The word “ruwach” means “breath”, specifically, “breath of the nostrils”, however, “ruwach” is also used to denote “wind” (the breath of God’s nostrils.) The same word, “ruwach”, is also used to denote “spirit”. In the following three examples “breath” is the most logical translation, but “wind” doesn’t seem out of place. “Spirit” does seem a little awkward in this context:
Exodus 15:8 With the breath (ruwach) of thy nostrils the waters were gathered together.
Exodus 15:8 With the wind (ruwach) of thy nostrils the waters were gathered together.
Exodus 15:8 With the spirit (ruwach) of thy nostrils the waters were gathered together.
In the next two examples the most logical translation is “breath”.
Genesis 7:15 They went unto Noah into the ark, two and two of all flesh, wherein is the breath (ruwach) of life.
Genesis 7:22 All in whose nostrils was the breath (ruwach) of life, of all that was in the dry land, died.
In the following two verses “ruwach” logically translates as “wind” with the implication being that the east wind is a blast from the nostrils of God.
Exodus 10:13 Moses stretched forth his rod over the land of Egypt, and the LORD brought an east wind (ruwach) upon the land all that day, and all that night; and when it was morning, the east wind (ruwach) brought locusts.
Exodus 14:21 Moses stretched out his hand over the sea, and the LORD caused the sea to go back by a strong eastwind (ruwach) all that night, and made the sea dry land, and the waters were divided.
In the next verse the wind “of thy nostrils” heaps the water into a huge wave and thickens the heart of the sea.
Exodus 15:8 With the breath (ruwach) of thy nostrils the waters were gathered together, the waves stood upright as an heap, and the depths were congealed in the heart of the sea.
In Exodus 31:3 and Numbers 11:25 “ruwach” is translated as “spirit”, however, “breath” remains intrinsic even when “ruwach” is translated as “spirit”.
Exodus 31:3 And I have filled him with the breath/spirit (ruwach) of God, in wisdom, and in understanding
Numbers 11:25 The LORD came down in a cloud, and spoke unto him, and took of the breath/spirit (ruwach) that was in him, and gave it unto the seventy elders…
In Numbers 11:31 the breath/wind of the LORD is blowing across the sea, gathering birds and bringing them into land.
Numbers 11:31 And there went forth a wind/breath (ruwach) from the LORD, and brought quails from the sea, and let them fall by the camp…
In Genesis 1:2 we encounter the word “ruwach” for the first time as God’s breath ripples across the surface of the water bringing it alive.
Genesis 1:2 The earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep and the breath of God rippled upon the surface of the waters.
Water is inside of us and around us in oceans, rivers and lakes. It’s beneath our feet in underground springs and rivers, and when “the Heavens open” it pours down from above.
Everyone knows that water sustains life, but not everyone knows God has endowed ocean water with a life force of its own:
And the breath (ruwach) of God rippled upon the surface of the waters.
Since that first breath, the ocean has been ever-pregnant, ever-teaming with life.
I have always thought of ocean water as being the Earth’s amniotic fluid, and if you are incredulous it may be because you do not know that ocean water is a living substance with near identical properties to the amniotic fluid of the mammalian womb.
Ocean water diluted to the correct concentration, contains almost the same content of minerals and trace elements as found in mammalian blood plasma.
God breathed into the ocean, and transformed still waters into living plasma.
Life sprang from marine amniotic fluid, and life continues to develop in mammalian amniotic fluid.
John 7:38 He that believeth on me, as the scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water.
Baptism is a symbol of death and rebirth.