The authors were inspired by God to use “us” and “our” even though at the time the authors didn’t know why. God would not let His Word be tainted by spill over beliefs in other gods and from pagan beliefs.
Very true. I just thought of something. Genesis was written at a later time (I don’t know if the church believes Moses wrote it). So, there might have been more communication with God at a later time before it was written. So maybe using “us” was already understood before writing it down. Genesis has 6 editions, as well. I’m probably going to get lost if I keep thinking, but yeah, it’s inspired by God and thus it was there for the Jews, kind of like the same thing when God said “… He will strike at your head, while you strike at his heel.” (Gen 3:15). It was thought of humans being enemies to snakes, but later theology saw it as Jesus Christ. So, I guess it’s all the same thing, all inspired by God and it was revealed.
“You study the Scriptures diligently because you think that in them you have eternal life. These are the very Scriptures that testify about me.” John 5:39
The “us” in Genesis is the Trinity speaking, in my opinion. There is an interesting aspect of the Genesis genealogy that may be hinting at the Trinity. In Genesis 5:7 Seth has a son Enos; in Genesis 5:18 - 24 Jared begot Henoch, who was taken by God. Finally in Genesis 4:17 Cain is said to have a son Henoch as well, and Cain names his city after him! These three names seem very similiar to each other. I wonder if it is being used as a veiled reference to the Trinity, for Henoch was taken by God, and there are three varieties of Henoch, Enos, Enoch depending on your transalation! :stretcher:
You can believe that all you want, but:
-You can’t explain why God would inspire such a thing. Can you?
-More importantly, you don’t have a basis in reality for making that claim. Do you? Why should we believe that “God would not let his Word be tainted”, other than your mere belief that He would not?
(Also, Jeremiah 8:8?)
I am quite aware that the bible is inspired by the Holy Spirit. But what exactly does that mean? Does it mean that the Holy Spirit whispered into the ears of the Scripture authors and they wrote the verses word for word? Kind of like the Angel Gabriel dictating the Koran to Mohammed…
The bible writers were inspired to write, the Church was inspired to develop a canon and assemble the books and each of us can be inspired when we take time to read.
I believe that like the Church, Scripture has both a divine and a human reality. Since, as I suggest, it is not completely divine, we need to be open to the fact that the human aspect had certain limitations. Those limitations could be in the form of a limited or incomplete understanding of human, scientific or theological matters.
It’s not important that every historical or scientific statement is in compliance with our present (more advanced) understanding. What is vital is the theological message that is so necessary for our salvation.
So the “we, us” may (and likely does) indicate an imperfect understanding of God’s own nature. Coming to know God is an ongoing process that will never be fully complete until we are with Him in heaven. The thousand of years that have passed since Genesis was penned, have allowed us to come into a deeper knowledge of God as He continues to reveal Himself to his people, especially through the world’s experience with Jesus of Nazareth.
In the Hebrew there is no “us”.
DRC 3:22. And he said: Behold Adam is become as one of us, knowing good and evil: now therefore lest perhaps he put forth his hand and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live forever.
Gen 3:22 ויאמרH559 יהוהH3068 אלהיםH430 הןH2005 האדםH120 היהH1961 כאחדH259 ממנוH4480 לדעתH3045 טובH2896 ורעH7451 ועתהH6258 פןH6435 ישׁלחH7971 ידוH3027 ולקחH3947 גםH1571 מעץH6086 החייםH2416 ואכלH398 וחיH2425 לעלם׃H5769
Literally: Say the Lord God, “Behold! Man become united part of knowing good evil at this time removal send away hand gather tree alive eat live concealed.”
The story of Noah is based on the ancient Mesopotamian tale of Gilgamesh, a story well know to the different cultures throughout the region. And then there’s the fragment about the Nihilum. If fact, there is much in Genesis that can trace its roots to pagan beliefs. It isn’t necessarily a bad thing.
Nicene Creed regarding the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit:
The Father - “…maker of heaven and earth, of all things visible and invisible…”
The Son - “…born of the Father before all ages… …through Him all things were made…”
The Holy Spirit - “…the giver of life, who proceeds from the Father and the Son… …who has spoken through the prophets…”
Regarding angels - aren’t there something like nine orders of angels and the Archangels are something like third from the bottom… I really think we underappreciate and/or underestimate the higher orders of angels and can’t possibly comprehend much about how they may or may not interact with God the Father.
Yeah, it’s a good point on how scripture is being inspired, as there are multiple theories and most were rejected by the Church.
I was reading an article from the NAB bible by Eugene H. Maly (I assume he’s a priest). There’s a theory that’s not accepted called ‘divine dictation’, which is where the Holy Spirit directs your writing to avoid any error. He writes, “The theory has been rejected by the Church for two good reasons: because it implies the notion of a God who does not respect the freedom of his creatures, and because it cannot account for the very obvious differences of the biblical writings - differences that can be adequately explained by the different backgrounds, styles, and purposes of the human authors.”
They also reject the theory “subsequent approbation” which once scriptures was completed God approved of its use.
Since we know the authors have used their own words (“like fire burning in my heart” Jer 20:9), we know they are in control of their writing. The more accepted theory is being inspired by God with the words of man using his talents and resources. Being that the case, man wrote “us”, which is inspired by God, yes, but in the words of man. We still know Christ said this, “You study the Scriptures diligently because you think that in them you have eternal life. These are the very Scriptures that testify about me.” John 5:39. So, although written by man while inspired by God, it still avoided error because it testified about him. It’s a great article and worth reading, titled “The Purpose of the Bible.”
I liked the two words “imperfect understanding” of the word “us”. Interesting how the author knew it was plural, but the author doesn’t try to explain it. Reminds me at RCIA, the teacher joked, “We know the Trinity exists, but we’re not going to try and explain it.” That’s humble - it’s very mysterious, but we still only have a human understanding of it, and all we need to know right now. Even now, some Christians still struggle with the Trinity concept, and I know of one church that totally disregarded the Trinity. In the same way though for those who don’t understand it, the author knew it’s still not singular, so perhaps the author wrote it in plural based on his imperfect understanding. And of course, God reveals the Trinity later on to give a better understanding.
Actually that is vice versa, the Mesopotamian account is based on an embellished story of something that actually happened. Noahs ark is not embellished. The key word is embellished. There are certain types of embellishment that make certain people look better than they actually were. The ark in Genesis does not have embellishment, because Noah was not a super hero, he was just humbly doing his worth. How long did it take to build the ark? Embellishment zero. How mighty was Noah? Embellishment zero.
Please if you are going to compare embellished stories against the real thing, do not make the embellished stories the origin, let the origin be the simple non-hero.
=philv;10999875]I fully believe in the Trinity, but I’m wondering what “us” really means. On first look, yeah, I would agree it’s the trinity that was understood later with the teachings of Christ. But as the New Jerome Commentary explains above, there’s more than one explanation on “us,” so I’m curious if anyone has any deeper insight on that. It could very well mean both explanations. Thanks!
From Haydocks Catholic Commentary:[in part]
Verse 26: “Ver. 26. Let us make man to our image. This image of God in man, is not in the body, but in the soul; which is a spiritual substance, endued with understanding and free-will. God speaketh here in the plural number, to insinuate the plurality of persons in the Deity. (Challoner)”
Clearly God does reference the Blessed Trinity here.
IMO it is FAR more amazing understanding just HOW man can and exclusively DOES emulate God.
Of the BILLIONS of Created things in God’s Universe ONLY planet earth can support [with evidence there of] the life forms found on earth including humanity.
On Planet earth with HUNDREDS of thousands of living things one one; ONLY MAN can recreate complex things a computer for example] AND ONLY man can choose to love or hate.
In order to do these things requires all of these:
a mind [not the brain]
a intellect [not speaking here of ones “IQ”]
and ONLY man has these gifts.
Each of these gifts like God Himself are SPIRITUAL THINGS
And this is HOW man alone can and does emulate our God.
Exactly! The Flood of Noah did not come from the Mesopotamian story, the Flood of Noah is about events that happened world wide so it only makes sense that someone else would tell their version of a world wide event, only they told it in their own embellished way. The fact that there exists another version of it only proves it was a true event and that it was world wide. If it’s a world wide event, then it will happen in other places and it’s only natural that other cultures would tell about the event from their point of view. The Flood of Noah is not any copy of anyone, it’s simply the truth told in God’s word in the correct way. God’s word is a true source and the the Mesopotamian account is a tabloid version of it.
God inspired them to write it that way because umm…it’s a little thing called the truth. So you’re saying I just want to believe the Bible is inspired by God? What religion are you again? Inspired by God means it’s untainted with pagan beliefs mixed in as the word of God. If paganism was mixed in to the Bible it would not be holy and sacred, that would be like Jesus having the sin of man mixed in Him. Unless you are claiming that too?
No it does not mean God whispered into their ear, but it does mean God lead them to write what they wrote and how they wrote it. Even if they did not fully understand the meaning behind the ideas that came into their head that inspired them to write what they wrote. They were compelled to write “us” and “we” for reasons they did not fully understand at the time. Simple as that.
No, the story of Noah is based on a true event that happened and because it was world wide, another culture decided to write their own version of the flood too. It’s no different than more than one news source covering a major event today. One source will tell the truth, another source like a tabloid will embellish the truth, but both are telling their version of a historical event.
And do you mean the Nephilim? The Nephilim did exist, you should read the Book of Enoch. The mythologies of other cultures are just embellised versions of the Nephilim that existed back then before the flood. Since they existed all over the world, other cultures will naturally have their own stories about the event. That’s part of the reason for the flood to begin with.
"The parallels between the stories of Enkidu/Shamhat and Adam/Eve have been long recognized by scholars. In both, a man is created from the soil by a god, and lives in a natural setting amongst the animals. He is introduced to a woman who tempts him. In both stories the man accepts food from the woman, covers his nakedness, and must leave his former realm, unable to return. The presence of a snake that steals a plant of immortality from the hero later in the epic is another point of similarity.
Andrew R. George submits that the flood story in Genesis 6–8 matches the Gilgamesh flood myth so closely, “few doubt” that it derives from a Mesopotamian account. What is particularly noticeable is the way the Genesis flood story follows the Gilgamesh flood tale “point by point and in the same order”, even when the story permits other alternatives."*
No serious scholar believes the scenario that you present above and I don’t believe that I have ever read a suggestion from Church authorities that confirm the conclusion that you have reached. Ancient biblical study is slightly more complicated than you suggest. The Church does not teach that the early stories of Genesis are literal in truth, which causes certain problems for your position.
That sounds like you grabbed it off wiki. Interesting thing about wiki is you only have to cite one opinion in order for it to be acceptable to wiki standards, one can then cite wiki without consulting other sources to sound knowledgeable.
I have read the Epic of Gilgamesh Tablet XI and it doesnt present the same as the Genesis account, it strays quite a bit from Genesis. Obviously the writer of the Epic of Gilgamesh, by word of mouth, mixed up some of the story (after all they were all descendants of Noah).
For instance the release of the dove and raven have been reversed (same order your serious scholar claims?). There is no rainbow covenant. The reason for the flood is different. The people on the ark are different. The only thing the same is the overview.
You are entirely off track with the “no serious scholar”, you probably just wont find them spouting on wiki with phrases like “few doubt”.
Which brings us to Abraham. Abraham is is Genesis is he fiction?
You would do well to do a bit of research before you expound your version of truth. What do they say, “a little bit of knowledge can be a dangerous thing”… I say this with all charity. Stop and read and you may learn something.
Gilgamesh was written long before Genesis. Genesis, in fact was likely written around the years surrounding the captivity by the Babylonians and Assyrians.
The epic of Gilgamesh was a story that tried to explain the nature of the gods and their interaction with man. While in captivity, Jews were familiar with other near eastern mythology.
The object of the flood story in Genesis is a re-origin of the myth. It attempts to use the basis of a widely known myth to communicate supernatural realities to God’s people.
There is also a seven day creation story that parallels to creation story found in the Bible. The focus is not on the historical reality, but rather certain theological truths. For example, many gods vs one God, man made in the image and likeness of God, God made them male and female, etc.
Does it ever occur to you, in reading this passage of scripture, that rather than God making man in His own image, man has made God in his image? The God of the Holy Bible fits the mold perfectly of the only supreme thing the early writers knew of. They had as the greatest beings they knew of, a bunch of fanatical, barbaric, egotistical, tyrants who thought nothing of murder, torture, genocide, etc. God as He appears in the Bible is all these things and even worse. They had no other model of greatness to use. There may have been some benign rulers, but they didn’t last long in those days. Except for the 10 Commandments, I’ve pretty much given up on the old testament as relating to accuracy and the truth. If it were truly inspired it would not require constant interpretation as it has for so many centuries, even to this day, to the OP for this subject in fact.
That is unverifiable speculation. The Epic of Gilgamesh was written on clay tablets. They are dated about 2000BC at the min.
Genesis was originally composed on clay tablets. The series of clay tablets was added to with another clay tablet as time progressed and another generation record could be etched. The tablets could be copied easy by imprinting soft clay.
By the time of Moses this method was being replaced with dried animal skins and ink as it was so much easier to produce, could fit more on it, and was portable.
So you are suggesting that the Jews in captivity duplicated an ancient method of composition, including introductions on clay tablets so they could then copy them to parchments and destroy the originals?
Dan Brown would be proud of that one.