the words

The word torah means teaching.  The Torah comprises the five books of Moses:  Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers and Deuteronomy.  Words fascinate me, and the choice of words must be quite meaningful.  The Hebrew names of the first five books reference the first word or one of the first words of the named book.  The Hebrew chapter names are chosen the same way.  There are no english chapter names that I’m aware of.  So here are the english and hebrew translations of the five books of Moses:

  • Genesis:  from the Greek means birth or origin
    • B’reisheet: means in the beginning
  • Exodus:  from the Greek meaning departure
    • Sh’mot:  means names
  • Leviticus:  from the Greek relating to the Levites (Levites being the family of Moses, Miriam and Aaron, the Levi family, who were the first High Priests)
    • Vayikra:  means and He called
  • Numbers:  means numbers
    • Bamidbar:  means in the desert
  • Deuteronomy:  from the Greek means second law
    • D’varim:  means things or words

 So we’ll have to see how the words are influenced by the text and vice versa.  The english names are clearly more thematically driven, and the hebrew more textually driven.  I’d love to hear any insight into why this might be the case.  Now, moving on to the end of Exodus….

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