Creation – Day One and Two
In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth. And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness [was] upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters.
Well, not exactly. Elohim created the world, which is the plural of god. Later, Jewish scholars decided that it’s only plural when referring to false gods,but it is singular when referring to Yahweh.” That’s not how grammar, or history, works. In most of Genesis, the word Elohim is translated a “god” and the proper name Yahweh is translated as “lord god.” Here’s a link to help sort out the names of god. The beginning occurred around 4100-3900 BCE, depending on who you trust to do the counting. The creation seemed to have gone unnoticed by cultures worldwide that had already developed agriculture and copper tools.
So, all we’ve got is this dripping wet…void, I guess. Now, Elohim needs to make something of it all, so he begins the process of creating the world we know. Day one, he makes light and dark, aka, night and day. Mind you, he makes stars later, so this is the beta version of daylight. Day two, this happens.
And God said, Let there be a firmament in the midst of the waters, and let it divide the waters from the waters. And God made the firmament, and divided the waters which [were] under the firmament from the waters which [were] above the firmament: and it was so. And God called the firmament Heaven. And the evening and the morning were the second day.
What? Firmament means “expanse,” so he made a space in all this water, which separated the water into “above” and “below.” Heaven, by the way, can either mean “sky” or “heaven” in the “god’s house” sense. So, somewhere there is an enormous amount of water that is separated out from the water on Earth.
Creation – Day Three to Six
Day three, we get the remaining water separated further to create dry land, and all the plants. Well, we get grass, fruit, and seed-bearing herbs. (This excludes, you may have noticed, tubers, fungi, and others.) Day four, we get stars, sun, and moon. Back then, the moon was a light source back then; today, all the stupid moon does is reflect the sun’s light. Day five, god gets busy and creates all the creatures that fly and live in water. Day six, god creates everything that lives on land, including man!
And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth. So God created man in his [own] image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them. And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth.
There we go again, a plural god making man and woman. He tells them to be fruitful and multiply…and replenish the earth? Well, the word used here actually means “to fill”, so it was an odd choice to use replenish here, but the job seems to be breeding either way. Chapter one ends and chapter two begins by saying god rested on the seventh day. The omnipotent god needed a day off to rest. Then…we get another creation story.
End of Chapter One
This chapter starts by saying Elohim rests on the seventh day, and that the creation was good. The the story radically changes.
These are the generations of the heavens and of the earth when they were created, in the day that the LORD God made the earth and the heavens, And every plant of the field before it was in the earth, and every herb of the field before it grew: for the LORD God had not caused it to rain upon the earth, and there was not a man to till the ground. But there went up a mist from the earth, and watered the whole face of the ground. And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul.
The first couple of sentences are confusing. It says This time, it says the Lord God (Yahweh) has created everything. It also seems to say the plants were in the earth, but haven’t grown yet because there was no rain and no man in place to till the ground. You know, because plants only grow if a man physically tills the ground and cares for it. The Yahweh creates man (again) and calls him Adam (which is he word for ‘man”) and plants a garden (Eden) for him to live in. In this garden, he plants the tree of life and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. (Spoilers! This is important later) He tells him to eat everything BUT the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.
He then lets Adam name all the animals, but he doesn’t find his soulmate (Dogs must come later). God makes Adam sleep, and steals a rib to make Eve. Notice, Elohim made male and female humans already.
In Jewish tradition, the creation in chapter one involves the creation of Adam and Lilith from the same dust. When she learned that she had to be subservient to Adam, she left (as she came from the same dust that Adam came from, she felt they should be equals). Lilith became a sexual demon who preyed on mankind, stealing babies (since she rejected her husband and cannot bear children of her own). The creation in chapter two is a second event, where Adam gives up a rib to create Eve. She has the title “woman” because she came out of the “man.” The actual word used means “wife” and for quite a few verses, she is referred to as wife. Adam waits until much later to name her Eve.
The Serpent Arrives
Now the serpent was more subtil than any beast of the field which the LORD God had made. And he said unto the woman, Yea, hath God said, Ye shall not eat of every tree of the garden? And the woman said unto the serpent, We may eat of the fruit of the trees of the garden: But of the fruit of the tree which [is] in the midst of the garden, God hath said, Ye shall not eat of it, neither shall ye touch it, lest ye die. And the serpent said unto the woman, Ye shall not surely die: For God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil. And when the woman saw that the tree [was] good for food, and that it [was] pleasant to the eyes, and a tree to be desired to make [one] wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat, and gave also unto her husband with her; and he did eat. And the eyes of them both were opened, and they knew that they [were] naked; and they sewed fig leaves together, and made themselves aprons.
We learn that snakes are the cleverest of all animals (as Jesus said, “… be ye therefore wise as serpents…”). So clever, in fact, that when it begins talking to Eve (I’m sorry, she was still “wife” at this point), she never blinks an eye. It is also worth noting the bible doesn’t say the Devil tempted Adam and Eve. It is very specific that it is merely a snake. Seriously. The connection to a serpent occurs once in Revelation, when Satan is called “that old serpent.” Still, that is not a reference to the serpent of Genesis, but a reference to a long Middle Eastern myth that the creator battles a great serpent. The book of Enoch says Gadreel was the fallen angel that tempted Eve. In fact, the belief in “the Devil” didn’t form until around the first century BCE, after Judaism had been exposed to other, dualistic religions. (link) It is simply a snake, which many ancient religions consider symbols of wisdom. That makes sense, as the serpent is trying to introduce knowledge to the human race. Let’s not dwell on the fact that Satan and the Devil are not the same. That’s another topic for another time. Here’s a link for now.
That woman takes the fruit and understands good from evil. Let this sink in. Humans did not know right and wrong until that moment. How would they understand disobeying god was wrong? They wouldn’t. God set a trap for the human race.
And the Lord God called unto Adam, and said unto him, Where art thou? And he said, I heard thy voice in the garden, and I was afraid, because I was naked; and I hid myself. And he said, Who told thee that thou wast naked? Hast thou eaten of the tree, whereof I commanded thee that thou shouldest not eat?
So, once again, the omnipotent, omnipresent god seems to not have a clue about what’s going on. He goes on to punish the snake by taking his legs, punish the woman by making childbirth hurt (it didn’t before?), and punishing man by making farming hard. Adam decides “old what’s her name” isn’t going to work anymore, and names her Eve. God kills an animal to make them clothing, which strikes me as odd. Is this indicative that plant based fibers aren’t good clothing, or is it foreshadowing of the shocking amount of killing that is coming? Then Adam and Eve get thrown out of the garden. Why?
And the Lord God said, Behold, the man is become as one of us, to know good and evil: and now, lest he put forth his hand, and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live for ever: Therefore the Lord God sent him forth from the garden of Eden, to till the ground from whence he was taken. So he drove out the man; and he placed at the east of the garden of Eden Cherubims, and a flaming sword which turned every way, to keep the way of the tree of life.
Man was forced from the Garden of Eden out of fear. Yahweh said man had become like them (plural), and must never eat of the Tree of Life (which would make them immortals also).
To summarize, in Genesis, there is more than one god, this divine group are neither omnipresent or omniscient, and they seem to have some measure of blood lust and fear their own creation, mankind. Yahweh is quickly written in to be the primary god, but not the only on.
Up next, here come the kids!