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Proof and Reflection on Creation Account Gen 1-11 in the Old Testament

Updated on August 7, 2013

Proof and Reflection on Creation Account Gen 1-11 in the Old Testament

When you see the world and its beauty, have you ever asked yourself that who would create all these universe with its wonders , things that we can see by our own eyes and things that we cannot see by our eyes above. Do you believe that the world came into exist by itself or there is someone who creates and designs everything on earth and in heaven? I would like to have honest reflection on Gen 1-11 as historical, literal and actual event not as Folktales, Myths, Romances, and Legends etc. And in this article, I would like to reflect what I learn and believe about the account of Gen 1-11.

Reading through the chapters from Gen 1-11, I believe that all these events happened as the Scripture said. As Genesis 1 says, “in the beginning God created the heavens and the earth”. He is the creator of all the universe- visible and invisible. Though some critical scholars argue that Gen 1: 1-2:4a and Gen 2: 4b-3:24 come from two sources or traditions. I personally believe that these passages are from one sources or tradition because they support each other very well. In fact, the first passages- Gen 1:1-2-4a and the second passages do not contradict one another rather the first one mentions the account of creation in a general way but the second passages develop the account of creation in more detail particularly to the creation of human being and life. And the second passages act like the explanation of the first passages.

Regarding the possible questions such as “Did the story actually happen? If so what would be the implication and if not what would be the implication? How would you tell this account if your church member ask you?” I firmly believe that the story of creation account, the stories of fall, the flood and Babel tower starting from Gen 1-11 are an actual events and it happened literally as the Bible mentioned probably million years ago. But nobody knows the exact time except God who created and caused everything into reality. There are some who believe Gen 1-11 as Folktales and Myths because when they look at the genres and life settings from the scientific and geographical point of view etc, they see as impossible to be actual events. According to Encarta dictionary Folktale is a “traditional story; a story or legend that is passed down orally from one generation to the next and becomes part of a community’s tradition”[1]. Myth is “an ancient story: a traditional story about heroes or supernatural beings, often attempting to explain the origins of natural phenomena or aspects of human behavior”[2]. Though there can be a bit difference in the meaning of Folktales and Myths, they are putting together in one category. The problem about folktales and Myths is that their principles lie behind oral expression after generation to generation. And nobody knows whether the story is true or false. They are not sure whether it is true or false. Normally since it is folktales and myths, it can be said that they are not hundred percent trustworthy. The result is that it may be correct and it may not be correct. If it is real events, they will not call Folktales or Myths rather they will call history or actual story. In the same manner, if we believe that Gen 1-11 as Folktales or Myths, the possible implication is that the story or events in Genesis can be correct at the same time it can be false as well.

Some may say that our belief in Gen 1-11 do not affect our Christian life. But I do want to say that everything about our lives, beliefs, and actions are effected by the way how we believe in creation account. For example, if somebody does not know about what is in the book of Genesis, he will not think or bother about it. But if he knows, his belief on what he knows will surely effect his life toward God, self, to creations and even to others. If he does not care he may behave himself as he wishes or in the contrary, if he believes in that he may be responsive. If we say that we believe the account of Gen 1-11 as Folktales or Myths, not as real events.

First, that injects skeptics about the creator God who make everything visible and invisible of the universe. How can I say about that because the book of Genesis is the foundation that clearly tell us the God who created heavens and earth (Cf Jonah 1:9), human being, living creatures and firmaments of the world.

Second, we would need to evaluate our belief on the Bible. I believe that all scripture is God-breathed and it is infallible and trustworthy (II Tim 3:16). He gave us his words (the Bible) through his people over 40 writers of the Bible. Even though, they used their own literary styles and wisdom in expression, it is not that man 50% and God 50 % because while they were writing, they were guided by the Holy Spirit (II Peter 1:20-21). And they would not impose what is wrong and the things that God would not agree. Therefore, as I believe in the actual events of Gen 12 to the entire Bible, I believe the actual event of Genesis 1-11 as well.

Third, if the account of Gen 1-11 is just folktales or myths, how would we hundred percent dare to believe that there would be original Adam, eve and sins? I believe in the total depravity of man due to the event of Genesis 1-11 that “ Nevertheless, death reigned from the time of Adam to eh time of Moese, even over those who did not sin by breaking a command, as did Adam, who was a pattern fo the one to come” (Rom 5:12-14). If there is no original sin, why would Jesus should come and die for our sins? One of the reasons why Jesus came to this world is to save us from our sin and pay the penalty of our sin toward his Father so that we may be justified by grace through faith in Him (Eph 2:8-9; Eph 1:13) and received salvation.

Fourth, In Genesis, we are created in God’s images and we are also given responsibilities to rule over and take care of the creations of the earth, if those writings are just myths or folktales, why would we need to take it seriously?

Fifth, the other is that if we believe that all the rest of Genesis 12-50 are as historical facts, why don’t we believe Gen 1-11 as historical facts too because they are also written by God through the same author- Moses.

Sixth, I believe that creation account is God’s supernatural action. If we try to discover “how” “when” “where”, we would never discover and waste our time in vain because may be God keeps in mind that we don’t need to know. For instances, sometimes father keeps their words and not tell everything that is in their mind unless it is needed for their children to know. He is the father and he has rights to tell and not to tell. In the same manner, I believe in such a way that God tells us that he is the one who created all things and even our very lives; we are to just accept and appreciate for who our God is. Indeed, the more I read about the creation account the more I discover that how great is our God!. I am full of amazed for his wonderful works as Psalmist 19: 1 says, “ the heavens declare the glory of God and the skies proclaim the work of his hands” . This creation account and events in Gen 1-11 clearly express that there is none like our God. As the song writer says, “Lord, we can’t fathom even half from our wisest thinking, you are beyond our imagination. You are amazing God!” Since he created this world out of nothing and that shows he is the God of wonders. We dare to believe in him if we are believers of Christ. Sometimes, we are too wise may be wiser than God and even can’t believe God’s supernatural power. Indeed, if we can know everything about God from this world, he might not worthy to be God because he would be the same with us!

Seventh, to believe in the account of Genesis, it requires faith in Christ. I am not surprised for non-Christians and those who don’t have personal relationship with Christ because they are spiritually blinded people. They may be scientists, brilliant and deep thinkers and may earn four or five times their Doctorate degrees, until and unless they have personal relationship with God, they are spiritually blinded and they would never discover the secret wonders of God nor appreciate Him. Actually, how the world come into exist from God is a matter of faith, being connected with creator God through Jesus not a matter of wisdom. Nowadays, the human philosophical thinking tries to discover the creation account and research with archaeology and cosmology. Since they can’t discover the amazing and supernatural act of God in creation, they don’t believe this account as it is and said that it is impossible. After Darwin declared about his evolution theory, there are many who are cheated by his theory even among Christians. But for me personally, as the Bible itself claims that nothing is impossible with God. I believe in the creator God who is above all. Who did impossible things into possible even in the wonderful activities that we see in Gen 1-11.

Finally, I would like to conclude my reflection that Genesis is my fundamental faith about our creator God who not only created but also sustains all things. Therefore, who could say that the way how we believe in the story of Genesis would not affect our lives and mission in this world?

Do you have any comment or objection regarding this article? If you have, feel free to pour out your thoughts ...... God bless!

[1] Microsoft® Encarta® 2007. © 1993-2006 Microsoft Corporation. All rights reserved.

[2] Microsoft® Encarta® 2007. © 1993-2006


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    • Van Lal Hmangaih profile image

      Van Lal Hmangaih 6 years ago from Myanmar

      Thank you Dave Mathews,.. I do appreciate for taking your times, reading and writing beautiful comments . May God bless you

    • Dave Mathews profile image

      Dave Mathews 6 years ago from NORTH YORK,ONTARIO,CANADA

      This is a marvellous undertaking to explain Genesis as you are doing. Thank you.