In the Beginning

In these days of darkness, moral disintegration, and confusion, we need more than ever to remember who and what we are—that is, we need to remember what it means to be authentically human. We in the West are surrounded by voices shouting lies and half-truths, with the media leading the charge over the cliff and most people following them like unthinking lemmings. Fortunately, we are not bereft of a source of wisdom…

The Fathers of the Church and the Creation Stories

No one interested in the history of Biblical interpretation can ignore the role of the Fathers of the Church. It seems clear that many (though not all) of the Fathers of the Church interpreted the narrative of Genesis literally, as sequential history, and that accordingly most of them regarded the world—including the sun, moon, and stars—as no more than about 6000 years old. They also believed that the sun revolved around the…

The Creation Stories in their Cultural Context

In my last blog piece, I suggested that the first thing one must do before reading a book is to recognize from which library shelf it came—that is, its literary genre. Or, put another way, one must ask oneself how the original readers of an ancient text would have understood it. In the case of Holy Scripture one must also continue to mine the text for meanings not originally grasped by the…