A Skeptic Translates the Book of Genesis (“Begats” Included) October 15, 2015

A Skeptic Translates the Book of Genesis (“Begats” Included)

This is a guest post by Rachel Whetstone. Since letting go of her fear of God, Rachel enjoys tasting the fruit from the tree of knowledge and sharing it with the world. You can follow her projects on Facebook.

Studies show that most Christians don’t actually read their Holy Book very often. Atheists tend to be more familiar with the Bible which, for many, is the reason they’re atheists in the first place. It’s a book that is often boring, confusing, disturbing, and contradictory. Even dedicated scholars can’t agree on how it should be translated. Pastors like to pick their favorite verses for a sermon rather than confront the Bible as a whole.

Micah Edwards tackles those issues in his entertaining book Okay, So Look: A Humorous Retelling of the Book of Genesis (Annorlunda Books, 2015).

The book is broken down verse by verse, so you can follow along with your own Bible if you’d like. There’s no cherry-picking here. While most of us are tempted to skip the “begats,” Edwards trudges on through and manages to make them so worthwhile that I found myself laughing out loud.

Here are some of my favorite excerpts:

GENESIS 12:10 – 12:20

But then, disaster strikes: “the Lord inflicted serious diseases on Pharaoh and his household because of Abram’s wife Sarai.” Okay, I’m going to say what the Bible won’t. If you take someone into your palace, you’d better know whose palaces they’ve been in before, because otherwise you don’t know if those palaces were clean or not. And once you take someone into your palace, you’re inviting in everyone whose palace they’ve been in before, too. Sometimes the Lord works in mysterious ways, but in this particular case, I think the vector he used to inflict serious diseases upon Pharaoh is pretty clear.

GENESIS 17:1 – 17:27

God gets a little bit huffy and basically tells Abraham to quit mocking his deity before he makes him cut off more than just his foreskin. He says that the full covenant, land and all, will go to Abraham and Sarah’s son, whom they will call Isaac. That means “he laughs”—so in other words, since God is annoyed that Abraham laughed at him, he’s making the guy name his son “Snickers.” Very mature, God.

GENESIS 22:1 – 22:19

Abraham’s argued with God in the past with pretty decent results, but for whatever reason he decides to simply accept this one. The text isn’t specific about exactly how old Isaac is at this point, but he’s old enough to carry all of the wood for a burnt offering up a mountain on his back, so it’s a good bet that he’s at least an early teenager. This might help explain why Abraham didn’t take too much convincing to set the kid on fire; I imagine it’s a fairly common desire among parents of teenagers, really.

The book is far better than what you find in hotel rooms now. (Micah: I’m waiting for you to cover Exodus. Make it happen!)

The book is currently available on Amazon.

(Image via Shutterstock)

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