The Biblical Texts on Their Own Terms Versus the Bible on Its Terms: Genesis 1 and 2 as a Case Study

Biblical scholars often talk about the necessity of reading and acknowledging the texts of the Bible on their own terms. This gets repeatedly voiced by the scholarly community because in the large majority of cases the Bible’s texts are not read on their own terms, but on the terms of their readers—that is through the assumptions and beliefs that readers bring to this collection of ancient literature, even prior to readingRead More

Brief Interview with Wipf & Stock about my Genesis 1 and the Creationism Debate

Modern readers often assume that Genesis 1 depicts the creation of the earth and sky as we know it. Yet in an appeal for textual honesty, Steven DiMattei shows that such beliefs are more representative of modern views about this ancient text than the actual claims and beliefs of its author. Through a culturally-contextualized and objective reading of the texts of Genesis 1 and 2, this study not only introduces readersRead More

Genesis 1 and the Creationism Debate

“DiMattei’s book is a refreshing call both for biblical literacy and for intellectual honesty in dealing with the Bible.” —John J. Collins, Holmes Professor of Old Testament Criticism and Interpretation, Yale Divinity School. “In an important contribution to the discussion between mainstream biblical studies and creation ‘science,’ DiMattei does a wonderful job of explicating the first two chapters of Genesis.  He shows convincingly that although Creationists claim to read this storyRead More

A Visual Illustration of the Creation as Depicted in Genesis 1:6-14

I apologize for my absence. It’s been some time since my last post. My manuscript for Genesis 1 and the Creationism Debate is now complete and has been submitted, so I hope to turn my attention back to this site. UPDATE: Book is now finished and on sale at publishers website. For those interested, my book attempts to present an unbiased and culturally-contextualized reading of Genesis 1—the primary aim being toRead More

Offer of Publication: Genesis 1 and the Creationism Debate

I am glad to officially announce to my readers that my Genesis 1 and the Creationism Debate: Being Honest to the Text, Its Author, and His Beliefs—Not Ours about Them has been accepted for publication by Wipf & Stock, a small academic/trade publisher. It should be available Fall/Winter 2015. I will certainly keep you updated here. The primary aim of this book is to present readers with an accurate, unbiased, andRead More

Genesis 2:18-20—Man/Animals from the Ground, Woman from Man

In radically contradictory fashion to the creation of man (and woman) in the first creation account (Gen 1:24-27), when all is said and done in the second creation account, the substance from which man is made and that which he essentially becomes are shockingly no different than what is said about every other animal in this creation narrative. And god Yahweh molded (yatsar) the man (ha ’adam), clay from the groundRead More

Genesis 2:6-7 — Adam from Adamah: Yahweh Molds an Earthling!

In Genesis 2:5 we saw that the author of this creation story could not have Yahweh create the earth’s vegetation until the two initial conditions necessary for their existence and growth were first established—a water source and a man. Thus the dry, barren earth that we were presented with in verse 5—one that was unable to support produce and vegetation—is immediately transformed in the following verses with the appearance of aRead More

Genesis 2:5 — Man and Rain: Prerequisites to the Creation of Plants

UPDATE: Get the full book! Now available The differences so far illustrated in just the opening verse of the second creation account (Gen 2:4b) become even more dramatic as we move through the narrative. Genesis 2:5-7, for example, evidence a dramatic shift in emphasis, thematic material, message, vocabulary, and style. By way of introduction it might be said that the perspective adopted in these opening verses and indeed throughout this entire creationRead More

Genesis 2:4b — “In the day that god Yahweh made earth and skies”

There are several differences that are immediately noticeable in the opening verse (Gen 2:4b) of this second creation account. A literal translation would run: “In the day that god Yahweh made earth and skies…” We immediately notice that the creator deity is now specified by name, Yahweh. This feature is unique to both this creation account and the textual tradition to which it belongs, unceremoniously named the Yahwist. This source (J)Read More

Genesis 2:4b-25 in Its Historical and Literary Context

OK, now let’s start looking at Genesis 2. Here are my introductory remarks. From the opening verses of the second creation account, or if my reader prefers right at Genesis 2:4b, we notice stark differences in the text’s tone, style, vocabulary, message, presentation, and thematic and theological emphases and even beliefs. These will be brought out in the forthcoming textual analysis. These differences should not be ignored or disingenuously interpreted awayRead More