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Genesis and Christian Theology
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Genesis and Christian Theology

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Eerdmans 2012

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Genesis and Christian Theology contributes significantly to the renewed convergence of biblical studies and systematic theology—two disciplines whose relational disconnect has adversely affected not only the scholarship but also the church as a whole. In this book, 21 noted scholars consider the fascinating ancient book of Genesis in dialogue with historical and contemporary theological reflection. The essays included offer new vistas on familiar texts, reawakening past debates and challenging modern clichés.

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Key Features

  • Considers the famous Sepphoris mosaic and its representation of Aaron from Leviticus 8–9
  • Examines Gregory of Nyssa’s belief that God the Trinity doesn’t require language for communication
  • Analyzes the theological sense of the Christian doctrine of “creation out of nothing,” as developed by the church fathers
  • Provides a comparison of Genesis and a “pagan” foundation story from a civilization’s prehistory
  • Outlines the contours that run between the concepts of community and society


  • Genesis and Salvation History
    • Manifest Diversity: The Presence of God in Genesis
    • Beginning with the Ending
    • The Akedah in Canonical and Artistic Perspective
    • Joseph in the Likeness of Adam: Narrative Echoes of the Fall
    • “Before Abraham Was, I Am”: The Book of Genesis and the Genesis of Christology
    • Genesis 2–3: A Case of Inner-Biblical Interpretation
  • Genesis and Divine-Human Relations
    • Gregory of Nyssa on Language, Naming God’s Creatures, and the Desire of the Discursive Animal
    • Image, Identity, and Embodiment: Augustine’s Interpretation of the Human Person in Genesis 1–2
    • Poetry and Theology in Milton’s Paradise Lost
    • Sex or Violence? Thinking Again with Genesis about Fall and Original Sin
  • Genesis and the Natural World
    • Interpreting the Story of Creation: A Case Study in the Dialogue between Theology and Science
    • Humans, Animals, and the Environment in Genesis 1–3
    • Reading Genesis in Borneo: Work, Guardianship, and Companion Animals in Genesis 2
    • Covenantal Ecology: The Inseparability of Covenant and Creation in the Book of Genesis
    • “And Without Thorn the Rose?” Augustine’s Interpretations of Genesis 3:18 and the Intellectual Tradition
    • Toward a Creational Perspective on Poverty: Genesis 1:26–28, Image of God, and Its Missiological Implications
  • Genesis and the People of God
    • Did God Choose the Patriarchs? Reading for Election in the Book of Genesis
    • Rebekah’s Twins: Augustine on Election in Genesis
    • Abraham and Aeneas: Genesis as Israel’s Foundation Story
    • Genesis and Human Society: The Learning and Teaching People of God
    • Food, Famine, and the Nations: A Canonical Approach to Genesis


Praise for the Print Edition

This rich and fresh collection of essays pivots on the daring conviction that historical-critical study and theological interpretation (informed by ongoing church tradition) can usefully engage each other in generative ways. The outcome, in various idioms, is a deep plunge into theological exploration that reaches in many contemporary directions, notably, faith and science, covenant and creation, food, poverty, work, and attentiveness to environment. Readers will inescapably be led in new directions of thought and interpretation by these provocative studies.

Walter Brueggemann, William Marcellus McPheeters Professor of Old Testament Emeritus, Columbia Theological Seminary

Product Details

  • Title: Genesis and Christian Theology
  • Editors: Nathan MacDonald, Mark W. Elliott, and Grant Macaskill
  • Publisher: Eerdmans
  • Publication Date: 2012
  • Pages: 365

About the Editors

Nathan MacDonald is reader in Hebrew and Old Testament at University of St. Andrews in Scotland and is coeditor of A Cloud of Witnesses: The Theology of Hebrews in its Ancient Contexts with Richard Bauckham.

Mark W. Elliott is senior lecturer in church history at the University of St. Andrews.

Grant Macaskill is lecturer in New Testament at the University of St. Andrews.

Sample Pages from the Print Edition

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