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Book of Genesis Lies and Deceit Quotes Page 1 Theme

How we cite the quotes: (Chapter:Verse)

Quote #1

But the serpent said to the woman, "You will not die; for God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil." (NRSV 3:4-5)

And the serpent said unto the woman, Ye shall not surely die: for God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil." (KJV 3:4-5)

In the history of biblical interpretation, the serpent is the quintessential deceiver. But didn't God deceive a little, too? He told them that they would die the day they ate from the tree. Yet he keeps them alive a bit longer. Why? Or do we need to read God's words differently?

Quote #2

Then the Lord said to Cain, "Where is your brother Abel?" He said, "I do not know; am I my brother's keeper?" And the Lord said, "What have you done? Listen; your brother's blood is crying out to me from the ground!" (NRSV 4:9-10)

And the Lord said unto Cain, Where is Abel thy brother? And he said, I know not: Am I my brother's keeper? And he said, What hast thou done? the voice of thy brother's blood crieth unto me from the ground. (KJV 4:9-10)

Here goes Cain, trying to lie to God. That doesn't go over so well. But why not? Is it because God is all-knowing? Is he just setting Cain up? Or does God only know about the murder because the blood itself fills him in?

Quote #3

When he was about to enter Egypt, he said to his wife Sarai, "I know well that you are a woman beautiful in appearance; and when the Egyptians see you, they will say, 'This is his wife'; then they will kill me, but they will let you live. Say you are my sister, so that it may go well with me because of you, and that my life may be spared on your account." (NRSV 12:11-13)

And it came to pass, when he was come near to enter into Egypt, that he said unto Sarai his wife, Behold now, I know that thou art a fair woman to look upon: Therefore it shall come to pass, when the Egyptians shall see thee, that they shall say, This is his wife: and they will kill me, but they will save thee alive. Say you are my sister, so that it may go well with me because of you, and that my life may be spared on your account." (KJV Genesis 12:11-13)

Abraham's little fib actually works out pretty well for him. Not only does he come out of Egypt alive, but he leaves as a super-rich man. And hey, if it worked once, why not give it another go: Abraham tells this very same fib again in 20:2. This time, he argues that—technically—Sarah is his half-sister. We can't decide if that makes it better or worse.

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