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Author Topic:   The Serpent of Genesis is not the Dragon of Revelations
Member (Idle past 320 days)
Posts: 9069
From: god's waiting room
Joined: 05-21-2004

Message 301 of 302 (298497)
03-27-2006 12:26 AM
Reply to: Message 295 by Mr. Ex Nihilo
03-26-2006 11:19 PM

ha-nechashim ha-seraphim (in numbers)
{arach, you can verify this information for me if you wish}


Apparently, according to Dr. Bullinger, in addition to "serpent", this Hebrew root word also has three other possible meanings:

1) Nachash can be used as a noun to mean one who practices divination. This is suggested by some to be used in Numbers 23:23 and 24:1 for example.

2) Nachash can also be used as a noun to mean shining brass. In Chaldee it means brass or copper -- because of its shining. Hence also, the word Nehushtan, a piece of brass, in 2Kings 18:4.

now, back on page four i listed all of the meanings of nachash, as well as several of the related words. because i was lazy, and generous, i left out the vowels. but i promise you that the vowels change.

it's a little bit of a weird point -- because the vowels were never originally recorded, and added later. the words are certainly related, i'll give you that. but i won't give you "shining." the word is a word relating to color -- and the serpents are called nachashim because of their color.

curiously, your "nehushtan," if we un-slur the vowels is "nechushetan." the tail end of that should sound familiar. i'm not sure if it's even a purposeful association. consider satan's abscence in kings (but presence in chronicles) i would say that it's probably just a coincidence.

3) Nachash can also be used as a verb to mean to shine or to glow. Some have suggested that the verb nachash always means to enchant, fascinate, bewitch -- or of one having and using occult knowledge. They refer to Genesis 30:27; 44:5,15. Leviticus 19:26. Deuteronomy 18:10. 1Kings 20:33. 2Kings 17:17; 21:6. 2Chronicles 33:6.

i don't see any usage that fits "shine." and those you listed are ALL of the uses of nachash as a verb. if you can show me another one?

According to some, in the Genesis account, it is possible that nachash is used in the verbal form. If that is the case, one translation of hanachash in the Genesis account could be "the shining one".

supposing for a second that the verb nachash means "shine" (which is not demonstrated at this time), we HAVE a name that is the noun form this verb: nachshon.

ha-nachash means "the serpent."

In addition to this, it has been suggested that Saraph, in Isaiah 6:2 & 6, means a burning one. Apparently because the serpents mentioned in Numbers 21 were burning (in the poison of their bite) they were called Saraphim, or Seraphs.

the words used in numbers 21 are הַנְּחָשִׁים הַשְּׂרָפִים ha-nechashim ha-seraphim. the "ha-seraphim" is an adjective. (trust me, this is a very standard hebrew construction)

But when the LORD said unto Moses, "Make thee a fiery serpent" in Numbers 21.8, he effectively said, "Make thee a Saraph". In obeying this command, we read in verse 9, "Moses made a Nachash of brass".

Nachash is thus being used interchangeably with Saraph.

in this one instance, and this one instance only. god is refering to the firey-snakes, not ANY snake. and everywhere else, even the firey-snakes are called by the title i used above: ha-nechashim ha-seraphim. they are not interchangeable, because not EVERY nachash is a nachash seraph. (at best, this is an argument for a word missing from the bible...)

Now, if Saraph is used of a serpent because its bite was burning, and is also used of a celestial or spirit-being (a burning one), why couldn't nachash be used of a serpent because its appearance was shining, and be also used of a celestial or spirit-being (a shining one)?

no. the seraphim of isaiah are called "seraphim" because they are on fire. here, the word is being used as a noun, not a adjective. it's not in regards to shining, it's in regards to fire.

this argument is essentially that all seraphim are literally serpents. were the serpents in numbers, that afflicted the israelites, also angelic?

In addition to this, it has been suggested that the word employed for "beast" in Genesis 3:1 is chay and it litterally denotes a 'living being'. If true, it has been suggested that it is flat-out wrong to translate chay as "beast" in the Genesis account because, in 'plain text', it simply means living creature. In other words, it does not say that the serpent was a "beast", but only that he was "more wise" than any other living being.

you're missing half the phrase. genesis says חַיַּת הַשָּׂדֶה -- chayat ha-sadeh. "field animal." while "chay" does mean life in general, this is a phrase that specifically applies to animals (and esau)

This brings up another point too:

Where do the Scriptures actually say that God made the serpent?

The 'plain text' statement is: "Now the serpent was more crafty than any of the wild animals the LORD God had made." Or, if you check the KJV: "Now the serpent was more subtil than any beast of the field which the LORD God had made." The Westminster Codex translation can be found here...


Nonetheless, reviewing this information, the passage in question doesn't actually state that God made the serpent. It just says that the serpent was more crafty than any animal that God made -- 'plain text' reading and all.

mmhmm. good eye. i was waiting for someone to point out that it never actually says that the serpent is among the animals, or made by god. however, he is clearly associated with them, isn't he?

well, hebrew's a funny language.

וְהַנָּחָשׁ, הָיָה עָרוּם, מִכֹּל חַיַּת הַשָּׂדֶה, אֲשֶׁר עָשָׂה יְהוָה אֱלֹהִים

v'ha-nachash, hayah arom, m'kol chayat ha-sadeh, asher asah yahueh elohim;

and-the-serpent, was crafty, from-all animals the-field, that made [the lord] god.

and the serpent was the craftiest of all the wild animals that the lord god made

that's how *i* read it anyways. anyone read hebrew a little better?

(the server is currently down, but I'm sure many here can verify this in another on-line Hebrew concordance).

don't trust concordances. they're only useful for showing how a word was translated elsewhere, and the other contexts. not for true definitions -- and they certainly don't show any grammar, at all. and half the time, the part of speech is even wrong.

i'm not trying to argue that "you have to read it in hebrew" but it really does help. which is why i'm learning hebrew in the first place.

i might address those references. most seem to be establishment of a theme, at best. no actual links. is that a post i missed?


This message is a reply to:
 Message 295 by Mr. Ex Nihilo, posted 03-26-2006 11:19 PM Mr. Ex Nihilo has not yet responded

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Message 302 of 302 (298498)
03-27-2006 12:26 AM

Witching Hour Folk
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