Origins - Modern Implications of Genesis 1-11
Origins turns much of what Christians learned in Sunday School on its head in a revealing comparison of the Genesis narrative to the competing pagan narrative of the day. Relatively few Bible readers are familiar with the world of the ancient Near East, centered in Mesopotamia and its most prominent city, Babylon. The culture, literature, religions, geography, etc. of the early biblical period dramatically influenced what was written and why. Without an understanding of these elements, the purposes, meanings, and structure of the text are easily misread by modern readers, reducing the Genesis narrative to a collection of Sunday School stories.
Origins, while acknowledging the agendas of modern readers, remains on track in expounding on the ancient agenda. Paul Copan and Douglas Jacoby address the doubts of those who find stumbling blocks in early Genesis, facing the tough questions head on and providing biblical solutions to many of the "problem passages." Origins surprises and amazes all seekers, new believers, and veterans of Scripture alike as it devastates the polytheistic, pagan assumptions and proclaims the true God.
About the authors: Paul Copan (PhD Philosophy, Marquette) is the Pledger Family Chair of Philosophy and Ethics at Palm Beach Atlantic University. For six years he served as president of the Evangelical Philosophical Society. He has authored and edited over thirty Books, including The Zondervan Dictionary of Christianity and Science, Is God a Moral Monster: Making Sense of the God of the Old Testament, and When God Goes to Starbucks. Paul has contributed essays to over thirty Books, both scholarly and popular, and authored a number of articles in professional journals. In 2017, he was a Visiting Scholar at Oxford University. His website is www.paulcopan.com.
Douglas Jacoby is an international Bible teacher with degrees are from Drew, Harvard, and Duke. After serving as a minister for 20 years in Britain, Sweden, Australia, and the U.S., Douglas works as a freelance teacher and consultant, as well as an adjunct professor of theology at Lincoln Christian University. He has engaged in a number of debates with well-known atheists, imams, and rabbis. Since the late '90s, Douglas has led annual tours to the biblical world. Douglas has written over 30 books, recorded many podcasts, and has spoken in scores of universities and nations around the world.
I am only on chapter 6 of Origins and have already learned so many things than give me a much clearer and thorough understanding and appreciation of God. I never realized how much understanding the historical background of the day would improve my understanding of the Bible. And this is coming from a disciple of 35 years!
Hope you like the remaining chapters as much as the first six!
Every book of the Bible is better understood with some background and also careful reading in context. This makes Bible reading a real adventure !
I’m only about 1/4 through Origins now and so far am impressed . Having a different mindset from my modern day thinking as Douglas and Paul discuss is allowing me to have an even deeper understanding of not only Genesis, but the Bible as a whole. This book is enabling me to have a deeper cultural understanding of both the author(s) and the audience. Thank you.
Keep reading! Thanks for your enthusiasm. DJ
Origins offers a fresh perspective on the Book of Genesis. It was enlightening to learn the historical setting is a pagan culture. The idea of One God. did not exist. Embedded in pagan worship is the idea gods are emotional, unpredictable and selfish. In the time frame then, as well as now, are we introduced to the God who created us in His image. He is steadfast and devoted. The God in Genesis is real not a myth.
Doug and Paul are brilliant thinkers and have researched this topic thoroughly. They bring both a humble respect for scripture and a scholarly curiosity to understand what God is trying to teach us in the "introduction to the Bible" from Genesis 1-11. This reference will help you read Genesis in a way that respects the original author and audience, providing a bridge to our world so that we can better understand how these chapters were designed to re-orient the Israelites in Moses' time to understand the God who created the universe. This is incredibly appropriate today as many people have created gods in their own image, missing the Genesis author's intention to have us know the God who created us in His Image! Thank you Paul and Doug for making this material accessible to all!
You are welcome, Brett! We both deeply believe in the inspiration of the Word and the power of Genesis. Our approach may not gibe with what we learned in Sunday school, but we believe it's more faithful to the text than the more common simplistic approach. Thanks for your words.
The view presented in this book is very thought provoking. It has helped me think clearly about Genesis 1-11 and given me a fresh perspective on some challenging questions. It has been useful for campus evangelism, enabling me to address common "science vs Christianity" objections.