Religion Case Study

Passage 1

The first passage is an excerpt from the Bible: Genesis 1:1. It expounds on how the world was made according to the connotations of the books of Torah. Torah means the first five books of the Bible written by Moses. Torah in literal translation says “the beginning” which is synonymous with how the world began. The significance of the passage is to provide a detailed account of the religious belief from Christianity and Judaism of how the world began. The interpretation of how the world began is different for other religions including Buddhism. However, the importance of this passage provides an in-depth understanding of the belief that major religious factions including Islam believe about God and creation. It was God who made the earth, and it began by saying “let there be light.”

Passage 2

The second passage is borrowed from the Holy Bible. It is a passage denoting the promise that God gave to Noah and his sons after the flood. The passage decodes that God gave authority to man over any creature that roams the earth including the beasts of the earth and the birds of the air. The significance of the passage is to elaborate on the superiority that man has over the animals on planet. In the belief that God is the Almighty, and His power to authorize a man to consume what is on earth provides a detailed account of the great responsibility that man possess. However, there are repercussions. God places warning to man that he is accountable for his actions including those of consuming an animal, that of his actions towards himself and others. For any blood that is shed, man is responsible for the activities. “Whoever sheds the blood of man by man shall his blood be shed.”  It is not clear what this phrase means, and it is subject to interpretation, but it is clear that for any death caused by man it is a direct death to God because man is made in the image of God.

Passage 3

This passage is derived from Cohen’s article, “Be Fertile and Increase” (Cohen, 88). It is clear that the passage is a derivation of the story in the bible about Samuel’s mother, Hannah. Hannah in the Bible was barren for the longest time ever and was questioning her reason for being a woman and alive. Cohen’s intentional quotation of the story from the Bible is a clear depiction of the challenges that women also faced in the adage times. Therefore, Cohen’s most important message is that believing is the greatest weapon any person can possess in this world and they can use to pray for what they desire. Eventually, Hannah bears a son who is regarded as the greatest Priests of the Bible.

Passage 4

In Hebrew, beth is the first word in Hebrew which means that God is of two worlds: the heavens and the earth and He is the king of both. As such, interpretations of the term beth in Hebrew and Christianity on what is Alef. Alef is the second term in Hebrew which means breath of God which is denoted as a blessing (Berekhah).

Essay Question

P’shat means ‘simple’ while d’rash means ‘concept.’ The terms have been used from the early times in Jewish traditions to denounce other Faiths from Judaism including Christianity (Signer 5). But, in modern times the two terms have been collaboratively used to synchronize the similarities between Christianity and Judaism.



Work Cited

Signer, Michael A. “How the Bible has been interpreted in Jewish tradition.” New Interpreter’s Bible 1 (1994): 65-82.

Cohen, Jeremy. Be Fertile and increase, fill the earth and master it: the ancient and medieval career of a biblical text. Cornell Univ Pr, 1989; 88.

Bible. New King James Version. Thomas Nelson. 1982.