December 7, 2015

Origin of Genesis

It’s through special revelation that (Moses) was inspired to write every letter of every word, which is inerrant and infallible because of special revelation.

I consider that roughly 2,400 years pass between creation and when the creation account is written. I talk about the problems with the idea that the story was passed down orally and the possibility that a written account existed which Moses used as a source and acted as an editor. I look at the documentary hypothesis that suggest two authors are involved in the writing of Genesis 1 and Genesis 2. I point out that special revelation is a trump card that can be used to explain away anything that's problematic, such as Moses being able to write about his death and what happened afterwards or why he switched back and forth between different forms of God's names.

Bonus thoughts:
  • Understanding the formation of the Bible gives it a concrete context, it's no longer a book of wisdom that fell out of the sky, but a book that's from a specific place and time.
  • With some interpretations of scripture, faith is almost an after-thought. With an entirely sovereign God who is in control from the first letter of the first word to the last letter of the last word, it's almost impossible to struggle with faith in things like the truth of the Bible in spite of the human fingerprints that were involved in every step of the creation and transmission of the sacred word. 
  • Special revelation gives you permission to ignore the handiwork of men by claiming it's a quirk of divine will, but it makes God seem capricious - 'use exact numbers in this verse and round the same number in that verse' 'But God, won't it seem like a contradiction?' 'not to me it doesn't.'
  • In the 975 years between Creation and the writing of the creation account, what did gender roles look like? Does human error explain away things like Lamech's marrying two wives and the acceptance of concubinage? Is it coincidence that the 'distortion' of roles took the form of giving men all the power and putting women in a secondary class? Is the 'restoration' of roles any different? It seems to me to be a kinder, gentler, version of the same thing in teaching and in practice it's hit or miss. So what did humans get wrong, giving women second class status or treating them as if they're second class people, or both? Are we really sure that we're not getting it wrong by sticking to the idea that God want's women to be second and subordinate?
  • If gender roles are of such importance, why is there more detail on the temple worship system that gender roles? Why did God wait until the New Testament to share this teaching when he had Moses whom he could have told these things to at some point? Was wandering forty years in the desert sufficient time to write down the instructions for temple worship but not nearly enough time to write down and teach gender roles?

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