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Author Topic:   Genesis Creation Stories: Sequence Contradictions?
Kelly. J. Wilson
Inactive Junior Member


Message 1 of 124 (151493)
10-20-2004 11:44 PM


More liberal scholars cite the inconsistencies in the Genesis creation stories, as evidence that they are meant to be considered allegory. In doing so, they abandon a literal creation view, which allows for an easier acceptance of the evolutionary view of origins and development. More conservatives individuals, have in many ways dismissed the scientific community, except for those who identify themselves as scientific creationists by maintaining that real science in no way contradicts with the Biblical view of origins. Traditionally the Jewish and Christian churches have interpreted the Genesis creation stories quite literally. Those who reject the literal interpretation have identified inconsistencies in the Creation stories, as evidence that such stories are not to be interpreted literally.

I shall identify the most common inconsistency that they provide. Genesis 1: 25 states “And God made the beasts of the earth…” and verse 26 states “Then God said, ‘Let us make man in our image…’.” The author of this first creation story is clearly showing that the animals were created and then man. This leads to some difficulty because the second Creation story, states in Genesis 2:18-19, that “It is not good that man should be alone…Out of the ground the YHWH formed every beast of the field and birds of the air, and brought them to Adam to see what he would call them.”

To some, it seems as if one of the stories is in error, for they stories do appear to be contradicting each other. In the Genesis 1 creation story, birds are created on the fifth day, and animals come before humans, but here in the second creation story, both appear after man.

Some translators have changed Genesis 2: 19 to read, “Out of the ground YHWH had formed every…” In adding the word ‘had’ they make it clear that YHWH created such things before humankind. I believe they are correct in their assessment that the creation stories favor the animals being created before the humans, however I disagree with the way they go about it. I feel that they have no right to change the message of what they feel are Sacred Texts, just because of their own presuppositions. Such a tactic is underhanded and does not promote honest dialogue.

Objectivity is my goal. One does not need to change the message of the text, just to strengthen their own position. The Jews never bothered to change such a verse, because they never saw the contradiction that many see today. The statement that the second creation story uses is ‘beasts of the fields,’ and this is very different from ‘beasts’ or another common phrase ‘beasts of the earth.’ “Beasts of the fields,’ is a phrase which is the direct opposite of cattle. If God created all beasts and birds after humankind, then why neglect to mention of cattle? According to Genesis they certainly existed for they are interestingly mentioned one verse later, when we are told that all the cattle was named by Adam. The simple truth is that creation story number two is not a chronological account, but just a topical account of certain events. The focus of the verse that is seemingly contradictory, is not that certain beasts and birds are created after Adam, but that because such creatures that were not geographically located nearby they had to be brought to him. If the focus of the verse was that creatures were created after Adam, then certainly this would have included all, including the cattle that were very specifically neglected. What other purpose could there be in using the direct antonym for cattle in describing certain animals?

Also, the Jewish people always believed that the two accounts were complimentary and that no contradictions existed. In fact the Sanhedrin used to state, “When asked why man was created on the sixth day, after the creation of all the other animals, we would respond: 'So that just in case you become overbearing we may remind you that the gnats were created before you.' "

Kelly J. Wilson


Replies to this message:
 Message 4 by jar, posted 10-21-2004 12:51 AM Kelly. J. Wilson has responded
 Message 11 by crashfrog, posted 10-29-2004 12:57 AM Kelly. J. Wilson has not yet responded

  
AdminJar
Inactive Member


Message 2 of 124 (151498)
10-20-2004 11:53 PM


Thread moved here from the Proposed New Topics forum.
  
Adminnemooseus
Director
Posts: 3883
Joined: 09-26-2002


Message 3 of 124 (151505)
10-21-2004 12:17 AM


There also is another recent topic on this
Genesis 1 vs. Genesis 2

Members may wish to consult this other topic also.

It had been turning into a big mess, so I gave it a temporary closing. Then I forgot all about it. Guess I'll give it a bump, and and a final closure message.

Adminnemooseus


    
jar
Member
Posts: 30984
From: Texas!!
Joined: 04-20-2004
Member Rating: 4.6


Message 4 of 124 (151510)
10-21-2004 12:51 AM
Reply to: Message 1 by Kelly. J. Wilson
10-20-2004 11:44 PM


Just a few comments.

Traditionally the Jewish and Christian churches have interpreted the Genesis creation stories quite literally.

Actually, no, that is not the case. In fact, just about every major Christian and Jewish Church has come out in favor of teaching the TOE and opposing creationism. One of the big reasons is that almost no Christian sect take Genesis creation stories literally.

One of the reasons, but only one, is the mutually exclusive descriptions found in Genesis 1 & 2. But a far bigger reason is that there is simply overwhelming evidence that evolution happened as seen in the physical evidence and that the stories as outlined in Genesis simply never happened.


Aslan is not a Tame Lion
This message is a reply to:
 Message 1 by Kelly. J. Wilson, posted 10-20-2004 11:44 PM Kelly. J. Wilson has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 6 by Kelly. J. Wilson, posted 10-21-2004 11:52 AM jar has not yet responded
 Message 7 by Lysimachus, posted 10-27-2004 10:13 PM jar has responded

  
Adminnemooseus
Director
Posts: 3883
Joined: 09-26-2002


Message 5 of 124 (151512)
10-21-2004 1:10 AM


Keep this topic as a purely theological discussion?
Might we keep this topic as a purely theological discussion?

A discussion of the Bible, without bringing in worldly scientific considerations?

Adminnemooseus


Comments on moderation procedures (or wish to respond to admin messages)? - Go to
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Kelly. J. Wilson
Inactive Junior Member


Message 6 of 124 (151627)
10-21-2004 11:52 AM
Reply to: Message 4 by jar
10-21-2004 12:51 AM


Jar,
I said traditionally they had interpretted the stories literally. That said, upon the emergence of the TOE combined with the gradual acceptance of Higher Critical interpretational methods, certainly most abandoned the literal view. What I said previously was quite true, if you read it in context. Please do so next time.
Kelly J. Wilson
This message is a reply to:
 Message 4 by jar, posted 10-21-2004 12:51 AM jar has not yet responded

  
Lysimachus
Member (Idle past 3356 days)
Posts: 380
Joined: 05-30-2004


Message 7 of 124 (153537)
10-27-2004 10:13 PM
Reply to: Message 4 by jar
10-21-2004 12:51 AM


quote:
Actually, no, that is not the case. In fact, just about every major Christian and Jewish Church has come out in favor of teaching the TOE and opposing creationism. One of the big reasons is that almost no Christian sect take Genesis creation stories literally.

One of the reasons, but only one, is the mutually exclusive descriptions found in Genesis 1 & 2. But a far bigger reason is that there is simply overwhelming evidence that evolution happened as seen in the physical evidence and that the stories as outlined in Genesis simply never happened.


There's only one problen jar. The reason why you think there is "overwhelming evidence that evolution happened" is because that is where your nose sniffs. You will acquire the information you are interested in, thus clouding your mind and thinking "it's overwhelming evidence". Problem is, you're not looking past your own nose. It's simply known, there are others who disagree with you. Others will tell you "there is no overwhelming evidence", and in fact will say "there is overwhelming evidence against it". It all has to do with what you're looking for--and what you "wish" to be true. You will always find apparent information to back your desired wishes. The internet has proven that. It's time internet users climb out of their shell.

This message has been edited by Lysimachus, 10-27-2004 09:13 PM


~Lysimachus
This message is a reply to:
 Message 4 by jar, posted 10-21-2004 12:51 AM jar has responded

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 Message 9 by crashfrog, posted 10-28-2004 2:52 AM Lysimachus has not yet responded

    
jar
Member
Posts: 30984
From: Texas!!
Joined: 04-20-2004
Member Rating: 4.6


Message 8 of 124 (153540)
10-27-2004 10:33 PM
Reply to: Message 7 by Lysimachus
10-27-2004 10:13 PM


There's only one problen jar. The reason why you think there is "overwhelming evidence that evolution happened" is because that is where your nose sniffs.

That might be true, but so far every major Christian Church has also come to the conclusion that there is overwhelming evidence to support the Theory of Evolution. That is why the Episcopal Church, Methodist Church, Lutheran Church, Roman Catholic Church, Presbyterian Church among others have come out in support of teaching the TOE and opposing Creationism.

I freely admit that a few fringe sects still try to support a literal Genesis, just as there are a few fringe groups that support the Flood or Exodus myths, but they are not mainstream Christian beliefs.

The fact remains that Genesis itself is contradictory and Genesis 1 & 2 are mutually exclusive.

edited to add an 'a' to Lutheran.

This message has been edited by jar, 10-27-2004 09:38 PM


Aslan is not a Tame Lion
This message is a reply to:
 Message 7 by Lysimachus, posted 10-27-2004 10:13 PM Lysimachus has not yet responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 107 by Angel, posted 11-08-2004 5:21 AM jar has responded

  
crashfrog
Inactive Member


Message 9 of 124 (153566)
10-28-2004 2:52 AM
Reply to: Message 7 by Lysimachus
10-27-2004 10:13 PM


Others will tell you "there is no overwhelming evidence", and in fact will say "there is overwhelming evidence against it". It all has to do with what you're looking for--and what you "wish" to be true.

Why don't we look at all the evidence, then?

You get a degree in evolutionary biology from a accredited university, and I'll be happy to read whatever creationist sources you prefer. Of course, I've read a lot of them, already. And that's rather the thing - over here on the evo side, you'll find most of us have read a lot of Johnson, Behe, Demski, Strobel, etc. But its rare indeed to find a creationist with any training or familiarity with the biological sciences. Maybe you've noticed that, most of the time here, we're not refuting anti-evolution arguments or discussing biological evidence. Most of the time, we're correcting someone's catastrophic misunderstandings about basic biology.

You'll find that the science-minded don't generally restrict their reading; to the contrary, we recognize that progress in science comes more often from opposition to dogma than otherwise. It seems to be creationists, largely, who can't be bothered to aquaint themselves with the information from the other side.

Not surprising, really. It's the folks on your side who believe that exposure to evolutionary science is tantamount to consorting with devils.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 7 by Lysimachus, posted 10-27-2004 10:13 PM Lysimachus has not yet responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 10 by Kelly. J. Wilson, posted 10-29-2004 12:47 AM crashfrog has not yet responded
 Message 122 by Guido Arbia, posted 01-08-2005 7:31 PM crashfrog has not yet responded

  
Kelly. J. Wilson
Inactive Junior Member


Message 10 of 124 (153992)
10-29-2004 12:47 AM
Reply to: Message 9 by crashfrog
10-28-2004 2:52 AM


Off-Topic
The last couple messages are off topic. The issue that I introdcued is whether there are sequential contradictions between the stories found in Genesis 1 and 2. I would make the case that there is not. It is an off-topic issue whether the creation stories find themselves in contradiction with modern science, or even whether they should be interpreted literally. Those are fascinating debates, but not ones that deal directly with the issue I introduced.
Kelly J. Wilson
This message is a reply to:
 Message 9 by crashfrog, posted 10-28-2004 2:52 AM crashfrog has not yet responded

  
crashfrog
Inactive Member


Message 11 of 124 (153996)
10-29-2004 12:57 AM
Reply to: Message 1 by Kelly. J. Wilson
10-20-2004 11:44 PM


The simple truth is that creation story number two is not a chronological account, but just a topical account of certain events.

But isn't the only reason you assume it's not a chronological account is because if it were, it would contradict the first story?

It certainly uses chronological word cues: "then", etc. And look at the language here:

quote:
So out of the ground the LORD God formed every beast of the field and every bird of the air, and brought them to the man to see what he would call them; and whatever the man called every living creature, that was its name.

See that? Every beast of the field and every bird of the air, not just some of them. It's clear that Genesis 2 is a chronological account of the creation of man, and then, the creation of all animals as potential helpers for man.

The only evidence you have for Gen 2 not being chronological in nature is that, otherwise, it contradicts Gen 1. So if it's your argument that Gen 1 and Gen 2 don't contradict each other because Gen 2 isn't chronological, you're making a circular argument. You've used your conclusion as one of your premises.

As for this:

“Beasts of the fields,’ is a phrase which is the direct opposite of cattle.

In what way, exactly? Cattle are beasts, and where would you find them, except for fields? Cattle are beasts of the field, obviously.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 1 by Kelly. J. Wilson, posted 10-20-2004 11:44 PM Kelly. J. Wilson has not yet responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 12 by RustyShackelford, posted 10-30-2004 2:06 AM crashfrog has responded

  
RustyShackelford 
Inactive Suspended Member


Message 12 of 124 (154342)
10-30-2004 2:06 AM
Reply to: Message 11 by crashfrog
10-29-2004 12:57 AM


I think Kelly was suggesting that Hebrew terminology for beastes of the field is different for other animals.....BTW, I find it ironic that a man could critisize others for not understanding biology and then make the assertion that all animals live in fields.
This message is a reply to:
 Message 11 by crashfrog, posted 10-29-2004 12:57 AM crashfrog has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 13 by RustyShackelford, posted 10-30-2004 2:08 AM RustyShackelford has not yet responded
 Message 15 by crashfrog, posted 10-30-2004 6:13 AM RustyShackelford has not yet responded

  
RustyShackelford 
Inactive Suspended Member


Message 13 of 124 (154344)
10-30-2004 2:08 AM
Reply to: Message 12 by RustyShackelford
10-30-2004 2:06 AM


While on that topic, exactly where is Behe lacking in his understanding of biology, Crash?
This message is a reply to:
 Message 12 by RustyShackelford, posted 10-30-2004 2:06 AM RustyShackelford has not yet responded

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AdminNosy
Administrator
Posts: 4754
From: Vancouver, BC, Canada
Joined: 11-11-2003


Message 14 of 124 (154361)
10-30-2004 3:00 AM
Reply to: Message 13 by RustyShackelford
10-30-2004 2:08 AM


T o p i c !
Sorry, Rusty, Crash, Behe and ID are not the subject of this thread. Crash started leading this astray but there is not need to follow him off into the bush.

ID is under another forum. If you wish to propose a topic for that or add to one that is currently there please do Rusty.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 13 by RustyShackelford, posted 10-30-2004 2:08 AM RustyShackelford has not yet responded

  
crashfrog
Inactive Member


Message 15 of 124 (154378)
10-30-2004 6:13 AM
Reply to: Message 12 by RustyShackelford
10-30-2004 2:06 AM


I think Kelly was suggesting that Hebrew terminology for beastes of the field is different for other animals.....BTW, I find it ironic that a man could critisize others for not understanding biology and then make the assertion that all animals live in fields.

It's called "poetic license." "Beasts of the field" is a poetic way of referring to all beasts. It's parallel structure with "birds of the air," which refers to all birds, even though some birds are flightless.

It's obvious that Genesis 1 and 2 are poetic accounts, as specific poetic devices are used. In that context, it's ludicrous to suggest that "beasts of the fields" refers to anything but all animals.

At any rate, cattle live in fields, which was my specific assertion.

As for Kelly's "Hebrew terminology", I haven't seen a single word of Hebrew in her post. Perhaps she could substantiate her assertions? Or maybe you could, since you feel comfortable arguing in her stead?


This message is a reply to:
 Message 12 by RustyShackelford, posted 10-30-2004 2:06 AM RustyShackelford has not yet responded

Replies to this message:
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