LOS ANGELES, CA [CHI] — In a landmark event that will add fresh life to the Biblical story of Creation, Kehot Publication Society, the Chabad-Lubavitch publishing house, and Chabad of California are releasing a new translation of the Book of Genesis. This innovative volume combines religious scholarship and scientific research in a single, reader-friendly text that is available on at Kehot.com.
As the global economic crisis prompts increased numbers of people to deepen their spirituality, this Book of Genesis offers vital guidance, comfort, and hope. The revolutionary work is part of Kehot’s edition of the Torah’s Five Books of Moses that brings the eternal wisdom of Scripture into clear focus for modern readers. The volume features authoritative text in both English and Hebrew, helpful commentary by Biblical scholars, and inspiring insights from the Lubavitcher Rebbe, Rabbi Menachem M. Schneerson, of blessed memory.
“It’s especially appropriate that this volume is released now, as our world faces turbulent times and people everywhere are seeking a deeper purpose and meaning in their lives,” said Rabbi Boruch Shlomo Cunin, director of Chabad of California. “With this special Book of Genesis, we want to reach as many readers as possible and make their experience more meaningful.”
“The Rebbe constantly encouraged us to increase our Torah studies and apply the lessons to our own lives,” added Rabbi Cunin. “This new volume offers a perfect resource for people of all backgrounds–scholar or novice–to explore this key Biblical text.”
The volume’s commentary is written in a way that makes Genesis understandable and accessible for everyone–including those approaching Torah study for the first time. Background materials are woven throughout the translation, bringing the story to life in a way that is informative, captivating, and completely authentic.
This new presentation of Scripture offers a new translation of the Biblical text coupled with an innovative interpolation of the classic Biblical commentary of Rashi. This creates a seamless flow–from translation to commentary, providing the reader with a clear understanding of Scripture as understood by the classic commentator. The commentary is infused with the Rebbe’s analytical elucidations of Rashi’s commentary.
An overview summarizes the weekly portion’s place in the overall scheme of the Torah, based on the Rebbe’s unique insights on the main theme of each portion.
Set beneath the text and running commentary are “Chasidic Insights” reflecting the lessons illuminated by the Rebbe (and occasionally his predecessors dating back to the founder of the Chasidic movement, Rabbi Israel Baal Shem Tov). For readers already familiar with the basics of Jewish mysticism, some of the more esoteric points are separated into a third commentary called “Inner Dimensions.”
Some basic issues related to Genesis and Creation are addressed from a Torah perspective in a way that examines both classic and contemporary viewpoints. To complement the texts, new maps–more than 30 in all–have been created using recent archeological and geographic research in the Holy Land. Many chronological charts, tables, and illustrations have also been included to facilitate a deeper understanding.
In addition to these English elements, this edition includes the full Hebrew text of the Torah, the ancient Aramaic translation of Onkelos, and Rashi’s original commentary (vocalized for easy reading).
“The study of Torah and the application of its values are at the center of humanity’s purpose,” said Rabbi Yosef B. Friedman of the Kehot Publication Society. “The Book of Genesis is the perfect, user friendly starting point for anyone who wants to explore the timeless message of the Bible.”
Kehot released the Book of Numbers (Bemidbar) in 2004 and the Book of Exodus (Shemot) in 2006–but in many ways, the Book of Genesis is the most exciting development in this project. To see sample pages, or to purchase the book, visit Kehot Publication Society’s website at www.kehot.com.