Chapter 2 – Journey through Genesis

Genesis Chapter Two

Day Seven: God rested.

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1. What significance lies in God’s rest on the seventh day?
God’s work was finished, it was complete, and it was good. God was not tired; He set the seventh day apart and made it holy. He created an example for us. We need to take a day off once a week to rest and focus on God.

2. How does the account in Genesis chapter two differ stylistically from Genesis chapter one?
Chapter two is much more specific and detailed. This does not mean that a different author wrote chapter one and chapter two. Just as you can write a summary and then a specific account, or switch between writing prose and poetry, so can Moses switch from writing a summary to writing with detail.

3. Genesis chapter one says vegetation was created on day three. Genesis 2:5 says, “… no shrub of the field had yet appeared on the earth, and no plant of the field had yet sprung up, for the Lord God had not sent rain on the earth, and there was no man to work the ground…” Does this create a conflict between chapters one and two?
No. Chapter one tells us that God created vegetation to fill the earth on day three. Chapter two tells us that man had not started cultivating the fields yet. Genesis 2:5 specifically mentions the fields.

4. How does the creation of man differ from the creation of animals?
Many people point out that the Bible says God breathed life into Adam at his creation, but this was not mentioned when God created the animals. However, Genesis 7:22 says animals also have the “breath of life,” so this is not a true distinction.
Many people have pointed out that God “created” the animals, but he “formed” man out of the dust of the earth. Yet, Genesis 2:19 says that animals were also “formed out of the ground.” So again, there is no distinction between man and animals concerning how they were created or formed.
One true distinction is that God gave man responsibility and authority over all of creation. The main distinction, however, is that God made man in His image.

5. What do we know about the image of God before The Fall based on verse 17?
Christians do not believe that the physical appearance of humans changed after The Fall. However, before The Fall, man’s will conformed to the will of God; they were in close communion. This is something we unfortunately no longer have. We also see that even before The Fall, being made in the image of God did not mean that God’s knowledge was passed on, since Adam and Eve did not have knowledge of good and evil until after The Fall. Unfortunately, today, we are well-acquainted with evil.

6. Explain how something can be “not good” in verse 18, despite “everything” being “very good.” (Genesis 2:18 – “The Lord God said, ‘It is not good for man to be alone. I will make a helper suitable for him.”)
God was not yet done creating. There was an incompleteness. “Good” here does not refer to evil or to moral goodness, but to incompleteness.
This line of thought does bring up the questions: How could a perfect creation fall? Where did Satan come from? If God created Satan, why was Satan evil? God did create heaven and the angels, but He did not create evil. He did allow free will. Satan and his fallen angels chose to fall. Man chose to listen to Satan rather than God. Evil was created through these decisions, not God’s.

7. Is there any significance to man being created before woman? What does “a helper fit for him” mean?
Just as Christ is the head of men, and His relationship with His Church is like a marriage, so is the man the head of the family. Men, therefore, have the responsibility of being a spiritual leader. Woman, as a helper, has a complimentary role. This does not mean women have less value. There is a difference in role, not a difference in value. Women also share with men domination over creatures.

8. Did Adam name all the animals on the planet in one day?
Genesis says Adam only named the beasts of the field and the birds of the air. God brought the animals to Adam just as He would later bring them to Noah. Adam may have only named general species rather than all the sub-species. It is possible that Adam named them all on the sixth day.

9. Why is Eve being created out of Adam important?
This shows that Eve was also created in the image of God. It also shows that all of mankind came from Adam; the Bible often refers to Jesus as the “New Adam” since the redemption of all mankind comes from Christ.

10. How is marriage defined in verse 24? (“For this reason, a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and they will become one flesh.”)
The original Hebrew says “man” and “woman.” There are no exceptions listed here for a homosexual marriage. Marriage was instituted by God to be between a man and a woman, a life-long intimate union established between two complimentary persons given the command to go forth and multiply and fill the earth.

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Note: My husband, DH, is teaching a weekly Bible study on the book of Genesis during his vicarage (internship). These are my notes from his classes. Questions, comments, and respectful debate are welcome.

DH has a B.A. in religious studies and biblical languages. 
I have a B.A. in English, history, and Lutheran education.

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