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Volume 19 - Page 131 of 154 Index | Zoom | |
of life", is a translation already in use for an entirely different set of Hebrews words, it is
not to be commended.
Nephesh in Gen. 2:
"Man became a living soul" (Gen. 2: 7).
"Adam called every living creature" (Gen. 2: 19).
It is easy for us to point to this passage (2: 7) as evidence of bias on the part of our
translators and to ask why the English reader is led to believe that man differs from the
beast and creeping thing. Similarly it is easy in the blindness that pride, even of the truth,
can bring, to fall into the equality fatal error of saying that man is nothing more than the
beasts that perish. Let us observe one or two facts that are to be found in these two
Man is undoubtedly a living soul. Cattle and creeping things and great whales are also
as undoubtedly living souls. To stay here, however, is to be content with but half the
truth, which, as the poet says, is "ever the blackest of lies".
In chapter 1:, where the animals are called "living souls", man is not so called. When
man is to be made, God does not say, "Let the earth bring forth", but:--
"Let us make man in our image after our likeness: and let them have dominion . . . . .
so God created man in His own image, and in the image of God created He him, male and
female created He them" (Gen. 1: 26, 27).
Is it necessary, when repudiating the error of the immortality of the soul, to plunge
into the equal error of denying all that is implied by this deliberation of God at the
creation of man? While man and beast are alike "living souls", man alone was created in
the image of God. In Gen. 2: 7 we have the additional statement, not mentioned in
Gen. 1: 27, concerning the "breath of life" (to a consideration of which we must devote a
Again, an essential difference between man and the rest of creation is evident
from Gen. 2: 18-23. God said, "I will make a help meet for him". Kinagado, the
word translated "meet", means "corresponding to him", literally "according to his
front-presence" (see Lloyd's Analysis). The LXX uses two expressions; in verse 18 it
reads kat'autou, "suitable to him", "in harmony with him", and, in verse 20, homoios
auto, "like to himself". All this is in direct contrast to the animal creation that passed
before Adam's view and it impressed upon him that he stood separated from every other
living soul by virtue of the likeness and image of his Maker. There is more in this
passage than we can well speak of publicly. Sufficient, however, has been said for our
Were there two Adams?
Before leaving this passage we ought to deal briefly with the suggestion put forward
by many students of Scripture, that the differences in the creation of man and woman, as