Compartmentalizing Genesis

The fact that we see design throughout life shouldn’t surprise us if we realize that there is a designer behind it all. This universe is no accident, nor is the life that resides in it. Design is evident, and with that we have a first and compelling argument for the existence of a transcendent creator God. The way Genesis presents this God also appears to preemptively oppose the coming false interpretations of His being and creation.

  • In regard to Atheism, Genesis asserts a creation by God, not some cosmic accident
  • In regard to Pantheism, the details of Genesis reveal God as being transcendental to this reality, existing outside of its dimensional confines
  • In regard to Polytheism, Genesis clearly declares the existence of a single God

Furthermore, Genesis declares that this transcendental and sovereign God created all matter, all life, and – His special creation – mankind, by extension nullifying arguments of materialism, evolutionism, humanism, and uniformism. The language of Genesis is clear on all these points, but the revelations uncovered by modern discoveries completely and dramatically reinforce them!

Just as design is evident in life, so too we find it within the structure of the Scriptures themselves. Though written by perhaps as many as forty different authors over a span of nearly two-thousand years, the overarching themes and details inextricably build upon one another, referencing forward and back across the Bible. So complex is the system we find that it cannot help but point us to something beyond human ability and reasoning.

The subtleties of design within Scripture take a backseat to the obvious elements of composition on display. Namely, we find that the Christian Bible is composed of two distinct parts: the Old Testament and the New Testament. The Old Testament, beyond the earliest days of supernatural creation and Biblical prehistory, presents the journey of the nation of Israel and the chosen people of God. The New Testament however focuses on the life and teachings of a particular man, Jesus Christ, who was revealed to be God incarnate. More than just another character in a story, Jesus was the promised Messiah, the coming kinsman redeemer who, by His own blood, would pay a debt for all mankind and the creation as a whole. The details of His person, while ultimately revealed in His life and teachings of the New Testament, were heavily foreshadowed – if in a sometimes cryptic fashion – millennia prior within the hallowed pages of the Old Testament. As St. Augustine is said to have quipped, “The New is in the Old concealed, while the Old is in the new revealed.”

For our purposes with this ongoing series into Biblical Prehistory, we will be focusing on Genesis, the Book of Beginnings. That foundational work is revered not just by the Christians, but also by the Jews – who share the work in their own Tanakh, and also the Muslims, which reference a number of the same accounts and figures of Genesis within their Qu’ran. Genesis, as presented in the Judeo-Christian account, is easily divided into two portions, with the first eleven chapters establishing what we will refer to as Biblical Prehistory, and the rest of Genesis – Chapters twelve to fifty – setting the stage for the birth of the nation of Israel.

Now, even amongst believers, there is some debate over the reality of the various figures noted in Genesis. The greatest targets of all for such skepticism are found in none other than Adam and Eve themselves. Could all of mankind have truly descended from a single pair of primal beings? Allegory, they say. Just myth and legend meant to convey a story. Friend, if you trust the Bible, indeed, if you trust Jesus Christ, then there can be no debate over such matters. Time and again, we find clear references to the details of Genesis being addressed by figures in the New Testament, with each instance reaffirming that ancient book’s historicity and authority as a witness to the birth of creation.

The Book of Genesis is, without doubt, critical to the Christian faith. It’s placement at the beginning not only reinforces its witnessing of the people and events detailed within its pages, but also underscores its necessity as foundational to all the teachings that would come to follow it.

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