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The Bible (Greek, “the little books”) constitutes a collection of writings understood to be sacred and essential for the life and worship of Judaism and Christianity. Most of these works are compilations of various oral and literary traditions ranging from the second millennium BCE through the second century CE. They reflect the life and narrative of various groups and sociopolitical contexts of a monotheistic religion taking on distinct qualities and notions of ritual and worship. The Book of Genesis expresses many of the themes which permeate the Bible as a whole. The account of the creation story (Gen.1–3) sets forth the creative powers of the Divine to bring about life ex nihilo (“out of nothing”). This is YHWH who is mighty and receives sacrifices from patrons to appease his temperament and persuade his actions in the mortal, material world: “And Noah built an altar (Hebrew, mzbch) unto the Lord… and offered burnt offerings on the altar. And the Lord smelled a sweet savor; and...
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