Well, what does this book do?
Book description: This translation of Genesis 1-11 follows the Hebrew text closely and leaves in what many translations leave out: physicality, ambiguity, repetition, even puns. Bray and Hobbins also draw deeply from the long history of Jewish and Christian interpretation. Their translation and notes offer the reader wisdom and delight.
Before I explain, I'd encourage you to read (or re-read) my recent interview with Samuel Bray. He goes over, in detail and with examples, what the book description says. Their motivation for writing this book should be encouragement enough for you to consider purchasing it. In addition, you will discover that the authors, who are both Protestant, are very ecumenical. There are references to the Douay, Knox, JB, NJB, and NABRE throughout. There is a great appreciation for Catholic biblical contributions within this book.
The book, itself, is divided into two distinct parts. The first part is the authors translation of Genesis 1-11 (although they include 12:1-9 as well). The translation is presented in a single column, paragraph style, with the chapter and verse numbering on the margins. Much like the Knox or Jerusalem Bible editions, this allows the text to flow very freely and encourage long chunks of reading. There are no paragraph headings, which is a good thing. The translation gives you a real flavor of the importance of repetition in the Hebrew text. The toledot formula ("These are the generations of....) is a clear example
of this. How often do we find it translated with some variation within the same translation? Many translations do not keep a consistency here, even though the formula appears six times in the first eleven chapters of Genesis (2:4, 5:1, 6:9, 10:1, 11:10, 27). It is examples like this which make this volume so very helpful.
|Notice the clear page layout and references at the bottom|
In conclusion, get this book. It contains both a ton of insights about the Hebrew of Genesis 1-11 and enough translation comparison information to keep you occupied for weeks, if not months. It is a great tool for your study of Genesis 1-11, which should be used beside your favorite translation and commentaries. Support this book so that more volumes will come out in the future.
Thank you Sam Bray, John Hobbins, and Glossahouse for providing me a copy for this book for an honest review.