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.