Rethinking Genesis is an assessment of the origins of the book of Genesis. Garrett looks at the various possible sources of information that Moses drew on in putting together his account of the origins of the earth and the appearance of the history of Israel. The documentary hypothesis has always been criticized from conservative theological circles. This has tended to be in the form of outright opposition to the concept and the insistence that Moses used no other source than inspiration by the Holy Spirit. The uniqueness of Garrett's approach is that he combines conservative theology with an investigation of the possible sources of information available to Moses.
“An evolutionary, unilinear approach to Israelite history.” (Page 13)
“The possibility of dividing the Pentateuchal texts on the basis of stylistic criteria.” (Page 13)
“Easy determination of the purposes and methods behind the documents and redactions.” (Pages 13–14)
“Genesis contains some duplicate stories and repetitions.” (Page 14)
“In short, the criterion of divine names, the historical and evidential starting point for the Documentary Hypothesis, is without foundation. It is based on misinterpretation, mistranslation, and lack of attention to extrabiblical sources.” (Page 19)
Provides not only the most convincing refutation of the documentary hypothesis now in print, but also suggests a convincing alternative analysis of how the Pentateuch came to be. The volume is a model of careful scholarly reasoning, written in an engaging manner with a minimum of technical jargon and a maximum of thoughtful argumentation. Here is a book that biblical scholars everywhere will be compelled to take account of.
—Douglas K. Stuart, Professor of Old Testament, Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary, South Hamilton, Massachusetts
Since its inception over a century ago, and throughout the following years, the Documentary Theory of Pentateuchal origins has never gone unchallenged. It is the strength of Dr Garrett's study of Genesis that he goes beyond (mere) criticism of this extraordinarily resilient theory to the development of a credible and extremely illuminating, indeed, compelling alternative - one that is thoroughly biblical, impeccably scholarly and true to the pervasive Mosaism of the Pentateuchal books. This is a book deserving a wide readership and no reader will put it down un-rewarded. Heartiest congratulations to Christian Focus on its publication.
—Alec Motyer, former editor of the Bible Speaks Today Old Testament Commentary Series
An original and stimulating discussion which provides a measured critique of the "assured results of higher criticism" but, from a conservative evangelical perspective, seeks to determine the sources that lie behind Genesis. Drawing especially upon insights from form criticism and structuralism the author offers a constructive analysis of possible literary origins.
—Stephen Dray, Minister, Ferndale Baptist Church, Southend-on-Sea, England
Duane A. Garrett brings to Southern Seminary many years of teaching, writing, research and pastoral experience. He has served on the faculty of Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary, Bethel Seminary, Canadian Southern Baptist Seminary, Mid-America Baptist Seminary and Korea Baptist Seminary. His books include Song of Songs in the Word Biblical Commentary; A Modern Grammar for Classical Hebrew; Angels and the New Spirituality; Authority and Interpretation; and Hosea and Joel in the New American Commentary. He also serves as the general editor for The Archaeology Study Bible from Zondervan Press.