The Center for
Messianic Learning 

Unapologetically Pro-Torah
Unashamedly Pro-Israel
Irrevocably Zionist
“… out of Tziyon will go forth Torah, the word of ADONAI from Yerushalayim.”
(Isaiah 2:3)

If your life is not in jeopardy for what you believe, you’re probably on the wrong side!

Subscribe to The Center for Messianic Learning
Like this page? Share it. MeWe Logo ParlerLogo WimKin Logo CloutHub Others:Bookmark and Share

Mobile Users: The page will display properly if you hold your device in “landscape”
position and use your touch gesture to resize the page to fit your screen.

Please read the Introductory Notes to this commentary.

For a glossary of unfamiliar terms, CLICK HERE. For assistance in
pronouncing Hebrew terms, a pronunciation guide is located HERE.

The summary of the entire Torah is as simple as this:
Love what HaShem loves; hate what HaShem hates. All else is commentary.

בְּרֵאשִׁ֖ית • B'resheet
(“In Beginning” or “At First”)
The First Book of Moses,
Commonly Called


~ 11 ~

Parashah 2: Noach (Continued)
(Noach, Gen. 6:9-11:32)
(Small Roman numerals in the text indicate each 'aliyah.)

G. Dispersion of the Human Family (11:1-9)

1. Commonness of Mankind (11:1-2)

(vii) 1The whole earth had one language and a common form of speech.[1] 2As people migrated eastward,[2a] they found a plain in the land of Shin'ar,[2b] [MAP] and settled there.

2. Plan to Build a City (11:3-4)

3They said to one another, “Come, let’s make bricks and bake them thoroughly.”[3] So they used brick instead of stone, and tar instead of mortar. 4“Come,” they said, “let’s build ourselves a city, with a tower whose top reaches to the heavens,[4a] and let’s make a name for ourselves and not be scattered abroad on the surface of the whole earth.”[4b]

3. Attitude Displeases God (11:5-7)

5יְהוָה֒[GN] [YeHoVaH] came down to see the city and the tower that the sons of men were building. 6יְהוָה֒ said, “If they have begun to do this as one people speaking the same language, then nothing they decide to do will be beyond them. 7Come, let’s go down[7] there and confuse their language, so they will not understand one another’s speech.”

[Babel [MAP] 1765 BCE, 1996 AC]

4. Language Confused (11:8-9)

 8So יְהוָה֒ scattered them from there over the face of the whole earth,[8] and they stopped building the city. 9That is why it is called BavelBabel, confusion (by mixing), because there יְהוָה֒ confused the language of the whole world, and from there יְהוָה֒ scattered them abroad on the face of the whole earth.

H. Descendants from Shem to Avram (11:10-32)

1. Shem (11:10a)

10This is the record of the descendants of Shem:

2. Arphaxad (11:10b-11) [2317 BCE]

Two years after the flood, when Shem was 100 years old, he became the father of ArpakhshadArphaxad. 11And after he had become the father of Arpakhshad, Shem lived 500 years and had other sons and daughters.

3. Shelah (11:12-13) [2282 BCE]

12When Arpakhshad was 135[12] years old he became the father of ShelachShelah. 13And after he had become the father of Shelach, Arpakhshad lived 403 years and had other sons and daughters.

4. Eber (11:14-15) [2252 BCE]

14When Shelach was 130 years old he became the father of 'EverEber. 15After he had become the father of 'Ever, Shelach lived 403 years and had other sons and daughters.

5. Peleg (11:16-17) [2218 BCE]

16When 'Ever was 134 years old he became the father of Peleg. 17After he had become the father of Peleg, 'Ever lived 430 years and had other sons and daughters.

6. Reu (11:18-19) [2188-1949 BCE]

18When Peleg was 130 years old he became the father of Reu. 19After he had become the father of Reu, Peleg lived 209 years and had other sons and daughters.

7. Serug (11:20-21) [2156-1926 BCE]

20When Reu was 132 years old he became the father of Serug. 21After he had become the father of Serug, Reu lived 207 years and had other sons and daughters.

8. Nahor (11:22-23) [2126 BCE]

22When Serug was 130 years old he became the father of Nahor. 23After he had become the father of Nahor, Serug lived 200 years [d 1926 BCE] and had other sons and daughters.

9. Terah (11:24-25) [2097 BCE]

24When Nahor was 179 years old he became the father of Terah. 25After he had become the father of Terah, Nahor lived 119 and had other sons and daughters.

[Nimrod (founder of Babylon) dies 2032 BCE]

10. Avram, Nahor, and Haran (11:26-32) [2027 BCE]

26When Terah was 70 years old he became the father of AvramAbram, “exalted father”, Nahor“snorting”, and Haran“mountaineer”.

a. Terah (11:27a)

27Now this is the history of the generations of Terah.[27] Terah became the father of Avram [ca April 1 1967 BCE], Nahor [2000 BCE],  and Haran [2027 BCE].

[Ur of the Chaldeans [MAP]]

b. Lot Born; Haran Dies (11:27b-28)

Haran became the father of Lot [c 1967 BCE]. 28During his father Terah’s lifetime, Haran died [ca 1925 BCE] in his native land, in Ur-KasdimUr of the Chaldeans[28].

[Job’s trials begin ca 1965 BCE]

c. Avram and Nahor Take Wives (11:29-30)

(Maftir) 29Avram and Nahor married wives [ca 1927 BCE]. Avram’s wife was named Sarai“she who strives,” “contentious” [b 1957 BCE], and the name of Nahor’s wife was Milcahqueen [b ca 1963 BCE], the daughter of Haran, who was also the father of Iscah“one who looks forth”. 30Sarai was barren. She had no child.

d. Terah Moves Family to Haran (11:31-32) [Ur [MAP] to Haran [MAP], ca 1924-1927 BCE]

31Terah took Avram his son, Lot the son of Haran, his son’s son, and Sarai his daughter-in-law, his son Avram’s wife. They went from Ur-Kasdim, to go into the land of Kena'an. [MAP] They came to Haran[31] and lived there. 32The days of Terah were two hundred five years. Terah died in Haran. [ca April 1-4, 1892 BCE]

The brakah (blessing) to recite after reading the Parashah is here.

The brakah to recite before reading the Haftarah is here.

The Haftarah for this Portion is Isaiah 54:1-55:5

The brakah to recite before reading from the Apostolic Writings is here.

The reading from the Gospels is Luke 17:20-27

The Blessing of the Messiah to recite after reading from the Gospels is here.

Chapter 12


 1. I believe that this one language for all of humanity was the language that HaShem taught to Adam and Havah. Because HaShem is eternal (timeless) and humans were created to be eternal (timeless) then the language should also be a timeless language with no tenses (past, present, future). One of the outstanding characteristics of the Hebrew language is that is has no tenses, as we think of them. Whether the action being spoken of occurs in the past, present, or future is determined by the context, not by the verb tense. Zephaniah 3:8-10 says that in the Last Days when the Gentile nations have been restored to right relationship with God, He will “change the speech of the peoples to a pure speech, that all of them may call upon the Name of יְהוָה֒ and serve Him with one accord.” I therefore believe that Hebrew is the original language of humanity, and that it will be the language of both the Kingdom Period and the eternal Olam Habah (the world to come). [RETURN]

 2a. LXX reads “from the east”. [RETURN]

 2b. Shinar, the fertile valley watered by the Euphrates and Tigris was chosen as the center of their union and the seat of their power. (JF&B) This is the region of what is now northern Iraq, referred to as “the fertile crescent.” [RETURN]

 3. brick—There being no stone in that quarter, brick is, and was, the only material used for building, as appears in the mass of ruins which at the Birs Nimroud may have been the very town formed by those ancient rebels. Some of these are sun-dried, others burnt in the kiln and of different colors.
tar—bitumen, a mineral pitch, which, when hardened, forms a strong cement, commonly used in Assyria to this day, and forming the mortar found on the burnt brick remains of antiquity. (JF&B) [RETURN]

4a. Literally: “…a tower; at its top, the heavens...,” very probably a reference to the astrological signs of the Zodiac. The city of Bavel (Babel) was built by Nimrod, and he was king there. It was there that the pagan religion known as “the Babylon Mystery Religion” or “Mystery Babylon” (Rev 17:5) was developed. This religion was developed around the worship of Nimrod and is the ancestor of all pagan religions (including the many pagan aspects of “Christianity” — don’t get upset, just read the article). One significant element of this religion is that is the source of the occult practice of astrology. The tower was very likely a combination temple and observatory from which to study the stars for the express purpose of divination. Notice how the goal of humanity to ascend to the heavens is part and parcel of the sin of Lucifer:

“How did you come to fall from the heavens, Morning Star, son of the dawn? How did you come to be cut to the ground, conqueror of nations? You thought to yourself, ‘I will scale the heavens, I will raise my throne above God’s stars. I will sit on the Mount of Assembly far away in the north. I will rise past the tops of the clouds, I will make myself like the Most High.’” (Isaiah 14:12-14) [RETURN]

4b. Note that this is in direct disobedience to God’s command to “spread out across the earth and multiply upon it” (Gen 9:7). [RETURN]

 7. If יְהוָה֒ [YeHoVaH] is an absolute Unity, to Whom is He speaking, and Who is the “Us” to Whom He suggests, “Let Us go down…”? [RETURN]

 8. At the end of the Flood, HaShem commanded Noah to “… be fruitful, multiply, swarm on the earth and multiply on it” (Gen 8:17; 9:7). Instead, apparent virtually all of Noach’s descendants had decided to settle on or near the “plain in the land of Shin'ar.” [RETURN]

12. I have used the ages of the patriarchs from Arpakhshad to Nahor (v. 20) as given in the Septuagint and Samaritan Pentateuch (cited by Josephus), which predate the Hebrew Masoretic text used for most English translations. This moves the date of the flood (and all earlier events) backwards in time by at least 700 years from the dates given so far in my commentary. Watch this excellent YouTube video. [RETURN]

27. The Tanakh tells us that Terah was not only an idol worshipper (Josh 24:2), he also had a very successful business making and selling idols, and the remains of his fine home have been identified by modern archaeology. According to a fanciful Midrash in B'resheet Rabah 38, Terah needed to leave his store, and he appointed Abraham to sell the idols in his stead. However, Abraham discouraged potential customers from buying the idols, explaining to them the futility of worshipping statues that were only fashioned that very day. Not satisfied with this, Abraham took an axe and destroyed all but one of his father’s idols. He took the axe and placed it in the hand of the largest idol, the only one that remained intact. When Terah returned and saw what had happened, he accused Abraham. But Abraham explained that the largest idol had broken all the others in a fight over an offering that a woman had brought to the store. Terah exclaimed that such a thing was impossible. He then realized that his son had tricked him into admitting that his idols were powerless. The Midrash recounts that Terah was a “stargazer” (astrologer, using the Zodiac for divination as part of the religion of Nimrod, note 4a.) [RETURN]

28. Ur, Hebrew אור, 'Uwr, flame; “Its name probably derived from its being devoted to the rites of fire-worship. Terah and his family were equally infected with that idolatry as the rest of the inhabitants (Joshua 24:15)” (JF&B). One might wonder if this “fire-worship” isn’t a reference to the worship of Ba'al (or Molech), in which children were burned alive as a sacrifice. [RETURN]

31. Haran [MAP] was two days’ journey south-southeast from Ur, on the direct road to the ford of the Euphrates at Rakka, the nearest and most convenient route to what is now Israel. [RETURN]

Added dates, map links, and a few notes on Friday, 02 July 2021
Revised on Monday, 14 February 2022; see note 12

Page last updated on Saturday, 14 May 2022 06:25 PM
(Updates are generally minor formatting or editorial changes.
Major content changes are identified as "Revisions”)

Anxiously awaiting Mashiach’s return

Blue Letter Bible Search Tool

Range Options:

e.g. Gen;Psa-Mal;Rom 3-9