Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Do Genesis Chapter 1 and 2 Contradict?

I must confess that I did more than one double take when I encountered Bart Ehrman’s first problems with the Hebrew Old Testament. He not only complains that Genesis 1 and Genesis 2 use different names for God but that the two chapters are very difficult to reconcile.[1] This is of course hardly true.

The notion of different names for God must surely have Ehrman’s language students rolling their eyes in utter amazement and utter disbelief. As Hebrew students will immediately recognize the author of Genesis uses Elohim to identify God in both chapter one and chapter two. The only notable difference is that in chapter two the author adds Lord or Yahweh to Elohim. It is hardly a stretch to suppose that a single author would underscore the power of God in creation in chapter one and then emphasize that God in creation is likewise God in relationship with respect to humankind in chapter two.

Furthermore, I wonder why the consternation over topical recapitulation. Ehrman himself frequently brings up a topic in general terms and then restates the self same topic in different order with added detail and perspective and, frankly, I’m surprise one of his university Hebrew students hasn’t taken the time to unpack the problem for the professor.

One final point, I’m certainly surprised that in added detail and perspective, Ehrman wonders how light could have been created on the first day when the sun, moon, and stars were not created till the fourth day.[2] It seems to me that even a full blown fundamentalist on the left would recognize that electromagnetic radiation inherit in the big bang produces more than a little light and, certainly, Ehrman believes in the big bang.

These are the kinds of objections that professor Ehrman, and other professors around the country, are using to dissuade their students that the Bible could be the infallible repository for redemptive revelation. There are good answers to the objections he raises over and over ad nauseum and ad infinitum. There not unusual objections, they’ve been raised before, and we provide those at the ministry of the Christian Research Institute and Bible Answer Man radio broadcast.


Boris said...

No dice Hank. Most people think Adam was created on the sixth day of God’s creation but they haven’t read the text carefully. In Gen 2:4-8 it says: These are the generations of the heavens and the earth when they were created. In the day that the LORD made the earth and heavens, when no plant of the field was yet in the earth and no herb of the field had yet sprung up—for the LORD God had not caused it to rain upon the earth, and there was no one to till the ground; but a stream would rise from the earth, and water the whole face of the ground—then the LORD God formed man from the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and the man became a living being. And the LORD God planted a garden in Eden, in the east; and there he put the man whom he had formed.

The Bible says that Adam was created on the day that God made the earth and heavens and before there was any vegetation on the ground. The Bible says that was the third day: Then God said, “Let the earth put forth vegetation: plants yielding seed, and fruit trees of every kind on earth that bear fruit with seed in it.” And it was so. The earth brought forth vegetation: plants yielding seed of every kind bearing fruit with seed in it. And God saw that it was good. And there was evening and there was morning, the third day (Gen 1:11-13). It is clearly impossible that Adam is one of those two people created together on day six of God’s Creation.

Anyone of you creationists want to try to refute my little essay here? How about you Hank? Do you have the guts to ever debate someone who you disagree with? I didn't think so. You are a chicken-hearted liar Hank and you make me sick.

Ben said...

Props to you Hank.... for engaging well the errors Ehrman propagates
and for responding appropriately to the attitude betrayed in comment-above.

Praying for CRI.

Boris said...

Ben if Hank had either a shred of intellectual integrity, a case against Ehrman or any guts he'd invite Bart Ehrman on his show to debate him. He could debate the phony faith movement people too. I doubt he could even hold his own against nutballs like Joel Olsteen. Hank is a fraud.

Boris said...

If as Hanegraaf argues, the contradiction is not there, this also means a large number of academics have also made precisely the same error. many academics who are also Christians, concede the presence of the contradiction. The only difference here is that academics who undertake objective research and study whereas the Christian apologist is disinterested in anything factual and accurate.

Jay said...