252: Understanding Genesis One (Part 1)
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There are many different ways to interpret and understand the book of Genesis, especially chapter one. In this episode, Kenny gives some history about how Christians have viewed Genesis 1 and he also challenges the false narrative of uniformity that often is asserted by many modern Evangelical Christians.
Kenny outlines the two primary ways of understanding and interpreting Genesis 1 (and similar styles of Biblical literature): the concordist view and the non-concordist view.
The concordist interpretations assert that God made the Earth and everything in the natural world using the sequence of events described in Genesis 1. Some proponents of the concordist views take the pieces of Genesis 1 as being literal and others take the pieces of Genesis 1 as being metaphoric, but in either form of concordism, the proponents claim that Genesis 1 is a historical narrative of the sequence of events of all created things.
With the non-concordist interpretations of Genesis 1, the proponents assert that Genesis 1 is teaching us about God’s sovereignty over creation and His preeminence over the created things, but that Genesis 1 was not written as a precise historical narrative therefore it ought not be interpreted in that manner. Concordism states that the point wasn’t to teach us how God did created everything or when He created everything, but instead the point of Genesis 1 was simply to point to the fact that God Himself did it, demonstrating His superiority over the creation and dismisses the notion that created things deserve any worship whatsoever, therefore God ought to be glorified for His wonderful works.
Kenneth E. Ortiz (M.Div.) is a professor and recruiter at Bethlehem College and a pastor at Cities Church. He has 15+ years of vocational ministry experience. He’s also a podcaster, author, and Ph.D. student. Kenneth lives in Bloomington, MN with his wife Malaina, they have one daughter.