[Editor’s note: Because of the great variety and density of the events recorded in this week’s reading, the “Parshah summary” this week consists of the full text of the Parshah.]
In the beginning G‑d created the heavens and the earth. The earth was formless and void, and darkness was on the face of the deep; and the spirit of G‑d hovered above the surface of the waters. G‑d said: “Let there be light,” and there was light. G‑d saw the light, that it was good; and G‑d divided the light from the darkness. G‑d called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night; and there was evening and there was morning, one day.
G‑d said: “Let there be a firmament in the midst of the waters, and let it divide water from water.” G‑d made the firmament, and divided the waters which were below the firmament from the waters which were above the firmament; and it was so. G‑d called the firmament Heaven; and there was evening and there was morning, a second day.
G‑d said: “Let the waters under the heavens be gathered together to one place, and let the dry land appear,” and it was so. G‑d called the dry land Earth, and the gathering together of the waters he called Seas; and G‑d saw that it was good. G‑d said: “Let the earth sprout grass, herbs yielding seed, and fruit trees yielding fruit after its kind, whose seed is in itself, upon the earth,” and it was so. The earth brought forth grass, herb yielding seed after its kind, and trees yielding fruit whose seed was in itself, after its kind; and G‑d saw that it was good. There was evening and there was morning, a third day.
G‑d said: “Let there be luminaries in the firmament of heaven to divide the day from the night; and let them be for signs, for seasons, for days and for years. Let them be for luminaries in the firmament of heaven to give light upon the earth”; and it was so. G‑d made the two great luminaries: the great luminary to rule the day, and the small luminary to rule the night; and the stars also. G‑d set them in the firmament of heaven to give light upon the earth, to rule over the day and over the night, and to divide the light from the darkness; and G‑d saw that it was good. There was evening and there was morning, a fourth day.
G‑d said: “Let the waters swarm abundantly with moving creatures that have life, and let birds fly above the earth in the open firmament of heaven.” G‑d created the great sea-creatures, and every living creature that moves, which the waters brought forth abundantly, after their kind, and every winged bird after its kind; and G‑d saw that it was good. G‑d blessed them, saying: “Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the waters in the seas, and let the birds multiply in the earth.” There was evening and there was morning, a fifth day.
G‑d said: “Let the earth bring forth living creatures after their kind, cattle, creeping things and beasts of the earth after their kind,” and it was so. G‑d made the beasts of the earth after their kind, and cattle after their kind, and everything that creeps on the earth after its kind; and G‑d saw that it was good.
G‑d said: “Let us make Man in Our image, after Our likeness; and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, the birds of the air, the cattle, all the earth, and every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.”
G‑d blessed them, and G‑d said to them: “Be fruitful, and multiply, fill the earth and conquer it; have dominion over the fish of the sea, the birds of the air and every living thing that moves on the earth.” G‑d said: “Behold, I have given you every herb bearing seed which is upon the face of all the earth, and every tree on which is the fruit yielding seed; to you it shall be for food. To every beast of the earth and to every bird of the air, and to everything that creeps on the earth, wherein there is life, I have given every green herb for food”; and it was so.
G‑d saw everything that He had made, and behold, it was very good. There was evening and there was morning, the sixth day.
The heavens and the earth were completed, and all their hosts. G‑d completed on the seventh day His work which He had done, and He rested on the seventh day from all His work which He had done. G‑d blessed the seventh day and sanctified it, because in it he rested from all his work which G‑d had created, to make.
These are the chronicles of the heaven and of the earth when they were created, in the day that G‑d made the earth and the heavens.
No plant of the field was yet on the earth, and no herb of the field had yet grown, for G‑d had not caused it to rain upon the earth, and there was not a man to till the ground. But there went up a mist from the earth, and watered the whole face of the earth.
G‑d formed man from the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul.
G‑d planted a garden eastward in Eden; and there He put the man whom he had formed. And out of the ground G‑d made to grow every tree that is pleasant to the sight and good for food; the Tree of Life also in the midst of the garden, and the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil.
A river went out of Eden to water the garden; and from thence it was parted, and branched into four streams. The name of the first is Pishon; that is the one which compasses the whole land of Havilah, where there is gold. The gold of that land is good; there is bdellium and the shoham stone. The name of the second river is Gichon; it compasses the whole land of Cush. The name of the third river is Chidekel; that is the one which goes toward the east of Assyria. And the fourth river is Perat.
G‑d commanded the man, saying: “Of every tree of the garden you may freely eat; but of the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil, you shall not eat of it, for on the day that you eat of it you shall surely die.”
Out of the ground G‑d had formed every beast of the field and every bird of the air, and brought them to the man to see what he would call them; and whatever the man called every living creature, that was its name. The man gave names to all cattle, to the birds of the air and to every beast of the field; but for the man there was not found a helpmeet opposite him.
G‑d caused a deep sleep to fall upon the man, and he slept; He took one of his sides, and closed up the flesh in its place. G‑d built the side which He had taken from the man into a woman, and brought her to the man.
The man said: “This is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man.” Therefore a man leaves his father and his mother, and cleaves to his wife, and they become one flesh.
They were both naked, the man and his wife, and they felt no shame.
Now the serpent was craftier than all the beasts of the field which G‑d had made. He said to the woman: “Has G‑d said, ‘You shall not eat of any tree of the garden’?”
The woman said to the serpent: “We may eat of the fruit of the trees of the garden. But of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, G‑d has said, ‘You shall not eat of it, neither shall you touch it, lest you die.’”
The serpent said to the woman: “You shall not surely die. For G‑d knows that on the day you eat of it, then your eyes shall be opened, and you shall be as gods, knowing good and evil.”
The woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was a delight to the eyes, and a tree to be desired to make one wise; she took of its fruit and ate, and gave also to her husband with her, and he ate.
The eyes of them both were opened, and they knew that they were naked; so they sewed fig leaves together, and made themselves loincloths. They heard the voice of G‑d walking in the garden in the breeze of the day, and the man and his wife hid themselves from the presence of G‑d amongst the trees of the garden.
G‑d called to the man and said to him: “Where are you?”
He said: “I heard Your voice in the garden, and I was afraid, because I was naked; and I hid myself.”
And He said: “Who told you that you are naked? Have you eaten of the tree of which I commanded you that you should not eat?”
The man said: “The woman, whom You gave to be with me, she gave me of the tree and I ate.”
G‑d said to the woman: “What is this that you have done?” And the woman said: “The serpent beguiled me, and I ate.”
G‑d said to the serpent: “Because you have done this, cursed shall you be above all cattle and above every beast of the field; upon your belly you shall go, and dust you shall eat all the days of your life. I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your seed and her seed; it shall bruise your head, and you shall bruise his heel.”
Unto the woman He said: “I will greatly multiply the pain of your childbearing; in sorrow you shall bring forth children. Your desire shall be to your husband, and he shall rule over you.”
And to the man he said: “Because you have listened to the voice of your wife, and ate from the tree of which I commanded you, saying, ‘You shall not eat of it,’ cursed is the earth because of you; in sorrow shall you eat of it all the days of your life. Thorns and thistles shall it bring forth to you, and you shall eat the herb of the field. By the sweat of your brow shall you eat bread, till you return to the ground, for out of it were you taken; for dust you are, and to dust shall you return.”
The man called his wife’s name Eve (Chavah), because she was the mother of all living (chai). G‑d made garments of skins for the man and for his wife, and clothed them.
So G‑d banished him from the Garden of Eden, to till the earth from which he was taken. He drove out the man; and he placed the cherubim at the east of the Garden of Eden, and the bright blade of a revolving sword, to guard the way to the Tree of Life.
The man knew Eve his wife; she conceived, and bore Cain, saying, “I have acquired a man from G‑d.” And she again bore his brother Abel. Abel was a keeper of sheep, but Cain was a tiller of the earth.
In the process of time it came to pass that Cain brought of the fruit of the earth an offering to G‑d. And Abel, he also brought of the firstlings of his flock and of the fat parts thereof; G‑d paid heed to Abel and to his offering. But to Cain and to his offering He paid no heed; and Cain was very angry, and his face fell.
G‑d said to Cain: “Why are you angry, and why are you crestfallen? If you do well, shall you not be accepted? And if you do not do well, sin crouches at the door, and to you shall be his desire; yet you may rule over him.”
Cain had words with Abel his brother; and it came to pass, when they were in the field, that Cain rose up against Abel his brother and killed him.
G‑d said to Cain: “Where is Abel your brother?” And he said: “I know not; am I my brother’s keeper?”
“And now, cursed are you from the earth, which has opened her mouth to receive your brother’s blood from your hand. When you till the earth, it shall not henceforth yield to you her strength; a fugitive and a vagabond shall you be on the earth.”
Cain said to G‑d: “Is my sin too great to forgive? Behold, You have driven me out this day from the face of the earth, and from Your face I shall be hidden; I shall be a fugitive and a vagabond in the earth, and it shall come to pass that anyone that finds me will kill me.”
G‑d said to him: “Therefore, whoever slays Cain, vengeance shall be taken on him sevenfold.” G‑d set a mark upon Cain, lest anyone finding him should strike him. Cain went out from the presence of G‑d, and dwelt in the land of Nod, to the east of Eden.
Cain knew his wife, and she conceived, and bore Enoch; and he was building a city, and called the name of the city after the name of his son, Enoch.
To Enoch was born Irad, and Irad begot Mechuyael, and Mechuyael begot Metushael, and Metushael begot Lemech.
And Lemech took for himself two wives; the name of the one was Adah, and the name of the other Tzillah. Adah bore Yaval; he was the father those who dwell in tents and keep herds. His brother’s name was Yuval; he was the father of those who handle the harp and the flute. And Tzillah, she also bore Tuval-Cain, forger of every sharp instrument in brass and iron; and the sister of Tuval-Cain was Naamah.
Lemech said to his wives: “Adah and Tzillah, hear my voice; wives of Lemech, hearken to my speech; for I have slain a man by wounding, a child by hurt. If Cain shall be avenged sevenfold, truly Lemech seventy and sevenfold.”
Adam knew his wife again, and she bore a son and called his name Seth, “For G‑d has set (shath) me another seed instead of Abel, whom Cain slew.” To Seth also there was born a son, and he called his name Enosh; then men began to call upon G‑d by name.
This is the book of the chronicles of Man; in the day that G‑d created mankind, in the likeness of G‑d he made him. Male and female He created them; and He blessed them, and called their name Man, in the day when they were created.
Adam lived a hundred and thirty years, and begot a son in his own likeness, after his image, and called his name Seth. The days of Adam after he had begotten Seth were eight hundred years; and he begot sons and daughters. All the days that Adam lived were nine hundred and thirty years; and he died.
Seth lived a hundred and five years, and begot Enosh. Seth lived after he begot Enosh eight hundred and seven years, and begot sons and daughters. All the days of Seth were nine hundred and twelve years; and he died.
Enosh lived ninety years, and begot Kenan. Enosh lived after he begot Kenan eight hundred and fifteen years, and begot sons and daughters. All the days of Enosh were nine hundred and five years; and he died.
Kenan lived seventy years, and begot Mahalalel. Kenan lived after he begot Mahalalel eight hundred and forty years, and begot sons and daughters. All the days of Kenan were nine hundred and ten years; and he died.
Mahalalel lived sixty-five years, and begot Jared. Mahalalel lived after he begot Jared eight hundred and thirty years, and he begot sons and daughters. All the days of Mahalalel were eight hundred and ninety-five years; and he died.
Jared lived a hundred and sixty-two years, and he begot Enoch. Jared lived after he begot Enoch eight hundred years, and begot sons and daughters. All the days of Jared were nine hundred and sixty-two years, and he died.
Enoch lived sixty-five years, and he begot Metushelach. Enoch walked with G‑d after he begot Methuselah three hundred years, and begot sons and daughters. All the days of Enoch were three hundred and sixty-five years. Enoch walked with G‑d; and he was not, for G‑d took him.
Metushelach lived a hundred and eighty-seven years, and begot Lemech. Metushelach lived after he begot Lemech seven hundred and eighty-two years, and begot sons and daughters. All the days of Metushelach were nine hundred and sixty-nine years; and he died.
Lemech lived a hundred and eighty-two years, and begot a son. He called his name Noah (“comfort”), saying: “This one shall comfort us for our work and the toil of our hands, because of the earth which G‑d has cursed.” Lemech lived after he begot Noah five hundred and ninety-five years, and begot sons and daughters. All the days of Lemech were seven hundred and seventy-seven years; and he died.
Noah was five hundred years old; and Noah begot Shem, Ham and Japheth.
It came to pass, when men began to multiply on the face of the earth, and daughters were born to them, that the sons of G‑d saw that the daughters of men were fair; and they took for themselves wives of all whom they chose.
G‑d said: My spirit shall not always strive on account of man, for that he also is flesh; and his days shall be a hundred and twenty years. There were Nefilim in the earth in those days, and also after that, when the sons of G‑d came in to the daughters of men, and they bore children to them; these were the mighty men of old, men of renown.
G‑d saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that all the impulse of the thoughts of his heart was only evil, all day long continually. G‑d regretted that He had made man on the earth, and it grieved Him at His heart. G‑d said: “I will obliterate man whom I have created from the face of the earth, man, beast, creeping things and the birds of the air; for I regret that I have made them.”
But Noah found favor in the eyes of G‑d.