Bro CC Walker, editor of the Christadelphian Magazine after Robert Roberts, Wrote a series of articles in the magazine in 1910. Commenting on Genesis 1 he observed the evidence did not support a young earth and strangely there was no evidence of the cessation and restart of life 6,000 years ago which is what a literal reading of Genesis 1 requires. He reminds us that Genesis 1 is not teaching us science and our interpretation of it could be adjusted by further scientific discoveries. Walker was no fan of evolution but would be shunned by creationists today. Continue reading
The first two chapters of Genesis present an intriguing dilemma: two individual creation accounts with strikingly different features, which appear to contradict each other (Bosman 2004, p.43). A survey of three interpretative models – historical, polemical, and theological – will demonstrate the importance of contextualising Genesis. When returned to its original socio-historical setting, the creation narrative develops new meaning and a clearer purpose emerges. Continue reading
A fascinating Jewish perspective, reviewing the history of Jewish interpretation of the firmament. From the article:
The Torah describes God’s fashioning the firmament (רקיע) on the second day of creation. This piece of the universe, however, doesn’t actually exist—a problem obfuscated in my yeshiva education…Every pre-Copernican commentator in Judaism who wrote about the rakia knew exactly what it was. The Talmud, for instance, records varying opinions about the thickness of what is clearly a solid firmament; from the seven layer firmaments of Resh Lakish (b. Chagigah 12b), to the two firmaments of R Judah (ibid.), from the finger-width firmament of Rav Joshua ben R Nehemia (Gen. Rab. 4:5), to the “50 year journey” firmament of Rav Judah (j. Berachot 2c).
We have written a fairly lengthy article on the meaning of the expression “very good” in Genesis 1. Suffice it to say we believe the phrase means everything was really good. From the sea, to the trees, to the serpent and even humanity, the whole work of creation was a job well done. While the component parts may have been good, the work collectively was very much more so. There is no moral or superhuman overtones to the phrase in the context of Genesis 1 or in its many uses later in the Old Testament. Continue reading
This interesting page reviews Jewish readings of Genesis 1 and in this article by Dr. Rabbi Zev Farber focuses on the distinction between light on Day 1 and the Sun on Day 4 of creation. To quote an extract from the article: Continue reading
Although the text appears quite simple, our community’s conflicting views on Genesis 1 prove the shifting sands of Christadelphian interpretation cannot be relied on; we have never arrived at an interpretation with which we can all agree. Even the apparently simple description of the creation of man is sufficiently ambiguous that brother Roberts said it is unclear how it actually happened. Continue reading
While there is a fair amount of material on Genesis 1 on this blog, much of it is pointing out limitations in some readings rather than addressing the text as it is. There is some fantastic material (and not so great stuff as well) around.
Bro David Brown has an interesting and well reasoned series of articles on his blog here. COD maintains the literality of the serpent (along with the special creation of Adam and Eve), however despite some differences there is a lot of value in David’s well reasoned work.