The Seventh Day—Rest
2 So the ·sky [heavens], the earth, and all ·that filled them [L their hosts] were ·finished [completed]. 2 By the seventh day God ·finished [completed] the work he had been doing, so he ·rested [or ceased] from all his work [L he had done]. 3 God blessed the seventh day and ·made it a holy day [consecrated it; set it apart], because on that day he ·rested [or ceased] from all the work he had done in creating [1:1] the world.
The First People
4 ·This is the story [L These are the generations; C introduces a new section of the book; see also 5:1; 6:9; 10:1; 11:10, 27; 25:12, 19; 36:1, 9] of the creation of the ·sky [heavens] and the earth. When the ·Lord God [Yahweh Elohim; C Elohim is the common term for God; Lord (capital letters) represents the divine name YHWH, usually pronounced “Yahweh”; see Ex. 3:14–15] first made the earth and the ·sky [heavens], 5 there were still no plants on the earth. Nothing was growing in the fields because the Lord God had not yet made it rain on the land. And there was no person to ·care for [or till; work] the ground, 6 but a ·mist [or stream] would rise up from the earth and water all the ground.
7 Then the Lord God took dust from the ground and formed a man from it [C there is wordplay between “ground” (adama) and “man” (adam)]. He breathed the breath of life into the man’s nose, and the man became a living person. 8 ·Then the Lord God [or The Lord God had] planted a garden in the east [C probably east of Palestine], in a place called Eden [C related to a word meaning “luxurious”], and put the man he had formed into it. 9 The Lord God caused every ·beautiful [L desirous to see] tree and every tree that was good for food to grow out of the ground. In the middle of the garden, God put the tree ·that gives life [T of life] and also the tree ·that gives the knowledge [T of the knowledge] of good and evil.
10 A river flowed through Eden and watered the garden. From there the river ·branched out [divides] to become four ·rivers [L heads]. 11 The first river, named Pishon [C otherwise unknown], flows around the whole land of Havilah [C otherwise unknown], where there is gold. 12 The gold of that land is excellent. Bdellium [C a sweet-smelling resin like myrrh] and onyx [C a precious stone] are also found there. 13 The second river, named Gihon [C a small stream in Jerusalem (1 Kin. 1:33), but here perhaps referring to another river], flows around the whole land of Cush [C often referring to Ethiopia, but here likely a place in Mesopotamia; see 10:7]. 14 The third river, named Tigris [C a major river in Mesopotamia], flows out of Assyria [C in northern Mesopotamia (present-day Iraq)] toward the east. The fourth river is the Euphrates [C a major river in Mesopotamia; the location of Eden is uncertain, but this passage suggests Mesopotamia].
15 The Lord God [L took and] put ·the man [or Adam; 1:27] in the garden of Eden to ·care for [or till] it and ·work [take care of; look after] it. 16 The Lord God commanded him, “You may eat the fruit from ·any tree [or all the trees] in the garden, 17 but you must not eat the fruit from the tree ·which gives the [T of the] knowledge of good and evil [C eating from this tree would make Adam, not God, the determiner of right and wrong]. If you ever eat fruit from that tree, you will [L certainly] die!”
The First Woman
18 Then the Lord God said, “It is not good for the man to be alone. I will make a helper [C in the sense of a partner or ally; the word does not imply subordinate status; see Ps. 79:9] who ·is right for [is suitable for; corresponds with] him.”
19 From the ground God formed every ·wild animal [L animal of the field] and every bird in the ·sky [heavens], and he brought them to the man ·so the man could name them [L to see what he would call them]. Whatever the man called each living thing, that became its name. 20 The man gave names to all the ·tame animals [beasts; livestock], to the birds in the ·sky [heavens], and to all the ·wild animals [L animals of the field]. But ·Adam [or the man; 1:27] did not find a helper that was right for him [2:18]. 21 So the Lord God caused ·the man to sleep very deeply [L a deep sleep to fall on the man/Adam], and while he was asleep, God removed one of the man’s ·ribs [or sides]. Then God closed up the man’s skin at the place where he took the ·rib [or side]. 22 The Lord God used the ·rib [or side] from the man to ·make [L build; construct] a woman, and then he brought the woman to the man.
23 And the man said,
“·Now, this is someone whose bones came from my bones,
whose body came from my body [L At last, this is bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh].
·I will call her [L She will be called] ‘woman [C Hebrew ‘ishshah],’
because she was taken out of man [C Hebrew ‘ish].”
24 So a man will leave his father and mother [C in the sense of a new primary loyalty] and be united with his wife, and the two will become one ·body [T flesh].
25 The man and his wife were naked, but they were not ashamed.