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Genesis 10:8-12

Context

10:8 Cush was the father of 1  Nimrod; he began to be a valiant warrior on the earth. 10:9 He was a mighty hunter 2  before the Lord. 3  (That is why it is said, “Like Nimrod, a mighty hunter before the Lord.”) 10:10 The primary regions 4  of his kingdom were Babel, 5  Erech, 6  Akkad, 7  and Calneh 8  in the land of Shinar. 9  10:11 From that land he went 10  to Assyria, 11  where he built Nineveh, 12  Rehoboth-Ir, 13  Calah, 14  10:12 and Resen, which is between Nineveh and the great city Calah. 15 

1 tn Heb “fathered.” Embedded within Cush’s genealogy is an account of Nimrod, a mighty warrior. There have been many attempts to identify him, but none are convincing.

2 tn The Hebrew word for “hunt” is צַיִד (tsayid), which is used on occasion for hunting men (1 Sam 24:12; Jer 16:16; Lam 3:15).

3 tn Another option is to take the divine name here, לִפְנֵי יִהוָה (lifne yÿhvah, “before the Lord [YHWH]”), as a means of expressing the superlative degree. In this case one may translate “Nimrod was the greatest hunter in the world.”

4 tn Heb “beginning.” E. A. Speiser, Genesis (AB), 67, suggests “mainstays,” citing Jer 49:35 as another text where the Hebrew noun is so used.

5 tn Or “Babylon.”

6 sn Erech (ancient Uruk, modern Warka), one of the most ancient civilizations, was located southeast of Babylon.

7 sn Akkad, or ancient Agade, was associated with Sargon and located north of Babylon.

8 tn No such place is known in Shinar (i.e., Babylonia). Therefore some have translated the Hebrew term כַלְנֵה (khalneh) as “all of them,” referring to the three previous names (cf. NRSV).

9 sn Shinar is another name for Babylonia.

10 tn The subject of the verb translated “went” is probably still Nimrod. However, it has also been interpreted that “Ashur went,” referring to a derivative power.

11 tn Heb “Asshur.”

12 sn Nineveh was an ancient Assyrian city situated on the Tigris River.

13 sn The name Rehoboth-Ir means “and broad streets of a city,” perhaps referring to a suburb of Nineveh.

14 sn Calah (modern Nimrud) was located twenty miles north of Nineveh.

15 tn Heb “and Resen between Nineveh and Calah; it [i.e., Calah] is the great city.”



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