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Plowing through History from the Aleph to the Tav

Topics Definition of Hebrew Names

Seth

By Jeff A. Benner

Seth is the third son of Adam. This name is pronounced sheyt and is a root word meaning "to set something in place". Adam's family was continued through his son Seth as Abel (hevel) was killed and Cain (qayin) expelled from the family. This idea of "continuing" is often expressed as "established" in English translations and concepts but is understood and "setting something in place" in Hebrew thought. If I establish a business, I am setting in place. But, there is another possibility to the meaning of the name Sheyt (Seth). The more literal meaning of the word sheyt is "buttocks", the place where you sit. This possess an interesting question. Did Adam name this portion of the body after his son or did he name his son after this body part? Could this be a clue into the personality of Seth? This was meant more as fun than actual literalness but I am always reminded of what one Rabbi once said, "If you are studying the Bible and not laughing, you are doing something wrong". In my studies with friends we often get some real good laughs and I believe this help in Biblical learning as it helps you to remember things as well as enjoy it.




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