Genesis 1-2.07

Genesis 1-2.07 - Reading Genesis in Its Ancient and...

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Reading Genesis in Its Ancient and Contemporary Contexts (08-02-05) 04:05 PDT WASHINGTON, (AP) -- President Bush said he believes schools should discuss "intelligent design" alongside evolution when teaching students about the creation of life.
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Creation
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“Before creation, there was only God. No one save God saw the origin of all things. It is plain, therefore, that the story we are reading is an artist’s conception of this truth about God’s relation to the world. Michelangelo was to paint it in the Sistine Chapel, Haydn was to set it to music. The author of Genesis wrote it in words.” Bruce Vawter
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The Creation Debate in Its Ancient Context [Note well: Creation accounts function as “cosmogonies” or charter documents and give clues to the way civilizations understand themselves.] The “P” account of creation was written down in sixth-century Babylon during exilic period in the midst of conflicting cosmogonies.
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Enuma Elish: The Babylonian Account The Enuma Elish is the best-known Babylonian creation account . It existed in various versions and copies, the oldest dating to at least 1700 B.C.E. According to this account, before heaven and earth were formed there were two vast bodies of water. The male freshwater ocean was called Apsu and the female saltwater ocean was called Tiamat . Through the fusion of their waters successive generations of gods came into being. As in the Genesis 1 story, water is the primeval element, but here it is identified with the gods, who have unmistakable gender. Younger gods were created through sexual union. These younger, noisy gods disturbed the tranquillity of Apsu, so Apsu devised a plan to dispose of them. The wisest younger god, Ea, found out about the plan and killed Apsu. To avenge her husband Tiamat decided to do away with the younger gods with the help of her henchman Kingu. When the younger gods heard about this, they found a champion in the god Marduk . He agreed to defend them only if they would make him king. After they tested his powers, they enthroned him. When finally they met on the field of battle, Tiamat opened her considerable mouth as if to swallow Marduk and plunge him into the immeasurable deeps. Marduk rallied by casting one of the winds into her body, expanding her like a balloon. He then took his bow and shot an arrow into her belly, splitting her in half. Marduk cut her in two like a clam, and out of her carcass he made the heavens. The "clamshell" of heaven became a barrier to keep the waters from escaping, a parallel to the Genesis notion of a barrier or firmament. Marduk also fixed the constellations in the heavens. They, along with the moon, established the course of day and night as well as the seasons. Then Marduk devised a plan to relieve the drudgery of the gods. They were tired
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This note was uploaded on 04/17/2008 for the course REL 1310 taught by Professor Holleyman during the Fall '08 term at Baylor.

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Genesis 1-2.07 - Reading Genesis in Its Ancient and...

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