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God remembered Noah, all the animals, and all the livestock that were with him in the ship; and God made a wind to pass over the earth. The waters subsided. Bible

“remembered.” The word “remember” is used in the Semitic language in both a straightforward and idiomatic sense. For example, one place where “remember” is used in a straightforward sense in the Bible is when Pharaoh’s cupbearer did not remember Joseph, but forgot him. “Remember” is also used to mean “to keep in mind” (Ps. 103:14).

The word “remember” is also used in the Semitic languages, and thus in the Bible, in an idiomatic way. This is sometimes referred to by scholars as the “pregnant sense” of the word because it means more than “remember,” it means to act upon one’s previous knowledge. While the idiomatic sense of “remember” usually occurs in a positive sense, i.e., “to act favorably on one’s behalf” (Gen. 8:1; 1 Sam. 1:11), it can also refer to “remember and then act against the person,” (1 Sam. 15:2; 3 John 1:10; Rev. 18:5). The idiomatic sense of “remember” is part of the idiom of the Semitic languages, and is used by both God (Gen. 30:22; Exod. 2:24; Judg. 16:28; 1 Sam. 1:11) and people (Judg. 8:34; 1 Sam. 1:11). “Remembered” is used in its idiomatic way many times in the Bible; just a few examples are: Genesis 19:29; 30:22; Judges 8:34; 16:28; 1 Samuel 1:11, 19; Nehemiah 6:14; 13:31; Psalm 106:4; and Hosea 8:13.

The idiomatic use of “remember” also occurs in the New Testament. For example, the malefactor on the cross asked Jesus to “remember” him, which meant pay favorable attention to him (Luke 23:42; but they would have been speaking Hebrew or Aramaic. But see Gal. 2:10; Col. 4:18; Heb. 13:3). [Many other words are used in an idiomatic or “pregnant sense,” including, “know,” “foreknow,” “look,” “watch,” etc. For more on these idiomatic uses, see commentary on Romans 8:29].


Commentary for: Genesis 8:1