Monday, 15 August 2011

Two Contradictory Creation Accounts in Genesis? Think again!

Christ Pantocrator mosaic from Daphni, Greece, ca. 1080-1100. Image courtesy of Wikipedia. Jesus did not see discrepancies in Genesis.

Joel Kontinen

Old myths don’t die off easily. A glaring case is that of the two “contradictory” creation accounts, one in Genesis chapter 1 and the other in chapter 2.

A few years ago, New Scientist magazine used this argument. More recently, Austin Cline at re-discovered the same faulty approach.

The idea of contradictions stems from a lack of knowledge. The Bible often first gives an overview and then presents the details. This can be seen throughout Scripture. For instance, Genesis 1-11 describes mankind in general, whereas from chapter 12 onwards, the author follows the history of one nation – Abraham and his descendants.

In Genesis 1, the focus is on the entire creation, whereas in chapter 2, the emphasis is on the creation of man. Genesis 2 gives more details about what happened at the time God created Adam and Eve. It describes the environment God prepared for the first humans.

Actually, when Jesus taught about marriage and divorce in Mark 10:6-7, He quoted from both chapters, first from Gen. 1:27 and then from Gen. 2:24 in saying, “But at the beginning of creation God ‘made them male and female.’ ‘For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh.’ So they are no longer two, but one flesh.”(NIV).

Jesus did not see any discrepancies in the Genesis creation accounts and neither should we.


Cline, Austin. 2011. Contradiction: When Did God Create Animals?