theology

Journal Watch

10/20/2010

“And it came to pass, when they were in the field, that Cain rose up against Abel his brother, and slew him.” Thus the Book of Genesis — indeed the Tanach, the Hebrew Scriptures — begins its human narrative with nothing less than the murder of a brother by a brother. Genesis is all about family conflict and reconciliation — almost always sibling-to-sibling conflict — setting the pattern for the community- and nation-building of Exodus. Much of Jewish tradition is a forth-and-back between sibling hostility and sibling harmony.

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