Journal of Undergraduate Research


reexamining creation, Qal and Piel Uses of ברא, Biblical studies


Religious Education


Ancient Scripture


The first chapter of Genesis begins with two Hebrew words that have been the focus of much debate among biblical scholars. The second word, ברא , most often translated as created, has a history and nuanced meaning that has proven particularly difficult to pin down. Though it is clear that this verb refers to the act of creation, other places where the same root shows up—and the different meanings given to those other attestations— indicate a subtle connotation in Genesis with a complicated history. A clear, allencompassing etymology for the root has proven elusive.

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