- The 1st
Book of the Pentateuch
- Written by Moses
And God blessed Noah
and his sons, and said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply,
and replenish the earth. And the fear of you and the dread of
you shall be upon every beast of the earth, and upon every fowl
of the air, upon all that moveth upon the earth, and upon all
the fishes of the sea; into your hand are they delivered.
Every moving thing that
liveth shall be meat for you; even as the green herb have I given
you all things. But flesh with the life thereof, which is the
blood thereof, shall ye not eat. And surely your blood of your
lives will I require; at the hand of every beast will I require
it, and at the hand of man; at the hand of every man's brother
will I require the life of man.
Whoso sheddeth man's
blood, by man shall his blood be shed: for in the image of God
made he man. And you, be ye fruitful, and multiply; bring forth
abundantly in the earth, and multiply therein. And God spake
unto Noah, and to his sons with him, saying, And I, behold, I
establish my covenant with you, and with your seed after you;
And with every living
creature that is with you, of the fowl, of the cattle, and of
every beast of the earth with you; from all that go out of the
ark, to every beast of the earth. And I will establish my covenant
with you; neither shall all flesh be cut off any more by the
waters of a flood; neither shall there any more be a flood to
destroy the earth.
And God said, This is
the token of the covenant which I make between me and you and
every living creature that is with you, for perpetual generations:
I do set my bow in the cloud, and it shall be for a token of
a covenant between me and the earth. And it shall come to pass,
when I bring a cloud over the earth, that the bow shall be seen
in the cloud:
And I will remember
my covenant, which is between me and you and every living creature
of all flesh; and the waters shall no more become a flood to
destroy all flesh. And the bow shall be in the cloud; and I will
look upon it, that I may remember the everlasting covenant between
God and every living creature of all flesh that is upon the earth.
And God said unto Noah, This is the token of the covenant, which
I have established between me and all flesh that is upon the
- The name "Genesis"
comes from a Greek word meaning "beginning." This word
was the title of the book in the Septuagint, the ancient Greek
translation of the Old Testament. The Hebrew name for Genesis
was 'b rë shith', "in the beginning." The Hebrews
often identified the books of the Old Testament by the first
word of the text. In this way when a scroll was unrolled they
were able to tell immediately which book it contained.
Aside from Genesis, there are no other writings that inform
us of the events which predated Moses. The first part of the
book describes the key events in the early history of man. The
remainder of the book records the history of the patriarchs.
Genesis was written in a prescientific age and was not
meant to be a scientific document. Consequently, only divine
inspiration can account for the perfect accuracy of its technical
information. In Genesis, it is made clear that all things were
designed and created by God and continue to operate within the
boundaries of His purpose. Although the human race departed from
God's original plan, God has lovingly provided a way for men
to be reconciled to Him.
Though the Book of Genesis contains no express record
as to who wrote the book, there are no logical reasons for denying
that Moses is the author, not only of Genesis, but of all five
books of the Pentateuch. The unity of the Pentateuch is attested
to in various portions of the Old Testament, as well as in portions
of the New Testament.
- Even the opening phrase
of the Book of Exodus, "Now these are the names," provides
clear evidence to that unity. The Hebrew prefix that is translated
"now" is the common form of the conjunction in Hebrew
(most often translated "and" or "but") and
indicates that there was some other book which preceded the Book
of Exodus. Jesus refers to Moses as an author of Scripture in
Luke 16:31; 24:44; and John 5:46, 47. ln John 7:23, the New Testament
refers to circumcision as a part of the Law of Moses (see Gen.
17:12; Ex. 12:48; Lev. 12:3).
It has also been suggested that Moses made use of certain
documents and oral traditions to write the book. Certain terms
have been cited as proof of the previous authorship of certain
portions. For instance, the term 'tol dôth' (8435) generations,
is said to be used to identify the author or the possessor of
certain portions (Gen. 6:9, 11:27). The "looking over"
or "familiarity with" other writings is not unheard
of among the biblical writers, nor is it contrary to biblical
inspiration (see Luke 1:1 -4). However, it must be remembered
that the actual writing of the Book of Genesis was done by Moses,
under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit.
The Book of Genesis is an appropriate introduction to
the entire Bible. It provides answers for the universal questions
of the origin of all living things, the universe, sin, and evil
in the world. More than half of human history is covered in its
fifty chapters. However, the Book of Genesis is not merely the
introductory book of the Pentateuch, but rather the foundation
of it, of the whole Old Testament, yea of the whole of the Scriptures.
Without the Book of Genesis, what would be known of the creation
of the universe, the fall of man, the judgment of God, or the
promise of redemption?
- Since God is invisible,
man may know of Him only through His works, which are seen in
nature, revealed in Scripture, and accomplished in the life of
the believer. And how deficient would our knowledge of God be
without this book! Are not "his eternal power and Godhead"
displayed in His creation (Ps. 19:1; Rom. 1:20)?
Yet the creation, in all that it portrays of the divine
Creator, is not sufficient in its instruction to provide man
with the knowledge necessary to attain salvation. At this point
as well, however, the Book of Genesis lays the foundation of
all the Scripture.
- For the book is not
limited to the account of creation, but rather emphasizes the
fact that the world was founded by God, that man was created
in righteousness and true holiness, but that man fell by his
own disobedience, and therefore was cursed by God.
- Furthermore, the first
promise of a Redeemer, by whom the curse of death would be vanquished,
is found in this book (Gen. 3:15, 16). The remainder of the Book
of Genesis is in fact the first chapter of the history of redemption,
in which God chose the seed of Abraham to be the line of the
Messiah and the heirs of the promise (Gen. 12:1-3; Matt. 1:17;
Gal. 3:6 -9, 29). [Source for Introduction of chapter:
Hebrew Greek Key Study Bible KJV edited by Spiros Zodhiates,
Th.D. AMG Publishers, Chattanooga, TN 37422]