christine's bible study

The grass withers, the flower fades, but the word of our God stands forever. Isa 40:8

genesis 1:1-6:8, bereisheet, “in the beginnning”

Read Genesis 1:1-6:8 at Bible Gateway.

The paragraph divisions for bereisheet are posted hereIn 2011 I posted the bookends of a complex chiastic structure formed by bereisheet but was not able to complete its center portion. In 2012 I posted a completely different chiastic structure formed by bereisheet that emerged as I was organizing my notes. This year the Lord helped me complete the original chiastic structure begun in 2011 (please read the teaching tools of scripture if you are unfamiliar with Hebrew paragraph divisions or chiastic structures):

1a) Gen 1:1-2:3 px7, Elohiym’s pleasure in the goodness of His creation;
— 1a.1) Gen 1:1-2, Elohiym created the heavens and the earth + Spirit of Elohiym hovered over the face of the waters;
— 1a.2) Gen 1:3-31 px6, Six days of creation + Elohiym saw everything that He had made, and it was very good;
— 1a.3) Gen 2:1-3 p, Rest on the seventh day;
1b) Gen 2:4-3:24 s+s+p+s, Adam did not walk + promise of Messiah + consequences:
— 1b.1) Gen 2:4-3:14, Adam did not walk with Elohiym because of unbelief and sin;
— 1b.2) Gen 3:15-24 s+s+p+s, Promise of Messiah + consequences of sin: painful toil, curse on the ground, death;
1c) Gen 4:1-26 s, The seed of Adam through Cain, the unrighteous line;
central axis) Gen 5:1-2, Elohiym created mankind in His own likeness and blessed them;
2c) Gen 5:3-20 sx6, The seed of Adam through Seth, the righteous line;
2b) Gen 5:21-32 sx3, Enoch did walk + Noah a type of Messiah + consequences:
— 2b.1) Gen 5:21-24 s, Enoch walked with Elohiym and did not die;
— 2b.2) Gen 5:25-32 s+s, Noah a type of Messiah who will give rest from the curse;
—- 1a) Gen 5:25-27 s, Methuselah begot Lamech;
—- 1b) Gen 5:28, Lamech lived one hundred and eighty-two years, and had a son;
—- central axis) Gen 5:29, Noah will give us rest because of our work + toil/ of the ground which YHVH has cursed;”
—- 2b) Gen 5:30-31 s, All the days of Lamech were seven hundred and seventy-seven years; and he died;
—- 2a) Gen 5:32, Noah begot Shem, Ham, and Japheth.
2a) Gen 6:1-8 p, YHVH’s grief in the wickedness of His creation;
— 2a.1) Gen 6:1-4 p, Spirit of Elohiym shall not strive with flesh forever:
—- 1a) Gen 6:1, Daughters of men born;
—- 1b) Gen 6:2, Sons of Elohiym took them for wives;
—- central axis) Gen 6:3, “My Spirit shall not strive with man forever, because he is also flesh; nevertheless his days shall be one hundred and twenty years;”
—- 2b) Gen 6:4a, Children of the sons of Elohiym;
—- 2a) Gen 6:4b p, That the daughters of men bore to them.
— 2a.2) Gen 6:5-7, Elohiym saw man’s wickedness, and was grieved + destroy what He had made;
— 2a.3) Gen 6:8 p, Noah (“comfort, rest”) found grace in the eyes of YHVH.

Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, over all[a] the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.”

Genesis 1:26-27

The central axis of bereisheet brings out two amazing realities about Elohiym our Creator.

The first is the fact that Elohiym as our Creator, is properly our Father. The most basic meaning of “father” is the one who procreates offspring. Gen 5:1-3 tells us that Adam begot a son (became a father) in his own likeness and image, just as Elohiym created mankind in His own likeness.

The second is the fact of Elohiym‘s blessing upon us, not mankind’s failure or sin, or the curse, work, or painful toil we earned for ourselves. It is the enemy who attempts to focus our attention on our failures. He is the accuser of the brethren. The focus of God is His blessing upon us. He is our Father, which means, our encourager and upholder, the uplifter of our head (in both Hebrew ab and Greek pater, along with the sense of nourisher and protector).

The word of God encourages us to think on whatsoever is good, lovely, of good report. Our Father obeys His own Word, and thinks on whatsoever is good, lovely, and of good report about us.

Case in point: I am constantly reminded every time I read bereisheet, that God established rest (shabbat) as a gift of grace from the consequence of work and painful toil that we earned for ourselves, even before man fell. He is ever seeking that which blesses us for our benefit, just as any good Father does. Isn’t it interesting that Sabbath rest on the seventh day, is the matching pair for Noah (“comfort, rest”), the type of Messiah? Messiah is our shabbat.

Previous studies in bereisheet.


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