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What Is the Book of Genesis in the Bible?

Learn about the Book of Genesis in this Howcast Bible study video with Reverend Dr. Timothy Coombs.


Hi, I'm Tim Coombs, co-pastor of Trinity Presbyterian Church in Scotia, NY and a member of the network of biblical storytellers. To learn more about its mission, go to

Genesis begins with stories of creation. One, the seven days of creation, and then also the stories of Adam and Eve and then it begins this early history of the people, of God. Sort of a primeval history. It continues through Cain and Abel, Noah and the Ark, and finally to the Tower of Babel. And then after the Tower of Babel begin what is called the stories of the patriarchs and the matriarchs.

The first patriarch being Abraham who leaves the area where the Tower of Babel occurred, and goes to a land that God is going to promise him. God makes a covenant with Abraham. And there's Abraham and Sarah, and then comes his son Isaac, and Rebekah, and the stories of their sons Jacob and Esau.

And then we continue the story through Jacob to the story of Joseph who goes down to Egypt, well actually is sold into slavery by his brothers and then the people come to Egypt to respond to the famine that is going on because Joseph has provided grain for everybody. Now these stories of the patriarchs and matriarchs are not stories of perfect people. They have their flaws, as we've seen. And that's part of the story of Genesis. Creation begins good, but as the stories continue revealing what people who have their problems, their flaws, these are real people and we can identify with them. And that's why these stories have endured over the centuries, over the millennium. That is what Genesis is about.

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