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Friday, May 20, 2011

Genesis, part 2

Today I finished the book of Genesis.
First I would like to note that I find irony in the idea that I am using the hard work someone (whom I assume is a believer in the religion) who recorded the reading of the Old Testament as a tool to learn more about the core of their belief and yet the more I learn the more I am deciding that my opinion of the faith has been correct all along.

My assessment of the latter half of of the Book of Genesis is that it is, essentially more of the same material found in the first half. There are a few additional things that are noteworthy, such as the story of Joseph. Joseph's story can be interpreted two ways: one is that the God of Abraham was following Joseph with interest and making him succeed wherever he went. The other interpretation of this story is that hard work and intelligence, when applied together, can make someone successful despite terrible setbacks and betrayal. I expect that either interpretation could be considered inspirational to a reader/listener.

My assessment of the complete Book of Genesis is that there are a great many inconsistencies in the overall story of the book. I find that there is also a lot of repetition in the phrasing and information in the book and a couple instances where there seem to be contradiction in whom was involved. The writing is really quite bad and I expect that if other narratives that have been wildly successful books where re-formatted to be told the same way that this book is formatted that EVERY publisher would reject them and very few readers would ever read them (this spawns the question of "how many copies of The Bible are actually READ and how many just sit around gathering dust?").
I also found that the stories highlight the greedy and self-centered nature of people, even those chosen by God. The very nature of the stories lead me to question God's character in these stories. Lastly, that man was created such that he had lifespans of HUNDREDS of years and then God spoke and forced man to have lifespans of only DECADES means that God is fallible: either God made a mistake in the initial creation of mankind OR there was an oversight made in that creation. Either way a correction means a mistake was made. The idea of a correction being made means that the idea of God being infallible is incorrect.

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