Talk:Book of Genesis

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Article fails to note specific points[edit]

The article fails to explain specific points given from chapters due to the fact that the parts this is split into are way to large. If the parts are made smaller it would be greatly appreciated. Logawinner (talk) 20:31, 17 June 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Two Pages Don't Jive[edit]

Know that Wiki isn't a scholarly site and we merely recount the views of others, but this page and the page of [[Josiah|Biblical King Josiah] do not match as to the origins of the Pentateuch and specifically the book of Genesis. On this page in the Origins section it states: "but more recent thinking is that the Yahwist is from either just before or during the Babylonian exile of the 6th century BC, and the Priestly final edition was made late in the Exilic period or soon after." However, on the Josiah page it states in the Religeous reforms section: "While Hilkiah was clearing the treasure room of the Temple he discovered a scroll described as "the book of the Law" or as "the book of the law of Yahweh by the hand of Moses".

Regardless of what portion of the Bible was found, with the reference to the "Book of the Law", this period was around 623/622 (18th year of Josiah's reign). So "late in the Exilic period" (circa 520 BC) as this page states for the Yahwist writing and a recounting the reign during circa 622 BC as the Josiah page states are off by app 100 yrs. It might be a simple matter of subjugating the test that I copy to show this as a fringe viewpoint, but either way Wikipedia should probably agree with itself. Ckruschke (talk) 14:42, 18 July 2019 (UTC)CkruschkeReply[reply]

Ckruschke - the commonest theory of the document found in the Temple is that it was a version of the law-code in Deuteronomy - the central spine of the modern Book of Deuteronomy, to which a few additions were later made to fit it into the Torah. I think the article Book of Deuteronomy explains, in its section on the composition-history of that book. There's also a pretty widely held suspicion that he law code wasn't found at that time, but was actually written then and passed off as an old code from the hand of Moses in order to justify Josiah's reform program - but at this point in time, who could possibly know. Have a look at Documentary hypothesis. though I'm not sure what's in that. Better maybe to look up Ska's book on the Pentateuch - it should be in the bibliography of that article.
Hi - I'm not saying I'm disagree with either sections so although I may be "interested" in your theories, they are irrelevant to the question. I'm saying that the Josiah page and this page don't agree and they should since the stated sections deal with the same subject matter. Ckruschke (talk) 18:04, 7 August 2019 (UTC)CkruschkeReply[reply]
Ckruschke, I know that response was a bit long winded, but here's the crux of it: the part of the Josiah page you're referring to is not about the book of Genesis. It is about the law code section of Deuteronomy. Genesis and Deuteronomy are two different books, and there's no reason to draw the conclusion that just because the law code that ended up being part of Deuteromy existed at such-and-such date, that that means Genesis also did. 2600:1702:4960:1DE0:D43F:9051:2D0:8EC1 (talk) 08:59, 14 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Majority view[edit]

By "majority view" Wikipedia means WP:MAINSTREAM WP:SCHOLARSHIP, not popular opinion. Speaking of popular opinion, the vast majority of Christians aren't fundamentalists, nor biblical inerrantists. The accusation of non-biblical scholarship is addressed at WP:NOBIGOTS. Tgeorgescu (talk) 20:39, 10 December 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Vaxorian, I suggest that you read the above, it concerns your tendentious editing by claiming that you restore neutrality to the article. You are not restoring neutrality, you're ruining it. And no, WP:NPOV does not mean giving equal validity to WP:CHOPSY and true believers. Tgeorgescu (talk) 22:53, 1 January 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Tgeorgescu Neutrality by definition means not taking a side, according to the Oxford dictionary Neutrality is "the state of not supporting either side in a disagreement, competition or war," and providing the opinion of both sides doesn't give validity, but rather leaves it to the reader to chose validity. You cannot make up your own definitions for Neutrality to fit your opinion, if you claim that secularism is given precedence over those that participate in the religion on religious articles, you are showing a lack of neutrality. Secular scholars are not all that should be represented, regardless of your personal "highbrowdness" or opinion. Showing only one side, and accurate information being removed due to it bringing neutrality is one of the reasons no reputable Universities permit Wikipedia for citations. Also for the fact that biased people on both ends of the spectrum (Biased toward religion via only showing the religious side, and biased towards secularism via only showing the secular side) can freely edit and remove accurate information from those truly bringing neutrality to an article by bringing a representation of both opinions from the scholars, and clarifying the difference between the two. Vaxorian (talk) 23:05, 1 January 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
@Vaxorian: We do take a side, the aggregate POV of WP:Reliable sources, see WP:NOTNEUTRAL and WP:FIXBIAS. You arguments seem nothing new. We are used to POV-pushers who claim they are restoring neutrality. Tgeorgescu (talk) 23:08, 1 January 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Just call it NPOV 2014 style... " Til Eulenspiegel /talk/ 00:19, 1 February 2014 (UTC)

Quoted by Tgeorgescu (talk) 23:18, 1 January 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
@Vaxorian: Here it is not done to change your posts after those have been replied to. Tgeorgescu (talk) 23:22, 1 January 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I attempted to reply to your comment, but upon publishing my reply, it did not show up, all I was stating is that Neutrality is by definition, NOT taking a side. I provided evidence, and my comment was not added. So rather than dealing with settings, I changed my original comment by adding the oxford dictionary definition of Neutrality. I was not changing the topic or any information, but rather providing a source, which I assumed you appreciated. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Vaxorian (talkcontribs) 23:26, 1 January 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
@Vaxorian: I say just take time to read WP:NOTNEUTRAL, WP:FIXBIAS, WP:ABIAS and WP:NOBIGOTS. Your conception of neutrality isn't ours (meaning: it does not belong to the Wikipedia community). Tgeorgescu (talk) 00:05, 2 January 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • @Vaxorian: Your edit here pretty much says that only scholars who favor Mosaic authorship are Jews and Christians, suggesting that anyone who doesn't hold to that are not Jews or Christians. That is taking a side. As for whether or not Christians must believe in Mosaic authorship, as a Christian I have to tell you that I wasn't baptized in the name of Moses nor Mosaic authorship, and the majority of pastors and Sunday school teachers I've met (in the fundamentalist-filled Bible belt, no less) either figured the Documentary hypothesis was either proven or at least as plausible as the Mosaic authorship (if not more so). Pull the plank out of your own eye before you go accusing others of not being neutral. Ian.thomson (talk) 01:04, 2 January 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Yup, his/her understanding of encyclopedic neutrality is not shared by the Wikipedia community and actively pushing it through editing Wikipedia articles is not done. Vaxorian is entitled to his/her own view, and may try to state it at Wikipedia talk:Neutral point of view (even though such attempt would be futile per WP:SNOW), but editing articles according to his/her own take on neutrality is not appreciated. Tgeorgescu (talk) 02:51, 2 January 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Suggestions for editing[edit]

3.1 Title and textual witnesses. Next, I would like to insert the following items.

About the formation and editing of Genesis in the Hebrew Bible
・・・・I omitted it.

Tokinokawa (talk) 15:35, 28 August 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Hi - Tokinokawa - whether you agree with it or not, this textual "genesis" of the book is already covered at length in the Origins section. If you feel that your sources trump the existing material, I would suggest that you instead refer your edits to the specific, existing text and state what you would like to see changed. Yours - Ckruschke (talk) 19:01, 28 August 2020 (UTC)CkruschkeReply[reply]
reply  I thought that there wasn't enough duplication in this section to show changes.

Because the "Origin" part comes from the description of the entire five books. From the point of view of Genesis, I think the following is true: ``Yahwist is from either just before or during the Babylonian exile of the 6th century BC, and the Priestly final edition was made late in the Exilic period or soon after." I thought the text of the editorial suggestion might have led to this article. Tokinokawa (talk) 02:07, 29 August 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Moved to the text.Tokinokawa (talk) 02:10, 10 September 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Hi - Tokinokawa - I'm not sure you understood the request. You replied to my comment and then pasted in a whole bunch of text without first including it here for comment. It was reverted as essentially "original research" because your sole reference is the Bible - which implies that all the ideas are yours - this isn't how Wikipedia works. So rather than go off on your own again, I would suggest you try and garner consensus on your proposed insertion - AND - supply actual references for your insertion. Ckruschke (talk) 18:47, 11 September 2020 (UTC)CkruschkeReply[reply]
Thank you for your suggestions.Tokinokawa (talk) 23:13, 14 September 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Two versions?[edit]

How come it says "There are two distinct versions of God's creation of the world in Genesis" then proceeds to only give one version? GA-RT-22 (talk) 03:08, 22 July 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]

@GA-RT-22: Yes, I see your point. Both are actually presented in that paragraph, but it is almost completely obscure:

There are two distinct versions of God's creation of the world in Genesis. God creates the world in six days and consecrates the seventh as a day of rest (which would then be known as Sabbath in Jewish culture). God creates the first humans, Adam and Eve, and all the animals in the Garden of Eden but instructs them not to eat the fruit of the tree of knowledge of good and evil. They promise not to, but a talking serpent, portrayed as a deceptive creature or trickster, convinces Eve to eat the fruit against God's wishes, and she convinces Adam, whereupon God throws them out and curses both of them — Adam was cursed with getting what he needs only by sweat and work, and Eve to giving birth in pain. This is interpreted by Christians as the fall of humanity. Eve bears two sons, Cain and Abel. Cain works in the garden, and Abel works with meat; they both offer offerings to God one day, and Cain kills Abel after God liked Abel's offering more than Cain's. God then curses Cain. Eve bears another son, Seth, to take Abel's place.

This is:

There are two distinct versions of God's creation of the world in Genesis. (1) God creates the world in six days and consecrates the seventh as a day of rest... (2) God creates the first humans, Adam and Eve,...

The first is given as a single relatively short sentence; the second as a much longer set of several sentences. So, technically, it does give both versions. But to outside observers such as you and me it is most opaque, especially given the massive imbalance in size of the two accounts.

I also observe that it poorly represents the claimed supporting reference. The reference (Joel Baden) says "Two creation-stories of Genesis 1 and 2" which is far clearer than our article's "There are two distinct versions of God's creation of the world in Genesis". Baden clearly and succinctly states the "chapter 1 and chapter 2" division. He also uses the term "creation-stories", which is much more precise than the article's "there are two distinct versions of God's creation of the world".

Further, the article's "...creation of the world" is a poor representation. Gen.1 is of "the heavens and earth", working towards humankind-in-general and the rest-day. By contrast, Gen.2 is about Adam and Eve and things around them; for this, in particular, the article's current language "of the world" is poor. Neither narrative really matches what we today would call "the world", so our article's framing and implicit emphasising of "the world" is suboptimal. And the progression towards the fruit, Cain and Abel, Seth, etc., doesn't really belong in a "creation of the world" paragraph.

My suggestion is that we replace at least the opening of this paragraph with something similar to the opening paragraph of Genesis creation narrative:

The Genesis creation narrative is the creation myth[a] of both Judaism and Christianity.[1] The narrative is made up of two stories, roughly equivalent to the first two chapters of the Book of Genesis. In the first, Elohim (the Hebrew generic word for God) creates the heavens and the Earth in six days, then rests on, blesses and sanctifies the seventh (i.e. the Biblical Sabbath). In the second story, God, now referred to by the personal name Yahweh, creates Adam, the first man, from dust and places him in the Garden of Eden, where he is given dominion over the animals. Eve, the first woman, is created from Adam as his companion.

That article's opening paragraph has been carefully refined over years both for accuracy and clarity. It would, to my mind, make a far better start to this paragraph than the current one.

I propose fixing the problem you identify, making a change of this nature later this week, unless there are serious objections supported by alternative proposals.

Feline Hymnic (talk) 11:15, 14 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]

That seems much better to me. GA-RT-22 (talk) 13:17, 14 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Feline Hymnic I suggest just using Baden, as quoted above, "two creation-stories of chapters 1 and 2", without further detail. Incidentally. when Genesis 1:1 says "heavens and earth" this is a figure of speech standing for everything, the entire world, not just the heavens and the earth.Achar Sva (talk) 22:31, 19 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
@Achar Sva: Yes, I see your point about keeping it quite short. So I have split the paragraph into two: the first for the creation accounts; the second for the subsequent "tree; serpent; Cain and Abel" etc., leaving the second, which was not really the topic of our discussion here, almost as it was (except for adding a "citation needed" template). For the first of the paragraphs (two creation stories), I have reduced it somewhat, and also ensured a wikilink to "Genesis creation narrative". I hope that is OK, or at least a reasonable step in the right direction.
@GA-RT-22:: How does that seem to you?
Feline Hymnic (talk) 20:18, 22 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Seems fine to me. My only objection really was to "two distinct versions", which makes it sound like there is only one story, but two versions of it. For example if we had one story where God makes Adam and Eve first and finishes up 30 days later with the heavens and the earth, and another story where the heavens and earth are first and it only takes seven days, that would be two distinct versions. We don't have that, we have more like two chapters of the same story. GA-RT-22 (talk) 20:28, 22 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I've now got "two different..." rather than "two distinct...". I'm not too bothered which word (or similar word) to use. But what this tries to do is to preserve the idea of the text in the Baden reference, which seems to reflect the majority scholarship view that there is some form of different authorship of the two accounts and some manifestation of the Documentary hypothesis. (The details of the DH are both extensive and constantly debated, but there seems to be scholarly consensus of Gen.1&2 reflecting two different source documents/strands/traditions later being edited together.) So I'm trying to preserve Baden's (mainstream) explanation. It also introduces a wikilink to Genesis creation narrative for those who want to dive deeper into the Gen.1&2 details, and so that those details don't overwhelm this paragraph. If we're both reasonably OK with it, +/- details, let's pause to see what others have to say. Feline Hymnic (talk) 20:53, 22 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Fine by me. Just a note on the "two distinct sources" - they really are distinct, not just different. In Genesis 1 God creates the world in six days and then rests, he creates mankind last (both man and woman together, while in Genesis 2 creation takes just one day, the order in which living things are created is different, and man (only one of them) is created before woman (only one). This is what Baden is pointing out. Achar Sva (talk) 23:18, 23 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]


Isn't it "Bereshith"? From the In the beginning (phrase) article, it apparantly is "Bereshith". The leading section on the Book of Genesis article has that "Bereshit". Qwertyxp2000 (talk | contribs) 05:25, 6 April 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

There seems to be some sort of a contradiction between the two articles. Qwertyxp2000 (talk | contribs) 05:35, 6 April 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
That's a variation in the transliteration. See bereshit.Editor2020 (talk) 02:50, 8 April 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
@Editor2020: Interesting. Should the two articles have consistency in word variants between each other? I'm not sure if the inconsistent use of "bereshit" versus "bereshith" in respective leading sections are necessary. Qwertyxp2000 (talk | contribs) 08:31, 8 April 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
You might add it parenthetically. Editor2020 (talk) 15:41, 8 April 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Evidence that Genesis should be taken literally[edit]

Dr. Steven Boyd specializes in Ancient Hebrew. His study of the Bible proves that one can determine if a passage is narrative (factual) or poetic by the dominance of the preterite verb form. If it is used overwhelmingly, the passage is narrative (factual). If usage is similar to other verb forms, the passage is poetic, and therefore not to be taken literally. Poetic passages are songs, prayers, blessings, proverbs, and prophets. All other passages are to be taken literally including the creation and the flood. [1] 2601:249:C000:E7D0:0:0:0:4980 (talk) 13:10, 16 April 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Why should we care about what Boyd states about Jewish mythology? Nothing in Genesis has any factual base. Dimadick (talk) 15:41, 16 April 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]


  1. ^ Dr. Don DeYoung. Thousands...not Billions. Master Books 2005

Moses as the author[edit]

Reading Genesis indicates that the author was of Hebraic heritage but had an extensive education in the tradition of Ancient Egypt. The description of the Garden of Eden pinpoints the location exactly if one follows the clues with Ancient Egypt in mind and the comment about a location where "the gold is good" shows knowledge of commerce at the far north of the world although the writer was in the south of the known world. Given that Moses is also accredited with writing Exodus, we might mention the use of the number 10 as in the 10 plagues and the 10 commandments. Egypt was the only civilization to use Base 10. All of Mesopotamia including Persia and Israel used Base 60. Another reason to consider Moses as the author of Genesis is the use of Books of Moses as authoritarian in numerous verses of various books in the library called the Holy Bible. 2601:249:C000:E7D0:0:0:0:4980 (talk) 13:20, 16 April 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

"Given that Moses is also accredited with writing Exodus" Moses is a fictional character and the Genesis dates to the 5th century BCE at the earliest. Dimadick (talk) 15:43, 16 April 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Moses is a fictional character
Surely you have verifiable confirmation for this claim, correct? (talk) 02:08, 2 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Since Moses is dated traditionally ca.1400 BCE., we have him writing, in Hebrew, Books several centuries before that language and its distinctive script is attested. Cripes. Well, the world of magical thinking can perform miracles as well.Nishidani (talk) 15:48, 2 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]