'Waters' in the Bible
The earth was formless and void or a waste and emptiness, and darkness was upon the face of the deep [primeval ocean that covered the unformed earth]. The Spirit of God was moving (hovering, brooding) over the face of the waters.
And God said, “Let there be an expanse [of the sky] in the midst of the waters, and let it separate the waters [below the expanse] from the waters [above the expanse].”
And God made the expanse [of sky] and separated the waters which were under the expanse from the waters which were above the expanse; and it was so [just as He commanded].
Then God said, “Let the waters below the heavens be gathered into one place [of standing, pooling together], and let the dry land appear”; and it was so.
God called the dry land earth, and the gathering of the waters He called seas; and God saw that this was good (pleasing, useful) and He affirmed and sustained it.
Then God said, “Let the waters swarm and abundantly produce living creatures, and let birds soar above the earth in the open expanse of the heavens.”
God created the great sea monsters and every living creature that moves, with which the waters swarmed according to their kind, and every winged bird according to its kind; and God saw that it was good and He affirmed and sustained it.
And God blessed them, saying, “Be fruitful, multiply, and fill the waters in the seas, and let birds multiply on the earth.”
For behold, I, even I, will bring a flood of waters on the earth, to destroy all life under the heavens in which there is the breath and spirit of life; everything that is on the land shall die.
Noah was six hundred years old when the flood (deluge) of water came on the earth [covering all of the land].
Then Noah and his sons and his wife and his sons’ wives with him entered the ark to escape the flood waters.
The flood [the great downpour of rain] was forty days and nights on the earth; and the waters increased and lifted up the ark, and it floated [high] above the land.
The waters became mighty and increased greatly on the earth, and the ark floated on the surface of the waters.
The waters prevailed so greatly and were so mighty and overwhelming on the earth, so that all the high mountains everywhere under the heavens were covered.
[In fact] the waters became fifteen cubits higher [than the highest ground], and the mountains were covered.
The waters covered [all of] the earth for a hundred and fifty days (five months).
And God remembered and thought kindly of Noah and every living thing and all the animals that were with him in the ark; and God made a wind blow over the land, and the waters receded.
and the waters receded steadily from the earth. At the end of a hundred and fifty days the waters had diminished.
The waters continued to decrease until the tenth month; on the first day of the tenth month the tops of the mountains were seen.
and he sent out a raven, which flew here and there until the waters were dried up from the earth.
Then Noah sent out a dove to see if the water level had fallen below the surface of the land.
But the dove found no place on which to rest the sole of her foot, and she returned to him to the ark, for the waters were [still] on the face of the entire earth. So he reached out his hand and took the dove, and brought her into the ark.
The dove came back to him in the evening, and there, in her beak, was a fresh olive leaf. So Noah knew that the water level had subsided from the earth.
Now in the six hundred and first year [of Noah’s life], on the first day of the first month, the waters were drying up from the earth. Then Noah removed the covering of the ark and looked, and the surface of the ground was drying.
I will establish My covenant with you: Never again shall all flesh be cut off by the water of a flood, nor shall there ever again be a flood to destroy and ruin the earth.”
and I will [compassionately] remember My covenant, which is between Me and you and every living creature of all flesh; and never again will the water become a flood to destroy all flesh.
Thus says the Lord, “By this you shall know and recognize and acknowledge that I am the Lord: look, with the staff in my hand I will strike the water in the Nile, and it shall be turned to blood.
Then the Lord said to Moses, “Say to Aaron, ‘Take your staff and stretch out your hand over the waters of Egypt, over their rivers, over their streams, over their pools, and over all their reservoirs of water, so that they may become blood; and there shall be blood throughout all the land of Egypt, in containers both of wood and of stone.’”
So Moses and Aaron did as the Lord commanded; Aaron lifted up the staff and struck the waters in the Nile, in the sight of Pharaoh and in the sight of his servants, and all the water that was in the Nile was turned into blood.
So Aaron stretched out his hand [with his staff] over the waters of Egypt, and the frogs came up and covered the land of Egypt.
Then Moses stretched out his hand over the sea; and the Lord swept the sea back by a strong east wind all that night and turned the seabed into dry land, and the waters were divided.
The Israelites went into the middle of the sea on dry land, and the waters formed a wall to them on their right hand and on their left.
Then the Lord said to Moses, “Stretch out your hand over the sea so that the waters may come back over the Egyptians, on their war-chariots and their charioteers.”
The waters returned and covered the chariots and the charioteers, and all the army of Pharaoh that had gone into the sea after them; not even one of them survived.
But the Israelites walked on dry land in the middle of the sea, and the waters formed a wall to them on their right hand and on their left.
“With the blast of Your nostrils the waters piled up,The flowing waters stood up like a mound;The deeps were congealed in the heart of the sea.
“You blew with Your wind, the sea covered them;[Clad in armor] they sank like lead in the mighty waters.
For the horses of Pharaoh went with his war-chariots and his charioteers into the sea, and the Lord brought back the waters of the sea on them, but the sons of Israel walked on dry land in the middle of the sea.
Then they came to Marah, but they could not drink its waters because they were bitter; therefore it was named Marah (bitter).
Then he cried to the Lord [for help], and the Lord showed him a tree, [a branch of] which he threw into the waters, and the waters became sweet.There the Lord made a statute and an ordinance for them, and there He tested them,
Then the children of Israel came to Elim where there were twelve springs of water and seventy date palms, and they camped there beside the waters.
‘These you may eat, whatever is in the water: whatever has fins and scales in the waters, in the seas, and in the rivers, these you may eat;
but whatever does not have fins and scales in the seas and in the rivers, of all the teeming life in the waters, and of all the living creatures that are in the waters, they are [to be considered] detestable to you.
Everything in the water that does not have fins and scales is detestable to you.
This is the law regarding the animal and the bird and every living thing that moves in the waters and everything that swarms on the earth,
These are the waters of Meribah (contention, strife), where the sons of Israel contended with the Lord, and He showed Himself holy among them.
“Aaron will be gathered to his people [in death]; for he shall not enter the land which I have given to the children of Israel, because you [both] rebelled against My command at the waters of Meribah.
“Like valleys that stretch out,Like gardens beside the river,Like aloes planted by the Lord,Like cedars beside the waters.
“Water [that is, great blessings] will flow from his buckets,And his offspring will live by many waters,And his king will be higher than Agag,And his kingdom shall be exalted.
because in the Wilderness of Zin, during the strife of the congregation, you rebelled against My command to treat me as holy [by following My instruction] before their eyes at the water.” (These are the waters of Meribah in Kadesh in the Wilderness of Zin.)
the likeness of anything that crawls on the ground, or of any fish that is in the waters beneath the earth.
and what He did to the army of Egypt, to its horses and its chariots, when He made the water of the Red Sea engulf them as they pursued you, and how the Lord completely destroyed them;
“Of all [creatures] that are in the waters, you may eat these: anything that has fins and scales you may eat,
because you broke faith with Me among of the sons of Israel at the waters of Meribah-kadesh, in the Wilderness of Zin, and because you did not treat Me as holy among of the sons of Israel.
Of Levi he said,“Your Thummim and Your Urim belong to Your godly man [Aaron],Whom You tested and proved at Massah,With whom You contended at the waters of Meribah;
You shall command the priests who carry the ark of the covenant, saying, ‘When you come to the edge of the waters of the Jordan, you shall stand still in the Jordan.’”
When the soles of the feet of the priests who carry the ark of the Lord, the Lord of all the earth, [come to] rest in the waters of the Jordan, the waters of the Jordan flowing down from above will be cut off, and they will stand in one mass [of water].”
the waters which were flowing down from above stopped and rose up in one mass a great distance away at Adam, the city that is beside Zarethan. Those [waters] flowing downward toward the sea of the Arabah, the Salt Sea, were completely cut off. So the people crossed [the river] opposite Jericho.
then you shall say to them that the waters of the Jordan were cut off before the ark of the covenant of the Lord; when it crossed the Jordan, the waters of the Jordan were cut off. So these stones shall become a memorial for Israel forever.”
When the priests who carried the ark of the covenant of the Lord had come up from the midst of the Jordan, and the soles of their feet were raised up to the dry land, the waters of the Jordan returned to their place, and flowed over all its banks as before.
For the Lord your God dried up the waters of the Jordan for you until you crossed over, just as the Lord your God did to the Red Sea, which He dried up before us until we had crossed;
Now it happened when all the kings of the Amorites who were beyond the Jordan to the west, and all the kings of the Canaanites who were by the sea, heard that the Lord had dried up the waters of the Jordan before the Israelites until they had crossed over, their hearts melted [in despair], and there was no [fighting] spirit in them any longer because of the Israelites [and what God had done for them].
So all these kings met and they came and encamped together at the waters of Merom, to fight against Israel.
So Joshua and all the people of war with him came against them suddenly by the waters of Merom, and attacked them.
The border went up to Debir from the Valley of Achor, and turned northward toward Gilgal which is opposite the ascent of Adummim, which is on the south side of the valley; and the border continued on to the waters of En-shemesh and ended at En-rogel.
Then the border extended from the top of the mountain to the spring of the waters of Nephtoah and proceeded to the cities of Mount Ephron; then the border curved to Baalah (that is, Kiriath-jearim).
Then the lot (allotment) for the sons of Joseph went from the Jordan Valley at Jericho to the waters of Jericho on the east into the wilderness, going up from Jericho through the hill country to Bethel.
The southern side was from the edge of Kiriath-jearim, and the border went on westward and went to the source of the waters of Nephtoah.
“The kings came and fought;Then the kings of Canaan foughtAt Taanach by the waters of Megiddo.Spoils of silver they did not obtain.
So David came to Baal-perazim, and he defeated them there, and said, “The Lord has broken through my enemies before me, like a breakthrough of water.” So he named that place Baal-perazim (master of breakthroughs).
Joab sent messengers to David and said, “I have fought against Rabbah; I have even taken the city of waters.
“He made darkness canopies around Him,A mass of waters, thick clouds of the skies.
“He sent from above, He took me;He drew me out of great waters.
And Elijah took his mantle (coat) and rolled it up and struck the waters, and they were divided this way and that, so that the two of them crossed over on dry ground.
He took the mantle of Elijah that fell from him and struck the waters and said, “Where is the Lord, the God of Elijah?” And when he too had struck the waters, they divided this way and that, and Elisha crossed over.
Then Elisha went to the spring of water and threw the salt in it and said, “Thus says the Lord: ‘I [not the salt] have purified and healed these waters; there shall no longer be death or barrenness because of it.’”
So the waters have been purified to this day, in accordance with the word spoken by Elisha.
Are not Abana and Pharpar, the rivers of Damascus [in Aram], better than all the waters of Israel? Could I not wash in them and be clean?” So he turned and went away in a rage.
Do not listen to Hezekiah, for thus says the king of Assyria: “Surrender to me and come out to [meet] me, and every man may eat from his own vine and fig tree, and every man may drink the waters of his own well,
“I dug wells and drank foreign waters,And with the sole of my feet I dried upAll the rivers of [the Lower Nile of] Egypt.”
So Israel came up to Baal-perazim, and David defeated the Philistines there. Then David said, “God has broken through my enemies by my hand, like the breakthrough of waters.” Therefore they named that place Baal-perazim.
he decided, together with his officers and his soldiers, to stop up the water [supply] from the springs which were outside the city [by enclosing them with masonry and concealing them], and they helped him.
This same Hezekiah also stopped up the upper outlet of the waters of Gihon and channeled them down to the west side of the City of David. Hezekiah succeeded in everything that he did.
“You divided the sea before them,So that they passed through the midst of the sea on dry land;You hurled their pursuers into the depths,Like a stone into mighty and raging waters.
“He gives rain upon the earthAnd sends waters upon the fields,
“For you would forget your trouble;You would remember it as waters that have passed by.
“Behold, He restrains the waters, and they dry up;Again, He sends the waters out, and they overwhelm and devastate the earth.
“As water evaporates from the sea,And a river drains and dries up,
Water wears away the stones,Its floods and torrents wash away the soil of the earth,So You [O Lord] destroy the hope of man.
“They are insignificant on the surface of the water;Their portion is cursed on the earth;They do not turn toward the vineyards.
“Drought and heat consume the snow waters;So does Sheol (the nether world, the place of the dead) [consume] those who have sinned.
“The spirits of the dead trembleUnderneath the waters and their inhabitants.
“He wraps the waters in His clouds [which otherwise would spill on earth all at once],And the cloud does not burst under them.
“He has inscribed a circular limit (the horizon) on the face of the watersAt the boundary between light and darkness.
“When He gave weight and pressure to the windAnd allotted the waters by measure,
‘My root is spread out and open to the waters,And the dew lies all night upon my branch.
“Ice is made by the breath of God,And the expanse of the waters is frozen.
“Water becomes like stone [and hides itself],And the surface of the deep is frozen and imprisoned.
“Can you lift up your voice to the clouds,So that an abundance of water will cover you?
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