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    A puzzling verse in Genesis – Ask the Rabbi

    Q. How do you explain the puzzling verse (Gen. 4:1), “I have gotten a man, God”?

    A. Eve’s words, kaniti (linked with ‘Kayin’, Cain) ish et HaShem, “I have gotten a man with the Lord”, give rise to two questions.

    Why does she say, “I have gotten a man”? Why does she say, “With the Lord”?

    The first statement may mean that after the sin she committed which lost them the Garden of Eden, she has regained her husband’s love; or that she has given birth to a male child.

    The second statement does not mean, “a God who is man” or “a man who is God”. Between ish (a man) and HaShem (the Lord) the verse has the word et, “with”. Hence Eve is saying, “I have given birth to a child with the help of God”.

    Rashi quotes the Talmudic statement that husband and wife are partners with God in creating new life (cf. Niddah 31a).

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