Summary: Intro to and theme of Genesis chapter 1. (PowerPoint slides to accompany this talk are available on request – email:

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Learning about the book:

• The Name

• The Key

• The Author

• The Language

Learning about God:

• God is…

• Personal.

• Powerful.

• Uncreated.

• Creative.

• Orderly.

• Plural.

• Singular.

• Good.

• Loving.

• Living.

• Like us.

• Unlike us.

• Distinct.



• On February 15th, 1970;

• Astronaut Edgar Mitchell was on board the Apollo 14 moon mission,

• He would soon be joining an exclusive club;

• He would become one of the twelve people who have walked on the Moon.

• (in fact he was the 6th man to walk on the moon0.

• While on the moon Mitchell deposited a microfilm packet on the moon;

• In that packet was a complete Bible (Revised Standard Version).

• The packet also contained one verse of the Bible in 16 different languages;

• The verse was Genesis chapter 1 verse 1.

• “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth”.

• TRANSITION: “In the beginning…”

• Now no one knows for certain when that beginning was:

• But remember, the Old Testament is far more interested in the FACT of creation,

• Than the time of creation.


(1). The Name.

• The Hebrew title of Genesis is (bray-SHEATH) Bereshith,

• Which, means “In the beginning.”

• In ancient times a book was almost always named after its first few words;

• ill: True today of our hymns and choruses.

• i.e. “When I survey the wondrous cross”

• i.e. “Oh for a thousand tongues to sing”

• i.e. “In Christ alone”

• i.e. Although some modern songs have broken that pattern;

• And are often known more by the title of the chorus;

• i.e. “10,000 reasons” by Matt Redman.

But in ancient times a book was almost always named after its first few words;

• Now when the Hebrew Old Testament was translated into the Greek language;

• The Septuagint - About 250 years before the time of Christ.

• It was given a new name; ‘Genesis’;

• Which means “Origin or source, generation or beginning”.

• That name ‘Genesis’ (beginnings);

• Carried over into the English Bible.

• Today nearly all Bible versions use the names for Old Testament Bible books;

• Coined from the Septuagint (Greek translation of the Hebrew Old Testament).


• Now ‘Genesis’ is a great name:

• Genesis is often called the 'seedbed' of the Bible

• Because in this book are the origins, the beginnings of everything:

• The origin of the universe

• The origin of the sun, moon, stars.

• The origin of planet earth.

• The origin plants, birds, fish, animals, humans.

• The origin of sex, marriage and family life.

• The origin of civilisation, of government, culture, arts and science.

• The origin of sin and death and murder and war.

• The origin of sacrifice.

• It is the origin of most if not all biblical truth;

• All biblical truths are here in the book of Genesis, in essence.

• Quote: “Genesis is the seed bed of the Bible”.

(2). The Key.

• Genesis is the key that unlocks the rest of the Bible:

• Without the key of Genesis the rest of the Bible would not make sense.

• 3 examples:


• If the Bible started with Exodus, none of us would probably read it;

• After all who is interested in a bunch of Jewish slaves in Egypt?

• We have enough history of our own country to catch up on and enjoy,

• Never mind reading about a bunch of nobodies in a far away place.

• But the great thing about Genesis is this:

• We are reading about ourselves, this is our history,

• Contained in Genesis chapters 1-10 is the history of the human race & much more!

• And because it is our history:

• It unlocks the answers to life’s greatest questions.


• Why am I here?

• What is the point and purpose of living?

• Why do we die?

• Is there a God and can we know him!


• If we did not have Genesis the rest of the Old Testament would not make sense:

• The Old Testament is built on the book of Genesis,

• It is full of references to people like Adam, Noah, Abraham, Jacob (Israel) etc.

• i.e. The book of Job and Psalms is littered with references to Genesis,

• Without Genesis these books would be hollow and not make sense!


• Genesis is more quoted in the New Testament than in the Old Testament.

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