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Out of the garden: Examining the true origins of Genesis

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  1. Introduction.
  2. In the beginning.
    1. The story of creation.
    2. The purpose of this research.
  3. Common views.
  4. Creation defined.
  5. Literature review.
  6. New perspectives.
  7. Literal meaning.
  8. Importance of religious study.
  9. Existence before creation.
  10. Relating the culture.
  11. Connecting the story.
  12. Hope in ruins.
  13. Conclusion.

?And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul.? Genesis 2:7 (Holy Bible, King James Version). Ever since that first breathe, man has been questioning the ways of the Lord. Laws, teachings, and even the existence of God Himself have been questioned since the beginning. There are numerous opinions on what is thought to be truth, whether it is the creationist who takes each and every word of the Bible for its literal meaning, the followers who believe these words as teachings and not in a literal sense, or the people who deny the Word having any meaning at all. One of the biggest ?hot topics? when it comes to questioning the Word of the Lord is the story of Creation, the story of how God came to create the heavens, earth, and finally man. As mentioned before, creationists believe that the book of Genesis is a complete and accurate account of how God created all things. They believe the story is factual in a literal sense and take every word as coming directly from God. However, many scholars believe that much of Genesis is taken from other creation tales from other cultures. Although it is believed that Genesis borrows, the book is still created to act as an allegory, a way of governing the way that followers of God are to behave.

[...] During the time period of Genesis there were some that wanted to speak up and reach the masses. What better way than through a scripture? The only problem is making it a story, and not an exact account of what is going on during the time. Existence Before Creation Knowing about the time period is one of the biggest factors in the story of creation. Most people believe that it was written after the time of the Babylonian captivity of the Jews. [...]

[...] However, are the similarities between the creation stories the one way the time period has affected the story of Genesis? It is easy to think this if one doesn't look deeper than just the surface of the story. The story does actually echo the history of the Babylonians and Jews. Comparing the two goes as follows: The four main characters of the creation story are Adam, Eve, The Serpent, and God. Adam represents the Jews, or distinctly King Zedekiah. Eve's role is the most vague and can be either the allies of Jerusalem or the Jews themselves. [...]

[...] Literature Review Most of the research concerning Genesis can be placed in to certain categories. Many of the works seem to go along with each other and seem to share similar ideas. The majority of the research deals with new ideas about the book, going through the story and attempting to explain a new way of thinking about it. Next there are those that, while adding a few minor new ideas, focus more on the literal aspects of Genesis. There are authors that deal mainly with the time that the book was written and life during this period or history, and finally there are those that deal with the importance of studying religion and finding new ideas. [...]

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