“Here, in Genesis 2:7, the Lord God “formed” man; He did not create man. Back in Genesis 1:26 God created man, bara, created man out of nothing, He did not form man. Three times in Genesis 1 verse 27 we are told that man was created or bara. Here in Chapter 2 verse 7, the word “formed” and not “created” is used.
“This original word used here is not bara, but is actually the word: “3335 Yatsar prob. identical with 3334 (through the squeezing into shape); ([comp. 3331]); to mould into a form; espec. as a potter; … 3334 yatsar a prim. root; to press (intrans.) … 3331 yatsa a prim. root; to strew as a surface…”4.4
“The use of the term yatsar or to form here is clearly not bara. This word yatsar by definition, requires something from which to make something else. In fact, in that sense bara and yatsar are mutually exclusive; in that bara precludes the use of any raw materials, and requires by definition that the product be made from nothing; and yatsar, means only to squeeze mould or form, thus requiring something to begin with to be used to make the product; as with yatsar, must be formed from something. It is the forming or pressing of something from something else; and not the creation of the something from nothing; that is the process involved with yatsar.
“In addition, God did not speak here. He did not say “Let man be formed from the dust from the ground,” or anything else for that matter, as he did with bara. The account is more of a third person narrative of what transpired.
“We are also told precisely what Adam was formed from; which again precludes bara. Man was formed from “dust from the ground.” Dust is the translation for: “6083 aphar from 6080; dust (as powdered or gray); hence clay, earth, mud: - ashes, dust, earth, ground, morter, powder, rubbish.” “6080 aphar a prim. root; mean. either to be gray or perh. rather to pulverize; used only as denom. from 6083, to be dust: - cast [dust)].”4.5
“The sense here of the word aphar, seems to be one of useless matter. No precise definition of the word “morter” is readily available; but it appears to be similar to the word “mortar” in English. The common belief is that it was the soil or ground from which this man was formed; but that is not really a fair interpretation of this word. Dust is really otherwise useless matter. It is believed that most people who are allergic to “dust” are not really allergic to the particulate matter, but rather the mite waste contained therein. The use of the terms “powder” and “rubbish” gives a good understanding of the meaning of this word, which is translated as “dust.“ So God formed what is considered to be the greatest of his creations, from what is generally considered to be otherwise useless and undesirable material.
“It should be noted that there is a twofold process going on here. First God formed the man from useless dust, but that produced only the vessel. After He formed the vessel, He “breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living being.” The second half of the process was bringing the vessel into a “living being.” Some translations use the words “living soul.” This could also be termed into connected soul. When God breathed into man‘s nostrils this breath of life, the soul and the body became connected and physical life began.”—excerpt from “MeekRaker Beginnings…” p.64-65 ©2017 QPG, LLC all rights reserved
4.4 Strong, James. Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance of the Bible. © 1890 James Strong, Madison, NJ p. 51 (Hebrew)
4.5 Strong, James. Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance of the Bible. © 1890 James Strong, Madison, NJ p. 90 (Hebrew)