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

JimStinehart at aol.com JimStinehart at aol.com
Sat Nov 17 23:24:55 EST 2007


 
Kenneth Greifer: 
You wrote:  “You said Abraham  was gathered to his people in Canaan, so he 
was from Canaan. Jacob was gathered  to his people in Egypt in Genesis 49:33, 
Aaron in Numbers 20:24 outside of  Canaan and Egypt (?), and Moses in 
Deut.32:50. How do you explain how they were  gathered to their people outside of Israel 
(or Canaan)?” 
    1.  Abraham was gathered to his people/“am” in Hebron,  Canaan.
“And Abraham expired, and died  in a good old age, an old man, and full of 
years; and was gathered to his people  [“am”].  And Isaac and Ishmael his  sons 
buried him in the cave of Machpelah, in the field of Ephron the son of  Zohar 
the Hittite, which is before Mamre [at Hebron, in Canaan]”.   Genesis 25:  
8-9 
On  the traditional view that not a single one of Abraham’s ancestors ever 
stepped  foot in Canaan at any time, Genesis 25: 8-9 is nonsensical.  But since 
in fact the Hebrews are  indigenous to Canaan, and are portrayed as such in 
the Patriarchal narratives,  Genesis 25: 8-9 makes perfect sense.  Abraham was 
gathered to his people/”am” in Hebron,  Canaan. 
    1.  Isaac was gathered to his people/“am” in Hebron,  Canaan.
“And Jacob came unto Isaac his father to Mamre, to  Kiriatharba--the same is 
Hebron--where Abraham and Isaac sojourned.  …And Isaac expired, and died, and 
was  gathered unto his people [“am”], old and full of days; and Esau and 
Jacob his  sons buried him.”  Genesis 35: 27,  29 
    1.  Although Jacob/“Israel” died in Egypt, Jacob was buried  at, and 
gathered to his people/“am” at, Hebron,  Canaan.
“And when Jacob  made an end of charging his sons, he gathered up his feet 
into the bed, and  expired, and was gathered unto his people [“am”].  …And 
Joseph went up [from Egypt to  Canaan] to bury his father;  and  with him went up 
all the servants of Pharaoh, the elders of his house, and all  the elders of 
the land of Egypt….For his sons carried him into the land of  Canaan, and 
buried him in the cave of the field of Machpelah, which Abraham  bought with the 
field, for a possession of a burying-place, of Ephron the  Hittite, in front of 
Mamre [in Hebron, Canaan].”    Genesis 49: 33;  50: 7, 13   
    1.  I’ll let you guys talk about Aaron and Moses.  What I am saying is 
that all three  Patriarchs are portrayed in the Patriarchal narratives as being 
buried at, and  gathered to their people/“am” at, Hebron,  Canaan.
If no ancestor of Abraham ever stepped foot in Canaan, it  would not make 
sense for the text to be stating that all three Patriarchs were  gathered to 
their people/“am” in Hebron,  Canaan. 
    1.  Please note that the word “am”, which includes the  concept of 
ancestors, is never used when anyone is in Mesopotamia in the  Patriarchal 
narratives.  Rather,  references to relatives at Ur or Harran are exclusively in terms 
of  mowledeth/kindred/father’s descendants, a term that never includes  
ancestors.  That’s because  Terakh’s ancestors never stepped foot in Mesopotamia.  
They were indigenous to northern  Canaan/Lebanon.
    1.  Why do you guys keep thinking that the Patriarchal  narratives would 
try to lead us astray as to where the Hebrews came from?  Modern 
archaeologists have determined  that the Hebrews were indigenous to Canaan or greater 
Canaan.  The Patriarchal narratives have been  saying that for 3,500 years now.
    1.  In my opinion, it is not fair to reinterpret the  Patriarchal 
narratives in terms of later books of the Bible.  For example, Genesis 15: 13, 16 has 
 tremendous historical accuracy if it is interpreted in terms of the  
Patriarchal narratives, rather than being interpreted in terms of the Book of  Exodus.
Do you think that Abraham learned broken Hebrew at age  75?  Didn’t YHWH 
speak to Abraham in  Hebrew at Harran?  Don’t you think  the author of the 
Patriarchal narratives realized that people in Mesopotamia in  the Patriarchal Age 
did not speak a language like  Hebrew? 
If we would jettison the Ezekiel-era  reinterpretation/misinterpretation of 
the Patriarchal narratives, we would  discover that the Patriarchal narratives 
have breathtaking historical accuracy,  from the secular historical viewpoint 
of the mid-14th century  BCE.  That’s what I’m  saying. 
When the Patriarchal narratives tell us that all three  Patriarchs were 
gathered to their people/“am” at Hebron, Canaan, that means that  the Hebrews were 
indigenous to Canaan, a different part of Canaan than Hebron,  namely 
northern Canaan/Lebanon. 
Jim Stinehart 
Evanston, Illinois



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