The Book of the Lion and the Lamb - a Biblical exposition manuscript

Its okay for us to diverge. I think humanity is special in that God granted us dominion over most of His creation (as stewards not as tyrants). I think that we have dreadfully abused our dominion. What we see the “animal rights” advocates and EPA sympathizers expressing is the EXACT attitude that humanity was intended to have towards creation (nature) - but we blew it. We failed nature. And sometimes I think that the natural disasters are not only a scientific natural phenomenon in response to our abuse of nature, but also a spiritual response. Remember in the OT the Israelites never experienced their “Year of Jubilee” for failing to give the land its divinely appointed period of rest?

Hence, I believe that we are both Beloved AND Special. Not to take away from the beloved status of all of Creation. God did declare nature as “Good!”. But when He created man and woman, He declared, “Very Good!” That sounds special to me.

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BTW,

Are you a weirdo, or something? I am only asking because it takes one to know one. And YOU seem to be the only person courageous enough to respond to such an unpopular topic. I didn’t anticipate having any response or feedback, but rather, a lonely stream of consciousness (as I am accustomed to when it comes to the Bible).

I’ve lost many friends simply because of my faith in the Word. They think I’ve lost my mind to STILL believe and cling on to this stuff. Esp. when there are so many “cosmic” ideologies floating about that are much more favorable to the humanistic nature.

I appreciate you, Mary. How do you maintain friendships as a disciple of Christ? This, I have yet to master.

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GEN. 1: 20-23 Fifth Day - Birds and Fish:

The Heights and Depths of Life

ESSENTIAL TRUTH : By a direct impartation of the Triune Divine Being - a living creature can operate victoriously as a fish can live gracefully in seas among monsters (Just as man must have a moment-by-moment dependence upon Christ in order to function in a hostile environment (world). The Blessing of procreation requires sex with volition, desire - so that it is vitalizing creation. Creating = Blessing of God to be fruitful and multiply. Thus far in the creative “week” there is a hidden “non-consecutive order - but a triad -overlapping as such: Day 5 correlates with Day 2; Day 4 correlates with Day 1 (Sun and Moon). The first series of 3s deal with the realities of Light = Sun / Moon; Ocean and Sky = Fish / Birds; Land = Animals / Man. (Gen. 1: 11) - “Let the earth put forth vegetation”. Hence, (Gen. 1: 20) - in Hebrew it translates, “Let the waters swarm with swarmers and let the fliers fly”. (Gen. 1: 21) - God “created in stages” and produced marine life according to the fossil record without any missing link (I. e., crustaceans, shellfish, mollusks). Do these animals have souls? (Gen. 1: 20) - God brought forth living creatures. Hebrew translation = “nephesh” = soul, which indicates that animals have souls. The word “nephesh” for soul exists in scripture in reference to animal life, but not plant life (sorry “Tree Huggers”), Yet, I do interpret this to assert that animal life has intelligence. (Gen. 1: 21) - “Great Sea Monsters” = in Hebrew - “Long extended things. In the KJV they are called, “whales”. Some attribute this verse to proof of the existence of mythical beings such as the “Loch Ness” in Scotland. (Gen. 1: 22) - God pronounced them as “Good”, which means, “in line or accordance with His Divine Purpose and Divine Character”. Here for the first time “God Blessed them”. The reproductive process starts (“sex”). “Bless” = desire and choice in the sexual reproduction of the animal kingdom. Genesis is like a “Table of Contents” for the remainder of the Bible. Still, the physical projects into the spiritual kingdom, which surrounds us on every side (where TRUE REALITY exists).

QUICK SUMMARY of Creative Days:

SECTION of GENESIS VISIBLE (Physical) REALITY INVISIBLE (Spiritual) REALITY

(Metaphysical Form / Foundation) CREATIVE DAY
GEN. 1: 1-5 Light and Darkness Good and Evil (Necessity of Choice) DAY ONE
GEN. 1: 6-8 Sky and Ocean Unseen Life and Visible Life DAY TWO
GEN. 1: 9-12 (Physical Humanity) Seas and Dry Land

(Land bearing vegetation) Ocean (Barren) + Fruitful (Land)

Regenerate, Life - Bearing = Humanity in Christ DAY THREE
GEN. 1: 14-19 Sun and Moon Lord Jesus + Regenerate Humanity

(Church’s Function) DAY FOUR
GEN. 1: 20-23 God Created Life in Seas and Sky and He Blessed Them Living in perpetual, continual spiritual blessing amidst a hostile creation. Akin to the Ocean and Sky being hostile environments to human kind. Man’s life cannot sustain itself there for too long (Icarus Theory = If an individual tries to operate as a Christian in the energy of the flesh, alone - He will Fall; Yet, Man will drown if he tries to live in water = worldly). Yet, Peter could walk on water ONLY when he obeyed His Lord in Faith DAY FIVE

Well, not really. The “very good” comes in v31 when G-d looks upon "everything that He had made, and behold it was very good " (kol asher ahsah v’hineh-tov moèd). This is the last thing said (whereby G-d himself did not say it; it is reported) about all of creation, not just man & woman, and then He rested.

Still, our understanding of what was meant by the word in this account translated as “dominion” has been terribly misused and abused, as the connotation of stewardship is strong therein, but was (perhaps) conveniently ignored.

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Or, perhaps not. A lot depends on how one reads the text.

The man & woman are charged with attending to the earth (haAretz), but the actual verbs used are interesting in their own right. They are to “subdue (KBSh, kabash) it” and “rule (RDH, radah) over it”. The former word also means “bring into bondage” and is the verb used for “rape” (of a woman); the latter in its connotation of “govern” has a nuance of oppression, at least according to Hebrew scholars.

Of course, as Stan Tenen has pointed out and we have elsewhere discussed, there may be something quite different going on here in the text than the conventional interpreters may wish to acknowledge.

Merely food for thought.

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BTW, as a possible linguistic sidenote:

The masculine singular imperative (command form) of the verb KBSh, would be k’BOSH. The root of the phrase, “to put the kibosh on something”, meaning to squelch someone or something, is unknown (per the dictionary), but it could be found here. My guess would be that it snuck in through Yiddish. Dickens used it in “Sketches by Boz”.

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GEN. 1: 24-26 Sixth Day - Animals and Humankind:

Born to Reign

ESSENTIAL TRUTH : And yet, Man is on the path of destroying the very Earth he was puy here to protect. How does this measure with evolution? We are called to be in dominion on the spiritual level, too! Not just helpless victims of circumstance. A Disciple of Christ is to Reign in Life! The circumstances are sent by the faith. (Gen. 1: 24-26) *

  • The 6th Day of creation is parallel, in some respects to the 3rd Day, and like it, is a double day. It has, as do all days, an evening and a morning, and during the evening (which always comes first in the order of Scripture) we have an account of the creation of the land animals. God creates land-dwelling creatures. The animal kingdoms were made in creative “stages and leaps” = according to their kind. Land creatures are aiming toward Man. (Gen. 1: 26) - What is the image of Man? What is the likeness of Man? It certainly differs from that of the animal kingdom in very “special” ways! Differences in Man’s Creation : Man appeared only AFTER God counseled with the other members of the Triune Godhead - “Let us make man…,”. God created everything else as a single unity. Yet, with Man - Man was created by the “Elohim” (the Hebrew for 3 Godhead) - the plural for “of God”. (Gen. 1: 27) - In His image connotes singular and plural. Hence, only men of all creatures on Earth can enter into the Triune nature of the Godhead. Pretty special, I’d say! Man appeared as Mediator between God and creation. Just as Adam is Mediator between God and all animal life. What is Man’s relation to the animal world? Darwin says that man is the most progressive state of animal evolution - “Am I my Keeper’s Brother? Ha! He comes up with a whole genealogy from apes to Neanderthal, to Homo Erectus. Yet, there is no evidence that links Man to animals. The gap between Man and ape is as wide as the gap between ape and amoeba. The links are STILL missing. Hear the Evolutionists cry : Jacobson Stern = “ There is no evidence that links a stage of evolved ape to Man which postulates the fossil record ”.*

Dr. J. M. Gillette = “There is no evidence that links Man with the animal world, only projections”. Species X. According to the Biblical account here, Man has a soul AND spirit. Animals only have souls. Man was created an immortal being. This doesn’t mean that Man cannot die, but that he need not die. Like Christ who dismissed His Spirit. Second Adam came to be what God intended for man. Redemption = Restoring one to what he once was (Spirit, Soul, Body). Even Adam’s body didn’t come from the animal world.

GEN: 1: 26-28 The Glory and the Misery of Man

ESSENTIAL TRUTH : We are Spirits dwelling oin bodies. Fundamentally, Man is an invisible spirit. He possesses the faculties of the Spirit, incl., Creativity, Communication, and Moral Consciousness. The Image of Man = Spirit of God, and the Likeness of Man = Functioning of the Spirit. (Gen. 1: 26-28) - The difference between what man COULD be versus what man IS. Following the Kantian model of inquiry, this section of Genesis addresses four main questions: What can I KNOW?; What can I DO?; What may I HOPE?; What IS Man? The last question reminds me of a fragment of Edwin Markam’s poem, “The Man with the Hoe”:

Is this the thing the Lord God made, and gave

To have dominion over sea and land?

To trace the stars and search the heavens for power

And feel the passion of eternity?

Perhaps, G. K. Chesterton says it best (whom I consider a 19th century C. S. Lewis) when he aptly observed, “What ever else is true of man, it is certainly true that man is not what he was meant to be.” (Gen. 1: 27) - What is this image of God in man? Body? Soul? No. This he shares with the animal kingdom. To be created “in His own image” connotes that there is a source of glory and dignity in mankind. This was NEVER said of any other creature! What are the functions of the soul? Rationality - Feeling - Thinking - Choice? No. Animals also function this this way. What is it that man has which gives him distinction from the animals? To explore this question further, I looked to the NT and found the answer in John 4 in Christ’s interaction with the woman at the well and revealed to her that “God is Spirit and must be worshipped in Spirit and Truth.” God is a Spirit without a Body - until Christ. From here, I started to focus on the faculties of the Spirit which animals DO NOT possess and, therefore makes Man “Special” among all creation. I was able to isolate 3 main faculties of the Spirit of God which man inherited in both image and likeness: (i) Creativity = imagination, abstract thinking, seeing with the “eye” of the mind, fashioning and making things , composing a symphony. (ii) Communication = speaking, conveying ideas, discussion of matters. God’s “speak” conveyed power in creation in the same way that words affect us and change us . Words can wreck lives, injure, restore, heal, etc.

(iii) Moral Consciousness = To declare things “Good” or “Evil”. A consciousness of moral values. Whether the post-modernists admit tot it or not, we all feel the gnawing of a moral consciousness. What did God want man to DO with Spiritual faculties? (Gen. 1: 28) - Be fruitful, multiply, fill the earth. Also, subdue it and have dominion over God’s creation. Man has never forgotten this commandment and has been failing in trying to accomplish this all throughout history. Instead, man has filled the earth to the point of overpopulation. In the mid - 20th century, Stanford Univ. Professors predicted that there would be no 21st century. Gebser’s Stages of the evolution of human consciousness have only illustrated stagnant patterns of man’s consciousness oscillating between prolonged adolescence into a premature senility. In spite of this, God made man after His “likeness” (functioning). Man has made a perversion of exercising his ability to be God-like. The Key for reversing this lies in man’s conscious willingness to undergo the repudiation of self-confidence resting on the work of another who dwells within. Even Jesus declared that without God, “The Son can do nothing of himself”.

Mary,

You are aware that when I asked if you were a “weirdo”, that I meant it as a compliment. :smile:

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GEN. 1: 27-31 Sex and Food

ESSENTIAL TRUTH : ***The Law of Sex is manifest in 3 different ways. On the physical level, it manifests by the familiar act that is the subject of so much discussion everywhere today. On the soulish (or psychological) level, it is manifest as an urge to communicate with or to share the thoughts of another, thus it is largely expressed in terms of friendship, or close companionship; the need for acceptance by other individuals.

(Like here at COSMOS - this is just one Big 'Ol psycho-sexual Brothel, if you ask me! Sex that is both Satisfying and Safe. I am a “pure” harlot when it comes to this particular manifestation of sex, as it is my most preferred type of intimacy.)

A 3rd manifestation of the strange power of sex is the power or function of worship. Worship, too, is sex; but sex manifested at the level of the spirit. It is a strange and mysterious hunger to interchange with the Divine Being, to become part with Him, to share His nature and experience the ecstasy and joy of the union.*** Putting together this exhaustive exposition of the Scriptures was a very sexually active endeavor! My Spirit was often overwhelmed, yet, I couldn’t get enough.

SEX

Previously, Genesis illustrated that man did not arise from the animal creation. (Gen. 1: 27) - We are created in His Spiritual image and likeness and, unlike the animal kingdom, this specialized status in creation imbibes us with shared characteristics of the Divine Triune Godhead, as it is expressed via our Creativity, Communication, and Moral Consciousness . This gives us a type of DERIVED AUTHORITY over creation. Yet with a VERY CRUCIAL CONDITION - Man has Dominion ONLY to the extent that he is subject to God.

Man has lost his “Godlikeness” and it makes him the MOST DANGEROUS ANIMAL ON THE PLANET. (Gen. 1: 27) - Sex starts in humankind. At the first mention of man, God also signifies sex. God created humankind with both a male AND female nature. The woman DID NOT appear as a separate entity of man. Adam was, for a while, incorporating the psychological characteristics of “man” AND “woman”. Adam was (for a while) a male/female being - NOT physically but psychologically. Hence, every man has within him, a female shadow AND vice versa. Eve was not created until Gen. 2: 18, Yet, there was already an “inner marriage” within the human soul. Science shows us that the male possesses female recessive traits and the female has male recessive traits.

Sex is also expressed in a triune manifestation, as it occurs on all 3 levels. The Physical = Intercourse; Mental = Relating/Friendship; Spiritual = Worship. Worship is sexual interchange with God in its equivalent desire to exalt Him.

The Second Adam, Jesus, was also psychologically male/female and He combined perfectly with His sexual nature. Jesus expressed a most balanced sternness and strength with tenderness and gentleness . All races started with Adam. Thus, Christ also shares cultural distinctions of all nations within His own race. SEE Gal. 3 - “There is neither Jew nor Gentile, slave/free, male/female”. All Christians are descendants of Abraham (in Christ).

FOOD

_(Gen. 1: 29) - Adam’s food was the seed plant (bread bearing) and fruit trees (wine), whilst animals were given plants. This food issue for animals, however, complicates the fossil record in which scientists portray animals to be carnivores. Yet, BEFORE “The Fall”, animals had plants as a food source. In the original food chain before “The Fall”, animals were strictly herbivores and there was no competitive striving for “survival of the fittest”. (SEE Isaiah - “animals shall eat straw with the ox”). AFTER “The Fall” of Adam, the food chain was also cursed and “survival of the fittest” became necessary for posterity of individual species (Ex. squirrels start hiding their nuts). Yet, animal’s instinct is smarter than fallen man’s instinct. Just watch “Nat Geo” on any given evening. If you abandon a human child in the wild, natural world, he/she will develop to be more “bestial” than the animal nature. Man is fallen because “man shall not live by bread alone", as Christ Our Lord verily stated. Hence, even food and nourishment must be provided and consumed on all 3 levels. “Seek ye FIRST the Kingdom of God and all His Righteousness, THEN…” - eat, drink, be fruitful and multiply. Spiritual food is a priori to man’s survival BEFORE physical and mental nourishment can be of any benefit.*_

Thanks Katina! Though I hope I haven’t lost my shine after that long gap of not posting – I was away last weekend, and it’s taken me some time to catch up.

I would say that most of my friends aren’t Christian in any way – Quebec in particular is a very secular society. I treasure them all, and I learn from them – some of them might be surprised to hear that I’ve learned how to be Christian from them! But from time to time I run into what I think of as a language gap, where the most natural way to explain myself would involve talking God. I figure they have to accept that, and almost always they do.

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So true! Ironically, Christ has used the secular community as the primary training ground for developing genuine Christ-like love ans Spirit within my own experience. The only instance in which this gets esp. challenging for me is when I am engaging with close family members. Esp. my “Elders”. (Actually, I don’t really have any family). Those in my neck of the wood - have some kind of strange aversion towards “perpetual enthusiasm” for the Word and Spirit. It baffles me!

I admit that it is my fault for neglecting regular church attendance for the past two years. Church folks make me feel icky, Mary. Instead, I strive to BE a church. My body is the building, my mind is the Word and my heart, I suppose is the worship and fellowship.

Yet, I do miss you when you are away. What is it like to be the child of a Shepherd? I’ve always wanted to be the child of a Pastor or the wife of one. I suppose that its not too late for the latter. Its not that I have any particular attraction to “Men of the Cloth” - I just would love to be in the constant company of someone whose heart and mind is devoted to Christ. I even considered joining a Coven once. Like , as a housemother in an orphanage. I had trouble finding a legit opportunity and gave up on the dream. Do you think it is too late?

*GOD’S PROVISION- (Genesis 1: 29 - 31)

ESSENTIAL TRUTH : Every human being has a tripartite struggle going on within his body, soul and spirit of a sexual nature. This is also true of our nutritional need for bread. Yet, our survival is limited if we seek only after the bread which feeds the body and neglect the priority of God’s spiritual nourishment, found in the Bread of Life via Our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. .

(Gen. 1: 26 - 28) - Thus far, the preceding verses revealed what distinguishes man from all other creation (in particular, the Animal Kingdom), as well as, what is Man (“That Thou art Mindful of Us”) and what is Man’s purpose (Gen. 1: 26c) . Man is not blind to his own purpose. Nor is man a mere “part” of the Animal Kingdom, but rather, a starting point, directly created by God. Man has a distinct triune nature which differs from animal creation. Man’s relation to animal creation is limited to soul and body. In Spirit, however, man was created in God’s Image. That image and function of God’s triune Spirit is expressed via man in his creativity, communication and moral consciousness.

(Gen. 1: 26d) - Man’s dominion over God’s creation is purely conditional to the fact that it is “ DERIVED DOMINION ”. (Gen. 1: 27) - addresses human sexuality as being pervasive throughout our entire triune nature and being. Sex is also expressed in a tripartite fashion, as follows: Physical Sex = The act of intercourse; Psychological (Soulistic) Sex = The desire to relate to and communicate with others (be accepted by others) via friendship, discourse, etc.; Spiritual Sex = The desire to worship and/or share in and express the Divine nature of the Godhead.

*God’s Sexual Provision - Man’s source of sexual provision is found in the First Adam. (Gal. 3) - A Christian’s nature (before The Fall) is (was) a perfectly mirrored balance of both male and female natures . The New Humanity’s source of God’s sexual provision is revealed upon being born again of the Holy Spirit, into the salvation of Christ and under His Eternal Lordship (To the Glory of God the Father, Amen!), which can be found in the Second Adam .

*God’s Nutritional Provision - Adam’s original food source (before The Fall) was derived from seed-bearing plants (Gen. 1: 29-30). Even the animals’ food source was limited to green plant vegetation, as the first animals of creation were herbivores (providing scriptural evidence refuting Darwinian “Survival of the Fittest”). God planned and balanced a perfect quantity and quality in providing for man’s bodily and energy needs in His acts of creation. Hence, there was no need for a competitive, self-preserving nature in Adam to “hunt and gather” for food to meet his basic survival needs. God ALREADY provided EVERYTHING that both Man AND the animals need(ed) for food and nutritional sustenance!

(Gen. 1: 29) - “See I have given you every plant yielding seed that is upon the face of all the Earth, and every tree with seed in its fruit. You shall have them for food”. The oceans and land were plush with green plant vegetation to feed the beasts and animals, as the seed-bearing plants were cultivated and in full bloom for Man to have bread from the grains of the Earth. Yet, “ man cannot live on bread alone, but by every Word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God ”. In pre-Fallen Creation, Adam was free of the anxiety which accompanies our post-Fallen, survival-based queries such as, “What shall we eat?, What shall we drink?, What shall we wear? God’s desire to provide remains the same after The Fall (as He even sacrificed His own animal creation to make clothing for our covering as we exited the “Garden”. Christ echoes His Father’s desire to provide for mankind when He lovingly exhorts us in Matthew to “Be not anxious for what you will eat or drink” and reassures that “ all these things will be yours as well” AFTER seeking ye, first the Kingdom and all His Righteousness”. Per heeding these instructions, we need not even search, nor be anxious for our bodily need for food and drink.

Haha, what I remember most about growing up in a church family was the total lack of boundaries between social and professional life. For a pastor, your parishioners are also your friends – it’s part of your job to take them out to coffee and hear about their struggles, whether it’s alcohol, a broken marriage, ailing parents, wayward children. The hours are the farthest thing from nine to five, a sudden funeral can ruin your vacation plans, and people who don’t like your sermons will say vicious things to you. So… worth it I guess, but like many things, messy and hard!

You say it isn’t too late to be a “pastor’s wife” but what I’m hearing from your writing is that you may have a call for your own ministry. If you could only find a church community that fit well, there is a desperate need for lay leadership, for preaching and Christian education. I don’t know whether you’d find out that you enjoyed it – but I can certainly tell you’d be capable of it!

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"the actual verbs used are interesting in their own right. They are to “subdue (KBSh, kabash) it” and “rule (RDH, radah) over it”

Thank you for bringing your linguistic expertise in! I was curious about how much interpretation the translators had allowed themselves.

Every now and then, reading a sacred text we come across these phrases that seem very problematic, and I think “subdue and rule” is one of them. I would not consider this a healthy attitude vis-à-vis creation. Societies that see themselves as part of creation, fitting in to the realities of nature, are I think better equipped to live on this Earth without damaging it and ourselves.

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And I took it as one :slight_smile:

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Umberto Eco said that “translation is the art of failure”. That might be a bit pointed, but he does have a point. When it comes to religious texts – especially those considered “scripture” by their followers – it is not too much to say that every translation is an interpretation.

Given the timing and circumstances of their appearance, and the structure of the original language itself (semantic roots, relative tenses of verbs, and more), I think this is especially true of the Tanakh (the Jewish scriptures, which is not exactly the same as what many Christians consider to be the “Old Testament”). The original language is vastly different than, say, Western languages in general (even their Old versions), and it is certainly very different from modern languages, including Modern Hebrew.

Even reading multiple translations (and there are no fewer than 100 Modern English translations, and that doesn’t include partial translations for specific purposes) can mitigate the issue somewhat, but one must always keep in mind that these various translations are often theologically (if not specifically christologically) motivated; that is, translations often reflect particular doctrinal biases. If you speak/read a foreign language, reading multiple translations in those different languages can also be helpful. (Just like the KJV is not the same as the NASB; the German Luther translation differs from, say, the German Jerusalem translation). For this reason, I, personally, don’t think it’s possible to get a truly deep understanding of the text without some (at least rudimentary, but the more the better) understanding of its original mode of expression. (The references verbs KBSh and RDH are very relevant cases in point.)

But what really gives me pause to reflect is that we all think we know what t-h-e original text is. As we saw in our CCafé sessions on the work of the Meru Foundation, the Torah (at least, but more likely more of the original Tanakh texts) were written as a single string of 304,805 letters: no spaces between words, no punctuation, no vowels (Hebrew letters are all consonants); and that string had to be parsed. We were only talking, for the most part about the first segment of 28 letters (which are generally considered to be the first verse of Genesis), and there are over 900 Rabbinic readings of that string alone. But what our discussion further revealed, there may a number of deeply profound and significant things happening in the text that would be worthwhile to include in one’s ruminations on “what it all means”.

And I couldn’t agree more, but at the same time we have to wonder why these words are used and not others. There is a branch of Kabbalistic thinking that approaches the matter at the letter level, postulating that each letter is imbued with deeper meaning than just its name (e.g., the Hebrew Dalet (analogous to our “D”) means “door”) or its number value (which for Dalet is 4, and which forms the basis for the hermeneutic known as Gematria). According to this approach, KBSh means something like “reception/acquisition of (the notion of) container reveals the Spirit of G-d” … perhaps “subdue” with the idea of truly getting a handle on a notion or idea; and RDH would mean something like “the Cosmic container (all that is) given physical existence brings forth life” … perhaps “dominion” in the sense of mastery via deep knowing. Just something to think about.

In the end, I think there’s simply a whole lot more in the text than we suspect.

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