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Featured To Hebrew experts: did Eve sleep with the Serpent?

Discussion in 'Biblical Debates' started by Estro Felino, Sep 5, 2019.

  1. Fool

    Fool ALL in all
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    IT's an example of people being portrayed as a serpent allegorically. Favorable or not, isn't the point.

    You're thinking dualistically in the face of facts.
     
  2. dybmh

    dybmh Terminal Optimist
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    Your examples aren't allegories? And mine are?
     
  3. Fool

    Fool ALL in all
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    Life is not black and white. It's full spectrum

    Proverbs 4:27.

    The story is used convey an idea through the story telling. Like Brerr rabbit stories
     
  4. dybmh

    dybmh Terminal Optimist
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    Sure. But where we disagree is whether or not a serpent ( nachash ) is the same as a prophet ( navi ) in the Torah. Also, we disagree on whether or not Judaism is borrowed from somewhere else.

    Right?
     
  5. Fool

    Fool ALL in all
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    No, you believe in talking snakes all you wish
     
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  6. Muffled

    Muffled Jesus in me

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    I believe that is a scientific fantasy.
     
  7. Muffled

    Muffled Jesus in me

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    You don't have any highland Scottish? I believe that is Atlantean.
     
  8. Muffled

    Muffled Jesus in me

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    I believe it is quite likely. Everyone is well mixed these days.
     
  9. Muffled

    Muffled Jesus in me

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    I believe since they were naked, she saw it all the time but probably didn't think it was for anything but pissing against a tree.
     
  10. Ehav4Ever

    Ehav4Ever Well-Known Member

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    To answer your question. The concept being described about the snake, of that time, defiling Hawah (Eve) in some way is not something that is from Jewish Torah based/Hebrew based texts. It is something sourced out of Christianity. Where the author of James gets this claim is, who knows but not from the Hebrew text of the Torah or from legitmate Jewish sources.
     
  11. dybmh

    dybmh Terminal Optimist
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    There's Midrash about it...
     
  12. Ehav4Ever

    Ehav4Ever Well-Known Member

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    Which Midrash and where?
     
  13. Terry Sampson

    Terry Sampson Well-Known Member

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    Nice try, kid, ... but you can't pin that rap on us Christians. Besides, anybody who knows anything knows we get our most exciting stuff from the Jews. :D
    • This thread began with a quoted portion of "The Proto-Gospel of James", also called "The Infancy Gospel of James", Chapter 13, [see XIII,] Infancy Gospel of James, or Protevangelium (M.R. James translation)]to wit:
      • 1. Now it was the sixth month with her, and behold Joseph came from his building, and he entered into his house and found her great with child.
        • And he smote his face, and cast himself down upon the ground on sackcloth and wept bitterly, saying: "With what countenance shall I look unto the Lord my God?
        • and what prayer shall I make concerning this maiden?
        • for I received her out of the temple of the Lord my God a virgin, and have not kept her safe.
        • Who is he that hath ensnared me?
        • Who hath done this evil in mine house and hath defiled the virgin?
        • Is not the story of Adam repeated in me?
        • for as at the hour of his giving thanks the serpent came and found Eve alone and deceived her, so hath it befallen me also.
      • 2. And Joseph arose from off the sackcloth and called Mary and said unto her "O thou that wast cared for by God, why hast thou done this?
        • thou hast forgotten the Lord thy God.
        • Why hast thou humbled thy soul, thou that wast nourished up in the Holy of Holies and didst receive food at the hand of an angel?
      • 3. But she wept bitterly, saying: I am pure and I know not a man.
        • And Joseph said unto her: Whence then is that which is in thy womb?
        • and she said: As the Lord my God liveth, I know not whence it is come unto me.
    • The actual, Christian, scriptural account of Jesus' conception and the Virgin Birth is recorded in two locations: [source: Virgin birth of Jesus - Wikipedia]
      • Matthew 1:18-25
        The Gospels of Matthew and Luke agree that Mary's husband was named Joseph, that he was of the Davidic line, and that he played no role in Jesus's divine conception, but beyond this they are very different. Matthew underlines the virginity of Mary by references to the Book of Isaiah (using the Greek translation in the Septuagint, rather than the mostly Hebrew Masoretic Text) and by his narrative statement that Joseph had no sexual relations with her until after the birth (a choice of words which leaves open the possibility that they did have relations after that).

        18: Now the birth of Jesus the Messiah took place in this way. When his mother Mary had been engaged to Joseph, but before they lived together, she was found to be with child from the Holy Spirit.
        19: Her husband Joseph, being a righteous man and unwilling to expose her to public disgrace, planned to dismiss her quietly.
        20: But just when he had resolved to do this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, "Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary as your wife, for the child conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit.
        21: She will bear a son, and you are to name him Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins."
        22: All this took place to fulfill what had been spoken by the Lord through the prophet:
        23: "Look, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and they shall name him Emmanuel," which means, "God is with us."
        24: When Joseph awoke from sleep, he did as the angel of the Lord commanded him; he took her as his wife,
        25: but had no marital relations with her until she had borne a son; and he named him Jesus.
      • Luke 1:26-38
        Luke introduces Mary as a virgin, describes her puzzlement at being told she will bear a child despite her lack of sexual experience, and informs the reader that this pregnancy is to be effected through God's Holy Spirit.

        26: In the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent by God to a town in Galilee called Nazareth,
        27: to a virgin engaged to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David. The virgin's name was Mary.
        28: And he came to her and said, "Greetings, favored one! The Lord is with you."
        29: But she was much perplexed by his words and pondered what sort of greeting this might be.
        30: The angel said to her, "Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God.
        31: And now, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you will name him Jesus.
        32: He will be great, and will be called the Son of the Most High, and the Lord God will give to him the throne of his ancestor David.
        33: He will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of his kingdom there will be no end."
        34: Mary said to the angel, "How can this be, since I am a virgin?"
        35: The angel said to her, "The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; therefore the child to be born will be holy; he will be called Son of God.
        36: And now, your relative Elizabeth in her old age has also conceived a son; and this is the sixth month for her who was said to be barren.
        37: For nothing will be impossible with God."
        38: Then Mary said, "Here am I, the servant of the Lord; let it be with me according to your word." Then the angel departed from her.
    • IMO, the Proto-/Infancy Gospel of James is important and relevant in a discussion about the Christian Doctrine of the Incarnation for two reasons:
      • The Infancy Gospel is believed to be a 2nd century account of the conception of Jesus, and
      • It is an early Christian account of the Temptation and Fall of Eve and Adam.
      • More importantly, the Proto-/Infancy Gospel alerts us to the existence of a pre-Christian, Jewish account of the Temptation and Fall of Eve and Adam, that I hope to show has profound impact on the Christian Doctrines of the Incarnation, the Trinity, and Original Sin.
    • To facilitate an understanding of "the flow of oral and written traditions" involved in my version of this story, I came up with the following diagram which I posted in "To Hebrew experts: did Eve sleep with the serpent?"
      • [​IMG]
    (To be continued)
     
  14. Terry Sampson

    Terry Sampson Well-Known Member

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    Toodlin' through the cyber-world, I came across some sample myths from Howard Schwartz's book, "Tree of Souls: The Mythology of Judaism" (Oxford University Press, 2004).
    One of the myths, found @ FROM BOOK NINE, MYTHS OF EXILE , is #572:

    572. HOW CAIN WAS CONCEIVED
    Samael was the great prince in heaven. After God created the world, Samael took his band of followers and descended and saw the creatures that God had created. Among them he found none so skilled to do evil than the serpent, as it is said, Now the serpent was the shrewdest of all the wild beasts (Gen. 3:1). Its appearance was something like that of a camel, and Samael mounted and rode upon it. Riding on the serpent, the angel Samael came to Eve in the night and seduced her, and she conceived Cain. Later, while Eve was pregnant by the angel, Adam came to her, and she conceived Abel. Others say it was the serpent himself who seduced Eve, for after he saw Adam and Eve coupling, the serpent conceived a passion for her. He even imagined killing Adam and marrying Eve. So he came to Eve when she was alone and possessed her and infused her with lust. That is how the serpent fathered Cain, who was later to slay his own brother. And that is how Eve was infected with his impurity. As a result, all of Israel was impure from that time until the Torah was given on Mount Sinai. Only then did Israel’s impurity cease.

    What I found VERY interesting is that (a) Schwartz is a Professor of English at the University of Missouri-St. Louis, (b) a fairly well-known and -praised author Welcome to Howard Schwartz on the Web , and (c) he cited the sources for his Myth #572. Here they are:
    1. Targum Pseudo-Yonathan on Genesis 4:1;
    2. B. Shabbat 145b-146a;
    3. B. Sota 9b;
    4. B. Yevamot 103b;
    5. B. Avodah Zarah 22b;
    6. Genesis Rabbah 18:6;
    7. Pirkei de-Rabbi Eliezer 13, 21, and 22;
    8. Zohar 1:28b, 1:36b-137a, 1:54a, 1:55a; 1:243b, 2:52a;
    9. Magen Avot 53.
    Now, I'm not a Hebrew Expert by a long shot, but I was able to actually locate Sources #2, #3, #4, #5, and #6. #2 through #5 are from the Babylonian Talmud, and #6 is from the Midrash. I'm not sure when they were "compiled". Seems unreasonable to think they may have been influenced by a Christian story like the one recorded in the Proto-Gospel of James was written. On the other hand, I can't help but wonder if the Proto-Gospel of James version of the Adam/Eve/Serpent interaction may have had its source among non-Christian Jews.

    Here are my copies of the underlined sources:
    • B. Shabbat 145b-146a:
      • Rabbi Yoḥanan then explained to them: Why are gentiles ethically contaminated? It is because they did not stand on Mount Sinai. As when the snake came upon Eve, i.e., when it seduced her to eat from the Tree of Knowledge, it infected her with moral contamination, and this contamination remained in all human beings. When the Jewish people stood at Mount Sinai, their contamination ceased, whereas gentiles did not stand at Mount Sinai, and their contamination never ceased. Rav Aḥa, the son of Rava, said to Rav Ashi: What about converts? How do you explain the cessation of their moral contamination? Rav Ashi said to him: Even though they themselves were not at Mount Sinai, their guardian angels were present, as it is written: “It is not with you alone that I make this covenant and this oath, but with he that stands here with us today before the Lord our God, and with he that is not here with us today” (Deuteronomy 29:13–14), and this includes converts.
      • [Terry's Note: Gee, ... that kind of looks like the makings of "an Origin of the Christian doctrine of Original Sin" story from where I sit. We Gentiles just missed the cleansing effect of not having ancestors standing with the Israelites at Mount Sinai."
    • B. Sotah 9b:
      • And, so too, we found with regard to the primeval snake who seduced Eve, for he placed his eyes on that which was unfit for him, as he wanted to marry Eve. Consequently, that which he desired was not given to him, and that which was in his possession was taken from him. The Holy One, Blessed be He, said: I initially said that the snake will be king over every domesticated animal and non-domesticated animal, but now he is cursed more than all the domesticated animals and all the non-domesticated animals of the field, as it is stated: “And the Lord God said unto the serpent: Because you have done this, you are cursed from among all cattle, and from among all beasts of the field; upon your belly shall you go, and dust shall you eat all the days of your life” (Genesis 3:14).
      • The baraita explains the elements of this curse. I said that the snake will walk upright, but now he shall go on his belly; I said that his food will be the same as the food eaten by a person, but now he shall eat dust. The snake said: I will kill Adam and marry Eve, but now: “I will put enmity between you and the woman and between your seed and her seed” (Genesis 3:15).
      • [Terry's note: Yikes! The snake used walk on at least two legs and wanted to marry Eve? Sunday School could have been so much more interesting. Kids would have come from miles around to hear that story."
    • B. Yevamot 103b:
      • The Gemara answers: He implants filth in her and contaminates her, as her body accepts his semen. As Rabbi Yoḥanan also said, based on his understanding that the serpent seduced Eve into having sexual relations with him: When the serpent came upon Eve, he infected her with moral contamination, and this contamination remained in all human beings. When the Jewish people stood at Mount Sinai their contamination ceased, whereas with regard to gentiles, who did not stand at Mount Sinai, their contamination never ceased.
      • That underlined part sure looks to me like a possible original version of "the Serpent's Seed" story in the Proto-Gospel of James story that you opened your OP with, doesn't it?
    • B. Avodah Zarah 22b:
      • And if you wish, say instead: Even when he finds the wife, he also engages in bestiality with the animal, as the Master said: The animal of a Jew is more appealing to gentiles than their own wives, as Rabbi Yoḥanan says: At the time when the snake came upon Eve, at the time of the sin of her eating from the Tree of Knowledge, it infected her with moral contamination, and this contamination lingers in all human beings. The Gemara asks: If that is so, a Jew should also be suspected of engaging in bestiality. The Gemara answers: With regard to the Jewish people, who stood at Mount Sinai and received the Torah, their contamination ended, whereas in the case of gentiles, who did not stand at Mount Sinai and receive the Torah, their contamination has not ended.
      • [Terry's Note: From this ignorant Gentile's perspective, the B. Avodah Zarah section seemed--on a real quick scan--to mostly be about bestiality issues and whether Jews should buy animals from Gentiles, who apparently often preferred their animals to their wives.]
    • This last source merits a brief run-through of a couple of verses from Genesis:
      • Genesis 2:25 And they [Adam and Eve] were both naked, the man and his wife, and were not ashamed.
      • Genesis 3:1 Now the serpent was more subtle than any beast of the field which the LORD God had made.
      • Genesis 3:21 And the LORD God made for Adam and for his wife garments of skins, and clothed them.
      • Midrash Genesis Rabah 18:6 addresses the question "Why the big gap between Adam and Eve walking around naked (in 2:25) and God putting clothes on them (in 3:31). The explanation, as I understand it, was so that the author could work in the story of the serpent's temptation and Adam & Eve's "fall from grace" and not end there. Instead, God clothes Adam and Eve, which is a more positive note to end on.
      • From Midrash Genesis Rabah 18:6.
        • AND THEY WERE BOTH NAKED, AND WERE NOT ASHAMED .... NOW THE SERPENT WAS MORE SUBTLE, etc. Now Surely Scripture should have stated: “And the Lord God made for Adam and his wife garments of skin” (Gen. in, 2I)[1] [immediately after the former verse]? Said R. Joshua b. Karhah: It teaches you [2] through what sin that wicked creature inveigled them, viz. because he saw them engaged in their natural functions, he [the serpent] conceived a passion for her.[3] R. Jacob of Kefar Hanan said : It is thus written in order not to conclude with the passage on the serpent.[4]

          [1] The questioner holds that God made these garments before Adam sinned, and as a natural covering for their nakedness. But in that case it should immediately have followed this verse.
          [2] Viz. the interpolation about the serpent.
          [3] Hence he sought to encompass Adam's death through sin.
          [4] And the curse he brought. Therefore ' And the Lord God made . . . garments' is reserved for the ending, so as to conclude on the brighter note of God's care.
     
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  15. dybmh

    dybmh Terminal Optimist
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    B'reisheis Rabbah... I'll look it up :)
     
  16. rosends

    rosends Well-Known Member

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    I went through some of these sources (skipping the ones, like Avodah Zarah, which are, as you note, separate discussions of bestiality). Here is what I found:

    Tal Shabbat 146a/b -- the text speaks of "when the snake came upon Eve" -- the commentators are very clear in that this phrase is to be understood as "planted a bad thought in her mind". The snake's deception etc. was intellectual, not physical. Some even mention the understanding that it is physical and explicitly reject it.

    Tal. Sotah 9b -- the text indicates that the snake saw, and lusted after Eve. Nothing mentions that physicality happened though.

    Only in the explanation to Yevamot 103b did I see any mention -- apparently Rabbi Yochanan was of the opinion that the relationship was physically intimate so the text quotes his opinion as a stand alone position.

    The Targum Yonatan on Gen 4:1 actually says that Eve slept with Adam, she who had desired a child with the Angel of God (דַהֲוָה חֲמֵידַת לְמַלְאָכָא) and then she conceives and says that she has acquired a man, the Angel of the Lord.

    Cryptic. So I looked at the source of Rabbi Yochanan's opinion. He sees her statement in 3:13 that the snake deceived her as the important moment. This is recorded in Avodah Zarah 22b and connected by the Chidushei Agadot to a Rashi in Tal Nazir - ובנזיר הוסיף ביאור והיינו דקאמר לנחש כי עשית זאת איזה מעשה עשה אלא שבא על חוה כו' - but I still have to look up that one). He believes that her use of "hisi'ani", which the commentators almost unanimously explain as "deceived" (though there is argument about the nature of the deception), also hints to "nesu'in" or marriage (as noted in the Rashi to Tal. Shabbat 103b), so she was saying "he married me" which would be an allusion to sex. Strangely, the Targum Yonatan on 3:13, when given the opportunity to explain the word in a way which would indicate that says very explicitly "he tricked me with his intellect and his evil" and makes NO mention of marriage or sex.

    ---

    I looked up the Rashi in Nazir but he DOESN'T say what is attributed to him, or at least I haven't found that he said yet.
     
    #176 rosends, Apr 22, 2020
    Last edited: Apr 22, 2020
  17. dybmh

    dybmh Terminal Optimist
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    OK. It says the serpent intended to marry eve and take her. But it doesn't say it actually happened.
     
  18. BSM1

    BSM1 What? Me worry?

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    Very good explanation of this whole episode in The Urantia Book.
     
  19. Ehav4Ever

    Ehav4Ever Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for posting that. You beat me to it. I can add the following.

    First, let’s break down the claims made in the Proto Gospel of James, Chapter 13.

    upload_2020-4-22_16-23-29.png

    As, I will show below the above story from Proto James is a Christian invention. I.e. either from the original Jewish Christians or the later non-Jewish Christians. (Note: it is well known that the early Jewish Christians at some pointed seperated themselves from Torath Mosheh and went down a path that was more like the Essenes or as some scholars claim their origin may have been from the Essenes.)

    Berei****h Rabba 18:6 also makes no mention of the nachash having any kind of relations with Hawah (Eve). It instead only mentions the following.

    upload_2020-4-22_16-18-28.png
    The above makes no claim that the “while Adam was glorifying Hashem that the serpent found Hawah (Eve) alone and deceived and defined her” in the way that Joseph, as claimed in the Proto James, is considered to have happened to his wife.

    Further, in Yevomot 103b the following is stated:

    upload_2020-4-22_16-38-15.png

    It must be clear that the statement (הטל בה זומהא) does not mean that the nahash had relations with her. It means that it infected her with moral impurity. Also, stated the Hawah in this place is repersentative of the human race and it is dealin Avodah Zara (idolotry). (בה זומהא - וזומהא נשארה בבני אדם, ומזההמת את נשם) The word (זומהא) means filth, decayed matter, or moral impurity i.e. the nachash affected her behavior. It does mean that
     
    #179 Ehav4Ever, Apr 22, 2020
    Last edited: Apr 22, 2020
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  20. BSM1

    BSM1 What? Me worry?

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    Re: post #178
     
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