Saturday, October 17, 2015

The Self-Harmony of the Bible - 2 (Part Two)

Was Man Made in God’s Image or Did He Acquire it?
            The Skeptic points to Genesis 1:27 (NWT), which says: “And God went on to create the man in his image, in God’s image he created him,” then he turns his attention to Genesis 3:22 (NWT), which says: “Jehovah God then said: “Here the man has become like one of us in knowing good and bad.” He proceeds to congratulate himself because of his cunning wisdom in showing that the Bible doesn’t even know how Man “got” God’s image. To the discerning eye, however, this is a non-issue, and why?
            Because an issue requires substance, but there is none here. The image of God that men have is not that they are like God in every respect, but that they are like God in some respects. For it is clear that we are not spirits, and that we are not infinite in being and mind as God is, yet we are still spoken of as being made in God’s image.
            Some suggest that “God’s image” refers to our being God’s representatives on the earth and having dominion over it. There is nothing inheritably wrong with this interpretation, nor is there anything contradictory about it with the scriptures.
            There is another solution, one that I prefer, which is that we are made in God’s image because we are intelligent and can love good and hate bad. There are some objections to this, however a rebuttal would be ill suited here; it will be provided as an endnote. What is necessary, though, is showing that the skeptic confuses what God’s image is and only by doing so can he produce a contradiction.a
Is God’s Image Male or Female?
            To the skeptic God is a male, though the scriptures show that spirits have no gender. It is true that God reveals himself primarily as a male, yet that does not preclude himself from describing himself as a mother, or his Son, Jesus as Wisdom, who speaks as a woman.
However, this is not the issue here (I thought I’d include a fun fact), but what is can be “found” in Genesis 2:7 (NWT), which says: “And Jehovah God went on to form the man out of dust from the ground and to blow into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living person.” (Which I presume is designed to show that God made man, a theme the skeptic “skillfully” develops, as I am sure you will see.)
            Genesis 9:6 (NWT), which says: “Anyone shedding man’s blood, by man will his own blood be shed, for in God’s image He made man,” produces a new assertion: God’s image is male, or so the Skeptic says. And what of women? Genesis 1:27 (NWT) says: “And God went on to create the man in his image, in God’s image he create him; male and female he created them.” Genesis 5:2 could be added, I suppose, but what the skeptic asserts could be produced from what I’ve quoted.
            And what is that exactly? That God’s image in male, or is it male and female? Neither. He has no gender, yet he shares aspects of both, just as they do with each other. Further, we know that God’s image does not mean gender, nor does it mean visible appearance or form. Further, we note that Genesis 5:2 (NWT) states: “Male and female he created them. On the day they were created, he blessed them and named them Man.” Here Man, is used as it is today, in the sense of mankind. He created both of them in his image, so, while his image is genderless, it dwells in intelligent gendered creatures.

Did Cain’s Descendants Survive?
            Scripturally the male descendants of Seth are the only ones who survived the deluge. Cain and his other brothers and their lines ceased before the waters dried up. So Judges 1:16 (NWT), which reads in part: “And the descendants of the Kenite, Moses’ father-in-law,” are taken as proof that Cain’s line did not perish.
            While no direct male line from Cain to the post-deluge world exist, it is entirely possible that some of Cain’s female descendants did marry into Seth’s line and that therefore the Kenites are in part descended from Cain. I say this, not to disprove the supposed contradiction, which itself is based on the dubious eytomology of Kenite from Cain. An eytomology I’ve not heard of, though I’ve heard some say that Kenite might be dereived from “nest,” which would fit the description of the Kennites by Balaam, “secure is your dwelling, and set on the crag is your abode.” (Numbers 24:21 NWT) No, I don’t say that at all, rather I just want to point an interesting fact out.

Did God Promise or Deny The Promised Land to Abraham?
            The Skeptic says that God either at first promised Abraham the land and then reneged, or the Bible is flawed. Genesis 17:8 (NWT) says: “And I will give to you and to your offspring after you the land in which you lived as a foreigner.” However, they say that Abraham never got the land, and neither did “Isaac and Jacob, the heirs with him of the very same promise.” – Hebrews 11:9 NWT
            They are not contented with us saying, “Israel got it.” For they insist that Jehovah said that not only would Israel get it, but that Israel along with Abraham would get the land as their own. However, given the fact that elsewhere God speaks of his bringing back Abraham’s descendants this hyper-literal reading is flawed. Further Abraham did get the promise through his descendants. Will this satisfy the skeptic? It ought to.
            For in the very same chapter Abraham is promised to “become nations [including Israel].” (Genesis 17:6 NWT) And God said: “I will make [Ishmael] become a great nation.” (Genesis 17:20 NWT) Is there a confusion as to who the person is? Is he also his descendants? Consider what Jacob said at Genesis 34:30, “I am few in number, and they will certainly gather together to attack me and I will get annihilated, I and my house.”

            Here the sense of person is tied up with their house. This is most evident in what Jacob said, for in once place he and his house are “one.” Therefore, it is not unreasonable to say that Abraham received the promise himself, though not literally. There is no contradiction.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Thank you for your feedback. Your comment will be posted after approval.