[1] Recognizing that even the most seemingly permanent temple complexes are best viewed only as way stations, Nibley generalized the concept of mobile sanctuaries to include all current earthly structures (H. W. Nibley, Tenting, pp. 42-43):

The most wonderful thing about Jerusalem the Holy City is its mobility: at one time it is taken up to heaven and at another it descends to earth or even makes a rendezvous with the earthly Jerusalem at some point in space halfway between. In this resepect both the city and the temple are best thought of in terms of a tent, … at least until the time comes when the saints “will no longer have to use a movable tent” [Origen, John, 10:23, p. 404. “The pitching of the tent outside the camp represents God’s remoteness from ?the impure world” (H. W. Nibley, Tenting, p. 79 n. 40)] according to the early Fathers, who get the idea from the New Testament… [E.g., “John 1:14 reads literally, the logos was made flesh and pitched his tent [eskenosen] among us’; and after ?the Resurrection the Lord camps’ with his disciples, Acts 1:4. At the Transfiguration Peter prematurely proposed setting up three tents for taking possession (Matthew 17:4; Mark 9:5; Luke 9:33)” (ibid., p. 80 n. 41] It is now fairly certain, moreover, that the great temples of the ancients were not designed to be dwelling-houses of deity but rather stations or landing-places, fitted with inclined ramps, stairways, passageways, waiting-rooms, elaborate systems of gates, and so forth, for the convenience of traveling divinities, whose sacred boats and wagons stood ever ready to take them on their endless junkets from shrine to shrine and from festival to festival through the cosmic spaces. The Great Pyramid itself, we are now assured, is the symbol not of immovable stability but of constant migration and movement between the worlds; and the ziggurats of Mesopotamia, far from being immovable, are reproduced in the seven-stepped throne of the thundering sky-wagon.

[2] Cf. 2 Samuel 22.

[3] Psalm 18:6; D&C 121:2. J. F. McConkie et al., Revelations, p. 945 mistakenly identifies the “pavilion” of D&C ?121:1 as God’s heavenly residence, while S. E. Robinson et al., D&C Commentary, 4:151 correctly identifies the “pavilion” as a “movable tent.”

[4] Appropriately translated from the Greek as “Tabernacle” (J. N. Sparks et al., Orthodox Study Bible, Psalm 17(18):12, p. 691). Eden surmises: “No doubt the historical model closest to this is the apada?na of the Persian sovereign, the pavilion of the royal palace in which the King of kings sat in his throne to receive his subjects. In some texts of the Jewish tradition, the link which ties the description of the divine audience room to the earthly royal one is clearly shown. For instance, in the Pirkei De Rebbe Eliezer, an early medieval Midrash, we can read (G. B. Eden, Mystical Architecture, p. 22; cf. M.-A. Ouaknin et al., Rabbi lizer, 12, p. 82): [God] let Adam into his apada?na, as it is written: And put him into the Garden of Eden to cultivate it and to keep it’ (Genesis 2:15).”

[5]K. L. Barker, Zondervan, p. 803 n. 18:7-15. Some Christians also came to view this Psalm as foreshadowing the Incarnation (J. N. Sparks et al., Orthodox Study Bible, p. 691 n. 17). Noah’s Ark was sometimes seen in a similar fashion: “The ark was a type of the Mother of God with Christ and the Church in her womb (Akath). The flood-waters were a type of baptism, in which we are saved (1 Peter 3:18-22)” (ibid., Genesis 6:14-21, p. 12).

[6]R. Alter, Psalms, p. 53 n. 8.

[7]G. W. E. Nickelsburg, 1 Enoch 1, 86:3, p. 364. Cf. Moses 7:26.

[8]I.e., covenantal “sons of God” in the patriarchal line of Seth and Noah. See Genesis 6:1-3.

[9]J. L. Kugel, Traditions, pp. 179-185, 194-216; H. Schwartz, Tree, pp. 457-458. See also J. M. Bradshaw, God’s Image 1, pp. 585-590.

[10]O. S. Wintermute, Jubilees, 4:15, p. 62.

[11]Ibid., 5:2, p. 62.

[12] https://endtimesrevelations.files.wordpress.com/2011/12/noahs-flood2.jpg

[13]H. W. Nibley, Abraham 2000, pp. 164-165.

[14M. J. bin Gorion (Berdichevsky), Von der Urzeit, 1:186; M. J. bin Gorion (Berdichevsky), Die Sagen, p. 146: “Auch Noah und seine Shneschrien und weinten in ihrer Angst und hattengrosse Furcht, dennsiewaren der Pforte des Todesnahe” [Noah and his sons cried and wept in anxiety and had great fear, for they were near the gate of death].

[15]W. F. Albright, Yahweh and the Gods, p. 99.

[16]H. Freedman et al., Midrash, 32:11, 1:256. Cf. J. Neusner, Genesis Rabbah 1, 32:10:5, p. 338.

[17] Ether 6:6, 8.

[18] Genesis 7:18.

[19] Genesis 1:2. The singular rather than the plural term for “water” appears in JST OT2, the source of Moses 2:2 (S. H. Faulring et al., Original Manuscripts, p. 595). However “waters” (Hebrew mayim) the original term in Genesis, is used in JST OT1 as well as in the later translation of the book of Abraham. This raises the possibility that the change in OT2 was made erroneously or on John Whitmer’s initiative rather than the Prophet’s (see K. P. Jackson, Book of Moses, p. 10).

[20]V. P. Hamilton, Genesis 1-17, p. 267. Though differing in detail, a number of Jewish sources describe the similar process of the removal of the Shekhinah-representing God’s presence-in various stages, and its return at the dedication of the Tabernacle. See, e.g., H. Schwartz, Tree, p. 51, see also pp. 55-56.

[21]V. P. Hamilton, Genesis 1-17, p. 267.

[22] Although Walton credited Joseph Smith’s explicit use of the Hiphil-like term “caused” in the book of Abraham (e.

g., Abraham 4:4, 4:17) to the influence of the Prophet’s Hebrew teacher (M. T. Walton, Professor Seixas, p. 42), Moses 2:2 provides a clear instance where a similar construction involving the same verb was explicitly added in the Joseph Smith Translation in 1830 (S. H. Faulring et al., Original Manuscripts, OT1, p. 86), five years before Hebrew study began in Kirtland.

[23] Abraham 4:2.

[24] Cf. Isaiah 45:7 and N. M. Sarna, Genesis, p. 6.

[25]N. Wyatt, Darkness, p. 96.

[26]M. Barker, Gate, p. 120. Among the sources cited by Barker in defense of this conclusion are such widespread themes as Philo’s idea of the Logos as the “shadow of God” (Philo, Interpretation 3, 3, 96, p. 61) and a version of the creation story that passed through the hands of the Gnostics (R. A. Bullard et al., Archons, 95, p. 168).

[27] Psalm 18:10.

[28] Psalm 18:9. Cf. Exodus 24:15-18.

[29] Psalm 18:11.

[30] Cf. M. Meyer, Secret Book of John, 29:135-136, p. 130:

It did not happen the way that Moses said, “They hid in an ark” [Genesis 7:7]. Rather, they hid in a particular place, not only Noah, but also many other people from the unshakable generation. They entered that place and hid in a bright cloud. Noah knew about his supremacy [“he (Noah) recognized his authority” (F. Wisse, Apocryphon of John, 29:12, p. 121); “Noah was aware of his divine calling” (H. W. Nibley, Enoch, p. 268)]. With him was the enlightened one who had enlightened them, since the first ruler had brought darkness upon the whole earth.

[31]H. W. Nibley, Tenting, p. 41. Cf. W. Shakespeare, Winter’s Tale, 3:3:84-86: “I am not to say it is a sea, for it is now the sky, betwixt the firmament and it you cannot thrust a bodkin’s point.” A hymn of self-praise by the Sumerian king Sulgi of the Ur III Dynasty speaks of sky-travel via the royal magur-boat, e.g.: “The king, the [pure] magur-boat, [which traverses the sky]” (J. Klein, Three Sulgi Hymns, Sulgi D, 48, p. 75); “His shining royal magur-boat… Which… was shining in the midst of the sky” (ibid., Sulgi D, 355-356, p. 87). Magur-boats were also used for divine travel (e.g., the magur-boat of Enki) (ibid., p. 118 n. 354-361). See also P. Artzi et al., Bar-Ilan Studies in Assyriology: Dedicated to Pinhas Artzi, pp. 65-136, esp. pp. 96, 105-107.

[32] https://www.creation-answers.com/flood.htm, 27 June 2012.

[33]N. Wyatt, Darkness, p. 93.

[34] Cf. 2 Peter 3:6: “… the world that then was, being overflowed with water, perished.”

[35]G. W. E. Nickelsburg, 1 Enoch 1, 83:3-4, p. 345. Compare with Nickelsburg’s paraphrase of this reversion to “primordial chaos”: “Heaven’s canopy-stretched out at creation to separate the waters above from the deep-is torn off and hurled onto the earth, which collapses and sinks back into the abyss” (ibid., p. 349 n. 3-4).

[36] Genesis 7:18.

[37] Genesis 1:2.

[38]E. A. Harper, You Shall Make, p. 54. Cf. L. M. Morales, The Tabernacle Pre-Figured (pre-publication draft), pp. 160-162. Morales argues that the “building and filling of the Ark… exhibit a correspondence with the building’ and filling of the cosmos” at the time of Creation (ibid., p. 161).

[39]E. A. Harper, You Shall Make, p. 54.

[40]L. M. Morales, The Tabernacle Pre-Figured (pre-publication draft), p. 163.

[41] Cf. H. W. Nibley, Treasures, p. 185, where he argues from Mandaean and Gnostic sources describing the process of creating new worlds through a “colonizing process called planting.'” “[T]hose spirits that bring their treasures to a new world are called Plants,’ more rarely seeds,’ of their father or Planter’ in another world [cf. Adam’s “planting” (E. S. Drower, Prayerbook, #378, pp. 283, 286, 290)]. Every planting goes out from a Treasure House, either as the essential material elements or as the colonizers themselves, who come from a sort of mustering-area called the Treasure-house of Souls.'”

[42] The word describing the agent of divine movement is expressed in the beginning of the story of Creation and in the story of the Flood using the same Hebrew term, ruach (in Genesis 1:2, the KJV translates this as “spirit,” while in Genesis 8:1 it is rendered as “wind”). In the former, the ruach is described as “moving” using the Hebrew verb merahepet, which literally “denotes a physical activity of flight over water” (M. S. Smith, Priestly Vision, p. 55), however Walton has argued that the wider connotation in both the Creation and Flood accounts expresses “a state of preparedness” (J. H. Walton, Genesis 1, p. 149): “ruach is related to the presence of the deity, preparing to participate in Creation” (ibid., p. 149).

Consistent with this reading that understands this verse as a period of divine preparation, the creation story in the Joseph Smith’s book of Abraham employs the term “brooding” rather than “moving” as we find in the King James Version. Note that this change is consistent with the English translation given Hebrew grammar book that was studied by Joseph Smith in Kirtland (see J. Seixas, Manual, p. 31).John Milton (H. J. Hodges, Dove; J. Milton, Paradise Lost, 1:19-22, p. 16; cf. Augustine, Literal, 18:36; E. A. W. Budge, Cave, p. 44) interpreted the passage similarly in Paradise Lost, drawing from images such as the dove sent out by Noah (Genesis 8:6-12), the dove at Jesus’ baptism (John 1:32), and a hen protectively covering her young with her wing (Luke 13:34):

[T]hou from the first

<p style="margin-left: 18pt; text-indent: 20.

<hr class=’system-pagebreak’ /><hr class=’system-pagebreak’ /><hr class=’system-pagebreak’ />9pt;”>Wast present, and with mighty wings outspread

Dovelike satst brooding on the vast abyss

And mad’st it pregnant.”

“Brooding” enjoys rich connotations, including, as Nibley observes (H. W. Nibley, Before Adam, p. 69), not only “to sit or incubate [eggs] for the purpose of hatching” but also:

… “to dwell continuously on a subject.” Brooding is just the right word-a quite long quiet period of preparation in which apparently nothing was happening. Something was to come out of the water, incubating, waiting-a long, long time.

Some commentators emphatically deny any connection of the Hebrew term with the concept of brooding (e.g., U. Cassuto, Adam to Noah, pp. 24-25). However, the “brooding” interpretation is not only attested by a Syriac cognate (F. Brown et al., Lexicon, 7363, p. 934b) but also has a venerable history, going back at least to Rashi who spoke specifically of the relationship between the dove and its nest. In doing so, he referred to the Old French term acoveter, related both to the modern French couver (from Latin cubare-to brood and protect) and couvrir (from Latin cooperire-to cover completely). Intriguingly, this latter sense is related to the Hebrew term for the atonement, kipper (M. Barker, Atonement; A. Rey, Dictionnaire, 1:555).

Going further, Barker admits the possibility of a subtle wordplay in examining the reversal of consonantal sounds between “brood/hover” and “atone”: “The verb for hover’ is rchp, the middle letter is cheth, and the verb for atone’ is kpr, the initial letter being a kaph, which had a similar sound. The same three consonantal sounds could have been word play, rchp/kpr” (M. Barker, June 11 2007). “There is sound play like this in the temple style” (ibid.; see M. Barker, Hidden, pp. 15-17). In this admittedly speculative interpretation, one might see an image of God, prior to the first day of Creation, figuratively “hovering/atoning” [rchp/kpr] over the singularity of the inchoate universe, just as the Ark smeared with pitch [kaphar] later moved over the face of the waters “when the waters cover[ed] over and atone[d] for the violence of the world” (E. A. Harper, You Shall Make, p. 4).

[43] 1 Peter 3:20.

[44] In the following chiastic structuring of the account, Wenham demonstrates the pattern of “waiting” throughout the story, as well as the centrality of the theme of Genesis 8:1: “But God remembered Noah” (G. J. Wenham, Genesis 1-15, p. 157):

7 days of waiting for flood (7:4)

               7 days of waiting for flood (7:10)

                               40 days of flood (7:17a)

                                               150 days of water triumphing (7:24)

                                               150 days of water waning (8:3)

                               40 days of waiting (8:6)

               7 days of waiting (8:10)

7 days of waiting (8:12)

[45]J. H. Sailhamer, Genesis, p. 89 observes:

The description of God’s rescue of Noah foreshadows God’s deliverance of Israel in the Exodus. Just as later “God remembered his covenant” (Exodus 2:24) and sent “a strong east wind” to dry up the waters before his people (Exodus 14:21) so that they “went through… on dry ground” (Exodus 14:22), so also in the story of the Flood we read that “God remembered” those in the ark and sent a “wind” over the waters (Genesis 8:1) so that his people might come out on “dry ground” (Genesis 8:14).

[46] See Genesis 8:4.

[47]B. T. Arnold, Genesis 2009, p. 104.