Christian Author Reveals Hidden Poetry and Symbolism in Genesis

A Christian author has discovered poetry throughout the Book of Genesis. He has outlined and explained the poetry and the underlying symbolism in his newly published debut book, Return to Genesis: What Ancient Poetry Reveals About Christ, the Church, and the Kingdom.

Most Old Testament scholars have classified most of Genesis (chapters 4-50) as historical narrative. They may have to rethink this because a new book shows that Genesis is also poetic. This applies not only to the creation account, but also to the stories of Adam and Eve, Cain, Noah, Abraham, Jacob, and Joseph. This poetry is outlined in the newly published book, Return to Genesis: What Ancient Poetry Reveals About Christ, the Church, and the Kingdom by Martin Pierce.

Since Genesis is predominantly historical, the poetry isn't as obvious as the kind that we see in books such as the Psalms and Proverbs. The poetry in Genesis typically extends over multiple chapters, and is rich in symbolism. As a result, most of it has gone unnoticed until now.

The trend in Christian scholarship has not been to look for symbols and metaphors, but whenever possible, to interpret the Bible literally. This is mostly due to a fear of subjectivity. Symbols and analogies defy precise definitions. Another fear is that the more we see metaphors and symbols in Bible stories, the more difficult it will become to defend those stories as actual history. It's simpler, and seemingly more objective to adopt a literalistic approach.

As a former literalist, Mr. Pierce is sensitive to these criticisms. He responded to them at length in Part 1 of Return to Genesis. He argues that we need to know symbols, metaphors, and types in order to recognize and interpret the Bible's abundant poetry. Unlike English language poems, Hebrew poetry emphasizes meaning (e.g., parallelisms) over form (e.g., rhyming syllables). Naturally, an interpreter's main objective should be to uncover the intended meaning behind every text.

Again, symbols can be highly subject to interpretation. Some people still wonder what the Beatles were really trying to communicate through their Abbey Road album cover. However, the Bible is unlike contemporary art or literature, which may or may not contain symbolic meanings. Return to Genesis lays out poems in Genesis which are so highly structured that they lend objectivity even to symbolic interpretations. For example, we find in Chapter 19 an impressive set of 25 consecutive parallels which compare or contrast Abraham and Sarah with Adam and Eve. When symbols are presented in this context, it eliminates considerable doubt about what the author had in mind.

The most significant poem that Mr. Pierce has discovered in Genesis would likely be what he calls "The Creation Cycles." This poem, which encompasses Genesis 1 and 2, consists of 32 elements. What's most impressive about it is that these elements are aligned in a matrix of two overlapping four-by-four structures. This presents multiple parallel relationships.

Return to Genesis (ISBN 978-0-9850315-0-3) can be purchased at Amazon, or you can receive $7 off the book through the end of July 2012 by applying discount code 67KBN6HH at Createspace (https://www.createspace.com/3868591).

Martin Pierce is the founder of Christian Era Publishing (http://www.christianerapublishing.com). On June 18th, 2012, he he formally declared war on literalism, sectarianism, and divorce. These topics are also covered in Return to Genesis.

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Contact Details

Company Name: Christian Era Publishing
Issued By: Martin Pierce
Phone: 307-274-9127
Address: 2400 Boston St., Suite 102 Baltimore, Maryland
City: .
State: .
Zip: 21224
Country: United States
Website: Visit the website

Keywords : Christian Author, Reveals Hidden Poetry, Symbolism Genesis,

by Martin Pierce (few years ago!)

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