This introductory course offers an overview of Genesis—the beginning of the beginning—focusing on the biblical narrative with its various twist and turns. We invite you to join Prof. N.T. Wright as he explores the early family history of God’s people that gives meaning and shape to the story of Israel. Rather than offering textual criticism or a look at various sources and strands of Old Testament theology, this course concentrates on the book as we have it. The lectures will trace the narrative about God, God’s Creation, and his people, and will also be useful for those who are interested how the New Testament draws from the story Genesis is telling. Along the way, you will learn why people like Abraham and Sarah, Jacob, and Joseph are not just characters to imitate as moral examples but are themselves deeply flawed and, like us, in need of God’s rescue.
By the conclusion, you will have learned how the people of Israel understood how their own story was being foreshadowed and why it matters. This course will encourage you to discover new energy and meaning from what happened from, and in, the beginning.