It’s late and my mother-in-love has my mind going crazy over a question she asked me in a text message hours ago: “Okay, Bible scholar who wrote the Book of Genesis?”
I confidently sent her a text back stating that it was Moses. Roughly five minutes later, I sent a text saying that his authorship was debatable because he was dead well after the writing. I went from knowing the Word, to not knowing the Word in a matter of five minutes. It was a perfect example of the importance of 2 Timothy 3:16-17 for all Believers.
16 All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: 17 That the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works.
Timothy had some things specifically written in his second Book for those of us called to teach (like me!) but the aforementioned Scripture is for all of us. For moments such as this, mind you; and for many other reasons. I’m writing a paper about it now that I hope to expound upon through these last few months as an undergrad, so we’ll dive into that topic later. For now, I owe a solid explanation. It’s my duty!
Not one to back down from any questions presented to me when it comes to Christianity and the Bible, I’m digging through my small library of reference texts so that I can confidently state that my first thought was correct. And, lucky for you (and her, since she’s subscribed to my blog, lol), you’ll witness the fruit of this midnight labor and possibly learn something new!
Q. Who wrote Genesis?
A. The short, absolute answer is God. We know this to be true because the Bible is inspired by God (2 Tim. 3:16-17; 2 Peter 1:20-21).
The tip of the more-detailed response-iceberg, however, is that it was Mosaic authorship based upon ancient Jewish and Christian teaching. Genesis was written by God’s servant, Moses, some time between the Exodus (roughly 1445 B.C.) and Moses’ death some forty years later (MacDonald).
The Book of Genesis is one of the first five books of the Bible known as “the Pentateuch,” a Greek word for “five-roll.” Since the Bible was written on scrolls (rolled paper), the name was befitting. In the Jewish community, these series of books are referred to as the Torah; and some scholars and communities call the five books the Books of Moses.
There are those who challenge the interpretation that Moses was responsible for the composition of Genesis, but there is decent supporting evidence that he did. And to say that he “wrote” Genesis, or any other book for that matter, is not an implication that he was living and present for each event. He was inspired by other accounts and Hebrew texts during his time. The greatest inspiration was that of God’s.
So, there you have it (mom)…I’m ready to go deeper on the topic when you are!
Source: MacDonald, William. “Introduction to the Pentateuch” and “Genesis.” Believer’s Bible Commentary. Nashville, Tennessee: Thomas Nelson, 1995. 23-29. Print.