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Beginnings in Genesis

January 14, 2008

Following a thoroughly enjoyable course at the Belfast Bible College on the Prologue to Genesis I made a promise to post some additional notes on the blog. And so my intention is to organise some of the material in a blog post friendly manner.

There are all sorts of reasons why we shouldn’t read these chapters—too strange; too controversial; too childish; unnecessary for mature adult faith; too unsophisticated for our more developed tastes or they’ve been superseded by the New Testament.

Yes they are strange. Yes they are, at times, controversial. But I’m not sure that I’d accept any of the other objections. In fact, I’d want to argue that all things are found in embryo here. This is where we must begin.

Some things need to be said.

These chapters give us a clue as to how it all began. These opening chapters help us understand the nature of relationships in this cosmos. They tell of God’s relationship to us and to his creation. And ours to God and the created order. More than this they tells us of the inherent value of human beings; who we are and what we are for. These chapters tell us of the horror of sin and the promise of redemption. They tell us of the origins of the universe, of all life, the human race, the importance of work, of marriage, the intrusion of evil, crime, punishment. The beginnings of language, science, government, culture, technology, nations, religion.

All the things that go to make up the richness of life on this planet, and all those things that serve to ruin it, are present here in these early chapters.

It is in this spirit of inquiry that we will proceed, seeking to explore and uncover the mysteries of the chapters, even as Adam and Eve explored the wonders of Eden as instructed by God.

Along the way we’ll take a number of excursions, along applied routes which will explore things like the up and down nature of human identity, the shape of urban living and the fight for significance.


From → Genesis

  1. To me, these chapters are like the first few scenes of an epic movie. So rich in information that is important to the rest of the story. Much of it is subtle, but it is there if we look expectantly. I look forward to your sharing…

  2. asharedadventure permalink

    There’s something almost enchanting about Genesis, you feel pulled back to it, drawn to it, as well as a sense of excitment and deep satisfaction every time we revisit it. It brings to mind the image of a child who sits at the feet of it’s father or mother drinking in every detail of their birth or how their parents got together, details they have heard so many times that they know the stories by heart but savour all the more with each retelling. I look forward to the journey.

  3. As one of the students in the class, I can honestly say that I can never look at Genesis in the same way again. As a member of a church seriously re-evaluating our worship for the first time in many years the fundamental lessons taught in Genesis have proved invaluable and have already been used to good effect.

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