Essay on The Holy Bible - Genesis, Chapter One

analytical Essay
2002 words
2002 words

Genesis - Chapter One as an Executive Summary

“In the beginning…” Genesis 1:1

Acknowledging a beginning in the first sentence of any text is in itself indicative of the nature of the text as a whole. It is an acknowledgement of a creation. It is an admission that what is has not always existed and that a higher power is at work. Genesis begins with this phrase as a reminder of the existence of God; it emphasizes the fact that man is not alone. Dually, the phrase also is indicative of the nature of the Book of Genesis, and as the first book of the Bible it sets the frame for the entire text. “In the beginning…” illustrates the importance of the themes introduced in Chapter One—they form the structural basis of Genesis and are consistently emphasized throughout the book. The Book of Genesis begins with the Creation account that offers a set of detailed instructions as to how humans are to live and view their lives. Genesis Chapter One is an introduction of every theme that is to be addressed in depth throughout the book and, although mythological in its narrative style, it constructs the main point of Genesis while the remaining forty-nine chapters supplement and elaborate upon the first account of the Creation.

The overall account of the Creation in Chapter One is notable for its order, especially its ordering according to spatial differentiation and different levels of detail. It begins with God organizing the universe by the separation of the heaven from the earth, the light from the dark, the sea from dry land. After all of the major divisions are completed, God begins to organize within the new spaces. He deals first with the earth and then with the sky. The whole earth is made to bring forth plants, then the heavenl...

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... of what will occur in the remainder of Genesis. Not only does it provide an account of a beginning through creation, but it also offers a summary of the beginning of humanity in the full maturation of its blessing. Human beings are separated from beasts through this blessing because humans are the only creation that plays an active role in their own creation. It is not until the blessing is delivered and realized that human beings are fully formed, and they themselves must play an active role in its actualization. An understanding of the blessing is an understanding of what it is to be a human. The first creation account is not only a summary of the rest of the book, but a summation of how humanity can be achieved.


1 The Holy Bible, Authorized (King James) Version.

2 I am indebted to Mr. Rob Geis for this point given in his lecture on 11 May 2004.

In this essay, the author

  • Explains that acknowledging a beginning in the first sentence of any text is indicative of the nature of that text. genesis begins with the creation account that offers detailed instructions on how humans are to live and view their lives.
  • Analyzes how god organizes the universe by separation of heaven from earth, light from dark, sea from dry land, and then begins to organize within the new spaces. the hierarchy of creation extends from large to small and from general to specific
  • Analyzes how the order of the creation and the manner in which god proceeds gives the reader clues as to the relationship between the creator and creation in genesis.
  • Analyzes how genesis one is striking as a piece of poetic literature, but its specific sections correspond directly to later stories in genesis.
  • Analyzes how the pronoun change in genesis chapter one foreshadows the naming of eve in chapter two.
  • Explains that male and female are incomplete as individuals, suggesting neither should rule over the other and that neither can be self-sufficient. the relationship allows each to achieve a greater understanding of the creator and hence the universe.
  • Analyzes how the relationship between the image of human beings and the dominion of the earth implies that god makes humankind a caretaker of earth.
  • Explains that god rests after creating humans, possibly because they are the creation with the most promise to be close to god. the blessing of human beings is the last act of god in the creation.
  • Analyzes how the discussion of the blessing of humankind takes up four verses (1:28-31) and almost one fifth of space devoted to chapter one. this unequal proportion makes sense when genesis is viewed as a whole.
  • Explains that the blessing occurs after the human beings are initially formed. humanity is the only creation given god-like qualities of dominion and naming of the earth and its creatures.
  • Analyzes how chapter one is a prophecy of what will occur in the remainder of genesis.
  • Indebted mr. rob geis for his lecture on 11 may 2004.
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