happened like that" or "That is what happened." What God commanded happened just as he said it should. This phrase appears throughout the chapter and has the same meaning wherever it appears. See how you translated this in [Genesis 1:7](../01/07.md).

Genesis 1:12

Here "it" refers to the vegetation, plants, and trees. See how you translated this in [Genesis 1:10](../01/10.md).

Genesis 1:13

This refers to the whole day. The writer speaks of the whole day as if it were these two parts. In the Jewish culture, a day begins when the sun sets. See how you translated this in [Genesis 1:5](../01/05.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-merism)

This refers to the third day that the universe existed. See how you translated "the first day" in [Genesis 1:5](../01/05.md) and decide if you should translate this the same way.

Genesis 1:14

This is a command. By commanding that lights should exist, God made them exist. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-imperative)

"things that shine in the sky" or "things that give light in the sky." This refers to the sun, moon, and stars.

"in the expanse of the sky" or "in the large space of the sky"

"to separate the day from the night." This means "to help us tell the difference between day and night." The sun means it is daytime, and the moon and stars mean it is nighttime.

This is a command. By commanding that they should serve as signs, God made them serve as signs. Alternate translation: "Let them serve as signs" or "let them show" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-imperative)

Here this means something that reveals or points to something.

The sun, moon, and stars show the passing of time. This enables us to know when it is time for events that happen each week, month, or year.

times that are set aside for festivals and other things that people do

Genesis 1:15

This is a command. By commanding that they should light the earth, God made them light the earth. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-imperative)

"to shine light on the earth" or "to brighten the earth." The earth does not self-shine but it is lit and so reflects light.

"It happened like that" or "That is what happened." What God commanded happened just as he said it should. This phrase appears throughout the chapter and has the same meaning. See how you translated this in [Genesis 1:7](../01/07.md).

Genesis 1:16

"In this way God made the two great lights." This sentence explains what God did when he spoke.

"the two large lights" or "the two bright lights." The two great lights are the sun and the moon.

The lights that controlled the day are spoken of as if they were a human ruler that controlled what people do. Alternate translation: "to direct the daytime as a ruler directs a group of people" or "to mark the times of the day" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-personification and translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

This refers only to the daylight hours.

"the smaller light" or "the dimmer light"

Genesis 1:17

"in the heavens" or "in the open space of the sky"

Genesis 1:18

"to separate the light from the darkness" or "to make it light at one time and dark at another." See how you translated this in [Genesis 1:4](../01/04.md).

Here "it" refers to the sun, moon, and stars. See how you translated this in [Genesis 1:4](../01/04.md).

Genesis 1:19

This refers to the whole day. The writer speaks of the whole day as if it were these two parts. In the Jewish culture, a day begins when the sun sets. See how you translated this in [Genesis 1:5](../01/05.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-merism)

This refers to the fourth day that the universe existed. See how you translated "the first day" in [Genesis 1:5](../01/05.md) and decide if you should translate this the same way.

Genesis 1:20

This is a command. By commanding that living creatures should fill the waters, God made them exist. Some languages may have one word that refers to all kinds of fish and sea animals. Alternate translation: "Let the waters be full of many living things" or "Let many animals that swim live in the oceans" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-imperative)

This is a command. By commanding that birds should fly, God made them fly. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-imperative)

"animals that fly" or "flying things"

"the open space of the sky" or "the sky"

Genesis 1:21

"In this way God created"

"large animals that live in the sea"

Living things of the same "kind" are like the ones they came from. See how you translated "kind" in [Genesis 1:11,12](./11.md).

"every flying thing that has wings." If the word for birds is used, it may be more natural in some languages to simply say "every bird," since all birds have wings.

Here "it" refers to the birds and the fish. See how you translated this in [Genesis 1:4](../01/04.md).

Genesis 1:22

"blessed the animals that he had made"

This is God's blessing. He told the sea animals to produce more sea animals like themselves, so that there would be many of them in the seas. The word "multiply" explains how they are to be "fruitful." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-doublet and translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

increase greatly in number

This is a command. By commanding that birds should multiply, God made birds multiply. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-imperative)

"animals that fly" or "flying things." See how you translated this in [Genesis 1:20](../01/20.md).

Genesis 1:23

This refers to the whole day. The writer speaks of the whole day as if it were these two parts. In the Jewish culture, a day begins when the sun sets. See how you translated this in [Genesis 1:5](../01/05.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-merism)

This refers to the fifth day that the universe existed. See how you translated "the first day" in [Genesis 1:5](../01/05.md) and decide if you should translate this the same way.

Genesis 1:24

"Let the earth produce living things" or "Let many living animals live on the earth." This is a command. By commanding that the earth should produce living creatures, God made the earth produce living creatures. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-imperative)

"so that each kind of animal will produce more of its own kind"

This shows that God created all kinds of animals. If your language has another way of grouping all the animals, you can use that, or you can use these groups.

animals that people look after

"small animals"

"wild animals" or "dangerous animals"

"It happened like that" or "That is what happened." What God commanded happened just as he said it should. This phrase appears throughout the chapter and has the same meaning. See how you translated this in [Genesis 1:7](../01/07.md).

Genesis 1:25

"In this way God made the beasts"

Here "it" refers to the living creatures on the earth. See how you translated this in [Genesis 1:4](../01/04.md).

Genesis 1:26

The word "us" here refers to God. God was saying what he intended to do. The pronoun "us" is plural. Possible reasons for the plural use are 1) the plural form suggests that God is discussing something with the angels that make up his heavenly court or 2) the plural form foreshadows the later New Testament implications that God exists in the form of the Holy Trinity. Some translate it as "Let me make" or "I will make." If you do this, consider adding a footnote to say that the word is plural. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-pronouns)

human beings

These two phrases mean the same thing and emphasize that God made mankind to be like him. This verse does not tell in what ways God made people to be like himself. God does not have a body, so it does not mean that people would look like God. Alternate translation: "to truly be like us" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-doublet and translationAcademy:translate/figs-pronouns)

"rule over" or "have authority over"

Genesis 1:27

These two sentences mean the same thing and emphasize that God created people in his own image. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-parallelism)

The way that God created man was different from the way he created everything else. Do not specify that he created man by simply speaking, as in the preceding verses.

Genesis 1:28

The word "them" refers to the man and woman God had created.

God told the man and the woman to produce more people like themselves so that there would be many of them. The word "multiply" explains how they are to be "fruitful." See how you translated this in [Genesis 1:22](../01/22.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-doublet and translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

Fill the earth with people.

Genesis 1:30

God continues speaking.

"all the birds that fly in the sky"

"that breathes." This phrase emphasizes that these animals had a different kind of life than the plants. Plants do not breathe, and were to be used as food for the animals. Here "life" means physical life.

"It happened like that" or "That is what happened." What God commanded happened just as he said it should. This phrase appears throughout the chapter and has the same meaning. See how you translated it in [Genesis 1:7](../01/07.md).

Genesis 1:31

"This is true and important: it"

Now when God looked at everything he had made, it was "very good. "See how you translated "it was good" in [Genesis 1:10](../01/10.md).

This refers to the whole day. The writer speaks of the whole day as if it were these two parts. In the Jewish culture, a day begins when the sun sets. See how you translated this in [Genesis 1:5](../01/05.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-merism)

This refers to the sixth day that the universe existed. See how you translated "the first day" in [Genesis 1:5](../01/05.md) and decide if you should translate this the same way.

Genesis 2

Genesis 02 General Notes

Structure and formatting

Gen. 2:1-3 ends the first creation account, begun in the previous chapter. The second creation account, beginning in 2:4, is very different, using a more natural, story-telling style instead of following a set formula using repeated phrases. Translators should try to imitate this difference in their versions.

Special concepts in this chapter

The second creation account in Gen. 2:4-25

Gen. 2:4-25 presents an account of creation from a different viewpoint than the one given in Gen. 1:1-2:3. This second account should be regarded as filling out the first account, not as conflicting with it.

Yahweh, the name of God

"Yahweh," the personal name of God in the Old Testament, appears for the first time in this chapter. Translators must decide how to represent it in their versions. For 2,000 years, it has been traditional for many Christians to represent it with the term "the Lord." Indeed, it is demanded by Roman Catholics for their Bible versions to continue doing this. Of course, the disadvantage of using "the Lord" is that this is a title for God, not a personal name. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/yahweh)

Translators who are not producing versions for Roman Catholics can consider transliterating the name "Yahweh," approximating the name as best as their project languages allow.

Or translators can consider using expressions for the supreme god that might exist in their project languages, such as, "The Great One," "The Ruler of All," "The One who Never Sleeps," etc. Of course, these are descriptive titles, not personal names, so they suffer from the same disadvantages that "the Lord" has.

Translators can also consider pairing a transliteration of "Yahweh" with a meaningful title for the supreme god in the project language. Whatever solution is found should be followed consistently when the name "Yahweh" occurs in the Scriptures.

The Garden of Eden

This was not a vegetable garden or cultivated field. Instead, it was probably a large area of land with fruit trees and other plants bearing leaves, etc., that were good to eat. A river flowed out from the Garden of Eden, giving the impression that the Garden was a holy place; in the ancient Near East, temples had gardens and waterways. In Rev. 22:1-2, the throne of God in the New Jerusalem is pictured with a river flowing out from it. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/holy)

Genesis 2:1

"the sky" or "the skies"

"and all the many living things that are in them" or "and all the crowds of living things in them"

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "God had finished creating them" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Genesis 2:2

God did not work at all on the seventh day.

This is an idiom. Alternate translation: "had finished" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

"on that day he did not work"

Genesis 2:3

Possible meanings are 1) God caused the seventh day to produce good result or 2) God said that the seventh day was good.

"set it apart" or "called it his own"

"on it he did not work"

Genesis 2:4

The rest of Genesis 2 tells about how God created people on the sixth day.

"This is the account of the heavens and the earth" or "This is the story about the heavens and the earth." Possible meanings are 1) it is a summary of the events described in Genesis 1:1-2:3 or 2) it introduces the events described in Genesis 2. If possible, translate this so that people can understood it either way.

"Yahweh God created them." In chapter 1 the writer always speaks of God as "God," but in chapter 2 he always speaks of God as "Yahweh God."

"when Yahweh God created." The word "day" refers to the whole time span of the creation, not to just one particular day.

This is the name of God that he revealed to his people in the Old Testament. See the translationWord page about Yahweh concerning how to translate this.

Genesis 2:5

no shrubs growing in the wild that animals might eat

no leafy plants like vegetables or greens that both animals and humans can eat

to do everything he needed to do so that the plants would grow well

Genesis 2:6

Possible meanings are 1) something like dew or morning fog o 2) springs from underground streams.

the entire earth

Genesis 2:7

"molded man" or "shaped man" or "created man"

"a human being ... the human" or "a person ... the person" not specifically a male

"his nose"

"breath that makes things live." Here "life" refers to physical life.

Genesis 2:8

This could have been an orchard of fruit trees or an area with all kinds of trees.

in the east

Genesis 2:9

"the tree that gives people life"

Here this means "eternal life" or life that does not end.

"the tree that gives people the ability to understand both good and evil" or "the tree that makes people who eat its fruit able to know good things and bad things"

This is a figure of speech that refers to both extremes and everything in between. Alternate translation: "everything, including both good and evil" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-merism)

"in the middle of the garden." The two trees may not have been in the exact center of the garden.

Genesis 2:10

The garden was in Eden. The river continued to flow outside of Eden. "A river flowed through Eden to water the garden"

Genesis 2:11

This is the only time this river is referred to in the Bible. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

"the whole land called Havilah." It was somewhere in the Arabian Desert. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

This phrase gives information about Havilah. Some languages would translate it as a separate sentence. Alternate translation: "There is gold in Havilah" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-distinguish)

Genesis 2:12

The word "there" is placed first in the sentence for emphasis. Alternate translation: "This is also where people can find bdellium and onyx stones"

This resin comes from a tree and smells nice. A resin is sticky stuff that comes out of some trees and can burn. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-unknown)

"onyx stones." Onyx is a certain kind of beautiful stone. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-unknown)

Genesis 2:13

This is the only mention of this river in the Bible. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

The river did not cover the whole land, but wound through various parts of the land.

"the entire land called Cush"

Genesis 2:14

"which flows in the land east of the city of Ashur." The Tigris River flows from north to south. The phrase "which flows east of Ashur" gives information about where the Tigris River is. Some languages would translate it as a separate sentence. Alternate translation: "It flows east of Ashur" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-distinguish)

Genesis 2:15

"the garden that was in Eden"

"to cultivate it." This means to do everything necessary so that the plants will grow well.

to guard against anything bad happening in it

Genesis 2:16

"The fruit of every tree in the garden"

This pronoun is singular. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-you)

"may eat without restriction"

Genesis 2:17

These words complete the command that begins with the words "From every tree in the garden you may freely eat" in verse 15. In some languages, it may be more natural to say what is not permitted and to then say what is permitted, as in the UST.

"the tree that gives people the ability to understand both good and evil" or "the tree that makes people who eat its fruit able to know good things and bad things." See how you translated this in [Genesis 2:9](../02/09.md).

"I will not permit you to eat" or "you must not eat"

Genesis 2:18

"I will make a helper who is just right for him"

Genesis 2:19

The phrases "of the field" and "of the sky" tell where the animals and birds are usually found. Alternate translation: "all kinds of animals and birds"

Genesis 2:20

"all the animals that people look after"

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "there was no companion that was right for him" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Genesis 2:21

"caused the man to sleep intensely." A deep sleep is a time of sleeping in which a person is not easily disturbed or wakened.

This refers to the soft parts of the body like skin and muscle.

Genesis 2:22

"From the rib ... he formed a woman." The rib was the material God made the woman from.

Genesis 2:23

"Finally, this one's bones are like my bones, and her flesh is like my flesh." After looking among all the animals for a partner and not finding one, he finally saw someone who was like him and could be his partner. The man was probably expressing his feeling of relief and joy.

The translator may want to write a footnote saying "The Hebrew word for 'woman' sounds like the Hebrew word for 'man.'

Genesis 2:24

What follows is written by the author. The man did not say these things.

"That is why a man"

"a man will stop living in his father and mother's home." This is about men in general. It does not refer to any particular man at any particular time.

This idiom speaks of sexual activity as though the bodies that are together become one body. Alternate translation: "their two bodies will become one body" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

Genesis 2:25

The word "they" refers to the man and the woman that God had created.

"not wearing clothing"

"they were not ashamed about being naked"

Genesis 3

Genesis 03 General Notes

Structure and formatting

This chapter continues the second creation account that began in Gen. 2:4. But a new section of this account begins in 3:1. The ULT reads, "Now the serpent was more shrewd than any other beast of the field which Yahweh God had made," because this is how the Scriptures introduce the serpent into the account. However, many languages prefer different ways to introduce new characters or things into stories, for example, "One of the wild animals made by God was the serpent" or "This is about the serpent, one of the wild animals that God had made."

Scholars typically refer to the events of this chapter as "the fall" or "the fall of man" because sin is introduced into creation. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/sin)

Special concepts in this chapter

Curses

In this chapter, God curses the man, the woman, and the serpent for their sins. In general, cursing is calling down God's punishment on someone or something. In this chapter, however, it is God himself who is doing the cursing. Of course, he does not call down punishment on the man, the woman, and the serpent from someone else. Instead, he is promising that he himself will punish them. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/curse)

Serpent

Most scholars believe that the serpent is Satan, even though his name is not used in this chapter. There are other places in Scripture where the serpent is used as an image for Satan. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/satan and translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit))

Genesis 3:1

The writer is beginning a new part of the story.

"more cunning" or "smarter at getting what he wanted by telling lies"

The snake is pretending to be surprised that God has made this rule. This rhetorical question can be translated as a statement. Alternate translation: "I am surprised that God said, 'You ... garden.'" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion)

The word "you" is plural and refers to the man and the woman. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-you)

Genesis 3:2

"We are allowed to eat" or "We have permission to eat"

Genesis 3:3

These words are the end of Eve's description of God's command to them that begins with the words "We may eat" in verse 2. Eve told the serpent what God had permitted them to do first and then what God had told them not to do. Some languages would say what they were told not to do first and then say what they were allowed to do, as in the UST.

The word "you" is plural and refers to the man and the woman. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-you)

"You must not eat it" or "Do not eat it"

"and you must not touch it" or "and do not touch it"

Genesis 3:4

These words refer to the man and the woman and so are dual or plural. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-you)

Genesis 3:5

These words refer to the man and the woman and so are dual or plural. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-you)

"your eyes will open." This idiom means "you will become aware of things" or "you will understand new things." This meaning can be stated clearly. Alternate translation: "It will be as though your eyes were opened" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

Here "good and evil" is a figure of speech that refers to both extremes and everything in between. See how you translated "knowledge of good and evil" in [Genesis 2:9](../02/09.md). Alternate translation: "knowing everything, including both good and evil" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-merism)

Genesis 3:6

"the tree was delightful to look at" or "it was nice to look at" or "it was very beautiful"

"she wanted the tree's fruit because it could make a person wise" or "she wanted its fruit because it could make her understand what was right and wrong just as God does"

Genesis 3:7

"Then their eyes opened" or "They became aware" or "They understood." See how you translated "your eyes will be opened" in [Genesis 3:5](../03/05.md).

put together, probably using vines as thread

If people do not know what fig leaves are like, this can be translated as "large leaves from a fig tree" or simply "large leaves."

They did this because they were ashamed. This implicit information can be made explicit if needed as in the UST. Alternate translation: "clothed themselves with them because they were ashamed" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 3:8

"at the time of day when a cool breeze blows"

"from Yahweh God's sight" or "so that Yahweh God would not see them" or "from Yahweh God"

Genesis 3:9

"Why are you trying to hide from me?" God knew where the man was. When the man answered, he did not say where he was but why he was hiding.

In verses 9 and 11, God was speaking to the man. Languages that have a singular form of "you" would use that here. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-you)

Genesis 3:10

"I heard the sound you were making"

Genesis 3:11

God knew the answer to this question. He asked it in order to force Adam to confess that he had disobeyed God. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion)

Again, God knew this had happened. Translate this question in a form that shows God was accusing Adam of disobedience. The sentence can be translated as a statement. Alternate translation: "You must have eaten ... from." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion)

Genesis 3:13

God already knew what the woman had done. When he asked this question, he was giving her the opportunity to tell him about it, and he was expressing his disappointment with what she had done. Many languages use rhetorical questions for scolding or rebuking. If possible, use a form that expresses this disappointment. It can also be translated as a statement. Alternate translation: "You have done a terrible thing." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion)

Genesis 3:14

"you alone are cursed." The word "curse" is first in Hebrew in order to emphasize the contrast between God's blessing on the animals and this curse on the serpent. This is a "curse formula," or the way that curses were expressed. By saying this curse, God made it happen.

"all domestic animals and all wild animals"

"You will move along the ground on your stomach." The words "it is upon your stomach" comes first to emphasize the contrast between the way other animals would move along using their legs and the way the serpent would slither along on its stomach. This is also part of the curse formula.

"you will eat dust." The words "it is dust" comes first to emphasize the contrast between the plants above the ground that other animals would eat and the dirty food on the ground that the serpent would eat. This is part of the curse formula.

Genesis 3:15

This means that the serpent and the woman would become enemies.

The word "seed" refers to what a man puts into a woman to cause a baby to grow inside the woman. Like the word "offspring," it can refer to more than one person. Try to find a word that is singular but can refer to more than one person.

The words "he" and "his" refer to the woman's descendant. If "seed" was translated as plural, this can be translated as "they will bruise ... their heel"; in this case, consider inserting footnotes to say that the "they" and "their" are used to translate a singular pronoun. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-pronouns)

"crush" or "strike" or "attack"

Genesis 3:16

"I will make your pain increase much" or "I will make your pain to be very severe"

"in giving birth to children" or "when you give birth to children"

"You will have a strong desire for your husband." Possible meanings are 1) "You will want very much to be with your husband" or 2) "You will want to control your husband"

"he will be your master" or "he will control you"

Genesis 3:17

The name Adam is the same as the Hebrew word for "man." Some translations say "Adam" and some say "the man." You may use either form as it refers to the same person.

This is an idiom. Alternate translation: "you have obeyed what your wife said" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

You can say what it was that they ate. Alternate translation: "have eaten the fruit of the tree" or "have eaten some of the fruit of the tree" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

"You must not eat from it" or "Do not eat its fruit"

The word "curse" comes first in the sentence to emphasize that the ground, which had been "good" ([Genesis 1:10](../01/10.md)), was now under God's curse. This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "I am cursing the ground" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

"by doing hard work"

The word "it" refers to the ground and is a metonym for the parts of the plants, which grow in the ground, that people eat. Alternate translation: "you will eat what grows from it" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Genesis 3:18

Possible meanings are 1) "the plants that you take care of in your fields" or 2) "the wild plants that grow in the open fields."

Genesis 3:19

"By doing hard work that makes your face sweat"

Here the word "bread" is a synecdoche for food in general. Alternate translation: "you will eat food" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

"until you die and your body is put in the ground." In some cultures, they put the bodies of people who have died in a hole in the ground. Man's hard work does not end until the time of his death and burial.

"I made you from soil, so your body will become soil again." Translate both occurrences of "dust" with the same word in order to show that man begins and ends in the same condition.

Genesis 3:20

Some translations say "Adam."

"gave his wife the name Eve" or "named his wife Eve"

Translators may write a footnote saying "The name Eve sounds like the Hebrew word that means 'living.'"

The word "living" refers to people. Alternate translation: "all people" or "all living people" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-nominaladj)

Genesis 3:21

"clothing made out of animal skins"

Genesis 3:22

Possible meanings are 1) God was referring to one human, the man, or 2) God was referring to humans in general, so this would mean the man and his wife. Even if God was speaking about one person, what he said applied to both of them.

"like us." The pronoun "us" is plural. See how you translated "Let us make" in [Genesis 1:26](../01/26.md).

Here "good and evil" is a figure of speech that refers to both extremes and everything in between. See how you translated "knowledge of good and evil" in [Genesis 2:9](../02/09.md). Alternate translation: "knowing everything, including both good and evil" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-merism)

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "I will not allow him" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

"the tree that gives people life." See how you translated this in [Genesis 2:9](../02/09.md).

Genesis 3:23

"dirt because he had been taken from dirt." This does not refer to the particular place on the land that the God took man from.

This means to what is needed so that plants grow well. See how you translated this in [Genesis 2:5](../02/05.md).

Genesis 3:24

"God forced the man to leave the garden." This refers to the event in [Genesis 3:23](../03/23.md), where it says "Yahweh God sent him out of the garden of Eden." God did not send the man out a second time.

"in order to stop people from going to the tree of life"

Possible meanings are 1) a sword that had flames coming from it or 2) a fire that was shaped like a sword. Languages that do not have swords could use another weapon such as a spear or arrow.

Genesis 4

Genesis 04 General Notes

Structure and formatting

Most of the text in this chapter is prose, but 4:23-24 is poetry. If the translator should put these two verses into poetic form, or at least into elegant speech, different from the rest of the chapter.

Special concepts in this chapter

Vengeance

The theme of vengeance is important in this chapter. Ancient Hebrew society allowed for people to seek revenge if a relative was murdered. After Cain murdered his brother Abel, he thought that he would be helpless against this danger because he had been driven away from God's protection. (See: translationWords:bible/other/avenge)

The theme of vengeance continues with the words of Lamech, who had killed someone for injuring him:

"I have killed a man for wounding me, a young man for bruising me. If Cain is avenged seven times as much, truly Lamech will be avenged seventy-seven times as much" (Gen. 4:23b-24).

Genesis 4:1

This is a polite way of saying that the man had sexual relations with Eve. You may need to use another euphemism in your language. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-euphemism)

"the human being" or "Adam"

The word for "man" typically describes an adult male, rather than a baby or child. If that would cause confusion, it could be translated as "manchild" or "boy" or "baby boy" or "son."

Translators may want to include a footnote that says "The name Cain sounds like the Hebrew word that means 'produce.' Eve named him Cain because she produced him." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 4:2

We do not know how much time passed between the births of Cain and Abel. They may have been twins, or Abel may have been born after Eve became pregnant again. If possible, use an expression that does not tell how much time passed.

This means he did everything he needed to do so that the plants would grow well. See how "cultivate" is translated in [Genesis 2:5](../02/05.md).

Genesis 4:3

This phrase is used to mark the beginning of a new part of the story. If your language has a way for doing this, you could consider using that method here.

Possible meanings are 1) "after some time had passed" or 2) "at the right time"

This refers to the food that came from plants he had tended. Alternate translation: "crops" or "harvest" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 4:4

This refers to the fatty parts of the lambs that he had killed, it was the best part of the animal. Alternate translation: "some of their fat parts" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

"looked favorably upon" or "was pleased with"

Genesis 4:5

"did not look favorably upon" or "was not pleased with"

Some languages have an idiom for anger such as "He burned" or "His anger burned."

This means that the expression on his face showed that he was angry or jealous. Some languages have an idiom that describes what a person's face looks like when he is angry. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

Genesis 4:6

God used these rhetorical questions to tell Cain that he was wrong to be angry and scowl. They may also have been intended to give Cain an opportunity to confess that he was wrong. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion)

Genesis 4:7

God used this rhetorical question to remind Cain of something Cain should have already known. Alternate translation: "You know that if you do what is right, I will accept you" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion)

God speaks of sin as if it were a person. Alternate translation: "But if you do not do what is right, you will desire to sin even more, and then you will do sinful things. You must refuse to obey it" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-personification)

Here sin is spoken of as a dangerous wild animal that is waiting for the chance to attack Cain. Alternate translation: "you will become so angry that you will not be able to stop sin" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Languages that do not have a noun that means "sin" could translate this as "your desire to sin" or "the bad things you want to do."

Yahweh speaks of Cain's desire to sin as if it were a person over whom Cain should rule. Alternate translation: "you must control it so you do not sin" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-personification)

Genesis 4:8

Some early translations tell explicitly what Cain said to his brother. You may want to do the same if it is present in your national version. Alternate translation: "Cain said to Abel his brother, 'Let us go into the fields.'" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-textvariants and translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Abel was Cain's younger brother. Some languages may need to use the word for "younger brother." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Standing up to fight against a person is an idiom for attacking him. Alternate translation: "attacked" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

Genesis 4:9

God knew that Cain had killed Abel, but he asked Cain this question so that Cain would have to answer. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion)

Cain used this rhetorical question so that he would not have to tell the truth. This can be translated as a statement. Alternate translation: "I am not my brother's keeper!" or "You know that taking care of my brother is not my job!" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion)

Genesis 4:10

God uses a rhetorical question to rebuke Cain. This can be translated as a statement. Alternate translation: "What you have done is terrible!" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion)

Abel's blood is a metonym for his death, as if it were a person calling out for God to punish Cain. Alternate translation: "Your brother's blood is like a person calling out to me to punish the person who killed him" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Genesis 4:11

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "I am cursing you so that you will not be able to grow food from the ground" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

God speaks of the earth as if it were a person who could drink Abel's blood. Alternate translation: "which is soaked with your brother's blood" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-personification)

Here Cain is represented by his "hand," to emphasize that he personally had killed his brother. Alternate translation: "that spilled when you killed him" or "from you" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

Genesis 4:12

This means to do everything necessary to do so that the plants would grow well. See how "cultivate" is translated in [Genesis 2:5](../02/05.md).

The ground is personified as if it were a person who loses strength. Alternate translation: "the ground will not produce much food for you" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-personification)

You can join these words together. Alternate translation: "A homeless wanderer" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-hendiadys)

Genesis 4:14

The term "your face" represents God's presence. Alternate translation: "I will not be able to speak to you" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

See how you translated this in [Genesis 4:12](../04/12.md)

Genesis 4:15

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "I will take vengeance on him seven times" or "I will punish that person seven times as severely as I am punishing you" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

"would not kill Cain"

Genesis 4:16

Even though Yahweh is everywhere, this idiom speaks of Cain as though he went far away. Alternate translation: "went away from where Yahweh spoke to him" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

Translators may add a footnote saying "The word Nod means 'wandering.'"

Genesis 4:17

This is a polite way of saying that Cain had sexual relations with his wife. You may need to use another euphemism in your language. See how you translated this in [Genesis 4:1](../04/01.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-euphemism)

"Cain built a city"

Genesis 4:18

It is implied that Enoch grew up and married a woman. Alternate translation: "Enoch grew up and married and became the father of a son whom he named Irad" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

This is a man's name. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 4:19

women's names (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 4:20

See how you translated this woman's name in [Genesis 4:19](../04/19.md).

Possible meanings are 1) "He was the first person to live in a tent" or 2) "He and his descendants lived in tents."

people who both live in tents and also take care of animals

Genesis 4:21

Possible meanings are 1) "He was the first person to play the harp and pipe" or 2) "He and his descendants played the harp and pipe."

Genesis 4:22

See how you translated this woman's name in [Genesis 4:19](../04/19.md).

the name of a man (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

"who made tools out of bronze and iron"

a very strong metal used to make tools and weapons.

Genesis 4:23

See how you translated these women's names in [Genesis 4:19](../04/19.md).

Lamech said the same thing twice for emphasis. His voice is a synecdoche for his whole person. Alternate translation: "listen carefully to me" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-parallelism and translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

Lamech killed only one person. These two phrases mean the same thing and are repeated to emphasize the certainty of his action. Alternate translation: "a young man because he hurt me" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-parallelism)

Genesis 4:24

Lamech knows that God will avenge Cain seven times. Alternate translation: "Since God will punish anyone who kills Cain seven times, Lamech" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "whoever kills me, God will punish seventy-seven times" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

77 (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

Genesis 4:25

This is a polite way of saying that Adam had sexual relations with his wife. You may need to use another euphemism in your language. See how you translated this in [Genesis 4:1](../04/01.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-euphemism)

This is the reason that she named him Seth. This can be made explicit. Alternate translation: "explained, 'God has given me another child" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Translators may add a footnote that says "This name sounds like the Hebrew word that means 'has given.'" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 4:26

This can be made explicit. Alternate translation: "Seth's wife bore him a son" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

This is the first time people called God by the name Yahweh. This can be made explicit. Alternate translation: "to worship God by using the name Yahweh" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 5

Genesis 05 General Notes

Structure and formatting

This chapter provides the first of many lists of descendants in the Bible. This is not a simple list, because the author makes comments about each person. Translators should format this text in the way that is clearest in the project language. Many may choose to introduce each new person in a separate paragraph, as the ULT and UST do.

Genesis 5:1

This is the beginning of the list of Adam's descendants.

This phrase means that God made mankind to be like him. This verse does not tell in what ways God made people to be like himself. God does not have a body, so it does not mean that people would look like God. See how "after our likeness" is translated in [Genesis 1:26](../01/26.md). Alternate translation: "to truly be like us" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-pronouns)

Genesis 5:2

This can be made active. Alternate translation: "when he created them" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Genesis 5:3

Translators may write the words "one hundred thirty." (The ULT and the UST use numerals if the number has three or more words; they use words if a number has only one or two words.) (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

"he had a son"

These two phrases mean the same thing. They are used as a reminder that God made man in his own image. See how you translated similar phrases in [Genesis 1:26](../01/26.md).

See how you translated this name in [Genesis 4:25](../04/25.md).

Genesis 5:4

Translators may write the numerals "800." (The ULT and the UST use numerals if the number has three or more words; they use words if a number has only one or two words.) (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

"He had more sons and daughters"

Genesis 5:5

This phrase will be repeated throughout the chapter. Use the ordinary word for "died."

"Adam lived nine hundred and thirty years." People used to live a very long time. Use your ordinary word for "years." Alternate translation: "Adam lived a total of 930 years" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

Genesis 5:6

"one hundred and five years" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

Here "father" means his actual father, not his grandfather. Alternate translation: "he had his son Enosh"

This is the name of a person. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 5:7

"eight hundred and seven years" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

"and had more sons and daughters"

Genesis 5:8

"Seth lived nine hundred and twelve years." Seth lived a total of 912 years. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

This phrase is repeated throughout the chapter. Use the ordinary word for "died."

Genesis 5:9

The records in Genesis 5:6-27 have the same format. Translate them according to the notes in [Genesis 5:6-8](./06.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names and translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

"90 years" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

Genesis 5:10

"eight hundred and fifteen years" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

Genesis 5:11

"nine hundred and give years" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

Genesis 5:12

The records in Genesis 5:6-27 have the same format. Translate them according to the notes in [Genesis 5:6-8](./06.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names and translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

"70 years" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

Genesis 5:13

"eight hundred and forty years" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

Genesis 5:14

"nine hundred and ten years" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

Genesis 5:15

The records in Genesis 5:6-27 have the same format. Translate them according to the notes in [Genesis 5:6-8](./06.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names and translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

Genesis 5:18

The records in Genesis 5:6-27 have the same format. Translate them according to the notes in [Genesis 5:6-8](./06.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names and translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

Genesis 5:21

"he had his son Methuselah"

This is the name of a man. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 5:22

To walk with someone is a metaphor for being in a close relationship with him. Alternate translation: "Enoch had a close relationship with God" or "Enoch lived in union with God" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

"He had more sons and daughters"

Genesis 5:23

"Enoch lived three hundred and sixty-five years." Enoch lived a total of 365 years. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

Genesis 5:24

The word "he" refers to Enoch. He was no longer on earth.

This means that God took Enoch to be with himself (God).

Genesis 5:25

The records in Genesis 5:6-27 have the same format. Translate them according to the notes in [Genesis 5:6-8](./06.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names and translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

This Lamech is different from the Lamech in [Genesis 4:18](../04/18.md).

Genesis 5:28

"one hundred and eighty-two years" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

"had a son"

Genesis 5:29

Translators may want to add a footnote that says: "This name sounds like the Hebrew word that means 'rest.'" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Lamech says the same thing twice to emphasize how hard the work was. Alternate translation: "from working so hard with our hands" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-doublet and translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

Genesis 5:30

"five hundred and ninety-five years" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

Genesis 5:31

"Lamech lived seven hundred seventy-seven years." Lamech lived a total of 777 years" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

Genesis 5:32

"he had his sons." This does not tell us whether the sons were born on the same day or in different years.

These sons may not be listed in the order of their birth. There is disagreement about which one was the oldest. Avoid translating this in a way that implies that the list is in the order of their ages.

Genesis 6

Genesis 06 General Notes

Structure and formatting

Beginning in 6:22, the author gives statements summarizing events he tells about again in the text that follows. In the next chapter, the author sometimes gives summary statements that introduce events for the first time. If these statements, and the surrounding events, are not carefully translated, readers can believe that the same events happened twice or three times instead of only one time. Translators should be careful not to give this impression.

Genesis 6:1

This phrase is used here to mark the beginning of a new part of the story. If your language has a way for doing this, you could consider using it here.

This can be active. Alternate translation: "the women bore daughters" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Genesis 6:2

Translators could add a footnote saying: "It is not clear whether this refers to heavenly beings or human beings. In either case, they were beings that God created." Some believe these words refer to angels who rebelled against God, that is, evil spirits or demons. Others think this may refer to powerful political rulers, and others think this may refer to the descendants of Seth.

Genesis 6:3

Here Yahweh is talking about himself and his spirit, which is the Spirit of God.

This means that they have physical bodies that will one day die.

"They will live one hundred and twenty years." Possible meanings are 1) the normal lifespan of people would decrease to 120 years. Alternate translation: "They will not live more than 120 years" or 2) in 120 years everyone would die. Alternate translation: "They will live only 120 years" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

Genesis 6:4

very tall, large people

"The giants were born because"

See how you translated this in [Genesis 6:2](../06/02.md).

"These giants were the mighty men who lived long ago" or "These children grew to become the powerful fighters who lived long ago"

men who are courageous and victorious in battle

"famous men"

Genesis 6:5

"everything their hearts wanted to think about"

The writer speaks of the heart as if it were the part of the body that thinks. Your language may use a word other than "heart" to talk about the part of people that thinks. Alternate translation: "their inner, secret thoughts" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Genesis 6:6

The writer speaks of the heart as if it were the part of the body that feels sadness. Your language may use a word other than "heart" to talk about the emotions. Alternate translation: "he was very, very sad about it" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Genesis 6:7

The writer speaks of God killing people as if God were wiping dirt off a flat surface. Alternate translation: "I will destroy mankind ... so that there will not be any people on the earth" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Some languages would need to translate this as two sentences. Alternate translation: "I created mankind. I will wipe them away" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-distinguish)

"completely destroy." Here "wipe away" is used in a negative sense, for God is talking about destroying the people because of their sin.

Genesis 6:8

The phrase "found favor" is an idiom which means to be approved of by someone. Also, the eyes represent seeing, and seeing represents thoughts or judgment. Alternate translation: "Yahweh looked favorably on Noah" or "Yahweh was pleased with Noah" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom and translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Genesis 6:9

This begins the story of Noah, which continues into chapter 9.

"This is the account of Noah"

See how you translated this in [Genesis 5:21](../05/21.md).

Genesis 6:10

"Noah had three sons" or "Noah's wife had three sons"

Translators may add the following footnote: "The sons are not listed in the order in which they were born."

Genesis 6:11

Possible meanings are 1) the people who lived on the earth or 2) "The earth itself." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

The people doing what is evil is spoken of as if they were food that has become rotten. Alternate translation: "was rotten" or "was completely evil" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Possible meanings are 1) "in God's sight" or 2) "in the presence of Yahweh" as in [Genesis 4:16](../04/16.md).

The writer speaks of violence as if it were something that could be put into a container and of the earth as a container. Alternate translation: "and there were very many violent people on the earth" or "because it was full of people who did evil things to each other" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Genesis 6:12

The word "behold" here alerts us to pay attention to the surprising information that follows.

Possible meanings for what "all flesh" represents are 1) all human beings or 2) all physical beings, including humans and animal. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

How a person behaves is spoken of as if it were a way or road. Alternate translation: "had stopped living the way God wanted" or "had behaved in an evil way" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Genesis 6:13

See how you translated these words in [Genesis 6:12](../06/12.md).

"people everywhere on earth are violent"

"I will destroy both them and the earth" or "I will destroy them when I destroy the earth"

Genesis 6:14

This refers to a very large box that would be able to float on water even in a very bad storm. "a large boat" or "a ship" or "a barge"

People do not know exactly what kind of tree this was. "wood used for building boats" or "good wood"

The reason for doing this can be made explicit. Alternate translation: "spread pitch on it" or "paint tar on it" or "cover it with pitch to make it waterproof" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

This is a thick, sticky or oily liquid that people put on the outside of a boat to stop water from going through gaps in the wood into the boat.

Genesis 6:15

A cubit was a unit of measure, a little less than half a meter long. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-bdistance)

"138 meters." You may use the Hebrew measuring units from the ULT or the metric units from the UST or your own culture's units if you know how they compare to the metric units. You may also write a footnote that says: "Three hundred cubits is about 138 meters." (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-bdistance)

"twenty-three meters" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-bdistance)

"fourteen meters" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-bdistance)

Genesis 6:16

This was probably a peaked or slanted roof. Its purpose was to protect everything in the ark from the rain.

A cubit was a little less than half a meter long. See how you translated this in [Genesis 6:15](../06/15.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-bdistance)

"a lower deck, a middle deck, and an upper deck" or "three decks inside"

"floor" or "level"

Genesis 6:17

God said this in order to emphasize that he would do what he was about to say. "Pay attention" or "Listen to what I am saying"

In some languages it may b e better to say "to send" instead of "to bring. It is also possible to avoid the direction and say "to cause." Alternate translation: "I am about to send a flood of waters" or "I am about to cause a flood" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-go)

Here "flesh" represents all physical beings, including humans and animals. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

Here "breath" represents life. Alternate translation: "that lives" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Genesis 6:18

"make a covenant between you and me"

with Noah

"You will enter the ark." Some translations say "You will go into the ark."

Genesis 6:19

"You must bring into the ark two of every kind of living creature"

an animal God created

See how you translated these words in [Genesis 6:12](../06/12.md).

Genesis 6:20

"of each different kind"

This refers to small animals that move on the ground .

This refers to two of every kind of bird and animal.

This refers to Noah and so is singular. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-you)

"so you can keep them alive"

Genesis 6:21

These refer to Noah and are singular. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-you)

"food that people and animals eat"

Genesis 6:22

These two sentences mean the same thing. The second sentence explains the first and emphasizes that Noah obeyed God. These parallel sentences can be combined into one. Alternate translation: "So Noah did everything that God commanded him to do" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-parallelism)

Genesis 7

Genesis 07 General Notes

Structure and formatting

In this chapter, the author continues his pattern of statements that summarize events already described, and of repeating events that have already happened. Again, careful translation is necessary so that readers do not think that the same events happened more than one time in the story. Special attention in this regard should be given to 7:5,10,13, and 17.

Special concepts in this chapter

Clean animals and birds

Noah sacrificed to Yahweh some of the "clean" animals and birds that he had with him (8:20). These were animals and birds that the Hebrew people would later consider to be fit to eat and to sacrifice to God. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/clean)

Water underneath and over the earth

The flood is presented as occurring because of rain pouring out of the sky and because of seawater rising from under the earth. This is because the ancient Hebrews pictured the earth as resting on top of the sea. They also pictured the sky as containing water above the earth that poured down through windows in the sky when God allowed it to rain. Translators should not try to change this picture in order to suit what readers believe about the world. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/heaven)

Genesis 7:1

The events in this chapter take place after Noah built the ark, gathered the food, and put it in the ark.

"Enter ... into the ark." Many translations read "Go ... into the ark." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-go)

The word "you" refers to Noah and is singular. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-you)

"your family"

This means that God saw Noah as righteous.

This refers to all the people who were living at that time. Alternate translation: "among all the people who are now living"

Genesis 7:2

"take." Many translations read "you will take." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-go)

This was an animal that God allowed his people to eat and to sacrifice.

These were animals that God did not allow people to eat or to sacrifice.

Genesis 7:3

"so that they will have offspring that will live" or "so that, after the flood, animals will continue to live"

Genesis 7:4

This was a full forty days. It was not a total of eighty days. Alternate translation: "forty days and nights"

This refers to physical life.

Genesis 7:6

Verses 6-12 repeat for a second time and give more detail about how Noah went into the ark with his family and the animals in [Genesis 7:1-5](./01.md). This is not a new event.

"happened" or "came on the earth"

Genesis 7:7

"because of the flood that would come" or "to escape the flood water"

Genesis 7:8

Verses 6-12 repeat for a second time and give more detail about how Noah went into the ark with his family and the animals in [Genesis 7:1-5](./01.md). This is not a new event.

These were animals that God allowed people to eat and to give to him as sacrifices.

These were animals that God did not allow people to eat or to give to him as sacrifices.

Genesis 7:9

The animals entered the boat in pairs of one male and one female.

Genesis 7:10

This phrase is used here to mark an important event in the story: the start of the flood. If your language has a way for doing this, you could consider using it here.

"after seven days" or "seven days later"

The implicit information, "it started to rain" can be made explicit. Alternate translation: "it started to rain and the waters of the flood came upon the earth" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 7:11

Verses 6-12 repeat for a second time and give more detail about how Noah went into the ark with his family and the animals in [Genesis 7:1-5](./01.md). This is not a new event.

"When Noah was 600 years old" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-ordinal)

Since Moses wrote this book, it is possible he is referring to the second month of the Hebrew calendar. But this is uncertain. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-hebrewmonths and translationAcademy:translate/translate-ordinal)

This refers to the specific day when the rain began. This phrase emphasizes how all of these major events happened quickly when the time arrived.

"water from under the earth rushed up to the earth's surface"

This refers to the sea that was thought to be under the earth.

This refers to rain. It describes the sky as a ceiling that keeps the waters above it from falling down to the earth. When the windows, or doors, in the sky were opened, the water came down through them. Alternate translation: "the sky opened" or "the doors in the sky opened"

Genesis 7:12

If your language has a word for a great amount of rain, it would be appropriate here.

Genesis 7:13

Verses 13-18 repeat for a third time and give more detail about how Noah went into the ark with his family and the animals in [Genesis 7:1-5](./01.md). This is not a new event.

"On that exact day." This refers to the day that the rain started. Verses 13-16 tell what Noah did immediately before the rain began.

Genesis 7:14

These four groups are listed to show that every kind of animal was included. If your language has another way of grouping all the animals, you can use that, or you can use these groups. See how you translated this in [Genesis 1:24](../01/24.md).

This refers to animals that crawl on the ground, like rodents, insects, lizards, and snakes.

"so that each kind of animal will produce more of its own kind." See how you translated this in [Genesis 1:24](../01/24.md).

Genesis 7:15

Verses 13-18 repeat for a third time and give more detail about how Noah went into the ark with his family and the animals in [Genesis 7:1-5](./01.md). This is not a new event.

Here "flesh" represents animals. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Here "breath" represents life. Alternate translation: "that lived" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

The word "came" can be translated as "went." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-go)

Here "flesh" represents animals. Alternate translation: "of every kind of animal" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

Genesis 7:16

The full meaning can be stated explicitly. Alternate translation: "after they entered the ark" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 7:17

Verses 13-18 repeat for a third time and give more detail about how Noah went into the ark with his family and the animals in [Genesis 7:1-5](./01.md). This is not a new event.

"the water became very deep." This happened during the forty days while the water kept coming.

"it caused the ark to float"

"causes the ark to rise up high over the ground" or "he ark floated on top of the deep water"

Genesis 7:19

"The water totally overwhelmed the earth"

Genesis 7:20

"six meters." See how you translated this in [Genesis 6:15](../06/15.md).

Genesis 7:21

"moved about" or "roamed"

This refers to all the animals that move around on the ground in large groups.

Genesis 7:22

Here "noses" represent the whole animal or human. Alternate translation: "everyone that breathed" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

The words "breath" and "life" represent the power that causes people and animals to be alive. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Genesis 7:23

If necessary, this can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "So every living thing ... perished" or "So the flood completely destroyed every living thing" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "God destroyed them all" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

"so they were no longer on the earth"

"the people and animals that were with him"

"remained" or "lived" or "remained alive"

Genesis 8

Genesis 08 General Notes

Structure and formatting

Some translations set each line of poetry farther to the right than the rest of the text to make it easier to read. The ULT does this with the poetry in 8:22, which is part of what Yahweh was telling Noah.

Special concepts in this chapter

Flood waters

The waters receded after this great flood. Because there was so much water, and it came from God, it is described in a unique way.

The mountains of Ararat

It is unclear where Ararat was located. Many people believe it is located in the modern country of Turkey.

Genesis 8:1

"remembered Noah" or "decided to help Noah"

This refers to a very large box that would be able to float on water even in a very bad storm. See how you translated this in [Genesis 6:14](../06/14.md). Alternate translation: "a large boat" or "a ship" or "a barge"

Genesis 8:2

"The water stopped coming out of the ground and the rain stopped falling." This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "God closed the fountains of the deep and the windows of heaven" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

"water from under the earth." See how this is translated in [Genesis 7:11](../07/11.md).

This refers to the rain stopping. It describes the sky as a ceiling that keeps the waters above it from falling down to the earth. When the windows, or doors, in the sky were closed, the water stopped coming through them. See how "the windows of heaven" is translated in [Genesis 7:11](../07/11.md). Alternate translation: "the sky closed" or "the doors in the sky closed"

Genesis 8:4

"landed" or "stopped on solid ground"

Because Moses wrote this book, it is possible he is referring to the seventh month of the Hebrew calendar, but this is uncertain. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-hebrewmonths and translationAcademy:translate/translate-ordinal)

Genesis 8:5

Because Moses wrote this book, it is possible he is referring to the tenth month of the Hebrew calendar, but this is uncertain. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-hebrewmonths and translationAcademy:translate/translate-ordinal)

"On the first day of the tenth month"

This can be made more explicit: "appeared above the surface of the water." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 8:6

This phrase is used here to mark the beginning of a new part of the story. If your language has a way for doing this, you could consider using it here. Alternate translation: "It happened that"

The phrase "which he had made" tells about the window. Some languages may need to make this phrase a separate sentence: "Noah had made a window in the boat. It came about after forty days that he opened the window" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-distinguish)

Genesis 8:7

a black bird that eats mainly the flesh of dead animals

This means that the raven kept leaving the boat and returning.

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "until the wind dried up the waters" or "until the waters dried up" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Genesis 8:8

If you use masculine pronouns for the word "dove," you may need to insert Noah's name here to avoid confusion: "Noah sent out a dove."

Genesis 8:9

"to land" or "to perch." It means to land on something in order to rest from flying.

The word "dove" is feminine in the author's language. You could translate these phrases with the pronouns "its ... it ... it" or "his ... he ... him," depending on how your language refers to a dove.

If you use masculine pronouns for the word "dove," you may need to insert Noah's name here to avoid confusion: "Noah sent out a dove," "Noah stretched forth his hand," etc.

Genesis 8:10

"He again waited for seven days"

Genesis 8:11

"Pay attention" or "This is important"

"a leaf that she had just plucked from an olive tree"

"broken off"

Genesis 8:12

If people would not understand, you could state the reason explicitly: "She did not return again to him because she found a place to land." (See:translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 8:13

This phrase is used here to mark the beginning of a new part of the story. If your language has a way for doing this, you could consider using it here.

"when Noah was 601 years old" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-ordinal)

Since Moses wrote this book it is possible he is referring to the first month of the Hebrew calendar, but this is uncertain. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-hebrewmonths and translationAcademy:translate/translate-ordinal)

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "the waters covering the earth dried up" or "the wind dried up the waters covering the earth" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

This refers to a cover that kept the rain water from going into the ark.

The word "behold" tells us to pay attention to the important information that comes next.

Genesis 8:14

"On the twenty seventh day of the second month." This may refer to the second month of the Hebrew calendar, but this is uncertain. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-hebrewmonths and translationAcademy:translate/translate-ordinal)

"the ground was completely dry"

Genesis 8:16

"Leave." Some translations read "Come out." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-go)

Genesis 8:17

"Take." Some translations read "Bring out." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-go)

"every kind of living creature." See how "all flesh" is translated in [Genesis 6:12](../06/12.md).

This is an idiom. See how this is translated in [Genesis 1:28](../01/28.md). God wanted the humans and animals to reproduce, so there would be many of them. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-doublet and translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

Genesis 8:18

Some translations read "Noah came out." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-go)

Genesis 8:19

"in groups of their own kinds"

Genesis 8:20

"built an altar dedicated to Yahweh" or "built an altar for worshiping Yahweh." He may have built it with stones.

Here "clean" means that God allowed these animals to be used in sacrifice. Some animals were not used for sacrifices and were called "unclean."

Noah killed the animals and then completely burned them up as an offering to God. Alternate translation: "burned the animals as offerings to Yahweh"

Genesis 8:21

This refers to the good smell of the roasted meat.

Here the word "heart" refers to God's thoughts and emotions.

"do very serious harm to the earth"

This can be made more explicit: "because mankind is sinful." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

"from their earliest years they tend to do evil things" or "when they are young, they want to do evil things"

Here the word "hearts" refers to people's thoughts, emotions, desires, and will. Alternate translation: "their tendency" or "their habit"

This refers to an older child. Alternate translation: "from their youth"

Genesis 8:22

"While the earth lasts" or "As long as the earth exists"

"the season for planting"

These expressions both refer to two major weather conditions in the year. Translators may use local expressions. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-merism)

the hot, dry time of the year

the cool, wet or snowy time of the year

"will not cease to exist" or "will not cease to occur." This can be expressed in a positive manner. Alternate translation: "will continue" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-doublenegatives)

Genesis 9

Genesis 09 General Notes

Structure and formatting

Some translations prefer to set apart extended quotations, prayers or songs. The ULT and many other English translations set the lines of 9:6-7, which is the poetic part of the quotation, farther to the right on the page than the rest of the text. They also set apart 9:25-27, which contains two quotations.

Some translations set each line of poetry farther to the right than the rest of the text to make it easier to read. The ULT does this with the poetry in 9:6 and 9:25-27.

Special concepts in this chapter

Man's relationship to animals

There is a noticeable shift in man's relationship with the animals on the earth. Before the flood, there apparently was harmony between man and the animals. After the flood, the animals fear man and man is permitted to eat the animals, something he was not allowed to do previously. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Life in the blood

This chapter introduces the concept that there is life in the blood of an animal and in man. In Hebrew thought, blood represents the life present in a living thing. This is an image used throughout Scripture. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/life and translationWords:bible/kt/blood)

Covenant with Noah

God made a covenant with Noah. This covenant was an unconditional promise God made to never destroy the whole world with a flood. Rainbows are a perpetual sign of this covenant. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/covenant and translationWords:bible/kt/promise)

A father's nakedness

In Noah's culture, it was unacceptable to see a father's nakedness. It was wrong for Ham to show his brothers their father's nakedness. Ham's actions were insulting or disrespectful. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Other possible translation difficulties in this chapter

"Be fruitful, multiply, and fill the earth"

This is a command that God gives. He expects Noah to obey him.

Genesis 9:1

This is God's blessing. He told Noah and his family to produce more humans like themselves, so that there would be many of them. The word "multiply" explains how they are to be "fruitful." See how you translated these commands in [Genesis 1:28](../01/28.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-doublet and translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

Genesis 9:2

The writer speaks of fear and dread as if they were physical objects that could be upon the animals. Alternate translation: "Every living animal ... and all the fish of the sea will be dreadfully afraid of you" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

The words "fear" and "dread" mean basically the same thing and emphasize how afraid the animals will be of mankind. Alternate translation: "A dreadful fear of you" or "A terrible fear of you" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-doublet)

This is the first of the four categories of animals that the writer lists, and not a summary of the rest of the animals that he mentions next.

This is a general term for things that fly. See how you translated this in [Genesis 1:21](../01/21.md).

This includes all types of small animals. See how you translated this in [Genesis 1:25](../01/25.md).

The hand represents control. This can be made active. Alternate translation: "They are given into your control" or "I have put them under your control" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy and translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Genesis 9:3

God continues speaking to Noah and his sons.

Genesis 9:4

Translators may add a footnote such as this: "The blood is a symbol for life." They may also add a footnote that says something like this: "God was commanding people not to eat meat while the blood was still in it. They had to drain out the blood first."

Genesis 9:5

God continues speaking to Noah and his sons.

This contrasts man's blood with the blood of animals ([Genesis 9:4](../09/04.md)).

It is implied that the blood is shed, or poured out, or spilled out. Alternate translation: "if anyone causes your blood to pour out" or "if anyone spills your blood" or "if anyone kills you" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit and translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

This refers to physical life.

This payment refers to the death of the murderer, not to money. Alternate translation: "I will require anyone who kills you to pay"

Here the word "hand" refers to the one who is responsible for something happening. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

"I will require any animal that takes your life to pay"

"I will require anyone who takes the life of another person to pay"

This phrase refers to the person in a very personal way. Alternate translation: "From that very man" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

Here "brother" is used as a general reference to relatives, such as members of the same tribe, clan, or people group.

Genesis 9:6

The shedding of blood is a metaphor for killing someone. This means that if a person murders someone, someone else must kill the murderer. However, "blood" is very significant in this passage and should be used in the translation if possible. Translate "sheds blood" with words that indicate a major loss of blood that causes death. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

"because God made people to be like him" or "because I made people in my own image"

Genesis 9:7

This is God's blessing. He told Noah and his family to produce more humans like themselves, so that there would be many of them. The word "multiply" explains how they are to be "fruitful." See how you translated this in [Genesis 1:28](../01/28.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-doublet and translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

Genesis 9:8

God was already speaking to them. This phrase marks a change in what God was going to speak about. Alternate translation: "God continued speaking to Noah and his sons" or "Then God went on to say"

Genesis 9:9

This phrase is used in English to mark the change from God talking about what Noah and his sons must do to talking about what God would do.

"make a covenant between you and me." See how you translated this in [Genesis 6:18](../06/18.md).

Genesis 9:11

God continues speaking to Noah and his sons.

"By saying this, I make my covenant with you." See how similar words are translated in [Genesis 6:18](../06/18.md).

Possible meanings for what "all flesh" represents are 1) all human beings or 2) all physical beings, including humans and animal. See how this is translated in [Genesis 6:12](../06/12.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

"There will never again be a flood that destroys the earth." There would be floods, but they would not destroy the whole earth.

Genesis 9:12

This means a reminder of something that was promised.

The covenant applies to Noah and his family and also to all generations that follow.

Genesis 9:14

God continues speaking to Noah and his sons.

"Whenever." It is something that would happen many times.

It is not clear who will see the rainbow, but because the covenant is between Yahweh and people, if you need to say who it is who will see the rainbow, it would be best to name both Yahweh and people. This can be translated in active form. Alternate translation: "people and I see the rainbow" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

the colorful strip of light that appears in the rain when the sun shines from behind the viewer

Genesis 9:15

This does not mean that God would first forget. Alternate translation: "I will think about my covenant"

The word "you" is plural. God was speaking to Noah and Noah's sons.

"every kind of living being"

Possible meanings for what "all flesh" represents are 1) all human beings or 2) all physical beings, including humans and animal. See how this is translated in [Genesis 6:12](../06/12.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

Genesis 9:16

God continues speaking to Noah and his sons.

"so that I will remember" or "so that I will think about"

God is speaking here. Alternate translation: "between me and every living creature"

"every kind of living being." See how you translated this in [Genesis 9:15](../09/15.md).

Genesis 9:17

God was already talking to Noah. This phrase marks the final part of what God was saying. Alternate translation: "God finished by saying to Noah" or "So God said to Noah"

Genesis 9:18

Verses 18-19 introduce the three sons of Noah, who will be an important part of the next story.

Ham was Canaan's true father.

Genesis 9:20

person who raises plants for food

Genesis 9:21

"drank too much wine"

The text does not specify how much of Noah's body was uncovered as he lay drunk. His sons' reactions show us that it was shameful.

Genesis 9:22

This refers to Noah.

Genesis 9:24

In verses 25-27 Noah pronounced a curse on Ham's son and blessings on Ham's brothers. What Noah said about them also applied to their descendants, as shown in the UST. Some translations set each line of poetry farther to the right than the rest of the text to make it easier to read. The ULT does this with the poetry in Noah's curse and blessings in verses 25-27.

He awoke after drinking wine and becoming drunk. He "became sober."

This refers to Ham. Alternate translation: "his youngest son, Ham"

Genesis 9:25

"I curse Canaan" or "May bad things happen to Canaan"

This was one of Ham's sons. Alternate translation: "Ham's son Canaan"

"the lowest servant of his brothers" or "the least important servant of his brothers"

This could refer either to Canaan's brothers or to his relatives in general.

Genesis 9:26

If you can, format these verses as they are formatted here to show your readers that this is poetry.

"Praised be Yahweh, the God of Shem," or "Yahweh, the God of Shem, is worthy of praise" or "I praise Yahweh, the God of Shem"

Genesis 9:27

"And let Canaan be Shem's servant." This includes Canaan's and Shem's descendants.

Possible meanings are 1) "May God make Japheth's territory larger" or 2) "May God cause Japheth to have many descendants."

"let him leave peacefully with Shem." This includes Japheth's and Shem's descendants.

"Let Canaan be Japheth's servant." This includes Canaan's and Japheth's descendants.

Genesis 10

Genesis 10 General Notes

Structure and formatting

This chapter begins a genealogical record. It also records the location of ancient people groups.

Special concepts in this chapter

Assyria and Nineveh

While these places may be located in the same area as the Assyria mentioned later in Scripture, they are not the same kingdom.

Other possible translation difficulties in this chapter

"Sons were born to"

This is an unusual phrase meaning "were sons of." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Genesis 10:1

"This is the account of Noah's sons." This sentence introduces the account of Noah's descendants in Genesis 10:1-11:9.

Genesis 10:5

"Javan's sons and descendants separated and moved to the coastlands and islands"

This refers to people who lived along the coast and on the islands.

"their homelands." These are the places that the people moved to and lived in.

"Each people group spoke its own language" or "The people groups divided themselves according to their languages"

Genesis 10:6

Mizraim is the Hebrew name for "Egypt."

Genesis 10:8

Possible meanings are 1) "mighty warrior" or 2) "mighty man" or 3) "powerful ruler."

Genesis 10:9

Possible meanings are 1) "in Yahweh's sight" or 2) "with Yahweh's help"

This introduces a proverb. Your language may introduce proverbs and sayings in a different way. Alternate translation: "This is the reason people say" (See: translationAcademy:translate/writing-proverbs)

Genesis 10:10

Possible meanings are 1) the first centers he developed or 2) the important cities.

Genesis 10:11

"Nimrod went into Assyria"

Genesis 10:13

The list of Noah's descendants continues.

Mizraim was one of Ham's sons. His descendants became the people of Egypt. Mizraim is the Hebrew name for Egypt.

Genesis 10:16

These names refer to larger groups of people that descended from Canaan.

Genesis 10:19

line between one person's land and another person's land

The direction south can be stated explicitly if needed. Alternate translation: "from Sidon city in the north as far south as Gaza town, which is near Gerar" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

The direction "east" or "inland" can be stated explicitly if needed. Alternate translation: "then east toward Sodom, Gomorrah, Admah, and Zeboyim towns, as far as Lasha" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 10:20

The word "these" refers to the people and people groups who were listed in verses [Genesis 6-19](./06.md).

"broken up according to their different languages"

"in their homelands"

Genesis 10:24

Arphaxad was one of Shem's sons.

Genesis 10:25

Translators may add a footnote note that says: "The name Peleg means 'division.'"

This can be made active. Alternate translation: "the people of the earth divided themselves" or "the people of the earth separated from one another" or "God divided the people of the earth" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Genesis 10:26

Joktan was one of Eber's sons. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 10:29

"These" here refers to the sons of Joktan.

Genesis 10:30

"The land they controlled" or "The land they lived in"

Genesis 10:31

The word "these" refers to the descendants of Shem ([Genesis 10:21-29](./21.md)).

Genesis 10:32

This refers back to all the people listed in [Genesis 10:1-31](./01.md).

"listed by"

"From these clans the nations divided and spread over the earth" or "These clans divided from each other and formed the nations of the earth"

This can be stated clearly or more explicitly. Alternate translation: "after the flood destroyed the earth" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 11

Genesis 11 General Notes

Structure and formatting

This chapter is a story traditionally referred to as the "Tower of Babel."

This chapter seeks to answer the questions: why do people speak different languages? how did people become so dispersed across the earth? God's punishment described in this chapter may also explain why the world has racial and ethnic divisions.

Special concepts in this chapter

Age of people when they die

After the flood, people began to live shorter lives. This chapter begins to record the shortening of the average lifespan.

Important figures of speech in this chapter

Personification

The statement "Yahweh came down to see" is a type of personification. Yahweh always knows what happens on earth. This statement indicates that Yahweh is about to bring judgment on mankind. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-personification and translationWords:bible/kt/judge)

Other possible translation difficulties in this chapter

"Let us build ourselves a city and a tower whose top will reach to the sky"

The people were very full of pride and rebelled against God in this action. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 11:1

This word shows that the writer is beginning a new part of the story.

This represents all the people on the earth. Alternate translation: "all the people on the earth" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

These two phrases mean basically the same thing and emphasize that all people spoke the same language. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-parallelism)

Genesis 11:2

"they moved around"

Possible meanings are 1) "in the east" or 2) "from the east" or 3) "to the east." The preferred choice is "in the east" because Shinar is to the east of where scholars believe the ark came to rest.

stopped moving from one place to another and began to live at one location

Genesis 11:3

If your language has a way of urging or commanding people to begin work, like the English "Come on!" you might use it here.

People make bricks out of clay and heat them in a very hot oven to make them hard and strong.

a thick, sticky, black liquid that comes up from the ground

This is a thick substance made of lime powder, clay, sand, and water used to make stones or bricks stick together.

Genesis 11:4

"let us make our reputation great"

reputation

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "we will separate from each other and live in different places" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Genesis 11:5

"the people"

The information about where he came down from can be made explicit: "came down from heaven." This does not tell how he came down. Use a general word meaning "came down." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

"to observe" or "to look more closely"

Genesis 11:6

All the people were one big group and they all spoke the same language.

Possible meanings are 1) "they have begun to do this," meaning that they have begun to build the tower but it is not finished, or 2) "this is just the first thing they have done," meaning that in future they will do greater things.

This can be stated in positive form. Alternate translation: "anything they intend to do will be possible for them" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-doublenegatives)

Genesis 11:7

If your language has a way of urging or commanding people to begin work, like the English "Come on!" you might use it here. See how this is translated in [Genesis 11:3](../11/03.md).

The word "us" is plural even though it refers to God. Some translate it as "let me go down" or "I will go down." If you do this, consider adding a footnote to say that the pronoun is plural. See the note on "Let us make" in [Genesis 1:26](../01/26.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-pronouns)

This means that Yahweh would cause the people all over the earth to stop speaking the same language. Alternate translation: "mix up their language" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

This was the purpose of confusing their language. Alternate translation: "so that they will not be able to understand what each other is saying" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 11:8

"from the city"

Genesis 11:9

The name "Babel" sounds like the word that means "confused." Translators may want to add a footnote about this.

It means that Yahweh caused the people all over the earth to no longer speak the same language. Alternate translation: "mixed up the language of the whole earth" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 11:10

The rest of this chapter lists the line of Shem's descendants down to Abram.

This sentence begins the list of Shem's descendants.

This is the flood from Noah's time when people had become so evil that God sent a worldwide flood to cover the earth.

"had his son Arphaxad" or "his son Arphaxad was born"

a man's name (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Translators may write the words or the numerals "100" and "2." (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

Genesis 11:11

Translators may write the words or the numeral "500." (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

Genesis 11:12

"his son Shelah was born"

This is a man's name. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 11:13

"four hundred and three years" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

Genesis 11:14

The records in Genesis 11:12-25 have the same format. See how you translated them in [Genesis 11:12-13](./12.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names and translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

Genesis 11:16

The records in Genesis 11:12-25 have the same format. See how you translated them [Genesis 11:12-13](./12.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names and translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

Genesis 11:18

The records in Genesis 11:12-25 have the same format. See how you translated them in [Genesis 11:12-13](./12.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names and translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

Genesis 11:20

The records in Genesis 11:12-25 have the same format. See how you translated them in [Genesis 11:12-13](./12.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names and translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

Genesis 11:22

The records in Genesis 11:12-25 have the same format. See how you translated them in [Genesis 11:12-13](./12.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names and translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

Genesis 11:24

The records in Genesis 11:12-25 have the same format. See how you translated them in [Genesis 11:12-13](./12.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names and translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

Genesis 11:26

We do not know the birth order of his sons.

Genesis 11:27

This sentence introduces the account of Terah's descendants. Genesis 11:27-25:11 tells about Terah's descendants, particularly his son Abraham. Alternate translation: "This is the account of Terah's descendants" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 11:28

This means that Haran died while his father was still living. Alternate translation: "Haran died while his father, Terah, was with him" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 11:29

"married wives"

This is a female name. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 11:30

This word is used to introduce new information about Sarai that will become important in later chapters.

This term describes a woman who is physically unable to conceive or bear a child. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-euphemism)

Genesis 11:31

Here the word "his" refers to Terah.

"his daughter-in-law Sarai, who was the wife of his son Abram"

These are two different names and they are spelled differently in Hebrew. One refers to a person and the other refers to a city. (The "h" sound in the city's name is louder than the "h" sound in the person's name.) You might choose to spell them differently in your language to show this.

Genesis 11:32

"two hundred and five years" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

Genesis 12

Genesis 12 General Notes

Special concepts in this chapter

Abram

When God said, "Go from your country, and from your relatives," he established several new people groups. These groups descended from Abram.

God's covenant with Abraham

God made a covenant with Abram. This covenant was not conditioned upon anything that Abraham needed to do, but the fulfillment of its promises is conditioned upon the actions of each generation of his descendants. It has not yet been fulfilled in its entirety. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/covenant and translationWords:bible/kt/fulfill and translationWords:bible/kt/promise)

Other possible translation difficulties in this chapter

"They will kill me"

Abram was afraid the Egyptians would see him as a foreigner and upon seeing his beautiful wife, they would try to kill him. This would free Sarai to marry someone else. Apparently, it would have been easy for them to kill a foreigner without punishment. If she was Abram's sister, they would have shown favor to him. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit and translationWords:bible/kt/favor)

Genesis 12:1

This word is used to mark a new part of the story.

"Go from your land, from your family"

Genesis 12:2

Here "you" is singular and refers to Abram, but Abram represents his descendants. Alternate translation: "I will start a great nation through you" or "I will make your descendants become a great nation" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

The word "name" represents the person's reputation. Alternate translation: "make you famous" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

The words "to other people" are understood. Alternate translation: "you will be a blessing to other people" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-ellipsis)

Genesis 12:3

"I will curse whoever treats you in a shameful way" or "if anyone treats you as worthless, I will curse him"

This can be made active. Alternate translation: "I will bless all the families of the earth through you" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

"Because of you" or "Because I have blessed you"

Genesis 12:5

This includes animals and non-living property.

Possible meanings are 1) "slaves that they had accumulated" or 2) "the people whom they had gathered to be with them."

Genesis 12:6

Only Abram's name is mentioned because he was the head of the family. God had given him the command to take his family and go there. Alternate translation: "So Abram and his family went through the land" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

"the land of Canaan"

Moreh was probably the name of a place. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 12:7

"Yahweh, because he had appeared to him"

Genesis 12:8

Abram had many people with him as he traveled. People who moved from place to place lived in tents. Alternate translation: "they set up their tents"

"prayed in the name of Yahweh" or "worshiped Yahweh"

Genesis 12:9

You may need to make explicit that he took his tent with him. "Then Abram took his tent and continued journeying." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

"toward the Negev region" or "toward the south" or "south to the Negev desert"

Genesis 12:10

The crops did not grow well that season. This can be made explicit. Alternate translation: "There was a shortage of food" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

"in the area" or "in the land where Abram was living"

Possible meanings are 1) "went further south" or 2) "went away from Canaan into." It would be best to translate this using your usual words for going from a higher place to a lower place.

Genesis 12:12

The reason they would kill Abram can be made explicit: "they will kill me so that they can marry you" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 12:13

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "so that, because of you, they will not kill me" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Genesis 12:14

Possible meanings are 1) This phrase is used here to mark where the action starts, and if your language has a way for doing this, you could consider using it here, or 2) "And that was what happened" .

Genesis 12:15

"Pharaoh's officials saw Sarai" or "the king's officials saw her"

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "Pharaoh took her into his household" or "Pharaoh had his soldiers take her into his household" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Sarai

Possible meanings are 1) "Pharoah's family," that is, as a wife, or 2) "Pharaoah's house" or "Pharaoh's palace," a euphemism for Pharaoh making her one of his wives. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-euphemism)

Genesis 12:16

"for Sarai's sake" or "because of her"

Genesis 12:17

This can be made more explicit. Alternate translation: "because Pharaoh intended to take Sarai, Abram's wife, to be his own wife" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 12:18

"Pharaoh called Abram" or "Pharaoh ordered Abram to come to him"

Pharaoh used this rhetorical question to show how angry he was about what Abram had done to him. It can also be stated as an exclamation. Alternate translation: "You have done a terrible thing to me!" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion)

Genesis 12:20

"Then Pharaoh directed his officials concerning Abram"

"the officials sent Abram away from Pharoah, with his wife and all his possessions"

Genesis 13

Genesis 13 General Notes

Special concepts in this chapter

Abram's faith

Since the land could not support both Lot's and Abraham's family, they each went their own way. Even though good land was not plentiful, Abraham allowed Lot to choose the better land because he trusted in God to fulfill his promises. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/trust and translationWords:bible/kt/fulfill and translationWords:bible/kt/promise)

God's covenant with Abram

God made a covenant with Abram. This covenant was not conditioned upon anything that Abraham needed to do, but the fulfillment of its promises is conditioned upon the actions of each generation of his descendants. It has not yet been fulfilled in its entirety. This chapter continues the covenant which began in the previous chapter. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/covenant)

Other possible translation difficulties in this chapter

Built an altar

Abram would have built an altar in order to offer sacrifices to Yahweh. There is an implicit understanding that building an altar was an act of worship. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 13:1

"left" or "departed from"

The Negev was a desert region in southern Canaan, west of Egypt. This can be made explicit. Alternate translation: "went back to the Negev desert" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 13:2

"Abram had many animals, much silver, and much gold"

"livestock" or "cattle"

Genesis 13:3

Abram and his family traveled by stages, going from place to place. This can be made explicit. Alternate translation: "They continued on their journey" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Translators may add a footnote that says "See Genesis 12:8." The time of his travel can be made explicit. Alternate translation: "to the place where he had set up his tent before he went to Egypt" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 13:4

"prayed in the name of Yahweh" or "worshiped Yahweh." See how you translated this in [Genesis 12:8](../12/08.md).

Genesis 13:5

This word is used to show what follows is background information to help the reader understand the events that follow. (See: translationAcademy:translate/writing-background)

Genesis 13:6

There was not enough grazing land and water for all their animals.

This includes livestock, which need pasture and water.

"could not live together"

Genesis 13:7

This is another reason that the land could not support them all.

Genesis 13:8

"Let's not quarrel"

arguments or fights

"let's stop the men who take care of our animals from quarreling"

"because we are family"

"kinsmen" or "relatives." Lot was Abraham's nephew.

Genesis 13:9

This rhetorical question can be translated as a positive statement. Alternate translation: "The whole land is available for you to use." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion)

Abraham was speaking kindly to Lot and encouraging him to do something that would help them both. "Let's separate."

Possible meanings are 1) "If you go one way, then I will go the other" or 2) "If you go to the north, I will go to the south." Abram let Lot choose the part of the land he wanted, and Abram would take what remained.

Genesis 13:10

This refers to the general region of the Jordan River.

"had much water"

"like the garden of Yahweh or like the land of Egypt." These were two different places.

This is another name for the garden of Eden.

Use the same word for "garden" as you used in [Genesis 2:8](../02/08.md).

This anticipates something that would happen later. It is important here because it explains why Lot settled in a region that later was not fertile.

Genesis 13:11

"the kinsmen" or "the families." This refers to Lot and Abram with their households.

Genesis 13:12

"Abram made his home" or "Abram stayed"

"the land of the Canaanites"

Possible meanings are 1) "He set up his tents near Sodom" or 2) "He moved his tents around in an area that reached all the way to Sodom."

Genesis 13:14

"after Lot left Abraham"

Genesis 13:17

"walk around all over the whole land"

Genesis 13:18

This was the name of the man who owned the oak trees. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

This is the name of a place. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

"an altar for worshiping Yahweh"

Genesis 14

Genesis 14 General Notes

Structure and formatting

Some translations set each line of poetry farther to the right than the rest of the text to make it easier to read. The ULT does this with the poetry in 14:19-20.

Special concepts in this chapter

Names of places

Sometimes the names of places in Scripture are referred to by the name used during the time of the writer. For example, the location referred to as Dan was not yet known by that name because Dan had not yet come to live there. Moses, the author of Genesis, would have known this location as Dan.

Melchizedek

Melchizedek was both a priest and a king. Because of this, he parallels the roles of Jesus. Melchizedek is an important figure in the book of Hebrews. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/priest)

Other possible translation difficulties in this chapter

God Most High

Melchizedek worshiped the God Most High. This is probably a reference to the true and only God who created the heavens and the earth and came to be known as Yahweh. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/heaven)

Genesis 14:1

This phrase is used here to mark the beginning of a new part of the story. If your language has a way for doing this, you could consider using it here.

"in the time of"

These are names of men. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

These are names of places. See how you translated "Shinar" in [Genesis 10:10](../10/10.md) (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 14:2

"they went to war" or "they started a war" or "they prepared for war"

Genesis 14:3

The information that their armies were with them can be made explicit. Alternate translation: "These latter five kings and their armies joined together" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 14:4

The events in verses 4-7 happened before verse 3. Your language may have a way of showing this.

They probably had to pay him taxes and serve in his army. Alternate translation: "they had been under the control of Kedorlaomer" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

"they refused to serve him" or "they stopped serving him"

Genesis 14:5

They did this because the other kings rebelled.

These are the names of people groups. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

These are the names of places. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

This name in Hebrew is different from the name of Noah's son, which is spelled the same way in English.

Genesis 14:6

This is the name of a people group. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

These are the names of places. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

This phrase helps readers understand where El Paran was. It can be translated as a separate sentence if necessary. Alternate translation: "El Paran. El Paran is near the desert" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-distinguish)

Genesis 14:7

Verses 8 and 9 repeats what was said in [Genesis 14:3](../14/03.md) and continues to tell what happened when the kings came together to fight.

The word "they" refers to the four foreign kings who were attacking the region of Canaan. Their names were Amraphel, Arioch, Chedorlaomer, and Tidal. Alternate translation: "they turned and went" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-go)

This phrase tells which Amorite people were defeated. There were other Amorite people who lived in other places.

Genesis 14:8

The city of Bela was also called Zoar. This information could also be put at the end of the sentence. "the king of Bela went out and prepared for battle. Bela is also called Zoar."

"joined battle" or "drew up battle lines." Some translators may need to also say that the armies fought, as the UST does in verse 9. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 14:9

Since the five kings were listed first, some languages might prefer to translate this as "five kings against four."

Genesis 14:10

This word introduces background information about the valley of Siddim. Your language may have another way of introducing background information. (See: translationAcademy:translate/writing-background)

"had many tar pits." These were holes in the ground that had tar in them.

a thick, sticky, black liquid that comes up from the ground. See how this is translated in [Genesis 11:3](../11/03.md).

Here the kings represent themselves and their armies. Alternate translation: the kings of Sodom and Gomorrah and their armies" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

Possible meanings are 1) some of their soldiers fell in the tar pits or 2) the kings themselves fell in the tar pits. Since [Genesis 14:17](../14/17.md) says that the king of Sodom went to meet Abram, the first meaning is more likely correct. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

"Those who did not die in battle and did not fall in the pits"

Genesis 14:11

The words "Sodom" and "Gomorrah" are metonyms for the people who lived in those cities. Alternate translation: "the wealth of the people of Sodom and Gomorrah" or "the property of the people of Sodom and Gomorrah" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

"their food and drink"

"they went away"

Genesis 14:12

The phrases "Abram's brother's son" and "who was living in Sodom" remind the reader of things that were written earlier about Lot. Alternate translation: "they also took Lot, along with all his possessions. Lot was Abram's brother's son and was living in Sodom at that time" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-distinguish)

Genesis 14:13

"A man escaped from the battle and came"

"Abram was living." This introduces background information. (See: translationAcademy:translate/writing-background)

"were treaty-partners with Abram" or "had a peace agreement with Abram"

Genesis 14:14

This is a reference to Abram's nephew Lot.

"three hundred and eighteen trained men" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

"men who were trained to fight"

"men who were born in Abram's household." They were children of Abram's servants.

"chased them"

This is a city in the far north of Canaan, far from Abram's camp.

Genesis 14:15

This probably refers to a battle strategy. "Abram divided the men into several groups, and they attacked their enemies from various directions"

Genesis 14:16

This refers to the things that the enemies had stolen from the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah.

"Lot's property that the enemies had stolen from Lot"

"as well as the women and other people that the four kings had captured"

Genesis 14:17

The implied information about where he was returning to can be made explicit. Alternate translation: "returned to where he was living" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 14:18

This is the first time this king is mentioned.

People commonly ate bread and wine. See how you translated "bread" in [Genesis 3:19](../03/19.md) and "wine" in [Genesis 9:21](../09/21.md).

Genesis 14:19

King Melchizedek blessed Abram.

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "May God Most High, the Creator of heaven and earth, bless Abram" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

This refers to the place where God lives.

Genesis 14:20

"God Most High, because he has given." The phrase starting with "who has given" tells us something more about God Most High.

This is a way of praising God. See how you translated "blessed be" in [Genesis 9:26](../09/26.md).

"into your control" or "into your power"

Genesis 14:21

The phrase "the people" may refer to the people of Sodom that the enemies had captured. Abram rescued them when he rescued Lot.

Genesis 14:22

This means "I have taken an oath" or "I have made a promise."

Genesis 14:24

"I take from you only what my young men have already eaten." Abram was refusing to accept anything for himself, but acknowledged that the soldiers had eaten some of the supplies during the journey back to Sodom after the battle.

The full meaning of this statement can be made explicit. Alternate translation: "the share of the recovered property that belongs to the men who helped me get it back" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

These are the allies of Abram ([Genesis 14:13](../14/13.md)). Because they were Abram's allies they fought battles alongside him. The full meaning of this statement can be made explicit. Alternate translation: "my allies Aner, Eshkol, and Mamre" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 15

Genesis 15 General Notes

Special concepts in this chapter

Inheritance

In the ancient Near East, a person's children inherited the property and land of their parents. Abraham doubted the fulfillment of God's covenant because he did not have any children to whom to give his land. This showed a lack of faith. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/inherit and translationWords:bible/kt/fulfill,translationWords:bible/kt/covenant and translationWords:bible/kt/faith)

Fulfilling a promise

In the ancient Near East, two people performed a similar sacrifice by dividing animals in half. It was a way to say to the other person, "may this happen to me if I do not fulfill my promise." The event recorded here indicates that God will fulfill his promise and only he is responsible for bringing it about. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/fulfill and translationWords:bible/kt/promise)

God's covenant with Abraham

God made a covenant with Abram. This covenant was not conditioned upon anything that Abraham needed to do, but the fulfillment of its promises is conditioned upon the actions of each generation of his descendants. This covenant has not yet been fulfilled in its entirety.

Genesis 15:1

"These things" refers to when the kings fought and Abram rescued Lot.

The idiom "the word of Yahweh came to" is used to introduce a special message from God. Alternate translation: "Yahweh gave a message to Abram in a vision. He said, 'Fear" or "Yahweh spoke this message to Abram in a vision: 'Fear" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

God used these two metaphors to tell Abram about his character and his relationship to Abram. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Soldiers use a shield to protect themselves from their enemies. Alternate translation: "I will protect you like shield" or "I am your shield to protect you" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Possible meanings are 1) "I myself will be all that you need" or 2) "I will give you all you need."

the result of a person's actions. This seems to be a metonym for the gracious blessing God would give Abram. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Genesis 15:3

"Abram continued speaking and said, 'Since you have given me'"

Genesis 15:4

The word "behold" emphasizes the fact that the word of Yahweh came to Abraham again.

The idiom "The word of Yahweh came to" is used to introduce a special message from God. See how you translated this idiom in [Genesis 15:1](./01.md). Alternate translation: "Yahweh gave him a message. He said, 'This" or "Yahweh spoke this message to him: 'This" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

This refers to Eliezer of Damascus.

"the one that you will father" or "your very own son." Abram's own son would become his heir.

Genesis 15:5

"count the stars"

Just as Abram would not be able to count all the stars, he would not be able to count all his descendants because there would be so many.

Genesis 15:6

This means he accepted and trusted what Yahweh said was true.

"Yahweh counted Abram's belief as righteousness" or "Yahweh considered Abram righteous because Abram believed him"

Genesis 15:7

Yahweh was reminding Abraham of what he had already done so that Abraham would know that Yahweh had the power to give Abram what he promised him.

"to receive it" or "so that you will possess it"

Genesis 15:8

Abram was asking for more proof that Yahweh would give him the land.

Genesis 15:11

"the dead bodies of the animals and birds"

"Abram chased the birds away." He made sure the birds did not eat the dead animals.

Genesis 15:12

This is an idiom. Alternate translation: "Abraham slept deeply" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

"an extreme darkness that terrified him"

"surrounded him"

Genesis 15:13

people who are at home in one place but have to live in another place

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "the owners of that land will enslave your descendants and oppress them" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Genesis 15:14

Yahweh continued to speak to Abram while Abram dreamed.

Here "judge" is a metonym for what will happen after God makes the judgment. Alternate translation: "I will punish" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

The full meaning of this statement can be made explicit. Alternate translation: "that your descendants will serve" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

This is an idiom. Alternate translation: "many possessions" or "great wealth" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

Genesis 15:15

This is a polite way of saying "you will die." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-euphemism)

The word "fathers" is a synecdoche for all ancestors. Alternate translation: "ancestors" or "ancestral fathers" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

"you will be very old when you die and your family buries your body"

Genesis 15:16

Here one generation refers to a lifespan of 100 years. "After four hundred years"

"your descendants will come back here." Abraham's descendants would come to the land where Abram was then living, the land that Yahweh had promised to give to him.

"is not yet complete" or "will get much worse before I punish them"

Genesis 15:17

The word "behold" here alerts us to pay attention to the surprising information that follows.

God did this to show Abram that he was making a covenant with him.

"passed through between the two rows of animal pieces"

Genesis 15:18

In this covenant God promises to bless Abram, and he will continue to bless him as long as Abram follows him.

By saying this, God was giving the land to Abram's descendants. God was doing this then, but the descendants would not go into the land until many years later.

Genesis 15:19

These are the names of groups of people who lived in that land. God would allow Abraham's descendants to conquer these people and take their land. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 15:20

These are the names of groups of people who lived in that land. God would allow Abraham's descendants to conquer these people and take their land. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 15:21

These are the names of groups of people who lived in that land. God would allow Abraham's descendants to conquer these people and take their land. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 16

Genesis 16 General Notes

Structure and formatting

Some translations set each line of poetry farther to the right than the rest of the text to make it easier to read. The ULT does this with the poetry in 16:11-12.

Special concepts in this chapter

Plural marriage

Abram married Hagar while he was also married to Sarai. Even though Abram had his wife's permission, this was an immoral and sinful action. It also showed a lack of faith in God. Sarai quickly became jealous of Hagar. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/sin, translationWords:bible/kt/faith and translationWords:bible/kt/jealous and translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 16:1

This word is used in English to introduce a new part of the story and background information about Sarai. (See: translationAcademy:translate/writing-background)

"slave-girl." This type of slave would serve the woman of the household.

Genesis 16:2

"from giving birth to children"

"I will build my family through her"

"Abram did what Sarai said"

Genesis 16:4

"she despised her mistress" or "she thought that she was more valuable than her mistress"

Here this refers to Sarai. A mistress has authority over her slave. Alternate translation: "her owner" or "Sarai"

Genesis 16:5

"This injustice against me"

"is your responsibility" or "is your fault"

Sarai used the word "embrace" here to refer to him sleeping with her. Alternate translation: "I gave you my servant so that you would sleep with her" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-euphemism)

This can be active. Alternate translation: "she hated me" or "she began to hate me" or "she thought she was better than me" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

"I want Yahweh to say whether this is my fault or your fault" or "I want Yahweh to decide which one of us is right." The phrase "to judge between" means to decide which person is right in a dispute between them.

Genesis 16:6

"Listen to me" or "Pay attention"

"under your authority"

"Sarai treated Hagar very badly"

"Hagar fled from Sarai"

Genesis 16:7

Possible meanings are 1) Yahweh made himself look like an angel or 2) this was one of Yahweh's angels or 3) this was a special messenger from God (some scholars think it was Jesus). Since the phrase is not well understood, it is best to simply translate it as "the angel of Yahweh" using the normal word that you use for "angel."

The wilderness area she went to was a desert. Alternate translation: "desert"

This was the name of a place south of Canaan and east of Egypt.

Genesis 16:8

Here this refers to Sarai. A mistress has authority over her slave. See how "her mistress" is translated in [Genesis 16:4](../16/04.md). Alternate translation: "my owner"

Genesis 16:9

"The angel of Yahweh said to Hagar"

Sarai. See how "her mistress" is translated in [Genesis 16:4](../16/04.md).

Genesis 16:10

See the note about this phrase in [Genesis 16:7](../16/07.md).

When he said "I," he was referring to Yahweh. When translating what is in the quote, do it as the angel of Yahweh did and use the word "I" when referring to Yahweh.

"I will give you very many descendants"

"so many that no one will be able to count them"

Genesis 16:11

See the note about this phrase in [Genesis 16:7](../16/07.md).

"Look" or "Listen" or "Pay attention"

"give birth to a son"

"you will name him." The word "you" refers to Hagar.

Translators may add a footnote that says "The name 'Ishmael' means 'God has heard.'"

She has been afflicted by distress and suffering.

Genesis 16:12

This was not an insult. It may mean that Ishmael would be independent and strong like a wild donkey. Alternate translation: "He will be like a wild donkey among men" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

"He will be every man's enemy"

"everyone will be his enemy"

This can also mean "he will live in hostility with."

"his relatives" or "the other members of his family"

Genesis 16:13

"Yahweh, because he spoke to her"

Hagar used this rhetorical question to express her amazement that she was still alive even after she met God. People expected that if they met God, they would die. Here seeing represents living. Alternate translation: "I am surprised that I am still alive, ... me." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion and translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Genesis 16:14

Translators may add a footnote that says "Beer Lahai Roi means 'the well of the living one who sees me.'" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

The word "behold" here draws attention to the fact that the well was in a place that the author and his readers knew. Alternate translation: "in fact, it is between Kadesh and Bered" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 16:15

Hagar's return to Sarai and Abram is implict. You can make this more explicit. Alternate translation: "So Hagar went back and gave birth" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

"named his son by Hagar" or "named his and Hagar's son"

Genesis 16:16

This introduces background information about Abram's age when these things happened. Your language may have a special way to mark background information. (See: translationAcademy:translate/writing-background)

This means "gave birth to Abram's son, Ishmael." The focus is on Abram having a son.

Genesis 17

Genesis 17 General Notes

Special concepts in this chapter

"The father of a multitude of nations"

Abram came to have many descendants. He had so many descendants that many of his immediate descendants became large people groups and nations.

God's covenant with Abraham

God made a covenant with Abram. This covenant was not conditioned upon anything that Abraham needed to do, but the fulfillment of its promises is conditioned upon the actions of each generation of his descendants. It has not yet been fulfilled in its entirety. It is important to note in this chapter that Isaac is the son who receives the promises associated with the covenant and not Ishmael. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/covenant and translationWords:bible/kt/fulfill and translationWords:bible/kt/promise)

Circumcision

Circumcision was an unusual practice in the ancient Near East. It served to separate the Hebrew people from the rest of the world. This chapter records the beginning of this practice among Abraham and his descendants. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/circumcise)

Name change

In Scripture, a change in name always occurs at a highly significant point in a person's life. The beginning of the practice of circumcision was a significant event in the history of the Hebrew people.

Genesis 17:1

This phrase is used here to mark the beginning of a new part of the story. If your language has a way for doing this, you could consider using it here.

"the all-powerful God" or "the God who has all power"

Walking is a metaphor for living, and "before me" or "in my presence" here is a metaphor for obedience. Alternate translation: "Live the way I want you to" or "Obey me" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Genesis 17:2

"If you do this, then I will confirm"

"I will give my covenant" or "I will make my covenant"

In this covenant God promises to bless Abram, but he also requires Abram to obey him.

Here "multiply you" is an idiom that means he will give him more descendants. Alternate translation: "greatly increase the number of your descendants" or "give you very many descendants" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

Genesis 17:3

"Abram threw himself face down on the ground" or "Abraham immediately lay down with his face to the ground." He did this to show that he respected God and would obey him.

Genesis 17:4

God used this phrase to introduce what he would do for Abram as part of his covenant with Abram.

The word "behold" here says that what comes next is certain: "my covenant is certainly with you."

"the father of a great number of nations" or "the one after whom many nations name themselves"

Genesis 17:6

"I will cause you to have very many descendants"

"I will cause your descendants to become nations"

"among your descendants there will be kings" or "some of your descendants will be kings"

Genesis 17:7

God continues speaking to Abraham.

"for each generation"

"as a covenant that will last forever"

"to be your God and your descendants' God" or "covenant"

Genesis 17:8

"Canaan, as an everlasting possession" or "Canaan, to possess forever"

Genesis 17:9

God uses this phrase to introduce what Abram would have to do as part of God's covenant with him.

"observe my covenant" or "honor my covenant" or "obey my covenant"

Genesis 17:10

"This is a requirement of my covenant" or "This is part of my covenant." This sentence introduces the part of the covenant that Abram must do.

This can be stated in an active form. Alternate translation: "You must circumcise every male among you" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

This refers to human males.

Genesis 17:11

Some communities may prefer a less descriptive expression such as "You must be circumcised." If your translation of "be circumcised" already includes the word for "foreskin", you do not need to repeat it. This can be made active. Alternate translation: "You must circumcise every male among you" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-euphemism and translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

"the sign that shows that the covenant exists"

Possible meanings are 1) "the sign" or 2) "a sign." The first means that there was one sign, and the second means that there may have been more than one sign. Here the word "sign" means a reminder of something that God had promised.

Genesis 17:12

God continues speaking to Abraham.

"Every human male"

"in every generation"

This refers to slaves. This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "any male that you buy" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Genesis 17:13

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "you will mark my covenant in your flesh" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

"as a permanent covenant." Because it was marked in flesh, no one could easily erase it.

Genesis 17:14

This can be stated in active form, and you may leave out words that will give wrong meaning in your language. Alternate translation: "male whom you have not circumcised" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Possible meanings are 1) "I will cut off any uncircumcised male ... foreskin from his people" or 2) "I want you to cut off any uncircumcised male ... foreskin from his people."

Possible meanings are 1) "killed" or 2) "sent away from the community." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-euphemism)

"He has not obeyed the rules of my covenant." This is the reason that he would be cut off from his people.

Genesis 17:15

The words "As for" introduce the next person God talks about.

Genesis 17:16

"I will make her bear a son for you"

"she will be the ancestor of many nations" or "her descendants will become nations"

"Kings of peoples will descend from her" or "Some of her descendants will be kings of peoples"

Genesis 17:17

"thought to himself" or "said to himself silently"

Abraham used this rhetorical question because he did not believe that this could happen. Alternate translation: "Surely a man who is a hundred years old cannot father a child!" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion)

Again Abraham used a rhetorical question because he did not believe this could happen. The phrase "who is ninety years old" tells why Abraham did not believe that Sarah could bear a son. Alternate translation: "Sarah is ninety years old. Could she bear a son?" or "Sarah is ninety years old. Surely she could not bear a son!" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion and translationAcademy:translate/figs-distinguish)

Genesis 17:18

"Please let Ishmael inherit the covenant that you have made with me" or "Perhaps Ishmael could receive your covenant blessing." Abraham suggested something that he believed really could happen.

Genesis 17:19

God said this to correct Abraham's belief that Sarah could not have a son.

The word "you" refers to Abraham.

Genesis 17:20

The words "As for" show that God is switching from talking about the baby that would be born to talking about Ishmael.

"Look" or "Listen" or "Pay attention to what I am about to tell you"

This is an idiom that means "will cause him to have many children." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

"I will cause him to have many descendants"

"chiefs" or "rulers." Ishmael's twelve sons are different from the twelve sons of Jacob who were the fathers of the twelve tribes of Israel.

Genesis 17:21

God returns to talking about his covenant with Abraham and emphasizes that he would fulfill his promise with Isaac, not with Ishmael.

Genesis 17:22

"When God had finished talking with Abraham"

"God left Abraham"

Genesis 17:23

"every human male in Abraham's household" or "every male person in Abraham's household." It refers to human males of all ages: babies, boys, and men.

Genesis 17:27

"This includes those who were born in his household and those he had bought from foreigners"

This refers to servants or slaves.

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "those whom he had bought" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Genesis 18

Genesis 18 General Notes

Special concepts in this chapter

Three men

The three men who visited Abraham were probably angels. This is evident from Abraham's reaction to them. Also, it appears Abraham knew that he was speaking directly to Yahweh through these men. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/angel and translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Disbelief

When Sarah heard the news that she was going to have a baby, she laughed in disbelief because she was considered too old to have a baby. She also asked a rhetorical question in order to further show her disbelief. This would have been considered an insult to God. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/believe and translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion)

In his exchange with God, Abraham did not show any sign of unbelief. Instead, he is asking God for mercy because he trusted in the character of God. He does not question God's power to accomplish things as Sarah had done. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/trust)

Other possible translation difficulties in this chapter

Sarah's age

It should be apparent that Sarah was physically no longer able to have children because of her age. There is a natural period in a woman's life when she stops being able to have children. The text assumes the reader understands that Sarah has already experienced this event. In English, this is called "menopause." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 18:1

This was the name of the man who owned the oak trees.

"at the opening of the tent" or "at the entrance of the tent"

"hottest time of day"

Genesis 18:2

"He looked up and saw, and behold, three men were standing"

"he was surprised because he saw"

"nearby" or "there." They were near him, but far enough away for him to run to them.

This means to bend over to humbly express respect and honor toward someone.

Genesis 18:3

This is a title of respect. Possible meanings are 1) Abraham knew that one of these men was God or 2) Abraham knew that these men came on behalf of God.

Here "found favor" is an idiom that means be approved of or that the Lord is pleased with him, and "your sight" is a metaphor representing the Lord's evaluation. Alternate translation: "if you have evaluated me and approve" or "if you are pleased with me" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom and translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy and translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Abraham is speaking to one of the men. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-you)

"please do not keep on going past"

"me." Abraham refers to himself this way in order to show respect to his guest.

Genesis 18:4

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "Let me bring you some water" or "My servant will bring you some water" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

"some water." Saying "little" was a polite way of showing generosity. Abraham would give them more than enough water.

This custom helped tired travelers to refresh themselves after walking long distances.

Genesis 18:5

"some food." Saying "little" was a polite way of showing generosity. Abraham would give them more than enough food.

Abraham speaks to all three of the men, so "you" and "your" are plural. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-you)

Genesis 18:6

about 22 liters (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-bvolume)

This bread was probably cooked quickly on a hot stone. It may have been flat or round like small loaves or rolls.

Genesis 18:7

"the servant hurried"

"to cut it up and roast it"

Genesis 18:8

This refers to the solid part of fermented milk. It may have been yogurt or cheese.

"the roasted calf"

"before the three visitors"

Genesis 18:9

"Then they said to Abraham"

Genesis 18:10

The word "He" refers to the man whom Abraham called "Lord" in [Genesis 18:3](../18/03.md).

"when this same season comes next year" or "about this time next year"

The word "see" here alerts us to pay attention to the surprising information that follows.

"at the opening of the tent" or "at the entrance of the tent"

Genesis 18:12

You may want to add "of having a baby." Sarah used this rhetorical question because she did not believe that she could have a child. Alternate translation: "I cannot believe that I will experience the joy of having a child. My master is also too old" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion)

This means "since my husband is also old."

This is a title of respect that Sarah gave to her husband Abraham.

Genesis 18:13

God used this rhetorical question to show that he knew what Sarah was thinking and that he was not pleased with it. He repeats Sarah's rhetorical question ([Genesis 18:12](../18/12.md)) using different words. Alternate translation: "Sarah was wrong to laugh and say, 'I will not bear a child because I am too old!'"(See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion)

Genesis 18:14

"Is there anything that Yahweh cannot do?" Yahweh speaks of himself as if he were speaking of someone else to remind Abraham that he, Yahweh, is great and can do anything. Alternate translation: "There is nothing that I, Yahweh, cannot do!" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-123person and translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion)

"At the time I have appointed, which is in the spring"

Genesis 18:15

"The Sarah denied it by saying"

"Yahweh replied"

"Yes, you did laugh." This means "No, that is not true; you did in fact laugh."

Genesis 18:16

"to send them on their way" or "to say 'Farewell' to them." It was polite to go some distance with guests as they were leaving.

Genesis 18:17

God used this rhetorical question to say that he was going to talk to Abraham about something very important and that it was best for him to do so. Alternate translation: "I should not and will not hide from Abraham what I am about to do" or "I should and will tell Abraham what I am about to do" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion)

Genesis 18:18

The rhetorical question that begins with the words "Should I hide" in verse 17 ends here. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion)

The rhetorical question that begins with the words "Should I hide" in verse 17 ends here. God uses this rhetorical question to say that he was going to talk to Abraham about something very important and that it was best for him to do so. "I should not and will not hide ... since Abraham in him." or "I should and will tell ... since Abraham in him" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion)

"This is because ... him"

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "I will bless all the nations of the earth through Abraham" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

"will be blessed because of Abraham" or "will be blessed because I have blessed Abraham." For translating "in him" see how you translated "through you" in [Genesis 12:3](../12/03.md).

Genesis 18:19

"that he will direct" or "so that he will command"

Yahweh is speaking about himself as if he were another person. Alternate translation: "to obey what I, Yahweh, require ... I, Yahweh, may bring ... I have said" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-123person)

"to obey the commands of Yahweh"

"by doing righteousness and justice." This tells how to keep the way of Yahweh.

"so that Yahweh may bless Abraham just as he said he would." This refers to the covenant promise to bless Abraham and make him a great nation.

Genesis 18:20

This can be reworded so that the abstract noun "outcry" is expressed as the verb "accuse." Alternate translation: "so many people have been accusing the people of Sodom and Gomorrah of doing evil things" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-abstractnouns)

"they have sinned so much"

Genesis 18:21

"I will now go down to Sodom and Gomorrah"

"go down there to find out" or "go down there to decide"

Yahweh speaks as if he knew about this matter because he had heard the cries and accusations coming from the people who had suffered. This can be reworded so that the abstract noun "outcry" is expressed as the verb "accuse." Alternate translation: "as wicked as those who are accusing them say that they are" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-abstractnouns)

"If they are not as wicked as the outcry suggests"

Genesis 18:22

"went out from Abraham's camp"

"Abraham and Yahweh remained together"

Genesis 18:23

"approached Yahweh and said" or "stepped closer to Yahweh and said"

Abraham speaks of destroying people as if it were sweeping dirt with a broom. Alternate translation: "destroy" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

"the righteous people with the wicked people"

Genesis 18:24

Abraham continues talking to Yahweh.

"Suppose there are"

Abraham was hoping that Yahweh would say, "I will not sweep it away." Alternate translation: "I think you would not sweep it away. Instead, you would spare the place for the sake of the fifty righteous that are there" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion)

"destroy it." Abraham speaks of destroying people as if it were sweeping dirt with a broom. Alternate translation: "destroy the people who live there" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Abraham was hoping that God would say "I will spare the place for the sake of the fifty righteous people there."

"let the people live"

"because of"

Genesis 18:25

Here "Far be it from you" is an idiom that means the person should never do something like that. Alternate translation: "I would never want you to do something like that" or "You should not want to do something like that" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

"such a thing as killing" or "such a thing, that is, killing"

This can be stated in active from. Alternate translation: "you should treat the righteous the same way you treat the wicked" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Abraham used this rhetorical question to say what he expected God to do. Alternate translation: "The Judge of all the earth will certainly do what is just!" or "Since you are the Judge of all the earth, you will surely do what is right!" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion)

God is often referred to as a judge because he is the one perfect judge who makes the final decisions about what is right or wrong.

Genesis 18:27

The phrase "Look" here draws attention to the surprising information that follows.

"Pardon me for being so bold as to speak to you" or "Excuse me for daring to speak"

Abraham shows his respect to Yahweh by speaking to Yahweh as if he were speaking to someone else. Alternate translation: "to you, my Lord" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-123person)

This metaphor describes Abraham as a human being, who will die and whose body will turn into to dust and ashes. Alternate translation: "only a mortal man" or "as unimportant as dust and ashes" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Genesis 18:28

"only forty-five righteous people"

"if there are five fewer righteous people"

"I will not destroy Sodom"

Genesis 18:29

"Abraham spoke to Yahweh"

This can be translated in active form. You may have to fill in the ellipsis, "righteous people." Alternate translation: "if you find forty righteous people there" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive and translationAcademy:translate/figs-ellipsis)

"for the sake of the forty" or "if I find forty there." You may have to fill in the ellipsis, "righteous people." Alternate translation: "for the sake of the forty righteous people" or "if I find forty righteous people there" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-ellipsis)

"Yahweh answered"

"I will not destroy the cities if I find forty righteous people there"

Genesis 18:30

This can be translated in active form. You may have to fill in the ellipsis, "righteous people." Alternate translation: "you will find thirty righteous people there" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive and translationAcademy:translate/figs-ellipsis)

Genesis 18:31

The phrase "Look" here draws attention to the surprising information that follows.

"Pardon me for being so bold as to speak to you" or "Excuse me for daring to speak." See how this is translated in [Genesis 18:27](../18/27.md).

This can be translated in active form. You may have to fill in the ellipsis, "righteous people." Alternate translation: "you will find twenty righteous people there" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive and translationAcademy:translate/figs-ellipsis)

"for the sake of the twenty" or "if I find twenty there." You may have to fill in the ellipsis, "righteous people." Alternate translation: "for the sake of the twenty righteous people" or "if I find twenty righteous people there" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-ellipsis)

Genesis 18:32

"Perhaps you will find ten righteous people there"

"Perhaps ten righteous people" or "ten good people"

"And Yahweh answered"

"if I find ten righteous people there"

Genesis 18:33

Here "went on his way" is an idiom that means he left, or he continued his journey. Yahweh appeared to Abraham in human form as a traveler. Alternate translation: "Yahweh departed" or "Yahweh continued on his journey" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

Genesis 19

Genesis 19 General Notes

Special concepts in this chapter

The evil desires of the Sodomites

The men of Sodom desired to forcibly have sexual relations with the angels who came to the city appearing as men. Such action is known as "rape." Their desire was viewed as especially evil because Lot was obligated to protect his guests at all costs, even that of sacrificing his own children for his guests. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/evil)

Hospitality

Hospitality, or being kind to a visitor, was very important in the Ancient Near East. Lot showed his guests loyalty by doing his utmost to protect them from the people of Sodom.

Important figures of speech in this chapter

Contrasts

It is probable that Abraham's faith and actions in chapter 18 are intended to contrast with the actions of the worldly Sodomites. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/faith)

Genesis 19:1

The two men who have gone to Sodom ([Genesis 18:22](../18/22.md)) are really angels.

"the entrance to the city of Sodom." The city had a wall around it, and people had to go through a gate to get into it. This was a very important place in a city. Important people often spent time there.

He put his knees on the ground then touched his forehead and nose to the ground.

Genesis 19:2

This was a term of respect Lot used for the angels.

"Please come and stay in your servant's house"

Lot refers to himself as their servant in order to show them respect. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-123person)

People liked to wash their feet after traveling.

"wake up early"

When the two angels said this, they were referring only to themselves, not to Lot. The two of them planned to spend the night in the square. Some languages would use the exclusive form of "we" here. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-exclusive)

This is a public, outdoor place in the town.

Genesis 19:3

"they turned and went with him"

Genesis 19:4

"before the people in Lot's house lay down to go to sleep"

"the men of the city, that is, the men of Sodom" or just "the men of the city of Sodom"

"Lot's house"

"from the youngest to the oldest." This means "men of all ages" and refers to the men of Sodom who were surrounding Lot's house.

Genesis 19:5

"that went into your house"

These words literally mean "we may know who they are," but the men meant them as a euphemism for "we may have sexual relations with them" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-euphemism)

Genesis 19:6

"behind him" or "after he went through"

Genesis 19:7

"I plead with you, my brothers"

Lot spoke in a friendly way to the men of the city hoping that they would listen to him. Alternate translation: "my friends" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

"do not do something so wicked" or "do not do such a wicked thing"

Genesis 19:8

"Pay attention" or "Look here"

This is a polite way of saying that the daughters had not had sexual relations with any man. You may need to use another euphemism in your language. See how you translated similar words in [Genesis 4:1](../04/01.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-euphemism)

"whatever you desire" or "whatever you think is right"

The two men were guests in Lot's home, so he needed to protect them. The word "roof" is a synecdoche for the whole house and a metaphor for Lot protecting them. Alternate translation: "into my house, and God expects me to protect them" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche and translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Genesis 19:9

"Step aside!" or "Get out of our way!"

"This one came here as an outsider" or "This foreigner came to live here"

"Lot." The men are speaking to each other. If this would be unclear in your language, you may have the men speak to Lot here, as in UST.

The speaker would not expect a foreigner to judge the people of that land. Alternate translation: "but even though he has no good reason to" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

Here "has become our judge" is an idiom that means Lot is acting as if he can tell the men what actions are right or wrong. Alternate translation: "he acts as if he has the authority to tell us what is right and what is wrong" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

"Because you are telling us that what we are doing is wrong, we"

The men are angry that Lot said, "Do not act so wickedly" ([Genesis 19:7](../19/07.md)), so they are threatening to act more wickedly than Lot had feared at first. Alternate translation: "we will act more wickedly with you than we will with them" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

Possible meanings are 1) "They kept coming closer to the man, to Lot, until they were close enough to break down the door" or 2) they physically pushed Lot up against the wall or door of the house and were about to break the door down.

This is two ways of referring to Lot.

Genesis 19:10

"But Lot's two guests" or "But the two angels"

Your language may need to add that the men opened the door first. Alternate translation: 'the men opened the door far enough so they could reach out their hands and pull ... them, and then they shut" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 19:11

The phrase "struck with blindness" is a metaphor; the visitors did not physically hit the men. Alternate translation: "Lot's visitors blinded the men" or "they took away their sight" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

"men of all ages." This merism emphasizes that the visitors blinded all the men. This could indicate social standing rather than age. Alternate translation: "both small and great" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-merism)

Genesis 19:12

"Then the two men said" or "Then the angels said"

"Are there any other members of your family in the city?" or "Do you have any other family members in this place?"

"any other members of your family living in this city"

Genesis 19:13

The word "we" here is exclusive. Only the two angels would destroy the city; Lot would not destroy it. If your language has an exclusive form of "we," use it here. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-exclusive)

This can be reworded so that the abstract noun "accusations" is expressed as a verb. See how similar words are translated in [Genesis 18:20](../18/20.md). Alternate translation: "so many people have been telling Yahweh that the people of this city are doing evil things" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-abstractnouns)

Genesis 19:14

"So Lot left the house"

The phrase "the men who had promised to marry his daughters" explains what "sons-in-law" means here. Alternate translation: "the men who were going to marry his daughters" or "his daughters' fiancés" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-parallelism)

Genesis 19:15

"Just before the sun came up"

"Go now"

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "so Yahweh does not also destroy you when he punishes the people of this city" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

God destroying the people of the city is spoken of as if a person were sweeping away dust. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Here "city" stands for the people. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Genesis 19:16

"But Lot hesitated" or "But Lot did not start to leave"

"So the two men grabbed" or "So the angels grabbed"

"had compassion on Lot." Yahweh is described as being "merciful" because he was sparing the lives of Lot and his family instead of destroying them when he destroyed the people of Sodom for the wrong they had done.

Genesis 19:17

"When the two men had brought Lot's family out"

This is a way of telling them to run so that they do not die. Alternate translation: "Run away and save your lives!" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

The phrase "at the city" is understood. Alternate translation: "Do not look back at the city" or "Do not look back at Sodom" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-ellipsis)

This means the plain of the Jordan River. This refers to the general region of the Jordan River.

It is understood that they would swept away with the people of the city. This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "or else God will destroy you along with the people of the city" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-ellipsis and translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

God destroying the people of the city is spoken of as if a person were sweeping away dust. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Genesis 19:19

The phrase "found favor" is an idiom which means to be approved of by someone. Here "eyes" are a metonym for sight, and sight is a metaphor representing his evaluation. Alternate translation: "You have been pleased with me" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom and translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy and translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Lot was showing respect by referring to himself as "your servant." Alternate translation: "I, your servant, have" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-123person)

The abstract noun "kindness" can be stated as "kind." Alternate translation: "you have been very kind to me by saving my life" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-abstractnouns)

Being unable to get far enough away from Sodom when God destroys the city is spoken of as if "disaster" is a person that will chase and catch up with Lot. Alternate translation: "My family and I will certainly die when God destroys the people of Sodom, because the mountains are too far away for us to get there safely" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-personification)

It is implied that Lot's family would die along with him. Alternate translation: "our lives ... we cannot escape ... overtake us, and we will die" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 19:20

Lot used this rhetorical question to get the angels to notice that the city really is a small one. Alternate translation: "let me escape there. You can see how small it is. If you let us go there we will live" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion)

Lot's full request can be made explicit. Alternate translation: "instead of destroying that city, let me escape there" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

It is implied that the lives of Lot's family will be saved along with his. This can also be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "so that we will live" or "so that we will survive" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit and translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Genesis 19:21

"I will do what you have asked"

Genesis 19:22

This can be made more explicit. Alternate translation: "cannot destroy the other cities" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Translators may add a footnote that says "The name Zoar sounds like the Hebrew word that means 'little.' Lot called this town 'little' in Genesis 19:20."

Genesis 19:23

"The sun had risen over the earth." The phrase "upon the earth" can be left implicit as it is in the UST where it is not translated. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

It is implied that Lot's family is with him. Alternate translation: "when Lot and his family arrived at Zoar" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 19:24

The phrase "from Yahweh" stands for God's power to cause the sulfur and fire to fall on the city. Alternate translation: "Yahweh caused sulfur and fire to fall from the sky onto Sodom and Gomorrah" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

These two words are used together to describe one object. Alternate translation: "burning sulfur" or "fiery rain" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-hendiadys)

Genesis 19:25

This refers primarily to Sodom and Gomorrah, but also to three other towns.

"the people who lived in the cities"

Genesis 19:26

"she became like a statue of salt" or "her body became like a tall stone of salt." Because she disobeyed the angel who told them not to look back at the city, God caused her to become something like a statue made out of rock salt.

Genesis 19:28

The word "behold" draws attention to the surprising information that follows.

This shows that it was a very large amount of smoke. Alternate translation: "like the smoke from a very large fire" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-simile)

Genesis 19:29

Verse 29 is a summary of this chapter.

This tells why God rescued Lot. To "call to mind" is a way of saying "remember." This does not imply that God forgot about Abraham. It means he considered Abraham and had mercy on him. Alternate translation: "God thought about Abraham and had mercy on him" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

"away from the destruction" or "away from danger"

Genesis 19:30

The phrase "went up from" is used because Lot went to a higher elevation in the mountains.

Genesis 19:31

Here "firstborn" and "younger" are nominal adjectives that refer to Lot's two daughters according to their birth order. Alternate translation: "Lot's first daughter ... Lot's last daughter" or "The older daughter ... the younger daughter" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-nominaladj)

These words are a euphemism for sexual relations. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-euphemism)

Here "the world" stands for the people. Alternate translation: "as people everywhere do" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Genesis 19:32

It can be made explicit that their goal was to get him drunk. Alternate translation: "drink wine until he gets drunk" or "get drunk with wine" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

To "lie with" someone is a euphemism for having sexual relations with that person. Alternate translation: "we will have sexual relations with him" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-euphemism)

This speaks about giving Lot descendants as if his family were a line that they are making longer. Alternate translation: "so that we can bear children who will be our father's descendants" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Genesis 19:33

This is probably a euphemism for sexual activity. Alternate translation:"had sexual relations with her father" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-euphemism)

Possible meanings are 1) these words are literal, a complement to "when she got up," or 2) they are a euphemism for sexual relations. Alternate translation: "when she had sexual relations with him" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-euphemism)

Genesis 19:34

See how you translated these phrases in [Genesis 19:32](./32.md).

It can be made explicit that their goal was to get him drunk. Alternate translation: "drink wine until he gets drunk" or "get drunk with wine" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

This speaks about giving Lot descendants as if his family were a line that they are making longer. Alternate translation: "so that we can bear children who will be our father's descendants" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Genesis 19:35

See how you translated similar phrases in [Genesis 19:33](./33.md).

This is probably a euphemism for sexual activity. Alternate translation:"had sexual relations with him" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-euphemism)

Possible meanings are 1) these words are literal, a complement to "when she got up," or 2) they are a euphemism for sexual relations. See how these words are translated in [Genesis 19:33](../19/33.md). Alternate translation: "when she had sexual relations with him" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-euphemism)

Genesis 19:36

"became pregnant by their father" or "conceived children with their father"

Genesis 19:37

"He is"

"the Moab people who are now living"

The word "today" refers to the time when the author of Genesis was living. The author was born and wrote this many years after Lot's family lived and died.

Genesis 19:38

This is a male name. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

"the descendants of Ammon" or "the Ammon people"

Genesis 20

Genesis 20 General Notes

Special concepts in this chapter

"She is my sister"

Abraham was afraid the people of Gerar would see him as a foreigner and upon seeing his beautiful wife, they would try to kill him. This would free Sarah to marry someone else. Apparently, it would have been easy for them to kill a foreigner without punishment. If she was Abraham's sister, they would have shown favor to him. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit and translationWords:bible/kt/favor)

Other possible translation difficulties in this chapter

Irony

Abraham believed that the people of Gerar did not fear Yahweh, but when confronted by Yahweh, the king showed that he feared Yahweh. Instead, it was Abraham who did not show any fear of Yahweh when he sinned. This is irony. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/fear and translationWords:bible/kt/sin)

Genesis 20:1

This is a desert region on the eastern border of Egypt. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 20:2

"made his men go get Sarah and bring her to him"

Genesis 20:3

"God appeared to Abimelech"

"pay attention, because what I am about to say is both true and important: "

This is a strong way of saying the king will die. Alternate translation: "you will certainly die soon" or "I will kill you" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

"a married woman"

Genesis 20:4

This word is used here to mark a change from the story to information about Abimelech. (See: translationAcademy:translate/writing-background)

This is a polite way of saying he did not have sex with her. Alternate translation: "Abimelech had not slept with Sarah" or "Abimelech had not touched Sarah" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-euphemism)

Here "nation" stands for the people. Abimelech is worried that God will punish not only him, but his people also. Alternate translation: "even a people who are innocent" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Genesis 20:5

This has quotations within a quotation. They can be stated as indirect quotations. Alternate translation: "Did he himself not tell me that she is his sister? Even she herself told me that he is her brother." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotesinquotes and translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotations)

Abimelech used this rhetorical question to remind God of something God already knew. This can be translated as a statement. Alternate translation: "Abraham himself told me, 'She is my sister.'" or "Abraham said that she is his sister." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion)

The words "he himself" and "she herself" are used for emphasis to bring attention to Abraham and Sarah and to blame them for what happened. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rpronouns)

Here "heart" stands for his thoughts or intentions. Also "hands" stands for his actions. Alternate translation: "I have done this with good intentions and actions" or "I have done this with no evil thoughts or actions" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Genesis 20:6

"God said to Abimelech"

Here "heart" stands for his thoughts or intentions. Alternate translation: "you did this with good intentions" or "you did this without evil intentions" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

This is a euphemism for having sex with Sarah. Alternate translation: "to sleep with her" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-euphemism)

Genesis 20:7

"Abraham's wife"

"I will let you live"

"all of your people"

Genesis 20:8

"He told them everything that God had told him"

Genesis 20:9

Abimelech used this rhetorical question to accuse Abraham. Alternate translation: "You have done something bad to us!" or "Look what you have done to us!" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion)

The word "us" here is exclusive and does not include Abraham and Sarah. If your language uses an exclusive form of "we" or "us," use it here. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-exclusive)

Abimelech used this rhetorical question to remind Abraham that he had not sinned against Abraham. Alternate translation: "I have done nothing against you to cause you to bring ... sin." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion)

To cause someone to be guilty of sinning is spoken of as if "sin" was a thing that could be placed on a person. Alternate translation: "that you should make me and my kingdom guilty of such a terrible sin" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Here "kingdom" stands for the people. Alternate translation: "on the people of my kingdom" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

"You should not have done this to me"

Genesis 20:10

"What caused you to do this?" or "Why did you do this?" What Abraham did can be stated explicitly. Alternate translation: "Why did you tell me that Sarah is your sister?" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 20:11

This is a quotation within a quotation. It can be stated as an indirect quotation. Alternate translation: "Because I thought that since no one here fears God, someone may kill me so they can take my wife." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotesinquotes and translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotations)

Here "place" refers to the people. Alternate translation: "no one here in Gerar fears God" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

This means to deeply respect God and show that respect by obeying him.

Genesis 20:12

"Also, it is true that Sarah is my sister" or "Also, Sarah really is my sister"

"we have the same father, but we have different mothers"

Genesis 20:13

Verse 13 is a continuation of Abraham's answer to Abimelech.

Here "house" stands for Abraham's family. Alternate translation: "my father and the rest of my family" or "my father's household" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

This has quotations within quotations. They can be stated as indirect quotations. Alternate translation: "I said to Sarah that I wanted her to be faithful to me by telling people everywhere we go that I am her brother" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotesinquotes and translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotations)

Genesis 20:14

"Abimelech brought some"

Genesis 20:15

"Abimelech said to Abraham"

"Pay attention, because what I am about to say is both true and important"

This is a way of saying "I make all of my land available to you" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

"Live wherever you want"

Genesis 20:16

"1,000" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

Giving money to prove to others that Sarah is innocent is spoken of as if he is placing a cover over an offense so no one can see it. Alternate translation: "I am giving this to him, so that those who are with you will know that you have done nothing wrong" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

The eyes represent seeing, and seeing represents thoughts or judgment. Alternate translation: "in the opinion" or "in the judgement" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

The passive phrase "made right" can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "everyone will know that you are innocent" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Genesis 20:18

"totally unable to have children"

The full meaning can be stated explicitly. Alternate translation: "because Abimelech had taken Abraham's wife Sarah" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 21

Genesis 21 General Notes

Special concepts in this chapter

Sarah's anger

After Sarah was able to have her own child, and he survived infancy, she began to get angry with Abraham's other son, Ishmael. He would have been a constant reminder of her own sin. God blessed Ishmael, but he was not able to inherit the promises given to Abraham. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/sin, translationWords:bible/kt/inherit and translationWords:bible/kt/promise and translationWords:bible/kt/bless)

Abandoning Ishmael

According to the law at this time, Hagar was able to gain her freedom from slavery by abandoning any claim to receive an inheritance. This is why Hagar would have abandoned her son under the tree. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Treaty

The Gentile king, Abimelech, made a covenant or treaty with Abraham. It is possible that he did this because he recognized the power of Abraham's God, but his exact reasons are unknown. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/covenant)

Genesis 21:1

Here the phrase "paid attention to" refers to Yahweh helping Sarah have a baby. Alternate translation: "Yahweh helped Sarah" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 21:2

"gave birth to Abraham's son"

"when Abraham was very old"

"at the exact time that God had told him it would happen"

Genesis 21:3

"Abraham named his newborn son, the one Sarah gave birth to, Isaac" or "Abraham named their newborn son Isaac"

Genesis 21:4

"When his son Isaac was eight days old, Abraham circumcised him"

"8 days" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

"had commanded Abraham to do"

Genesis 21:5

"100" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

Genesis 21:6

Sarah was laughing because she was surprised and happy. This can be made explicit. Alternate translation: "God has caused me to laugh joyfully" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

What people would hear can be stated explicitly. Alternate translation: "everyone who hears about what God has done for me" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 21:7

This rhetorical question can be translated as a statement. Alternate translation: "No one would have ever said to Abraham that Sarah will nurse children" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion)

This is a polite way of referring to breast-feeding babies. Alternate translation: "feed a baby her own milk" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-euphemism)

Genesis 21:8

"Wean" here is a polite way of saying the child was finished with breast feeding. Alternate translation: "Isaac grew, and when he no longer needed his mother's milk, Abraham had a large feast" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-euphemism)

Genesis 21:9

The name of Hagar's son can be stated explicitly. Alternate translation: "Ishmael, the son of Hagar the Egyptian and Abraham" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

It can be stated explicitly that he was jeering or laughing at Isaac. Alternate translation: "laughing at Isaac" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 21:10

"Sarah said to Abraham"

"send away" or "get rid of"

This refers to Hagar and Ishmael. Sarah probably did not refer to them by name because she was angry with them.

"with my son Isaac"

Genesis 21:11

"Abraham was very unhappy about what Sarah said"

"because it was about his son." It is implied that this means his son, Ishmael. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 21:12

"Do not be upset about the boy and your handmaid"

"Do everything that Sarah says to you about them"

The phrase "will be named" means those born through Isaac are the ones God considers to be the descendants that he promised Abraham. This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "Isaac is the one who will be the forefather of the descendants I promised to give you" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Genesis 21:13

The word "nation" means God will give him many descendants so that they become a great nation of people. Alternate translation: "I will make the servant woman's son also become the father of a great nation" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Genesis 21:14

Possible meanings are 1) this refers to food in general or 2) this refers to bread specifically. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

"a bag of water." The water container was made out of animal skin.

Genesis 21:15

"When the water bag was empty" or "When they had drank all of the water"

Genesis 21:16

This refers to the distance that a person could shoot an arrow with a bow. This is about 100 meters.

The abstract noun "death" can be stated as "die." Alternate translation: "I do not want to watch the boy die" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-abstractnouns)

Here "voice" stands for the sound of her crying. To "life up her voice" means to cry loudly. Alternate translation: "she cried out loudly and wept" or "she wept loudly" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy and translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

Genesis 21:17

"the boy's voice." Here "voice" stands for the sound of the boy crying or speaking. Alternate translation: "the sound of Ishmael" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

"a messenger from God" or "God's messenger"

Here "heaven" means the place where God lives.

"What is wrong" or "Why are you crying"

Here "voice" stands for the sound of the boy crying or speaking. Alternate translation: "the sound of the boy lying over there" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Genesis 21:18

"help the boy stand up"

To make Ishmael into a great nation means God will give him many descendants who will become a great nation. Alternate translation: "I will make his descendants become a great nation" or "I will make him become the ancestor of a great nation" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Genesis 21:19

God making Hagar aware of the well is spoken of as if he literally opened her eyes. Alternate translation: "God caused Hagar to see" or "God showed her" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

"the container made of skin" or "the bag"

"the boy" or "Ishmael"

Genesis 21:20

Here the phrase "was with" is an idiom that means God helped or blessed the boy. Alternate translation: "God guided the boy" or "God blessed the boy" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

"became very skilled at using a bow and arrows"

Genesis 21:21

"found a wife"

Genesis 21:22

This phrase marks the beginning of a new part of the story. If your language has a way for doing this, you could consider using it here. (See: translationAcademy:translate/writing-newevent)

This is the name of a man. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

"commander of his army"

The word "his" refers to Abimelech.

Here the phrase "is with you" is an idiom that means God helps or blesses Abraham. Alternate translation: "God blesses everything you do" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

Genesis 21:23

The word "Now" does not mean "at this moment," but is used to draw attention to the important point that follows. Alternate translation: "Therefore" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

This is an idiom meaning to make a solemn oath witnessed by a higher authority, in this instance, God. Alternate translation: "promise me with God as your witness" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

"that you will not lie to me"

This can be stated in positive form. Alternate translation: "will deal honestly with me and my descendants" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-doublenegatives)

The two men had made a covenant with each other. The abstract noun "faithfulness" can be stated as "faithful" or "loyal." Alternate translation: "Be as faithful to me and to the land as I have been to you" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-abstractnouns)

Here "land" stands for the people. Alternate translation: "to the people of the land" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Genesis 21:24

This can be stated with the understood information. Alternate translation: "I swear to be as faithful to you and your people as you have been to me" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-ellipsis)

Genesis 21:25

Possible meanings are 1) Abraham was complaining about what happened or 2) "Abraham also rebuked Abimelech"

"because Abimelech's servants had taken one of Abraham's wells"

"taken from Abraham" or "had taken control of"

Genesis 21:26

"This is the first time I have heard about it"

Genesis 21:27

This is a sign of friendship and that Abraham agrees to make covenant with Abimelech. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-symaction)

Genesis 21:28

"Abraham separated seven female lambs from the flock"

Genesis 21:29

"Why have you separated these seven lambs from the flock?"

Genesis 21:30

"you will take"

Here "hand" stands for Abraham. Alternate translation: "from me" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

The word "it" refers to the gift of seven lambs.

The abstract noun "witness" can be stated as "to prove." Alternate translation: "to prove to everyone" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-abstractnouns)

Genesis 21:31

"Abraham called that place"

Translators may add a footnote saying "Beersheba can mean either "well of the oath" or "well of seven."

"Abraham and Abimelech"

Genesis 21:32

This is the name of a man. See how you translated this name in [Genesis 21:22](../21/22.md).

Genesis 21:33

This is an evergreen tree that can grow in the desert. It can be stated more generally. Alternate translation: "a tree" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-unknown)

"the God who lives forever"

Genesis 21:34

"for a long time"

Genesis 22

Genesis 22 General Notes

Special concepts in this chapter

Sacrificing his son

Although Isaac was not Abraham's only son, he was the son who was to inherit Abraham's promised blessings. It is possible this parallels God's actual sacrifice of his son, Jesus, for the sins of man. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/inherit and translationWords:bible/kt/promise and translationWords:bible/kt/sin)

Covenant affirmation

After important events, it is common for Scripture to affirm the tenants of a covenant. This serves as a reminder of the covenant and affirms it. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/covenant)

Other possible translation difficulties in this chapter

God tests Abraham

Extra care should be taken when translating "testing." It is best to avoid using the same word used for "tempting" even though they overlap in meaning. This is because Scripture also says God does not tempt anyone. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/test and translationWords:bible/kt/tempt and [James 2:13](../../jas/02/13.md))

Genesis 22:1

This phrase is used here to mark the beginning of a new part of the story. If your language has a way for doing this, you could consider using it here. (See: translationAcademy:translate/writing-newevent)

This phrase refers to the events in chapter 21.

It is implied that God tests Abraham to learn if Abraham will be faithful to him. The full meaning of this statement can be made explicit. Alternate translation: God tested Abraham's faithfulness" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

"Yes, I am listening" or "Yes, what is it?"

Genesis 22:2

It is implied that God knows that Abraham has another son, Ishmael. This emphasizes that Isaac is the son that God promised to give Abraham. The full meaning of this statement can be made explicit. Alternate translation: "your only son whom I have promised" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

This emphasizes Abraham's love for his son, Isaac.

"the land called Moriah" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 22:3

"loaded his donkey" or "put on his donkey what he needed for the journey"

"servants"

"started his journey" or "started traveling"

Genesis 22:4

The word "third" is the ordinal number for three. Alternate translation: "After traveling for three days" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-ordinal)

"saw far away the place that God had spoken of"

Genesis 22:5

"servants"

The word "we" refers only to Abraham and Isaac, but not to the young men. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-exclusive)

"return to you"

Genesis 22:6

"had Isaac, his son, carry it"

Here "his own hand" emphasizes that Abraham himself carried these things. Alternate translation: "Abraham himself carried" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

Here "fire" stands for a pan containing burning coals or a torch or lamp. Alternate translation: "something for starting a fire" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

"they left together" or "the two of them went together"

Genesis 22:7

This is a loving way for a son to speak to his father.

"Yes, I am listening" or "Yes, what is it?" See how you translated this in [Genesis 22:1](../22/01.md).

This is a loving way for a father to speak to his son.

Here "fire" stands for a pan containing burning coals or a torch or lamp. See how you translated this in [Genesis 22:6](../22/06.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

"the lamb that you will give as a burnt offering"

Genesis 22:8

Here "himself" emphasizes that it is God who will provide the lamb. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rpronouns)

"will give us"

Genesis 22:9

"When Abraham and Isaac arrived at the place"

"he tied up"

"on top of the wood that was on the altar"

Genesis 22:10

"picked up the knife"

Genesis 22:11

Possible meanings are 1) Yahweh made himself look like an angel or 2) this was one of Yahweh's angels or 3) this was a special messenger from God (some scholars think it was Jesus). Since the phrase is not well understood, it is best to simply translate it as "the angel of Yahweh" using the normal word that you use for "angel." See the note about this phrase in [Genesis 16:7](../16/07.md).

This refers to the place where God lives.

"Yes, I am listening" or "Yes, what is it?" See how you translated this in [Genesis 22:1](../22/01.md).

Genesis 22:12

The phrase "Do no lay your hand upon" is a way of saying "do not harm." God said basically the same thing twice to emphasize that Abraham should not hurt Isaac. Alternate translation: "Do not hurt the boy in any way" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom and translationAcademy:translate/figs-parallelism)

The words "I" and "me" refer to Yahweh. When translating what is in the quote, do it as the angel of Yahweh did and use the words "I" and "me" when referring to Yahweh.

This refers to deeply respecting God and showing that respect by obeying him.

"because I see that"

"you have not held back your son ... from me." This can be stated in positive form. Alternate translation: "you were willing to offer your son ... to me" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-doublenegatives)

It is implied that God knows that Abraham has another son, Ishmael. This emphasizes that Isaac is the son that God promised to give Abraham. See how you translated a similar phrase in [Genesis 22:2](../22/02.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 22:13

The word "behold" here alerts us to pay attention to the surprising information that follows.

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "was a ram whose horns were stuck in the bushes" or "was a ram stuck in the bushes" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

"Abraham went over to the ram and took it"

Genesis 22:14

Use the same word for "provide" as you used in [Genesis 22:8](../22/08.md).

"even now." This means even to the time that the author was writing this book.

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "he will provide" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Genesis 22:15

Possible meanings are 1) Yahweh made himself look like an angel or 2) this was one of Yahweh's angels or 3) this was a special messenger from God (some scholars think it was Jesus). Since the phrase is not well understood, it is best to simply translate it as "The angel of Yahweh" using the normal word that you use for "angel." See the note about this phrase in [Genesis 16:7](../16/07.md).

The word "second" is the ordinal number for two. Alternate translation: "again" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-ordinal)

Here the word "heaven" refers to the place where God lives.

Genesis 22:16

"spoke this message from Yahweh" or "declared these words of Yahweh." This is a formal way of saying that the words that follow come directly from Yahweh.

"I have promised and I am my witness." To swear means to use the name of something or someone as the basis or power on which the oath is made. There is nothing more powerful for Yahweh to swear by than himself.

"you obeyed me"

"have not kept back your son." This can be stated in positive form. Alternate translation: "were willing to offer your son to me" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-doublenegatives)

It is implied that God knows that Abraham has another son, Ishmael. This emphasizes that Isaac is the son that God promised to give Abraham. See how you translated a similar phrase in [Genesis 22:2](../22/02.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 22:17

"certainly bless"

"I will cause your descendants to increase again and again" or "I will cause your descendants to be very many"

God compared Abraham's descendants to the stars and the sand. Just as people cannot count the huge number of stars or the grains of sand, so there would be so many of Abraham's descendants that people would not be able to count them. Alternate translation: "beyond what you can count" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-simile)

Here the word "heavens" refers to everything we see above the earth, including the sun, moon, and stars.

Here "gate" represents the whole city. To "possess the gate of their enemies" means destroying their enemies. Alternate translation: "will completely triumph over their enemies" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche and translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Genesis 22:18

The angel of Yahweh continues speaking to Abraham.

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "I, the Lord, will bless all the people living everywhere" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Here "nations" stands for the people of the nations. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Here "voice" stands for what God said. Alternate translation: "you have obeyed what I said" or "you have obeyed me" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Genesis 22:19

Only Abraham was named because he was the father, but it was implied that his son went with him. The full meaning of this statement can be made explicit. Alternate translation: "Abraham and his son went back" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

"servants"

"they left that place"

Only Abraham was mentioned because he was the leader of his family and servants, but it was implied that they were with him. The full meaning of this statement can be made explicit. Alternate translation: "Abraham and his people stayed in Beersheba" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 22:20

"After these events." The phrase "these things" refers to the events of Genesis 22:1-19. (See: translationAcademy:translate/writing-newevent)

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "someone told Abraham" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

"Milkah has also borne children"

This is the name of a woman. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 22:21

"The name of his firstborn was Uz, and the names of the rest of his children were Buz his brother"

These are all names of men. Translate this so that it is clear that all of these except Aram are the sons of Nahor and Milkah. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 22:22

These are all names of men. Translate this so that it is clear that all of these are the sons of Nahor and Milkah. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 22:23

"Later Bethel became the father of Rebekah"

"These were the eight children of Milkah and Nahor, Abraham's brother." This refers to the children that were listed in [Genesis 22:21-22](./21.md).

Genesis 22:24

"Nahor's concubine"

This is the name of a woman. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

"also gave birth to"

These are all names of men. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 23

Genesis 23 General Notes

Special concepts in this chapter

Abraham's character

Abraham's interaction with the people show that he was greatly respected. This would have been unusual for a foreigner and indicates that Abraham was a man of great character. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Burial

Burial was a common practice when Abraham lived, but only the wealthy were able to bury their dead relatives in this way.

Genesis 23:1

"Sarah lived 127 years" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

Some translations do not include this sentence. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-doublet)

Genesis 23:2

This is the name of a city. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

"Abraham was very sad and cried because Sarah died"

Genesis 23:3

"got up and left his wife's body"

Here "sons" stands for those who descended from Heth. Alternate translation: "the descendants of Heth" or "the Hittites" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 23:4

This idea may be expressed in terms of location. "in your country" or "here"

"Sell me some land" or "Allow me to buy a piece of land"

The nominal adjective "dead" can be stated as an adjective or a verb. Alternate translation: "my dead wife" or "my wife who has died" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-nominaladj)

Genesis 23:5

Here "sons" stands for those who descended from Heth. See how you translated this in [Genesis 23:3](../23/03.md). Alternate translation: "The descendants of Heth" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 23:6

This phrase is used to show respect to Abraham.

This is an idiom. This probably means "a powerful man" or "a mighty leader." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

The nominal adjective "dead" can be stated as a verb or simply as "wife." Alternate translation: "your wife who has died" or "your wife" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-nominaladj)

"the best of our burial places"

"withhold his burial place from you" or "refuse to give to you his tomb"

Genesis 23:7

This means to bend over or kneel down very low to humbly express respect and honor toward someone. (See: translationAcademy:translate/writing-symlanguage)

"to the sons of Heth who lived in the area"

Here "sons" stands for those who descended from Heth. See how you translated this in [Genesis 23:3](../23/03.md). Alternate translation: "the descendants of Heth" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 23:8

The nominal adjective "dead" can be stated as a verb or simply as "wife." Alternate translation: "my wife who has died" or "my wife" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-nominaladj)

These are names of men. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 23:9

"his cave that is at the end of his field in Machpelah"

"the cave in Machpela." Machpela was the name of an area or region. Ephron owned a field in Machpela and the cave that was in the field. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

This tells something about the cave. Ephron owned the cave. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-distinguish)

This also tells something about the cave. The cave was at the end of Ephron's field. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-distinguish)

"sell it to me in front of you all" or "sell it to me in your presence"

"as a piece of land that I may own and use"

Genesis 23:10

Here "Now" is used here to mark a change from the story to background information about Ephron. (See: translationAcademy:translate/writing-background)

This is the name of a man. See how you translated this in [Genesis 23:8](../23/08.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Here "sons" stands for those who descended from Heth. See how you translated this in [Genesis 23:3](../23/03.md). Alternate translation: "the descendants of Heth" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

The abstract noun "the hearing" can be stated as "hear" or "listening." Alternate translation: "so that all the sons of Heth could hear him" or "while all the sons of Heth were listening" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-abstractnouns)

This tells which sons of Heth were listening. Alternate translation: "all those who had gathered at the gate of his city" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-distinguish)

The city gate was where the leaders of the city would meet to make important decisions.

"the city where he lived." This phrase shows that Ephron belonged to that city. It does not mean that he owned it.

Genesis 23:11

This phrase is used to show respect to Abraham.

Here "presence" stands for the people serving as witnesses. Alternate translation: "with my fellow countrymen as my witnesses" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

This means "my fellow countrymen" or "my fellow Hittites"

This phrase shows that Ephron was part of that group of people. It does not mean that he was their leader.

"I give it to you. Bury your dead"

The nominal adjective "dead" can be stated as a verb or simply as "wife." Alternate translation: "your wife who has died" or "your wife" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-nominaladj)

Genesis 23:12

This means to bend over or kneel down very low to humbly express respect and honor toward someone. (See: translationAcademy:translate/writing-symlanguage)

"people who lived in that area"

Genesis 23:13

The abstract noun "the hearing" can be stated as "hear" or "listening" Alternate translation: "so that the people who lived in the area could hear" or "while the people who lived in the area were listening" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-abstractnouns)

The word "but" shows a contrast. Ephron wanted to give the field to Abraham; Abraham wanted to pay for it. Alternate translation: "No, but if you are willing" or "No, but if you agree with this"

"I will give you money for the field"

The nominal adjective "dead" can be stated as a verb or simply as "wife." Alternate translation: "my wife who has died" or "my wife" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-nominaladj)

Genesis 23:14

This is the name of a man. See how you translated this in [Genesis 23:8](../23/08.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 23:15

"Hear me, my master" or "Listen to me, kind sir"

This phrase is used to show respect to Abraham.

Ephron meant that since he and Abraham were both so wealthy, 400 pieces of silver was a small amount. This rhetorical question can be translated as a statement. Alternate translation: "The piece of land is worth only four hundred shekels of silver. For you and me, that is nothing." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion)

This is about 4.5 kilograms of silver. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-bweight)

"400" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

The nominal adjective "dead" can be stated as a verb or simply as "wife." Alternate translation: "Go bury your wife who has died" or "Go bury your wife" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-nominaladj)

Genesis 23:16

"Abraham weighed the silver and gave Ephron the amount" or "Abraham counted out to Ephron the amount of silver"

"the amount of silver that Ephron had said"

The abstract noun "the hearing" can be stated as "hear" or "listening." Alternate translation: "so that all the sons of Heth could hear him" or "while all the sons of Heth were listening" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-abstractnouns)

Here "sons" stands for those who descended from Heth. See how you translated this in [Genesis 23:3](../23/03.md). Alternate translation: "the descendants of Heth" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

"using the standard measurement of weight that merchants used." This can be stated as a new sentence. Alternate translation: "He weighed the silver the same way that the merchants used to weigh it"

Genesis 23:17

Machpela was the name of an area or region. See how you translated this in [Genesis 23:9](../23/09.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

This was another name for the city of Hebron. It may have been named after Mamre, the friend of Abraham who lived there. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

This phrase explains what the author meant when he wrote "the field of Ephron." It was not only the field, but also the cave and trees in the field.

"became property that belonged"

Genesis 23:18

These words complete the idea that begins with the word "passed" in verse 17. "became Abraham's possession when he purchased it" or "belonged to Abraham after he bought it"

Here "presence" stands for the people serving as witnesses. Alternate translation: "with the people of Heth watching as witnesses" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Here "sons" stands for those who descended from Heth. See how you translated this in [Genesis 23:3](../23/03.md). Alternate translation: "the descendants of Heth" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

This tells which sons of Heth saw Abraham buy the property. See how you translated this in [Genesis 23:10](../23/10.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-distinguish)

The city gate was where the leaders of the city would meet to make important decisions.

"the city where he lived." This phrase shows that Ephron belonged to that city. It does not mean that he owned it.

Genesis 23:19

"After he bought the field"

"the cave in the field"

"the field in Machpelah"

Possible meanings are 1) Mamre was another name for Hebron or 2) Hebron was formerly called Mamre or 3) Mamre was very near the larger city of Hebron, so people usually called it Hebron.

Genesis 23:20

"became Abraham's property for a burial ground when he bought it from the sons of Heth"

Here "sons" stands for those who descended from Heth. See how you translated this in [Genesis 23:3](../23/03.md). Alternate translation: "the descendants of Heth" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 24

Genesis 24 General Notes

Structure and formatting

Some translations set each line of poetry farther to the right than the rest of the text to make it easier to read. The ULT does this with the poetry in 24:60.

Special concepts in this chapter

Intermarriage

Abraham would not allow his son to marry anyone from the people of Canaan. This is because it would cause his son to worship other gods. Intermarriage and worshiping false gods are things that frequently caused Abraham's descendants to struggle. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/falsegod)

Abraham's wealth

There are many instances recorded in this chapter which highlight Abraham's significant wealth. He owned more than 10 camels and had large amounts of gold.

Other possible translation difficulties in this chapter

"Put your hand under my thigh"

Many scholars believe this is a euphemism. Putting one's hand on a man's genitals was a way to make an important oath. It represented power and progeny. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-euphemism)

Genesis 24:1

This word is used here to mark a break in the main story line. Here the author starts to tell a new part of the story.

Genesis 24:2

Abraham was about to ask the servant to swear to do something. Putting his hand under Abraham's thigh would show that he would certainly do what he would swear to do. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-symaction)

Genesis 24:3

This can be expressed as a command. Alternate translation: "swear" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-imperative)

The term "swear by" means to use the name of something or someone as the basis or power on which the oath is made. "promise me with Yahweh as your witness"

"the God of heaven and earth." The words "heaven" and "earth" are used together to mean every thing that God created. Alternate translation: "the God of everything in heaven and earth" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-merism)

This refers to the place where God lives.

"from the Canaanite women" or "from the Canaanites." This refers to Canaanite females.

"among whom I live." Here, "I" stands for Abraham and all of his family and servants. Alternate translation: "among whom we live" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

Genesis 24:4

This can be stated as a command. Alternate translation: "Swear that you will go" or "But go" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-imperative)

"my family"

Genesis 24:5

"What should I do if"

"will not follow me" or "refuses to come back with me"

"Should I take you son to live in the land from which you came"

Genesis 24:6

The phrase "Make sure" emphasizes the command that follows. "Be careful not to take my son back there" or "You definitely must not take my son there"

Genesis 24:7

Here "house" stands for the people in his family. Alternate translation: "who took me from my father and the rest of my family" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

"swore an oath to me"

This is a quotation within a quotation. It can be stated as an indirect quotation. Alternate translation: "saying that he would give this land to my offspring" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotesinquotes and translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotations)

The words "he" and "his" refer to Yahweh.

Genesis 24:8

Verse 8 is a continuation of the instructions Abraham gave his servant.

"But if the woman refuses to come with you." Abraham was answering the servant's question from [Genesis 24:5](../24/05.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-hypo)

"you will be released from the oath you made to me." Not having to fulfill an oath is spoken of as if the person is free from an object to which he was bound. Alternate translation: "you will not have to do what you swore to me that you would do" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Genesis 24:9

This was to show that he would certainly do what he was swearing to do. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-symaction)

"made an oath to him"

"concerning Abraham's request" or "that he would do what Abraham said"

Genesis 24:10

The sentence starting with "He also took" gives additional information about what the servant took with him on the journey. He gathered them before he departed.

This means he also took many good things that his master wanted to give to the woman's family.

"set out and went" or "he left and went"

Possible meanings are 1) the city where Nahor lived" or 2) "the city called Nahor." If you can translate it without choosing a meaning, do so. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 24:11

Camels are tall animals with long legs. He made them bend their legs and lower their bodies to the ground. "He made the camels lie down"

"water well" or "well"

"get water"

Genesis 24:12

"Then the servant said"

You can state this with the connecting word "by." This makes clear how the servant wants God to show covenant faithfulness. Alternate translation: "Show covenant faithfulness to my master Abraham by granting me success today" (See: translationAcademy:translate/writing-connectingwords)

"give me success." The servant wanted to find a good wife for Abraham's son. The abstract noun "success" can be stated as a verb. Alternate translation: "help me to succeed" or "make me able to do what I have come here to do" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-abstractnouns)

The abstract noun "faithfulness" can be stated as "faithful." Alternate translation: "be faithful to the covenant you have with my master Abraham" or "be faithful to my master Abraham" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-abstractnouns)

Genesis 24:13

"You can see me standing here"

"the spring" or "the well"

"the young women of the city"

Genesis 24:14

"Let it happen this way" or "Make this happen"

This is a quotation within a quotation. This can be expressed with an indirect quote. Alternate translation: "When I ask a young woman to let me have a drink of water from her jar" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotesinquotes and translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotations)

The women carried the pitchers on their shoulder. She would have to lower it to give the man a drink.

a medium-size jar made of clay used for holding and pouring liquids

The abstract noun "faithfulness" can be stated as "been faithful." Alternate translation: "that you have been faithful to the covenant you have with my master Abraham" or "you have been faithful to my master Abraham" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-abstractnouns)

Genesis 24:15

This phrase is used here to mark where the action starts. If your language has a way for doing this, you could consider using it here.

The word "behold" here alerts us to pay attention to the surprising information that follows.

This is a medium-size jar made of clay used for holding and pouring liquids. See how you translated this in [Genesis 24:14](../24/14.md).

"Rebekah's father was Bethuel. Bethuel's parents were Milkah and Nahor. Nahor was Abraham's brother"

Bethuel was Rebekah's father. See how you translated this name in [Genesis 22:22](../22/22.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

This is the name of a man. See how you translated his name in [Genesis 11:22](../11/22.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Milkah was Nahor's wife and Bethuel's mother. See how you translated this name in [Genesis 11:29](../11/29.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 24:16

The spring was somewhere lower in elevation than where the servant was standing.

Genesis 24:17

"to meet the young woman"

"a little water"

This is a medium-size jar made of clay used for holding and pouring liquids. See how you translated this in [Genesis 24:14](../24/14.md).

Genesis 24:18

"sir." Here the woman uses this term of respect to refer to the man, though she is not his slave.

"she quickly lowered her pitcher." She was carrying the pitcher on her shoulder. She had to lower it to get water for the servant.

Genesis 24:19

"I will get water"

Genesis 24:20

"So she quickly emptied her pitcher"

"the animals' water trough." A trough is a long open container for holding water for animals to drink.

Genesis 24:21

"The servant"

"watched Rebekah" or "watched the young woman"

Learning something is often spoken of as if it were seeing. Alternate translation: "to know" or "to determine" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

"had fulfilled the purpose of his journey" or "had made his journey successful." You can make explicit what specifically the servant was trying to determine. Alternate translation: "was showing him the woman who would become Isaac's wife" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

You can state clearly the understood information. Alternate translation: "or not prospered his journey" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-ellipsis)

Genesis 24:22

"a gold nose ring that weighed six grams." The weight indicates the value of the ring. Alternate translation: "an expensive gold nose ring" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-bweight)

"two gold bracelets for her arms that weighed 110 grams." The weight shows their size and value. Alternate translation: "two large gold bracelets for her arms" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-bweight)

Genesis 24:23

"Who is your father"

"is there a place in your father's house"

Apparently other men went on this journey with Abraham's servant. Here "us" refers to the servant and those traveling with him, but not to those to whom he was speaking. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-exclusive)

"to stay tonight" or "to stay for the night"

Genesis 24:24

"Rebekah said" or "the young woman said"

"to the servant"

"Bethuel is my father, and his parents are Milkah and Nahor"

Genesis 24:25

It is understood that the straw and feed are for the camels. You can make clear this understood information. Alternate translation: "We have plenty of straw and feed for the camels" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-ellipsis)

"for you to stay tonight" or "where you can stay for the night"

Here "you" refers to the servant and those traveling with him. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-you)

Genesis 24:26

"the servant"

This is a sign of humility before God. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-symaction)

Genesis 24:27

"has not stopped showing his covenant faithfulness and trustworthiness to my master." The abstract nouns "faithfulness" and "trustworthiness" can be stated as "to be faithful and trustworthy." Alternate translation: "has not stopped being faithful to his covenant and trustworthy toward my master" or "has not stopped being faithful and trustworthy to my master" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-abstractnouns)

This can be stated in positive form. Alternate translation: "continues to show" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-litotes)

"my master's family" or "my master's clan"

Genesis 24:28

Here "household" stands for all the people living in her mother's house. Alternate translation: "ran to the house and told her mother and everyone there" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

"everything that had just happened"

Genesis 24:29

This word is used here to mark a break in the main story line. Here the author tells background information about Rebekah. The author introduces her brother, Laban, to the story. (See: translationAcademy:translate/writing-background and translationAcademy:translate/writing-participants)

Genesis 24:30

These things happened before he ran out to the man. This tells why Laban ran out to the man. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-events)

This can be stated as an indirect quotation. Alternate translation: "when he had heard his sister Rebekah tell what the man had said to her" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotations)

The word "behold" here adds emphasis to what follows. "it was just as she had said: he"

Genesis 24:31

"Come in, you" or "Enter, you"

"you whom Yahweh has blessed"

Here the word "you" refers to Abraham's servant. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-you)

Laban used this question to invite Abraham's servant into his house. This question can be translated as a statement. Alternate translation: "You do not need to stay outside." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion)

Genesis 24:32

The word "came" can be translated as "went." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-go)

It is not clear who did this work. This may be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "Laban's servants unloaded the camels" or "the camels were unloaded" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

This does not say who did the work. If you state this in active form use "Laban's servants" as the subject. Alternate translation: "Laban's servants gave straw and feed to the camels, and they provided water" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

"for Abraham's servant and the men who were with him to wash their feet"

Genesis 24:33

Here, the word "they" refers to Laban's family members or to the household servants.

"gave food to the servant"

"spoken my words" or "told you why I am here"

Genesis 24:35

Here the word "he" refers to Abraham.

"become very wealthy"

The word "he" refers to Yahweh.

Genesis 24:36

Abraham's servant continues speaking to Rebekah's family.

"gave birth to a son"

"my master has given ... to his son"

Genesis 24:37

"My master made me swear that I would do what he told me to do. He said"

This refers to Canaanite females. Alternate translation: "from the Canaanite women" or "from the Canaanites"

"among whom I live." Here, "I" stands for Abraham and all of his family and servants. Alternate translation: "among whom we live" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

Genesis 24:38

"to my own clan"

Genesis 24:39

Abraham's servant continues speaking to Rebekah's family.

This is something that could possibly happen. Alternate translation: "What if the woman will not come back with me?" or "What should I do if the woman will not come back with me?" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-hypo)

Genesis 24:40

Serving Yahweh is spoken of as if Abraham were walking in Yahweh's presence. Alternate translation: "whom I serve" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

"he will make your journey successful"

"family"

Genesis 24:41

This is a hypothetical situation that Abraham did not think was likely to happen. Possible meanings are 1) "There is only one way for you to be free from my oath: if you come to my relatives and they will not give her to you, then you will be free from my oath" or, 2) building on verse 40, "If you go to my father's family and ask for a girl, you will have done what I told you to do. If they will not give her to you, then you will be free from the oath you swore to me." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-hypo)

"you will be released from the oath you made to me." Not having to fulfill an oath is spoken of as if the person is free from an object to which he was bound. Alternate translation: "you will not have to do what you swore to me that you would do" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Languages use the words come and go differently. Alternate translation: "if you arrive at my relatives' home" or "if you go to my relatives" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-go)

Genesis 24:42

Abraham's servant continues speaking to Rebekah's family.

"the well"

Genesis 24:43

The servant goes back to stating his request. These are the first two things he has to say about the woman whom he hopes will come.

"to get water"

This is a medium-size jar made of clay used for holding and pouring liquids. See how you translated this in [Genesis 24:14](../24/14.md).

Genesis 24:44

The thought that begins with the words "let the young woman who comes" in verse 43 ends here. This is the third of the three things the servant has to say about the woman whom he hopes will come.

The servant finishes his request.

Genesis 24:45

Abraham's servant continues speaking to Rebekah's family.

To pray silently in one's mind is spoken of as if he were speaking in his heart. The word "heart" refers to his thoughts and his mind. Alternate translation: "praying" or "praying quietly" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor and translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

"suddenly Rebekah came" or "I was surprised because I saw Rebekah coming"

This is a medium-size jar made of clay used for holding and pouring liquids. See how you translated this in [Genesis 24:14](../24/14.md).

The phrase "went down" is used because the spring was somewhere lower than where the servant was standing.

opening in the ground from which fresh water comes

Genesis 24:46

"gave water to the camels"

Genesis 24:47

Abraham's servant continues speaking to Rebekah's family.

"My father is Bethuel. His parents are Nahor and Milkah"

In this story, all of these items were made of gold. See how you translated these in [Genesis 24:22](../24/22.md).

Genesis 24:48

This is a sign of humility before God. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-symaction)

"brought me here"

The connecting word "because" can be used to show this is why the servant worshiped God. Alternate translation: "because Yahweh led me" (See: translationAcademy:translate/writing-connectingwords)

This refers to Bethuel, the son of Abraham's brother Nahor.

Genesis 24:49

Abraham's servant continues speaking to Rebekah's family.

"Now." Here "Now" does not mean "at this moment," but is used to draw attention to the important point that follows.

How they could show the covenant faithfulness and trustworthiness can be stated explicitly. Alternate translation: "tell me if you will be faithful and trustworthy to my master by giving Rebekah to be his son's wife" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

The word "you" refers to Laban and Bethuel. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-you)

These abstract nouns can be stated as "faithful and trustworthy." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-abstractnouns)

The understood information can be stated clearly. Alternate translation: "But if you are not prepared to treat my master with family faithfulness and trustworthiness" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-ellipsis)

Possible meanings are 1) deciding what to do is spoken of as if the person will physically turn one direction or another. Alternate translation: "so that I will know what do" or 2) the servant wants to know if he needs to travel somewhere else. Alternate translation: "so that I may continue on my journey" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor and translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

Genesis 24:50

This was the father of Laban and Rebekah.

"Yahweh has caused all of this to happen"

They are saying they do not have the authority to decide whether what God has done is good or bad. Alternate translation: "we dare not judge what Yahweh is doing" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

Genesis 24:51

"You can see Rebekah here"

"Here is Rebekah"

Genesis 24:52

"what Laban and Bethuel said"

Bowing down before God is an expression of worship to him. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-symaction)

Genesis 24:53

"silver and gold items" or "things made of silver and gold"

"expensive gifts" or "valuable gifts"

Genesis 24:54

"Abraham's servant and his men"

"slept there that night"

"got up the next morning"

"Let me leave and return"

Genesis 24:55

"at least ten more days"

"Then"

Genesis 24:56

"Abraham's servant said"

"to Rebekah's brother and mother"

"Do not delay me" or "Do not make me wait"

Here "way" stands for a journey. Alternate translation: "Yahweh has caused me to succeed in the purpose my journey" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

"Allow me to leave"

Genesis 24:59

"So the family sent Rebekah"

Rebekah was Laban's sister. Alternate translation: "their relative" or "Laban's sister"

This refers to the female servant who had fed Rebekah when she was a baby, cared for her when she was a child, and still served her.

Genesis 24:60

Rebekah was not the sister to everyone in her family. But they called her this to show that they loved her. Alternate translation: "Our dear Rebekah"

Here "mother" stands for ancestor. Alternate translation: "may you be the ancestor of millions of people" or "may you have very many descendants"

This means a very large number or an uncountable number. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

Armies would break through the gate of their enemies' cities and conquer the people. Alternate translation: "may your descendants completely defeat those who hate them" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Genesis 24:61

"Then Rebekah and her servant girls went and got on the camels"

"In this way Abraham's servant took Rebekah with him and returned to where he had come from"

Genesis 24:62

This word marks a change in the story. It was telling about the servant finding a wife, and now it will tell about Isaac.

This is the name of a water well in the Negev. See how you translated it in [Genesis 16:14](../16/14.md).

Genesis 24:63

"One evening Isaac went out to the field to think." This must have been a long time after the servant and Rebekah left her home since they had to travel a long distance.

The word "behold" here alerts us to pay attention to the surprising information that follows. "When he looked up he was surprised to see camels coming"

Genesis 24:64

"Rebekah looked up"

"she quickly got off the camel"

Genesis 24:65

"So she covered her face with her veil." This is a sign of respect and modesty towards the man she will marry. The full meaning of this can be made explicit. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-symaction and translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

a piece of cloth used to cover a person's head, shoulders and face

Genesis 24:67

Both of these phrases mean that Isaac married Rebekah. Alternate translation: "married Rebekah" or "took her as his wife" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-doublet)

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "So Rebekah comforted Isaac" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Genesis 25

Genesis 25 General Notes

Structure and formatting

Some translations set each line of poetry farther to the right than the rest of the text to make it easier to read. The ULT does this with the poetry in 25:23.

Special concepts in this chapter

Polygamy

Abraham married another wife. This was sinful of him. Many other Hebrew leaders came to marry multiple wives. This is known as "polygamy." It has never been an acceptable practice. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/sin)

Inheritance

In the ancient Near East, inheritance was passed on through the eldest son. Even though Esau and Jacob were twins, it is very important that Esau was born first. It was his birthright to receive his inheritance, but he foolishly gave it up. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/inherit and translationWords:bible/kt/birthright and translationWords:bible/kt/foolish)

Other possible translation difficulties in this chapter

God fulfill's his promise

God begins to fulfill the promise he gave to Abraham about making his descendants numerous. Many of these children through his concubines would become large people groups. This may not be easy to understand without the remainder of the Old Testament and the history it records. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 25:1

See translationAcademy:translate/translate-names.

Genesis 25:4

This refers to the people named in verses 2-4.

Genesis 25:5

"Isaac inherited all that Abraham owned." It was normal for the father to divide his wealth when he was old and not leave that for others to do after he died.

Genesis 25:7

"These were ... he lived, one hundred and seventy-five years." Abraham lived 175 years. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

Genesis 25:8

"Abraham took his last breath and died." The phrases "breathed his last" and "died" mean basically the same thing. Alternate translation: "Abraham died" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-doublet)

This is a polite way of saying a person died. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-euphemism)

These two phrases mean basically the same thing and emphasize that Abraham lived a very long time. Alternate translation: "when he had lived a very long time and was very old" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-doublet)

Living a long life is spoken of as if life were a container that becomes full. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

This means that after Abraham died, his soul went to the same place as his relatives who died before him. This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "he joined his family members who had already died" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom and translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Genesis 25:9

Ephron owned a field in Machpelah and the cave that was in that field. Abraham bought the field from Ephron.

Machpelah was the name of an area or region. See how you translated this in [Genesis 23:9](../23/09.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

These are names of men. See how you translated these men's names in [Genesis 23:8](../23/08.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Machpela was near Mamre.

This was another name for the city of Hebron. It may have been named after Mamre, the friend of Abraham who lived there. See how you translated this place name in [Genesis 23:17](../23/17.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 25:10

"Abraham had bought this field"

"the descendants of Heth" or "the Hittites." See how you translated this in [Genesis 23:5](../23/05.md).

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "They buried Abraham" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Genesis 25:11

This name means "the well of the living one who sees me." See how you translated this place name in [Genesis 16:14](../16/14.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 25:12

This word is used in English to introduce a new part of the story and information about Ishmael.

Genesis 25:13

See translationAcademy:translate/translate-names.

Genesis 25:16

This can be stated as two sentences. "These were the names of Ishmael's twelve sons. They led tribes that were named after them, and they each had their own villages and campsites"

"12" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

Here the word "princes" means that the men were leaders or rules of the tribes; it does not mean that they were the sons of a king.

Genesis 25:17

"These were ... Ishmael, one hundred and thirty-seven years." Ishmael lived 137 years. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

The terms "breathed his last" and "died" mean basically the same thing. Alternate translation: "died" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-doublet)

This means that after Ishmael died, his soul went to the same place as his relatives who died before him. This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "he joined his family members who had already died" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom and translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Genesis 25:18

"His descendants settled"

"between Havilah and Ashhur"

Havilah was located somewhere in the Arabian Desert. See how you translated this in [Genesis 2:11](../02/11.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

"in the direction of"

Possible meanings are 1) "they did not live in peace together," or 2) "they lived away from their other relatives."

Genesis 25:19

This sentence introduces the account of Isaac's descendants in Genesis 25:19-35:29. Alternate translation: "This is the account of the descendants of Isaac, Abraham's son" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 25:20

"40 years old" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

"when he married Rebekah"

Bethuel was Rebekah's father. See how you translated this name in [Genesis 22:22](../22/22.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

This was another name for the region of Mesopotamia, which about the same location as modern Iraq. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 25:21

"she was unable to become pregnant"

It can be made explicit that Rebekah was pregnant with two babies at the same time: "Rebekah, his wife, became pregnant with twins" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 25:22

"the babies inside her kept bumping against each other" or "The babies pushed against each other within her"

Rebekah was pregnant with twins. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

"She went and asked Yahweh about this." It is not clear where she went. She may have gone somewhere private to pray, or she may have gone somewhere to offer a sacrifice.

Genesis 25:23

"said to Rebekah"

This is poetic language. If your language has a way to indicate poetry, you could use it here. (See: translationAcademy:translate/writing-poetry)

Here "two nations" stands for the two children. Each child will be the father of a nation. Alternate translation: "Two nations will come from the twins within you" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Here "two peoples" stands for the two children. Each child will be the father of a people. This can be translated with an active verb. Alternate translation: "when you give birth to these two children they will be rivals" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy and translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Possible meanings are 1) "the older son will serve the younger son" or 2) "the descendants of the older son will serve the descendants of the younger son." If possible, translate it so that people could understand either meaning.

Genesis 25:24

"she was surprised to learn that there"

Genesis 25:25

Possible meanings are 1) his skin was red and he had a lot of hair on his body or 2) he had a lot of red hair on his body. Alternate translation: "red and hairy like a garment made of animal hair" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-simile)

Translators may add a footnote that says "The name Esau sounds like the word 'hairy.'"

Genesis 25:26

"holding the back part of Esau's foot"

Translators may also add a footnote that says "The name Jacob means 'he grasps the heel.'"

"60 years old" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

Genesis 25:27

"became good at hunting and killing animals for food"

"a peaceful man" or "a less active man"

This speaks about time as if it were a commodity that someone could spend. Alternate translation: "who remained in the tents much of the time" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Genesis 25:28

This word is used to mark a change in focus, shifting from the story to background information about Isaac and Rebekah. (See: translationAcademy:translate/writing-background)

Here the word "loved" means "favored" or "preferred."

"because he ate the animals that Esau had hunted" or "because he enjoyed eating the wild animal meat that Esau caught"

Genesis 25:29

Since this is the beginning of a story about something that happened one time, some translators may want to start it with a phrase like "One day, Jacob cooked" in a similar manner to the UST.

"boiled some food" or "cooked some soup." This stew was made of boiled lentils ([Genesis 25:34](../25/34.md)).

"he was weak because he was very hungry" or "he was very hungry"

Genesis 25:30

"I am weak from hunger" or "I am very hungry"

Translators may add a footnote that says "The name Edom means 'red.'"

Genesis 25:31

right as firstborn to inherit most of the father's wealth

Genesis 25:32

Esau was exaggerating to emphasize how hungry he was. Alternate translation: "I am so hungry I feel like I could die" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-hyperbole)

Esau used a question to emphasize that eating was more important than a birthright. This can be translated as a statement. Alternate translation: "My inheritance is no good to me if I die of hunger!" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion)

Genesis 25:33

What Jacob wanted Esau to swear can be stated explicitly. Alternate translation: "First swear to me that you will sell me your birthright" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 25:34

These are like beans, but their seeds are very small, round, and somewhat flat. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-unknown)

"Esau showed that he did not value his birthright"

Genesis 26

Genesis 26 General Notes

Special concepts in this chapter

Trust

When things in the land were bad, Isaac did not trust in Yahweh. Instead, he ran to the safety of Egypt. Even when Abraham's descendants did not trust in Yahweh's faithfulness to fulfill his covenant, Yahweh remained faithful to his covenant and blessed Isaac. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/trust, translationWords:bible/kt/faithful and translationWords:bible/kt/fulfill and translationWords:bible/kt/covenant)

Wells

In the ancient Near East, wells were very important strategically. Therefore, they were a sign of power and a sign of God's blessing being upon Isaac.

Other possible translation difficulties in this chapter

"She is my sister"

Isaac was afraid the Egyptians would see him as a foreigner and upon seeing his beautiful wife, they would try to kill him. This would free Rebekah to marry someone else. Apparently, it would have been easy for them to kill a foreigner without punishment. If she was Isaac's sister, they would have shown favor to him. This is the same thing his father, Abraham, did. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit and translationWords:bible/kt/favor)

Genesis 26:1

This word is used here to mark a new part of the story.

"there was a famine" or "there was another famine"

You can state explicitly the land to which this refers. Alternate translation: "in the land where Isaac and his family lived" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

"that had happened during Abraham's life" or "that had happened while Abraham was alive"

Genesis 26:2

Yahweh begins to speak to Isaac.

"appeared to Isaac"

It was common to speak of leaving the promised land as "going down" to another place. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

Genesis 26:3

"for I will give all these lands to you and your descendants"

"I will do what I promised Abraham your father I would do"

Genesis 26:4

Yahweh continues speaking to Isaac.

"I will cause you to have very many descendants."

This speaks about the number of Isaac's descendants as if they were the same as the number of stars. See how you translated this in [Genesis 22:17](../22/17.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-simile)

This refers to everything we see above the earth, including the sun, moon, and stars.

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "I will bless all the nations of the earth" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Genesis 26:5

The phrases "obeyed my voice" and "kept my instructions, my commandments, my statutes, and my laws" mean basically the same thing. Alternate translation: "Abraham obeyed me and did everything I commanded him to do" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-parallelism)

Here "voice" stands for Yahweh. Alternate translation: "obeyed me" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

Genesis 26:6

Only Isaac is mentioned because he is the leader of the family, but his whole family was with him. Alternate translation: "So Isaac and his family settled in Gerar" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 26:7

Here "fear" refers to the unpleasant feeling a person has when there is a threat of harm to himself or others. "He was afraid to say"

"in order to take Rebekah"

Genesis 26:8

The word "behold" shows that what Abimelech saw surprised him. Alternate translation: "And he was surprised to see that Isaac"

Possible meanings are 1) he was touching her the way a husband touches his wife or 2) he was laughing and talking with her the way a husband talks with his wife.

Genesis 26:9

Abimelech probably sent someone to tell Isaac that Abimelech wanted to see him. Alternate translation: "Abimelech sent someone to bring Isaac to him" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

This is a quotation within a quotation. It can be stated as an indirect quotation. Alternate translation: "Why did you say that she is your sister?" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotesinquotes and translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotations)

"so he could take her"

Genesis 26:10

Abimelech used this question to scold Isaac. Alternate translation: "You should not have done this to us!" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion)

The word "lain" here is a euphemism for "had sexual relations." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-euphemism)

This speaks about causing someone to be guilty as if "guilt" were an object that is placed on someone. Alternate translation: "you would have caused us to be guilty of taking a man's wife" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Here "us" refers to Abimelech and his people. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-exclusive)

Genesis 26:11

Here "touches" means to touch in a harmful way. Alternate translation: "Whoever harms this man" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

Abimelech may have intended to tell someone to kill anyone who might harm Isaac or Rebekah. This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "I will put him to death" or "I will order my men to kill him" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Genesis 26:12

This begins a new part of the story. It changes from telling about Isaac calling Rebekah his sister, and it starts to tell about how Isaac became very rich and the Philistines were jealous of him.

"in Gerar"

This means "one hundred times as much as he planted." It can be translated more generally as "a very large crop." (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

Genesis 26:13

"Isaac became rich" or "He became rich"

"he gained more and more until he became very wealthy"

Genesis 26:14

This may also include goats. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Here "household" stands for workers or servants. Alternate translation: "many servants" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

"The Philistines were jealous of him"

Genesis 26:15

Here this word does not mean "at this moment." It is indicating where the action in the story begins. It can be translated with the connecting word "So" to show that this is a result of what happened in [Genesis 26:12-14](./12.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/writing-connectingwords)

The phrase "in the days of" stands for a person's lifetime. Alternate translation: "when Abraham, his father, was living" or "during his father Abraham's lifetime"

Genesis 26:16

Possible meanings are 1) this is another action to force Isaac and his people to leave. Alternate translation: "Then Abimelech said" or "Finally Abimelech said" or 2) Abimelech made this decision because he saw that his people were jealous and acting in a hostile way towards Isaac. Alternate translation: "Therefore Abimelech said" (See: translationAcademy:translate/writing-connectingwords)

"much stronger than we are"

Genesis 26:17

Only Isaac is mentioned because he is the leader, but his family and servants went with him. Alternate translation: "So Isaac and his household left" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 26:18

Here "Isaac" stands for Isaac and his servants. Alternate translation: "Isaac and his servants dug out" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

"which Abraham's servants had dug"

"during his father Abraham's lifetime" or "when Abraham, his father, was living"

This was the reason that Isaac dug them out. Possible ways to translate this are: 1) Since this happened first, this sentence can come before the sentence about Isaac digging them out, as in the UST. or 2) This sentence can start with "Isaac did this because the Philistines had stopped them up." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-events)

"had filled them with earth"

Genesis 26:19

This phrase refers to a natural spring they uncovered when they were digging a new well. It provided a continuous flow of fresh drinking water. Alternate translation: "fresh water" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

Genesis 26:20

men who tended livestock

Here "ours" refers to the herdsmen of Gerar. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-exclusive)

Translators may also add a footnote that says "The name Esek means 'quarrel' or 'argue.'" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 26:21

"Then Isaac's servants dug"

"the herdsmen of Gerar argued with Isaac's herdsmen"

"so Isaac gave it"

Translators may add a footnote that says "The name Sitnah means 'oppose' or 'accuse.'" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 26:22

Translators may add a footnote that says "The name Rehoboth means 'make room for' or 'empty place.'" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Isaac was speaking about himself and his household.

Genesis 26:23

Here "went up" is probably a reference to going north. Say that he departed in the most natural way for your language. Alternate translation: "Isaac left there and went to Beersheba"

Genesis 26:24

"will cause your descendants to increase greatly" or "will cause your descendants to be very many"

"for my servant Abraham" or you can make the full meaning explicit. Alternate translation: "because I promised my servant Abraham that I would do this" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 26:25

You can make explicit why Isaac built an altar. Alternate translation: "Isaac built an altar there to sacrifice to Yahweh" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

To "call on" means to pray or to worship. Here "name" stands for Yahweh. Alternate translation: "prayed to Yahweh" or "worshiped Yahweh" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Genesis 26:26

"went to Isaac"

This is the name of a man. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Possible meanings are 1) "Abimelech's friend" or 2) "Abimelech's advisor."

This is the name of a man. See how you translated his name in [Genesis 21:22](../21/22.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 26:28

This refers to Abimelech, Ahuzzath, and Phicol. One of them spoke and the other two agreed with what he said. It does not mean they all spoke at the same time. Alternate translation: "one of them said"

"We know" or "We are certain"

"So we want to make a covenant"

Genesis 26:29

This can also be translated as the beginning of a new sentence. "We have done only good to you"

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "Yahweh has blessed you" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Genesis 26:30

Eating a meal together was a part of making a covenant with one another. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Here "them" refers to "Abimelech, Ahuzzath, and Phicol"

Here "they" refers to Isaac, Abimelech, Ahuzzath, and Phicol. Alternate translation: "they all ate"

Genesis 26:31

"They awoke early"

Genesis 26:33

"So he called the well Shibah." Translators may add a footnote that says "The name Shibah sounds like the word that means 'oath.'" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Translators may add a footnote saying "Beersheba can mean either "well of the oath" or "well of seven." (See note on [Genesis 21:32](../21/32.md))

Genesis 26:34

Most of Genesis 26 was about Isaac. These verses are about his older son Esau.

"40" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

"he married." You can state explicitly that he married two women. Alternate translation: "he took two wives" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

These are the names of Esau's wives. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

These are names of men. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

"the descendant of Heth" or "a descendant of Heth." The Hittite people were the descendants of Heth. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 26:35

Here "they" refers to Judith and Basemath. To make someone sorrowful or miserable is spoken of as if "sorrow" were an object that a person could bring to another person. Alternate translation: "They made Isaac and Rebekah sorrowful" or "Isaac and Rebekah were miserable because of them" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Genesis 27

Genesis 27 General Notes

Structure and formatting

Some translations set each line of poetry farther to the right than the rest of the text to make it easier to read. The ULT does this with the poetry in 27:27-29 and in 27:39-40.

Special concepts in this chapter

Blessing

In the ancient Near East, a father's blessing was very important. This spoken blessing was legally binding. Jacob previously received the birthright from Esau and was guaranteed the double portion of land money that was supposed to be inherited by the older son, Esau. In this chapter, Jacob tricks Isaac into giving him Esau's blessing. This means that he is to inherit the promises of the covenant Yahweh made with Abraham. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/bless, translationWords:bible/kt/birthright, translationWords:bible/kt/inherit and translationWords:bible/kt/promise and translationWords:bible/kt/covenant)

Genesis 27:1

This speaks about being nearly blind as if the eyes were a lamp and the light has nearly gone out. Alternate translation: "he was nearly blind" or "he was almost blind" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

"I am here" or "I am listening." See how you translated this in [Genesis 22:1](../22/01.md).

Genesis 27:2

The phrase "see here" adds emphasis to what follows. Alternate translation: "Listen carefully" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

It is implied that Isaac knows he will die soon. Alternate translation: "I may die any day now" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

This refers to physical death.

Genesis 27:3

Isaac continues giving instructions to his older son Isaac.

"your hunting equipment"

A quiver is a case for holding arrows. Alternate translation: "your quiver of arrows" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

"hunt a wild animal for me"

Genesis 27:4

The word "delicious" refers to something that tastes very good. Alternate translation: "Cook for me the tasty meat that I love" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

In Bible times, a father would often pronounce a formal blessing on his children.

Genesis 27:5

This verse is background information for the description of the events that follow. (See: translationAcademy:translate/writing-background)

This verse is background information for the description of the events that follow. The word "now" shows that the author is going to begin to talk about Rebekah and Jacob. (See: translationAcademy:translate/writing-background)

"Rebekah heard Isaac speaking to his son Esau"

Esau was the son of both Isaac and Rebekah. The author calls Esau "his son" to emphasize that Isaac preferred Esau over Isaac.

Genesis 27:6

This verse continues the background information that begins with the words "Now Rebekah heard" in verse 5. It is background information for the description of the events that follow. (See: translationAcademy:translate/writing-background)

This verse continues the background information that begins with the words "Esau went ... bring it back" in verse 5. It is background information for the description of the events that follow. After Esau leaves, Rebekah speaks to Jacob because of what she has heard. "So when Esau went ... bring it back, Rebekah spoke to Jacob" (See: translationAcademy:translate/writing-connectingwords and translationAcademy:translate/writing_background)

Jacob was the son of both Isaac and Rebekah. The author calls Jacob "her son" here to emphasize that Rebekah preferred Jacob over Esau.

The phrase "see here" adds emphasis to what follows. Alternate translation: "Listen carefully"

Genesis 27:7

These are the words that the author introduces with the words "He said" in verse 6. This is a quotation within a quotation. It can be stated as an indirect quotation. "He told Esau to hunt a wild animal, and to make the tasty meat that he loves. Then before he dies, your father will bless Esau in the presence of Yahweh." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotesinquotes and translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotations)

"Bring me a wild animal that you hunt and kill"

"cook for me the tasty meat that I love." See how this was translated in [Genesis 27:4](../27/04.md).

"bless you before Yahweh"

"before I die"

Genesis 27:8

Rebekah continues to speak to her younger son Jacob.

This does not mean "at this moment," but is used to draw attention to the important point that follows.

Rebekah said "my voice" to refer to what she was saying. Alternate translation: "obey me and do what I tell you" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Genesis 27:9

The word "delicious" refers to something that tastes very good. See how a similar sentence was translated in [Genesis 27:4](../27/04.md).

Genesis 27:10

"Then take it to your father"

"and after he eats it, he will bless you"

The word "bless" refers to the formal blessing a father pronounces on his children.

"before he dies"

Genesis 27:11

"I am a man with smooth skin" or "I am not hairy"

Genesis 27:12

"he will think that I am a liar" or "he will know that I am deceiving him"

Being cursed or blessed is spoken of as if a curse and a blessing are objects that are placed on a person. Alternate translation: "Then because of this, he will curse me and not bless me" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Genesis 27:13

"let your curse be on me, my son." Being cursed is spoken of as if the curse were on object that is placed on the person. Alternate translation: "let your father curse me instead of you, my son" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Rebekah said "my voice" to refer to what she was saying. Alternate translation: "obey what I tell you" or "obey me" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

"bring me the young goats"

Genesis 27:14

The word "delicious" refers to something that tastes very good. See how a similar sentence was translated in [Genesis 27:4](../27/04.md).

Genesis 27:16

The goat skins still had the hair on them.

Genesis 27:17

"She gave to her son Jacob the delicious food and bread which she had prepared"

Genesis 27:18

"Yes, I am listening" or "Yes, what is it?" See how you translated this in [Genesis 22:1](../22/01.md).

Genesis 27:19

"I have done what you told me to do"

The word "game" refers to wild animals that someone hunts and kills. See how "game" was translated in [Genesis 27:3](../27/03.md).

Genesis 27:20

"Jacob replied"

This is an idiom meaning that God caused it to happen. Alternate translation: "helped me to succeed while hunting" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

Genesis 27:21

"if you are really my son Esau"

Genesis 27:22

"Jacob approached Isaac his father"

Here Issac speaks of Jacob's voice as representing Jacob. Alternate translation: "You sound like Jacob" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

Here Issac speaks of Esau's hands as representing Esau. Alternate translation: "but your hands feel like Esau's hands" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

Genesis 27:24

Isaac asks this question before blessing his son. Alternate translation: "But first Isaac asked" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-events)

Genesis 27:25

The word "game" refers to a wild animal that people hunt and kill. See how "game" was translated in [Genesis 27:7](../27/07.md).

"Isaac drank it"

Genesis 27:27

It can be made explicit that the clothes smelled like Esau's clothes. Alternate translation: "he smelled his clothes and they smelled like Esau's clothes, so Isaac blessed him" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

"Isaac smelled"

"the scent"

"then he blessed him." This refers to the formal blessing a father pronounces on his children.

The word "see" is used as an emphatic figure of speech to mean "it is true." Alternate translation: "Truly, the smell of my son"

Here the word "blessed" means that Yahweh has caused good things to happen to the field and it has become fruitful. Alternate translation: "that Yahweh has caused to be very productive" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

Genesis 27:28

This is Isaac's blessing. He thought he was speaking to Esau, but he was speaking to Jacob.

Here "you" is singular and refers to Jacob. But the blessing would also apply to Jacob's descendants. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-you and translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

"Dew" is drops of water that form on the plants during the night. This can be made explicit in the translation. Alternate translation: "night mist from heaven to water your crops" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Having fertile land is spoken of as if the earth were fat or rich. Alternate translation: "good soil for producing crops" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

If "grain" and "wine" are unknown, this can be stated more generally. Alternate translation: "plenty of food and drink" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 27:29

Here these pronouns are singular and refer to Jacob. But the blessing also applies to Jacob's descendants. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-you and translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

Here "nations" refers to the people. Alternate translation: "people from all nations bow down" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

This means to bend over to humbly express respect and honor toward someone. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-symaction)

"Become a master over your brothers"

Isaac is speaking this blessing directly to Jacob. But, it also applies to Jacob's descendants who will rule over the descendants of Esau and the descendants of any other of Jacob's brothers that he may have. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

"your mother's sons will bow down to you"

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "May God curse everyone who curses you" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "May God bless everyone who blesses you" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Genesis 27:30

"had just left the tent of Isaac his father"

Genesis 27:31

"tasty meat that I love." See how this was translated in [Genesis 27:3](../27/03.md).

Here "your son's" was a polite way of Esau referring to his own food he prepared. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-123person)

The word "game" refers to wild animals that people hunt to eat. See how "game" was translated in [Genesis 27:7](../27/07.md).

This refers to the formal blessing a father pronounces on his children.

Genesis 27:32

"said to Esau"

Genesis 27:33

"Isaac began to shake"

Game refers to a wild animal that people hunt and kill. See how "game" was translated in [Genesis 27:7](../27/07.md).

Genesis 27:34

Esau's anguish was similar to the taste of something bitter. Alternate translation: "he cried loudly" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Genesis 27:35

This is a figure of speech meaning Jacob took what was Esau's. Alternate translation: "I have blessed him instead of you" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Genesis 27:36

Esau uses a question to emphasize his anger at Jacob. Alternate translation: "Jacob is certainly the right name for my brother!" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion)

Translators may also add a footnote that says: "The name Jacob means 'he grasps the heel.' In the original language the name 'Jacob' also sounds like the word for 'he deceives.'"

This speaks about a birthright as if it were an object that a person could take away. Alternate translation: "What was once my birthright is now his because he tricked me" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

This speaks about a blessing as if it were an object that person could take away. Alternate translation: "now he has tricked you into blessing him instead of me" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Esau knows that his father cannot bless him with the same things that he blessed Jacob. Esau is asking if there is anything left to say to him that Isaac did not say while blessing Jacob.

Genesis 27:37

Isaac uses a question to emphasize that there is nothing else he can do. Alternate translation: "There is nothing else I can do for you!" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion)

Genesis 27:38

This can be stated in positive form. "My father, do you have one more blessing for me"

Genesis 27:39

"said to Esau"

"Pay attention, because what I am about to say is both true and important: the place"

This is a figure of speech referring to the earth's fertility. Alternate translation: "far from the fertile soil" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

"Dew" is drops of water that form on the plants during the night. This can be made explicit in the translation. Alternate translation: "the night mist from the sky to water your crops" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 27:40

In 27:39-40 these pronouns are singular and refer to Esau, but what Isaac says also applies to Esau's descendants (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

Here "sword" stands for violence. Alternate translation: "You will rob and kill people in order to get what you need to live" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

This speaks about someone having a master as if the master's control over the person were a yoke that the person had to carry. Alternate translation: "you will free yourself from his control" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Genesis 27:41

Here "heart" stands for Esau himself. Alternate translation: "Esau said to himself" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

This refers to a number of days a person grieves when a family member dies.

Genesis 27:42

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "Someone told Rebekah about Esau's plan" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

"Look" or "Listen" or "Pay attention to what I am about to tell you"

"is making himself feel better"

Genesis 27:43

This does not mean "at this moment," but is used to draw attention to the important point that follows.

"leave here quickly and go to Laban"

Genesis 27:44

"for a period of time"

"until you brother calms down"

Genesis 27:45

No longer being angry is spoken of as if the anger turns to a different direction away from the person. Alternate translation: "until he is no longer angry with you" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Rebekah uses a question to emphasize her concern. Alternate translation: "I do not want to lose both of you in one day!" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion)

It is implied that if Esau kills Jacob, then they will execute Esau as a murderer. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

This is a polite way of referring to her sons dying. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-euphemism)

Genesis 27:46

Rebekah is exaggerating to emphasize how upset she is about the Hittite women that Esau married. Alternate translation: "I am terribly upset" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-hyperbole)

"these Hittite women" or "descendants of Heth"

The phrase "daughters of the land" means the local females. Alternate translation: "like these women who live in this land" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

Rebekah uses a question to emphasize how upset she would be if Jacob marries a Hittite woman. Alternate translation: "My life will be awful!" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion)

Genesis 28

Genesis 28 General Notes

Structure and formatting

Even though Jacob tricked his father in order to receive Esau's blessing, the chapter repeats the blessing, ensuring he inherits the blessings promised to Abraham. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/bless and translationWords:bible/kt/inherit and translationWords:bible/kt/promise)

Special concepts in this chapter

Jacob's dream

Jacob had a dream or received a vision. The purpose of this dream is to show that, despite Jacob's sin, God is giving Abraham's covenant promises to Jacob and his descendants. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/sin and translationWords:bible/kt/covenant and translationWords:bible/kt/promise)

Bethel

This was an important city for Abraham and his descendants. It is possible that there is some theological significance to the city of Bethel.

Genesis 28:1

"Do not take"

Genesis 28:2

"Go right away"

This was another name for the region of Mesopotamia, which about the same location as modern Iraq. See how this was translated in [Genesis 25:20](../25/20.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

This refers to a person's descendants or other relatives. Alternate translation: "family" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Bethuel was Rebekah's father. See how you translated this name in [Genesis 22:22](../22/22.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

"your grandfather"

"from the daughters"

"your uncle"

Genesis 28:3

Isaac continues speaking to Jacob

The word "multiply" explains how God would make Jacob "fruitful." Alternate translation: "give you many children and descendants" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-doublet)

Genesis 28:4

This speaks about blessing someone as if a blessing were an object that a person can give. The abstract noun "the blessing" can be stated as "bless." Alternate translation: "May God bless you and your descendants as he blessed Abraham" or "May God give to you and your descendants what he promised to Abraham" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor and translationAcademy:translate/figs-abstractnouns)

God giving the land of Canaan to Jacob and his descendants is spoken of as if a child were inheriting money or possessions from his father. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

"the land where you have been staying"

"which God promised to Abraham"

Genesis 28:5

This was another name for the region of Mesopotamia, which about the same location as modern Iraq. See how this was translated in [Genesis 25:20](../25/20.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Bethuel was Rebekah's father. See how you translated this name in [Genesis 22:22](../22/22.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 28:6

The story changes from Jacob to Esau

This word is used here to mark a change from the story to background information about Esau. (See: translationAcademy:translate/writing-background)

This was another name for the region of Mesopotamia, which about the same location as modern Iraq. See how this was translated in [Genesis 25:20](../25/20.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

"to take a wife for himself"

"Esau also saw that Isaac had blessed Jacob"

"Do not take"

"daughters of Canaan" or "Canaanite women"

Genesis 28:8

This continues the background information about Esau.

"Esau realized"

"his father Isaac did not approve of the women of Canaan"

"daughters of Canaan" or "the Canaanite women"

Genesis 28:9

"Because of that, he went"

"in addition to the wives that he already had"

This is the name of one of Ishmael's daughters. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

This is the name of one of Ishmael's sons. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 28:10

The story switches back to Jacob

Genesis 28:11

"He came to a certain place and, because the sun had set, he decided to stay for the night"

Genesis 28:12

"Jacob had a dream"

"with the bottom of it touching the ground"

This refers to the place where God lives.

Genesis 28:13

The word "behold" here alerts us to pay attention to the surprising information that follows.

Possible meanings are 1) "Yahweh was standing at the top of the stairway" or 2) "Yahweh was standing next to Jacob"

Here "father" means "ancestor." Alternate translation: "Abraham your ancestor" or "Abraham your forefather"

Genesis 28:14

God continues to talk to Jacob in a dream.

God compares Jacob's descendants to the dust of the earth to emphasize their huge number. Alternate translation: "You will have more descendants than you can count" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-simile)

The word "you" is singular and refers to Jacob. Here Jacob represents his descendants. Alternate translation: "your descendants will spread out to the west" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

This means the people will extend the borders of their land and occupy more territory.

This phrases are used together to mean "all directions." Alternate translation: "in all directions" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "I will bless all families on the earth through you and your descendants" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Genesis 28:15

"Pay attention, because what I am about to say is both true and important: I am"

"for I will not leave you until I have done all"

"I will keep you safe" or "I will protect you"

"I will bring you back to this land"

Genesis 28:16

"woke up from his sleep"

Genesis 28:17

The phrase "the gate of heaven" explains that this place is the entrance to "the house of God" and "the entrance to where God lives." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-doublet)

This speaks about the entrance to the place where God lives as if it were a literal kingdom that had a gate that someone has to open to let people in. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Genesis 28:18

This is a memorial pillar, that is, simply a large stone or boulder set up on its end.

This action symbolizes that Jacob is dedicating the pillar to God. The full meaning of this statement can be made explicit. Alternate translation: "poured oil on the top of it in order to dedicate the pillar to God" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-symaction and translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 28:19

Translators may also add a footnote that says "The name Bethel means 'house of God.'"

This is the name of a city. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 28:20

Jacob begins to make a vow to Yahweh.

"made a vow" or "solemnly promised God"

Jacob is speaking to God in the third person. This can be stated in the second person. Alternate translation: "If you will ... clothes to wear" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-123person)

This stands for Jacob's journey to find a wife and to return home. Alternate translation: "on this journey" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Here "bread" stands for food in general. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

Genesis 28:21

The vow that began with the words "If God will ... clothes to wear" in verse 20 continues here.

The vow that began with the words "If God will ... clothes to wear" in verse 20 continues here. Jacob is speaking to God in the third person. This can be stated in the second person. "If you will ... clothes to wear ... so that I return safely ... then you, Yahweh, will be the God that I will worship" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-123person)

Here "house" stands for Jacob's family. Alternate translation: "to my father and the rest of my family" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Genesis 28:22

This means that the stone will mark the place where God appeared to him and it will be a place where people can worship God. Alternate translation: "God's house" or "God's place"

Genesis 29

Genesis 29 General Notes

Structure and formatting

This chapter records the conflict between Jacob's wives, Rachel and Leah. This account continues into the next chapter.

Special concepts in this chapter

Shepherds

Although the exact reasoning for the shepherds' unwillingness to give water to the sheep is unknown, it is probable they were being lazy. The actions of these shepherds contrast Jacob's actions.

Kissing

It was common in the ancient Near East for relatives to greet each other with a kiss. There was nothing sexual about this type of kissing.

Marriage

It was customary in the ancient Near East for a man to work for a woman's father in order to earn the right to marry her. It is unknown how common it was for a father to have his younger daughter marry before an older daughter. It was also sinful for Jacob to marry more than one wife. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/sin)

Genesis 29:1

This means the people of Paddan Aram, which is a land east of the land of Canaan.

Genesis 29:2

The word "behold" marks the beginning of another event in the larger story. Your language may have a way of doing this.

"For from that well." This phrase marks a change from the story to background information about how the shepherds watered the flocks. (See: translationAcademy:translate/writing-background)

"the shepherds would water" or "those taking care of the sheep would water"

Here "mouth" is a way of referring to an opening. Alternate translation: "the opening of the well" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

Genesis 29:4

"Jacob said to the shepherds"

This is a polite way to greet a stranger.

Genesis 29:5

Here "son" refers to a male descendant. Another possible meaning is "Laban the grandson of Nahor."

Genesis 29:6

"Now look! Rachel his daughter is coming with the sheep"

Genesis 29:7

"the sun is still high in the sky" or "the sun is still shining brightly"

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "for you to gather the flocks" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

This means to gather them together inside a fence for them to stay for the night. The full meaning of this can be made explicit. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

"let them eat grass in the field"

Genesis 29:8

"We have to wait to water them." This has to do with timing, not permission.

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "until the other shepherds gather their flocks" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Here "mouth" is way of referring to an opening. Alternate translation: "from the well" or "from the opening of the well" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

"then we will water the sheep"

Genesis 29:10

"his uncle"

Here "mouth" is a way of referring to an opening. Alternate translation: "the well" or "the opening of the well" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

Genesis 29:11

In ancient Near East, it is common to greet a relative with a kiss. However, it is normally done between men. If your language has an affectionate greeting for a relative, use that. If not, use what is appropriate.

Jacob weeps because he is so happy. The full meaning of this statement can be made explicit. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 29:12

"related to her father"

Genesis 29:13

"his nephew"

"hugged him"

In ancient Near East, it is common to greet a relative with a kiss. However, it is normally done between men. If your language has an affectionate greeting for a relative, use that. If not, use what is appropriate.

"then Jacob told Laban everything he told Rachel"

Genesis 29:14

This phrase means they are directly related. Alternate translation: "my relative" or "a member of my family" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Genesis 29:15

Laban uses a question to emphasize that he should pay Jacob for working for him. The question can be translated as a statement. This can also be stated in positive form. Alternate translation: "It is certainly right that I should pay you for working for me even though you are my relative." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion and translationAcademy:translate/figs-litotes)

Genesis 29:16

The word "now" is used here to mark a change from the story to background information about Laban and his daughters. (See: translationAcademy:translate/writing-background)

Genesis 29:17

Possible meanings are 1) "Leah's eyes were pretty" or 2) "Leah's eyes were plain"

Genesis 29:18

Here the word "loved" refers to a romantic attraction between a man and a woman.

Genesis 29:19

"rather than give her to another man"

Genesis 29:20

"but the time seemed to him to be only a few days"

"on account of the love he had for her" or "because of his love for her"

Genesis 29:21

The phrase "have been completed" can be stated in active form. The statement is emphatic. Alternate translation: Give me my wife, so that I may marry her, for I have completed the length of time that I was to work for you!"Give me Rachel so that I may marry her, for I have worked seven years for you!" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Genesis 29:22

"prepared a wedding feast." Most likely Laban had others prepare the feast. Alternate translation: "had others prepare a wedding feast" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Genesis 29:23

"who had sexual relations with her." You may need to use other, more polite words here. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-euphemism)

Genesis 29:24

Here the author gives background information about Laban giving Zilpah to Leah. Most likely he gave Zilpah to Leah before the wedding. (See: translationAcademy:translate/writing-background)

This is the name of Leah's female servant. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 29:25

"Jacob was surprised to see it was Leah in bed with him." The word "behold" here shows that Jacob was surprised by what he saw.

Jacob uses a question to express his anger and surprise. This rhetorical question can be translated as a statement. Alternate translation: "I cannot believe you did this to me!" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion)

Jacob uses these questions to express his hurt that Laban had tricked him. This rhetorical question can be translated as a statement. Alternate translation: "I served you for seven years to marry Rachel!" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion)

Genesis 29:26

"In our family we do not give"

Genesis 29:27

"Finish celebrating Leah's bridal week"

The full meaning can be made explicit. Alternate translation: "next week we will give you Rachel also" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 29:28

"And Jacob did what Laban asked, and finished celebrating Leah's bridal week"

Genesis 29:29

This is the name of Rachel's female servant. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 29:30

"Jacob had sexual relations with Rachel." You may need to use other, more polite words here. See how similar words are translated in [Genesis 29:23](../29/23.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-euphemism)

This refers to the romantic love between a man and a woman.

Genesis 29:31

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "Jacob did not love Leah" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

This is an exaggeration to emphasize that Jacob loved Rachel more than Leah. Alternate translation: "loved less than Rachel" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-hyperbole)

God causing Leah to be able to become pregnant is spoken of as if God is opening her womb. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

"was not able to become pregnant"

Genesis 29:32

"Leah became pregnant and gave birth to a son"

Translators may also add a footnote that says: "The name Reuben means 'See, a son.'" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Leah was experiencing emotional pain because Jacob had rejected her. The abstract noun "affliction" can be stated as a verb. Alternate translation: "Yahweh saw that I was suffering" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-abstractnouns)

Genesis 29:33

"Then Leah became pregnant"

"gave birth to a son"

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "Yahweh has heard that my husband does not love me" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Translators may also add a footnote that says "The name Simeon means 'heard.'" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 29:34

"my husband will embrace me"

"I have given birth to three sons for him"

Translators may also add a footnote that says "The name Levi means 'attached.'" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 29:35

"Leah became pregnant again"

"gave birth to a son"

Translators may also add a footnote that says "The name Judah means 'praise.'" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 30

Genesis 30 General Notes

Structure and formatting

This chapter continues the story of the conflict between Rachel and Leah.

Special concepts in this chapter

Women and their children

In the ancient Near East, it was important for a married woman to have many children. If a woman did not have many children, people believed it brought shame upon her. This is one of the reasons why Rachel and Leah were always jealous of each other. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/jealous)

Speckled and spotted

Speckled and spotted sheep were considered to be imperfect. Therefore, they were considered to be much less valuable than the spotless sheep. Despite Jacob's fair offer, Laban once again tried to cheat him out of something he deserved. Jacob anticipated Laban's cheating.

Genesis 30:1

"When Rachel realized that she was unable to become preganant"

Rachel is exaggerating to show how upset she is about not having children. Alternate translation: "I will feel completely worthless" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-hyperbole)

"Cause me to become pregnant"

Genesis 30:2

Jacob's anger is spoken of as if it were a fire. Alternate translation: "Jacob was very angry with Rachel" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

This is a rhetorical question that Jacob uses to scold Rachel. It can be translated as a statement. Alternate translation: "I am not God! I am not the one who is preventing you from having children!" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion)

Genesis 30:3

"Rachel said"

"Look" or "Listen" or "Pay attention to what I am about to tell you"

At that time, this was an acceptable way for a barren woman to have children that would legally belong to her. The full meaning of this may be made explicit. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

This is the name of Rachel's female servant. See how you translated this name in [Genesis 29:29](../29/29.md).

This is a polite way of talking about sexual relations. You may need to use different words in your language. Alternate translation: "Have sexual relations with her" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-euphemism)

This is a way of saying that the child that Bilhah gives birth to will belong to Rachel. Alternate translation: "for me" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

"and in this way she will cause me to have children"

Genesis 30:4

This is a polite way of talking about sexual relations. You may need to use different words in your language. Alternate translation: "Jacob had sexual relations with her" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-euphemism)

Genesis 30:5

This is the name of Rachel's female servant. See how you translated this name in [Genesis 29:29](../29/29.md).

"gave birth to a son for Jacob"

Genesis 30:6

"Rachel gave him the name"

Translators may also add a footnote that says "The name Dan means 'he judged.'" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 30:7

"Bilhah ... became pregnant again"

"gave birth to a second son for Jacob"

Genesis 30:8

The phrase "wrestlings have I wrestled" is an idiom used for emphasis. It is also a metaphor that speaks of Rachel's attempts to have a child like her sister as if she were having a physical fight with Leah. Alternate translation: "I have had a great struggle to have children like my older sister, Leah" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom and translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

"I have won" or "I have succeeded"

Translators may also add a footnote that says "The name Naphtali means 'my struggle.'"

Genesis 30:9

"When Leah became aware that"

"she gave Zilpah, her servant, to Jacob as a wife"

This is the name of Leah's female servant. See how you translated this in [Genesis 29:24](../29/24.md).

Genesis 30:10

"gave birth to a son for Jacob"

Genesis 30:11

"How fortunate!" or "What good luck!"

Translators may also add a footnote that says "The name Gad means 'fortunate.'"

Genesis 30:12

This is the name of Leah's female servant. See how you translated this name in [Genesis 29:24](../29/24.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

"gave birth to a second son for Jacob"

Genesis 30:13

"How blessed I am!" or "How happy I am!"

"the women" or "the young women"

Translators may also add a footnote that says "The name Asher means 'happy.'" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 30:14

"Reuben went out"

Here the phrase "in the days of" is an idiom that refers to the season or time of year. Alternate translation: "at the time of year of the wheat harvest" or "during the wheat harvest" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

This is a fruit that was said to increase fertility and the desire to sleep with one's lover. Alternate translation: "love fruit" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-unknown)

Genesis 30:15

"Do you not care ... my husband?" This is a rhetorical question used to scold Rachel. This question can be translated as a statement. Alternate translation: "It is bad enough ... my husband." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion)

This is a rhetorical question, used to scold Rachel. This question can be translated as a statement. Alternate translation: "Now you want ... too!" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion)

Here "lie with" is a euphemism. Alternate translation: "Then Jacob will have sexual intercourse with you" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-euphemism)

Genesis 30:16

Here "come in to" is a euphemism. Alternate translation: "You must have sexual intercourse with me" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-euphemism)

"for the price of my son's mandrakes." See how you translated "mandrake" in [Genesis 30:14](../30/14.md).

Genesis 30:17

"She became pregnant"

"gave birth to a fifth son for Jacob"

Genesis 30:18

God rewarding Leah is spoken of as if he were a boss paying wages to someone who works for him. Alternate translation: "God has given my due" or "God has rewarded me" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Translators may also add a footnote that says: "The name Issachar means 'there is a reward.'"

Genesis 30:19

"Leah became pregnant again"

"gave birth to a sixth son for Jacob"

Genesis 30:20

Translators may also add a footnote that says: "The name Zebulun means 'honor.'"

Genesis 30:21

This is the name of Leah's daughter. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 30:22

The phrase "call to mind" means to remember. This does not mean God forgot about Rachel. It means he considered her request. Alternate translation: "God considered Rachel and granted to her what she wanted" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

Genesis 30:23

God causing Rachel to no longer feel ashamed is spoken of as if "shame" were an object that person could take away from someone else. The abstract noun "shame" can be stated as "ashamed." Alternate translation: "God has caused me to no longer feel ashamed" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor and translationAcademy:translate/figs-abstractnouns)

Genesis 30:24

Translators may also add a footnote that says: "The name Joseph means 'may he add.'" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Rachel's first sons were through her female servant Bilhah.

Genesis 30:25

"After Rachel gave birth to Joseph"

Genesis 30:26

"so I can go"

Jacob is reminding Laban of their contract ([Genesis Gen 29:27](../29/26.md)). The abstract noun "service" can be stated as "served." Alternate translation: "you know that I have served you long enough" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-abstractnouns)

Genesis 30:27

"Laban said to Jacob"

The eyes represent seeing, and seeing represents thoughts or judgment. Alternate translation: "If I have found favor with you" or "If you are pleased with me" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

This is an idiom that means that someone is approved of by someone else. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

"please stay, because"

"I have discovered by my own spiritual and magical practices"

"because of you"

Genesis 30:28

This can be made more explicit. Alternate translation: "Tell me how much I have to pay to keep you here" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 30:29

"Jacob said to Laban"

"how well your livestock have done since I started taking care of them"

Genesis 30:30

"your herds were small before I worked for you"

"but now your wealth has greatly increased"

"Now when will I take care of my own family?" Jacob uses a question to emphasize that he wants to start providing for his own family. This question can be translated as a statement. Alternate translation: "Now I want to take care of my family!" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion)

Genesis 30:31

"What can I pay you" or "What can I give you." This can be made more explicit. Alternate translation: "What can I pay you so that you stay and work for me" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

The connecting word "But" can be used at the beginning to show that what Jacob is about to say contrasts with what he just said. Alternate translation: "But if you will do this thing for me" (See: translationAcademy:translate/writing-connectingwords)

The phrase "this thing" refers to what Jacob will propose in verse 32.

"feed and take care of your flock"

Genesis 30:32

"and remove every sheep with spots, every black sheep, and every goat with spots"

"This will be the cost of keeping me here"

Genesis 30:33

The word "integrity" means "honesty." This speaks about integrity as if it were a person who could testify for or against another person. Alternate translation: "And later you will know if I have been honest with you or not" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-personification)

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "If you find any goats without spots or any sheep that are not black, you can consider them stolen" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Genesis 30:34

"Let it be as you say" or "We will do what you have said"

Genesis 30:35

"that had stripes and spots"

"that had spots"

"every goat that had some white in it"

"all the black sheep"

Here "hand" stands for control or care. Alternate translation: "had his sons take care of them" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Genesis 30:37

These are all trees with white wood. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-unknown)

"peeled off pieces of bark so that the white wood underneath would show"

Genesis 30:38

long open containers for holding water for animals to drink

Genesis 30:39

"The animals of the flocks conceived" or "The animals mated"

"gave birth to babies with stripes and spots"

Genesis 30:40

It can be made explicit that this happened over several years. Alternate translation: "During the several years following, Jacob separated" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

"look toward"

"he set his flocks apart"

Genesis 30:41

Here the flock's "eyes" represent the sheep and emphasize what they see. Alternate translation: "so that the flock could see them" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

"in front of the sticks"

Genesis 30:42

"the weaker animals"

"So the weaker offspring belonged to Laban, while the stronger offspring belonged to Jacob." You can make this even more explicit. Alternate translation: "So the weaker offspring did not have stripes or spots and so belonged to Laban, while the stronger offspring did have stripes or spots and so belonged to Jacob" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 30:43

"Jacob"

"greatly prospered" or "became very wealthy"

Genesis 31

Genesis 31 General Notes

Special concepts in this chapter

God's blessing

When Jacob left Paddam Aram, he left very wealthy. Despite his punishment of exile from Canaan, God still blessed Jacob and his family. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/bless)

Household gods

Although a few scholars believe the possession of the household gods was a sign of inheritance, this seems unlikely. It is probable that Rachel believed these idols would bring them "good luck" and would bring them great blessing. This was sinful because they were to trust in Yahweh, who already promised to bless them. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/falsegod and translationWords:bible/kt/inherit and translationWords:bible/kt/sin)

Other possible translation difficulties in this chapter

Irony

Laban's sons complained that Jacob cheated them out of their father's possessions. It was their father who tried to cheat Jacob out of what he promised to give Jacob. Jacob treated his brother Esau in the same way. Jacob cheated Esau out of their father's blessing.

Genesis 31:1

This word is used here to mark a break in the main story line. Here the author starts to tell a new part of the story.

"Jacob heard that Laban's sons were saying"

Laban's sons were exaggerating because they were angry. Alternate translation: "Everything that Jacob has taken belonged to our father" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-hyperbole)

Genesis 31:2

These two sentences mean basically the same thing. The second explains the look that Jacob saw on Laban's face. Alternate translation: "Jacob noticed that Laban was no longer pleased with him" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-parallelism)

Genesis 31:3

"your father Isaac and your grandfather Abraham"

Genesis 31:4

"Jacob sent for Rachel and Leah and told them to meet him out in the field with the flocks"

Genesis 31:5

You can start a new sentence here. Alternate translation: "He said to them" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-sentences)

"I have noticed your father is no longer pleased with me"

Genesis 31:6

The word "you" here refers to both Rachel and Leah. It also adds emphasis. Alternate translation: "You yourselves know that I have served your father with all my strength" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-you)

Genesis 31:7

"has lied to me" or "has not treated me fairly"

"what he said he would pay me"

Possible meanings are 1) physical harm or 2) to cause Jacob to suffer in any way.

Genesis 31:8

"The animals with spots"

"the flock gave birth to"

"The animals with stripes"

Genesis 31:9

"This is how God gave your father's animals to me"

Genesis 31:10

Jacob continues his story to his wives Leah and Rachel.

"During the breeding season"

Here "flock" represents only the female goats. Alternate translation: "mating with the female goats of the flock" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

"had stripes, little spots, and big spots"

Genesis 31:11

Possible meanings are 1) God himself appeared as a man or 2) one of God's messengers appeared. Since the phrase is not well understood, it is best to simply translate it as "the angel of God," using the normal word that you use for "angel."

"And I answered"

"Yes, I am listening" or "Yes, what is it?" See how you translated this in [Genesis 22:1](../22/01.md).

Genesis 31:12

The angel of the Lord continues to talk to Jacob ([Genesis 31:10](../31/10.md)).

This is a way of saying "Look up." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

Here "flock" stands for only the female goats. Alternate translation: "that are breeding with the female goats of the flock" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

"have stripes and spots"

Genesis 31:13

Jacob poured oil on the pillar to dedicate it to God. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-symaction)

"the land where you were born"

Genesis 31:14

This does not mean they talked at the same time. It emphasizes they agreed with each other.

Rachel and Leah use a question to emphasize that there is nothing left for their father to give. Alternate translation: "There is absolutely nothing left for us to inherit from our father!" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion)

Genesis 31:15

They use a question to show their anger about how their father treats them. This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "Our father treats us like a foreign women instead of daughters!" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion and translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

This can be made more explicit. Alternate translation: "He has sold us for his own gain" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Laban completely using up the money that he should have given to his daughters is spoken of as if he were a wild beast that ate the money as if it were food. Alternate translation: "he completely used up our money" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Genesis 31:16

"belongs to us and to our children"

Here "Now" does not mean "at this moment," but is used to draw attention to the important point that follows.

"do all that God has told you"

Genesis 31:17

Jacob took all of his children. It only mentions the sons because they are important as his heirs. Alternate translation: "his children" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 31:18

"He drove all his cattle." Here "livestock" is referring to all his domesticate animals.

"and the other herd of cattle which he took ownership of when he was in Paddan Aram"

"He went to the land of Canaan, where his father Isaac lived"

Genesis 31:19

"When Laban had left to cut the wool off of his sheep"

Genesis 31:21

This refers to the Euphrates River.

"traveled toward"

"the mountains of Gilead" or "Mount Gilead"

Genesis 31:22

It was Jewish custom to count the day of departure as day one. Alternate translation: "Two days after they had left"

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "someone told Laban" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Only Jacob is mentioned because he is the leader of the family. It can be made explicit that his family went with him. Alternate translation: "that Jacob had fled with his wives and children" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 31:23

"So Laban took"

"chased after Jacob"

Laban spent seven days walking to catch up to Jacob.

"He caught up to him"

Genesis 31:24

The word "now" is used here to mark a change from the story to background information about Laban. Alternate translation: "That night God came to Laban in a dream" (See: translationAcademy:translate/writing-background)

The phrase "good nor bad" are used together to mean "anything." Alternate translation: "Do not say anything to try and stop Jacob from leaving" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-merism)

Genesis 31:25

The word "now" is used here to mark a change from the story to background information about Jacob and Laban. Alternate translation: "When Laban caught up with Jacob, Jacob had set up camp in the hill country. Then Laban and his relatives also camped in the hill country of Gilead" (See: translationAcademy:translate/writing-background)

Genesis 31:26

Laban speaks about Jacob taking his family with him back to the land of Canaan as if Jacob took them as prisoners after a battle and is forcing them to go with him. Laban is exaggerating because he is angry and is trying to make Jacob feel guilty for what he did. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-simile and translationAcademy:translate/figs-hyperbole)

Genesis 31:27

"run away in secret"

"with joy"

These instruments stand for music. Alternate translation: "and with music" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

a musical instrument with a head like a drum that can be hit and with pieces of metal around the side that sound when the instrument is shaken (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-unknown)

Genesis 31:28

Here "grandsons" would include all grandchildren whether male or female. Alternate translation: "to kiss my grandchildren" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-gendernotations)

"You have acted foolishly"

This does not mean "at this moment," but is used to draw attention to the important point that follows.

Genesis 31:29

The word "you" is plural and refers to everyone with Jacob. Alternate translation: "I have enough people with me to harm all of you" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-you)

The words "good nor bad" are used together to mean "anything." See how you translated this in [Genesis 31:24](../31/24.md). Alternate translation: "Do not say anything to try and stop Jacob from leaving" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-merism)

Genesis 31:30

This "you" is singular and refers to Jacob. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-you)

Here "house" stands for family. Alternate translation: "to be home with your father and the rest of your family" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

"my idols"

Genesis 31:31

"I left in secret because I was afraid that you would take your daughters from me by force"

Genesis 31:32

This can be stated in positive form. Alternate translation: "We will kill whoever has stolen your gods" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-litotes)

The word "our" refers to Jacob's relatives and includes Laban's relatives. All the relatives will watch to make sure everything is fair and honest. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-inclusive)

"look for whatever we have that is yours and take it"

This changes from the story to background information about Jacob. (See: translationAcademy:translate/writing-background)

Genesis 31:33

This refers to Zilpah and Bilhah.

"he did not find his idols"

Genesis 31:34

The word "now" is used here to mark a change from the story to background information about Rachel. (See: translationAcademy:translate/writing-background)

a seat placed on the back of an animal so a person can ride on it

Genesis 31:35

Calling someone "my master" is a way of honoring them.

"because I am unable to stand up in your presence"

This refers to the time of the month when a woman bleeds from her womb. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-euphemism)

Genesis 31:36

"Jacob said to Laban"

The phrases "What is my offense" and "What is my sin" mean basically the same thing. Jacob is asking Laban to tell him what he did wrong. Alternate translation: "What have I done wrong that you should pursue me like this?" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-parallelism)

Here the word "hotly" means Laban urgently chased Jacob intending to capture him. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

Genesis 31:37

"What have you found that belongs to you?"

Here the word "our" refers to Jacob's relatives and includes Laban's relatives. Alternate translation: "Lay anything you have found in front of our relatives" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-inclusive)

Here "two of us" refers to Jacob and Laban. The phrase "to judge between" means to decide which person is right in a dispute. Alternate translation: "they may judge between the two of us" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-inclusive)

Genesis 31:38

Jacob continues to speak to Laban.

"20 years" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

female sheep

This means they have not had a pregnancy end early and unexpectedly with the lamb or kid born dead.

Genesis 31:39

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "When a wild animal killed one of your animals I did not bring it to you" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

For Jacob to count Laban's dead animals as a loss from his own flock is spoken of as if it was a burden he would bear on his shoulders. Alternate translation: "Instead of counting it a loss from your flock, I counted it as a loss from my flock" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Genesis 31:40

Suffering in the hot and cold temperatures is spoken of as if the temperatures were animals that were eating Jacob. Alternate translation: "I stayed with your flocks even during hottest part of the day and the coldest part of the night" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Genesis 31:41

Jacob continues to speak to Laban.

"These last 20 years" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

"14 years" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

"changed what he said he would pay me ten times." See how you translated "my wages" in [Genesis 31:7](../31/07.md).

Genesis 31:42

Jacob is referring to the same God not to three different gods. Alternate translation: "If the God of Abraham and Isaac, my father, had not been with me"

Here the word "father" refers to his parent, Isaac.

Here the word "fears" refers to the "fear of Yahweh," which means to deeply respect him and show that respect by obeying him.

This stands for having nothing. Alternate translation: "with absolutely nothing" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

The abstract noun "oppression" can be stated as "oppressed." Alternate translation: "God has seen how hard I worked and how you oppressed me" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-abstractnouns)

Genesis 31:43

Laban uses a question to emphasize that there is nothing he can do. This rhetorical question can be translated as a statement. Alternate translation: "But, there is nothing I can do to bring my daughters and grandchildren back with me." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion)

Genesis 31:44

Here the word "witness" does not refer to a person, but it is used figuratively and refers to the covenant that Jacob and Laban are making. The covenant is spoken of as if it were a person who is there when they agree to act peacefully to one another. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-personification)

Genesis 31:45

This means that a large stone was simply set up on its end to mark the place where this important event happened.

Genesis 31:46

"stacked them on top of each other"

Eating a meal together was a part of making the covenant with one another. The full meaning of this may be made explicit. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 31:47

Translators may add a footnote that says: "The name Jegar Saha Dutha means 'heap of witness' in Laban's language." (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Translators may add a footnote that says: "The name Galeed means 'heap of witness' in Jacob's language. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 31:48

The stones do not actually bear witness as a person. Alternate translation: "This pile will be a reminder between me and you" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-personification)

Translators may add a footnote that says: "The name Galeed means 'heap of witness' in Jacob's language. See how you translated this in [Genesis 31:47](../31/47.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 31:49

Translators may add a footnote that says: "The name Mizpah means 'watchtower.'" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Here "out of sight" stands for no longer being in each other's presence. Alternate translation: "when we are no longer with each other" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Genesis 31:50

Here "us" refers to Laban and Jacob. Alternate translation: "even if no one else is there to see us"

"look" or "remember" or "pay attention to what i am about to tell you"

Genesis 31:52

These piles of stones were to act as a remembrance and a boundary marker for Jacob and Laban regarding their peace agreement. They are spoken of as if they are human witnesses. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-personification)

Genesis 31:53

Abraham is Jacob's grandfather. Nahor is Laban's grandfather. The father of Abraham and Nahor is Terah. Not all of them worshipped Yahweh.

Here the word "Fear" refers to Yahweh, who Isaac deeply respected and showed that respect by obeying him.

Genesis 31:54

Eating a meal together was part of making the covenant with one another. The full meaning of this may be made explicit. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 31:55

Verse 55 is the first verse of chapter 32 in the original Hebrew text, but the last verse of chapter 31 in most modern Bibles. We suggest that you follow the numbering of Bibles in your national language.

This means expressing a desire for positive and beneficial things to happen to someone.

Genesis 32

Genesis 32 General Notes

Special concepts in this chapter

Jacob does not trust Yahweh

Jacob does not trust in Yahweh. Instead, he fears that his brother Esau could kill him and his family. He should have known that Yahweh would continue to bless him and protect his family. He should have trusted in Yahweh's covenant faithfulness. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/bless and translationWords:bible/kt/trust and translationWords:bible/kt/covenantfaith)

Name change

In Scripture, a change in name always occurs at a highly significant point in a person's life. The return of Jacob to Canaan was a significant event in the history of the Hebrew people.

Other possible translation difficulties in this chapter

"A man wrestled with him"

Scholars are divided over the identity of the person Jacob wrestled with. It was probably an angel, but some believe he wrestled with Jesus before he came to earth. The translator will probably have difficulty trying to keep ambiguity in identifying this individual because the word "man" usually indicates a normal, living person. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 32:2

Translators may also add a footnote that says "The name Mahanaim means 'two camps.'"

Genesis 32:3

This is a mountainous area in the region of Edom. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 32:4

This has a quotation within a quotation. The direct quotation can be stated as an indirect quotation. Alternate translation: "'This is what I want you to tell my master Esau. Tell him that I have been ... have delayed my return until now.'" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotesinquotes and translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotations)

Jacob is using polite language and refers to his brother as "my master."

Jacob is using polite language and refers to himself as "your servant."

Genesis 32:5

This continues the quotation within a quotation that begins with the words "I have been" in verse 4. The direct quotation can be stated as an indirect quotation. "This is what I want you to tell my master Esau. Tell him that I have been ... Tell him that I have oxen ... in his eyes." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotesinquotes and translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotations)

When a person finds favor in the eyes of another, the second person approves of the first person. Here "eyes" are a metonym for the person seeing something, and seeing a person is a metaphor for deciding whether what that person sees is good or bad. Alternate translation: "that you may approve of me" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom and translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy and translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Genesis 32:6

"400 men" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

Genesis 32:7

This refers to the unpleasant feeling a person has when there is a threat of harm to himself or others.

distressed, troubled

Genesis 32:8

Here "camp" refers to the people. Alternate translation: "to attack the people in one camp, then the people in the other camp will escape" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Genesis 32:9

This does not refer to different gods, but to the one God they all worship. Alternate translation: "Yahweh, who is God of my grandfather Abraham and my father Isaac" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

This is a quotation within a quotation. It can be stated an indirect quotation. Alternate translation: "Yahweh, you who said that I should return to my country and to my kindred, and that you would prosper me," (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotesinquotes and translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotations)

"to your family"

"I will do good for you" or "I will treat you well"

Genesis 32:10

The abstract nouns "faithfulness" and "trustworthiness" can be stated as "faithful" and "loyal." Alternate translation: "I do not deserve for you to remain faithful to your covenant or for you to be loyal to me, your servant" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

This is a polite way of saying "me."

Here the phrase "I have become" is an idiom meaning what he now possesses. Alternate translation: "and now I have enough people, flocks, and possessions with me to make two camps" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

Genesis 32:11

"save me"

Here the word "hand" refers to power. The two phrases mean basically the same thing. The second clarifies that the brother whom Jacob intended was Esau. Alternate translation: "from the power of my brother, Esau" or "from my brother, Esau" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy and translationAcademy:translate/figs-parallelism)

"I am afraid that he will"

Genesis 32:12

This is a quotation within a quotation. It can be stated as an indirect quotation. Alternate translation: "But you said that you would certainly prosper me, and that you would make my descendants ... number" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotesinquotes and translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotations)

"do good to you" or "treat you well"

This speaks about the very large number of Jacob's descendants as if their number will be like the grains of sand on the seashore. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-simile)

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "which no one can count because of their number" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Genesis 32:14

"200" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

"20" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

Genesis 32:15

"30 ... 40 ... 10" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

"their young"

Genesis 32:16

Here "into the hand" means to give control over them. Alternate translation: "He divided them into small herds, and gave each of his servants control over one herd" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

"let each herd travel at a distance from the other herds"

Genesis 32:17

"He commanded"

This is a quotation within a quotation. It can be stated as an indirect quotation. Alternate translation: "asks you who your master is, where you are going, and who owns these animals that are ahead of you" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotesinquotes and translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotations)

"Who is your master?"

"Who owns these animals that are in front of you?"

Genesis 32:18

This is a quotation within a quotation. It can be stated as an indirect quotation. Alternate translation: "Then I want you to tell him that all of these things belong to Jacob, his servant, and he his giving them to his master, Esau. And tell him that Jacob is on the way to meet him" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotesinquotes and translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotations)

Jacob is referring to himself in a polite way as Esau's servant.

Jacob is referring to Esau is a polite way as his master.

Here "us" refers to the servant speaking and the other servants bringing herds to Esau. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-exclusive)

Genesis 32:19

"commanded the second group"

Genesis 32:20

Possible meanings are 1) "You will say also, 'Your servant Jacob'" or 2) "You will say, 'Also, Your servant Jacob.'"

"I will calm him down" or "I will make his anger go away"

"he will welcome me kindly"

Genesis 32:21

Here "gifts" stands for the servants taking the gifts. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Here "himself" emphasizes that Jacob did not go with the servants. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rpronouns)

Genesis 32:22

"his two servant wives." This means Zilpah and Bilhah.

a shallow place in a river that is easy to cross

This is the name of a river. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 32:23

"all that he had"

Genesis 32:24

"until dawn"

Genesis 32:25

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "The man injured Jacob's hip as he wrestled with him" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

the place where the upper leg bone connects to the hip

Genesis 32:26

"the sun will rise soon"

Here "bless" means to pronounce a formal blessing on someone and to cause good things to happen to that person.

This can be stated in positive form. Alternate translation: "Absolutely not! You must bless me first, then I will let you go" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-doublenegatives)

Genesis 32:28

Translators may add a footnote that says "The name Israel means 'He struggles with God.'" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Here "men" means "people" in general.

Genesis 32:29

"He said, 'Why would you ask about my name?'" This rhetorical question was meant to shock, rebuke and cause Jacob to ponder over what just happened between him and the other man he just wrestled with. Alternate translation: "Do not ask me for my name!" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion)

Genesis 32:30

Translators may add a footnote that says: "The name Peniel means 'the face of God.'" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Being "face to face" means that two people are seeing each other in person, at a close distance.

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "yet he spared my life" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Genesis 32:32

This marks a change from the story to background information about the descendants of Israel. (See: translationAcademy:translate/writing-background)

This means to the day that the author was writing this.

This refers to the muscle that connects the thigh bone to the thigh socket.

"thigh socket"

"while striking"

Genesis 33

Genesis 33 General Notes

Special concepts in this chapter

Jacob's fear

Jacob feared his brother. He showed Esau great respect and sought to protect his family from Esau's power. He did not fear and trust Yahweh. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/fear and translationWords:bible/kt/trust)

Favoritism

Jacob showed favoritism towards Rachel and Joseph. He arranged the family according to those he loved the most. Rachel and Joseph were the most protected from a potential attack by Esau. He would have rather had everyone else die, in order to spare their lives. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/favor and translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 33:1

The word "behold" here alerts us to pay attention to a surprising new part of the story.

"400 men" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

This does not mean Jacob divided the children evenly so that each woman had the same amount of children with her. Jacob divided the children so that each one went with his or her mother. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

"servant wives." This refers to Bilhah and Zilpah.

Genesis 33:3

Here "himself" emphasizes that Jacob went alone in front of the others. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rpronouns)

Here the word "bow" means to bend over to humbly express respect and honor toward someone. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-symaction)

Genesis 33:4

"meet Jacob"

This can be translated as a new sentence. Alternate translation: "Esau put his arms around Jacob, hugged him, and kissed him"

This can be translated more explicitly. Alternate translation: "Then Esau and Jacob cried because they were happy to see each other again" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 33:5

"he saw the women and children who were with Jacob"

The phrase "your servant" is a polite way for Jacob to refer to himself. Alternate translation: "These are the children God has kindly given me, your servant" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-123person)

Genesis 33:6

"servant wives." This refers to Bilhah and Zilpah.

This is a sign of humility and respect before another person. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-symaction)

Genesis 33:8

The phrase "all these groups" refers to the groups of servants that Jacob sent to give gifts to Esau. Alternate translation: "Why did you send all of those different groups to meet me?"

The phrase "find favor" is an idiom which means to be approved of by someone. Also, sight represents judgment or evaluation. Alternate translation: "So that you, my master, would be pleased with me" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom and translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

The phrase "my master" is a polite way of referring to Esau. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-123person)

Genesis 33:9

The word "animals" or "property" is understood. Alternate translation: "I have enough animals" or "I have enough property" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-ellipsis)

Genesis 33:10

The phrase "found favor" is an idiom which means to be approved of by someone. Here "eyes" are a metonym for sight, and sight is a metaphor representing his evaluation. Alternate translation: "if you are pleased with me" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom and translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy and translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Here "hand" refers to Jacob. Alternate translation: "this gift that I am giving to you" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

This can be translated as a new sentence: "my hand. For certainly"

The meaning of this simile is unclear. Possible meanings are 1) Jacob is happy that Esau has forgiven him like God has forgiven him or 2) Jacob is amazed to see his brother again like he was amazed to see God or 3) Jacob is humbled to be in Esau's presence like he was humbled to be in God's presence. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-simile)

Here "face" stands for Esau. It may be best to translate as "face" because of the importance of the word "face" here with "face of God" and "face to face" in [Genesis 32:30](../32/30.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

Genesis 33:11

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "that my servants brought to you" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

"God has treated me very well" or "God has blessed me very much"

It was customary to refuse a gift first, but then to accept the gift before the giver was offended.

Genesis 33:13

This is a polite and formal way of referring to Esau. Alternate translation: "You, my master, know" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-123person)

The meaning can be stated more explicitly. Alternate translation: "the children are too young to travel fast" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "If we force them to go too fast even for one day" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Genesis 33:14

This is a polite and formal way of Jacob referring to himself. Alternate translation: "My lord, I am your servant. Please go ahead of me" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-123person)

"at the speed the animals I am looking after can go"

This is a mountainous area in the region of Edom. See how you translated this in [Genesis 32:3](../32/03.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 33:15

Jacob uses a question to emphasize that Esau does not need to leave men. Alternate translation: "Do not do that!" or "You do not need to do that!" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion)

This is a polite and formal way of referring to Esau. Alternate translation: "you, my lord" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-123person)

Genesis 33:17

Translators may also add a footnote that says, "The name Succoth means 'shelters.'" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

It is implied that the house is also for his family. Alternate translation: "built a house for himself and his family" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

"for the animals he looked after"

Genesis 33:18

This starts a new part of the story. The author describes what Jacob did after he rested in Succoth.

"After Jacob left Paddan Aram"

This only mentions Jacob because he is the leader of the family. It is implied that his family was with him. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

"He set up his camp near"

Genesis 33:19

"piece of land"

This is the name of a man. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Shechem is the name of a city and the name of a man.

"100" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

Genesis 33:20

Translators may add a footnote that says: "The name El Elohe Israel means 'God, the God of Israel.'" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 34

Genesis 34 General Notes

Special concepts in this chapter

Israel

Jacob's name was changed to Israel. It is his descendants who inherited the promised blessings given to him and to Isaac and Abraham. This is the first time his descendants are collectively referred to as the people group Israel. The people group Israel is identified through the covenant of circumcision. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/inherit, translationWords:bible/kt/promise, translationWords:bible/kt/bless and translationWords:bible/kt/covenant and translationWords:bible/kt/circumcise)

Other possible translation difficulties in this chapter

Implicit information

Jacob's reacted to the rape of Dinah with indifference. This is possibly because she was not a daughter of Rachel. His reaction was both unwise and improper. This action brought shame on the whole family. Therefore, Jacob's sons corrected this wrong and plotted against Hamor and Shechem.

Shechem raped Dinah, but then he said he loved her. By raping her, he ensured that no one else would want to marry her. This is not love. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/wise and translationWords:bible/kt/love and translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 34:1

Here this word is used to mark a new part of the story.

This is the name of Leah's daughter. See how you translated this name in [Genesis 30:21](../30/21.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 34:2

This is the name of a people group. See how you translated the similar word "Hivites" in [Genesis 10:17](../10/17.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

This is referring to Hamor not Shechem. Also, "prince" here does not mean son of a king. It means Hamor was the leader of the people in that area.

Possible meanings are 1) "took" and "lay with" are two separate actions. Alternate translation: "he grabbed her and had sexual relations with her" or 2) "took" and "lay with" are a hendiadys, two words used to describe one action, Alternate translation: "raped her" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-hendiadys)

This is a polite way of speaking of sexual relations. You may have to use other words in your translation. Alternate translation: "had sexual relations with her" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-euphemism)

Genesis 34:3

"He was very attracted to her." This speaks about Shechem loving Dinah and wanting to be with her as if something were forcing him to come to Dinah. This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "He wanted very much to be with Dinah" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor and translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

He tried to convince her that he loved her and that he wanted her to love him also.

Genesis 34:5

"Now" is used here to mark a change from the story to background information about Jacob. (See: translationAcademy:translate/writing-background)

The word "he" refers to Shechem.

This means that Shechem had greatly dishonored and disgraced Dinah by forcing her to sleep with him.

This is a way of saying that Jacob did not say or do anything about the matter. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

Genesis 34:6

"Hamor ... went to meet Jacob"

Genesis 34:7

"The men were very insulted" or "They were shocked"

Here the word "Israel" refers to every member of Jacob's family. Israel as a people group was disgraced. Alternate translation: "he had humiliated the family of Israel" or "he had brought shame on the people of Israel" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

"having sexual relations with Jacob's daughter"

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "for he should not have done such a terrible thing" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Genesis 34:8

"Hamor spoke with Jacob and his sons"

Here the word "love" refers to romantic love between a man and a woman. Alternate translation: "loves her and wants to marry her"

In some cultures, the parents decide whom their children will marry.

Genesis 34:9

To intermarry is to marry a member of a different racial, social, religious or tribal group. Alternate translation: "Allow marriages between your people and ours"

Genesis 34:10

"the land will be available to you"

Genesis 34:11

"Shechem said to Dinah's father Jacob"

The phrase "find favor" is an idiom which means to be approved of by someone. Also, the eyes represent seeing, and seeing represents thoughts or judgment. Alternate translation: "If you will approve of me, then I will give you whatever you ask" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom and translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Genesis 34:12

In some cultures, it is customary for a man to give money, property, cattle, and other gifts to the bride's family at the time of marriage.

Genesis 34:13

The abstract noun "deceit" can be stated as the verb "lied." Alternate translation: "But the sons of Jacob lied to Shechem and Hamor when they answered them" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-abstractnouns)

This means that Shechem had greatly dishonored and disgraced Dinah by forcing her to sleep with him. See how you translated "defiled" in [Genesis 34:5](../34/05.md).

Genesis 34:14

"Jacob's sons said to Shechem and Hamor"

"We cannot agree to give Dinah in marriage"

"for that would cause us shame." Here "us" refers to Jacob's sons and all the people of Israel. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-exclusive)

Genesis 34:16

This means they will allow a person from Jacob's family to marry a person who lives in Hamor's land.

Genesis 34:18

"Hamor and his son Shechem agreed with what Jacob's sons said"

Genesis 34:19

"to become circumcised"

"Jacob's daughter Dinah"

This can be translated as a new sentence. It can be made explicit that Shechem knew the other men would agree to be circumcised because they greatly respected him. Alternate translation: "Shechem knew all the men in his father's household would agree with him because he was the most honored among them" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 34:20

It was common for leaders to meet at the city gate to make official decisions.

Genesis 34:21

"Jacob, his sons, and the people of Israel"

Here "us" includes Hamor, his son and all the people they spoke with at the city gate. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-inclusive)

"let them live and trade in the land"

Shechem uses the word "really" to add emphasis to his statement. "because, certainly, the land is large enough for them" or "because, indeed, there is plenty of land for them"

This refers to marriages between the women of one group and the men of the other group. See how you translated similar phrases in [Genesis 34:9](../34/09.md).

Genesis 34:22

Hamor and Shechem his son continue to talk to the city elders.

"Only if every man among us is circumcised, as the men of Israel are circumcised, will they agree to live among us and unite with us as one people"

Genesis 34:23

Shechem uses a question to emphasize that Jacob's livestock and property will belong to the people of Shechem. This can be translated as a statement. Alternate translation: "All of their animals and property will be ours." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion)

Genesis 34:24

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "So Hamor and Shechem had someone circumcise all the men" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Genesis 34:25

"third" is the ordinal number for three. It can be stated without the ordinal number. Alternate translation: "After two days" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-ordinal)

"when the men of the city were still in pain"

"took their swords"

Here "city" stands for the people. Alternate translation: "they attacked the people of the city" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

This can be translated as a new sentence. "security. Simeon and Levi killed all the men of the city"

Genesis 34:27

"the dead bodies of Hamor, Shechem, and their men"

"stole everything in the city that was valuable"

Shechem alone had defiled Dinah, but Jacob's sons considered Shechem's entire family and everyone in the city responsible for this act.

This means that Shechem had greatly dishonored and disgraced Dinah by forcing her to sleep with him. See how you translated "defiled" in [Genesis 34:5](../34/05.md).

Genesis 34:28

"Jacob's sons took the people's flocks"

Genesis 34:29

"all their possessions and money"

"They captured all their children and wives"

Genesis 34:30

Causing someone to experience trouble is spoken of as if trouble were an object that is brought and placed on a person. Alternate translation: "caused great problems for me" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Causing the people in the surrounding areas to hate Jacob is spoken of as if Jacob's sons made him smell bad physically. This can be translated as a new sentence. Alternate translation: "You have made me repulsive to the people who live in the land" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Here the words "I" and "me" refer to all of Jacob's household. Jacob only says "I" or "me" since he is the leader. Alternate translation: "My household is small ... against us and attack us, then they will destroy all of us" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

"form an army and attack me" or "form an army and attack us"

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "they will destroy me" or "they will destroy us" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Genesis 34:31

Simeon and Levi use a question to emphasize that Shechem did what was wrong and deserved to die. Alternate translation: "Shechem should not have treated our sister as if she were a prostitute!" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion)

Genesis 35

Genesis 35 General Notes

Special concepts in this chapter

Name change

In Scripture, a change in name always occurs at a highly significant point in a person's life. The return of Jacob to Canaan was a significant event in the history of the Hebrew people.

Covenant

The covenant God made with Abraham is repeated here. It indicates that all of Jacob's descendants will inherit the promises of this covenant. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/covenant and translationWords:bible/kt/inherit and translationWords:bible/kt/promise)

Genesis 35:1

The phrase "go up" is used because Bethel is higher in elevation than Shechem.

God speaks about himself in the third person. Alternate translation: "Build an altar there to me, your God" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-123person)

Genesis 35:2

"said to his family"

"Throw away your idols" or "Get rid of your false gods"

This was the custom of cleansing oneself morally and physically before going to worship God.

Putting on a new clothes was a sign that they had made themselves clean before approaching God. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-symaction)

Genesis 35:3

"in the time of my distress" or "when I was in trouble"

Genesis 35:4

"so everyone in Jacob's household gave" or "so all of his family and servants gave"

Here "in their hand" stands for what they own. Alternate translation: "that were in their possession" or "that they had" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

"their earrings." Possible meanings are 1) the gold in the earrings could have been used to make more idols or 2) they took these earrings from the city of Shechem after they attacked it and killed all the people. The earrings would have reminded them of their sin.

Genesis 35:5

God causing the people of the cities to be afraid of Jacob and his family is spoken of as if panic were an object that fell on the cities. The abstract noun "panic" can be stated as "afraid." Alternate translation: "God made the people in the surrounding cities afraid of Jacob and those with him" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor and translationAcademy:translate/figs-abstractnouns)

Here "cities" stands for the people who live in the cities. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

It is implied that no one attacked anyone in Jacob's family. But two of the sons, Simeon and Levi had attacked the Canaanites relatives of Shechem after he seized and slept with Jacob's daughter. Jacob was afraid they would seek revenge in [Genesis 34:30](../34/30.md). Alternate translation: "Jacob's family" or "Jacob's household" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 35:6

This is the name of a city. See how you translated this in [Genesis 28:19](../28/19.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 35:7

Translators may add a footnote that says: "The name El Bethel means 'God of Bethel.'" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

"there God made himself known to Jacob"

Genesis 35:8

This is the name of a woman. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

A nurse is a woman who takes care of another woman's child. The nurse was highly honored and important to the family.

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "They buried her down from Bethel" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

The phrase "down from" is used because they buried her in a place that was lower in elevation than Bethel.

Translators may add a footnote that says: "The name Allon Bakuth means 'Oak tree where there is weeping.'" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 35:9

It can be made explicit that they were in Bethel. Alternate translation: "After Jacob left Paddan Aram, and while he was in Bethel" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Here "bless" means to pronounce a formal blessing on someone and to cause good things to happen to that person.

Genesis 35:10

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "but your name will no longer be Jacob" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Genesis 35:11

"God said to Jacob"

God told Jacob to produce children so that there would be many of them. The word "multiply" explains how he was to be "fruitful." See how you translated this in [Genesis 1:22](../01/22.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-doublet and translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

Here "nation" and "nations" refer to Jacob's descendants who will establish these nations. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Genesis 35:13

Here "went up" is used because where God dwells is typically thought of as being up or above the world. Alternate translation: "God left him"

Genesis 35:14

This is a memorial pillar which was simply a large stone or boulder set up on its end.

This is a sign that he is dedicating the pillar to God. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-symaction)

Genesis 35:15

Translators may also add a footnote that says "The name Bethel means 'house of God.'"

Genesis 35:16

This is another name for the town of Bethlehem.

"She was having a very difficult time giving birth to the child"

Genesis 35:17

"When the labor pain was at its worst"

a person who helps a woman when she is giving birth to a child

Genesis 35:18

A "dying breath" is a person's last breath before he or she dies. Alternate translation: "Just before she died, as she was taking her last breath" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

Translator may add a footnote that says "The name Ben-Oni means 'son of my sorrow.'" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Translator may add a footnote that says "The name Benjamin means 'son of the right hand.'" The phrase "right hand" indicates a place of special favor.

Genesis 35:19

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "they buried her" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

"alongside the road"

Genesis 35:20

"It marks Rachel's grave still to this day"

"up to the present time." This means to the time that the author was writing this.

Genesis 35:21

It is implied that Israel's family and servants are with him. The full meaning of this information can be made explicit. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 35:22

This is a euphemism. Alternate translation: "had sexual relations with" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-euphemism)

This is the name of Rachel's female servant. See how you translated this name in [Genesis 29:29](../29/29.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

This sentence begins a new paragraph, which continues into the following verses.

"12 sons" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

Genesis 35:25

This is the name of Rachel's female servant. See how you translated this name in [Genesis 29:29](../29/29.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 35:26

This is the name of Leah's female servant. See how you translated this name in [Genesis 29:24](../29/24.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

It is implied that this does not include Benjamin who was born in the land of Canaan near Bethlehem. It only mentions Paddan Aram since that is where most of them were born. The full meaning of this can be made explicit. Alternate translation: "who were born to him in Paddan Aram, except Benjamin who was born in the land of Canaan" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 35:27

Here "came" can be stated as "went." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-go)

This was another name for the city of Hebron. It may have been named after Mamre, the friend of Abraham who lived there. See how you translated this in [Genesis 13:18](../13/18.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

This is the name of a city. See how you translated this in [Genesis 23:2](../23/02.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 35:28

"180 years" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

Genesis 35:29

"Isaac took his last breath and died." The phrases "breathed his last" and "died" mean basically the same thing. See how you translated a similar phrase in [Genesis 25:8](../25/08.md). Alternate translation: "Isaac died" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-doublet)

This is a polite way of saying a person died. See how you translated this in [Genesis 25:8](../25/08.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-euphemism)

This means that after Isaac died, his soul went to the same place as his relatives who died before him. This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "he joined his family members who had already died" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom and translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

The phrases "old man" and "full of days" mean basically the same thing. They emphasize that Isaac lived a very long time. Alternate translation: "after he had lived a very long time and was very old" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-doublet)

Genesis 36

Genesis 36 General Notes

Special concepts in this chapter

Esau's descendants

Esau's descendants became known as the Edomite people group. They also become a great nation. This nation is prominent in the rest of the Old Testament. God graciously blessed Esau and he had many descendants. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/grace and translationWords:bible/kt/bless)

Genesis 36:1

"These are the descendants of Esau, who is also called Edom." This sentence introduces the account of Esau's descendants in Genesis 36:1-8. Alternate translation: "This is an account of the descendants of Esau, who is also called Edom" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 36:2

These are names of Esau's wives. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

"Elon the descendant of Heth" or "Elon a descendant of Heth." This is the name of a man. See how you translate this in [Genesis 26:34](../26/34.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

These are names of men. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

This refers to a larger group of people. See how you translated it in [Genesis 10:17](../10/17.md).

Genesis 36:3

a man's name (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

This is the name of one of Esau's wives. See how you translated this in [Genesis 26:34](../26/34.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

This is the name of one of Ishmael's sons. See how you translated this in [Genesis 28:9](../28/09.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 36:4

These are names of Esau's wives. See how you translated these in [Genesis 36:2-3](./02.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

These are names of Esau's sons. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 36:5

These are names of Esau's wives. See how you translated these in [Genesis 36:2](./02.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

These are names of Esau's sons. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 36:6

This refers to all of the things that he had accumulated while living in the land of Canaan. Alternate translation: "which he had accumulated while living in the land of Canaan" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

This means to moved to another place and live there. Alternate translation: "went to live in another land" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

Genesis 36:7

"Esau's and Jacob's possessions"

The land was not large enough to support all of the livestock that Jacob and Esau owned. Alternate translation: "was not big enough to support all of their livestock" or "was not big enough for both Esau's flocks and Jacob's flocks" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

The word "settled" means to move somewhere and live there. Alternate translation: "where they had moved to" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

Genesis 36:9

This sentence introduces the account of Esau's descendants in Genesis 36:9-43. Alternate translation: "This is an account of the descendants of Esau" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

This means that they lived in the hill country of Seir. The full meaning of this may be made explicit. Alternate translation: "who lived in the hill country of Seir" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 36:10

These are names of Esau's sons. See how you translated these names in [Genesis 36:4](../36/04.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

These are names of Esau's wives. See how you translated these names in [Genesis 36:2-3](./02.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 36:11

These are names of the sons of Eliphaz. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 36:12

a son of Eliphaz (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

This is the name of Eliphaz's concubine. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 36:13

This is the name of a son of Esau. See how you translated this name in [Genesis 36:4](./04.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

These are names of Reuel's sons. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

This is the name of a wife of Esau. See how you translated this in [Genesis 36:3](./03.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 36:14

This is the name of a wife of Esau. See how you translated these in [Genesis 36:2](./02.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

These are the names of men. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

These are names of Esau's sons. See how you translated these names in [Genesis 36:5](./05.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 36:15

This is the name of one of Esau's sons. See how you translated his name in [Genesis 36:4](../36/04.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

These are names of Eliphaz's sons. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 36:16

These are names of Eliphaz's sons. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

This is the name of one of Esau's wives. See how you translated her name in [Genesis 36:2](./02.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 36:17

This is the name of a son of Esau. See how you translated this name in [Genesis 36:4](./04.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

These are the names of Reuel's sons. See how you translated these names in [Genesis 36:13](../36/13.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

This means that they lived in the land of Edom. Alternate translation: "who lived in the land of Edom" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

This is the name of a wife of Esau. See how you translated these names in [Genesis 36:3](./03.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 36:18

This is the name of a wife of Esau. See how you translated this name in [Genesis 36:2](./02.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

These are the names of Esau's sons. See how you translated these names in [Genesis 36:5](./05.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

This the name of a man. See how you translated this name in [Genesis 36:2](../36/02.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 36:20

The word "Seir" is the name of a man and of a country.

The word "Horite" refers to a people group. See how you translated it in [Genesis 14:6](../14/06.md).

"who lived in the land of Seir, which is also called Edom"

These are names of men. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 36:21

These are names of men. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 36:22

These are names of men. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

This is the name of a woman. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 36:23

This is the name of man. See how you translated this name in [Genesis 36:20](../36/20.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

These are names of men. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 36:24

This is the name of a man. See how you translated this name in [Genesis 36:20](../36/20.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

These are names of men. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 36:25

These are names of men. See how you translated "Anah" in [Genesis 36:20](./20.md).

This is the name of a woman. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 36:26

These are names of men. See how you translated "Dishon" in [Genesis 36:21](./21.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 36:27

These are names of men. See how you translated "Ezer" in [Genesis 36:20-21](./20.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 36:28

These are names of men. See how you translated "Dishan" in [Genesis 36:21](./21.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 36:29

This is the name of a people group. See how you translated this in [Genesis 14:6](../14/06.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

These are the names of men. See how you translated these names in [Genesis 36:20](./20.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 36:30

These are the names of men. See how you translated these names in [Genesis 36:21](./21.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

This means that they lived in the land of Seir. Alternate translation: "of those who lived in the land of Seir" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 36:32

These are names of men. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

This means that this was the city where he lived. Alternate translation: "the name of the city where he lived" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

This is the name of a place. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 36:33

These are names of men. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

This is the name of a place. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 36:34

This is the name of a man. See how you translated this name in [Genesis 36:33](../36/33.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

This is the name of a man. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

This means that Husham lived in the land of the Temanites. Alternate translation: "Husham who lived in the land of the Temanites" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

descendants of a man named Teman (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 36:35

These are names of men. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

This means that this was the city where he lived. Alternate translation: "The name of the city where he lived" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

These are names of places. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 36:36

These are names of men. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

"Samlah from Masrekah" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

These are names of places. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 36:37

This is the name of a man. See how you translated this name in [Genesis 36:36](../36/36.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Shaul lived in Rehoboth. Rehoboth was by the Euphrates river. This information may be stated clearly. Alternate translation: "then Shaul reigned in his place. He was from Rehoboth which is by the Euphrates River" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

This is the name of a man. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

This is the name of a place. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 36:38

These are names of men. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 36:39

These are names of men. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

This means that this was the city where he lived. Alternate translation: "The name of the city where he lived" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

These are names of places. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

This is the name of a woman. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

"she was the daughter of Matred, and the granddaughter of Me Zahab"

Genesis 36:40

"the leaders of the clans"

The clans and the regions were named after the heads of the clans. Alternate translation: "the names of their clans and the regions where they lived were named after them. These are their names" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

These are names of people groups. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 36:41

These are names of people groups. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 36:42

These are names of people groups. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 36:43

These are names of people groups. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

"their dwelling places" or "the places they lived"

This list is said "to be" Esau, which means that it is the whole list of his descendants. Alternate translation: "This is the list of the descendants of Esau" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Genesis 37

Genesis 37 General Notes

Structure and formatting

This chapter begins to record the account of Jacob's sons. The rest of the book of Genesis focuses on Jacob's sons, especially Joseph. This chapter also references Jacob as "Israel" beginning in this chapter.

Special concepts in this chapter

Favoritism

Jacob's favoritism became a great problem for his sons. They are always jealous of Joseph because he is the favorite son. The beautiful garment Jacob gave to Joseph greatly strained the relationship between Joseph and his brothers. Joseph dreams he will rule all of his brothers, even though he is not the oldest son. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/favor)

God's power

The account of Joseph focuses on the power of God. God is able to protect his people despite the evil actions of some. He also is able to continue to bless them despite their circumstances. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/peopleofgod and translationWords:bible/kt/bless)

Genesis 37:1

"in the land of Canaan where his father had lived"

Genesis 37:2

This sentence introduces the account of Jacob's children in Genesis 37:1-50:26. Here "Jacob" refers to his whole family. Alternate translation: "This is the account of Jacob's family" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

"17 years old" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

This is the name of Rachel's female servant. See how you translated this name in [Genesis 29:29](../29/29.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

This is the name of Leah's female servant. See how you translated this name in [Genesis 29:24](../29/24.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

These women were servants of Leah and Rachel whom they had given to Jacob to produce children.

"a bad report about his brothers"

Genesis 37:3

This word is used here to mark a change from the story to background information about Israel and Joseph. (See: translationAcademy:translate/writing-background)

This refers to brotherly love or love for a friend or family member. This is natural human love between friends or relatives.

This means that Joseph was born when Israel was an old man. Alternate translation: "who was born when Israel was an old man" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

"Israel made Joseph"

"a beautiful robe"

Genesis 37:4

"could not speak in a courteous manner to him"

Genesis 37:5

This is a summary of the events that will happen in 37:6-11.

"And Joseph's brothers hated him even more than they hated him before"

Genesis 37:6

"Please listen to this dream that I had"

Genesis 37:7

Joseph tells his brothers about his dream.

The word "behold" here alerts us to pay attention to the surprising information that follows.

The word "we" refers to Joseph and includes all of his brothers. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-inclusive)

When grain is reaped it is tied into bundles and stacked until it is time to separate the grain from the straw.

Here the word "behold" here shows that Joseph was surprised by what he saw.

Here the bundles of grain are standing and kneeling as if they were people. These bundle represent Joseph and his brothers. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-personification)

Genesis 37:8

Both of these phrases mean basically the same thing. Joseph's brothers are using questions to mock Joseph. They can be written as statements. Alternate translation: "You will never be our king, and we will never bow down to you!" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-parallelism and translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion)

The word "us" refers to Joseph's brothers but not Joseph. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-exclusive)

"because of his dreams and what he said"

Genesis 37:9

"Joseph had another dream"

"11 stars" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

Genesis 37:10

"Israel scolded him, saying"

Israel uses questions to correct Joseph. This can be written as statements. Alternate translation: "This dream you had is not real. Your mother, brothers, and I will not bow down before you!" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion)

Genesis 37:11

This means being angry because someone else is successful or more popular.

The means that he kept thinking about the meaning of Joseph's dream. Alternate translation: "kept thinking about what the dream might mean" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

Genesis 37:13

Israel uses a question to begin a conversation. This can be written as a statement. Alternate translation: "You brothers are tending the flock in Shechem." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion)

Here it is implied that Israel is asking Joseph to prepare himself to leave and go see his brothers. Alternate translation: "Get ready" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

He is ready to leave. "I am ready to go" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 37:14

"Israel said to Joseph"

Israel wants Joseph to come back and tell him about how his brother and flocks are doing. Alternate translation: "come tell me what you find out" or "give me a report" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

"from the Valley"

Genesis 37:15

"A certain man found Joseph wandering in a field"

This marks the beginning of another event in the larger story. It may involve different people than the previous events. Your language may have a way of doing this.

"What are you looking for?"

Genesis 37:16

"Please tell me where"

"shepherding their flock"

Genesis 37:17

This is the name of a place that is about 22 kilometers from Shechem. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 37:18

"Joseph's brothers saw him while he was far away"

"they made plans to kill him"

Genesis 37:19

"here comes the one who has the dreams"

Genesis 37:20

This wording shows that the brothers acted upon their plans. Alternate translation: "So now" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

"dangerous animal" or "ferocious animal"

to eagerly have eaten

His brothers planned to kill him, therefore it is ironic that they would speak of his dream coming true, since he would be dead. Alternate translation: "That way we will make sure his dreams do not come true" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-irony)

Genesis 37:21

"heard what they were saying"

The phrase "their hand" refers to the brothers' plan to kill him. Alternate translation: "from them" or "from their plans" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

The phrase "take his life" is a euphemism for killing someone. Alternate translation: "Let us not kill Joseph" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-euphemism)

Genesis 37:22

The negation can be placed on the verb. Also, "shedding blood" is a euphemism for killing someone. Alternate translation: "Do not spill any blood" or "Do not kill him" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-litotes and translationAcademy:translate/figs-euphemism)

This can be translated as a new sentence: "Rueben said this so that he might rescue Joseph"

The phrase "their hand" refers to the brothers' plan to kill him. Alternate translation: "from them" or "from their plans" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

"and return him"

Genesis 37:23

This phrase is used here to mark an important event in the story. If your language has a way for doing this, you could consider using it here.

"they tore his beautiful garment off of him"

"beautiful robe." See how you translated this in [Genesis 37:3](../37/03.md).

Genesis 37:25

"Bread" represents food in general. Alternate translation: "They sat down to eat food" or "Joseph's brothers sat down to eat" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

Here looking up is spoken of as if a person literally lifted up his eyes. Also, the word "behold" is used here to draw the reader's attention to what the men saw. Alternate translation: "They looked up and they suddenly saw a caravan" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

carrying

seasonings

an oily substance with a sweet smell used for healing and protecting skin. "medicine"

"bringing them down to Egypt." This can be made more explicit. Alternate translation: "bringing them down to Egypt to sell them" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 37:26

This can be written as a statement. Alternate translation: "We do not gain a profit by killing our brother and covering up his blood" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion)

This is a figure of speech referring to hiding Joseph's death. Alternate translation: "hide his murder" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Genesis 37:27

"to these men who are descendants of Ishmael"

This means not to harm or injure him. Alternate translation: "not hurt him" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

The word "flesh" is a metonym that stands for a relative. Alternate translation: "he is our blood relative" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

"Judah's brothers listened to him" or "Judah's brothers agreed with him"

Genesis 37:28

Both names refer to the same group of traders that Joseph's brothers meet.

"for the price of 20 pieces of silver" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

"took Joseph to Egypt"

Genesis 37:29

"Reuben returned to the pit, and was surprised to see that Joseph was not there." The word "behold" here shows that Reuben was surprised to find out Joseph was gone.

This is an act of deep distress and grief. This can be written more clearly. Alternate translation: "He was so grieved that he tore his clothes" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 37:30

Reuben uses questions for emphasis the problem that Joseph was missing. These can be written as statements. Alternate translation: "The boy is gone! I cannot go back home now!" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion)

Genesis 37:31

This refers to the beautiful garment that his father made for him.

"the goat's blood"

Genesis 37:32

"they brought the garment"

Genesis 37:33

"has eaten him"

Jacob thinks that a wild animal has torn Joseph's body apart. Alternate translation: "It has certainly torn Joseph to pieces" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Genesis 37:34

This is an act of deep distress and grief. This can be written more clearly. Alternate translation: "Jacob was so grieved that he tore his garments" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Here "loins" refers to the middle part of the body or the waist. Alternate translation: "put on sackcloth" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 37:35

Here the childrens' coming to their father is spoke of as "rising up." Alternate translation: "came to him" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "but he would not let them comfort him" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

The means that he be mourning from now until when he dies. Alternate translation: "Indeed when I die and go down to Sheol I will still be mourning" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 37:36

"The Midianites sold Joseph"

"the leader of the soldiers who guarded the king"

Genesis 38

Genesis 38 General Notes

Structure and formatting

This chapter focuses on Jacob's son Judah.

Special concepts in this chapter

"Spilling his seed"

Onan was to provide for his brother's widow and give her an heir. This phrase indicates that he used Tamar to fulfill his own sexual desires rather than help her. This was sinful. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-euphemism and translationWords:bible/kt/sin)

God preserves Judah's line

The Canaanite woman, Tamar, deceived her father-in-law, Judah, into having sexual relations with her. If it had not been for this act, Judah would not have any descendants to carry on his family line. Although her actions were wrong, God used them to protect his people. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/peopleofgod)

Genesis 38:1

This introduces a new part of the story that focuses on Judah. (See: translationAcademy:translate/writing-newevent)

Hirah is the name of a man who lived in the village of Adullam. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 38:2

Shua is a Canaanite woman who married Judah. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

This is a euphemism. Alternate translation: "he had sexual relations with her" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-euphemism)

Genesis 38:3

"Judah's wife became pregnant"

This can be written in active form. Alternate translation: "His father named him Er" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Judah's son (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 38:4

"named him"

Judah's son (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 38:5

Judah's son (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

This is the name of a place. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 38:6

This is the name of one of Judah's sons. See how you translated this name in [Genesis 38:3](../38/03.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 38:7

The phrase "in the sight" refers to Yahweh seeing Er's wickedness. Alternate translation: "was wicked and Yahweh saw it" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

Yahweh killed him because he was wicked. This can be made clear. Alternate translation: "So Yahweh killed him" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 38:8

This is the name of one of Judah's sons. See how you translated this name in [Genesis 38:4](../38/04.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

This is a euphemism. Alternate translation: "Have sexual relations with your brother's wife" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-euphemism)

This refers to a custom that when the oldest brother dies before he and his wife have a son, the next oldest brother would marry and have sexual relations with the widow. When the widow gave birth to the first son, that son was considered the son of the oldest brother and he would receive the oldest brother's inheritance.

Genesis 38:9

This is a euphemism. Alternate translation: "he had sexual relations with" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-euphemism)

Genesis 38:10

The phrase "in the sight" refers to Yahweh seeing Onan's wickedness. Alternate translation: "was evil and Yahweh saw it" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

Yahweh killed him because what he did was evil. This can be made clear. Alternate translation: "So Yahweh killed him also" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 38:11

"his oldest son's wife"

This means her to live in here father's house. Alternate translation: "and live in your father's house" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Judah intends for Tamar to marry Shelah when he grows up. Alternate translation: "and when Shelah, my son, grows up, he can marry you" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

This is the name of one of Judah's sons. See how you translated this name in [Genesis 38:5](../38/05.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Judah feared that if Shelah married Tamar he would also die like his brothers did. Alternate translation: "For he feared, 'If he marries her he may also die like his brothers did" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 38:12

This is the name of a man. See how you translated this name in [Genesis 38:2](../38/02.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

"When Judah was no longer grieving, he"

"Timnah, where his men were shearing sheep"

This is the name of a place. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

"His friend Hiram, from Adullam, went with him"

"Hiram" is the name of a man, and "Adullam" is the name of a village where he lived. See how you translated this name in [Genesis 38:1](../38/01.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 38:13

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "Someone told Tamar" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

"Listen." Here the word "look" is used to get Tamar attention.

"your husband's father"

Genesis 38:14

This is the name of a place. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

"that widows wear"

a very thin material used to cover a woman's head and face

This means that she hid herself with her clothing so that people would not recognize her. Traditionally, part of women's clothing were large pieces of cloth they wrapped themselves with. Alternate translation: "wrapped herself in her clothing so that people would not recognize her" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

"along the road" or "on the way"

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "Judah had not given her to Shelah as a wife" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Genesis 38:15

The word "her" here refers to Tamar, but your reader should understand that Judah did not know that the woman he was looking at was Tamar.

Judah did not think she was a prostitute just because her face was covered but also because she was sitting in the gate. Alternate translation: "because she had covered her head and sat where prostitutes often sat" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 38:16

Tamar was sitting by the road. Alternate translation: "He went to where she was sitting by the road" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

"Come with me, please" or "Come now, please"

Genesis 38:17

"from my flock of goats"

Genesis 38:18

A "seal" is similar to a coin with a design engraved on it, used to imprint melted wax. The "cord" was put through the seal so the owner could wear it around his neck. A staff was long wooden stick that helped in walking over rough ground.

This is a euphemism. Alternate translation: "he had sexual relations with her" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-euphemism)

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "he caused her to become pregnant" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Genesis 38:19

This was a very thin material used to cover a woman's head and face. See how you translated these in [Genesis 38:14](../38/14.md).

"clothing that widows wear." See how you translated these in [Genesis 38:14](../38/14.md).

Genesis 38:20

a person who lives in the village of Adullam. See how you translated this in [Genesis 38:1](../38/01.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "take back the pledge"(See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Here "hand" emphasizes that they were in here possession. The woman's hand refers to the woman. Alternate translation: "from the woman" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

Genesis 38:21

a person who lives in the village of Adullam. See how you translated this in [Genesis 38:1](../38/01.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

"some of the men who lived there"

"prostitute who serves in the temple"

This is the name of a place. See how you translated this in [Genesis 38:14](../38/14.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 38:23

When people found out what had happened they would ridicule Judah and laugh at him. This can be made clear and stated in active form. Alternate translation: "or else people will laugh at us when they find out what happened" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit and translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Genesis 38:24

This phrase is used here to mark the beginning of a new part of the story. (See: translationAcademy:translate/writing-newevent)

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "someone told Judah" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

"Tamar, your oldest son's wife"

Here the word "it" refers to the "prostitution" that she committed. This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "it has made her pregnant" or "she is pregnant" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

"Bring her out"

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "we will burn her to death" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Genesis 38:25

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "When they brought her out" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

"her husband's father"

A "seal" is similar to a coin with a design engraved on it, used to make an impression in melted wax. The "cord" was put through the seal so the owner could wear it around his neck. A staff was long wooden stick that helped in walking over rough ground. See how you translated this in [Genesis 38:18](../38/18.md).

Genesis 38:26

This is the name of one of Judah's sons. See how you translated this name in [Genesis 38:5](../38/05.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

This is a euphemism. Alternate translation: "did not have sexual relations with her again" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-euphemism)

Genesis 38:27

This phrase is used here to mark the beginning of a new part of the story. (See: translationAcademy:translate/writing-newevent)

The word "behold" alerts us to the surprise that Tamar was carrying twins, which was previously unknown.

Genesis 38:28

This phrase "It came about" marks an important event in the story. If your language has a way for doing this, you could consider using it here.

"one of the babies put out his hand"

This is a person who helps a woman when she is giving birth to a child. See how you translated this in [Genesis 35:17](../35/17.md).

"bright red thread"

"around his wrist"

Genesis 38:29

The word "behold" here alerts us to pay attention to the surprising information that follows.

This shows the midwife's surprise to seeing the second baby come out first. Alternate translation: "So this is how you break your way out first!" or "You have burst out first!" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "she named him" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

This is the name of a boy. Translators may add a footnote that says: "The name Perez means 'breaking out.'" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 38:30

This is the name of a boy. Translators may add a footnote that says: "The name Zerah means 'scarlet or bright red.'" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 39

Genesis 39 General Notes

Special concepts in this chapter

God's power

The account of Joseph focuses on the power of God. God is able to protect his people despite the evil actions of some. He also is able to continue to bless them despite their circumstances. This is a sign of Yahweh's covenant faithfulness. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/peopleofgod, translationWords:bible/kt/bless and translationWords:bible/kt/sign and translationWords:bible/kt/covenantfaith)

Joseph's character

Genesis just recorded a period of time where Joseph's ancestors and brothers struggled with sin. Joseph's character in this chapter is upright. He chose to do what was right, even when it could cause him harm. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/sin)

Genesis 39:1

Travelling to Egypt is always considered as going "down" in contrast to going "up" to the promised land. This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "The Ishmaelites had taken Joseph to Egypt" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom and translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Genesis 39:2

This means that Yahweh helped Joseph and was always with him. Alternate translation: "Yahweh guided Joseph and helped him" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

Here the author speaks of working in the master's house as if it were living in the master's house. Only the most trusted servants were permitted to work in their master's house. AT : "he worked in the house" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Joseph was now Potiphar's slave.

Genesis 39:3

This means that the master saw how Yahweh was helping Joseph. Alternate translation: "His master saw that Yahweh was helping him" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

"Yahweh caused everything that Joseph did to prosper"

Genesis 39:4

"To find favor" means to be approved by someone. The idiom "in his sight" refers to a person's opinion. Possible meanings are 1) Alternate translation: "Potiphar was pleased with Joseph" or 2) Alternate translation: "Yahweh was pleased with Joseph" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

This means that he was Potiphar's personal servant.

"Potiphar put Joseph in charge of his household and everything that belonged to Potiphar"

When something is "put under someone's care," it means that the person is responsible for its care and safe-keeping. Alternate translation: "he had Joseph care for" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Genesis 39:5

You may need to use the words "Joseph" and "the Egyptian" before using pronouns to refer to them. "The Egyptian made Joseph manager over his house and over everything he possessed, and it came about from the time that Yahweh blessed the Egyptian's house because of Joseph"

This phrase is used here to tell the reader that these two verses are background information for the next event. (See: translationAcademy:translate/writing-background)

"Potiphar put Joseph in charge of his household and everything that belonged to him"

Here "blessed" means to cause good and beneficial things to happen to the person or thing that is being blessed.

Here the author speaks of the blessing that Yahweh gave as if it were a physical covering put over something. Alternate translation: "Yahweh blessed" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

This refers his household and his crops and livestock. The full meaning of this statement can be made explicit. Alternate translation: "Potiphar's household and all of his crops and livestock" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 39:6

When something is "put under someone's care," it means that the person is responsible for its care and safe-keeping. Alternate translation: "So Potiphar put Joseph in charge of everything that he had" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

He did not have to worry about anything in his household; he only had to make decisions about what he wanted to eat. This can be stated in positive form. Alternate translation: "Potiphar only had to think about what he wanted to eat. He did not have to worry about anything else in his house" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit and translationAcademy:translate/figs-doublenegatives)

The word "now" marks a break in the story line as the author gives background information about Joseph. (See: translationAcademy:translate/writing-background)

Both of the words have same meaning. They refer to Joseph's pleasing appearance. He was likely good-looking and strong. Alternate translation: "handsome and strong" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-doublet)

Genesis 39:7

"And so." This phrase is used here to mark a new event. (See: translationAcademy:translate/writing-newevent)

This is a euphemism. Alternate translation: "have sexual relations with me" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-euphemism)

Genesis 39:8

"Listen." Joseph uses this word to get Potiphar's wife's attention.

"my master has no concern about his household with me in charge." This can be written in positive form. Alternate translation: "my master trusts me with his household" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-doublenegatives)

When something is "put under someone's care," it means that the person is responsible for its care and safe-keeping. Alternate translation: "he has put me in charge of everything that belongs to him" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Genesis 39:9

Here the author speaks of authority as if it were greatness. Alternate translation: "I have more authority in this house than anyone else" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

This can be stated in positive form. Alternate translation: "He has given me everything except you" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-litotes)

Joseph uses a question for emphasis. This can be written as a statement. Alternate translation: "I certainly cannot do such a wicked thing and sin against God." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion)

Genesis 39:10

This means that she kept asking him to sleep with her. The full meaning of this statement can be made explicit. Alternate translation: "She kept on asking Joseph to sleep with her" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

This is a euphemism. Alternate translation: "to have sexual relations with her" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-euphemism)

"to be near her"

Genesis 39:11

"And so." This phrase is used here to mark a new event in the story. (See: translationAcademy:translate/writing-newevent)

"None of the other men who worked in the house"

Genesis 39:12

This is a euphemism. Alternate translation: "Have sexual relations with me" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-euphemism)

"and quickly ran outside" or "and quickly ran out of the house"

Genesis 39:13

"Then" The phrase "it came about" is used here to mark the next event in the story. (See: translationAcademy:translate/writing-newevent)

"had quickly ran out of the house"

Genesis 39:14

"the men who worked in her house"

"Look" or "Listen" or "Pay attention to what I am about to tell you."

Here Potiphar's wife is accusing Joseph of trying to seize her and have sexual relations with her. "He came into my room to have sexual relations with me" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-euphemism)

Genesis 39:15

"When he heard me scream, he." The phrase "it came about" is used here to mark the next event in the story. (See: translationAcademy:translate/writing-newevent)

Genesis 39:16

"Joseph's master." This refers to Potiphar.

Genesis 39:17

"She explained it like this"

The word "us" refers to Potiphar, his wife, and includes the rest of the household. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-inclusive)

"came in to make a fool of me." Here, the word "mock" is a euphemism for "to seize and to sleep with." Alternate translation: "came into where I was and tried to force me to sleep with him" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-euphemism)

Genesis 39:18

"Then." Potiphar's wife uses this phrase to mark the next event in the account she is telling him about Joseph trying to sleep with her. (See: translationAcademy:translate/writing-newevent)

"ran quickly out of the house"

Genesis 39:19

"And so." This phrase is used here to mark a new event in the story. (See: translationAcademy:translate/writing-newevent)

"Joseph's master." This refers to Potiphar. This information can be made explicit. Alternate translation: "Joseph's master, Potiphar" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

"heard his wife explain to him." The word "his" and "him" here refer to Potiphar.

"Potiphar became very angry"

Genesis 39:20

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "the place where the king put his prisoners" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

"Joseph stayed there"

Genesis 39:21

This refers to how Yahweh took care of Joseph and was kind to him. Alternate translation: "But Yahweh was kind to Joseph" or "But Yahweh took care of Joseph" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

The abstract noun "faithfulness" can be stated as "faithful" or "faithfully." Alternate translation: "was faithful to his covenant with him" or "faithfully loved him" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-abstractnouns)

This means Yahweh caused the prison warden to approve of Joseph and to treat him well. Alternate translation: "Yahweh caused the prison warden to be pleased with Joseph" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

"the prison manager" or "the man in charge of the prison"

Genesis 39:22

Here "hand" represents Joseph's power or trust. Alternate translation: "put Joseph in charge of" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

"Joseph was in charge of everything they did there"

Genesis 39:23

This refers to how Yahweh helped Joseph and guided him. Alternate translation: "because Yahweh guided Joseph" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

"Yahweh caused everything that Joseph did to prosper"

Genesis 40

Genesis 40 General Notes

Special concepts in this chapter

God's power

The account of Joseph focuses on the power of God. God is able to protect his people despite the evil actions of some. He also is able to continue to bless them despite their circumstances. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/peopleofgod and translationWords:bible/kt/bless)

Interpretation of dreams

The interpretation of dreams was important in the ancient Near East. It was seen as possible only through divine power. Yahweh gave Joseph the power to interpret dreams in order to bring himself glory and to protect Joseph and the Hebrew people. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/glory)

Genesis 40:1

This phrase is used here to mark a new event in the story. (See: translationAcademy:translate/writing-newevent)

This is the person who brought drinks to the king.

This is the person who made food for the king.

"upset their master"

Genesis 40:2

"the leading cupbearer and the leading baker"

Genesis 40:3

"He put them in the prison that was in the house that was overseen by the captain of the guard"

The king did not put them in prison but rather he commanded for them to be imprisoned. Alternate translation: "He had them put" or "He commanded his guard to put" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "This was the same prison that Joseph was in" or "This was the same prison Potiphar put Joseph in" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Genesis 40:4

"They remained in prison for a long time"

Genesis 40:6

"Joseph came to the cupbearer and the baker"

The word "behold" here shows that Joseph was surprised by what he saw. Alternate translation: "He was surprised to see that they were sad" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 40:7

This refers to the cupbearer and the baker.

"In prison in him master's house." "His master" refers to Joseph's master, the captain of the guard.

Genesis 40:8

Joseph uses a question for emphasis. This can be written as a statement. Alternate translation: "Interpretations belong to God!" or "It is God who can tell the meaning of dreams!" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion)

Joseph asks for them to tell him their dreams. Alternate translation: "Tell me the dreams, please" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-ellipsis)

Genesis 40:9

The most important person who brings drinks to the king. See how you translated this in [Genesis 40:2](../40/02.md).

"In my dream, I saw a vine in front of me!" The cupbearer uses word "behold" here to show that he was surprised by what he saw in his dream and to alert Joseph to pay attention.

Genesis 40:10

"its clusters ripened into grapes"

Genesis 40:11

This means that he squeezed the juice out of them. Alternate translation: "squeezed the juice from them" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 40:12

"Here is what the dream means"

"The three branches represent three days"

Genesis 40:13

"In three more days"

Here Joseph speaks of Pharaoh releasing the cupbearer from prison as if Pharaoh were causing him to lift up his head. Alternate translation: "will release you from prison" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

"will give you back your job"

"just as you did when"

Genesis 40:14

"please be kind to me"

Joseph means for the cupbearer to tell Pharaoh about him so that Pharaoh will release him from prison. Alternate translation: "Help me get out of this prison by telling Pharaoh about me" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 40:15

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "For indeed people took me" or "For indeed the Ishmaelites took me" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

"the land where the Hebrew people live"

"and also while I have been here in Egypt, I have done nothing for which I deserved to be put in prison"

Genesis 40:16

This refers to the leading person who made food for the king. See how this was translated in [Genesis 40:2](../40/02.md).

"I also had a dream, and in my dream,"

"there were three baskets of bread on my head!" The baker uses word "behold" here to show that he was surprised by what he saw in his dream and to alert Joseph to pay attention.

Genesis 40:17

"baked foods for Pharaoh"

Genesis 40:18

"Here is what the dream means"

"The three baskets represent three days"

Genesis 40:19

Joseph also used the phrase "will lift up your head" when he spoke to the cupbearer in [Genesis 40:13](../40/13.md). Here it has a different meaning. Possible meanings are 1) "will lift up your head to put a rope around your neck" or 2) "will lift up your head to cut it off."

Here "flesh" literally means the soft tissue on a person's body.

Genesis 40:20

"Afterward, on the third day." The phrase "it came about" is used here to mark a new event in the story. (See: translationAcademy:translate/writing-newevent)

"He had a feast"

This was the leading person who prepared and served drinks to the king. See how these were translated in [Genesis 40:2](../40/02.md).

This refers to the leading person who made food for the king. See how this was translated in [Genesis 40:2](../40/02.md).

Genesis 40:21

The chief of the cupbearer's "responsibility" refers to his job as chief of the cupbearers. Alternate translation: "He gave the chief of the cupbearers his job back" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Genesis 40:22

Pharaoh did not personally hang the baker, rather he commanded for him to be hanged. Alternate translation: "But he commanded for the chief of the bakers to be hanged" or "But he commanded his guards to hang the chief of the bakers" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

This refers to when Joseph interpreted their dreams. Alternate translation: "just as Joseph had said would happen when he interpreted the two men's dreams" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 41

Genesis 41 General Notes

Special concepts in this chapter

God's power

The account of Joseph focuses on the power of God. God is able to protect his people despite the evil actions of some. He also is able to continue to bless them despite their circumstances. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/peopleofgod and translationWords:bible/kt/bless)

Interpretation of dreams

The interpretation of dreams was important in the ancient Near East. It was seen as possible only through divine power. Yahweh gave Joseph the power to interpret dreams in order to bring himself glory and to protect Joseph and the Hebrew people. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/glory)

Joseph's character

Genesis just recorded a period of time where Joseph's ancestors and brothers struggled with sin. Joseph's character in this chapter is upright. It gained him great favor in the eyes of Pharaoh and helped to save his people. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/sinl, translationWords:bible/kt/righteous and translationWords:bible/kt/save)

Genesis 41:1

This phrase is used here to mark the beginning of a new part of the story. If your language has a way for doing this, you could consider using it here. (See: translationAcademy:translate/writing-newevent)

Two years passed after Joseph correctly interpreted the dreams of Pharaoh's cupbearer and baker, who had been in prison with Joseph.

The word "behold" here marks the beginning of another event in the larger story. Your language may have a way of doing this. Alternate translation: "He was surprised because he was standing"

"Pharaoh was standing"

Genesis 41:2

"healthy and fat"

"were eating the grass along the side of the river"

tall, thin grasses that grow in wet areas

Genesis 41:3

The word "behold" here shows that Pharaoh was again surprised by what he saw.

"sick and thin"

"beside the river" or "riverside." This is the higher ground along the edge of a river.

Genesis 41:4

"weak and skinny." See how you translated this phrase in [Genesis 41:3](../41/03.md).

"healthy and well-fed." See how you translated this phrase in [Genesis 41:2](../41/02.md).

"awakened"

Genesis 41:5

The word "second" is an ordinal number. Alternate translation: "again" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-ordinal)

The word "behold" here shows that Pharaoh was surprised by what he saw.

The heads are parts of the corn plant on which the seeds grow.

"grew up on one stem." The stalk is the thick or tall part of a plant.

"on one stock and they were healthy and beautiful"

Genesis 41:6

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "that were thin and burned because of the hot wind from the east" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Wind from the east blew in from the desert. The heat of the east wind was often very destructive.

"grew up" or "developed"

Genesis 41:7

The words "of grain" are understood. Alternate translation: "The thin heads of grain" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-ellipsis)

"ate." Pharaoh is dreaming that unhealthy corn could eat healthy corn just like a person eats food.

"healthy and good heads." See how you translated a similar phrase in [Genesis 41:5](../41/05.md).

"awakened"

The word "behold" here shows that Pharaoh was surprised by what he had seen.

"he had been dreaming"

Genesis 41:8

This phrase is used here to mark the beginning of a new part of the story. If your language has a way for doing this, you could consider using it here. (See: translationAcademy:translate/writing-newevent)

Here the word "spirit" refers to his inner being or his emotions. Alternate translation: "he was troubled in his inner being" or "he was troubled" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

It is understood that he sent servants. Alternate translation: "He sent his servants to call" or "He sent his servants to summon" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-ellipsis)

Ancient kings and rulers used magicians and wise men as advisers.

Genesis 41:9

The most important person who brings drinks to the king. See how you translated this in [Genesis 40:2](../40/02.md).

The word "Today" is used for emphasis. His "offenses" are that he should have told Pharaoh something much earlier but he did not. Alternate translation: "I just realized that I forgot to tell you something"

Genesis 41:10

The cupbearer is referring to Pharaoh in third person. This is a common way for someone with less power to speak to someone with greater power. Alternate translation: "You, Pharaoh, were angry" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-123person)

Here "his" refers to Pharaoh. Here "servants" refers to the cupbearer and the chief baker. Alternate translation: "with us, your servants" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-123person)

"put the chief baker and me in the prison where the captain of the guard was in charge." Here "house" refers to the prison.

The soldier in charge of the royal guards. See how you translated this in [Genesis 40:3](../40/03.md).

The most important person who made food for the king. See how you translated a similar phrase in [Genesis 40:2](../40/02.md).

Genesis 41:11

"One night we both had dreams"

Here "We" refers to the chief cupbearer and the chief baker. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-exclusive)

"Our dreams had different meanings"

Genesis 41:12

The chief cupbearer continues to speak to Pharaoh.

"In prison there was with the chief baker and me"

The soldier in charge of the royal guards. See how you translated this in [Genesis 40:3](../40/03.md).

"We told him our dreams and he explained their meanings to us"

Here "his" refers to the cupbearer and baker individually, not to the one interpreting the dream. Alternate translation: "He explained what was going to happen to both of us" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-123person)

Genesis 41:13

This phrase is used here to mark an important event in the story. If your language has a way for doing this, you could consider using it here.

"what he explained about the dreams is what later happened"

Here the cupbearer uses Pharaoh's title in speaking to him as a way of honoring him. Alternate translation: "You allowed me to return to my job" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-123person)

"the chief baker"

Here "he" refers to Pharaoh. And, it stands for the soldiers that Pharaoh commanded to hang the chief baker. Alternate translation: "you ordered your soldiers to hang" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-123person and translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Genesis 41:14

It is understood that Pharaoh sent servants. Alternate translation: "Pharaoh sent his servants to get Joseph" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-ellipsis)

"out of the jail" or "out of the prison"

It was common practice to shave both the facial and head hair when preparing to go before Pharaoh.

Here "came" can be stated as "went." Alternate translation: "went before Pharaoh" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-go)

Genesis 41:15

"no one can explain the meaning"

"you can explain its meaning"

Genesis 41:16

"I am not the one who can explain the meaning"

"God will answer Pharaoh favorably"

Genesis 41:17

Pharaoh uses the word "behold" to make Joseph pay attention to surprising information.

This is the higher ground along the edge of the Nile River. See how you translated a similar phrase in [Genesis 41:3](../41/03.md). Alternate translation: "beside the Nile"

Genesis 41:18

Pharaoh uses the word "Behold" to make Joseph pay attention to surprising information.

"well-fed and healthy." See how you translated this phrase in [Genesis 41:2](../41/02.md).

"were eating the grass along the side of the river." See how you translated a similar phrase in [Genesis 41:2](../41/02.md).

Genesis 41:19

Pharaoh uses the word "Behold" to make Joseph pay attention to surprising information.

"weak, and skinny." See how you translated this phrase in [Genesis 41:3](../41/03.md).

The abstract noun "undesirableness" can be translated with an adjective. Alternate translation: "such ugly cows" or "such worthless looking cows" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-abstractnouns)

Genesis 41:20

"well-fed cows." See how you translated this phrase in [Genesis 41:2](../41/02.md).

Genesis 41:21

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "no one would have been able to tell that the thin cows had eaten the fat cows" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Genesis 41:22

Pharaoh continues telling Joseph his dreams.

This begins Pharaoh's next dream after he woke up and went back to sleep. Alternate translation: "Then I dreamed again" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Pharaoh uses the word "Behold" to make Joseph pay attention to surprising information.

The words "of grain" are understood. Alternate translation: "seven heads of grain" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-ellipsis)

"grew up on one stem." The stalk is the thick or tall part of a plant. See how you translated a similar phrase in [Genesis 41:5](../41/05.md).

Genesis 41:23

dead and dried

"grew up" or "developed"

Genesis 41:24

The words "of grain" are understood. See how you translated this in [Genesis 41:7](../41/07.md). Alternate translation: "The thin heads of grain" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-ellipsis)

"ate." Pharaoh is dreaming that unhealthy corn could eat healthy corn just like a person eats food. See how you translated a similar phrase in [Genesis 41:7](../41/07.md).

"there was not a single one that could" or "none of them could"

Genesis 41:25

It is implied that the meanings are the same. Alternate translation: "Both dreams mean the same thing" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Joseph speaks to Pharaoh in the third person. This is a way of showing respect. It can be stated in the second person. Alternate translation: "God is showing you what he will soon do" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-123person)

Genesis 41:26

The words "of grain" are understood. Alternate translation: "seven good heads of grain" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-ellipsis)

Genesis 41:27

Joseph continues his interpretation of Pharaoh's dreams

"skinny and weak cows." See how you translated a similar phrase in [Genesis 41:3](../41/03.md).

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "seven thin heads of grain scorched because of the hot wind from the east" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Genesis 41:28

Joseph speaks to Pharaoh in the third person. This is a way of showing respect. It can be stated in second person. Alternate translation: "These events will happen just as I have told you ... revealed to you, Pharaoh" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-123person)

"he has made known"

Genesis 41:29

"Pay attention, because what I am about to say is both true and important: seven"

This speaks about the years of abundance as if time is something that travels and comes to a place. Alternate translation: "there will be seven years in which there will be plenty of food throughout the land of Egypt" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Genesis 41:30

Joseph continues interpreting Pharaoh's dreams.

This speaks about the seven years of famine as if they are something that travels and comes to a place. Alternate translation: "Then there will be seven years when there is very little food" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Joseph expresses an idea in two ways to emphasize its importance. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-parallelism)

Here "land" refers to the people. This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "the people of Egypt will forget about the years in which there was plenty of food" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy and translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Here "land" refers to the soil, the people, and the entire country. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Genesis 41:31

Joseph expresses an idea in two ways to emphasize its importance. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-parallelism)

This speaks about the famine as if it were a thing that travels and follows behind something else. Alternate translation: "because of the time of famine that will happen afterwards" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Genesis 41:32

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "God gave you two dreams to show you that he will certainly cause these things to happen" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Genesis 41:33

Joseph continues to address Pharaoh

This does not mean "at this moment," but is used to draw attention to the important point that follows.

Joseph speaks to Pharaoh in third person. This is a way of showing respect. It can be stated in second person. Alternate translation: "You, Pharaoh, should look" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-123person)

The phrase "put him over" means to give someone authority. Alternate translation: "give him authority over the kingdom of Egypt" or "put him in charge of the kingdom of Egypt" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

Here "land" stands for all the people and everything in Egypt. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Genesis 41:34

The word "fifth" is a fraction. Alternate translation: "let them divide the crops of Egypt into five equal parts, then take one of those parts" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-fraction)

"during the seven years in which there is plenty of food"

Genesis 41:35

Joseph continues to counsel Pharaoh

"Allow the overseers to gather"

This speaks of years as if they are something that travels and comes to a place. Alternate translation: "during the good years that will soon happen" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

The phrase "under the authority of Pharaoh" means Pharaoh gives them authority. Alternate translation: "use the authority of Pharaoh to store the grain" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

The word "they" refers to the overseers and represents the soldiers that they should command to guard the grain. Alternate translation: "The overseers should leave soldiers there to guard the grain" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Genesis 41:36

Here "land" refers to the people. Alternate translation: "This food will be for the people" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Here "land" stands for the people. This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "This way the people will not starve during the famine" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy and translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Genesis 41:37

The eyes represent seeing, and seeing represents thoughts or judgment. Alternate translation: "Pharaoh and his servants thought this was a good plan" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

This means Pharaoh's officials.

Genesis 41:38

"a man like the one Joseph described"

"in whom the Spirit of God lives"

Genesis 41:39

"no one else is as capable in making decisions." See how you translated "discerning" in [Genesis 41:33](../41/33.md).

Genesis 41:40

Here "house" stands for Pharaoh's palace and the people in the palace. The phrase "will be over" means Joseph will have authority over. Alternate translation: "You will be in charge of everyone in my palace" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy and translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "you will rule over my people and they will do what you command" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Here "throne" stands for Pharaoh's rule as king. Alternate translation: "Only in my role as king"

Genesis 41:41

The word "See" adds emphasis to what Pharaoh says next. Alternate translation: "Look, I have put you"

The phrase "put you over" means to give authority. Here "land" refers to the people. Alternate translation: "I put you in charge of everyone in Egypt" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom and translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Genesis 41:42

All of these actions symbolize that Pharaoh is giving Joseph the authority to do everything that Joseph planned. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-symaction)

This ring had Pharaoh's seal engraved on it. This gave Joseph the authority and money needed to carry out his plans.

"Linen" here is a smooth, strong cloth made from the blue-flowered flax plant.

Genesis 41:43

This act makes clear to the people that Joseph is second only to Pharaoh. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-symaction)

"Bow down and honor Joseph." To bend the knee and bow down was a sign of honor and respect. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-symaction)

The phrase "put you over" means to give authority. Here "land" refers to the people. See how you translated a similar phrase in [Genesis 41:41](../41/41.md). Alternate translation: "I put you in charge of everyone in Egypt"(See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom and translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Genesis 41:44

Pharaoh is emphasizing his authority. Alternate translation: "As Pharaoh, I command that apart from you"

Here "hand" and "foot" stand for a person's actions. Alternate translation: "no person in Egypt will do anything without your permission" or "every person in Egypt must ask your permission before they do anything" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Here "man" refers to any person in general, whether male or female. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-gendernotations)

Genesis 41:45

Translators may add the following footnote: The name Zaphenath-Paneah means "a revealer of secrets." (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Priests in Egypt were the highest and most privileged caste. This marriage signifies Joseph's place of honor and privilege. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-symaction)

"Asenath" is the name of the woman whom Pharaoh gave to Joseph as his wife. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

"Potiphera" is the father of Asenath. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

On is a city, also called Heliopolis, which was "the City of the Sun" and the center of worship of the sun god Ra. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Joseph traveled over the land to supervise the preparations for the coming drought.

Genesis 41:46

"30 years old" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

Here "stood before" stands for Joseph starting to serve Pharaoh. Alternate translation: "when he started to serve Pharaoh" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Joseph is inspecting the country as he prepares to carry out his plans.

Genesis 41:47

"During the seven good years"

"the land produced big harvests"

Genesis 41:48

Here "He" stands for Joseph's servants. Alternate translation: "Joseph ordered his servants to gather ... They put" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

Genesis 41:49

This compares the grain to the sand of sea to emphasize its great quantity. Alternate translation: "The grain that Joseph stored was as plentiful as the sand on the seashore" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Here "Joseph" and "he" stand for Joseph's servants. Alternate translation: "Joseph had his servants store up ... they stopped" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

Genesis 41:50

This speaks about years as if they are something that travels and comes to a place. Alternate translation: "before the seven years of the famine began" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

a woman's name. See how you translated this in [Genesis 41:45](../41/45.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

"Potiphera" is the father of Asenath. See how you translated this in [Genesis 41:45](../41/45.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

On is a city, also called Heliopolis, which was "the City of the Sun" and the center of worship of the sun god Ra. See how you translated this in [Genesis 41:45](../41/45.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 41:51

Translators may also add a footnote that says, "The name 'Manasseh' means 'to cause to forget.'"

This refers to Joseph's father Jacob and his family.

Genesis 41:52

Translators may also add a footnote that says, "The name 'Ephraim' means 'to be fruitful' or 'to have children.'"

Here "fruitful" means to prosper or to have children. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

The abstract noun "affliction" can be stated as "I have suffered." Alternate translation: "in this land where I have suffered" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-abstractnouns)

Genesis 41:54

In all the surrounding nations beyond Egypt, including the land of Canaan.

It is implied that there was food because of Joseph commanded his people to store food during the seven good years. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 41:55

Here "land" stands for the people. Alternate translation: "When all the Egyptians were starving" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Genesis 41:56

The word "face" refers to the surface of the land. Alternate translation: "The famine had spread throughout the land" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

Here "Joseph" stands for Joseph's servants. Alternate translation: "Joseph had his servants open all the storehouses and sell grain to the Egyptians" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

Genesis 41:57

Here "earth" stands for the people from all regions. Alternate translation: "People were coming to Egypt from all the surrounding regions" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

"throughout the land." It is likely that all the different trading partners and nations that were part of the Egyptian trading routes effected by the drought came to Egypt for grain.

Genesis 42

Genesis 42 General Notes

Special concepts in this chapter

Famine

Apparently this famine extended beyond Egypt and encompassed the land of Canaan too. Because of Egypt's size and power, it would not have been unusual for people to go there in times of need. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Joseph's test

Joseph tests his brothers to see if they are good. They treat their brother Benjamin better than they treated Joseph and tried to protect him.

Genesis 42:1

The word "Now" marks a new part of the story. (See: translationAcademy:translate/writing-newevent)

Jacob uses a question to scold his sons for not doing anything about the grain. Alternate translation: "Do not just sit here!" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion)

Genesis 42:2

It was common to speak of going from Canaan to Egypt as going "down."

Genesis 42:3

It was common to speak of going from Canaan to Egypt as going "down."

Here "Egypt" refers to the people selling grain. Alternate translation: "from those selling grain in Egypt" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Genesis 42:4

Benjamin and Joseph had the same father and mother; their mother was different from the mothers of the other brothers. Jacob did not want to risk sending Rachel's last son. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 42:5

The word "came" can be translated as "went." Also, the words "grain" and "Egypt" are understood. Alternate translation: "The sons of Israel went to by grain along with other people who went to Egypt" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-go and translationAcademy:translate/figs-ellipsis)

Genesis 42:6

"Now" marks a change from the story to background information about Joseph. (See: translationAcademy:translate/writing-background)

Here "land" refers to Egypt. Alternate translation: "over Egypt" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Here "land" includes Egypt and other surrounding countries. Alternate translation: "all the people of all the nations that came to buy grain" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Here "came" can be translated as "went." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-go)

This is a way of showing respect. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-symaction)

Genesis 42:7

"When Joseph saw his brothers, he recognized them"

"he acted like he was not their brother" or "he did not let them know that he was their brother"

This was not a rhetorical question even though Joseph knew the answer. It was part of his choice to keep his identity from his brothers.

Genesis 42:9

Spies are people who secretly try to get information about a country to help another country.

The full meaning can be stated explicitly. Alternate translation: "You have come to find out where we are not guarding our land so that you can attack us" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 42:10

This is a way to refer to someone to honor them.

The brothers refer to themselves as "your servants." This is a formal way of speaking to someone with greater authority. Alternate translation: "We, your servants, have" or "We have" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-123person)

Genesis 42:12

"Joseph said to his brothers"

The full meaning can be stated explicitly. Alternate translation: "No, you have come to find out where we are not guarding our land so that you can attack us" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 42:13

"12 brothers" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

"Listen to us, the youngest." The word "See" is used to emphasize what they say next.

"right now our youngest brother is with our father"

Genesis 42:14

"like I already said, you are spies." See how you translated "spies" in [Genesis 42:9](../42/09.md).

Genesis 42:15

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "This is how I will test you" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

This phrase indicates a solemn oath. Alternate translation: "I swear by the life of Pharaoh"

Genesis 42:16

"Choose one of you to go get your brother"

"The rest of you will remain in prison"

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "so that I may find out if you are telling the truth" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Genesis 42:17

"in prison"

Genesis 42:18

The word "third" is an ordinal number. Alternate translation: "after the second day" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-ordinal)

The understood information can be stated clearly. Alternate translation: "If you will do what I say, I will let you live" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-ellipsis)

This refers to deeply respecting God and showing that respect by obeying him.

Genesis 42:19

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "leave one of your brothers here in prison" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Here "you" is plural and refers to all the brothers that will not stay in prison. Alternate translation: "but the rest of you go" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-you)

Here "houses" stands for families. Alternate translation: "carry grain home to help your family during this famine" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Genesis 42:20

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "so I may know what you say is true" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

This implies that Joseph would have his soldiers execute the brothers if he finds out they are spies. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 42:21

The word "soul" stands for Joseph. Alternate translation: "because we saw how distressed Joseph was" or "because we saw that Joseph was suffering" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

The abstract noun "distress" can be stated as the verb "suffering." Alternate translation: "That is why we are suffering like this now" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-abstractnouns)

Genesis 42:22

Reuben uses a question to scold his brothers. Alternate translation: "I told you not to hurt the boy, but you would not listen!" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion)

This has a quotation within a quotation. It can be stated as an indirect quotation. Alternate translation: "Did I not tell you not to sin against the boy, but" or "I told you not to harm the boy, but" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotesinquotes and translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotations)

Here "Now" does not mean "at this moment," but both "Now" and "see" are used to draw attention to the important point that follows.

Here "blood" stands for Joseph's death. His brothers thought Joseph was dead. The phrase "is required of us" means they must be punished for what they did. Alternate translation: "we are getting what we deserve for his death" or "we are suffering for having killed him" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy and translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

Genesis 42:23

This shifts from the main story line to background information that explains why the brothers thought Joseph could not understand them. (See: translationAcademy:translate/writing-background)

An "interpreter" is someone who translates what one person says into another language. Joseph placed an interpreter between himself and his brothers to make it seem like he did not speak their language.

Genesis 42:24

It is implied that Joseph wept because he was emotional after hearing what his brothers said. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Joseph was still speaking a different language and using the interpreter to speak to his brothers. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Here the people are represented by their "eyes" to emphasize what they see. Alternate translation: "bound him in their sight" or "bound him as they watched" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

Genesis 42:25

"to give them the supplies they needed"

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "The servants did for them everything that Joseph commanded" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Genesis 42:27

"When they stopped at a place for the night, one of the brothers opened his sack to get food for his donkey. In the sack he saw his money!"

The word "behold" here alerts us to pay attention to the surprising information that follows.

Genesis 42:28

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "Someone has put my money back" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

"Look in my sack!"

To become afraid is spoken of as if their heart were sinking. Here "hearts" stands for courage. Alternate translation: "They became very afraid" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor and translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Genesis 42:30

"the lord of Egypt"

"spoke harshly"

Spies are people who secretly try to get information about a country to help another country. See how you translated "spies" in [Genesis 42:9](../42/09.md).

Genesis 42:31

This has a quotation within a quotation. It can be stated as an indirect quotation. "We told him that we are honest men and not spies." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotesinquotes and translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotations)

Genesis 42:32

The quotation within a quotation that began with the words "We said to him, 'We are honest men ... not spies. It can be stated as an indirect quotation. "We told him that we are honest men ... not spies. We said that we are twelve brothers, sons of our father, and that one brother is no longer alive ... land of Canaan" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotesinquotes and translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotations)

The word "brother" is understood. Alternate translation: "One brother is no longer alive" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-ellipsis)

The word "brother" is understood. Alternate translation: "the youngest brother is with our father right now" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-ellipsis)

Genesis 42:33

"The lord of Egypt"

Here "houses" stands for "family." Alternate translation: "take grain to help your family during the famine" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

"go home" or "leave"

Genesis 42:34

"I will allow you to buy and sell in this land"

Genesis 42:35

This phrase is used here to mark an important event in the story. If your language has a way for doing this, you could consider using it here.

"they were surprised because every"

Genesis 42:36

"you have deprived me of my children" or "you have caused me to lose two of my children"

"all these things hurt me"

Genesis 42:37

This is a request for Reuben to take Joseph with him and to care for him on the journey. Alternate translation: "Put me in charge of him" or "Let me take care of him" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Genesis 42:38

It was common to use the phrase "go down" when speaking of traveling from Canaan to Egypt. Alternate translation: "My son, Benjamin, will not go with you to Egypt"

Here "you" is plural and refers to Jacob's older sons. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-you)

The full meaning can be made explicit. Alternate translation: "For my wife, Rachel, only had two children. Joseph is dead and Benjamin is the only one left" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

"while you a traveling to Egypt and back" or "while you are away." Here "road" stands for traveling.

To "bring down ... to Sheol" is way of saying they will cause him to die and go to Sheol. He uses the word "down" because it was commonly believed sheol is somewhere underground. Alternate translation: "then you will cause me, an old man, to die of sorrow" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

This stands for Jacob and emphasizes his old age. Alternate translation: "me, an old man" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

Genesis 43

Genesis 43 General Notes

Special concepts in this chapter

Israel's concern

Israel is concerned over his favored son, Benjamin. He is also confused about the reason the Egyptian official treated them so kindly. This caused him some concern. It is possible he thought his sons were lying to him. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/favor)

Genesis 43:1

The word "Canaan" is understood. This information can be made explicit. Alternate translation: "The famine was severe in the land of Canaan" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-ellipsis)

Genesis 43:2

This phrase is used here to mark the beginning of a new part of the story. If your language has a way for doing this, you could consider using it here. (See: translationAcademy:translate/writing-newevent)

"when Jacob and his family had eaten"

"Jacob's older sons had brought"

Here "us" refers to Jacob, his sons, and the rest of the family. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-inclusive)

Genesis 43:3

"Judah told his father Jacob"

This refers to Joseph, but the brothers did not know it was Joseph. They referred to him as "the man" or "the man, the lord of the land" as in [Genesis 42:30](../42/30.md).

This has a quotation within a quotation. It can be stated as an indirect quotation. Alternate translation: "warned us that we would not see his face unless we brought our youngest brother with us" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotesinquotes and translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotations)

"was very serious when he warned us, saying"

Judah uses this phrase twice in 43:3-5 to emphasize to his father that they cannot return to Egypt without Benjamin. The phrase "my face" refers to the man, who is Joseph. Alternate translation: "You will not see me" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

Judah is referring to Benjamin, Rachel's last born before she died.

Genesis 43:5

It was common to use the phrase "go down" when speaking of traveling from Canaan to Egypt.

Genesis 43:6

"Why did you cause me so much trouble"

Genesis 43:7

"The man asked many questions"

Here "us" is exclusive and refers to the brothers who went to Egypt and spoke with "the man." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-exclusive)

This is a quotation within a quotation. It can be stated as an indirect quotation. Alternate translation: "He asked us directly if our father was still alive and if we had another brother." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotesinquotes and translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotations)

"We answered the questions he asked us"

The sons use a question emphasize that the did not know what the man would tell them to do. This rhetorical question can be translated as a statement. Alternate translation: "We did not know he would say ... down!" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion)

This is a quotation within a quotation. It can be stated as an indirect quotation. Alternate translation: "he would tell us to bring our brother down to Egypt." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotesinquotes and translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotations)

It was common to use the word "down" when speaking of traveling from Canaan to Egypt.

Genesis 43:8

The phrases "we may live" and "not die" mean the same thing. Judah is emphasizing that they have to buy food in Egypt in order to survive. Alternate translation: "We will go now to Egypt and get grain so our whole family will live" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-parallelism)

Here "We" refers to the brothers who will travel to Egypt. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-exclusive)

Here "we" refers to the brothers, Israel, and the whole family. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-inclusive)

Here "we" refers to the brothers. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-exclusive)

Here "you" is singular and refers to Israel. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-you)

Here "our" refers to the brothers. This refers to the small children who were most likely to die during a famine. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-exclusive)

Genesis 43:9

The abstract noun "guarantee" can be stated as the verb "promise." Alternate translation: "I will promise to bring him back" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-abstractnouns)

How Jacob will hold Judah responsible can be stated clearly. Alternate translation: "You will make me answer to you about what happens to Benjamin" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

This speaks about "blame" as if it were an object that a person has to carry. Alternate translation: "you may blame me" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Genesis 43:10

Judah is describing something that could have happened in the past but did not. Judah is scolding his father for waiting so long to send his sons to Egypt to get more food. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-hypo)

"we would have returned twice"

Genesis 43:11

"If this is our only choice, then do it"

It was common to use the word "down" when speaking of traveling from Canaan to Egypt.

an oily substance with a sweet smell used for healing and protecting skin. See how you translated this word in [Genesis 37:25](../37/25.md). Alternate translation: "medicine"

seasonings. See how you translated these words in [Genesis 37:25](../37/25.md).

small, green tree nuts (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-unknown)

tree nuts with a sweet flavor (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-unknown)

Genesis 43:12

Here "hand" stands for the whole person. Alternate translation: "Take double the money with you" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

Here "hand" stands for the whole person. The phrase "that was returned" can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "take back to Egypt the money someone put in your sacks" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche and translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Genesis 43:13

"Take also Benjamin"

"return"

Genesis 43:14

The abstract noun "mercy" can be stated as the adjective "kind." Alternate translation: "May God Almighty cause the man to be kind to you" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-abstractnouns)

"Simeon"

"If I lose my children, then I lose my children." This means that Jacob knows he must accept whatever happens to his sons.

Genesis 43:15

Here "hand" refers to the entire person. Alternate translation: "they took" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

It was common to use the phrase "went down" when speaking of traveling from Canaan to Egypt.

Genesis 43:16

"Benjamin with Joseph's older brothers"

The "steward" was responsible for managing Joseph's household activities.

Genesis 43:17

Here "brought" can be translated as "took." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-go)

"into Joseph's house"

Genesis 43:18

"Joseph's brothers were afraid"

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "they were going into Joseph's house" or "the steward was taking them into Joseph's house" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "The steward is bringing us into the house because of the money that someone put back in our sacks" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

This can be translated as a new sentence. Alternate translation: "He is waiting for the opportunity to accuse us, so that he might arrest us"

Genesis 43:20

It is common to use the phrase "came down" when speaking of traveling from Canaan to Egypt.

Genesis 43:21

The brothers continue speaking to the steward of the house.

This phrase is used here to mark an important event in the story. If your language has a way for doing this, you could consider using it here.

"when we came to the place that we were going to stay for the night"

The word "behold" here shows that the brothers were surprised by what they saw.

"each one of us found the full amount of his money in his sack"

Here "hands" stands for the whole person. Alternate translation: "We have brought the money back with us" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

Genesis 43:22

Here "hand" stands for the whole person. Alternate translation: "We have also brought more money to buy food" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

It common to use the word "down" when speaking of traveling from Canaan to Egypt.

Genesis 43:23

The abstract noun "Peace" can be stated as a verb. Alternate translation: "Relax" or "Calm yourselves" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-abstractnouns)

The stewards is not speaking about two different Gods. Alternate translation: "Your God, the God your father worships"

Genesis 43:24

This custom helped tired travelers to refresh themselves after walking long distances. The full meaning of this statement may be made explicit. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

"Feed" is dry food that is set aside for animals

Genesis 43:26

Here "hand" stands for the entire person. Alternate translation: "the brothers brought the gifts they had with them" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

This is a way of showing honor and respect. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-symaction)

Genesis 43:28

They refer to their father as "Your servant" to show respect. Alternate translation: "Our father who serves you"

These words basically mean the same thing. They laid down in front of the man to show him respect. Alternate translation: "They bowed down in front of him" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-symaction)

Genesis 43:29

This means "he looked up." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

This can be translated with a new sentence. Alternate translation: "his mother's son. Joseph said"

Possible meanings are 1) Joseph is truly asking a question to confirm that this man is Benjamin, or 2) it is a rhetorical question. Alternate translation: "So this is your youngest brother ... me." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion)

This is a friendly way one man speaks to another man of lower rank. Alternate translation: "young man"

Genesis 43:30

"hurried out of the room"

The phrase "deeply moved" refers to having a strong feeling or emotion when something important happens. Alternate translation: "for he had strong feelings of compassion for his brother" or "for he had strong feelings of affection for his brother" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

Genesis 43:31

It can be made explicit to whom Joseph is speaking. Alternate translation: "and said to his servants" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

This means to distribute the food so that people may eat.

Genesis 43:32

This means that Joseph, the brothers, and the other Egyptians are eating in three different places within the same room. Alternate translation: "The servants served Joseph by himself and the brothers by themselves and the Egyptians, who were eating with him, by themselves"

These are probably other Egyptian officials who ate with Joseph, but they still sat separately from him and the Hebrew brothers.

This can be translated as a new sentence: "They did this because the Egyptians thought it was shameful to eat with the Hebrews"

Here "bread" stands for food in general. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

Genesis 43:33

It is implied that Joseph had arranged where each brother would sit. You can make clear the implied information. Alternate translation: "The brothers sat across from the man, according to how he arranged their places" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

The "firstborn" and the "youngest" are used together to mean all the brothers were sitting in order according to their age. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-merism)

"The men were very surprised when they realized this"

Genesis 43:34

The phrase "five times" can be stated more generally. Alternate translation: "But Benjamin received a portion that was much bigger than what his brothers received"

Genesis 44

Genesis 44 General Notes

Special concepts in this chapter

Judah's sacrifice

Judah is willing to sacrifice himself in order to save Benjamin, the favored son of Jacob. Judah's descendants will become the leaders of the Israelites and the godliest of the twelve tribes of Israel. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/favor and translationWords:bible/kt/godly)

Other possible translation difficulties in this chapter

Joseph's test

Joseph tests his brothers to see if they are good. They treat their brother Benjamin better than they treated Joseph and tried to protect him. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/test)

Genesis 44:1

This begins a new event in the story. Most likely this is the next morning after the feast.

The "steward" was responsible for managing Joseph's household activities.

Their money was silver coins most likely in a small bag.

"in his sack"

Genesis 44:2

"Put my silver cup"

The word "brother" is understood. Alternate translation: "in the youngest brother's sack" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-ellipsis)

Genesis 44:3

"The morning light shown"

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "they sent the men away, along with their donkeys" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Genesis 44:4

This question is used to scold the brothers. Alternate translation: "You have treated us badly, after we were good to you!" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion)

Genesis 44:5

This question is used to scold the brothers. Alternate translation: "You already know that this is the cup that my master uses for drinking and for fortune telling!" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion)

This repeats "you have done" for emphasis. Alternate translation: "What you have done is very evil" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-parallelism)

Genesis 44:6

"spoke what Joseph told him to say"

Genesis 44:7

Here "words" stands for what was said. The brothers refer to the steward as "my master." This is a formal way of speaking to someone with greater authority. It can be stated in the second person. Alternate translation: "Why are you saying this, my master?" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy and translationAcademy:translate/figs-123person)

The brothers refer to themselves as "your servants" and "they." This is a formal way of speaking to someone with greater authority. Alternate translation: "We would never do such a thing!" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-123person)

Something that a person would never do is spoken of as if it were an object that person wants to put very far from himself. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Genesis 44:8

"Listen to what we are about to say and you will see that we are speaking the truth: the money"

"you know the money that we found in our sacks"

"we brought back to you from Canaan"

The brothers use a question to emphasize that they would not steal from the lord of Egypt. Alternate translation: "So we would never take anything from your master's house!" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion)

These words are used together to mean that they would not steal anything of any value.

Genesis 44:9

The brothers refer to themselves as "your servants." This is a formal way of speaking to someone with greater authority. It can be stated in the first person. Also, "it is found" can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "If you find that one of us has stolen the cup" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-123person and translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

The phrase "my master" refers to the steward. This can be stated in the second person. Alternate translation: "you may take us as your slaves" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-123person)

Genesis 44:10

"Very well. I will do what you said." Here "now" does not mean "at this moment," but is used to draw attention to the important point that follows.

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "If I find the cup in one of your sacks, that person will be my slave" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Genesis 44:11

"lowered his sack"

Genesis 44:12

The word "brother" is understood. Alternate translation: "the oldest brother ... the youngest brother" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-ellipsis)

This can be translated as a new sentence and in active form. Alternate translation: "youngest. The steward found the cup in Benjamin's sack" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Genesis 44:13

The word "they" refers to the brothers. Tearing clothes was a sign of great distress and sorrow. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-symaction)

"donkey, and they returned"

Genesis 44:14

"Joseph was still there"

"they fell before him." This is a sign of the brothers wanting the lord to be merciful to them. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-symaction)

Genesis 44:15

Joseph uses a question to scold his brothers. Alternate translation: "Surely you know that a man like me can learn things by magic!" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion)

Genesis 44:16

All 3 questions mean basically the same thing. They use these questions to emphasize that there is nothing they can say to explain what happened. Alternate translation: "We have nothing to say, my master. We cannot speak anything of value. We cannot justify ourselves." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-parallelism and translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion)

Here "my master" refers to Joseph. This is a formal way of speaking to someone with greater authority. It can be stated in second person. Alternate translation: "What can we say to you ... your slaves" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-123person)

Here "found out" does not mean God just found out what the brothers did. It means God is now punishing them for what they did. Alternate translation: "God is punishing us for our past sins"

The brothers refer to themselves as "your servants." This is a formal way of speaking to someone with greater authority. It can be stated in first person. Alternate translation: "our iniquity" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-123person)

Here "hand" stands for the whole person. Also, "was found" can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "the one who had your cup" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche and translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Genesis 44:17

Something that a person would never do is spoken of as if it were an object the person wants put far away from him. Alternate translation: "It is not like me to do something like that" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Here "hand" stands for the whole person. Also, "was found" can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "The man who had my cup" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche and translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Genesis 44:18

"approached"

Judah refers to himself as "your servant." This is a formal way of speaking to someone with more authority. This can be stated in first person. Alternate translation: "let me, your servant" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-123person)

The word "ear" is a synecdoche that stands for the whole person. Alternate translation: "speak to you, my master" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

Here "my master" refers to Joseph. This is a formal way of speaking to someone with more authority. This can be stated in second person. Alternate translation: "to you" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-123person)

Being angry is spoke of as if it were a burning fire. Alternate translation: "please do not be angry with me, your servant" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Judah compares the master to Pharaoh to emphasize the great power that the master has. He is also implying that he does want the master to become angry and execute him. Alternate translation: "for you are as powerful as Pharaoh and could have your soldiers kill me" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 44:19

This is a quotation within a quotation. It can be stated as an indirect quotation. Alternate translation: "My master asked us if we have a father or a brother." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotesinquotes and translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotations)

Judah refers to Joseph with the words "my master" and "his." He also refers to himself and his brothers as "his servants." Alternate translation: "You, my master, asked us, your servants" or "You asked us" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-123person)

Genesis 44:20

Judah continues to speak before Joseph

This is a quotation within a quotation. It can be stated as an indirect quotation. Alternate translation: "And we said to my master that we have a father ... his father loves him" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotesinquotes and translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotations)

This refers to love for a friend or family member.

Genesis 44:21

This is a quotation within a quotation. It can be stated as an indirect quotation. Alternate translation: "And you said to your servants that we should bring our youngest brother to you so that you may see him" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotesinquotes and translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotations)

Judah refers to himself and his brothers as "your servants." Alternate translation: "Then you said to us, your servants" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-123person)

It was common to use the word "down" when speaking of traveling from Canaan to Egypt. Alternate translation: "Bring him to me" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 44:22

Judah refers to Joseph as "my master." This is a formal way of speaking to someone with greater authority. Alternate translation: "we said to you, my master" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-123person)

This is a quotation within a quotation. It can be stated as an indirect quotation. Alternate translation: "In response, we said to my master that the boy cannot ... father would die" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotesinquotes and translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotations)

It is implied that their father would die from sorrow. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 44:23

Judah continues his story to Joseph

This is a quotation within a quotation. It can be stated as an indirect quotation. Alternate translation: "Then you said to your servants that unless our youngest brother comes with us, we would not see you again." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotesinquotes and translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotations)

Judah refers to himself and his brothers as "your servants." This is a formal way of speaking to someone with greater authority. Alternate translation: "Then you said to us, your servants" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-123person)

It was common to use the word "down" when speaking of traveling from Canaan to Egypt.

Here "face" stands for the whole person. Alternate translation: "you will not see me again" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

Genesis 44:24

This phrase is used here to mark the beginning of a new part of the story. If your language has a way for doing this, you could consider using it here. (See: translationAcademy:translate/writing-newevent)

It was common to use the phrase "went up" when speaking of traveling from Egypt to Canaan.

Judah refers to Joseph as "my master." Alternate translation: "we told him what you said, my master" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-123person)

Genesis 44:25

This is a quotation within a quotation. It can be stated as an indirect quotation. Alternate translation: "Our father told us to go again to Egypt to buy food for us and our families." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotesinquotes and translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotations)

Genesis 44:26

It was common to use the word "down" when speaking of traveling from Canaan to Egypt.

This is a quotation within a quotation. It can be stated as an indirect quotation. Alternate translation: "Then we said to him that we cannot go down to Egypt. We told him that if our youngest brother is with us ... is with us" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotesinquotes and translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotations)

Here "face" stands for the whole person. Alternate translation: "to see the man" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

Genesis 44:27

Judah continues his story to Joseph.

This is the beginning of a three-level quote.

Here "us" does not include Joseph. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-exclusive)

Here "You" is plural and refers to the brothers. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-you)

Genesis 44:28

The three-level quote that began in verse 27 continues.

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "a wild animal has torn him to pieces" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Genesis 44:29

The three-level quote that began in verse 27 ends here.

The three-level quote that began with the words "Your servant ... said to us, 'You know ... two sons" in verse 27 and continued with the words "and I said, 'Surely ... since" in verse 28 ends here. You may need to change one or more of these levels to indirect quotes. "This is what your servant my father said to us: 'You know that my wife bore me two sons. One of them went out from me and I said that surely he had been torn in pieces, and I have not seen him since. Now if you also take this one from me, and harm comes to him, you will bring down my gray hair with sorrow to Sheol.'" or "Your servant my father told us that we knew that his wife had borne him two sons. One of them went out from him, and he said that surely that son had been torn in pieces, and he has not seen him since. He then said that if we also took this one from him, and harm came to him, we would bring down his gray hair with sorrow to Sheol." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotesinquotes and translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotations)

Something bad happening to a person is spoken of as if "harm" were something that travels and comes to a person. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

To "bring down ... to Sheol" is way of saying they will cause him to die and go to Sheol. He uses the word "down" because it was commonly believed Sheol is somewhere underground. Alternate translation: "then you will cause me, an old man, to die of sorrow" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

This stands for Jacob and emphasizes his old age. Alternate translation: "me, an old man" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

Genesis 44:30

This does not mean "at this moment," but is used to draw attention to the important point that follows.

Judah begins to describe to Joseph a realistic but hypothetical case of what he will expect will happen to Jacob when he returns without Benjamin. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-hypo)

Here "come" can be translated as "go" or "return."

"the boy is not with us"

The father saying he would die if his son died is spoken of as if their two lives were physically bound together. Alternate translation: "since he said he would die if the boy did not come back" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Genesis 44:31

Judah finishes describing to Joseph the realistic but hypothetical case that began with the words "therefore, when I come" in verse 30.

Judah finishes describing to Joseph the realistic but hypothetical case that began with the words "therefore, when I come" in verse 30. This is what he expects will happen to Jacob when he returns without Benjamin. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-hypo)

Judah is speaking about a hypothetical case in the future as if it would certainly happen. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-hypo)

To "bring down ... to Sheol" is way of saying they will cause him to die and go to Sheol. He uses the word "down" because it was commonly believed Sheol is somewhere underground. Alternate translation: "And we will have caused our old father to die of sorrow" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

Judah refers to himself and his brothers as "your servants." This is a formal way of speaking to someone with greater authority. Alternate translation: "And we, your servants" or "And we" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-123person)

Here "gray hair" stands for Jacob and emphasizes his old age. Alternate translation: "our old father" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

Genesis 44:32

The abstract noun "guarantee" can be stated with the verb "promised." Alternate translation: "For I promised my father concerning the boy" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-abstractnouns)

Judah refers to himself as "your servant." Alternate translation: "For I, your servant" or "For I" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-123person)

Being considered guilty is spoken of as if "guilt" were something that a person carries. Alternate translation: "then my father may blame me" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Genesis 44:33

This does not mean "at this moment," but is used to draw attention to the important point that follows.

Judah refers to himself as "your servant." This is a formal way of speaking to someone with greater authority. Alternate translation: "let me, your servant" or "let me" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-123person)

Judah refers to Joseph as "my master." Alternate translation: "to you, my master" or "to you" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-123person)

It was going to use the phrase "go up" when speaking about traveling from Egypt to Canaan.

Genesis 44:34

Judah uses a question to emphasize the grief he would have if Benjamin did not return home. Alternate translation: "I cannot return to my father if the boy is not with me." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion)

A person suffering terribly is spoken of as if "evil" were a thing that comes upon a person. Alternate translation: "I am afraid to see how much my father would suffer" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Genesis 45

Genesis 45 General Notes

Structure and formatting

Joseph finally reveals himself to his brothers in this chapter. This chapter forms the conclusion of the story which began in chapter 43.

Special concepts in this chapter

God's power

The account of Joseph focuses on the power of God. God is able to protect his people despite the evil actions of some. He also is able to continue to bless them despite their circumstances. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/peopleofgod and translationWords:bible/kt/bless)

Joseph's character

Genesis just recorded a period of time where Joseph's ancestors and brothers struggled with sin. Joseph's character in this chapter is upright. It gained him great favor in the eyes of Pharaoh and helped to save his people. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/sin translationWords:bible/kt/save)

Genesis 45:1

This means he could not control his emotions. It can be stated in positive form. Alternate translation: "was about to start crying"

"near him"

Genesis 45:2

Here "house" stands for the people in the Pharaoh's palace. Alternate translation: "everyone in Pharaoh's palace" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Genesis 45:3

"terrified of him"

Genesis 45:4

The meaning can be stated more explicitly. Alternate translation: "whom you sold as a slave to the trader who brought me to Egypt" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 45:5

"do not be upset" or "do not be distressed"

The meaning can be stated more explicitly. Alternate translation: "that you sold me as a slave and sent me here to Egypt" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Here "life" stands for the people that Joseph saved from dying during the famine. Alternate translation: "so I could save many lives" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Genesis 45:6

"there will be five more years without planting or harvesting." Here "neither plowing nor harvest" stands for the fact that the crops still will not grow because of the famine. Alternate translation: "and the famine will last five more years" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Genesis 45:7

"so that you and your families would not completely perish from the earth" or "to make sure your descendants would survive"

The abstract noun "deliverance" can be stated as "rescuing." Alternate translation: "to keep you alive by rescuing you in a mighty way" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-abstractnouns)

Genesis 45:8

Joseph advising and helping Pharaoh is spoken of as if Joseph were Pharaoh's father. Alternate translation: "he has made me a guide to Pharaoh" or "he has made me the chief adviser to Pharaoh" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Here "house" stands for the people who live in his palace. Alternate translation: "of all his household" or "of all his palace" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Here "land" stands for the people. Alternate translation: "ruler over all the people of Egypt" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Here Joseph means that he is ruler in second place to Pharaoh, the king of Egypt. This understood information can be made clear. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 45:9

This is the beginning of a three-level quotation.

It was common to use the phrase "go up" when speaking about going from Egypt to Canaan. Alternate translation: "go back to my father"

It was common to use the phrase "come down" when speaking about going from Canaan to Egypt. Alternate translation: "Come here to me"

Genesis 45:10

The three-level quotation that began in verse 9 continues here.

Genesis 45:11

The three-level quotation that began in verse 9 ends here.

The three-level quotation that began with the words "say to him" in verse 9 ends here. You may need to reduce the number of levels by making some levels indirect quotes. "say to him that his son Joseph says that God has made him master of all Egypt, so he must go down to Joseph and not delay. He will live in the land of Goshen, and he will be near Joseph, he and his children and his children's children, and his flocks and his herds, and all that he has. Joseph will provide for him there, for there are still five years of famine, so that he does not come to poverty, him, his household, and all that he has." or "say to him, 'Your son Joseph says that God has made him master of all Egypt, so he must go down to Joseph and not delay. He will live in the land of Goshen, and he will be near Joseph, he and his children and his children's children, and his flocks and his herds, and all that he has. Joseph will provide for him there, for there are still five years of famine, so that he does not come to poverty, him, his household, and all that he has.'"

This speaks about "poverty" as if it were a destination. Alternate translation: "waste away" or "starve" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Genesis 45:12

The word "eyes" stands for the entire person. Alternate translation: "All of you and Benjamin can see" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

The word "mouth" stands for the entire person. Alternate translation: "that I, Joseph, am speaking to you" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

Genesis 45:13

"how the people in Egypt greatly honor me"

It was common to use the word "down" when speaking of traveling from Canaan to Egypt. Alternate translation: "my father here to me"

Genesis 45:14

"Joseph hugged his brother Benjamin, and they both wept"

Genesis 45:15

In ancient Near East, it is common to greet a relative with a kiss. If your language has an affectionate greeting for a relative, use that. If not, use what is appropriate.

This means Joseph was crying while he kissed them.

Earlier they were too afraid to speak. Now they feel they can speak freely. The full meaning of this statement can be made explicit. Alternate translation: "After that his brothers talked freely with him" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 45:16

This is a quotation within a quotation. It can be stated as an indirect quotation. It may also be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "Everyone in Pharaoh's palace heard that Joseph's brothers had come." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotesinquotes and translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotations and translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

This stands for Pharaoh's palace.

Genesis 45:17

This is the beginning of a two-level quotation.

Genesis 45:18

The two-level quotation that began in verse 17 ends here.

The two-level quotation that began in verse 17 ends here. This is a quotation within a quotation. It can be stated as an indirect quotation. "Pharaoh told Joseph to tell his brothers, 'Do this: Load your animals and go to the land of Canaan. Get your father and your households and come to me. I will give you the good of the land of Egypt, and you will eat the fat of the land.'" or "Pharaoh to Joseph to tell his brothers to do this: to load their animals and go to the land of Canaan, and also to get their father and their households and go to him. Pharaoh would give them the good of the land of Egypt, and they would eat the fat of the land." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotesinquotes and translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotations)

"I will give you the best land in Egypt"

The best food that a land produces is spoken of as if it were the fat portion of the land. Alternate translation: "you will eat the best food in the land" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Genesis 45:19

Pharaoh continues to tell Joseph what to tell his brothers.

This is the beginning of a two-level quotation.

This does not mean "at this moment," but is used to draw attention to the important point that follows.

This can be stated in active form. You may also need to add the words "to tell them," which the writer left out of this ellipsis. Alternate translation: "I also command you to tell them" or "also tell them" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive and translationAcademy:translate/figs-ellipsis)

"Carts" are wagons with two or four wheels. Animals pull the carts.

Genesis 45:20

The two-level quote that began in verse 19 ends here.

The two-level quote that began in verse 19 ends here. This is a quotation within a quotation. It can be stated as an indirect quotation. "Now you are commanded to tell them to take carts out of the land of Egypt for their children and for their wives, to get their father, and to come. They are not to be concerned about their possessions, for the good of all the land of Egypt will be theirs." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotesinquotes and translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotations)

Genesis 45:21

"gave them what they needed for traveling"

Genesis 45:22

Each man received a set of clothes except for Benjamin who received 5 sets of clothes. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

"300 pieces" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

Genesis 45:23

The donkeys were included as part of the gift. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 45:24

Possible meanings include 1) "do not argue" and 2) "do not become afraid"

Genesis 45:25

It was common to use the word "up" when speaking of traveling from Egypt to Canaan.

Genesis 45:26

Here "land of Egypt" stands for the people of Egypt. Alternate translation: "he rules all the people of Egypt" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Here "heart" stands for the whole person. Alternate translation: "and he was astonished" or "he was very surprised" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

"he did not accept that what they said was true"

Genesis 45:27

"They told Jacob"

"everything that Joseph had said to them"

The word "spirit" stands for the whole person. Alternate translation: "Jacob their father recovered" or "Jacob their father became very excited" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

Genesis 46

Genesis 46 General Notes

Special concepts in this chapter

Going to Egypt

Yahweh allowed Israel to go to Egypt. He was to trust in Yahweh and his covenant faithfulness. God continued to bless them in Egypt. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/trust and translationWords:bible/kt/covenantfaith and translationWords:bible/kt/bless)

Shepherds

Because of the regular flooding of the Nile River, Egypt's economy revolved around farming more than raising animals. Therefore, the Egyptians despised the nomadic lifestyle of shepherds. Joseph's instructions permitted the Hebrew people to live separately from the Egyptians.

Genesis 46:1

"came to Beersheba"

Genesis 46:2

"Yes, I am listening"

Genesis 46:3

It was common to use the phrase "go down" when speaking of traveling from Canaan to Egypt.

The "you" is singular and refers to Jacob. Here Jacob refers to his descendants that will become a large nation. Alternate translation: "I will give you many descendants, and they will become a great nation" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-you and translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Genesis 46:4

"to Egypt"

The promise was made to Jacob, but the promise would be fulfilled to all of Israel's descendants. Alternate translation: "I will surely bring your descendants out of Egypt again" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-you and translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

It was common to use the word "up" when speaking about traveling from Egypt to Canaan.

The phrase "close you eyes with his own hand" is a way of saying that Joseph will be present when Israel dies and it will be Joseph who will close Jacob's eyelids at the time of his death. Alternate translation: "Joseph will even be present with you at the time of your death" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

It was a custom to pull down the eyelids when a person died with their eyes open. The full meaning of this statement can be made explicit. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 46:5

"set out from"

"Carts" are wagons with two or four wheels. Animals pull the carts. See how you translated "carts" in [Genesis 45:19](../45/19.md).

Genesis 46:6

"they had acquired" or "they had gained"

Genesis 46:7

"Jacob brought with him"

"his grandsons"

"his granddaughters"

Genesis 46:8

This refers to the names of the people that the author is about to list.

"of Israel's family members"

Genesis 46:9

These are all names of men. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 46:10

These are all names of men. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 46:11

These are all names of men. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 46:12

These were the sons of Judah by his wife, Shua. See how you translated these names in [Genesis 38:3-5](../38/03.md).

These were the sons of Judah by his daughter-in-law, Tamar. See how you translated these names in [Genesis 38:29-30](../38/29.md).

These are all names of men. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 46:13

These are all names of men. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 46:14

These are all names of men. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 46:15

This is the name of Leah's daughter. See how you translated this name in [Genesis 30:21](../30/21.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Here "sons" and "daughters" refer to Jacob's sons, daughters, and grandchildren related to Leah. Alternate translation: "Altogether he had 33 sons, daughters, and grandchildren" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

Genesis 46:16

These are the names of men. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 46:17

These are the names of men. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

This is the name of a woman. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 46:18

This is the name of Leah's female servant. See how you translated this name in [Genesis 29:24](../29/24.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

This refers to 16 children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren that were related to Zilpah. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

Genesis 46:20

a woman's name. See how you translated this in [Genesis 41:45](../41/45.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

a man's name. See how you translated this in [Genesis 41:45](../41/45.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

On is a city, also called Heliopolis, which was "the City of the Sun" and the center of worship of the sun god Ra. See how you translated this in [Genesis 41:45](../41/45.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 46:21

These are names of men. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 46:22

This refers to the 14 sons and grandsons related to Rachel. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

Genesis 46:23

This is the name of a man. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 46:24

These are the names of men. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 46:25

This is the name of Rachel's female servant. See how you translated this name in [Genesis 29:29](../29/29.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

This refers to the 7 children and grandchildren related to Bilhah. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

Genesis 46:26

"66" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

Genesis 46:27

"70" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

Genesis 46:28

"to show them the way to Goshen"

Genesis 46:29

Here "Joseph" stands for his servants. Alternate translation: "Joseph's servants prepared his chariot and Joseph went up" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

The phrase "went up" is used because Joseph is traveling to a higher elevation to meet his father. Alternate translation: "went to meet Israel"

"put his arms around his father, and wept for a long time"

Genesis 46:30

"Now I am ready to die" or "Now I will die happy"

Here "face" stands for the entire person. Jacob was expressing joy at seeing Joseph. Alternate translation: "since I have seen you alive again" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

Genesis 46:31

This is the beginning of a two-level quotation.

Here "house" stands for his family. Alternate translation: "his father's family" or "his father's household" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

It was common to use the phrase "go up" when referring to someone going to speak with someone with greater authority. Alternate translation: "I will go tell Pharaoh"

Genesis 46:32

The two-level quotation that began in verse 31 ends here.

The two-level quotation that began with the words "I will go up" in verse 31 ends here. This is a quotation within a quotation. It can be stated as an indirect quotation. Alternate translation: "I will go up and tell Pharaoh and say that my brothers and my father's house, who were in the land of Canaan, have come to me. I will tell him that the men are shepherds, for they have been keepers of livestock, and that they have brought their flocks, their herds, and all that they have." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotesinquotes and translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotations)

Genesis 46:33

This is the beginning of a two-level quotation.

This phrase is used here to mark an important event that is about to happen in the story. If your language has a way for doing this, you could consider using it here.

Genesis 46:34

The two-level quotation that began in verse 33 ends here.

The two-level quotation that began with the words "when Pharaoh ... asks" in verse 33 ends here. This is a quotation within a quotation. It can be stated as an indirect quotation. "when Pharaoh ... asks what your occupation is, that you should say that you have been keepers of livestock from your youth until now, both you and your forefathers. Do this" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotesinquotes and translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotations)

Joseph's family are to refer to themselves as "your servants" when they speak to Pharaoh. This is a formal way of speaking to someone with greater authority. It can be stated in the first person. Alternate translation: "We, your servants" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-123person)

The abstract noun "abomination" can be translated with the adjective "disgusting." Alternate translation: "Egyptians think shepherds are disgusting" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-abstractnouns)

Genesis 47

Genesis 47 General Notes

Special concepts in this chapter

Abrahamic covenant

Part of the Abrahamic covenant was that Yahweh would bless those who bless Abraham's descendants. Since Pharaoh cared for the Hebrew people, Yahweh blessed the Egyptians while the Hebrew people lived in Egypt. The Hebrew people also multiplied greatly as this covenant promised. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/covenant and translationWords:bible/kt/bless and translationWords:bible/kt/promise)

Jacob was not buried in Egypt

In the ancient Near east, a person was typically buried in their hometown. Since Egypt was not the Israelites' home, Jacob did not wish to be buried in Egypt. This was a lesson to the Israelites that Canaan was their true home, the promised land. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/promisedland)

Genesis 47:1

It is not clear whether Joseph went with his father and family from Canaan to Goshen and then alone from Goshen to see the Pharaoh, back to Goshen for his five brothers, and then back to Pharaoh, as the ULT implies, or whether he brought the five brothers with him the first time he went from Goshen to Pharaoh, as the UST states. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-events)

Genesis 47:2

It is not clear whether Joseph went with his father and family from Canaan to Goshen and then alone from Goshen to see the Pharaoh, back to Goshen for his five brothers, and then back to Pharaoh, as the ULT implies, or whether he brought the five brothers with him the first time he went from Goshen to Pharaoh, as the UST states. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-events)

Genesis 47:3

"Your servants shepherd flocks"

Joseph's brothers refer to themselves as "your servants." This is a formal way of speaking to someone with more authority. This can be stated in first person. Alternate translation: "We, your servants" or "We" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-123person)

"both we and our forefathers" or "both we and our ancestors"

Genesis 47:4

"We have come to stay for a while in Egypt"

"There is no grass to eat"

This does not mean "at this moment," but is used to draw attention to the important point that follows.

Genesis 47:6

"The land of Egypt is open to you" or "All of the land of Egypt is available to you"

"Settle your father and your brothers in the land of Goshen, which is the best region"

It is implied that they are capable of taking care of animals. Alternate translation: "If you know of any men among them who have great skill taking care of animals" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 47:7

Here "blessed" means to express a desire for positive and beneficial things to happen to that person.

Genesis 47:8

"How old are you?"

Genesis 47:9

The phrase "years of my travels" refers to how long he has lived on the earth traveling from one place to another. Alternate translation: "I have traveled on the earth for 130 years" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

Jacob means his life is short compared to the lives of Abraham and Isaac.

Jacob has experienced much pain and trouble during his life.

Genesis 47:11

"Then Joseph took care of his father and his brothers and helped them establish where they would live"

This is another name for the land of Goshen. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 47:12

Here, the word "dependents" means the small children in the family. Alternate translation: "according to how many small children were in their families"

Genesis 47:13

This word is used here to mark a break in the main story line. Here the author starts to tell a new part of the story.

This refers to the people living in these lands. Alternate translation: "The people of Egypt and the people of Canaan" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

"became thin and weak"

Genesis 47:14

"The people of Egypt and Canaan spent all of their money buying grain from Joseph"

Most likely Joseph ordered his servants to gather and bring the money. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Genesis 47:15

Here "lands" stands for the people who live in the lands. This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "When the people of Egypt and Canaan used up all their money" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy and translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

"from the land of Egypt and from the land of Canaan"

The people used a question to emphasize how desperate they are to buy food. This question can be translated as a statement. Alternate translation: "Please, do not let us die because we have used up all of our money!" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion)

Genesis 47:17

Here "bread" stands for food in general. Alternate translation: "He gave them food" or "He provided them with food" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

Genesis 47:18

"the people came to Joseph"

The people refer to Joseph as "my master." This is a formal way of speaking to someone with greater authority. It can be stated in second person. Alternate translation: "We will not hide from you, our master" or "We will not hide from you" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-123person)

Here "sight" stands for Joseph himself. Alternate translation: "We have nothing left to give you, our master" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Genesis 47:19

The word "eyes" refers to Joseph's sight. The people use a question to emphasize how desperate they are to buy food. This question can be translated as a statement. Alternate translation: "Please do not just watch as we die and our land is ruined!" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy and translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion)

The land becomes useless and ruined because there is no seed to plant; thus it is spoken of as if the land would die. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Genesis 47:20

"So the land became Pharaoh's"

Genesis 47:22

"But he did not buy the land of the priests"

An "allowance" is an amount of money or food that someone regularly gives to another person. This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "Pharaoh gave the priests a certain amount of food each day" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

"They ate from what Pharaoh gave them"

Genesis 47:23

"that you might sow"

Genesis 47:24

The word "fifth" is a fraction. Alternate translation: "At harvest time you will divide the crops into five parts. You will give one part back to Pharaoh for payment and the four parts are for your own" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-fraction)

You can state clearly the understood information. Alternate translation: "for food for your households and for food for your children" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-ellipsis)

Genesis 47:25

The phrase "find favor" is an idiom which means to be approved of by someone. Also, the eyes represent seeing, and seeing represents thoughts or judgment. Alternate translation: "May you be pleased with us" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom and translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Genesis 47:26

"over the land of Egypt" or "throughout the land of Egypt"

This means to the time that the author was writing this.

See how you translated "a fifth" in [Genesis 47:24](../47/24.md).

Genesis 47:27

The word "multiplied" explains how they were "fruitful." Alternate translation: "They had very many children" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-doublet)

Here "fruitful" means to prosper or to have children. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

Genesis 47:28

"17 years" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

"so Jacob lived to be 147 years old" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

Genesis 47:29

This speaks about time as if it travels and comes to a place. Alternate translation: "When it was almost time for Israel to die" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Here "eyes" is a metonym for sight, and "sight" stands for thoughts or opinions. Alternate translation: "If I have found favor with you" or "If I have pleased you" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy and translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

This does not mean "at this moment," but is used to draw attention to the important point that follows.

This means that someone is approved of by someone else. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

This act is a sign of making a serious promise. See how you translated this in [Genesis 24:2](../24/02.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-symaction)

The abstract nouns "faithfulness" and "trustworthiness" can be translated as adjectives. Alternate translation: "treat me in a faithful and trustworthy manner" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-abstractnouns)

The word "please" adds emphasis to this request.

Genesis 47:30

Here "sleep" is a polite way to refer to dying. Alternate translation: "When I die and join my family members who died before me" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-euphemism)

Genesis 47:31

"Promise me" or "Make an oath to me"

"promised him" or "made an oath to him"

Genesis 48

Genesis 48 General Notes

Structure and formatting

Some translations set each line of poetry farther to the right than the rest of the text to make it easier to read. The ULT does this with the poetry in 48:15-16, and in 58:20.

Special concepts in this chapter

Blessing

The blessing of Jacob is given to Joseph, and his sons Manasseh and Ephraim. It is probably distinct from inheriting the promises Yahweh gave to Abraham because Scripture talks about all of Israel's descendants inheriting those promises. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/bless and translationWords:bible/kt/inherit and translationWords:bible/kt/promise)

Genesis 48:1

This phrase is used here to mark the beginning of a new part of the story. (See: translationAcademy:translate/writing-newevent)

"someone said to Joseph"

"Listen, your father." Here the word "look" is used to get Joseph's attention.

"So Joseph took"

Genesis 48:2

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "When someone told Jacob" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

"your son Joseph has come to you"

Here the author speaks of Israel struggling to sit up in bed as if he were gathering "strength" as someone gathers actual things. Alternate translation: "Israel made a great effort to sit up in bed" or "Israel struggled as he sat up in bed" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Genesis 48:3

This is the name of a city. See how you translated the name of this city in [Genesis 28:19](../28/19.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

This can be translated with the new sentence starting in a different place. Alternate translation: "in the land of Canaan, and he blessed me"

This refers to God pronouncing a formal blessing on someone.

Genesis 48:4

This can be translated with the new sentence starting in a different place. Alternate translation: "And he said to me"

This is a quotation within a quotation. It can be stated as an indirect quotation. Alternate translation: "said to me that he would make me fruitful and multiply me. And, he said that he would make me an assembly of nations and he would give this land to my descendants as an everlasting possession." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotesinquotes and translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotations)

God used the word "behold" here to alert Jacob to pay attention to what he was about to tell him.

The phrase "multiply you" explains how God would make Jacob "fruitful." Alternate translation: "I will give you very many descendants" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-doublet and translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

Here "you" refers to Jacob, but it stands for Jacob's descendants. Alternate translation: "I will make your descendants into many nations" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

"a permanent possession"

Genesis 48:5

This does not mean "at this moment," but is used to draw attention to the important point that follows.

Ephraim and Manasseh each will receive a portion of land just like Joseph's brothers.

Genesis 48:6

Possible meanings are 1)the rest of Joseph's children would inherit land as part of the tribes of Ephraim and Manasseh or 2) Joseph will be given separate land from Ephraim and Manasseh and Joseph's other children will inherit that land. Alternate translation: "as for their inheritance, you will list them under the names of their brothers"

Genesis 48:7

This is another name for the town of Bethlehem. See how you translated the name of this city in [Genesis 35:16](../35/16.md).

Genesis 48:8

"Whose sons are these?"

Genesis 48:9

A father would often pronounce a formal blessing on his children or grandchildren.

Genesis 48:10

The word "Now" is used here to mark a change from the story to background information about Israel. (See: translationAcademy:translate/writing-background)

"Israel kissed them"

Genesis 48:11

Here "face" stands for the whole person. Alternate translation: "to see you again" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

Genesis 48:12

When Joseph placed his sons on Israel's lap or knees it was a sign that Israel was adopting them. This gave the children special inheritance rights from Jacob. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-symaction)

Joseph bowed down to show honor to his father. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-symaction)

Genesis 48:13

Joseph places the boys so that Israel will put his right hand on Manasseh. Manasseh was the oldest brother and the right hand was the sign he would receive the greater blessing. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-symaction)

Genesis 48:14

Placing the right hand on Ephraim's head was the sign that he would receive the greater blessing. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-symaction)

Genesis 48:15

Here "Joseph" also stands for Ephraim and Manasseh. Since Joseph is the father, he is the only one mentioned here. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

Serving God is spoken of as if it were walking before God. Alternate translation: "The God who my grandfather Abraham and father Isaac served" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

God has taken care of Israel like a shepherd takes care of his sheep. Alternate translation: "who has cared for me like a shepherd cares for his animals" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 48:16

Possible meanings are 1) this refers to the angel that God sent to protect Jacob or 2) this refers to God who appeared in angel form to protect Jacob.

"delivered me"

Here "name" stands for the person. The phrase "my name be named in them" is an idiom that means a person is remembered because of another person. This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "May people remember Abraham, Isaac, and me because of Ephraim and Manasseh" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy and translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom and translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

Here "they" refers to Ephraim and Manasseh, but it stands for their descendants. Alternate translation: "May they have many descendants who will live all over the earth" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Genesis 48:18

The right hand was the sign of the greater blessing which the oldest son was supposed to receive. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-symaction)

Genesis 48:19

Here "He" refers to Manasseh, but it stands for his descendants. Alternate translation: "Your older son will have many descendants, and they will become a great people" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Genesis 48:20

"that day, saying"

"The people of Israel will speak your names when they are blessing others"

This is a quotation within a quotation. It can be stated as an indirect quotation. Alternate translation: "by your names. They will ask God to make others like Ephraim and like Manasseh" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotesinquotes and translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotations)

Israel saying Ephraim's name first is another way he indicates that Ephraim will be greater than Manasseh.

Giving Ephraim the greater blessing and making him more important than Manasseh is spoken of as if Israel physically put Ephraim in front of Manasseh. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Genesis 48:21

Here "you" and "your" are plural and refer to all the people of Israel. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-you)

This is an idiom that means God will help and bless the people of Israel. Alternate translation: "God will help you" or "God will bless you" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

Here "bring" can be translated as "take." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-go)

"land of your ancestors"

Genesis 48:22

Possible meanings are 1) Joseph having more honor and authority than his brothers is spoken of as if he were physically above them. Alternate translation: "To you, who is greater than your brothers, I give the mountain slope" or 2) Jacob means he is giving more land to Joseph than he is giving to Joseph's brothers. Alternate translation: "To you, I give one more ridge than I give your brothers. I give to you the mountain slope" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Here "you" is singular and refers to Joseph. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-you)

Here "sword" and "bow" stands for fighting in battle. Alternate translation: "the portion of land I fought for and took from the Amorites" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Genesis 49

Genesis 49 General Notes

Structure and formatting

Some translations set each line of poetry farther to the right than the rest of the text to make it easier to read. The ULT does this with the poetry in 49:1-27.

Special concepts in this chapter

Prophecies

These statements made by Jacob to his sons are probably prophecies. These prophecies are concerned with the descendants of each of Jacob's sons who would become the twelve tribes of Israel. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/prophet)

Other possible translation difficulties in this chapter

"The scepter will not depart from Judah"

This prophecy indicates Judah will be the ruling tribe of Israel. The future kings of Israel all come from the tribe of Judah. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

"I buried Leah"

Since Moses wrote the book of Genesis, this is an editorial comment he makes in the text as the narrator.

Genesis 49:1

This begins Jacob's final blessings to his sons. This continues through [Genesis 49:27](../49/27.md). Jacob's blessings are written in poetic form. (See: translationAcademy:translate/writing-poetry)

Genesis 49:2

Both sentences say the same thing for emphasis. Alternate translation: "Come and listen carefully to your father" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-parallelism)

Jacob is referring to himself in the third person. It can be stated in the first person. Alternate translation: "my sons. Listen to me, your father" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-123person)

Genesis 49:3

The phrases "my firstborn, my might" and "the beginning of my strength" mean the same thing. The words "might" and "strength" stand for Jacob's ability to produce children. The words "firstborn" and "beginning" mean that Reuben is his first child. Alternate translation: "my first child after I became a man" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-parallelism)

This can be stated as a new sentence. Alternate translation: "You are first in honor and power" or "You surpass everyone else in honor and power"

Genesis 49:4

Jacob compares Reuben to water in a strong current to emphasize that he cannot control his anger and he is not stable. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-simile)

"you shall not be first among your brothers"

Here "bed" and "couch" stand for Jacob's concubine, Bilhah. Jacob is referring to when Reuben slept with Bilhah ([Genesis 35:22](../35/22.md)). Alternate translation: "because you went to my bed and slept with Bilhah my concubine. You have shamed me" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Both statements mean the same thing. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-parallelism)

Genesis 49:5

This does not just mean they are brothers by birth. Jacob is emphasizing that they worked together to kill the people of Shechem.

"They use their swords to hurt and to kill people"

Genesis 49:6

Jacob uses the words "soul" and "heart" to refer to himself and is saying that other people,and perhaps God also, honor him so much that he does not wish to join with those who make plans to do evil. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

These two phrases mean basically the same thing. Jacob combines them to emphasize that he does not want to participate in their wicked plans. Alternate translation: "I certainly will not join with them to make any plans" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-parallelism)

This refers to Simeon and Levi crippling oxen just for fun.

This refers to cutting the sinews of an animal's leg so that it cannot walk.

Genesis 49:7

God cursing Simeon and Levi is spoken of as if God were cursing their anger and fury. This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "The Lord says, 'I will curse them because of their fierce anger and their cruel fury" or "I, the Lord, will curse them because of their fierce anger and their cruel fury" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor and translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

In prophecy, the prophet will often speak the words of God as if God himself were speaking. This emphasizes how closely united the prophet and God are.

The words "I will curse" are understood. Alternate translation: "I will curse their fury, for it was cruel" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-ellipsis)

The word "I" refers to God. The word "them" refers to Simeon and Levi but they are a metonym standing for their descendants. The words "Jacob" and "Israel" are a metonym standing for all people of Israel. Alternate translation: "I will divide their descendants and scatter them among all the people of Israel" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy and translationAcademy:translate/figs-parallelism)

Genesis 49:8

These two statements mean the same thing. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-parallelism)

The second sentence states the reason for the first sentence. This can be made clear with "for" or "because." Alternate translation: "will praise you. For your hand" or "will praise you because your hand" (See: translationAcademy:translate/writing-connectingwords)

This is a way of saying "You will conquer your enemies." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

This means to bend over to humbly express respect and honor toward someone. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-symaction)

Genesis 49:9

Jacob speaks about Judah as if he were a lion's cub. Jacob is emphasizing Judah's strength. Alternate translation: "Judah is like a young lion" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

"You, my son, have come back from eating your prey"

Jacob also compares Judah to a female lion. The lioness is the primary hunter and protector of her cubs. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-simile)

Jacob uses a question to emphasize how terrifying Judah is to other people. Alternate translation: "No one wants to wake him up." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion)

Genesis 49:10

The "scepter" and the "staff" are long decorated sticks that kings carried. Here they are metonymies that stand for the power to rule. And, "Judah" stands for his descendants. Alternate translation: "The power to rule will always be with the descendants of Judah" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy and translationAcademy:translate/figs-parallelism)

Possible meanings are 1) "Shiloh" means "tribute." Alternate translation: "until the nations obey him and bring him tribute" or 2) "Shiloh" refers to the city of Shiloh. Alternate translation: "until the ruler comes to Shiloh. Then the nations will obey him" Many people consider this a prophecy about the Messiah, who is a descendant of King David. David is a descendant of Judah.

Here "nations" refer to the people. Alternate translation: "The people of the nations will obey him" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Genesis 49:11

Both statements mean the same thing. It is implied that the vines are so full of grapes that the master does not mind that his donkey eats some of them. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-parallelism and translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Possible meanings for all occurrences of "his" or "he" are 1) they refer to Judah's descendants. Alternate translation: "their ... they" or 2) they refer to the ruler in [Genesis 49:10](../49/10.md), which may refer to the Messiah.

Both statements mean the same thing. It implies that there are so many grapes that they can wash their clothes in the juice. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-parallelism and translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Often in prophecy events that will happen in the future are described as something that has already happened in the past. This emphasizes that this event will certainly happen. Alternate translation: "they will wash" or "he will wash" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-pastforfuture)

This speaks about the grape juice as if it were blood. This emphasizes how red the juice is. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Genesis 49:12

This refers to the color of a person's eyes to the red color of wine. Possible meanings are 1) dark eyes imply healthy eyes or 2) people eyes will be red from drinking too much of wine. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-simile and translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

This compare the color of the person's teeth to the white color of milk. This implies that there will be so many healthy cows they will have much milk to drink. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-simile and translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Genesis 49:13

This refers to the descendants of Zebulun. Alternate translation: "The descendants of Zebulun will live" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Here "He" stands for sea towns that the people of Zebulun will inhabit or build. These cities will provide shelter for ships. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

a part of the sea that is next to land and is a safe place for ships

Genesis 49:14

Jacob speaks about Issachar and his descendants as if they are a donkey. This emphasizes that they will work very hard. Alternate translation: "The descendants of Issachar will be like a strong donkey" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Often in prophecy events that will happen in the future are described as something that is already happening. This emphasizes that the event will certainly happen. It can be stated in the future tense. Alternate translation: "Issachar will be" or "The descendants of Issachar will be"

Possible meanings are 1) "lying down between the packs they were carrying" or 2) "lying down between two sheep pens." Either way, Jacob speaks about Issachar's descendants as if they are donkeys that have worked hard and are lying down to rest. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Genesis 49:15

These words refer to the descendants of Issachar (verse 14). Alternate translation: "They see ... They will" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

"a resting place that is good and that the land is pleasant"

The phrase "bend his shoulder to the burden" is a way of saying "work very hard to carry the load" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

"will work for others as slaves"

Genesis 49:16

Here "Dan" stands for his descendants. Alternate translation: "The descendants of Dan will judge their people" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Possible meanings for "his people" are 1) "the people of Dan" or 2) "the people of Israel"

Genesis 49:17

Jacob speaks about Dan and his descendants as if they were snakes. Though a snake is small, it can bring down a rider off his horse. So Dan, though a small tribe, is very dangerous to its enemies. Alternate translation: "The descendants of Dan will be like a snake beside the road" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Genesis 49:18

The abstract noun "salvation" can be translated as "save." Alternate translation: "I wait for you, Yahweh, to save me"

The word "I" refers to Jacob.

Genesis 49:19

Here "Gad" stands for his descendants. Alternate translation: "The descendants of Gad ... attack them, but they" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Here "heels" stands for the raiders who are running away from the descendants of Gad. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

Genesis 49:20

Here "Asher" stands for his descendants. Alternate translation: "Asher's descendants' food ... and they" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Here "rich" is a way of saying "delicious." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

Genesis 49:21

Here "Naphtali" stands for his descendants. Alternate translation: "The descendants of Naphtali are ... they will" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Jacob speaks about the descendants of Naphtali as if they were a female deer that is free to run. This may emphasize that they will be swift messengers. Alternate translation: "The descendants of Naphtali will be like deer set free" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

A "fawn" is a baby deer. The meaning of the Hebrew word is unclear. Some versions translate it as "have beautiful words" or "speak beautiful things" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Genesis 49:22

Here "Joseph" is a metonym that stands for his descendants. Jacob speaks about them as if they were a tree branch that produces a lot of fruit. This emphasizes that they will greatly increase in number. Alternate translation: "The descendants of Joseph are a fruitful bough" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy and translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

a main branch of a tree

Branches that grow and extend over a wall are spoken of as if they were climbing. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Genesis 49:24

Jacob continues to bless Joseph and his descendants.

The person holding the bow steady is spoken of as if the bow itself will remain steady. It is implied he is holding it steady as he aims at his enemy. Alternate translation: "he will hold his bow steady as he aims at his enemy" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy and translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

Here "his" refers to Joseph who stands for his descendants. Alternate translation: "their bow ... their hands" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Here the whole person is represented by the "hands" since they are used to hold the bow. Alternate translation: "his arms will remain strong as he aims his bow" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

The "hands" are expressing the power of Yahweh. Alternate translation: "the power of the Mighty One" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Here "name" refers to the entire person. Alternate translation: "because of the Shepherd" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Jacob speak of Yahweh as if he were a "Shepherd." This emphasizes that Yahweh guides and protects his people. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Jacob speaks of Yahweh as if he were a "Rock" that people can climb upon to find safety from enemies. This emphasizes that Yahweh protects his people. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Genesis 49:25

Jacob continues to bless Joseph and his descendants ([Genesis 49:22-23](./22.md)).

Here "you" refers to Joseph who stands for his descendants. Alternate translation: "help your descendants ... bless them" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Here "sky" stands for the rain that helps the crops to grow. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Here "deep" stands for the water underneath the ground that supplies rivers and wells. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Here "breasts and womb" stand for the ability for a mother to have children and feed them milk. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

Genesis 49:26

Jacob continues to bless Joseph and his descendants.

The meaning of the original language is not certain. Some Bible translations have "my ancestors" instead of "ancient mountains."

Here "they" refers to the blessings of his father.

Jacob desires for these blessings to be passed on to even the most important of his descendants. Alternate translation: "on the head of the most important of Joseph's descendants" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

"most important of his brothers"

Genesis 49:27

Here "Benjamin" is a metonym that stands for his descendants. Jacob speaks about Benjamin's descendants as if they were a hungry wolf. This emphasizes that they will be fierce warriors. Alternate translation: "The descendants of Benjamin will be like hungry wolves" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy and translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Genesis 49:28

"These" refers to the sons Jacob mentioned in 49:1-27. Each son became the leader of his own tribe.

Here the word "blessed" refers to the speaking of formal blessings.

"He gave each son a fitting blessing"

Genesis 49:29

"he commanded them"

This is a polite way of saying he is about to die. Alternate translation: "I am about to die" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-euphemism and translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

Jacob is referring to where his inner man will go when he dies. He expects to join Abraham and Isaac in the afterlife. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-euphemism and translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

This is the name of a man. "Hittite" means "descendent of Heth." See how you translated this in [Genesis 23:8](../23/08.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 49:30

Machpelah was the name of an area or region. See how you translated this in [Genesis 23:9](../23/09.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

This was another name for the city of Hebron. It may have been named after Mamre, the friend of Abraham who lived there. See how you translated this in [Genesis 13:18](../13/18.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 49:31

Jacob continues speaking to his sons.

Genesis 49:32

The purchase can be made explicit. Alternate translation: "in it were purchased by Abraham" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

"from the Hittites"

Genesis 49:33

"finished instructing his sons" or "finished commanding his sons"

Jacob was sitting on the bed. Now, Jacob turns and puts his feet in the bed so he can lie down.

This is a polite way of saying a person died. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-euphemism)

After Jacob died, his inner man went to the same place as his relatives who died before him. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-euphemism and translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

Genesis 50

Genesis 50 General Notes

Special concepts in this chapter

Embalming

Embalming was practiced in Egypt on very important people when they died. They removed the liquids from the body then wrapped it in an attempt to preserve the body from decay.

Joseph's character

Joseph's character was so upright that Pharaoh's officials went with him to Canaan to bury Jacob. This was a very large funeral procession. He also learned lessons from earlier in his life and unified his family. (See: translationWords:bible/kt/righteous)

Genesis 50:1

The term "he collapsed" is an idiom for being overcome. Alternate translation: "that he fell on his father in grief" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

Genesis 50:2

"his servants who took care of dead bodies"

To "embalm" is a special way of preserving a dead body before it is buried. Alternate translation: "to prepare his father's body for burial" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-euphemism)

Genesis 50:3

"They took 40 days" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

"70 days" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

Genesis 50:4

A three-level quotation is introduced with the words "Joseph spoke ... saying." The second level begins with the words "If now I have found favor in your eyes, please speak to Pharaoh, saying."

"days of mourning him" or "days of weeping for him"

Here "house of Pharaoh" stands for the officials that make up Pharaoh's royal court. Alternate translation: "Joseph spoke to Pharaoh's officials" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

The phrase "find favor" is an idiom which means to be approved of by someone. Also, the eyes represent seeing, and seeing represents thoughts or judgment. Alternate translation: "If I have found favor with you" or "If you are pleased with me" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom and translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Genesis 50:5

The three-level quotation that began with the words "Joseph spoke ... saying" in verse 4 continues. The second level of that quotation, which began with the words "If now I have found favor in your eyes, please speak to Pharaoh, saying" in verse 4 continues.

This is the second level of the three-level quotation that begins with the words "If now I have" in verse 4. It contains a quote within it. This embedded quote can be translated as an indirect quote. "My father made me swear, saying that he was about to die and that I was to bury him in his tomb that he dug for himself in the land of Canaan. I was to bury him there. Now let me go up ... I will return." The entire second-level quotation can also be translated as an indirect quote. "If now I have found favor in your eyes, please speak to Pharaoh and tell him that my father made me swear, saying that he was about to die and that I was to bury him in his tomb that he dug for himself in the land of Canaan. I was to bury him there. Now let me go up ... I will return." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotesinquotes and translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotations)

This is the third level of the three-level quotation that begins with the words "If now I have" in verse 4.

"See, I am dying"

It was common to use the phrase "go up" when speaking of traveling from Egypt to Canaan.

Genesis 50:6

It is implied that the members of the court spoke to Pharaoh, and now Pharaoh is replying to Joseph. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-explicit)

"as you swore to him"

Genesis 50:7

It was common to use the phrase "went up" when speaking of traveling from Egypt to Canaan.

All of Pharaoh's most important leaders attended the burial procession.

Here "household" refers to Pharaoh's royal court.

Genesis 50:8

This can be translated as a new sentence: "Joseph's household, his brothers, and his father's household also went with him" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-events)

Genesis 50:9

Here this stands for the men riding in the chariots. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

"It was a very large gathering"

Genesis 50:10

The word "they" refers to the participants in the burial procession.

Possible meanings are 1) the word "Atad" means "thorn" and it may refer to a place where large amounts of thorns grew, or 2) it may be the name of the person who owns the threshing floor. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

"they were extremely sad and they mourned very much"

"a 7-day" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

Genesis 50:11

Possible meanings are 1) "on the threshing floor that belonged to a man named Atad" or "in the threshing floor at a place called Atad" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

"The mourning of the Egyptians is very great"

The translator can add a footnote that says: "The name Abel Mizraim means "the mourning of Egypt.'" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 50:12

"So Jacob's sons"

"just as he had directed them"

Genesis 50:13

"His sons took his body"

Machpela was the name of an area or region. See how you translated this in [Genesis 23:9](../23/09.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

This was another name for the city of Hebron. It may have been named after Mamre, the friend of Abraham who lived there. See how you translated this in [Genesis 13:18](../13/18.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

This is the name of a man. "Hittite" means "descendent of Heth." See how you translated this in [Genesis 23:8](../23/08.md). (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

Genesis 50:14

"Joseph returned to Egypt"

"all who had come with him"

Genesis 50:15

Here anger is spoken of as if it was something physical that Joseph could hold in his hands. Alternate translation: "What if Joseph is actually still angry with us" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Avenging oneself against someone who harmed him is spoken of as if the person were paying they other person what they are owed. Alternate translation: "wants revenge for the evil thing we did to him" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metaphor)

Genesis 50:16

A three-level quotation begins with the words "Your father gave."

Jacob was the father of all the brothers. Here they say "your father" to emphasize that Joseph needs to pay attention to what his father said. Alternate translation: "Before our father died he said"

Genesis 50:17

The three-level quotation that begins with the words "Your father gave" in verse 16 ends here.

The three-level quotation that begins with the words "Your father gave" in verse 16 ends here. This is the second-level quotation, and it contains a third-level quotation that can be stated as an indirect quotation. "Tell Joseph to please forgive your transgression and your sin when you did evil to him." Both the second- and third-level quotations can be translated as indirect quotations. "Your father instructed us before he died to tell you to please forgive our transgression and our sin when we did evil to you." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotesinquotes and translationAcademy:translate/figs-quotations)

"for the wicked things they did to you"

This does not mean "at this moment," but is used to draw attention to the important point that follows.

The brothers are referring to themselves as "the servants of the God of your father." This can be stated in first person. Alternate translation: "please forgive us, the servants of the God of our father" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-123person)

"Joseph wept when he heard this message"

Genesis 50:18

They lay down with their faces toward the ground. This is a sign of humility and respect for Joseph. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-symaction)

Genesis 50:19

Joseph uses a question to comfort his brothers. Alternate translation: "I am not in the place of God." or "I am not God." (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-rquestion)

Genesis 50:20

"you intended to do evil against me"

"God intended it for good"

Genesis 50:21

"So do not fear me"

"I will always make sure you and your children have enough to eat"

Here "hearts" refers to the brothers. Alternate translation: "He comforted them by speaking kindly to them" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-synecdoche)

Genesis 50:22

"110 years" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

Genesis 50:23

"Ephraim's children and grandchildren"

This is the name of Joseph's grandson. (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-names)

This expression means that Joseph adopted these children of Machir as his own children. This means they would have special inheritance rights from Joseph. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-idiom)

Genesis 50:24

In [Genesis 50:24/26](./24.md) the word "you" refers to Joseph's brothers, but it also stands for their descendants. (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-metonymy)

It was common to use the word "up" when speaking of traveling from Egypt to Canaan. Alternate translation: "bring you out of this land and take you to the land" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-events)

Genesis 50:26

"one hundred and ten years" (See: translationAcademy:translate/translate-numbers)

To "embalm" is a special way of preserving a dead body before it is buried. See how you translated "embalmed" in [Genesis 50:1](../50/01.md).

This can be stated in active form. Alternate translation: "they placed him" (See: translationAcademy:translate/figs-activepassive)

"in a chest" or "in a case." This is a box a dead person is placed in.