The Genesis Origins Stories and Their Sources: Slide Show 3 from Denis Lamoureux

Today we continue Denis Lamoureux’s series of brief slide shows on his popular book I Love Jesus & I Accept Evolution. In the previous two slide shows, Lamoureux covered chapters 1 and 2 and chapter 3. In chapter 4 of his book, Lamoureux covers the biblical accounts of origins.

But before launching into that, Lamoureux wants to set up that discussion by talking about something he does not address in his book: the ancient sources behind these accounts, which Lamoureux considers part of a divinely “ordained and sustained ancient literary process.”

Today’s slide show is here, and along with it Lamoureux has provided 4 handouts that lay out these sources more clearly in the creation and flood accounts of Genesis (here, here, here, and here).

Lamoureux is associate professor of science and religion at St. Joseph’s College in the University of Alberta. He holds three earned doctoral degrees—dentistry, theology, and biology–which uniquely qualifies him to speak to the issue of human origins and Christian faith. He gets the science, he gets the hermeneutics, and he articulates both clearly for non-specialists (full bio here).

I Love Jesus & I Accept Evolution is a great introduction to his view of origins called “evolutionary creation.” For those of you who are beyond the beginner’s stage, you can read his much thicker book Evolutionary Creation: A Christian Approach to Evolution.

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  • Calminian

    What I’d like to know is why do certain theologians believe Genesis was written during ANE cultural times? It would seem Genesis predates these cultures in which we’re trying to force fit it. There’s certainly indications within the text of Genesis and the Torah that the hebrews already had their history recorded prior to Moses being born. We also know from archeological finds that writing existed long before Moses and even before Abraham. Yet there’s a constant effort to force Genesis (particularly chapters 1-11) into ANE ancient cosmologies—solid domes, geocentrism, etc.

    I think these guys may be guilty of they very error they’re trying to correct—imposing a culture onto the text, instead of letting the Bible express its own cultural aspects.

    I think Lamoureux perhaps struggles with what many other christians struggle with today, and that’s unbelief. I don’t doubt he loves Jesus, he just doesn’t trust the same revelation Jesus trusted in. He’s missing the blessing of trusting the whole Bible.

    That’s my take anyway after looking over his and Paul Seely’s theses. I personally used to believe in alternative theories about Genesis, going from theory to theory. Finally I just gave in and trusted Genesis as written, and what a blessing! You guys don’t know what you’re missing. The world does make sense when you trust God and reason from His knowledge base rather than man’s.

  • Calminian

    Actually there’s a 3rd view you may not be familiar with, and that’s the ‘tablet theory.’ Henry Morris touched in it in his Genesis commentary, and many creationists have expounded further. If you google the term you should come across a lot of hits.

    In brief, the text of Genesis shows evidence of multiple authors, but not in the sense of JEDP. Many creationists believe that Moses compiled Genesis from preexisting documents rather than receiving the account via direct revelation, which would really be odd for a narrative like that. Moses directly admitted that the Israelites knew their history prior to him writing/compiling Genesis.

    Deut. 32:7 “Remember the days of old, Consider the years of many generations. Ask your father, and he will show you; Your elders, and they will tell you:

    Given what we know about the history of writing today, it makes perfect sense that the components of Genesis were passed down from Generation to Generation perhaps even starting with Adam. Moses did not receive the narrative direct from God, but rather pieced it together under God’s inspiration. This fits much better with how we generally understand inspiration to work.

    This in essence would erase all non-concordist arguments, as it would imply that instead of Genesis borrowing from a particular culture, that rather these cultures are corrupted ideas based in misinterpretations of our true history.