[b-hebrew] Genesis 12: 5: Are "Souls" Slaves?

Shoshanna Walker rosewalk at concentric.net
Sat Nov 17 18:03:25 EST 2007

It is the consensus (unanimous as far as I know) among Chazal, that 
these refer to the people who he "converted" to the knowledge of G-d. 
It is beyond belief that this could be construed as slaves.


>Genesis 12: 5 tells us that certain people came with  Abraham and Lot from
>Harran to Canaan, who almost certainly were not members of  the 
>immediate family
>of Abraham or Lot:  "the souls that they had gotten in Haran".  Are these
>people "slaves", who had been  "bought" by Abraham and Lot in Harran?  Or,
>rather, are these people distant relatives of Abraham's father, 
>whose  families were
>the social equals of Abraham's father's family, and who were on a  long
>caravan trip out to Mesopotamia with Abraham's father's family as 
>security  guards?
>Here is the JPS1917 translation of Genesis 12:  5:

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