What special understanding do ancient Creation-Flood texts contribute to the literary critical problem of Genesis ? They generally involve one text isolated from its original historical context e.
Home Miscellaneous Genesis vs. However, although it is a little dated, J. McGarvey had written a published response to an article which addressed this very topic along with a synopsis of the Babylonian accounts that I believe some of you might enjoy reading.
Of course, this is all done to discredit the Bible historically which then also serves to discredit it religiously.
In this fashion, this pipedream is not in any way different from the nonsense surrounding the Epic of Gilgamesh. You must buy into the theory to make it all work. Or, rather we will let the words of John William McGarvey report — and then you can decide.
You may note that there is in fact some room for a question or two and perhaps that there also is no real point of comparison between the two records at all. I now take up what Professor Willett has to say through the Chicago daily paper about the relation between the Babylonian account of creation and that in the Book of Genesis.
After mentioning several nations of antiquity that had traditions respecting the origin of the world, and last in the list, the Babylonians, he says: Among the latter people there is found a narrative of creation so strikingly like that of Genesis that its relationship cannot be questioned.
Yet the differences are great, consisting for the most part in grotesque, polytheistic and immoral elements, which are entirely absent in the Genesis narrative.
This suggests the explanation of the problem. The narratives which first found their way into Hebrew life from the common Semitic stock had the same general form and features which we see in them today.
But the religious life of Israel demanded the purification of this material at the hands of the prophetic teachers, whose task it was to prepare the nation for its great vocation of a prophetic people and a spiritual teacher of the world.
No vehicle of instruction was as familiar and important as these narratives of creation. That this was done by the hypothetical J, who wrote about six or seven hundred years after Moses, and P, who wrote three or four centuries later.
To these two imaginary writers are expressly ascribed the first and second chapters of Genesis. These two writers had no revelation on the subject, and what they wrote is not to be taken as matter of fact. They had nothing to go by but the Babylonian narrative, and they did nothing with this except to subtract from it its base and polytheistic elements.
Whether there is any truth in this theory or not can be settled, I think, by any man who has common sense and will use it in a sensible way, by simply comparing the two accounts. Our readers, at least very many of them, have seen this Babylonian account, as the English version of it has appeared in many critical books and magazine articles, though probably few of them have read it on account of its tediousness and obscurity.
It is about as easy reading as that many lines of the Koran. I will not inflict the reader with a copy of it, but I will summarize its principal features, and any one who chooses to verify the accuracy of my summary can easily do so.
The story goes forward in chronological order, as follows: There is an abyss of waters called Tiamat, which existed before there was any being in heaven or any plant on the earth.
There were no gods as yet. The gods, with Merdach as leader, make war on their mother Tiamat. She arms herself with snakes whose bodies are filled with poison, raging vampires, flashes of lightning, the scorpion-man, the fish-man, the zodiacal ram, eleven monsters, etc. The gods, some of whom are afraid of Tiamat and her forces, place Merodach, also called Bel, in supreme command.
He arms himself with a club, a sword, a bow, and lightning. He carries a net in which to enclose Tiamat. He makes all the winds blow to confound her, mounts his chariot, fastens the reins to his side, holds the weapons in his hands, and rushes to the charge.
He seizes Tiamat by the waist, trying, I suppose, to hug her so tight that she could not breathe. He threw down her corpse, he stood upon it.The Two Creations in Genesis by David Bokovoy The Bible opens with two different creation stories. The accounts are similar in that they both describe the creation of animals, plants, and humans.
The author of Genesis 1, probably a Hebrew scribe living in Babylon during the Babylonian Exile in the 4th century BCE, was apparently creating a new version of the old creation myth that could conform with the strict monotheism which was taking hold of Judaism at the time.
Creation Stories The Egyptian, Mesopotamian, and ancient Hebrew cultures were all very different. The earliest known creation writings were dated from the third millennium B.C.1 Whether it is belief in one God or several, each culture represents one or more. Comparison of Genesis' first Creation Story with Enuma Elish, a Babylonian creation story The Babylonian creation story is called by its first two words " Enuma Elish.
" According to archaeologists, it was originally written circa BCE. The Hebrew creation story from the book of Genesis is one that most people know well. In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.
The earth was without form and void. In reviewing the differences and similarities, shrewd readers will note that that Babylonian/Sumerian creation parallels and contrasts tend to be congregated in Genesis 1 while Egyptian parallels and contrasts tend to be grouped in Genesis through the end of Chapter 3 which would serve to indicate that these are two seperate units intended.