Sunday, July 29, 2012

The book of Genesis - Two different Accounts on Creation of Man

Jacob: I wonder why there are two different accounts of creation in the book of Genesis? Genesis 1 and Genesis 2 especially the account on creation of man.


Jacob the book of Genesis uses a combination of two distinct Style (a) Jahwistic Style and (b) the Priestly Style to convey two different messages in one same doctrine.

Yahwistic Style uses the sacred name of Yahweh (Lord) for God. Its style is concrete, colorful and uses anthropomorhphism (or an expression which introduces God as acting after human fashion. eg. God is said ‘to walk’ in paradise). This style is said to be of Judean origin. While Priestly Style it is quite dry and stereotyped as compare to Yahwistic.

In Genesis Chapter 1 the following characteristics may be observed: the word ‘God’ is throughout. This account is from the priestly style. The author wants to explain the origin of all things with man as the most important creature.

Genesis Chapter 2 is Jahwistic Style; here the creator is address not by a simple word God but ‘Lord God’. Anthropomorphism is visibly seen, the author presented God as Potter and Ruler (Lord).

Formation of Man

Genesis 1:26-30 God said: Let us make man in our image; according to our likeness and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the heavens, over the cattle, over all the wild beast and over every creeping thing that creep over the earth.

The priestly writer presented God as pausing thinking, Let us make man which was quite different when he created other creatures by just uttering the creative word in a casual way. Man is made in the image, according to the likeness of God. These words indicate the dignity and mission of man. Since man is the image and likeness of God, he is called to be his (God) representative, in administration of creation. It also means that he (man) received a number of qualities and talents to exercise his mission to fulfill his task on earth. In short, the account on creation of man in Genesis 1 conveys that man is a dignified being and implies a state of friendship with God.

Genesis 2:7 The Lord God fashioned man of dust from the ground and breathed into his nostrils a breath of life, and human became a living being.

Here, the creator (God) is pictured as a potter. He shaped the dust into a human form; then breathed into the lifeless figure a breath of life and the figure became man. The author uses the image of the potter to express the religious thought of the absolute sovereignty of God and the total dependence of Man to him. Fashioned man of dust refers to the nature that perishes without the nourishment coming from God.

These two have the same doctrine:

 (a)  God made all things.
      (b)  God is all powerful.
      (c)  God is good and the source of all things.

Chapter 1 man is the image and likeness of God and Chapter 2 has been livened by the divine breath of God - the breath of life.

Man is a dignified but dependent being.  



  1. It is a good observation, the stiles used by Moses in writing the first five books of the bible. However, and most important, when one goes entirely to the whole account of Creation there is no contradiction in those writings. My point is this: since VCII in 1962-65, it has been an avalanche of critics regarding the Creation account for one simple fact, to please science in demand. To prove my point, watch the recent movie “Cosmic Origins” made by Father Spitzer SJ, PhD, in which he tries to reconcile the big bang with the Genesis account. In doing that he ,(the father), must reject entirely the total account of Creation, because the words are not there to make merge the heretic scientific view, and the traditional believe in One Essence Three persons, creator of everything that we see including us. Keep in mind that there is “no middle term.” either you accept the traditional view of the Church or you are on your own with science. God bless you all

    1. hope that they will realize how wrong the Vatican council II.

  2. I believe that God created more people than Adam and Eve. Adam and Eve did exist; however, there were others. This concept appears in the Priestly Account of creation in Genesis 1. I believe that God chose Adam and Eve to represent the human race. When they sinned, it passed to all mankind accept to one: Jesus. Jesus was born of the Virgin Mary and was sinless since he was both God and man. He was the Second Adam since he died on the cross for us. Through the Second Adam we gain salvation if we accept Him. Abraham is considered the ancestor of all those who accept the Lord. We become the true Hebrews when we accept Christ as Savior. This can be seen in Romans 11 and the olive tree where Gentiles become the new Jews through Jesus. In the book of Genesis, I believe Cain found his wife because other groups of human beings already existed.

    Charles E. Miller, BA, MAR


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